Sometimes You Have to Start in The Middle

Zodiac Horoscope Puzzle by In GooooD

Jigsaw puzzles are a bit of an obsession for me. Nothing stimulates the old noggin like the smell of freshly cut cardboard. The satisfying sound of glossy pieces spilling through my fingers as I search for the perfect shape. Then the ultimate victory of the final reveal when each piece has found its proper place to expose the original picture.

Unfortunately, my precocious kitty enjoys puzzles as much as I do. Unable to set up the pieces undisturbed on our kitchen table, I had to go digital. It’s not the same. Needless to say, I was delighted to receive a round jigsaw puzzle for Christmas. It fit perfectly on my Lazy Susan. Kitty proof!

I eagerly started the puzzle as I usually do by digging out the exterior boarder pieces. After two days of frustration, I was getting nowhere fast. I started over at least three times, but still couldn’t figure out how the pieces fit together. Close to giving up, I decided to try assembling the sun and moon image located at the puzzle’s center. It worked! I began to understand how different circular puzzles were from the traditional square or rectangle ones. Sometimes you have to start in the middle.

Completed puzzle! Hooray!

Is there something in your life you are struggling with right now? Are you approaching it as you’ve always done? Stand back and look at your puzzle as a whole. Is there another way to approach it? Good luck! I know you can solve it!

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

Advertisements

Last Minute Gift Idea for Creatives

© sarsmis – Stock.Adobe.Com

You’ve hit the malls more than once and the long list of “To Buy” gifts is almost complete. Hmm. One name left. It’s for the Creative in your life. This special soul doesn’t seem interested in the latest gadget or fashion trend. Rather they are obsessed with books, music or art (all kinds). Sure, you could give them the standard gift card and let them indulge their introverted desires. Or you could try something else.

A Special Kind of Coupon Book

Make a “Just for You”coupon book – Fill it with items your Creative will truly appreciate. As a Creative, I’ve listed examples I would love:

  • Inspiration Coupon – Good for 1 trip to the museum, symphony, author workshop, etc.
  • Listen Coupon – Good for 1 very long dinner at a quiet restaurant where we exclusively discuss your latest book idea, painting, etc.
  • Opinion Coupon – Good for 1 honest, but kind opinion about your talent and path
  • Support Coupon – Unlimited and does not expire. I promise to support you and your art unconditionally. I will be your biggest cheerleader.

Creatives bring special insight to the world. Sometimes their truth can be beautiful. Other times it isn’t easy to share or hear. Your gift of love and support will give them the strength to continue making their art.

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

Can You Spot the Optimistic Takeaways from A Christmas Carol?

© Archivist – Stock.Adobe.Com

The first Sunday after Thanksgiving, I hop on the light rail and travel to the Denver Center for Performing Arts to see A Christmas Carolby Charles Dickens. For two glorious hours, me and a hundred or so other avid theatre goers put our gadgets away, sit in the dark and allow ourselves to be transported to the streets of Victorian London. We marvel at the tale written over two centuries ago by a master storyteller. We are transfixed by our fellow human beings who act out the classic story just as our ancestors have done for generations.

Two little girls – I would guess nine or ten years old – sat in back of me. They were appropriately shocked and appalled during the scene in which two business men come to ask Scrooge to donate to the poor. He refuses to give any money stating that those badly off must go to London’s horrible workhouses and prisons.

“Many can’t go there; and many would rather die.”

“if they would rather die,” said Scrooge, “they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”

 My Three Optimistic Takeaways from A Christmas Carol

The First– It gives me great encouragement we can still be appalled by dreadful behavior in this age of internet trolls and ugly politics. Or, at least, our youth can be.

The Second– Scrooge’s transformation from a selfish old curmudgeon into a loving and giving person is proof positive anyone can have a change of heart. It is never too late to be a better person

The Third– Dickens reminds us no matter how hard change is or how much they are ridiculed, people of courage will still work toward a greater good. These positive changes benefit each and every one of us.

“Some people laughed to see the alterations in him, but he let them laugh, and little heeded them; for he was wise enough to know that nothing ever happened on this globe, for good, at which some people did not have their fill of laughter in the outset…”

If you are working toward change, I hope this post has been a gift of encouragement to you. Stay the course. Never give up. You are worth the effort.

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

Five Ideas for Learning on the Cheap

© WrightStudio – Stock.Adobe.Com

Are you a curious person who likes to learn? Maybe you’re looking for a career change. Or maybe you’ve recently retired and just want to do something different. Taking classes or workshops can be the answer. Here are five ideas for learning on the cheap.

Five Learning Resource Ideas for Adult Learners

  • SCORE.org(United States Small Business Administration) – Did you know the Small Business Administration wants your business to be successful too? They started the SCORE program in order to foster growth in the small business community. SCORE provides classes and coaching professionals to help. Highly recommended
  • LinkedIn.com– For a minimal monthly fee, you can take online workshops presented by industry professionals
  • Udemy.com– Online resource for just about any course subject you can imagine
  • Local Colleges – You’ll find adult learning programs at many community colleges. They offer a wide variety of classes at reasonably priced fees
  • Local Museums, Botanic Gardens and other venues – Stuck for ideas on your new learning adventure? Try your local museum or botanic garden. They frequently offer specialty classes/ workshops for interesting subjects. Don’t forget local organizations! These groups focus on writing, art or hobby interests

Honorable mention – YouTube.com:I’m a big fan of this online resource. I’ve lost count of how many times I access YouTube in order to figure out how to do a DIY project or a quick home repair.

Being a lifelong learner doesn’t have to break the bank. Technology has provided us with opportunities to learn at a lower cost. So, enjoy those classes and keep your brain active!

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

Are You Prepared for The Dreary Times?

Being a Northern Dweller, I have my “To Do” list of cold weather preparations I tackle each Fall. Clean the gutters. Have the furnace serviced. Pick out my inside projects, so I’m not bored out of my mind during the dreary weather. Winter can be cozy and fun looking outside through the window of a warm house. Don’t prepare correctly and Jack Frost can make things down right bleak.

© Matic Štojs – Stock.Adobe.Com

Our lives can be reminiscent of the changing seasons. Grief or misfortune can bring about the Winter within our souls. Every life experiences the chill and barren ice fields. Nothing can prevent our dreary times. If we prepare during our Summers and Springs, however, the internal Winters will be bearable.

Preparations for the Dreary Times:

  • Cultivate Good Friends
  • Allow Yourself to be Loved
  • Jealously Guard Your Time. Don’t Waste it on Negative Things
  • Diligently Pursue the Positive in Your life

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

Are You at A Fork in The Road?

© James Steidl – Stock.Adobe.Com

Choices. They can be overwhelmingly difficult sometimes. Do you take that job in another city or stay in your home town? Should you buy a house or continue to rent? Crème brûlée or Mud Pie? Hint: Crème brûlée. Always.

We live in an exciting time. So many options to choose from! How can you pick the best one for you?

© garmonbaziya – Stock.Adobe.Com

List out the pros and cons for each option

Carefully evaluate your lists

Do the cons outweigh the pros?

Take your list to a trusted friend or mentor

Still Stuck?

Meditate on the options for a time. Your subconscious knows the right path.

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.

 

Sometimes Doing Nothing Is the Right Thing to Do

I’ve been a project manager almost two decades. Every time a problem or new situation arises, my first impulse is to assess and plan. What is the best approach? Are there any risks? What will I need to do? How much will this cost in time, money and other resources.

The project manager’s mindset of asking these very reasonable questions has given me a successful career. Unfortunately, not all choices are quick and easy wins. Sometimes the big life choices take more.

© sborisov – Stock.Adobe.Com

Quiet Contemplation – What does Nature whisper as you take a peaceful walk in the woods?

Look Inward for the Answers – What do you really want?

Destiny – Are you seeking the path you’re meant to walk?

Sometimes doing nothing is the right thing to do. Remember, however, don’t wander in nothingness for too long. Contemplation leads to decision which finally leads to action.

Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.