It’s okay if you cry

You’re feeling confused and maybe a little scared. Go ahead, cry. It’s okay. Life is overwhelming. There’s so much to do. You don’t know where to start. Even if you did know where to start, you’d second guess yourself anyway. You’d convince yourself that you were wrong and then you’d get confused all over again. So yeah, go ahead, cry. Let it out.

Everyone else is just so on top of it. They know where they’re going and why and how and they’re flying toward that goal like Icarus toward the sun. While inferior you sits on the sidelines and feels nothing but envy. That awful green stuff in your gut that makes you dizzy and nauseous. It’s not fair is it? Everybody else in the know but you’re in the dark. So really, it’s okay – cry. Cry great big buckets of giant tears. Fill the pool or the Jacuzzi with them. I understand. I really do. Let it out. Cry.

You failed. That hurts. A lot. You don’t know why you failed and that hurts more. A lot more. It’s not that you aren’t trying. You are. You’re trying so hard that your brain cells are blistered, your mind is bleeding, and your soul is circling the drain. Go ahead. Cry. It’s really okay.

Then tomorrow….

Start again.

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Ranting, Bashing and Speaking Before Thinking

rants

Let’s face it we all have bad days. Sometimes even bad weeks, months or years. It happens. Somebody says something or does something, or you make a terrible decision that comes back and knocks the heck out of you. If it’s traumatic, it’s hard to recover – no matter what you do.

And when we’re upset, sometimes our first inclination is to strike back. We’re not doormats after all, right? We shouldn’t take it lying down, right? All’s fair in love and war, right? Maybe not so much.

If someone wrongs you, has inflicted unwarranted pain on you, discouraged you, or flat out attacked you – then you have a right to counter-attack. Don’t you? Perhaps. Maybe if you could keep it strictly between you and the offender. But the problem is that in modern life, nothing is private. Even your disagreements with your spouse are likely to end up on Facebook or Twitter. So attacking your attacker with wild abandon may come back to bite you.

Don’t Click that Publish Button Yet

Too many people allow themselves to be swept away by their emotional response to a slight, insult, bad review, criticism, etc. Since everybody in the world has a blog, the first impulse is to write a scathing blog post about this terrible thing that has happened to you. But wait. Do you really want your mother to see that? How about a future prospect? Thousands of strangers? Your boss? Your clients, customers or readers? How will they respond? Chances are, not very well.

Sure, go ahead and write that post but don’t publish it. Let it sit there. Read it two weeks from now. Still want to publish it? If so, let it sit another two weeks, go back, and read it again. Chances are you’ll end up deleting it. And be glad you didn’t publish it. While striking back may make you feel better in the heat of the moment, there are a lot of reasons you should reconsider:

  • You could be wrong. Maybe you just misunderstood something and lept to conclusions
  • Others will be turned off and think you are petty
  • You may lose readers, customers, friends or other allies
  • You could be perceived as petty, angry and/or arrogant or even a bully
  • It could hurt others who don’t deserve it
  • It doesn’t change the situation and often makes it worse

The Best Revenge is Success

If you have any kind of online presence or your career puts you in the public eye, you’ll have detractors. It’s simply a fact of life. You can’t get away from it and if you try to attack it, things will only get worse because you chance starting a never-ending battle of being right. Think about it – do you really want to be engaged in the fight forever? So, what can you do?

To quote Vito Corleone:

“Revenge is a dish best served cold.”

Depending on the type of attack, there are plenty of strategies you can use:

  • Ignore it
  • Hire a reputation management company
  • File a lawsuit
  • Provide documentation that demonstrates that accusation is false

In most cases, you don’t have to go as far as the above suggestions; generally, you can just go about your business, stay focused and succeed. People who try to engage you in firefights and online spats aren’t succeeding, which is why they feel the need to attack you. In you, they see a threat. It may only be real in their minds but that is likely what is motivating them. There’s no need for you to play the game. You should feel sorry for them and then move on. If you do, eventually they’ll get bored and move on too.

If you really want to get their goat – prosper and flourish. Succeed. Do you own thing. That’s what counts, right? Your own goals and what you’re trying to achieve? Not some petty words or acts committed by someone you barely know. Believe in yourself and carry on. Believe me, there’s nothing that drives naysayers crazier than that.

If you have to rant – do so in front of your dog or another non-English speaking creatures that don’t have access to a computer. You’ll feel better and nobody will be any the wiser.

What do you think about ranting and bashing on the Internet? Do you do it? Do you like it? Hate it? How do you handle such situations?

Writer Chick
Copyright 2015

Information Overload—Are You Confused?

done in

Okay, I admit it – I am an information junkie. If somebody is offering a free webinar, audio file or eBook, I’m downloading it before I finish reading the promo. And while I love all this free stuff that people give out, I conveniently overlook the fact that rather than help me, it puts me in a state of information overload.

What’s wrong with free information?

Well in a word, nothing is wrong with free information. However, if you just gallop across the Internet downloading free stuff indiscriminately you can end up getting confused. For example, I’m always looking for new ideas on Internet marketing. God knows there are thousands of folks out there offering those services, products and advice. Unfortunately, not all of them really know what they are talking about. Or the information really is just a thinly disguised come-on to encourage you to sign up and pay for their products or services. The valuable stuff is great but it also requires you do stuff. You have to take action with the information in order to get any real usefulness out of it. But most of all, it seems everybody has a different approach, a different angle and a different attitude on the topic. So you have to decide which one is right. But there isn’t necessarily one right way to go about it. Dilemma.

The cacophony of methods and advice can be absolutely overwhelming and leave you utterly confused. And unfortunately can leave you in worse shape than you started out.

How do you make it work for you?

First things first. If you’re confused, overloaded and overwhelmed, you need to stop. Stop looking, stop downloading, and stop buying products and services. Then you need to take a breath. Several breaths actually. Maybe take a walk to look at some flowers, the sky or even other people (just to ensure you aren’t really the only person on planet Earth). Then go home and write down the answers to the following questions:

  1. What specific problem/issue am I trying to address?
  2. What information am I lacking in this specific problem/issue?
  3. What information do I have available to me that can help me take action right now to address the problem/issue?

Once you have those answers you can then go through all your free stuff and find any information that will specifically address your current needs. The rest of it you can choose to ignore or put away for another time or even delete it. Rest assured there will always be mountains of free stuff to choose from at a future date.

What if the problem is that I don’t know what the problem is?

Sometimes you’ll find that you are so immersed in your problem that you really can’t name it and that your thirst for information is more about just finding a starting place. In that case, choose. It doesn’t matter what you choose it matters more that you choose and then take action. Put everything else out of your mind and just apply the one method or piece of advice you’ve chosen and go for it.

Give yourself a break

Don’t feel bad about being buttered all over the place or reprimand yourself for your confusion. We’re hit with thousands of bits of data per minute, whether it is from the Internet, Social Media, television, movies or advertising. The sheer volume could stop a stampeding rhino. The value in information is in the value it gives to you.

 

Writer Chick

Copyright 2013

What Moms Will Do For Their Kids…

 

(My friend, the super-mom, sent me this true story of how she ‘helped’ her kids learn one of those scout-type lessons. Amazing, the lengths we’ll go to for our kids, eh?  😉 WC )

We had our Daisy troop meeting at Oakwood Park this afternoon so we could work on our “Making the World a Better Place” petal by going around the park picking up litter.  I got there with a handful of plastic grocery sacks so each girl could fill her own bag with litter.  Then we were going to talk about recycling as we took any bottles and cans we found and put them in a separate recycling bag. 

So, while the girls are playing before we get started, I look around and….. the park is spotless!!  No litter anywhere!!  Nothing!!  Our petal earning was in serious jeopardy

The only thing I could think of was to send my older daughter to our van (where there happens to be plenty of litter) to get some litter and go out and sprinkle it around ahead of us as we got started.  She said she got some strange looks from people as she was boldly and deliberately littering.  That is, before they saw our Daisies way behind on the trail squealing as they raced to pick up the scraps.

Thank God one of the boys playing basketball happened to finish his water bottle so we had something to recycle!

Technically, we didn’t really make the world a better place but I think they got the idea 😉  Too bad there isn’t a “Make your leader’s van a better place” petal.  😉

(LOL- that’s what I call ingenuity!  WC)

I’m Rambling…

 

I reach out for something to grasp but find empty hands. Darkness. Confusion. Nothing there and no one home.

The only noise is the silence that moves stealth like a viral disease, looking for its next victim.

It’s shaken us, this tragedy that has no explanation – and what explanation could it have? It would still be senseless and without merit. It would still diminish, harangue and frighten.

Safe is not a place out there. It never was. Safe has to be somewhere deep inside that enables you to carry on. Proves to you that there is sunlight outside the door that stands between you and everyone else.

Clutched hands and wrinkled, sodden hankies will not help us now. “Woe is me,” is nothing but a poor replacement for saying something honest. “The world has gone mad” or has it? Are we really that helpless?

Do we not still have our free will, our ever-adaptable minds and individual spirits?

Isn’t it possible even now or because of now, to be bigger than ourselves? Rising to the challenge of facing what makes us want to run away must be key to finding our voices and ourselves again.

Do the words of a rambling mind reach or repel you?

Life is fluid, always changing, despite any indication to the contrary. If we remain frozen in the moment, we are ceasing to live and therefore exist. Aren’t we?

I wish for us, to find our joy and hold fast. To flaunt it where darkness lurks and screeches. To choke off the fear and apathy.

Safe, is the place we make in our hearts and it cannot be taken from us unless we offer it up for slaughter.

God, I Hate Rules!

It’s Official – They Hate Me

 

Okay, so you all know that the new job has been rough from the beginning. But today was the ultimate – one of my staff informed me that they all hate me. Just call me office road kill. Imagine my joy at the news.

Followed by the doctor getting in my face about something, followed by the consultant making fun of me for being upset. I don’t think I’m going to make it there.

 I think I am just the wrong person for the job. I have no one to talk to – and feel like such an outsider there it is just misery.

The worse part of it is – that my blogging has really sucked since I started the job too – which really pisses me off.

I don’t know what I’m going to do – I don’t even know what I can do. Tomorrow I have lunch with the doctor and the consultant – during which I expect them to get on me about whatever – so that will be a meal I won’t be eating.

I never knew I was so unlovable and in fact detestible. Gives one pause, you know? Sorry for the whining but it’s the only thing I can really think about right now.  Can you say, ‘head exploding’?

WC

How Was Your Day at Work?

(HT to A-Mum for pic – WC)

Wrong on Climate Change?

(Here is a compelling article published in the Times Online, that challenges, conventional wisdom on the issue. WC)

February 11, 2007

An experiment that hints we are wrong on climate change

Nigel Calder, former editor of New Scientist, says the orthodoxy must be challenged

When politicians and journalists declare that the science of global warming is settled, they show a regrettable ignorance about how science works. We were treated to another dose of it recently when the experts of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued the Summary for Policymakers that puts the political spin on an unfinished scientific dossier on climate change due for publication in a few months’ time. They declared that most of the rise in temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to man-made greenhouse gases.

The small print explains “very likely” as meaning that the experts who made the judgment felt 90% sure about it. Older readers may recall a press conference at Harwell in 1958 when Sir John Cockcroft, Britain’s top nuclear physicist, said he was 90% certain that his lads had achieved controlled nuclear fusion. It turned out that he was wrong. More positively, a 10% uncertainty in any theory is a wide open breach for any latterday Galileo or Einstein to storm through with a better idea. That is how science really works.

Twenty years ago, climate research became politicised in favour of one particular hypothesis, which redefined the subject as the study of the effect of greenhouse gases. As a result, the rebellious spirits essential for innovative and trustworthy science are greeted with impediments to their research careers. And while the media usually find mavericks at least entertaining, in this case they often imagine that anyone who doubts the hypothesis of man-made global warming must be in the pay of the oil companies. As a result, some key discoveries in climate research go almost unreported.

Enthusiasm for the global-warming scare also ensures that heatwaves make headlines, while contrary symptoms, such as this winter’s billion-dollar loss of Californian crops to unusual frost, are relegated to the business pages. The early arrival of migrant birds in spring provides colourful evidence for a recent warming of the northern lands. But did anyone tell you that in east Antarctica the Adélie penguins and Cape petrels are turning up at their spring nesting sites around nine days later than they did 50 years ago? While sea-ice has diminished in the Arctic since 1978, it has grown by 8% in the Southern Ocean.

So one awkward question you can ask, when you’re forking out those extra taxes for climate change, is “Why is east Antarctica getting colder?” It makes no sense at all if carbon dioxide is driving global warming. While you’re at it, you might inquire whether Gordon Brown will give you a refund if it’s confirmed that global warming has stopped. The best measurements of global air temperatures come from American weather satellites, and they show wobbles but no overall change since 1999.

That levelling off is just what is expected by the chief rival hypothesis, which says that the sun drives climate changes more emphatically than greenhouse gases do. After becoming much more active during the 20th century, the sun now stands at a high but roughly level state of activity. Solar physicists warn of possible global cooling, should the sun revert to the lazier mood it was in during the Little Ice Age 300 years ago.

Climate history and related archeology give solid support to the solar hypothesis. The 20th-century episode, or Modern Warming, was just the latest in a long string of similar events produced by a hyperactive sun, of which the last was the Medieval Warming.

The Chinese population doubled then, while in Europe the Vikings and cathedral-builders prospered. Fascinating relics of earlier episodes come from the Swiss Alps, with the rediscovery in 2003 of a long-forgotten pass used intermittently whenever the world was warm.

What does the Intergovernmental Panel do with such emphatic evidence for an alternation of warm and cold periods, linked to solar activity and going on long before human industry was a possible factor? Less than nothing. The 2007 Summary for Policymakers boasts of cutting in half a very small contribution by the sun to climate change conceded in a 2001 report.

Disdain for the sun goes with a failure by the self-appointed greenhouse experts to keep up with inconvenient discoveries about how the solar variations control the climate. The sun’s brightness may change too little to account for the big swings in the climate. But more than 10 years have passed since Henrik Svensmark in Copenhagen first pointed out a much more powerful mechanism.

He saw from compilations of weather satellite data that cloudiness varies according to how many atomic particles are coming in from exploded stars. More cosmic rays, more clouds. The sun’s magnetic field bats away many of the cosmic rays, and its intensification during the 20th century meant fewer cosmic rays, fewer clouds, and a warmer world. On the other hand the Little Ice Age was chilly because the lazy sun let in more cosmic rays, leaving the world cloudier and gloomier.

The only trouble with Svensmark’s idea — apart from its being politically incorrect — was that meteorologists denied that cosmic rays could be involved in cloud formation. After long delays in scraping together the funds for an experiment, Svensmark and his small team at the Danish National Space Center hit the jackpot in the summer of 2005.

In a box of air in the basement, they were able to show that electrons set free by cosmic rays coming through the ceiling stitched together droplets of sulphuric acid and water. These are the building blocks for cloud condensation. But journal after journal declined to publish their report; the discovery finally appeared in the Proceedings of the Royal Society late last year.

Thanks to having written The Manic Sun, a book about Svensmark’s initial discovery published in 1997, I have been privileged to be on the inside track for reporting his struggles and successes since then. The outcome is a second book, The Chilling Stars, co-authored by the two of us and published next week by Icon books. We are not exaggerating, we believe, when we subtitle it “A new theory of climate change”.

Where does all that leave the impact of greenhouse gases? Their effects are likely to be a good deal less than advertised, but nobody can really say until the implications of the new theory of climate change are more fully worked out.

The reappraisal starts with Antarctica, where those contradictory temperature trends are directly predicted by Svensmark’s scenario, because the snow there is whiter than the cloud-tops. Meanwhile humility in face of Nature’s marvels seems more appropriate than arrogant assertions that we can forecast and even control a climate ruled by the sun and the stars.

Oh For a Scotch and a Pack of Cigarettes

 

Okay folks, so you want a story about my new job? Let me just tell you about my glorious day.

I got up early and got ready – determined to get there ahead of everyone else. New schedule, new commute still trying to hit it just right. And yesterday I was broiling in the office because I wore a sweater, so today just a cotton turtleneck and trousers.

Out the door and the air is like ice – 39 degrees – in California mind you. That’s really cold for us out here. Already I’m rethinking the cotton turtleneck but there’s no time so I jump in my little Chevy. But wait, what’s this? Why did it practically take two hands to turn the ignition? No radio, no heater, no lights, my ABS light is stuck on and there’s this funny smell….

Okay, clearly not getting in ahead of anyone. Drive straight to the mechanic (who I only just saw last week for one of those delux tune-up jobby-do’s) – but only the non-english speaking mechanic guy is there. The manager will be back in an hour – the owner who I’ve known for a bagillion years had just left. Nice big cold wind coming up. Hmmm…who can I call at 8:15 in the morning who won’t want to kill me? Why Zelda of course. Call home phone. No answer. Call cell. No answer. Decide to call work to tell them I will be late. No answer.

Yay, Zelda calls back. Yes she will take me to work. Be there in a few. Now with Zelda a few minutes can mean anything from 5 minutes to an hour. More standing in cold office and cold parking lot at mechanic’s. Finally Zelda arrives, I get in the car, which isn’t quite as cold as outside but not doing much to thaw me out. See Zelda doesn’t like heaters – in fact, she runs the A/C pretty much year round. So I keep my shivers to myself since she is doing me a favor.

Now I’m dreading how many bagillions of dollars it’s going to cost me to fix the car. I have visions of redoing the entire electrical system and various other stomach-churning possibilities. Enough. I throw myself into work. The place is a mess. There is stuffed crammed in every nook and cranny. Old papers, old envelopes, parts of equipment that no longer exists. Magazines, notepads, broken clipboards, Halloween decorations – pretty much everything but the fricking kitchen sink. So I spent most of the day going through all that crap. It did warm me up though – so I suppose that’s the upside.

Then I needed to talk to the bookeeper which took forever because she had to do this or that or whatever – long story short, I finally got a few minutes with her and got her on Quick Books tutorials. During which I discovered she doesnt’ know much about Quick Books and really pretty much computers. Cool, so it’s going to be a long road there.

Then the soon to be ex office manager had a fit because she didn’t get her overtime and she’s going to walk out and ooh, it’s such a drama. I mean we’re talking about $20. Right? So I told her I’d talk to Zelda cuz she was the one who put the kabosh on that – don’t even ask. So I just got off the phone with Zelda and she’s all pissed. And the other one is all pissed and it’s all on my plate anyway cuz well, it just is.

The good news is my car only needed a $50 part – a relay? And it works just fine now. I’m still alive, that’s good news. And there are only two more days left to the work week. Also good news. But Friday we’re having a little party for the ex office manager whom everyone hates and can’t wait to have go – but any reason to have cake and coffee, right?

Right now, a scotch and a pack of cigarettes would do a lot to improve my mood. I gotta tell you I’m not sure I’m cut out for this kind of crap. It’s all stupid and petty to me. I’d rather be writing. I’d rather being reading. I must be out of my mind. Oh well, maybe it will be better next week.

Though the 2nd night of American Idol tryouts is on tonight. I think I’m having a bad day? I’ll betcha there will be others who have a way worse one than me after all is said and done.

Later.

WC