Monday, September 24, 2007

Another point of view...

Are you in a rut? Do you ever have trouble moving forward? Recently I had been in a rut at work, and then I saw a picture online. A picture of the spoon bending scene in the matrix.

This scene is about your point of view on reality.

Do not try to bend the spoon, that's impossible.
Instead only try to realize the truth
What is the truth?
That there is no spoon.
Then you'll see, that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.

Have things changed at work for me? Absolutely, I am doing the same job, with a different point of view, and things are going great! But it's really just a change of my point of view.

If things are not going well for you somewhere, changing the situation will not change the problems. 99% of the time the problem is not with others, if you have a problem at work and change jobs, you will have the same problem, if you have a problem at home and change homes, you will have the same problems. "It is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself."

I choose

Last week in my training class the teacher read us a story about a man who every day chose to be happy. He said he could choose to be happy or choose to be stressed. He chose to be happy.

Every day this guy chose to be happy, and even when he was recovering from having fallen from a tower and needing metal rods put into his back, he still chose to be happy.

Our world, every day is what we choose for it to be. The same input is going to come at us whether we ask for it or not, that is not our world. The input does not decide who we are and what we do with our life. It is just external stimulus. Everything that comes at us from the time we are born until death offers us a choice. It is those choices that not only affect our mood right now, but who we are as people. It's those choices that allow two twins to grow up in the same environment with the same input and turn out to be very different people.

Now, the first thought I have every morning is, "Today is going to be a good day" And you know what, it is. It's almost always a good day, not because only good things happen to me, but because I decide that's what I'm going to have. I'm going to be happy because I enjoy happiness.

It's funny how the simple act of smiling can make me feel better, even when I don't feel right. I've taken to walking away when things start getting bad. I'll think of a time when things were exceptionally good and smile, and whatever bad thoughts I was having are replaced with good thoughts.

I choose to be happy. And things have been going well.

Is that all?

Yesterday morning I ran my last really long run before the marathon. I had it scheduled for 20 miles, and I finished.

When I made it to the half-way point, I felt really good. I decided to stretch it and run an extra street, which out in the country always seems to be a mile apart. Suddenly a 20 mile run had became 22 miles.

I felt great. I was right on schedule and I had walked even more than I planned to. I was running well, especially considering I didn't wear my MP3 player. Since the marathon isn't allowing them, I decided to train without it. This is the first long run I've done without music being pumped into my ears, there's a big difference between running with a pounding beat in your head and running with the sound of wind, pounding footsteps, and breathing.

At 5 AM in total darkness running country roads, it's scary. Every time the wind blew the drying corn stalks my mind flashed back to the aliens in the movie "Signs". Had an animal as harmless as a deer peaked out of the corn I expect that I would have died on the spot from a heart attack. It didn't matter which trick to control worry I tried, I just couldn't get the aliens out of my head. I was grateful when the sun came up and the corn seemed a lot more like corn and a lot less like an alien infested field.

Unlike normal, I brought my cell phone with me on this run. With about 4 miles to go I called home to tell Erin that I was going to make it. It was as much to keep my confidence up as it was to assure her that I'm still coming. I'd been gone for 4 hours already, and she hadn't heard anything from me, so I wanted to assure her that I was fine. At that point I was sore, but still running fairly well. The last 2 miles of my run however, my heart started beating much harder. Running just a few steps made it feel like my chest was pounding too hard, and I had a hard time getting into a rhythm. The most I was able to run during those two miles was a quarter mile. It didn't matter though. My goal was to finish this run, and I did.

October 21st is close, and after chasing the same goal for 13 years, I'm about to achieve it.

Friday, September 21, 2007

I love office chairs

I love office chairs. They are soft and supportive. Tall enough for my long legs, and relaxing enough to tilt back in. I can sit up and really get down to work, or sit back and reflect on life, and think.

Office chair, office chair, what can't you do?

You can roll from room to room swivel for my own ease of use, or the kids entertainment.

If I had enough money I would replace every chair in my house with an office chair. There would be four of them at my kitchen table, it could be the boardroom, where we just happen to eat all of our meals. The breakfast counter would have two more. I'd have one in front of the piano, and one in front of the computer. I'd even go as far as getting an extra one to sit in the toy room so the kids could use it to read books next to the bookshelf.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I need garbage bags

I'm a list person. I've always been a list person. It was drilled into me as a child. If we were going shopping, we had to have a list of what we needed. We had a grocery list, and a list of the price that things were on sale for at each store.

Then I had my list of chores.

About two years ago I started hearing about GTD. For months I heard about this new craze. It was everywhere I was looking.

Finally, I borrowed a book, the book, on GTD which is Getting Things Done by David Allen, and wham!

This was it!!! Someone who finally fully understood the benefit of lists.

I had to try it, do it, absorb it, become GTD.

I may not be a loud GTD evangelist, and there are a lot of them out there. But I am an avid follower. And even when I occasionally get off-track. It's easy to get back on track.

The biggest benefit I have with my new list making schemes is that I've gotten enough of a grasp on my life that I'm finally able to think about things at a higher level than just "I need garbage bags." And at that time, my life had practically become overwhelmed with that level of profound thought..

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Overrated Business Books

I was checking my 50+ normal blogs this morning and stumbled across an interesting article about the 10 Overrated Business Books (and what to read instead). I chuckled. The title was great, but some of the books were pegged dead on too. Many of the business books I read leave me wondering how anyone would recommend that book to someone else.

Steven Covey and the 7 Habits of whatever has a few good points, but reading the book is torturous. I would rather jump into a ravine filled with broken bottles. It's kept me from reading the 8th habit, because who would jump into the same ravine twice?

Who Moved my Cheese is another interesting one. The book quickly says, change happens, get used to it. What do you need 80 pages of crap for? That's the only message. Change Happens, get used to it.

There have been others that were about the same. Business The Marine Corps way. Business aren't run the way the book suggests so it won't work.

And many of the millionaire style books that I have read were also crap. Start your own business, buy stocks in the great companies, buy property. If I would have done any of that, I would now be broke. Oh wait, I am. The only way those authors got rich was in selling their crappy books.

Currently there are three books that I think everyone should read. How to Win Friends and Influence People, Getting Things Done, and Atlas Shrugged. These three books are the most useful books that I have read. I hope you have a chance to read them and enjoy them.

Buy them from Amazon here if you are interested, or check them out from your local library.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Sleep what's that?

Lately I've been a little worn down. It's amazing that the more I do the more I want to do and the more I put on my own plate. If it were up to me I would stay awake for days on end in order to get things done, and then after I were done with everything on my list I would immediately double the size of my list and need to go for another 4 days without sleeping.

Anyhow, I've been swamped with lots of things and am now getting the hang of the extra load that I have, so I'll be more consistent with blogging.

Leave me comments and let me know what you are interested in hearing about.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Distraught Sox Fan

Kenny Williams and Ozzie Guillen have managed to gut most of the good talent on the White Sox and turn them from World series champions to worst in baseball in just two short years. I'm excited about the extension that Ozzie Guillen got today. Turning a team around like that deserves another 4 year contract.

At least I won't have to waste any time watching baseball on TV for the next few years.

The downfall of the fist bump

The fist bump has fallen a long way. It has become so commonplace that the bears in this Charmin commercial are doing it now.