Mindful Monday – Blogging and the Day Job

I’ve talked about balance before, but somehow the lack of balance is an ongoing issue in my life.  When I first started this blog,  I was in a job where I worked maybe two hours in a day and the rest of the time I sat at my desk not really working.  Not only that, I didn’t even have to pretend I was working for some strange reason.  So, I spent a lot of time reading blogs and writing.  Even when I wasn’t reading blogs and writing, I had way more time to think about posts (or even stories) I wanted to write.

I don’t know why it’s taken me almost a year to realize I’m just not able to keep up now that my day job has change, but I just can’t.  I’ve noticed it mostly in the types of posts I’m writing now compared to what they were a year ago.  I’ve only written one story this year that was longer than 100 words, and while I started the year off writing a post every day, it’s become more stressful than fun.

Blogging should be fun, I say!  But, I do miss my blog and all of you when I’m not able to post every day.

I’m still trying to figure things out, but I believe it has a lot to do with some of the prompts I follow.  I’m for sure giving up Teaser Tuesday.  I’m not sure I was doing it correctly, but I felt like I had to post a different book every week; however, I can’t even read one book a month at this point.  So, I ended up posting a lot of books I’ve already read, but sadly, that list is not as long as I’d like it to be.

I also felt it necessary (I’m SO OCD!!) to post Friday Fictioneers on Friday and Sunday Photo Fiction on Sunday, but that isn’t happening any more.  What I might try is writing the stories over the weekend and scheduling them on different days during the week.  I’m just hoping that works for those posting the prompt…

Anyway, this pretty much explains some of my absence recently.  I’m just trying to figure it all out, which comes down to balance for me.

I appreciate all of you who have stuck with me and continue to support me.  I love this blogging community!  I’m not going anywhere, but things might change a little bit on This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time… just a little bit, anyway.

Happy Monday everyone!

Bee at A Spirit of Healing is currently hosting Mindful Monday while Colleen at Silver Threading is away.


Mindful Monday – Learning to embrace change

I can’t believe it’s been another week… the time is just flying by.  It makes me think about how quickly things can change.  Change is a way of life and as much as I don’t like change, it happens every single day.  The way my world looked a year ago is completely different than what I’m living now.

Last year, I was working a job I thoroughly disliked and I was unhappy as hell.  I felt like I was going backwards in my career, not only with compensation, but also with what I was doing.  It was a pretty rough situation.  Looking back now, I’m amazed that I almost ended up staying…

I’d been halfheartedly looking for a job and hating every minute of it.  I remember one random Sunday I sent my resume to two different places while I was making my Monster page public.  Two days later, I couldn’t even remember the name of those companies or what the jobs were.  You can imagine my surprise when one of them called me two or three weeks later.

I decided to set up a phone interview, but two days before it was supposed to happen, I almost cancelled it.  I was talking to my Fiance about how maybe things weren’t that bad at the current job and things were starting to change.  He told me I should keep the interview, “it’s good to have options,” he said.  I still almost cancelled it…

I decided to keep the appointment and I can’t even tell you how grateful I am that I did.  I’m moving up quicker than I thought possible and I have a boss who respects me and sees my potential.  She has raised my pay twice in less than a year and I have another pretty fancy title coming my way as well.  I’m finally happy in my day job after three long years of feeling in-between.

What does all of this have to do with Mindfulness?  I believe it’s about not attaching too heavily to the situation you’re in today.  Accept it, be in the moment, but also know that things will be very different in a week, a month and most definitely a year.

I have a hard time with change, but it can be a good thing in the end.

Bee at A Spirit of Healing is currently hosting Mindful Monday while Colleen at Silver Threading is away.


How do you trust your intuition when fear of failure is so much louder?

I feel like I’ve always had a really strong intuition; the problem is, life has taught me to ignore it.  I suppose that sounds a bit like I’m not taking responsibility for my own actions, and maybe I’m not.

However, this could be something I can turn around and eventually unlearn all the things that bad experiences have taught me.

That’s probably why I’m writing this post – so I can work it out in my head and maybe come up with a plan.  But that sounds boring (even to me) to read, so I think I’ll just forego the planning stage and talk about the “wondering” stage.

I was at work today and received an IM from my boss.  She said she thought I needed to trust my intuition more; which I completely agree with.  I don’t know how many times I questioned something at work but didn’t say anything and later found out I was correct.  I even tell my boss (after the fact) when I noticed things that needed to be fixed or changed, but I can’t really offer a reason why I didn’t say anything.  At this point, I can only imagine she must think I am the most timid person in the world; which I’m not.

I think the biggest part of it is fear of failure.  Just yesterday, I made an assumption about something that my boss later told me I was completely wrong about.  So, where was my intuition then?  I’d like to say I was sick and not thinking straight, but I really have no excuse for that particular mistake.

Outside of work I have the same things happen, but it’s more in how I feel about things.  I had to take my son somewhere and found out his Dad would be there.  I had no reason to not want to go, but I really didn’t want to do it.  I thought my dread came from the fact that it was a baseball clinic in a gym on a Friday night.  Who wants to sit through that?  Well, maybe some people do, but I was bored just thinking about it.  But my feeling wasn’t about being bored.  It was a different type of feeling.

As you might expect, the night didn’t go very well and I ended up in tears.

Was my intuition telling me to be wary, to be aware and protective?  Perhaps, but why the hell is it always so confusing?  I think I’d hear it much better if it was more clear in its warnings and not just a weird lump of dread sitting in my belly for indiscernible reasons.

Or, was I just setting myself up for the situation that occurred?  You know the whole “what you think you create”?

Where’s the line and how do you know the difference?

I suppose the only thing we can do is exactly what I’ve mentioned – be aware; be present; listen and assess.  I’m assuming that old intuition can’t always be right, can it?

Coworkers – Is it possible to have friends at work?

Relationships with coworkers are strange things.  Every once in a while you hit a jackpot and you end up finding someone to chat with and go to lunch with.  That could even turn into a true friendship, which has really only happened to me once in my life (although it may be too soon to say;  I could have way more friends than I realize, or way less…).  Most times, when I leave a job, all the friendships I’ve built at work sort of fall away after a time.  What is it about our own lives that makes it difficult to keep in touch with people who seem so important at work?

I started writing this post thinking it was going to be funny, but it’s taking a different turn…

Anyway, the reason I started thinking about this was that I walked into work this morning and said hello to the only other person in the office at the time, and she didn’t say a word to me; didn’t turn around; didn’t even acknowledge my presence.  Who does that?  I realized a few minutes later that she had headphones in, but it’s not like I was invisible

So, I started thinking all the insecure things people think when they are ignored for what they imagine is no particular reason at all.

What did I do?
Does she hate me?
Was it that thing I said that one time that maybe she took in a way that I so didn’t mean?
How can I make this better?
Do I even care?

The answer to the last one is, of course I care.  The other question that arises though – is there anything I can do about it?

We spend so many hours at work, it’s difficult to spend time with people who so obviously dislike you.  I’ve been in a situation where my coworkers were downright hostile to me and I had to take it up with my manager.  It helped after a time, but if I’d had a choice, I would have left when it was happening because it made me feel awful.

I’ve also had coworkers who were so far in everyone’s business that everything became a slight… she’s not talking, what’s wrong with her?  She didn’t ask us to lunch, is she mad at us?  You know the whole, we’re all friends but we all actually aren’t?  That was a pretty ridiculous situation.  It honestly felt like I was in high school again.

I’ve also been in a situation where everyone was perfectly polite but no one really knew anything about anyone because we all just worked and stayed out of each other’s business.  That was nice for a time, but I think we all need closer interactions with people.  Maybe not everyone, but some (but not in a way that makes you seem like a stuck up bitch because you only talk to so-and-so…).

I’m not sure there’s a happy balance.  It seems like a constant struggle.  I suppose I can only hope for respectful relationships while at work.  And when that coworker doesn’t want to talk to me for whatever reason, I’m just not going to take it personally until she tells me I need to.  I don’t think I’m going to let it change how I am though.  I’m still going to say hello when I walk into work in the mornings, whether I get a response or not.

How about you?  Do you have odd work relationships?

The spaces between old school and new school

A few years ago I was scrolling Facebook, because that’s the thing we do now when we’re just sitting at work not actually working, and I ran across an article about the number of spaces after a sentence.  It was one of those articles that basically said if you put two spaces after a period at the end of a sentence, you are old school and “just stop already!”

I don’t know about you, but I learned that there were two spaces at the end of a period and I spent my entire life living by that rule.  I’m a rule person.  If there’s a rule, I generally tend to follow it.  So when I read this article, I was interested.  Could I stop doing it?  Was it truly necessary?

I might be that person who follows rules, but I don’t follow them blindly.  I want to know why and if there’s a better way or if the rule no longer applies, I will change.

I looked into the spaces and found that no one really agrees.  There are different ideas on both sides and you have some people who say it’s “a thing” and it should be done no matter what.  But then there’s the other side who say it doesn’t really matter.

Since it was so ambiguous, I went with the old school versus new school thing and decided I did not want to appear “old” by any means, so I stopped doing it.  Do you realize how hard it is to change something like typing two spaces at the end of a sentence?  It’s difficult!

But after a few months, I managed to change and I could say I was a one-spacer new school genius!… or something like that.

Then I started my current job.  I basically manage accounts with millions of dollars and I communicate with high level executives.  The first few months I had to send all my emails to the VP to review and approve.  One of the things she chided me on was the two space thing.  Seriously?  I even looked it all up again and really wanted to tell her it wasn’t “a thing”, but I really like my job, so I bit my tongue and tried to do two spaces at work and one at home.  That, my friends, was an abysmal failure.

I finally decided that work was more important than my ego (or whatever reason I decided to take up one-spacing) and I went back to two.  Honestly, it was like riding a bike.  You never really forget how.  It was a lot easier to start doing it again than it was to stop doing it, I can tell you.

What about you, all of my WordPress friends?  Which school are you in and why or why not?  I’m really interested to hear from the writers of the world… or at least the writers in my small sphere of the world.

JustJoJan Day 5 – Looking forward to an amazing 2016

I can only imagine that 2016 has to be better than 2015. I think I only say that because at the start of 2015 I was so hopeful. It was going to be the year, even though I started the year out getting laid off and starting a new job. I had no idea at the time how much I would need to go through in order to get where I am today.

It was a long road.

The only thing I feel like I kept up and actually increased was my blog. It warped into something new and different and I sometimes miss the longer stories I was writing, but I just don’t have the time right now. I’m happy to write shorter stories, poems and little snippets of my crazy life. I even managed to start my own prompt which I feel is more successful than I ever imagined it would be. Even if I didn’t have other bloggers  participating each week, I have so much fun sharing my favorite music and music lyrics every Sunday.

I’m not one to write down goals or to carry a bucket list, but I do have some plans that are coming together for 2016. I’m hoping to have some amazing news soon in my personal life and the new day job I moved to in September has only one place to go, and that is up! I’m more excited than I can say that I took that particular plunge. Even as miserable as I was at the job I had last year, I still almost canceled the phone interview I had in September. I thank my boyfriend almost every day that he talked me into keeping it.

As far as writing, I am starting to feel the novel coming back to life in my head. It’s been sitting dormant for the past year and I’m feeling it tickling the back of my head again. It’s weird how I can ignore it for a while but it starts to sit in my head again, and I know I spend too much time thinking about it rather than writing it down. So much of why I don’t keep going is insecurities. I know we all go through it as writers, but writing for the blog has helped tremendously.

Anyway, this turned into more of a retrospective post about last year, but I am looking forward to everything coming together for this year.

I want to thank all those who have clicked the follow button on my blog. I am over 400 followers today and I can’t even imagine how that happened. I am incredibly grateful for this amazing community and to be a tiny part of it.

Just Jot It January is hosted by Linda G. Hill. The prompt for today, 2016, was given to us by Fiona’s Favorites. Feel free to join in the fun!


SoCS – Eating Food and Other Random Thoughts

Usually, I have some idea what I’m going to write about when I start the SoCS post, but today, I just don’t. I suppose I can’t really go wrong in talking about food and eating food, but I feel like I did quite a bit of that when I did the A-Z challenge back in April, which wasn’t even planned, by the way. I wasn’t going to do a theme, but I think it helps when doing that particular challenge.

I’ve had a few jobs in the past couple of years and the one thing that bothers me, but probably shouldn’t, are the places you can find to eat around your workplace. I don’t think you realize how used to those places you become until you no longer work there and have other, not as great choices around the new job.

I went from a pretty eclectic neighborhood where I had a ton of really good choices within walking distance to a mall. It was pretty terrible. Most days, I chose to take food from home since the choices were pretty dismal. The one place I found that I loved, though, was a pizza place (of course). They make personal pizza’s in like five minutes that are really good, considering most of those types of pizza places are disgusting. I got really used to having pizza once a week and it was the place I went to on my last day of work over there.

Luckily for me, I found the exact same pizza place about five minutes from my new job. It’s pretty sad (or maybe it’s not) that food makes me this happy. Or maybe I should say pizza makes me this happy.

I also have some new, rather delicious food choices around my new job, which is good because I find myself with a full hour lunch now that I have no idea what to do with.

Going to lunch alone can be scary, but lately I am finding it is peaceful. I don’t have to deal with someone else’s drama or with what someone else wants to eat. I just do what I want and spend the whole time either reading or playing on my phone. Perhaps this is anti-social of me, but after my last job and the drama I left, I don’t think anyone can blame me.

Eating food is a necessity, but it doesn’t have to be a chore. I always say that life is too short to worry about it, but I worry about it just as much as the next person. Did I eat too much? Have I had too much sugar today? Did I have any vegetables or fruit to balance out the other shit in my diet that is terrible? I love food, but I over-think the hell out of it. I wish it wasn’t so much of a love-hate relationship… like why does food have to add pounds? Should that even matter?

Yeah, no answers here. All I can say is that I love it and I try to enjoy it while not beating myself up too much for eating too much of the stuff that has no nutritional value even though it can be the most delicious thing in front of me.

This rather random post about eating food is brought to you by Stream of Consciousness Saturday, hosted by Linda G. Hill. “Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “-eat.”  Use the word “eat” or add letters to it to make a different word. Don’t cheat!”