Why won’t my bus pass work?

1101C145-8D70-4953-8BC0-63FBAC5AE605

Yesterday, I was rushing to catch the train as usual.

I scanned my train card and tried to go through the turn style. Negative, the turn style was not moving. Once again, I scanned my train card, and tried to quickly pass through the turn style. AGAIN, it was not working. The night before I had added money to my card, so WHY wasn’t it working. I scanned the card “one more time,” and the turn style would not budge.

At this point, I had to move away from the turn style. It was embarrassing, all of the busy commuters looking irritated that I was “holding up the line.”

WHAT was the PROBLEM!

I looked at my train card…  It was NOT my train card. It was my devotional card for Saint Leopoldo of Padua. I visited his shrine in Italy a few years ago. He is known as the Saint who could heal you of your illness. At his shrine, there was a room full of photos that family members had sent of loved ones that they asked Saint Leopoldo to pray and heal them. He had a small room where he would hear people’s confessions. I bought this devotional card and always carry it with me.

So, I did have to SMILE!

This was Saint Leopoldo’s CLEVER way of telling me to slow down. Time for a trip to Padua and Abano Terme. For those of you who do not know, Abano Terme has hot springs and mud baths. People go here to rest and rejuvenate.

Sometimes in life, we need a SIGN to take care of ourselves!

Thank you, Saint Leopoldo. We have a three day holiday coming up, I will rest!

A daisy –> He loves me, he loves me not!

Lately, I’ve noticed that family, co-workers, strangers have been temperamental and on edge. Wasn’t there an eclipse lately? I don’t know much about astrology; however, sometimes it feels like there is a strong force taking place in the Universe making people super moody and setting us up for change in our lives. It’s very powerful, we KNOW when it is at work.

This week as I was dealing with a lot of temperamental people, I had a funny thought. As they were ranting and raving about their terrible life, others giving the cold shoulder, and a few just spewing angry thoughts, a DAISY popped in my mind.

As they were going on, I imagined myself with a vase full of daisys. For each person that was being mean or rude, rather than take on their anger, I “chose” to take a daisy out of my vase. For each petal I pulled off, I would say, “I love you, I love you not… I love you, I love you not…”

I was doing this in my mind while the person was ranting and raving. I found it to be very therapeutic, because I determined that when I got to the VERY LAST petal, THAT would determine whether I kept listening to this person OR politely terminated the hurtful conversation.

It worked! For the unhelpful Home Depot guy, he landed on a “love you not petal!” I politely moved on from him. For a family member, they got lucky, the petal landed on “love you,” so I listened longer. The clerk at the DMV got a “love you,” but a few people in line got a “love you not,” they were saying such mean comments about the clerk, angry that they had to stand in line. Finally, for the neighbor, they got a “love you NOT petal.” Same old dim conversation, nothing ever uplifting – I was DONE!

It’s amazing how we can change our day around with music, exercise, soulful thinking and just a great sense of humor. I could see Seinfeld having a field day with this topic. I miss that show!

Angry people, watch out, you are not ruining my day. I have a truck load of daisy’s to deal with YOU.

Ash Wednesday… What are you doing for Lent?

E17412B4-8286-49D9-8DC5-DF802C4B0E86Yesterday, while at the coffee shop, a young man came and sat next to me. I looked over and thought, “I should tell him he has some black dirt on his forehead.” As I was contemplating how to politely reveal this to him, I remembered it was Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent.

So, I smiled and said, “Oh, it looks like you stopped by church.”

To which he replied, “Actually, at the University there was a booth and I was able to  stop by there without going to church.”

Interesting, so the Catholic church was making it easier to participate in Ash Wednesday by setting up a booth, knowing that people have busy schedules. Good idea!

Next, I noticed that he had this small journal that he was writing in. I couldn’t help it, I had to comment. It was so small it made me think he was a spy or a writer taking field notes.

So, I said, “I love your small journal, might I ask what you are using it for?”

He said, “I bought it for Lent, I’m going to use it as my daily GRATITUDE journal.”

What a great idea! Most people give something up for Lent and they preface it with “I’m going to TRY and give sweets up, etc.” To me, if you are using the word “try” than you have already failed.

I told this fellow, I liked his gratitude journal much better. I believe in the power of positivity.

He smiled, I smiled, and we wished each other a wonderful day!

It is Lent, I am grateful for meeting this young man who brought “joy” to my day.

What are you grateful for today?

Puzzles, brain teasers, word mazes, crosswords, and more…

Puzzle book 1I was looking at books, nothing in particular just “seeing” what was out there. As it was Sunday, I saw some people doing the crossword puzzle in the newspaper. I’m not good at crossword puzzles, I never seem to know the answers to the cryptic clues they give. Out of 50, I might get five right, which is very disappointing. I always give up.

Maybe, because I was thinking of crosswords, when I went to the books in the sale isle, I came across this “Puzzle Collection” book. Normally, I would give it a glance, nothing more. I saw the dreaded crossword picture on the front cover, but the words “puzzle collection,” caught my attention. I love puzzles. Both the physical ones you put together and the ones where you have to use your mind. So, I slowly took a peek in the book hoping it was more than word mazes, crosswords and sudoku.

I was not disappointed. In fact, as I was flipping through it, I got excited. The book had all sorts of interesting challenges. Lately, I have long boring train rides, this book would keep me busy.

Take a look, this was a fun one, “INTERNATIONAL SPY TRAVELER?!” I was on board with that. I felt like I was becoming “James Bond’s” travel agent.

Puzzle book 2

Then there was this one.

Puzzle Book 3

I have to say, “I was hooked!” Had to get this book. Better than crosswords, for me anyhow.

THEN I thought, I’ll get so engrossed in a puzzle that I will miss my stop to go home! If I took Amtrak, I could end up in San Francisco or New York. The book was worth the risk!

It’s good to challenge our minds.

2018 – HAPPY NEW YEAR! A new year to accomplish things.

ADB6FBCB-691D-4463-8C27-D5CD5DA4241AI’m excited about moving into 2018! How about you?

How do you sum up 2017:  life changing, goals realized, figuring it out, really tough, adventurous, quiet, magical…?

As I ponder what 2017 meant for me, I am thinking about 2018.

There are 4 quarters in a year. In business, we look at the year, then we break it down into quarters and monthly/weekly/daily goals, so that by the end of the year we are on target for reaching our goals.

75282AD3-8D79-4554-8E4D-44869419B5D1

Personal lives are the same. We accomplish more if we write down a plan and try to stick to it. Some years I am good at this, some years I have thoughts in my mind of what I want to accomplish, but the thoughts seem to stay there, because…. THAT’S JUST IT, the word “because” holds me back.

So, this year, 2018 is about tackling the word, “because.” It’s time to think like an Olympian enough with the “because.”

Two years ago, my College friend (Dave, Life In A Word) suggested we challenge ourselves and create a Blog. We both enjoy writing. The catch was that we had to commit to Blogging once a week for one year!  We shook hands, no turning back.

Now, two years later, Dave and I can confidentially say, “we are Bloggers.” We didn’t let the word “because” stop us. We committed!

2018 starts tomorrow! I am thinking and planning.

For today, I want to head to the gym, but the word “because (it’s too cold outside)” is already coming to my mind. You see how that word “because” causes problems.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Great post on removing friction! Go for the GOLD!

IMG_1601We’ve all been there, we are trying to make progress on our goals, but we feel there is too much “friction” around us. I’ve been feeling that way, I even looked outside last night to see if there was a Full Moon going on. I noticed the days are getting shorter already, summer is almost over. BUT Fall means we are in the “home stretch.” The count down to December 31 is approaching. WHAT will I still accomplish in 2017?

As I was focusing on this BIG question, I saw an email come in from a fellow Blogger named, “Tynan,” writing about “Removing Friction.” I’ve been following him for a few years. His message today was right on target, he talked about getting rid of FRICTION. There MUST be a full moon, you see he was feeling “angst” too!

He’s a goal oriented guy, always trying to improve his life or situation. I was raised that way too, so I appreciate his message today. Read it, feel encouraged!

He doesn’t tell us anything we don’t know. The reason the message was motivating to me was because I am on a similar path of getting rid of “friction” in my life, so I can BETTER focus on important goals.

Friction = Fears

Get rid of fears, get rid of friction.

My Dad had no time for fears. As soon as they crop up, deal with them he would say! It’s your life, if you want to cry in a corner and feel sorry for yourself, so be it. You are a grown up, I’m not here to coddle you. You are the ONLY one to change your life!

Fears are anything that hold us back. Like Tynan says in his post, it can be as simple as buying a new set of pliers to get a job done, organizing our files, cleaning out clutter, creating a spread sheet, hanging those curtains, negotiating a new phone plan, etc. Make a list of ALL the things you have been avoiding, and tackle each one head on!

Let’s have a goal… by Monday ALL frictions are removed!

Like this guy on his motorcycle taking that tight corner, we are going to tackle our fears “head on!”

We’ve GOT THIS!  We are “In the RACE to WIN it.” We are going for the GOLD, not Silver or Bronze — GOLD, we are Olympians!

Post your goal below… THINK of December 31… and THEN own it!

Let’s see who gets to the FINISH line first!