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March 2011

Think Acceptance - Not Resignation

One expands your energy, the other puts a lid on it.  Guess which is which. 

I had a discussion with some friends yesterday about phrases we habitually use, whether they are thought connectors, or simply phrases that fill the space.  Words like "right", or "like", or "exactly."  A phrase that I have used and have started to use again is "it is what it is."   I had even included it in an article a long time ago as an example of an equalizer in a difficult management moment, an momentary acceptance if you will.

But, now I realize it's more a phrase of resignation, of resigning to a less than ideal situation or circumstance.  It has shifted my thinking about the notion of acceptance.  The very synonyms of resignation say it all: acquiescence, conformity, long-suffering, uncomplainingness.  That kind of makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time.  Whereas to accept means to favor, to respect, to relish and admire or to come to terms with favorable reception and gratitude.  IluvMyBody

It's a very simple shift.

Resignation means staying in the struggle and feeling of lack.  Acceptance means respecting what there is and working with it and beyond it with tolerance, respect and love.  I don't mean to sound woo-woo here, but try it on for size.

It will make you think about aging, being in an unsatisfying work environment, not being where you "think" you should be at this stage in your life, body issues, and relationships in a whole new light.

George Orwell said, "Happiness can only exist in acceptance."  Bravo.

I say, acceptance expands your energy, resignation puts a lid on it.

It no longer "is what it is."  I'm taking the lid off.

 


Take this job and... love it

I'm sure there are many days you'd rather end that sentence as in the classic 1977 Johnny Paycheck hit.  I find it ironic that Johnny’s last name is Paycheck given the theme of this post.  I’m just sayin’. 

I read a crazy statistic that some 1 million people call in sick every day and surveys vary, but anywhere from 45% to 87% of people in this country don’t like their jobs.  So, if this Lovemyjob
is you, you’re definitely not alone.

But, this isn’t a misery-loves-company kind of day.  How about in honor of this day of love, you make a vow to really love your job.  Even if it’s just for a day?   

If you’re already there, congratulations!  If not, perhaps some of the following ideas might help:

  • Call in sick.  Kidding.
  • First morning thoughts – when you get up in the morning, think of 3 things you’re really looking forward to that day, anything from seeing certain co-workers, to working on a pet project, but list 3
  • Greet everyone you see during the day – exchanging positive energy throughout the day helps to raise your spirits
  • Tackle the tough stuff first – you know what they are, whether it’s a task that has been nagging at you or a mini-crisis that comes up in the moment, crossing those things off your list brings a sense of accomplishment which increases your endorphins (your happy hormones)
  • Ask to be involved – possibly in other areas of your company that interest you, or in a project that you’ve been thinking about
  • Showcase your talents – any time you get the opportunity to show your superiors your successes or even your unique thought process on a given problem, it’s a good thing and makes going to work more enjoyable
  • Make your desires for advancement known – it’s not going to happen if you just have the conversation in your head.  Put yourself on the top of their promotion pile.
  • Take mental health breaks – have a quick chat with a co-worker, call a friend or family member to tell them you’re thinking of them, walk around the block, do 20 twenty squats in the bathroom (you may laugh but I’ve done it!), drink a fast 8 ounces of cold H20, or close your eyes for 3 minutes at your desk and breathe deeply.
  • Eat your lunch away from the office! 

Then at the end of the day look back at the good things that took place.  Don’t allow yourself to focus on anything negative, just the good stuff.  What you focus on expands and if you're only thinking about the negative events that took place during the day you'll only wake up to more of it the next day.  Yuck.

And, tomorrow is a new day!  Who knows?  Maybe you'll do it again tomorrow.

Happy Valentine's Day!


A Day of Service « Ferrell's Community

My amazing friend Ferrell Marshall's latest blog post gives great suggestions for how to volunteer yourself for service.  She's a living example...
I vow to do more. 
"Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love"
Read more...   via ferrellscommunity.wordpress.com

It's not what you do that matters, it's who you are. But, at the same time they are connected, aren't they? When what you do matters to you, then you are more of who you are supposed to be.

Do Genius and Obsession Walk Hand in Hand?

"Music is the mediator between the spiritual and sensual life." ~ Beethoven

I saw this brilliant show last night at The Ahmanson in LA, the original Broadway cast in the Tony nominated play, "33 Variations."   The story dissects Beethoven's obsession with his composition of 33 variations on Anton Diabelli's waltz, told via a musicologist's own obsession with Beethoven's obsession.  The musicologist was portrayed mesmorizingly by Jane Fonda. 

It got me thinking about how both of their obsessions led to true genius by "33 Variations" playwright Moises Kaufman.

Does obsession lead to genius?  Can it?  If it's channeled in the right way? 

Is it curiosity with purpose, or a need to fill a never-ending hole?  Is it ever satisfied?

Dorothy Parker said, "The cure for boredom is curiosity.  There is no cure for curiosity." 

Well, if this is what curiosity leads to obsession leads to genius looks like... I want some.