A Blogger’s Diary 4/11/21: On Writing, Reflecting, Collaboration, and Purpose

This past week, I’ve been reflecting upon purpose, which I’ll write more about in a moment, and planning in the unknown, which will be the topic of a post, well, I’m not sure when, yet will get to it eventually.

Before we get to my reflection on purpose, let’s take a look at a couple writing reflections.

Writing and Reflecting

Mind

The poem Mind was, as you may have already surmised, a reflection on my meditation practice. A large part of my life today. It is a beautiful experience, to sit and watch as the mind does it’s thing, and to become detached from it’s activity. It is also a wonder to sit and watch as your mind, over time, begins to slow and become more quiet. Magical.

The Mind poem was also my first foray into the Hexastich poetry style. I learned about this poem style, like many others, from a lovely blogger friend of mine. I’ve written another poem in this style already, and will have more to share in the coming weeks and months.

Gift

The poem Gift was a reflection of the many things I’ve learned in the past 4 years, as I’ve learned to go within from my life coach and teacher. It’s been difficult and one of the most wonderful experiences of my life.

And, like I write often, this nexus of the difficult and wonderful, a paradox (and not), is where the jewels of life live. When we slow down, go within, really get to know ourselves, we get back so much more. Beautiful.

Collaboration

As you may know, yesterday I posted The Dance Dances A Life of Its Own, which was a collaboration with Amber of DiosRaw. As a relatively new blogger, I’ve only done one other collaboration, which was the post, Vulnerability: A Paradox, with Maja of Lampelina.

Amber and I created the poem this past week, with the former, sending emails back and forth throughout the creative process. Was superb. A wonderful experience.

With the latter, I submitted a request to do a guest post on Lampelina, and Maja reached out to me to do so. Was also a great experience.

A lot of fun all-around.

There is another collaboration, of a different kind, coming soon, with another inspiring blogger. I’ll have more on that in the future.

I love the concept of, and practice of, collaboration. You learn so much more when you work with other people. It is by far one of my favorite things to do in this life, collaborate with inspirational people. I’ve been very lucky to have had these opportunities and many others in various areas of my life; and, I look forward to future ones.

Purpose

While I’ve written on purpose before, it is a concept and practice that I reflect upon, well, not quite often, yet it does come up now and then. This week, purpose has come up in regard to planning inside of the unknown.

There was a time in my life where I continually questioned my purpose. Was in fact, confounded by the idea of purpose. Maybe even a little afraid of the concept.

However, today, I accept my truth in regard to purpose. That, in fact, each moment we are alive, we can find our purpose in, well, exactly what it is that we are doing. Right now, typing this end of the week diary entry. In the next moment? Don’t know, it doesn’t exist yet.

What I am pointing to, is that purpose lives inside of us. Purpose is a concept that we attach meaning to, just like every other concept. If you believe that purpose needs to look and feel a certain way, and you don’t see or feel what you are looking for, well, then you’ll have a hard time finding your purpose.

However, if you believe that purpose lives within, and lives in each moment every day, doing exactly as you are already doing, well, there’s nothing to find. Your purpose is readily apparent in each moment everyday.

We can all develop an awareness of purpose that is different from the current one we hold. It just takes practice. Practice letting go of the concept of purpose as we understand it today, and learning a new way to think about and feel purpose.

Remember, purpose is first and foremost a concept. It is not a living breathing thing. We breathe life into the concept of purpose, as we do all concepts, when we give life to it by attaching meaning, which we create, to the concept.

And, just as we breathe life into the concept of purpose as we do today, we can learn a new way to breathe a different life into a new concept of purpose.

It is up to you, me, and everyone else; and, well, that’s quite empowering.

Alright, that’s all for this week.

Have a blessed week, my friends.

#poetry, #blog, #blogger, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #collaboration, #collaborativewriting, #creatingpurpose, #diary, #poem, #poems, #purpose, #reflection

A Blogger’s Diary 4/4/21: On Writing, Reflecting, Travel, and Connection

This past week, I’ve been reflecting upon connection. How we are all connected to each other, yes, and to everything else we see. All of it. Quite beautiful. 

Before I write more about connection, let’s take a look at a couple reflections from this past week, and a few ideas I have for next week. Sound good? Okay, here we go.

Writing

This past week, I’ve continued to write quite a bit of poetry. It just happens like that sometimes; and, of late, there’s been much more poetry within me. Fun.

Tanka #9

The Tanka #9 poem, occurred to me one day after meditation. Well, in fact, the concepts found in the poem occur to me all the time these days. That is, existence, and the connection we all have to each other and all that surrounds us. 

We have the idea that we are separate, due to socialization and the creation of the ego-self. The separateness we feel, however, is illusory. Not real. Reality lives behind and beyond the concepts we hold of ourselves and all that we see. Beautiful.

Heed

The poem Heed, is a reflection, in part, on my sensitivity; which I’ve written about before, in the post, The Paradox and Gift of Being A Highly Sensitive Person: Clear and Strong, Not Hurt and Damaged.

I didn’t understand my own sensitivity for most of my life. In fact, my sensitivity was something I ran from in many ways. When you are a highly sensitive person and unaware, the world feels more frightening and incomprehensible. The paradox?

When you are a highly sensitive person and aware, the world feels more, well, like you, beautiful, strong, and very comprehensible. Being a highly sensitive person is a true gift.

Travel

Well, in my diary entry last week, I wrote about being on the waitlist for the vaccine; and, I now have an appointment next Friday, which means I will be fully vaccinated by early May.

Now, as many of you know, my whole family lives in Los Angeles, California, where I lived the majority of my life; and, I have a niece graduating from high school this year. The question? Yep, you guessed it; do I travel? Not sure? Me either.

Instead of thinking about the choice, I looked at flights, and found that the quarantine policy for traveling into LA County is still in place, which means that when you are traveling into the County from out of state you must quarantine for 10 days. 

I could not find a single resource on the flight booking site, nor on the CDC website about traveling once fully vaccinated. So? I called the LA County Public Health Department. The person that answered the phone was super nice, and, to my question, replied, that’s a good question. They didn’t know the answer either. 

The LA County employee that helped me is going to do some research and call me back. Thus, my choice on traveling to LA remains, for now, on hold.

Connection

This past week, we had our remote Spring Instructor Forum. These forum’s are a chance for our Community Education Instructors to get to see each other, and to interact with us. In the Community Education program we have over 200 instructors, and they live all over the area, so this is one way we stay connected.

As I prepared my small talk with the Instructors, I pondered this past year, the current year, and the upcoming year. And? What occurred to me was that, yes, so much has changed this past year, and more changes will come.

Yet, one thing that will not change is the connection we have with each other, which is why I am calling next fiscal year (2021/22), The Year of Continued Connection.

There will always be change, and, in many ways, change is wonderful. Terribly hard at times, yes, and also beautiful. 


Though we have no idea what the rest of this year will bring, we know that our relationships are strong, and that they will endure through whatever change comes our way. We have proven this this past year.

I’ve written many posts about relationships and connection. I always say, there’s nothing more important than the relationship we have with ourselves, and with those people we surround ourselves with. 

Everything starts with us. And, when you have a quality connection with yourself, you will have quality connections with others. 

I’ll leave you this week, with two quotes I shared with the Community Education Instructors this past week, as I think they speak very well to the value of connection.

“I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be… This is the interrelated structure of reality.” Martin Luther King Jr

“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.” Brené Brown

habits for well being

Alright, that’s all for now.

Have a beautiful coming week.

#poetry, #blogger, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #brene-brown, #connection, #covid-19, #diary, #life, #martin-luther-king-jr, #pandemic, #poem, #poems, #reality, #reflecting, #relationships, #self-awareness, #travel, #vaccination, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 3/28/21: On Writing, Reflecting, Vaccinations, and Emotions

This past week, I’ve been reflecting upon my emotions, as you might have noticed and/or read about in some of my poems. As we continue to move forward with vaccinations, it occurs to me that there will be emotions about the pandemic that will arise for all of us. Some we will see coming, some we will not.

Before we discuss this topic more, let’s take a look at the writing that occured this week, and the writing slated for next week.

Writing

This past week, I found myself drawn more to poetry. In fact, in the past two weeks, I’ve written about 10 new poems. All of which, I will share in the coming weeks. I’ve been feeling moved this week by several concepts, which did make their way into the following pieces.

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Image credit; Eric Muhr @ Unsplash

Keeps

The poem Keeps was initially inspired by the WDYS #74 prompt from Keep it Alive, by Sadje. The prompt this week reminded me of my hikes in the local area in which I live. Hikes where I am present to only my footing, the scenery, such as the earth, the foliage, the beautiful sky, and any wildlife that comes by. Beautiful.

As thoughts enter my mind, I let them pass through, and remain in that moment, just walking along the trail being one with the Nature that surrounds me.

It is quite meditative to walk, practice your breathing, and just listen and watch. There is healing in each foot step, each breath, and in each moment. If you’ve not tried meditative walking/hiking, I suggest giving it a try.

Elixir

The poem Elixir was an acknowledgement to the present moment and the illusion of time. I’ve written several times about the social construction of time, and when you really understand that time, in fact, is illusory, you are freed from self-imposed limits bound in time.

We all live outside of time, yet also live in it, as we choose. A paradox, and not.

Next Week

As I mentioned previously, I’ve created a bunch of new poems, and am excited to get them scheduled. I feel more poetry coming, so will continue to write and reflect on new concepts and insights as they come.

I am also continuing to work on a post on silence. I had an insight this week about a post on communication, and will probably start that sometime in the next week or two.

Alas, I’ve not made much progress on the Leadership from Within series. Though I’ve not made much progress yet, I will continue to endeavor to write this series. I see it as a possible book in the future, and have a lot of thinking and feeling about the topic to share.

Photo by Mat Napo on Unsplash

Vaccinations

Vaccinations are opening up more here locally. In fact, I am pleased to report that I am on an official waitlist for my first dose. I was told I should get a call in the next week or two.

Though I am pleased about this progress, both as a State and a Country, I realize that there is much work to do across this country and the world to ensure that everyone that wants a vaccination has access.

I will not pretend to know the answers to this issue. I will say, however, that I look forward to a day when those in legislative positions and positions of power in this country and around the globe think more collectively and collaboratively about serving the common good, which includes all of humanity. Everyone, everywhere.

Photo by Diana H on Unsplash

Emotions

With anticipation and excitement also comes apprehension, fear, and indifference. It’s just how it works. Which means that whereas some people will feel the former, some will feel the latter, and many of us will feel both.

When I was told that I would be put on a waiting list for my first dose of the vaccine, I was excited and anxious. Excited about the movement, and anxious about the unknown.

It is important for me to stay grounded in the current reality, which, yes, includes the vaccination being distributed to more and more people across the State. The current reality also includes, however, the fact that some people will not want to get the vaccine and some will not have access to the vaccine due to systematic inequalities in this country and around the world.

The latter of which fills me with sadness.

It also occurs to me that the landscape of how the pandemic, and respective responses to it from a systems and organizational perspective, are still completely unknown. Which simply means taking things as they come, developing plans and iterating those plans as needed, to ensure we continue to serve as many people as possible with educational options that fit their needs. Important.

The invitation I will send out to the team this week will be to recognize the emotions as they come for what they are. Responses to stimuli in your environment, and in your mind. Meaning, emotions are something we get and feel, they are not who we are.

Emotions, like our thoughts, do not define us. We choose.

Alright, that’s all for this week.

Have a wonderful week and please stay healthy and well.

#poetry, #blogger, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #communication, #contemplation, #covid-19-vaccination, #diary, #emotionalintelligence, #emotions, #leadership, #meditation, #pandemic, #poem, #poems, #reflections, #silence, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 3/21/21: On Writing, Reflecting, Next Week, and Silence

This past week, I’ve been reflecting upon, well, the last year. Phew. As businesses begin to open up more here across the country, and the vaccine becomes more and more available, it is interesting to ponder where we’ve come from, where we are, and where we are going.

It’s also interesting to ponder and be present to the need to create time for ourselves away from the chaos, so we can just be; and, be in silence.

Before I get to my reflection on silence, however, let’s have a couple reflections on this past week’s posts, and a look at what next week holds.

Writing

I spent some more time completing the Leadership Series this week, with the final entry on building high-performance teams, which will publish next Saturday. Now that that series is complete, I will turn some of my attention to a new leadership series, Leading from Within.

I also spent some time this week, writing poetry for future posts. It’s fascinating to me to watch people develop, myself, of course, included. When I look at the first poem I wrote several months ago, to the most recent one, there are similarities, yet they are quite different. Iterative development. Fun.

Alright, here are two reflections from this week’s posts.

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Image credit; Sonny Mauricio

Dream

The poem Dream was inspired by the WDYS prompt from Keep it Alive, by Sadje.

As I pondered the scenic picture, I reflected upon how we gaze upon nature, and how nature gazes back. It’s all quite lovely. I began with that thought in mind, and then just let the words come. Well, better language would be that the words just came. I don’t have anything to do with the “letting” in this process.

I also reflected upon and played with the concepts of perception, diversity, and the vast ocean of both we have in this lovely world. It is so beautiful to contemplate all that we see within and without, isn’t it? Lovely.

I obviously also played with the concepts of dreaming and reality. For now, I will only say that that is up to the individual. Each of us. What’s a dream to you, and what’s real is for you alone; and, I think it is quite lovely that way.

Streams

Ah, the poem Streams was inspired by my childhood in Los Angeles; and, yes, there really was a “river bed” out back. It was the only real river I saw on a regular basis. Know though, that, as kids, we did get to see real streams, yet they were few and far between in the big city in which we lived.

Funnily enough, you don’t actually have to travel far in LA to get to a stream, yet most of the time I spent in water was, as many of you know, at the beach. Love the ocean, always have, always will.

I also played with the concept of existence in this poem. Pointing to a reality only found within. And, lastly I reflected upon dreams and how important it is to have them, tend them well, and to, yes, water them with love and affection. Nurture them, I say, and they will surely manifest for you one day.

Next Week

As was aforementioned, this week, I finished the Leadership Series with a final installment on building high-performance teams. I am amazed, and then not, at how long this series took to complete. Factually, I wanted to write an installment on organizations, yet am going to wait to complete that installment in the Leading from Within series, which I’ve started.

I am also working on new posts on silence, strategic thinking, sleep, and, yep, another post on gardening. Fun.

I’ve also written several more poems this past week, they just came, and am looking forward to sharing those with you in the coming weeks.

I have a lot more ideas, and will let those percolate for a while.

Silence

I wrote a poem once on Silence. Actually it was one of the first poems I wrote when first swept away, quite literally, with ideas, images, and language for the poems that have come since that time.

I had a couple of challenging days this past week, and I’ve never in my life been more grateful for the silence that I get to take part in today. Sitting in silence is such a wonder. It is all at once, empty and full of healing beyond a description that any language can conjure.

Suffice to say, or write, rather, as I have before, that if you find yourself overwhelmed with life, emotions, people, places, or events, try to create some silent time for yourself. Away from everything. For it is in the spaces that we create to be silent where the mysteries of this universe become more clear; and, when there is more clarity, there is more space for you to live and to love.

A wonder.

Have a fantastic week.

#poetry, #abloggersdiary, #blog, #blogger, #blogging, #contemplation, #diary, #dream, #existence, #humandevelopment, #introspection, #leadershipseries, #leadingfromwithin, #losangeles, #mindfulness, #poem, #reality, #silence, #streams, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 3/7/21: Two Writing Reflections, Change, and Coaching

Photo by Neel on Unsplash

Well, last week was the first week of registration, and thus far we are busier than last term, which is grand. It will be interesting to see how registration goes the next couple of weeks.

The Saturday paper today read that the Governor of Oregon was intent that all Oregonians receive vaccinations by the end of June. And, in that same press release, the Governor also stated that people working in higher education will be vaccinated by April 1.

I am cautiously optimistic. Meaning, that the plan is a good one, and I appreciate the Governor for creating a strong vision, yet with all of the challenges and changes this past year, I think, staying in our current reality, for now, is best. And, our current reality?

Well, Benton County, where I live is still categorized as extreme risk, whereas Linn County, where I work is categorized as moderate risk. Yes, precarious.

The team and I are planning to be remote the rest of this fiscal year, and if that changes, we will face those changes at that time.

Alright, let’s discuss writing. Here are two reflections from this week.

Writing

Found

As I was thinking about writing the poem Found, I was reflecting upon living in Flagstaff, AZ, which is 7000 feet in elevation and gets about 90 inches of snow in the winter. It is an amazing little town, and is beautiful throughout the entire year. Growing up in Los Angeles, the only time I experienced snow was when we traveled to Big Bear, which we did maybe once every other year.

Living in Flagstaff for 4 years was, well, very different, in that we had to learn how to live in the snow. As I reflected upon our time there, I was thinking about hiking in the snow, which is a lovely experience. You can come upon whole meadows, which are completely covered in snow, as far as you can see.

The reflection also reminded me of being disconnected from my inner-self for a long time, and how that’s not the case anymore, and it feels, well, beautiful.

Brilliance

The reflection for this poem was inspired by the WDYS prompt from Keep it Alive, by Sadje. A beautiful picture of the Taj Mahal, with the sun rising directly behind it, reminded me of majesty and brilliance.

I only partake in a couple of prompts today, and appreciate the inspiration these wonderful bloggers create. It is super fun each week to wait and wonder about the prompt, and then to get the reveal. Wonderful.

The picture of the Taj Mahal also reminded me of humanities resilience, and the beauty in standing for each other.

Change

I’ve been thinking more about change this past week, as some states across the country begin to relax pandemic restrictions.

It reminds me that we will all have a lot of change coming in the next year, and, well, actually the next couple of years as we all learn to live in our new realities, whatever they end up being.

It also reminds me of the necessity and need of being gentle and patient with ourselves and each other. There is a lot that can be gained when we are gentle and exercise our patience. We get more for ourselves, and we give more back out to those we love and care about.

As we continue to face new changes this coming year, remember to be gentle and patient with yourself.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Coaching

I am excited to report that I have two new clients. They’ve both come through work, and I am really enjoying working with both of them.

One is a small business owner, and the other is a local professional. I’ve been coaching people for many years, and it is one of the things I enjoy most about my work. I love to work with people on their personal and professional development, just as much as I do on my own development.

It is in conversations and relationships with other people where innovation, creativity, and developmental growth can occur. And, you know, every time I have a new client, I always learn something more about myself. Every time. Reciprocity is beautiful that way.

Alright, that’s all for this week.

Be well, love well, live well, and have a wonderful week.

#blogger, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #change, #coaching, #covid-19, #diary, #poems, #relfection, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 2/21/21: On Writing and Reflecting, Spring Term, and Asking for Help

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Do you ever feel like you have so much to say, and there’s just not quite enough time to say it all? Well, I’ve felt like that some this week, so have some new posts coming in the next few weeks, which I’m pretty excited about. Before we get to that, let’s take a look at 2 reflections from writing that occured this week. Alright, here we go.

On Writing and Reflecting

Forgiven

I had a great time reflecting upon and writing the poem forgiven. It was prompted by the Saturday RagTag Daily prompt, by Punam. The prompt was hugs.

As I reflected upon the concept and actual practice of hugging someone, it occured to me to write about a warm embrace in two ways, which are paradoxically, and not, one way. There is something very special about the contact between two people that occurs in a hug. Magical in fact.

The concept of falling into someone’s arms is about sharing something so special with someone else that in a way in that moment the two become one, and all of life’s complexities, challenges, and even disappointments disappear and are forgiven. Lovely.

I miss hugging people. I look forward to a day when hugging people is something we all do again as a normal everyday practice.

Imagine

I had an equally fun time reflecting upon and writing the poem Imagine, which was a WDYS prompt from Keep it Alive, by Sadje. As I considered that beautiful tower, I wondered what the tower would think about the state of the world today. I imagined, pun intended, that the tower would long for a day when people would be bustling up and down it’s steel reinforcements, and walking, laughing, and playing at its base.

Of course, as with all things we write about, imagine is also a poem about my reflections about the state of the world. The hope and knowing I hold deep inside that in due time, we will all be in-person together again, walking hand-in-hand, and laughing and playing again like we did not so long ago.

I look forward to that time.

New Writing

I have several new posts I’ve been working on. Here is a preview.

  • My One Thing This Week: Creating a Vision Traction Organizer
  • The Reflection Series #8: Causal Loop 101
  • A Developmental Moment #5: Patience as a Concept and Practice
  • A Developmental Moment #6: Why Learning to Ask for Help is Necessary and Needed

Of course, I have some new poetry, which I am also excited about. More to come!

Photo by Mink Mingle on Unsplash

Spring Term

Well, last year at this time, we were just about to embark on pivoting 5 educational programs to fully remote. Something we’d never done before, pandemic or not.

And, as we prepare for this Spring Term classes, registration for which begins on Monday, I am filled with such gratitude and appreciation for each person I work with. Their persistence in the face of adversity, determination to never give up, and to always acknowledge our current reality, while creating new ways forward within that reality, is such a treat and joy.

The department has over 120 remote classes, workshops, and training on offer for Spring term, and each term, as I’ve written before, we reach more and more people with opportunities for them to be with other people. This last term, we had students from Europe and all across the US. Super fun.

Asking For Help

For a very long time, I did not like asking for help. In fact, I would say that I avoided it at all costs. It was a part of how I was raised. Part of that individualistic mentality that is so pervasive in the US.

However, it is mere confusion at best. Why? Because, as I’ve written about before, the idea that we are independent of other people is an illusion. Simple. We are interdependent, nay, really One.

Therefore, living in an illusion that you are an individual separate from the rest of humanity and the world is a space full of pain and suffering. Seriously, I know. I lived that way for a long time.

When we are aware and realize that we are all interconnected, and that, in fact, all things on this planet are interconnected, the idea of asking for help is much more palatable. In fact, when you take that idea further, and realize that you ask for help everyday without saying the words, the concept of asking for help sort of becomes a part of who you are.

That does not mean, however, that it is easy for everyone. And, in fact, when I am super busy at work, my old pattern will reappear at times, and I have to always keep asking for help present for me. Important.

When we need help, we need to ask for it. Simple. You are not deficient or in any way less efficient or effective when you ask for help. In fact, the paradox is that you are way more effective and efficient when you ask for help. Yep. True.

I have an upcoming article on asking for help, which will come out in a few weeks.

Alright, that’s all for this week.

Stay healthy and well, and have a tremendous week.

#poetry, #askingforhelp, #blog, #blogger, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #diary, #education, #personaldevelopment, #personalenrichment, #poems, #professionaldevelopment, #remoteclasses, #spring, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 1/31/21: On My 2 Favorite Posts This Week and Music

Photo by Calista Tee on Unsplash

The end of January. Wow. It’s been almost a year since the pandemic broke out here locally. What a year. And, within 2.5 months of starting to work at home, my first blog post was published. Since then, I’ve created 295 posts, began following so many amazing blogs and inspiring people, and have now over 450 followers. Awesome, and so much fun.

Alright, let’s get to the writing part.

My 2 Favorite Posts This Week

I want to do something different this week, and for a few weeks. Instead of simply recapping all that I wrote, I’m going to choose my favorite 2 or 3 posts each week and provide some of the inspiration, thinking, and reflecting that went into the post. Ready? Good. Here we go.

Here are the two I’m choosing this week.

  1. Reminiscence
  2. Tanka #2

Reminiscence

The reminiscence poem was created as a multi-reflection on my marriage, my childhood, and having two beautiful boys. All three reflections combined in unique ways to create a poem about pain and joy, and recollections about simpler times.

One of the things I love the most about writing poetry, outside of the sheer exuberance I get when an idea flows through me, is looking back, reflecting, and putting on paper some joyous, and yes, sometimes painful life events.

Tanka #2

Tanka #2 was created as a reflection on my meditation practice, and the chasing we sometimes do as humans, trying to get to the next thing, and then the next. Reflecting on meditation and then the concept of chasing after things is a paradox, just like all of life.

The last two lines are a reflection upon creating the future from the present moment, with the knowing that already living inside of me, all of us, are the past, present, and future. As, they are one.

Alright, that’s my reflection on the reflections that inspired the two poems above. That was fun. Let’s now turn to one of my other favorite topics, music.

Photo by John Matychuk on Unsplash

Music

I’ve posted about my love for music before, though it’s been a while. I grew up in a household where music was always present. Whether that was through the TV and MTV, my dad playing his guitar, or sisters, mom, or myself playing the radio, cassettes, or an 8-track.

Yes, I did just reference the radio, cassette tapes, and 8-tracks in the same sentence. I did grow up in the late 70’s and 80’s though.

In this entry on music, I want to do two things. Show you the guitar I bought today, and embed a youtube of one of my favorite songs.

Alright, first, here is a pic of the guitar I bought today. As I mentioned, my dad played the guitar. Though I tinkered with the guitar as a child, youth, and young adult, it’s been years, and I am excited to take some lessons and begin to play.

Corvallis, Oregon 2021

Pretty, yes? Yes, I think so too.

Alright, now here is one of my favorite songs. I am present to it, because my oldest son played it on the guitars we looked at on Saturday. Was so beautiful.

Here you go.

YouTube

I just adore this song. Always have, and always will.

Alright, friends, that’s all for this week.

Remember, to keep breathing and take time for yourself. It’s important.

Have a great week.

#poetry, #beatles, #blackbird, #blog, #bloggersdiary, #blogging, #diary, #introspection, #intuition, #music, #poem, #reflection, #tanka, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 1/10/21: On Writing, Work, The Remote Book Club, and Difficulty

Photo by Chris Chow on Unsplash

Well, we’ve now just about completed our first full week of the new year, which means, well, many different things for people. For me? It means that I’m back at the College, and we are continuing to move our work forward. I’ll talk more about that in a minute. For now?

Let’s take a look at this week’s posts.

Phew, that’s fun. Now, how about next week?

Well, I’m happy to report that I’ve been scheduling posts in advance, so I already know some of next week’s posts, which include a few poems, haiku#2, and two more articles on development. One of the articles is on having difficult conversations, and one is the last entry in part 2 the Leadership Series.

I am also working on two new articles, which will not be posted for a couple weeks. One is on creating intention, and the second is on the law of attraction. They should be super fun.

Alright, as it was my first week back to work in a week-and-a-half, let’s take a look at how that went.

Photo by airfocus on Unsplash

Work

I’ve been in this current position for almost 4 years now, so the break was, well, awesome, and different. Different in that, there was more time. I didn’t work as much, so had more time for writing and other endeavors. Was nice.

However, by the last weekend of the break, I was ready to see the team. We had a great first week back, registrations are stronger than they’ve been since the beginning of the pandemic, which means we are serving more and more people each term. Amazing.

The team is well. They are continuing to use both their heads and their hearts to move our work forward, which is, well, essential.

I’ve written before about making sure we use both our heads and our hearts in our lives, well, actually recently, so will simply state here, that it is super fun to see the team’s growth, our collective growth, and the growth of each individual. Super fun.

Photo by airfocus on Unsplash

Remote Book Club

I am happy to write that the remote book club is alive and well. As you may recall, we are reading, Killing Commendatore, by Haruki Murakami.

Now, I’ll admit my bias, as I have before, I am a huge Murakami fan, so I love this book. Thus far, the book is about journeying. Journey’s that occur inside ourselves and outside ourselves. It is quite fascinating.

We are only about half way through the 700+ page book, which means we will not finish it until sometime in February.

I look forward to the discussion we will have in about three weeks from now, should be pretty amazing.

Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

Difficulty

This past week I was more present to the word, or concept of, difficulty. For many reasons, one of which is, yes, the article I wrote about difficult conversations; and, also the continued difficulties due to the pandemic.

I am leaving you this week with the Monday message I have scheduled for the team, which will go out tomorrow morning.

Here we go.

This past week, I’ve been reflecting upon the word, or concept of, difficulty. Why?

Well, the entire world has experienced many difficult things this past year. And, whereas, yes, we are beginning a new year, it is part of my everyday practice and work to recognize that more difficulties lie ahead.

However, understanding that there will be difficulty does not mean that there will only be things that are difficult.

One thing, of the many, I’ve learned this past year, is that it’s actually inside of life’s experiences, which are difficult, where we learn more about, well, everything. More about the world, the nation, the state, our local community, the college, our team, and, yes, about the human beings we are today.

I’ve also learned that no experience, or concept, such as difficulty, is free from their conceptual counterpoint. In this example, we can use the word, or concept, easily, as the counterpoint to difficulty.

When we experience something that is difficult, we know it’s difficult because we’ve also experienced things in our life that are easier. They go together. Always have, and always will. It’s how life works.

My invitation to you?

To remember, when life is giving you things that are difficult, that they will pass, and that, in some ways, when we get life experiences that are difficult, they make us appreciate the easy stuff that much more.

Corvallis, Oregon, January 2021

Wow, I’ve never used the “pull quote” function in WordPress before. That’s fun. Alright, back on track.

We will always get things in life that are difficult. It is inevitable. However, we will also get things in life that are easy, also part of life. They are, in fact, one. Inseparable. Meaning?

Enjoy them all, as you are able, my friends, and live your life to the fullest extent possible.

Have a lovely week.

#bloggers-diary, #blogging, #business, #diary, #difficult, #easy, #education, #harukimurakami, #leadership, #pandemic, #remotebookclub, #work, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 12/27/20: On Writing, Goal-Setting, Systems, and the Holidays

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Well, this past week, I had an insight about writing. An insight that was derived from some of the blogs I follow. Yes, some of you, so thank you. The insight? Sure.

Namely, to write and schedule posts in advance. I’ve not done something like this on a regular basis, yet I can definitely see the utility, especially when during normal work times, of which this particular time period is not. So?

Well, I’ll get to that in a moment. First, let’s take a look at this week’s writing. Here we go.

Writing

  1. The Framed Window
  2. Focus
  3. Joy
  4. The Sunshine Blogger Award
  5. Swing
  6. Christmas Day
  7. Friends
  8. Flow

Yep, lots of poetry. Fun. And, this week? Sure.

As I was writing about above, I already have two posts scheduled for next weekend. An article on leadership, and one on vulnerability. It’s nice to have those written and scheduled, which will allow me to get back to work on the leadership series, the reflection series, and the social construction series next week. Excited.

Photo by Isaac Smith on Unsplash

Goal-Setting

I’m present to goal-setting today, as I’ve created a new vision for some of my upcoming engagement on LinkedIn, and have set new goals within that vision. Of course, I’ve also created priorities that are connected to both the long-term, and short-term goals.

If goal-setting is something you’d like to learn more about, you can learn more about how I think about goal-setting in this article, Create A Vision For Your Future Self in 5 Minutes.

Photo by ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash

Systems

And, when you have goals that live within your vision, whether that is personal or professional, you need a system to put it into. I’ve written a couple articles about creating systems, and will share my LinkedIn system with you here.

Venngage

There we go. That was fun. I do love venngage. Anyway, here we can see the department priorities, and then one way that I will take action next quarter to create more engagement through LinkedIn (LI). You will see there are some blog series listed, which are not actually a reality yet, however, that’s how goal-setting works.

First you create the vision, then the objectives, then the priorities, and then? Well, you get to work. I am excited about the opportunity to discuss the new series with you in the future.

Okay, let’s turn to holidays, shall we? Good. Here we go.

Photo by Andreas Dress on Unsplash

The Holidays

Wow, what a lovely time of year. I do love the holiday, as I’ve written about before. It’s more the time of year, when we are heading into deeper winter, and I can start to see the spring not far off.

Well, it’s still a ways off at this point, however, in the Pac Northwest, the days start to get noticeably longer in January. And, I do love longer days, and the possibility of more sun as we head towards March.

Though, we had a gorgeously sunny day today. Beautiful.

Though I didn’t travel this holiday, we did Zoom calls, like lots of people, and that was nice. I also spent time with my oldest son, playing frisbee golf in the rain and cold, yet it was so nice to spend time with him. We made a sweet potato and butternut squash chili, and had dark chocolate cranberry bread for dessert.

Yes, of course I made the bread from scratch! I love to cook and bake, which I don’t know that I’ve written about before. Anyway, the bread was delicious.

Alright, that’s all for this entry.

As we approach the New Year, I want to wish you all the best in the coming week, and in the coming year. I am so excited about this next year. Seriously. I am excited to continue to create and write, and continue to engage with your beautiful creations.

Stay healthy and well, and enjoy your week.

#poetry, #bloggers-diary, #blogging, #business, #diary, #goal-setting, #holidays, #leadership, #linkedin, #newyear, #objectives, #poem, #priorities, #systems, #videos, #vision, #writing

A Blogger’s Diary 12/20/20: On Writing, Reading, Listening, and Stimulation

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Photo by John-Mark Smith on Unsplash

Alright, another week closer to this year’s end, and entering deeper into winter, which, for where I currently live, means more, well, a ton more rain to be accurate. Whereas, I didn’t grow up in a very rainy area, Los Angeles is, of course, known for sun most of the time, I am more comfortable with the rainy weather these days.

And, yes, writing did occur this week, and here is what that looked like.

Writing

  1. Simpler
  2. Leaving
  3. Sitting
  4. A 3-minute Reflection on 3 Ways to Display and Visualize Linear Data
  5. Walking
  6. Shadows
  7. The Social Construction Series Part 9: The Social Construction of Power
  8. Grace

One of my goals this week was to get, The Leadership Series Part 2.5: Why Developing the Self is Always the First Step in Leadership completed, and that did not happen. Next week. Yes, so what about next week? Let’s take a look.

In the poetry realm, I have a few ideas. I am thinking about two poems right now, one on flow, and one on force, which will be fun. And, then the aforementioned leadership article will be a focus next week, as will another entry in the social construction series. I’m not sure about the latter just yet. Meaning, the topic. Not sure.

I’ve also got a couple of ideas about creating vision, and managing the gap between your current reality and your future projected reality, or the real and ideal in leadership terms. Alright, how about reading. Sure, let’s go.

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Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

Reading

Well, I am still working on, or, rather, finishing, the book about and by Sri Ramana Maharshi, and I am now reading Killing Commendatore, which I started last week. And?

It is a very Haruki Murakami type book, which means? That, so far, it is awesome. Of course, it starts with a prologue, and the main character is painting a portrait of a client that has no face, or rather has a face of mist. And then?

Then Murakami begins to create the world you’ll be entering into, all of the typical trials and tribulations and the emotional breakdowns and breakthroughs that follow for the main character. I’ve only read about 60 pages, and Murakami has already covered a lot of ground.

I am looking forward to discussing what I’ve read thus far with the remote book club tonight. How about listening? A new entry topic this week. Ready? Good. Here we go.

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Photo by Ilias Chebbi on Unsplash

Listening

Though podcasts have been around for well over 25 years, I didn’t start listening to podcasts until about 5 years ago. I know, I know, I am now playing catch up. Fun!

Here are a couple of podcasts, which you may not have heard of, and are very good.

  1. An Oral History of the Office
  2. Louder Than A Riot
  3. Resistance

Alright, so I have a soft spot for the television show the office. Fun. And, an Oral History of the Office does a great job recounting just how hard it was to get that show on the air in the United States. A very interesting and entertaining podcast.

Louder Than A Riot was one that I stumbled onto, as I listen to most of my music on Spotify, and I caught an ad about the new podcast. Wow. The podcast traces systematic and structural racism in this county in regard to hip-hop. A caution. The episodes are raw and explicit. The topics they cover are so important, and the two hosts, Rodney Carmichael and Sidney Madden, are stellar.

Resistance is one I just found this past week, and it traces systematic and structural racism in the United States through the lens of protesters all across the country. I’ve listened to most of the episodes already, and they are well done. Again, the host, Saidu Tejan Thomas Jr., does a fantastic job. This podcast is also raw and explicit.

Alright, that was fun. I recommend all three. How about stimulation? Yep, here we go.

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Photo by Luis Reynoso on Unsplash

Stimulation

It has occurred to me off and on over the past several weeks, and I’m sure I’ve written about it, that stimulation is something that I monitor. Important. Why?

Because when we are constantly stimulated with work, computer screens, phones, television, even conversation, we are depleting our vital energies. And? That’s oaky, we just need to be aware that replenishment is needed and necessary.

What can we do? Well, there are many things. All of which we have discussed in previous posts. My favorites? Yep, there are two that I consider paramount.

  1. Meditation
  2. Walking

So important. Both meditation and walking get me away from all stimulation, and, in a way, create a reset of sorts. Simply meaning, they restore my energy levels. Oh, and there is one more. Naps. I take several naps now each week. Super refreshing.

What we do to get our quiet and reenergizing time matters less than we get it. That I get it, and that you get it. So?

If you’re not getting enough replenishment time for yourself, make sure to create that time. It can start with simply leaving the computer station, or setting the phone down, and walking out the door for a walk. Really important.

Alright, that’s all for this week.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and a lovely remainder of 2020.

Be well.

#bloggersdiary, #diary, #harukimurakami, #listening, #louderthanariot, #onwriting, #reading, #resistance, #sriramanamaharshi, #stimulation, #theoffice, #writing