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Real Life

So it is the year 2012 and technology has soared leaps and bounds. We can virtually do anything at home that once required the act of doing in “Real Life”. I am not bashing technology, as I am the first to want to try out any of Apple’s latest products or search for new and exciting virtual experiences, from the convenience of my home.

Socially I have met so many people online, from all over the United States, all the way up the North East Coast to Massachusetts and all the way west to California.
Since I normally don’t travel past the border of South Carolina, that is huge for me.

I am not downing the powers of the Internet or technology, but I am concerned about there being a balance in my life with the “Real World”. I read that there are resort vacation spots that people are paying extra for since they have no satellite or Wi-Fi and are completely remote from connections. It is sad when it consumes us so much that we have to run from it.

I think the key for me, is to let technology supplement my life and not overtake it. I am sure that striking a balance is different for all of us, but if texting is causing you to run over someone with your car, that is not acceptable behavior. It just doesn’t seem relevant to skip your daily workout time because you need to level up your online character. If there are things, projects, goals, experiences that should be in your life that are now replaced by virtual means, then I think it’s time to find your balance.

I challenge you to strike your own balance between virtual life and real life. What are the ways that you can control it? What balance will allow you to soar through this year, and make your own personal leaps and bounds?
“Find it, do it, good!” ~Catlas

I like to connect to people in the virtual world, exchanging thoughts and ideas, when in the physical world we might never have the opportunity to cross paths.
Demi Moore

I think you could make a completely Virtual Centre, though I have a general feeling, and maybe because I am getting very old, that you still need face to face.
Richard Rogers

(image source unknown)

The Chords of Your Life

Gibson Les Paul Standard Plus

It has been 2 weeks since I have entered a post. I thought January was typically a slow month but that has not been the case this year. I started off blogging October 2011 and was faithfully posting up until a few weeks ago. I feel like life is cramping me with all kinds of activities, although not bad things, but you can only do so much in a day.

I recently used my Christmas money to purchase a Gibson Les Paul Standard Plus. That was quite an investment for me but I am serious about furthering my guitar techniques. I have always loved music and the rhythm that guitar strings make, touches the core of my soul. But this post is not about music or guitars, it is about following our passions and being in control of them.

We all have different needs in our lives and the activities we follow meet those desires for us. These needs can change from one year to the next or from month to month. For me, those changes depend on how I control that activity. When the activity starts controlling me then I burn myself out. I am searching for a balance in my life. I want to incorporate new activities such as more time with my music but I also don’t want to forsake things such as this blog. Right now I do not see how I can post daily or even a certain amount each week. I don’t want to commit to a certain amount and then fail either. I will be posting as thoughts arise and let that be based on a day by day basis. Just know that if I do not post a blog for the day that I am working on other projects as well.

Socialization is very important to me and I like having time to spend with my family and friends on a daily basis. Sometimes that ranges from going out shopping with my Mom to raiding or running heroics with my guild family.

My relationship with God is also very important to me and I am trying to follow a plan with a friend that involves reading through the Bible in a year.

And you guessed it, I will be working on my music. I am following a program on a new PS3 game that should improve my skills greatly.

My encouragement for you today is, to find your balance, follow your dreams and desires, but don’t let them control you. You control them!
And if I could add a corny guitar play on words…. Don’t fret, control the chords of your life.

“This life is yours. Take the power to choose what you want to do and do it well. Take the power to love what you want in life and love it honestly. Take the power to walk in the forest and be a part of nature. Take the power to control your own life. No one else can do it for you. Take the power to make your life happy.”
Susan Polis Schutz

Resolutification!

Yes, that is not a “real” word but it is my word for resolving to
make resolutions that really stick!

As this comic amplifies, most of the time New Year’s resolutions turn out
to be a to-do list.
How can we stop this from happening?  I am certainly not a resolutions
expert, whatever that means, but here are some tips that I find
effective and may work for you as well.

Distinguish between your long-term and short-term goals.  You should
have both, but it is important to not overwhelm yourself into thinking that your
long term ones need to be completed in a short amount of time.  That
is where burnout comes in and fizzles us out.
Make separate lists of those in your head or on paper.

Make a daily check-list.  Whether it be on the refrigerator, the
bathroom mirror, or an application on your cell phone or computer,
lists will help you stay focused and tangibly see completed
accomplishments.

Don’t let missed days stop you forever!  When you miss a day or two,
pick yourself up and get right back to it the next day.  Once you do
something for at least 3 weeks consistently it becomes a habit.  We
all know habits are hard to break, which can be a very awesome thing,
if they are good habits.

I hope this helps as you seek to improve and clean up your new year!
Best of wishes to you as you attempt to be a better you!

“There is no achievement without goals.”
Robert J. McKaine

“This one step – choosing a goal and sticking to it – changes everything.”
Scott Reed

“People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.”
Earl Nightingale

“You must have long term goals to keep you from being frustrated by short term failures.”
Charles C. Noble

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”
Zig Ziglar

WARNING

Do you read warning labels?  I would have to answer with, sometimes I
do and sometimes, I toss them in the trash can, without regard.  I
mean seriously, some things are common sense.
I am well aware that I should not blow dry my hair while I am
sleeping.  I also realize that I should not drink or taste dish
washing detergent.

What I would really find useful would be, warning labels on people.
If I could use my eyes to scan a bar code on someones forehead, that
said for example, ‘This man is very stingy. If you marry him he will
charge you for the toilet paper you use weekly.’  Or, ‘Warning:
becoming friends with this person will give you a lifetime of
happiness.’, life would be a lot less complicated.

Yes, I know, this is impossible, and maybe I would disregard the
warning like I do on my mattress cover label, ‘Do not remove or you
will serve time in prison.’

I believe in fate, and that there are no surprises with God.  He
brings some people into our lives to make us grow, and some to help us
make it through another day.

Life can be harsh and cruel sometimes, or it can be the adventure of a
lifetime.  Trust God, that he has a perfect reason for everything.

“A man’s conscience, like a warning line on the highway, tells him
what he shouldn’t do – but it does not keep him from doing it.”
Frank Howard Clark

“History is a vast early warning system.”
Norman Cousins

“Maybe God wants us to meet a few wrong people before meeting the
right one so that when we finally meet the right person, we will know
how to be grateful for the gift.”
Unknown

(Image source: http://www.damncoolpictures.com/2010/11/stupid-warning-labels.html)

KISS

The KISS principle is: Keep it simple, Stupid! Several of my teaching courses in college stressed the KISS principle in regards to teaching methods for children, but it really is a wonderful basis for all of life.

I think simple is always a good thing. Whether you are trying to communicate a huge mathematical problem or directions to the nearest gas station… Keep it simple! Thoughts are retained longer when they are simple to remember.

I have been trying to apply “Simple” to this holiday season. If you are entertaining guest, why is there a need to go overboard and have a 6 course meal, every candle in the house burning, and stress yourself to the smallest of details?
Life should be fun and we should enjoy the process. When things or people become complicated, then worry and trouble are sure to ensue.

So no matter if you are planning a party, forming a new friendship, or explaining to your child about the dangers of playing in traffic, Keep it Simple!

“A vocabulary of truth and simplicity will be of service throughout your life”
Winston Churchill

“The simplest things are often the truest.”
Richard Bach

“Beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on simplicity.”
Plato

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”
Hans Hofmann

“Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.”
Charles Mingus

Out with it.

Today has been cleaning day!  I have taken several large plastic trash
bags and shoved them full of old, worn out items.  You know those
things that somehow you have trouble parting with, but they really have
no purpose in your life?

It feels great to see the results of a cleaned up environment. There
is a certain crisp freshness in replacing broken electronics or faded
shirts.  Sometimes life gets clogged up with broken feelings or
faded relations, that need to be cleaned up as well.

It is good to mentally clean out our minds of un-needed regrets and
emotional drains.  Take the time soon to clean out some area of your
life.

“You leave old habits behind by starting out with the thought, ‘I
release the need for this in my life’.”
Wayne Dyer

“The best time for planning a book is while you’re doing the dishes.”
Agatha Christie

Cutting Loose!

I have had the house to myself since last night, and I feel like the
kid in the  movie, “Home Alone”.  It has been a blast.  I love to cut
loose, sing to the top of my lungs, and turn my music collection up
loud!
Putting some extra steps into my dance with the vacuum cleaner
always makes cleaning time more fun.  It seems my Jack Russell Terrier
enjoys my enthusiasm as well, it appears to perk up his energy level.

How refreshing it is to put our serious faces aside and play as a child.
When is the last time you were able to cut loose?  The nature of
the holidays can become stressful, so I encourage you to do yourself a
favor, and have a little fun along the way.

We don’t stop playing because we turn old, but turn old because we stop playing.
Unknown

Take time every day to do something silly.
Philips Walker

If it’s not fun, you’re not doing it right.
Bob Basso

Live and work but do not forget to play, to have fun in life and
really enjoy it.
Eileen Caddy

(Image Source:http://www.pics-site.com/2011/04/05/home-alone/home-alone-2 )

Laughing Out Loud

Laughter is the best medicine! I love to laugh and giggle, and be in
the presence of humorous people. People that know how to laugh at
themselves and laugh along with others are such a joy.
They take everyday occurrences and find the humor in them, instead
of the sad.

Laughing actually releases endorphins into your system to make you
feel better. It is amazing how laughter can change your whole
countenance.

My brother, Tommy, makes me laugh so hard when I am around him, that
my face and stomach will actually hurt after I have been to a family
gathering.
But the joy that fills my heart and soul in the process is well worth it.

I have personally surrounded myself with humorous people.
I can’t go visit with my Mother without cracking up at something she
says.
My guildies in World of Warcraft constantly keep me snorting and in
stitches. You gotta love people like that.

I salute all of you out there that make me and others laugh on a
regular basis. You are very special people.
My challenge to you today is to find some humor in your everyday circumstances.
Look for the humor and not the sad.

Comedy is defiance. It’s a snort of contempt in the face of fear and
anxiety. And it’s the laughter that allows hope to creep back on the
inhale.
Will Durst

A sense of humor… is needed armor. Joy in one’s heart and some
laughter on one’s lips is a sign that the person down deep has a
pretty good grasp of life.
Hugh Sidey

Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.
Mark Twain

What charge is your ion?

What mood do you set for others when you walk in a room? Do you enter grumbling and complaining and generating negative energy? (OR) Do you greet others with a smile and cheerful words of positive energy? Maybe neither, maybe you feel neutral until you pick up the vibe of the group.

It is possible for us to set moods and we probably do so more than we realize. Are you cheerful when callers reach you on the phone or do you make them realize that they just interrupted your day?
When you are out, especially this time of year, in the crowds of shopping, are you returning other’s impatience with more aggravation? Do you take the time to smile at the sales clerk, which has probably just served a bunch of grumpy customers ahead of you?

It’s so hard to muster positive energy when others are dishing negative ions your way, but we can control how we return that energy back to them or others.
You know how good it feels when others exhibit their positive ions and you in turn feel the charge. Never let those positive sparks die out, keep passing them on.

I challenge you today to be a positive mood setter. Let those positive ions fill up your day and life. Be contagiously positive, and let your energy flow!

“Life engenders life. Energy creates energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich.”
Sarah Bernhardt

“Love the moment, and the energy of that moment will spread beyond all boundaries.”
Corita Kent

“Energy is the power that drives every human being. It is not lost by exertion but maintained by it, for it is a faculty of the psyche.”
Germaine Greer

“The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances; if there is any reaction, both are transformed.”
Carl Gustav Jung

(Image source: http://blogcil.com/2011/how-to-reduce-stress-and-turn-it-into-positive-energy.html)

Dependability

You can always depend on Lucy to pull the ball out from Charlie!

Who are the first people that pop into your mind when you think of dependable people in your life? Who is that person or persons that you know will always be there for you?
Who is it, that when you ask for a favor, you know they will come through for you?

Don’t you just love those people? You can rest in the fact that they will always do their best to not let you down.
Yes, we never know what the next hour in a day will bring to us, and we can’t always do everything we set out to do. Sometimes life prevents us from being there exactly on time, or to make every service or meeting.
But you know, if that person is not there, then they have a very good reason. That’s the kind of people I am talking about!

Are you one of those people? Is there anyone that would claim you as a dependable person for them?

I am so blessed with dependable people in my life, I can think of several, and I count myself so fortunate to have them.

Two thoughts for you today… makes sure those people that you can count on, know how much you appreciate them, and evaluate how dependable you are to others.

“The greatest ability is dependability.”
Bob Jones

“Sometimes being dependable is all one can depend upon.”
Wes Fessler

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