Sunday Suggestion

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I’ve been pushing myself lately to be as productive as possible at work and at home: teaching, preparing for National Board Certification, participating in a video coaching study, painting, working on two books and publishing this blog daily.  🙂  Exercising in the morning actually makes me feel more energetic so that is how I start the day. The days end with cooking dinner and cleaning up.

But I’ve been feeling…unsettled….a bit anxious, even. If I don’t get to all my tasks, I feel down on myself. I’ve been feeling like the proverbial hamster on her wheel: running and getting nowhere.

A few days ago, I was waylaid by the flu. I gave a talk Thursday night to parents for Curriculum Night and then collapsed when I got home.

Of course, I was majorly bummed and nearly distraught: I don’t have time to be sick!

Bedbound, I realized the grace in being forced to slow down. Obviously, my body is trying to tell me something. Unable to clean the house, paint (properly), write or workout is a good exercise in just being. Illness has forced me to get more sleep and in stillness, I’ve watched the monsoons each night in all their glory: thunder, lightning and rain.

So, today, my Sunday Suggestion is to slow down. Maybe whittle a task or two off your “To Do List”

Say “no” more often. Ask for help. Take a walk instead of checking email. Hang out with positive, quality people. Plan a day to do nothing but enjoy yourself.

It might diminish the anxiety. It might help you find your center. It’s already working for me.

 

 

 

Devotion

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Olive smiles when she sleeps!

Our daughter came home last night, crying. She accidentally slammed her hand in her car door. On the couch, she recounted the event to her father.

Olive, our pitbull rescue who has been in the house for three days, walked up to her, put her head and one paw on Josie’s lap and looked directly in her eyes.

Who knows what this dog has experienced, and the suffering she has endured. Still, she was able to show affection in this new and strange home.

Often, animals display more kindness and “humanity” than humans!

 

The 13 Habits* (#4)

 

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Do a Kindness

Practice a kindness every single day. If you’re already doing this, consider being kind to – yes – a rude person, or someone you are not particularly fond of. It’s challenging, but it’s important, if we’re going to change the world.

 

 

 

 

Asian in Arizona

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I glance up and see him, pushing his shopping cart

he is sporting overalls and an enormous white beard

I’m sure he drives a white truck with flag (U.S. or Confederate?)

I’ve been accosted by his type before, in Iowa:

Hey Jap! Go back where you came from!

So I am wary

 

He’s speaking                    to me                    right now

They have a sale on bananas! A whole bag for just a dollar!

He points to a small paper brown bag in his cart

Your kids will love ’em!

 

I’m jolted – surprised – dismayed

How does he know I have kids?

And I realize that what is in my cart

are bags of suspicion, dread and cynicism

 

 

Busy, Busy Bee

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Drawing practice #50

Feeling stressed and anxious about the holidays is a choice. Yes, it is.

Don’t succumb to the pressure to buy.

“This year, shoppers plan on spending $660 on average for the holiday season. 27% report they did not create a budget at all and 24% say they overspent last year.” (USA Today)

Create a budget. Stick to it. If anyone has a problem with it, it’s exactly that – their problem.

Focus, instead, on expressing love for friends and family. Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. That is the true spirit of the holidays, no matter what your faith.

Here is an interesting graphic from USA Today:

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Where Does the Ladder Lead?

“Success” in the career realm often means “climbing up the ladder” or obtaining a promotion. If you are interested in this, Eric Barker has data-driven advice:

Network. There are wrong ways and “right ways” to do this. The right way is to offer help to those around you at work – and not just to the well-liked people. If you can forge a strong working relationships with everyone, you’ll be more likely to hear about opportunities and therefore, be able to apply for them faster than others.

And, stating the obvious: If you are helpful to others before you need their help (advice, introductions to others, etc.)  then you won’t be sleazy. In fact, people will want to help you.

If you aren’t interested in climbing the ladder or playing this game, but you’re kind to everyone regardless of your job, you’ve already reached success.

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