Monday Gets Lazy

Some days, no matter how hard we push ourselves, it seems that our body is just not willing to go any faster or work to its fullest and most efficient capacity.  We question the cause….are we getting older?  did we eat or drink the wrong thing?  do we need more sleep? are we getting sick?  Are we overly stressed?  Sometimes the question is ‘yes’ to at least one of the questions; but sometimes, there just isn’t any clue to what might solve the puzzle.  My Dad was a very wise man and I think he had the best diagnosis for this un-studied disease …. “The Can’t HelpIts”  ….You just can’t help feeling like you do….no cause and only one known cure.  By the way, I doubt if you will find the disease OR the cure listed in the Merck Manual; but it is definitely something real and the directions for curing it always works.  Today, I have the “Can’t HelpIts” and I am going to work on curing my illness!!  If you are experiencing the same disease today, please join me in the race to feel better—So, here’s the cure that has been passed down through the generations….

Monday Gets Lazy

That’s right…sometimes, it’s okay to just be lazy.  We push ourselves every day to get things done.  We race against the clock to try to finish everything within  our daily schedule parameters.  Gotta check off the items on our lists!!  We eat, drink and exercise within the guidelines of the medical communities insistence of what is good for us.  And, with an abundance of confusion, often what was good for us yesterday is today declared to be laden with carcinogens and the worst possible thing to be doing.  We search for some kind of medically approved and consistent balance in the path we follow to wellness.  Doctors don’t often prescribe “Do nothing today”.  I wonder if they’re afraid they would be sued for malpractice and the insurance companies would be obligated to cover the cost of us enjoying a day off.  Wouldn’t that be great to submit costs of what we did on our day of playing “hooky” from our normal crazy and stressful day?  However…..It would, in fact,  probably be far less expensive than the medicines or therapies our doctor prescribes!!

So, here’s your list of today’s activities:

  • Do nothing.
  • Do nothing.
  • Do nothing.
  • Take a nap.
  • Do more nothing.

Think you can handle it??!!  I bet you have a new love for my Monday mandatory list again, right?

And since, I’m always encouraging you to make a difference for others, why not drag a friend or family member along for this journey.  Being lazy is fun; but having someone else along on your journey makes it even better.  Probably gives you that verification that we sometimes need to be okay with something out of the norm.  Drag along a friend and suddenly everything is acceptable.

So, are you ready to start?

Won’t take you much to get revved up for THIS journey!  I’d like to leave you with a few words from my favorite author.  In the immortal words of Winnie the Pooh, when asked what Lazy means:

“It means just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear….and not bothering!”

 Hope you have a great day.

I know I will.

Let's go see what they caught!

You Matter!

Smiles, Nancy

Disclaimer:  If your place of employment is not real happy about your choice of being lazy today, please save this ‘lazy card’ for a day that better suits your needs….just promise me that you won’t let it expire!

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Monday Gets Confident

I have been recently evaluating my work related skill level and trying to assess how many things I can attach the word “Proficient” in my Resume.   It is a funny word to me as I think it has many boundaries that are defined personally by each person who uses it.  Defined by Webster, it means well advanced in an art, occupation, or branch of knowledge.  Synonyms include: accomplished, ace, adept, complete, crackerjack, educated, experienced, expert, good, great, master, practiced, professed, skilled, versed…..which kind of adds to more confusion of how to determine the measurement of someone’s skills that has included the word.  It seems if I say I am proficient in typing that I could be anywhere from just a good typist to a master typist….pretty big gap I think.

What I realized in trying to determine my own skill level as well as determine its meaning is that when it is used, it is really about someone trying to feel and project confidence about what they do.  Let’s talk about what we can do to feel “Proficient” in all the things we do and also helps others feel the same.

Monday Gets Confident

I think our confidence level rules so many things about us.  Our feelings can be elevated to new heights of accomplishment or we can sink to such pits that we don’t feel we are competent at anything.  Sometimes, it even fluctuates in a matter of moments.  We can be feeling really good about a job we completed at work; and suddenly, a co-worker or manager comes in and points out all the negative points and our confidence goes flying out the window!  Words are powerful tools and can sometimes be harmful.  I guess it is one of those human nature things that we sometimes open our mouths without thinking through what we allow to pour out.  I know that constructive criticism is needed at times, but it is important to give an unbiased judgment by indicating all the good stuff too.  It will go a long way in helping a person feel really great about what they contributed to the task at hand.  It also encourages us to make improvements and increase our level of “Proficiency”.

This not only applies in the workplace, but also in our personal lives as well.  Children need lots of guidance in their lives to do things correctly; but they also need to know that they are not doing everything wrong.  Spouses, friends, even our parents need that little bit of applause from time to time for daily routine tasks that might become mundane and also resented if they are not from time to time given at least a few moments of appreciation.

When was the last time you told your child how beautiful they were or maybe how proud you were of them that they could now make their own breakfast or even that you liked the friends they had chosen?  Does your mate make coffee every morning and you stagger to the kitchen to get your caffeine jolt without even acknowledging how delicious it might taste or that it helps you start each day a lot easier?  What about when you go to the grocery store, do you thank the person who bags your groceries?  Many people every day make our lives a little easier and we just become so accustomed to the tasks being done for us that we forget to even thank them.  Wouldn’t it be nice to boost their confidence level and let them know how “proficient” they are at what they do.  It only takes a moment and so little effort to do that!!

Are you ready to make a difference today?

Here’s what you do.

Each person that you come in contact, take a moment to find something about them that you can bestow some praise on them.

It doesn’t have to be anything profound…..and EVERYONE has a special thing about them that deserves some applause.

You will know that you have completed your mission when you see a smile come to their face.  You might even notice a slight change in their posture as the feeling of confidence straightens their spine.

And Hey! Don’t stop with Monday, do it tomorrow and the next day and every day of the rest of your life.

How better to help people during a time of a struggling economy where we are feeling we have somehow done something horrible to be in such difficult times.  We can blame it on the Republicans or the Democrats….whichever party preference you might lean…..but it doesn’t mean we can’t do something to make some changes.

Have a great day!

Let me know what your tally of smiles was today.

Here’s one to start you off.

Thank you for reading my Blog.  It puts a smile on my face every time someone leaves a comment or decides to be added to the list of followers.  I truly appreciate your support.  You Matter!…..and I Matter too!!

Smiles, Nancy

Monday Gets Healthy

I have been taking some medical tests in the last month or so to get caught up on some preventative healthcare that I had been putting off.  It has not been a pleasant experience some times and it is very time-consuming.  I am sick of being questioned and stuck and poked and well….you know the usual routine.  I have always hoped that they would some day come up with a process where you could just go through a walk thru or even better a drive thru type set up.  All your tests, scans, etc., could be taken care of in less than five minutes and your diagnosis and results would be printed out at an ATM kind of machine.   I just really don’t see why that is not a possibility??!!  Of course, mentioning to doctors about thoughts like this sets their hair on end….probably thinking of the multiple thousands of dollars they would lose if this ever happen.  George Jetson World where are you?

Despite the annoyance and my consumed time, all my test results came back within a pretty normal range and the end of the story is basically that I am pretty healthy.  With that knowledge, I am very relieved and thankful for such a good report.  I would like to offer some encouragement to others that might be putting off scheduling their routine checkups like I have been doing.  So, today……..

Monday Gets Healthy

In such a fast-paced world, we need to do everything we can to counteract some of the stresses that are all around us that are just impossible to avoid…..traffic, financial strains, national news and despair, kids….sometimes I even reach a point of over-abundance of stress that dealing with junk mail is even an annoyance for me.  If we moved to a deserted island, we could eliminate the majority of our daily stresses, but that’s not on my option possibilities right now.  I am envious if it might be on yours.  For those of us who must ‘keep marching on’, I would like to offer some encouraging words for you to take note of your current lifestyle and access what changes you might need to make to be a bit more healthy and balance your daily stresses.

First, I would definitely encourage you to take advantage of any insurance-covered preventative care that might be available to you.  Often, catching something in its early stages can make a world of difference for the end results.  It’s not the most appealing thing to do; but it is the smartest thing to do for yourself and your family too.  If you don’t have healthcare, there are still affordable options out there if you do a little digging that you can take advantage of for yourself and your family.

Next, and I think probably the most important, is to assess your general lifestyle choices.  Do you get enough rest and sleep?  Do you eat a proper diet?  Do you have habits like smoking or over-indulging in alcohol that could be changed or at least reduced?  Do you get enough exercise?  All of these questions or a personal thing and can only be answered by you……truthfully that is!!  You can tell your doctor anything that you would like them to hear; but you need to be accountable for the truth for yourself.

Are you now….Overwhelmed?!!  Depressed?!!  Frustrated?!!  Okay, it’s time for another one of those infamous lists.  Make a list starting with what you think is the most important thing to change.  For me, it is diet.  I have been trying to lose a few pounds and also eat healthier.  It’s not easy to change just that little bit; but if you keep making little changes slowly, you will start to see the positive results of your efforts.  It feels good too.  I have set very small goals for myself and when I meet that goal, I pat myself on the back and then I set another one.

So…..today is a wonderful day to start your new life.

Let me hear it…..what day is it?…..It’s Monday Gets Healthy!!

All you have to do is JUST START WITH MONDAY.

The rest of the week, you just repeat Monday’s efforts.

So….don’t you want to be healthy?  Don’t you want to feel better?

And most importantly, don’t you owe that to yourself?

You’re special!  You’re important!  You Matter!

Many hopes sent your way that you will believe this and realize that it is worth all the effort that you put forth.

Have a great day.

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Respectful of the Elderly

This is a picture of a sweet little human being that I pass by almost daily.  If you look closely, at the very end of the sidewalk alley, you can barely see her little being in the shadow of the trees.  This is a true representation of what I perceive to be her daily feeling of existence….just a tiny little speck on this earth!  I took the picture far away because even though I don’t know her, I respect her and want to protect her from harm.  Each day when I pass her, I call out “Good Morning” to her; but most days, I get no reply.  Only rarely, do I hear this tiny little voice, a sound that would be the voice of a hummingbird if they could talk, reply “good morning”.  So far, I have only heard it twice.  And, each time, I feel myself lifted as if on wings and I have to restrain myself from running to her and hugging her and thanking her for the gift she gives me.

I know she has put up walls because of being fearful of our undependable community situation and the harm that come from “letting strangers in”.  Each time she responds, I feel that I have given her a little security to hold onto that times will get better.

I am not sure “her story” but somehow I feel it is filled with many years of loneliness and sadness and fear.  However, I have conceived hopes for her that she has a family that will take care of her one day when her little body becomes even more fragile and frail.  And that they come to visit her at least once a week even now.  My mind’s visions includes them bringing her flowers that she can plant in her well-tended garden that she is bent over every day, watering and nurturing with love and enjoyment.  I project that she has grandchildren too that hug her and sit next to her as she quietly reads them a story.  These are the bubble thoughts that go through my mind each day as I pass….I don’t want anyone to pop them!!!

Unfortunately, I hear the words of John Prine’s old 70’s song creep through,  “Old People just grow lonesome, Waiting for someone to say, “Hello in there, Hello” and they start to pierce my bubble with each encounter.

Do you ever pass someone who gives you this feeling?  Maybe it’s a neighbor or someone sitting at a park bench waiting for a bus?  Maybe, it’s even someone that is part of your family that you have put on the bottom of your list to visit?  So, today, here is what you can do…..

Monday Gets Respectful of the Elderly

Giving less than 10 seconds of your day can make a difference in someone’s day.  There are many elderly that are very lonely and would feel like a million bucks if they felt someone cared about them and took the time to acknowledge their presence and “throw” them a smile or a “hello”.  These lyrics by Prine keep echoing in my head and I think they say it best……..

“So, if you’re walking down the street sometimes

And spot some hollow, ancient eyes

Please don’t pass ’em by and stare

As if you didn’t care, instead say Hello in there,

Hello.”

They Matter….and You Matter too!

This is a video from You Tube that I hope “imbeds” in your head the need to make a difference and show the elderly that we care.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfwGkplB_sY&feature=em-share_video_user

Happy Monday!

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets To be A Good Listener

A blank page in front of you is so daunting……….

You think of all the words you know and somehow you can’t fit them together to make a single sentence.  Is it that we have TOO much to say?!!  Or…nothing at all.   I started feeling like the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz without a brain as I sat here trying to decide what topic Monday would bring.

As I was scratching my head with “nary a thought”, my sweet dog, Tramp, came and laid his head on my lap and I realized how, with only a vocabulary of 25 or so words, he was amazingly able to communicate very clearly.  He is a friend who tells me he loves me without speaking a word.  Perhaps, that is what us two-legged creatures  have lost.  The ability to be gentle in our communication and show others how we feel….without texts or emails or photoshop-ed pictures or a video on YouTube!!

I remember watching my parents, who were married for 55 years before one of them passed.  They would look at each other in a way that you knew without a shadow of a doubt that they loved each other, and their hearts would be together forever.  No words…..just loving looks and smiles.  No fancy gifts….but rather daily demonstrations that they cared about the other.  “Giving and Taking” was an ever revolving cycle that passed from one to the other.  They did it with such ease and loving energy.   You felt if you stood between them that you might be zapped by an invisible ray of love that would emit like an old sci-fi flick might demonstrate with lightning bolts.

I need to practice that kind of demonstration of caring more often.  We all get so anxious to “tell our own stories” that we forget to listen to what others have to say.  And thereby, really showing them that we care about the special person that they are and what they have to share.  It seems Good Listeners are hard to find.  OK….here’s your Monday challenge.

 Monday Gets to be a Good Listener.

When someone is talking to you today…..don’t think about your own stories or moments that you have experienced that match theirs.  Instead….just listen and comment about them.  Let them know, at that very moment, that you care only about them and what they have to say 100%.  Think this sounds easy??!!  Good Luck!  You’re human and you will find your tongue is hurting by the end of the day from biting it to keep from muttering your own exciting tale.  However…what you will find is that you don’t walk away feeling you only got part of their story.  Instead, you will leave knowing them a little better and they will feel that they are very important and that they matter to you.  And….that’s really what it’s all about, right?  If we could live today and every day like that, the world would be a much better place.

So….at day’s end, maybe stop to reflect how you feel.

I hope you feel you have made someone’s day a little brighter just by listening.

Didn’t cost you a dime either!

I hope that you realize that You Matter too.

Your unselfishness and humbleness are gifts that you can share any day…not just Monday.

Make Monday special……just like you!

 Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Historical

Have you realized that as you are cruising around during each day that you are passing buildings or trees or houses or structures that are filled with history…some are 50+ years old, some 100+ years old….some even more advanced in age.  Don’t you wish they could talk?  I decided to share with a few that I came across today.  They are all part of history and should be given the respect they deserve to have survived so long.

This sign indicates this road area was part of the Route 66 trail (now known as Santa Monica Blvd in Los Angeles).  Route 66 served as a major path for those who migrated west, especially during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, and it supported the economies of the communities through which the road passed. People doing business along the route became prosperous due to the growing popularity of the highway.  Next to the sign is an old neon sign that has its own history for the early 60s, a well-known donut stop in L.A.

Here’s the gates of the studio area that is today known as The Lot.  The studios were built in 1920 and in 1928 they were known as the Pickford-Fairbanks Studios where classics like The Thief of Bagdad and Robin Hood were filmed.  In 1933, Lucille Ball played a slave girl in her first movie, Roman Scandals.  Since that time it has had actors like Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Frank Sinatra, Marlon Brando, Laurence Olivier, Eddie Murphy, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock and many others stroll thru these gates to create the Hollywood magic of movies, TV and sound recordings.  Sadly, a big section of this amazing walk in history is now just a pile of dirt as it makes room for space to build more technologically-updated space and creates a venue for the next generation of talent of Hollywood.

Can’t come to Hollywood without visiting the infamous Pink’s Hot Dogs.  A landmark on LaBrea since 1939 when it was just a large wheeled push cart and hot dogs sold for 10 cents.  It has changed a bit since the beginning days—hot dogs are now $3.45; but still in the same place and still draws crowds every day.  You can go by here at 10 in the morning or 10 at night and there is ALWAYS a line waiting to partake of their scrumptious hot dogs!

A favorite of mine is the old Charlie Chaplin Studios built around 1917 when the area was nothing but acres and acres of orange groves.  “The Little Tramp” kept his movie crew busy over the next two decades creating classics like Modern Times, City Lights and The Great Dictator.  Now, the lot is the home of another mark in history—Jim Henson Productions, which gave us the beloved Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and the other Muppets.

What an amazing conglomerate of many interesting and groundbreaking moments in history.  As we look back, we wonder what life must have been like in this area in the early 1900s.  Hundreds of orange trees growing everywhere.  Some of the eucalyptus trees in this area look like they are even hundreds of years old.  Amazing times for sure!  Difficult times too! There are a lot of bungalows around these historical landmarks that were built by the studios to house the actors.  Some of the places have nice patios in the back that were once areas where they kept a few horses for the actors to ride to the studios.  How different in a town that now boasts it has more cars registered in the county than people.

It’s important to stop and appreciate these relics that are around us.  I’m sure you have your own historical places in the town where you live. We need to take care of these special places and show them the respect they deserve for withstanding many “battles” in their lifetime.

 So Monday Gets Historical.

Take time to appreciate the old structures and their beauty.

Many amazing craftsman’s art is being preserved for future generations to appreciate and experience.

Look at nature’s creations too that continue to reach to the sky.

Within walking distance, I am sure you can find many treasures.

So take a walk.  See the beauty.   Experience days gone by.  And along the way take time to remember your own history and the “good ole days”

Hope it’s a history-appreciation Monday for you.

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday gets Thankful for the Memories

When I was walking my dog, Tramp, yesterday, I realized something interesting about myself.  By writing this Blog each week, it makes me stop to reflect about my life and makes me more appreciative of where I am in my journey today.  I know the many thoughts cross my mind daily; but writing them down adds value and nourishment to their existence and gives them a feeling of abundance.

I have always been one to appreciate small things; but somehow, every little thing I encounter now, seems so much more important.  I wonder what would happen if we allowed school-aged children to have a time in their daily lessons to reflect about their day.   No grade to be given or even any kind of judgment or revealing to others….just a moment to acknowledge their difficulties or happiness for the day.  I bet we would have a society of much more well-balanced individuals.

Do you take time to write your thoughts in a journal?  Probably everyone had a diary at some point in their lives.  I wish I had done more of it.  There are things when I was younger that I have just vague memories of that I would like to recall more details.  Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone kept journals?  If my Grandmother had kept a journal, I would love to be able to read it now.  She lived to be 96 and told tales of her life of leaving Virginia in a covered wagon to move to Tennessee.  What an adventure!   What a great treasure it would have been to have something like that to pass onto other generations! Hmmmmm….well, I didn’t take a covered wagon; but I did cross the country to move to California.  Guess that counts for a bit of adventure too…And I have pictures to go along with the documenting of the journey.

Perhaps, you should consider starting the habit of taking notes of your daily life.  Maybe it will help you realize how many good things come your way.  Or perhaps, it will be something that you can read ten years from now and recall some really special moments.  Or maybe, your children or your grandchildren will read it some day and “get to know you” a little better.  I bet iPhones even have an App for the process!   Whatever you do, don’t let the precious moments get lost.

Let’s see what can we call this Monday??

I know…let’s call it

Monday Gets Thankful for the Memories

Hope you take the time to reflect on some of the special times that have happened in your life.  Maybe call someone that you haven’t talked to in ‘many moons’ to reminisce about some good memories.

It’s another wonderful Monday….Make it a good memory!!

Smiles, Nancy