Action Stations!

Action is the foundational key to all success – Pablo Picasso

now clock

The best time to take action

Pablo Picasso – he brings up such images that he must be an exciting fellow, right? This quote seems so obvious and boring but because it’s him, I will use it. Plus of course it means something to me today. Blogging has made me more aware of many things – which is always a good thing. One of those is my moods over time. Weeks where I am subdued (for me anyway, just call me Tigger!) and weeks where I am the most energetic person on the planet. As I prefer that last one and consider it a form of success, I have decided to ‘fake it until I make it’. By being that person of action, even though I don’t feel like it, hopefully I will find my next ‘thing’ which grabs my attention and I will be off. I read recently that to be happy, you need a project and a community. You are my community (you’re low maintenance, guys, thanks!) so now I am on to projects.

I am soon going to be taking some major ‘action’. I am gathering my holiday leave and some serious savings to go and spend 5 days at a retreat in France (from here in Sydney) with the great and wonderful Barbara Sher (please look her up). She is a no bullshit, hilarious lady who will help you find ‘success’ (achieve the essence of your dreams), even when “you have no goals, no character and are often in a lousy mood”. Barbara is an arch enemy of magic thinking, positive thinking and chanting slogans.

She says she sees people like ‘gardens’, each one a genius in their own right because we are all unique and have our own way of seeing and doing things which nobody else on the planet can do. We deserve it to the rest of the planet to spend time doing what we love so that we can develop those innate skills and share them with the world. Take action!

So I am hoping she will see through me and sort out this grab bag of a person! It is thanks to her already that I am blogging, meeting you people and realising that it’s OK to be a Scanner; a jack of all trades and master of none. She calls us Ideas Factories, I guess as we can link our different interests together to come up with ideas in the real world. Where do you find a suitable career for one of those?? Diva-ish art director at an Ad Agency? Entrepreneur or inventor? I may not necessarily find a new career but will hopefully find a group of people who will be lifelong friends (10 people only on this retreat) and hold each other accountable for following up on making things happen.

Anyway, back to the quote. Who doesn’t have things, ideas, must do’s in their heads? And how often do we take action on them? Or on what percentage of them? This is where Barbara comes in. She has also been called the Resistance Whisperer. She knows full well how you get on a high with an idea, think you’re brilliant and then crash and think you’re stupid. She talks about the third phase, which is where you get back to normal and go find all the detailed notes you hopefully made while on your high and pick them up again. She says it’s a ‘sin’ not to share your gifts and take action on them. Do what you love, even if only for 5 minutes a day. Isolation is the dream killer so have someone else hold you accountable to do what you love.

To be continued…..

 

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Criticise at your peril

Don't ever run out in the road again!

Don’t ever run out in the road again!

This little post is a reblog in a way of someone else’s words. Or perhaps it’s just a very long quote from a Master!

Yesterday I watched a Barbara Sher video on YouTube where she says to be very careful of giving criticism. “One piece of criticism is not overcome by 20 forms of praise. First of all you might not know what you are talking about and secondly even if later down the track it turns out that you are right, they won’t remember what you said. They will remember the hurt.” Wise words indeed from one of my favourite people (more on her later, but I am spending over two months pay soon to go and meet her!!).

The bit that spoke loudest is that ‘maybe you won’t know what you are talking about’. There have certainly been times that I have gotten the wrong end of the stick and have maybe put in my two cents worth to an organisation and then been politely responded to in way which showed I had it all wrong. Ouch! but no biggie – I can do failure and sorry really well. A heartfelt apology and we are all on our way. I don’t hang on to my failures too long – too scatty to remember them, luckily. And of course sometimes ‘you have to learn to accept the apology you never got’. I like that one too. Got a few of those under my belt, sadly.

What about the times when you don’t criticise or give feedback, don’t speak up for yourself? Is it because you know you are speaking to someone unable to hear you or because you fear the venom that will pour out of you once you let loose? Nobody wants venom inside. That leads to cancer, right? So should you speak?

And again, if that venom is somehow misdirected, you will only end up feeling bad, especially if you hurt the other person and have any kind of compassion in you. Time to consider what you say before you open up. In some cases I choose not to ‘stand up for’ myself, no matter how much I am invited to. And in others I speak where clearly it is not wanted. But that is tomorrow’s post….

How to know the difference?

This quote I just found on Pinterest sure helps!

He has the right to criticize, who has a heart to help.

 

Eternal Newbies

The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there – L.P. Harley

rollerskate toddler

So what? I ask myself, things move on and what’s gone is gone, irrelevant isn’t it?

However it is relevant because we learn from past experiences, hoping that this ‘knowledge‘ will serve us well in the future i.e. the here and now. Our brains get wired in this way. Unfortunately many things we’ve learned in the past just would not apply today. I am not even talking about caveman times. The changes in our own lifetimes are astounding. What worked for us 10 years ago or even last year may not get the same results today. And many careers are having to change because of it. I’ve heard that what Uni students learn in first year computer studies, is probably outdated by the time the course ends. It really helps nowadays to learn fast and think on your feet! Continue reading

Candy to a Blogger

No one would remember the good Samaritan if he’d only had good intentions. He had money as well – Margaret Thatcher

This is the second time I’ve used a Margaret Thatcher (R.I.P) quote and again I realise I have to disagree with it to a point. See Twice the Battle. They say that any publicity is good publicity or that the only thing worse than people saying bad stuff about you is people not taking about you at all. At least she’s still being remembered and perhaps so will we bloggers be remembered in some way.  Continue reading

Open mouth long enough to change feet

Keeping your mouth shut

Keeping your mouth shut. Quite often for some of us we only open our mouths long enough to change feet. Of course our mouth only opens when our brain tells it to.  And the brain has different states. Present, calm and focused, on autopilot or ‘off with the fairies’. Then you have to factor in mood, sensitivity and excitability and you never know what your mouth will come out with when it opens.

In the last week I came across a hideous situation where Continue reading

Learning to Write in Public

This lady was on Freshly Pressed today and deservedly so. But I am reblogging this post of hers today as I feel she crawled inside my head and wrote what she saw there. Is it just me or do these words resonate with all of us bloggers? Emma

Image

Writing is a delicate business. On one hand, it’s a very private act—a solitary pursuit that requires the writer to crawl inside their brain and camp out there for a while. To stew in their own juices while an idea comes to fruition. On the other hand, it’s a public act—an act of creation meant for an audience. A writer writes so that someone will read it. There’s a strange dichotomy at play from the beginning. It is a private act for the public art. 

I’m sure it plays out differently for every writer, but for me, writing is very much a lonely endeavor. Not in the bad way, necessarily, although I find I write more when I spend a lot of time alone with my brain. When I have no one else to talk to, I suppose my brain talks to itself. Usually, I have an idea paddling about…

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How to attract the creative

It is better by far to speak with a person than to a person – J.D. Boatwood

Speak with you darling

Ouch! I am guilty of this one. Sometimes I go into warp speed, all excited about my latest subject and off I go, like a cork out of post Grand Prix champagne. There is no ‘with’ about it. The unwitting listener goes through Continue reading

Watch how you do it

Weighing it up

It’s a fairly regular occurrence it seems. You see it on TV and in the movies and you even do it yourself. You have an item you need to place somewhere else, say a piece of paper or an item for the laundry basket. Unfortunately you are not close to the bin or basket, but you are within throwing distance you reckon. So what happens next and what does this say about you? There is even an app or a game for your phone to chuck paper balls in the bin. It’s so satisfying, a little win in your day if it gets there. A little excitement, a little risk. A little finality. Think how nearly all sports involve getting a ball of some sort into a final resting place. Final, done, no questions asked (usually). Some certainty in this otherwise very uncertain life.

Anyway, there I was this morning, throwing dirty sexy lingerie (I’m joking, boring cotton underpants) into the laundry basket….. I assessed the distance, the wind speed, how hard I would need to scrunch the undies so they wouldn’t unravel in flight and slow themselves down. I looked at the direction, considered underarm and overarm throws and other items they might bounce off on the way. I aimed carefully at the basket and….

Waste paper

Do we often take this much care in life when doing things? Do we prepare ourselves for ‘flight’, decide how we will make our next move, aim ourselves in the right direction and give ourselves just the right propulsion, not too much, not too little? Or do we take no risk at all and simply walk over to the basket, using perhaps more energy than we need to do the same work and without the excitement? What if we throw the item and fail? What if we miss? Are we resigned, laugh, decide it was worth the fun and then walk over? Do we leave it for next time we are passing by or hope someone else will clean up after us?

There seem to be signs everywhere about who we are, how we do things, what mood we are in. We manifest in every little thing we do and I mean every thing, even as simple as this. Take a look at how you do things and wonder perhaps if there’s another way…

As for me I missed the basket. I forgot to factor in my unco-ordination. It was off to the right and fell short of the basket. All the more reason to try again next time 🙂

paper slam dunk

 

What an extraordinary woman!

Anais Nin

I have finally put two and two together this morning. I searched Pinterest for Anais Nin as I know that I love her quotes. What an extraordinary woman! What I realised, when images of Henry and June (the movie) came up for her name, is that I had seen her character in a movie also and that she is a beautiful, erotic soul as well as a great thinker. When I saw the movie, rented from Blockbuster, it was one of those awkward moments when you get some friends and your parents over and the movie turns out to be soft porn. The room falls silent throughout. My mother afterwards commented that it perhaps wasn’t appropriate and one guest whispered as he left that he kept a cushion on his lap the whole time! Great memories. I have since bought the movie so I might have to watch it again, now that I know how much I love Anais’ mind 🙂

 

Erotica Anais Nin

Anyway, I digress. I also don’t remember coming across this quote before, but perhaps the time is right so it speaks to me now. I can certainly look back on all the ‘states’ I have become during my life – embarassed kid, anxious student, uptight parent, depressed housewife, and see that they were necessary but not something I want to hang onto. Hopefully we distil the best of what we became, learn from the worst of what we became and slowly come to a kind of peace as we mature, with acceptance and knowledge of how best to enjoy what life brings. Is there any state I have tried to remain in? Absolutely! I treasure my days and moment where happiness bubbles to the surface. They don’t hang around so I couldn’t elect to stay that way. I can only be aware, recognise and appreciate them when they appear.

May you also recognise and enjoy the good times while they are happening. Maybe now is one of them 🙂

Rosamund Pike