Finding balance in a chaotic world

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December 2017
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Stress

The Lesson of the Fence

As you can imagine, it gets pretty windy in Oklahoma, especially during the spring. There are tornadoes, of course, but we also have days of very strong straight line winds and these often do as much damage, if not more, than the tornadoes do. I remember one year, the straight line winds smashed the windows of cars inside a parking garage at a local mall. I couldn’t imagine coming out and seeing all that broken glass around your car, talk about stressful. Well one day we had strong straight line winds and as I was in the kitchen, I heard a loud crack in the back yard. Since we don’t have any trees there, I thought nothing of it. I figured a limb fell off one of the trees in my neighbor’s yard. Turns out, I was wrong. Read more »

It’s Policy

WorkersHow many times has a simple thing blown up into something ridiculous because people refuse to apply actual thought to the situation? I have found myself growing less tolerant of poor customer service from the places I do business with. I’m never belligerent or rude but I’m certainly not going away because “it is our policy.” A lot of this has to do with me reading sites like the Consumerist but also just the general degradation of competent help. I will say that probably 75% of the time any issue that I have is resolved in a timely and satisfactory manner. Unfortunately, that percentage used to be a lot higher just a few years ago. Why is that? Read more »

Big Issue in a Little Place

Have you ever been involved in running a group and things turn very political very quickly? Suddenly you are going from deciding the course of the group to breaking into factions and choosing sides. One group does something, the other responds. Both sides woo the neutral parties to their side and try to manipulate things in their favor. Soon, what is best for the organization is long forgotten and instead everyone is fighting for what is best for them. “The feuds are vicious because the stakes are so low” is a quote often attributed to this situation. It is certainly not a fun place to be, but what can you do about it? Read more »

One Step at a Time

StairsA few times a year I’m required to go to a conference or seminar for work. I need to arrange the flight, transportation, hotel, etc. Typically these things are no big deal, but I do find myself nervous and anxious about all of the preparations before the conference begins. I start to fret about what-if’s. What if my flight is cancelled, what-if there is a problem with my hotel room, how will I get to where I need to go, where will I eat, when should I leave to catch my return flight, and on and on. Since I apparently love to worry, I’ve had to come up with a way to deal with these irrational thoughts. Read more »

First Day of School

crayonsYesterday was Hope’s first day of school in first grade. I took the day off from work and we made a big day of it. We took her to school, had lunch with her, and picked her up afterwards. She had a lot of fun and is excited about the new year. It reminded me of what first days of school were like. Every year you had to face this large unknown all by yourself. What would your teacher be like, who would be in your classes, would you have friends to sit next to at lunch? I can remember feeling the stress and nervousness of so many unknowns. I thought about how we rarely experience that in adulthood, the closest thing being starting a new job. It is almost too bad as we lose the ability to adapt over time. Read more »