Friends are Fragile: Handle with Care

Motivational Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

There have been times in my life when I have been disappointed by a friend. Times when I thought they should have been there for me, and they weren’t.  Those were the times when I was self-absorbed and it never crossed my mind that they may be going through their own challenge, fighting their own battles, and just didn’t have enough energy left over for me and my needs.  Many times it changed the course of our friendship.

More disturbing, though, are the times when I was the one who disappointed my friends.  When I was the one who said something I shouldn’t have said, or didn’t do something I should have done.

I never meant for this to happen. I don’t think any one of us get up in the morning, saying: “Let’s see who I can disappoint today”.

But in this day of emails and texts, words can often be misunderstood. With no facial expressions or friendly smiles to share, we sometimes “hear” words that were not meant the way they appear to be.

I once heard a saying:

There are three things that you can’t take back. I never remember what the first two are, but the third one has sunk into my soul and I will never forget it:

You can never take back the spoken word.

And in today’s world – you can never take back that email or text after you hit that send button.

So the next time you feel disappointed by a friend, before you say something or send something you may regret, take a moment and think it through. Otherwise, be ready to live with the consequences those words may bring.

Do you have a story of a friendship that was misunderstood?  Maybe a friend you miss but the disappointment is so great that the friendship is gone forever?  I’d love to hear how you resolved it.

Categories: Personal Development Positive Mindset Positive Thinking Professional Development
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Working for Yourself: Not All It’s Cracked Up to Be

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

I hear it all the time:

How wonderful it must be to work for yourself. Be your own boss.  Set your own schedule.  Work from home.

The truth is – I HATE IT!!!  I hate the solitude.

If you’ve ever met me, you know I’m an extrovert. I thrive on the presence of people, I love the sound of their voice, I’m stimulated by conversation.  So no matter how great it sounds to work from home –  in your pajamas and bunny slippers – it just doesn’t work for me.

So if you’re an extrovert like I am, and you struggle with the loneliness of being your own boss, what do you do? How do you deal with being alone all day, every day?

Well, here are three different ideas that have helped me:

 

  1. Schedule coffee dates. This helps me get out of the house/office and have some interaction with another human being. There’s just a couple of possible pitfalls to be aware of. First of all, make sure your coffee partner is someone who can help you or you can help in return, otherwise, you’ll become frustrated, feeling like you’ve wasted your time. Secondly, at nearly $5.00 for a latte these days, it can become a bit expensive, so be sure to budget properly.
  2. I love going to the local library to work. I’m surrounded by people, even if they are strangers.  And the surroundings really help to keep me focused. There is no TV, no laundry, no refrigerator calling to me. Besides, the library has large tables where I can spread out, they have free wi-fi, and a bathroom. What more can a girl ask for?
  3. Finding nooks and crannies in nature. Living in Wisconsin with below zero temperatures right now is NOT a good time to be outside.  But as soon as the weather breaks, I’ll be heading down one of the many walking trails, looking for that perfect bench overlooking a lake or river or ravine. That’s where I do a lot of my writing. I’m still in solitude, but for some reason, the natural surroundings make me feel like I’m transported to another place.

And that, my dear friends, are just three ways that I survive the loneliness of working for myself. Do you have other ideas to share?   Any other tricks that can help us satisfy our craving for camaraderie?

And for those of you who do not feel that sting of loneliness, please share your thoughts on working for yourself, by yourself. I’d love to hear the other side of this story.

Categories: Personal Development Positive Mindset Positive Thinking Professional Development
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Does Someone Annoy You to Death???

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

“She drives me CRAZY!”

Do you know anyone like that? Someone who annoys the beejeebies out of you?  Maybe they’re arrogant, maybe they only talk about themselves, or maybe they are so overly bubbly that you just want to smack them!

We’ve all known someone like that, and a few days ago I was talking to my good friend Paul, complaining about someone who just rubbed me the wrong way. He listened patiently, then kindly, gently replied:

“What if you look at that annoying person with a fresh perspective? Look for her strengths and focus on those. Instead of adopting and internalizing what she says, try to adapt it and see how you can use it to become a better person.”

Now there’s an idea!!!

I never thought of it that way. After all, we each have our own story, our own struggles.  And I believe that many times those annoying habits are a result of protecting ourselves from the pain we have suffered in the past – overcompensating in some way.

So I’ve decided to test Paul’s theory and the next time I encounter that annoying, arrogant, bubbly person, I’m going to look for their strengths and focus on that. I don’t know if it will work because I haven’t tried it yet, but it’s worth a shot.   And if you get to test out this theory before I do, please share your experiences with us.  We can all learn from each other.

And in the meantime, let’s hope that we aren’t one of those annoying people that others are talking about!!!

Categories: Personal Development Positive Mindset Positive Thinking Professional Development
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Make This Your Most Extraordinary Year Ever

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

I just heard about this new idea that sounded fabulous to me. It’s supposed to help you through those times when, for whatever reason, you  begin to doubt yourself.  You ask questions like:

“Can I really do this? Am I good enough?”

I’ve been there so many times – when my confidence was shaken to the core, so I decided to try this new idea, and I’d like to share it with you.

Here is it:

Get a brand new, shiny notebook and title it: ALL ABOUT ME

That’s right – a notebook that showcases your accomplishments throughout your life. It could be that time you:

 

Made the basket ball team or the cheerleading squad

Got that promotion or started your own business

Volunteered to help a stranger – or a friend

 

Whatever it is, dedicate a page to it in your new notebook. Maybe you have an article that was written about you, a photograph, or a card someone sent you.

Do your best to create a visual of all your accomplishments, and put them into this notebook, telling the “story of you”. You are the main character!

Then, on those days when you are faced with a challenge and you tell yourself: “I just can’t do this”, pull out that notebook and look through it. Reflect on all those times you epitomized leadership, confidence, determination, and a host of other qualities.

Know that those same traits are inside you right now. You already have all the tools you need to accomplish anything you set your mind to, and this book is a reminder of just how far you have come.

I spent all day yesterday creating my own “Book About Me”, and I am pretty proud of all that I’ve accomplished. I truly feel like I can conquer the world.  And the next time I begin to doubt myself, I know that this will help me to stop, take a deep breath, and continue to move forward to experience my most extraordinary year ever!

Categories: Personal Development Positive Mindset Positive Thinking Professional Development
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