A Life of “Defining Moments”

 

 When I posted the poll below, I had not yet learned that my dear friend Karen had had a stroke.

Karen lives with a life threatening blood clotting disorder.   That’s her in the picture, a blond brit with an amazing story to share. 

RIght now she’s working on getting her body stable enough to learn to walk once

again after this most recent stroke.  Prayers are welcome. Pity is not necessary!

Karen considers these moments in life when “everything changes in a blink of an eye as defining moments” 

 

Thank you to two wonderful people who helped me get this picture off of my old cell phone and onto my computer!  Thank you to  Danny the nicest “geek” there has ever been.  Also thank you to Kevin, someone I didn’t even know when he stepped up to help me out – I think his actions speak volumes about his character! Thanks to you both!

I’m writing about the poll over the weekend. Have you taken it yet?  The new post should be ready for publishing by Monday.

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I am writing a piece about this topic. I would love for you to take this poll in advance of the post!

The Pain in Positive Thinking

Next Teleconference

THIS SATURDAY!!

Just a reminder, my next teleconference is:

September 27th 

3:00 – 4:00 PM EDT

If you’re interested in participating, please fill out the form on the contact page.  Once I get your email I’ll send you the phone number and access code you’ll need to join in the conversation.  After you have done this once, you’ll automatically be informed of all future calls.

There is no charge for the teleconference, except what your long distance carrier charges for a call.

The Call

The conference call is set up in an informal format.  I will introduce the topic and then the rest of the call is open to question and answers. 

During Saturday’s conversation we’ll be addressing the pain that can be caused by “Positive Thinking” and “Affirmations” I will explain how making one small shift in your “positive thinking tools” might make a huge POSITIVE shift in your life.  

How to Worry: A Primer

I wrote this in the morning and it’s getting moldy just sitting in my draft bin.  So, because I don’t want you to be without some new worrying skills, I offer you…

How To Worry!

My friend Susan recently said to me, “it seems your thinking in the shower produces good ideas.”  WELL, I DID have some ideas about worrying in the shower this morning, so lets see if she’s right.

I worry.  I would like to say it’s genetic and not my fault but the bottom line is “I” worry and “I” am responsible to do something about it.  Worring is a sink hole in the path to my best efforts.  I don’t want anything to come in between me and those goals, so I’ve been looking for ways to be with, respond to, and/or reduce worry.   I think I have figured out how to reduce the hold worry has on me, without ever really trying to make it go away. 

To do this, I start with something I enjoy.  I really love  Sundays for example.  I love my Sunday paper and watching CBS Sunday Morning.  Public Radio programs on the weekends are my favorite and I even…wait for it…like Sunday football.

Here’s my first point:

In the shower this morning, I started to worry.  Random worries, that’s how it is for me.  What will happen when the market opens tomorrow?  What if I can’t make enough money at X.  What if that X becomes President?  Can I get a visa to move to another country if he does?”  Just a slurry of fret. 

As I was soaping up I thought (this is important) “It’s Sunday. I love Sunday’s so I’ll just worry about all this stuff tomorrow.”  Put off the worring until later!  Why not?  It’s not going any place. I don’t have the answers right now so why screw-up my Sunday with it? 

I think I have stumbled onto something really great for us worriers.   Tell yourself,  “I’ll worry about this tomorrow, or in an hour, or few minutes.”  You are not denying the worry it’s moment, you’re just telling it, “we’ll talk later”. Worry actually seemed alright with all of this, and it seems, as long as I don’t deny it, it’s alright with being back burnered.  This “free floating foreboding” kind of worry seem OK with it at least.

I think this way of talking to our worries is really healthy and here’s why.

1)  We are not getting pissed-off at ourselves FOR worring.  It is very, very, good for us not to get mad at ourselves, better than eating super foods I think.  Because beating ourselves up for worrying is an insidious and corrosive thing to do. Not only are we upset that we are a “worrier” now we are both worried AND MAD at ourselves for being a worrier.  Good Lord…ISN’T IT TIME WE THROW OURSELVES A BONE?!!! ?

2) Next good thing.  Lots of us worrying types are also….procrastinator types.  Also a good thing.   BECAUSE we have experience in putting things off until later.  So not a big stretch to think, “I’ll worry about this a bit later.”  I love this.  Seeeee, the things we are used to chastising ourselves about have all come in handy.

3. By putting off what we worry about today until tomorrow, fills in that sink hole so it’s easier to take steps in the direction of ones goals.  Even hard steps.  If we can just put off the worrying we can do something that can, strangely, deflate the very worry that was keeping us from our greatest selves.  Can I hear a Wooo Hoooo?

If we are going along fine and then the sink hole opens up. Not a problem.  Just try a few things.  First, see if you can put off the worries for a few more minutes while you just get your ass out of the mud.  Still stuck and sinking fast.   Reach for “support”  don’t ask for a rope, can’t ask to be rescued.  But you can and should ask for support. 

4. Here’s how to get support.  Contact someone you know that has your very best interest in their heart.  NOT the person who’s used to tossing you that rope every time your sliding.  If you don’t have someone you know can give you support. COMMENT on this blog post or  CLICK MY CONTACT PAGE! and write me a note.  I for sure have your back!  I will scream myself horse for you and I don’t keep a single rope in stock! 

So just write : Rachel, I want to _______ but I’m in the sink hole and am just sinking fast.  We will find out what you need to do for yourself to get outa that muck.

There’s also this…

5. You can always go ahead and be worried and stuck.  Yep.   I would actually strongly suggest you write out everything that’s dogging you.  You might be able to see it for what it is much better this way. You will end up with a list of stuff you can and can’t do things about.  This is a very handy list to have.

To review:

1. First find something you enjoy that’s right in front of you.  A cup of coffee, late afternoon light, the chair you’re sitting on, your old hound napping by your side.

2. Think, why mess-up this thing I enjoy by getting worried about stuff.  I will worry a little later and just enjoy this.

3.  Since I’m not worring right now, what one little thing can I do in the direction of something I want in my life? 

4. Start doing it.  Soon as you feel the ground giving way, maybe even before, seek support.  Support and rescue are not the same thing.  Ask for a “you go girl” or “go dude” from someone who you know has your best interest in mind.  Do not ask for a rope.  The rope, by the way, might get you out of THIS sink hole but it WILL swing you into a deeper one. Mark my word.  Keep moving.  Worry will have a harder time finding you if you’re in action!

5. But, if you can’t keep moving,  worry, but worry on paper. Write down all your worries.  Then you’ll have a list of what you can and can not do anything about.

How to be as Limited as Mozart

I was invited to be a guest poster on the blog “Catskill Cottage Seed“.  It came out of a post that Richard, the blog author, wrote about embracing limitors.  I had submitted a comment which developed into the following post on his blog. 

 

Guest Post

by Rachel Z. Cornell of Why Not Rachel

(Rachel is a legally blind blogger, speaker and author of upcoming book, Life Without Limitations. You can follow her on twitter @dreaminaction. Her comments on our post Embracing Limitors developed into the following:)  

Maybe it would be helpful to think of parameters in terms of a piano for example. A piano has 88 keys, but this number didn’t seem to limit Mozart. There’s only a measley 26 characters in the English language and yet Shakespeare seemed to do just fine expressing himself with such limitations.   

I think our struggle comes from 1) something being  taken away from us and 2) wanting what we don’t have .  This is nearly the same issue but let me take them on one at a time.   
 
When something’s taken away:
If I told you that the alphabet has too many characters and I’m going to need to take the E and the G from you, what would you do?  Well you would struggle to write for a while.  Look at that sentence I just wrote without it’s E and G.  Wll you would strul to writ for a whil. Hmmm, I’ll need to figure out how to write this without any E and G’s.  What might I write? “Words will form with difficulty for a bit”  That was hard.  You try it.  So just think how it might be like to be the guy with two legs all his life and boom, now he has one? It will be hard for a while.  He will need to create a new way of moving his body.  This is working with the parameters you have in any given moment and make something amazing with what you have.  
 
I do not consider my eye sight a limitation.  It’s frustrating at times, but you know, fussing with that sentence above was frustrating too.  Without the nature of my eye sight the trajectory of my life would not have gone in the direction it has.  I would not be likely be writing a book about living a limit free life if I had 20/20 sight all my life.  
 
So what about wanting what we don’t have? 
 
My husband often says “our greatest disappointment comes when we compare ourselves to others.”  It’s smart, but I wish he wouldn’t say it when I’m whining about something I wish I had. 

 
It’s not unreasonable to want something.  I want to drive.  I also want to remain alive, so I don’t drive.  It’s reasonable to grieve something. “I want to walk with both my legs”, from the person who’s lost one of them. This is not the same as saying I want the latest iPhone. I can want to drive myself to meet a friend for coffee, but for me to hang out at home wanting something that’s not going to happen is messed up.  I have to get clear about the more important want and go figure out how to do it with what tools I have available to me.
 
These two points really are one in the same. 

Have you had to find a new way to do something in your life?  I am not big on the idea of “picking up the pieces” by the way.  If things are in pieces, things have changed forever.  I’m big on evaluating the situation and working with the parameters as they present themsleves in a given moment.

McCain Can’t Send an Email??

I just wrote an email to Glenn Beck after seeing him and a panel of guests making up excuses for why McCain can’t write and send emails, here it is….
Mr Beck,
McCain can’t send emails?  Come on.  I have to disagree this you and your panel on this one.  He can and would send emails if he wanted to.  There’s plenty of adaptive technology for anyone who has any kind of print disabilities to send an email.
 
I worked with a man over 15 years ago, 15 years… with quadriplegia. He used a computer to write and SEND emails using his voice only. McCain’s VOICE works doesn’t it?
 
I think your excuse for him is shameful.  A friend with Cerebral Palsy whose muscular spasms makes scratching his nose an effort, sends me emails, instant and text messages. 
 
Obama’s ad says that McCain is out of touch. You disagree.  With all the technology that is available to us now there’s no reason or excuse for McCain not to be able to write and send an email himself.   
 
His “limitations” have nothing to do with his disabilities.
 
Written and sent by legally blind,
Rachel Z. Cornell

At the Twitter Cafe’

If you have been thinking about signing up to use Twitter, here are a few things that might help you both use it and feel more comfortable with it.  I write this from a non computer, non social networking, don’t know what the letters PR stands for kind of perspective. 

 
I think it was Jonathan Fields who said that Twitter is like the water cooler at the office.  I think it’s even cooler (so to speak) than that.  And something many of us are also likely to be comfortable with. 
 
I am seeing it more like a really hopping cafeteria at a huge high rise office complex.  So not only are there people that are not in our “department” having lunch at this “Twitter  Cafe” there are tons of people that are from other offices all together. 
 
So what we are doing in Twitter is building acquaintances.  We come into the Twitter Cafe and ask if we can set your trays down with an interesting group of neck tie types.  Or we go sit with those cute blue-jean, Google-like geeks over at the table by the window.
 
So I think it’s not right to think of Twitter as JUST a marketing tool, even though it clearly is a wonderful marketing tool.  To think of it in JUST that way l feel is using people, and that’s just not my style and hope not yours either.  I think we are building all kinds acquaintances as I said before and maybe even some friends, at least familiar faces.    
 
Which brings up faces.  Have one!  Have at least an icon that is the symbol of you.  Otherwise it’s like going down for lunch and saying, “no one talk to me.”  You want people to say, “oh there’s that crazy lady with the red shoes who takes her little dog everywhere!”  So put an image up for your Twitter self.
 
I come down to the “Twitter Cafe” now and then whenever I’m working on the computer and see if there’s anyone there or any conversation I want to add something to.  It’s just not promo.  I am not totally keen on the idea of just coming down for lunch and say LOOK WHAT I DID AT MY DESK TODAY!  I think…”who are you???”  The only exception to this rule is the fat and sassy like dudes named Seth who can have everyone follow him and no one he follows..seems a little Messiah Complex to me.  I’m just saying… But hey, if you have something really interesting to say, “say it and they will follow.”
 
So we are social people who like people, sit down at  the Twitter Cafe now and then, and say hi.  For people who work primarily for or by themselves,  this is an especially great place for us. 
 
The other thing I want to say is about following and being followed.  That’s just like who you notice in the cafe and who’s noticed you sort of.  The guy that’s following like 8,000,000 people and is followed by like 2 people,  I don’t trust.  I think Parana.  If someone like that follows me, I usually say no thanks.  
 
If you don’t know what I mean by follow and following ask me and I can explain it more clearly than I’ll do right now.
 
So I’ve noticed the most interesting and “popular” people in the Twitter Cafe are those that have about an equal numbers of followers and followings.  So, okay, yes, I wanta be popular.  But I’m not going to go around shaking hands with everyone at lunch all at once that makes me the scary person.  The parana I mentioned above.
 
I’ve been trying to follow 1 or 2 new people every day.  When I do this, I’m seeing that more often than not, they tend to follow me too.   If they post too much or we just don’t click, I will un-follow them.  
 
So if someone seems interesting enough to sit at the same table with your cup of coffee, go ahead and  follow them.  You don’t even have to talk to them.  By following you’re just catching each others eyes and tipping your head at them in a friendly hi.  That’s it.  They are likely to smile back.
 
So as you get to know the faces of the people that work in your office building and know a little bit about them, you can share a little bit about yourself.  There are likely to be some people at your table who do want to hear about what you wrote about this morning.  Or they might want their co-worker to hear about what you wrote about this morning.  So see now you are really a part of a social network. 
 
I’ll see you at the Twitter Cafe.  I’ll be coming down soon to strech my legs and grab a bite.  Click HERE to follow me.


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