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Archive for December, 2009

I am against New Year’s Resolutions. I believe that people make new year’s resolutions with good intentions, but with a subconscious knowledge that it will NEVER happen. I once made a new year’s resolution to write more as it was something I enjoyed and knew I wanted to do. And of course, it didn’t happen.

When I was in Grade 7 (give or take; I don’t honestly remember quite how old I was) I wrote a book. I chintzed out on the ending (I killed all my characters to avoid a complicated dénouement) but I wrote it.  All of it. By hand, no less. And I would be lying if I said I haven’t read and re-read it at various points in my life wondering why it never moved beyond that old, coil-bound scribbler.

And then…a light went off in my head.  What happened to my writing? I love to write.  I want to write.  But I was not doing it as a sole focus or a single passion. Why not?  Because I was waiting for the right moment.  A “New Year’s Resolution”, so to speak….

I finally made a “Random Tuesday Afternoon Resolution” to keep up my end of the bargain and get back to writing. And today…I love EVERY minute of it.

Even when writer’s block hits.

Even when critiques slam my desk.

Even when all I can do is stare at a blank screen for hours and wonder where to start… I love it.

So this year, among my yearly resolutions to exercise more and eat less chocolate, my New Year’s Resolution is to quit writing. That way, I know it will never happen; and that is a resolution I can keep.

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I think in some ways, I was meant to blog. Because I know, in one sense or another, I was meant to write.

I LOVE to write.

You know that feeling you get when you are doing something and you love it, just because? Well, that’s me and writing.

These days, I make an effort to do things during the day that I like to do. I know it sounds cliché, but life is too short to spend it doing a bunch of things you don’t want to do.  Some things, like dishes and paying the bills, need to be done.  But I am working very hard at spending a few minutes every day doing something just for me. Be it reading, writing, playing one of my musical instruments or listening to a great song…

And so, I blog.

Try it – you’ll love it. Spend some time focusing on yourself. It’s worth the effort. Find your bliss- and follow it.

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Lately it seems like a lot of posts and comments I read describe how bad, lonely, thankless, etc. the career of technical writing can be. As a technical writer, I feel obligated to make a few rebuttals.

Here are the five things I love the most about being a technical writer:

1. It’s a great life. What can I say. I love to write, I love to tinker and explain how and why. But mostly, I love to write. And outside of being an author or a blogger, both of which I hope to do in my spare time, it is the only way I know how to get paid to do what I love.

2. It is a gratifying job. You are not going to be CEO and you are not going to have your face on Business Weekly. But you know, every single day, that the work you do is useful. And that’s more than I can say for some other things I’ve done in my life.

3. I get to work on my own terms. I love the flexibility of my position. Granted, I work for a great company that allows me that flexibility. But all I really need to do my job are my fingers, a keyboard, some great tunes, and a scratch pad for my random thoughts. How many other people can say that?

4. I can always improve and learn more. Writing is something that you can always do better or learn more about. The best way to improve- write more and read more. Lucky me, those are two of my favourite things to do. How much better can this get?!

5. I get to practice my job by doing what I love – writing and reading. I get to write a blog, work on a book, read the latest novels, and peruse some timeless poetry, all while improving my writing skills- both technically and otherwise.

It’s a good life.

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Balancing my cheque book

A friend chuckled at me the other day when I told him I balance my cheque book. That got me thinking a bit… and I think balancing a cheque book is a little like balancing your life. Cheques are debits from your bank account. Pay cheques are credits to your bank account. It’s important they are in balance… in should equal out… or you’ll have trouble.

What about your life? Good days, happy events, positive people and positive influences are like pay cheques- credits into your bank of SELF. Bad days, draining and negative events and life challenges are like debits to your bank of SELF. What happens if you don’t balance? You might start to feel like you’re swinging a lot one way or the other.

I believe it’s important to be in balance. Just as the negatives are needed to learn and grow, the positives are needed to recharge and refresh. Both are very necessary and fundamental elements of life. But it’s always important to remember to balance.

If you feel a bit down, give yourself a lift. When life hands you a challenge, take a few minutes of me-time that same day to refresh and rejuvenate. That might be a good book, a glass of wine, or a hug from a friend.  When you have an amazing day of compliments and positive events, take a minute to count your blessings, remember your roots, and give a smile or some spare change to someone who’s cheque book is a little less balanced than your own.

But remember to keep your balance.

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Hair Trigger

Lately I find myself thinking…’I hate it when people do that!’ and ‘I hate it when that happens!’

Why? Why is it that we are all packed up in a society so tightly wound that we exhibit hair triggers for the simplest things?  People who don’t hold doors for others. People who do not get up for those in need on a crowded train. People out with other people at a restaurant ignoring each other in favor of their phones. People who shove their way into a croweded elevator without letting anyone off. None of these things hurt me, or quite frankly, affect me in any way. But I see these things and my first instinct is “ARGH”.

In today’s world of elevated stress levels…I have decided to take a new approach. HAHAHA. Laughter… the best medicine, yes? So instead of having a hair trigger, I’m going to laugh. No one is getting hurt and no one is worse for wear.

So rather than raising my blood pressure, I’m lowering it by laughing. And looking around at those I see being annoyed by the same things as me… I chuckle just a little. Life is too short. I don’t want to be bugged anymore.

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A quote to share

My husband found this quote not long ago and shared it with me. I still think of it regularly, not only when we are blissfully happy together but also when we have a tiff.  I thought I’d share it. I hope you enjoy it and can share it with others who mean so much.

There is nothing more powerful than love. No matter how great the mistake, how dire the outlook, how deeply rooted the problem, a sufficient realization of love can dissolve anything. No matter what you may be facing at this time, doesn’t it seem less significant when compared with the power of love?

-Mary Manin Morrissey

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