The MESS is Really a MESSage.

I have small piles of what some may call disorganization, or  a “MESS.” But really, they’re a reminder of things I need to take care of next.  They are physical, tangible messages in my home and office. Some people will say everything should have a place of storage that works for you. Well, I do. Still, for certain projects, once out of sight, are no longer in mind.  From books I want to read, to events I want to attend, to topics I want to write about and or, food I want to buy on sale, I have a little “to do” pile that awaits my attention. It remains a “mess” until I act on it. They may repeat throughout my life. They are MESSages to get on task.

The same holds true for the MESS of history that is repeating itself in all our lives for a reason – the tragedies that swept Dallas, Nice, Louisiana and the ridiculous political circus this year, are just a few examples. These are all issues we’ve not as a collective whole properly or ethically addressed in the past. So, it regurgitates itself in our society into a MESS we need to pay attention to, act on and clean up – together. It’s a MESSage from God, the Universe or whatever you hold as your spiritual truth, that it’s time to stop blaming, holding onto grudges, and our self-righteousness. It’s time to hold the accountable  accountable, collaborate and move forward, with forthright calm, faith and courage.

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Did you get the MESSage?

 

Leave it at the Door

Are we getting comfy with our ego’s   –

Outrage?

Blaming?

Sadness?

Angst?

Shaming?

 

If so, I invite you to come in and get uncomfortable with me in –

Quietude.

shoes-piled

Forgiveness.

Listening.

Sharing.

Learning.

Acceptance.

It’s not too late to relate, act and collaborate.

But,

let’s leave our egos and shoes at the door.

 

Erasing the Finish Lines

Those aren’t finish lines on our body and face.crosswalk-377613_1280

Our soul’s race,

never-ending, so many infinite

miles into the heavens.

Some of us can’t even begin to see, perceive.

Our earthly race,

is only with ourselves.

Let’s set our own pace.

Never crossing the finish line,

but erasing, redrawing, and

erasing them over and over again.

Continuously resetting and

expanding.

Winners in love,

compassion,

courage,

creativity,

and grace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Intuition & Good Choices Vs. Manners & Old-Fashioned Habits.

Growing up in a southern traditional household,  I was taught mannersangel-1294116_640 and to be polite.  I was also taught to NOT rock the boat.

I suppose it’s fine to a point is social situations where you have no intention of being nothing more than acquaintances with a person. You have nothing invested in that kind of relationship. You’re not going to have a long-term relationship with them or do business with them.

As I approached the age of 16, all legal work was game to earn a living and I shouldn’t be too picky because one could never be too prepared. Yes, when starting out most can’t be picky, but the mindset was typically – “money’s money.” If someone wanted to hire you that was a good thing, never mind if you thought it was a good fit, or if you are interested in the work.

I didn’t have a name for intuition till early high school and even then, it was light discussion among friends – something mentioned in women and teen magazines as something all females should have. I wasn’t sure how to talk about that body/gut feeling and or know if it was the same as intuition. Parents and teachers didn’t give it much credit. At the time, the local public library wasn’t stocked with much info on it.

Old habits/beliefs die hard.  Until about 7 years ago, I’ve taken on some freelance clients or partnerships for the sake of money/survival/not rocking the boat/being polite that I “knew” at a gut level weren’t a good idea – and proved themselves to be a bad decision.

I’ve come a long way from those childhood/teenage beliefs. Particularly when they come in conflict with using my intuition.  I haven’t thrown my manners or sense of practicality about money out the window. I just give my intuition as much, and sometimes more notice than old-fashioned manners or my parent’s ideas about work.

Recently, a business salesman and owner approached me during a delayed flight about working for him.  He seemed like a nice enough person. He talked at length about business, family and some random topics in between. Twenty minutes into our conversation, I felt myself wanting to put distance between our seats, but it was too crowded. There was nothing he did specifically that was alarming. I just felt increasingly uneasy. He gave me his business cards for two companies he owns after he learned that I was a freelance copy writer and worked with other marketing professionals. He mentioned that in light of the advertising/marketing help he
needed, that money was not an issue, “I’m good for it,” he said.  I thanked him, but said nothing else.

I mentioned my feelings of being weirded out to my husband who was with me when we got home. He said, “Yes, you should listen to your gut. I thought there was something off about him, too.” I researched the guy’s companies later that week.  They had a mix of good and bad reviews. A recent one stood out. I’m paraphrasing here – Don’t work with this guy. He seems sketchy. I ended up not hiring him after he told me about having hundreds of dollars in overdrafts (he actually showed me proof of) to run both of his companies.

If I’d decided to work with him or refer him to a colleague for the sake of being helpful/polite/following up, who knows if this guy would’ve ever been able to pay for the work?

Anytime you have an unsettling feeling about someone take heed. Manners and good social grace won’t always save you from getting short-changed, or a lawsuit. So, if you have these old-fashioned habits/rules about manners ringing in your head in these situations, notice how your body feels. Is there tightness in your stomach? Do you feel nauseous? Or, do you feel in general very uneasy? There’s truth there.  Follow it.

Are the Hot Fires of Your Work/Creative Passion Fueling You or Burning You Out?

Growing up and until about a five years ago, I thought being passionate about my work and or, creative interests won out over everything.  I thought being passionate gave me the motivation and drive to continue pursuing my goals, and or dreams. It does, to a point. However, it made me realize it is also why I have a hard time seeing some long-term projects to completion. I’ve burned myself out on my passionate feelings in different phases of an idea, project, etc.  You may give so much energy to one part of a goal, that by the time other details are necessary, especially with long turn-around projects, your brain is toasted and fried and you want a vacation.

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A side effect of too much passion?

In this instance and others, I’m finding that passion, for me anyway, wears me out quicker – emotionally, spiritually and physically. I think it’s because I have multiple interests and pursuits as a small business owner. Maybe it’s different for those who are dedicated to one specific career path, hobby or endeavor.

According to Harvard Business Review, there’s different types of passion. There is obsessive passion and harmonious passion. The former, by name alone, is the healthier version. I know I’m committed to it and  being aware about which type I’m operating from.

A medium to high level of interest can make me happy for a greater length of time as long as passion is present. It can make its appearances, but it doesn’t need to be the headliner.  With it, I find that I’m more emotionally attached. This can serve its purpose(s), but it can also be a hindrance to cutting my losses when an idea or project doesn’t work. I also have found that with a high level of passion for something comes greater expectations -Expectations of people, outcomes, etc. If you’re even a somewhat sensitive person, this can make moving forward a challenge sometimes when expectations aren’t met.

Passion is not practical all the time. I’m doing my best to apply it in moderation. I’m liking my interests with an hour or two of passion sprinkled into my life regularly. What is your experience? Share by clicking the comments link to the left.

Fun Hair for Impatient, Busy, Long-Haired Women.

If you’re a long-haired busy mom, a traveling career woman, an overcommitted entrepreneur or an enthusiastic festival go-er, this blog post may help you. Your hair may lose its pizazz 3 days post- washing, or multi days exposed to the elements outside. Whatever the situation, this may be your answer to easyFullSizeRender (1) stylish hair.

Here’s a quick and simple upgrade for your tresses. Like me, you may admire the trends of braids and twists, but aren’t very patient with the attention and time these do’s require. This mix of side twists and single braid took me about 10-15 minutes total. No, it’s not absolutely polished-looking, as my hair is layered, and I had to tuck some stray ends with hairpins.  Anyway, unless you work in the entertainment/beauty, no one will be analyzing your hair that much. This works well if you’re hair is a little unwashed. You’ll need less hair product, too. The build-up in your hair will help conceal frizziness, and make it easier to secure pieces together. Freshly washed hair may make strands silkier, slippery and may take longer than the time I mentioned. If you want an easy, fun, style that can look elegant, too, give this a try.

Directions –

  • Take 1 (or 2 like I did, if you’re feeling ambitious/adventurous) sections of hair on the side of your head of roughly equal thickness on both sides. Twist them and pin them snugly together  in the back center of your head.
  • Then take the excess of the twists and tuck these into any one of the three sections of hair you use to create your braid.
  • Wrap the end of the braid with an elastic band of your choice.
  • As mentioned earlier, secure any stray hairs with hairpins.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Following My Mother’s Example (kind of) – More Caring, Less Minding Our Own Business.

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It’s been over a year since my Mom started discussing the details of being kidney donor to her brother. I told her I’d be there for her – as she’s been for me my entire life (I know I’m fortunate to be able to say this).

I wasn’t truly ready for how I’d feel as she was being prepped  for the surgery itself, or how I’d feel just afterward as she rested in her private room. Maybe it’s the idea that the person who was the authority, the quiet strength in my childhood is in a weakened state.

It was scary. I felt alone as I stared out the window of her room. Crazy feelings! My mom is still alive. Why did seeing her in a hospital bed recovering from a kidney donation freak me out?  She could die from anything – old age, tripping on a sidewalk gap, a spider bite in her sleep. Hospitals and medical trappings not required.

Does everyone feel that way upon seeing their mom/dad/parent-figure in a hospital bed – Even if they only have a broken leg? I wondered. No one has taken a poll. No one is standing outside the patient rooms, in the hallways comparing these heartfelt thoughts. Hallmark doesn’t make cards for us.

As the children of these moms, dads or caregivers of parent-figures, what’s wrong with us sharing our vulnerability with others in the same situation – on the same hospital floor? Is it because we are adults? Are we to pull up our big girl and big boy undies and walk on? Society might say that’s fair. It’s our turn to give back to the person who did their best to raise us as upstanding citizens of this planet. But what, and who does it help – this not sharing, this stiff-upper-lipping? Are we too busy applying the phrase we heard as kids, “Mind your own business?”

My mother told me to mind my own business often when I was a child. However, she also taught me to be a caring, compassionate human being. She is a living example of these traits. I think a happy middle is possible. Let’s show we care. Let’s wear our heart on our sleeve sometime. It may be the only way others know you need some support.

After spending just a few days or more in a hospital, I can imagine for some, like me, minding the business of caregiving for a loved one is intense – at least some of the time. Sharing such business with someone else who is going through a like situation but doesn’t have heartstrings tied to your loved one (or yours theirs) can take some of the pressure off emotionally. Who else wants to not mind their business with me?