Nerdiness to a New Level – WMTW Tech Trends Report

Some things I stink at:

  • Managing money – always think I can move this here and that there… and it never works
  • Accepting compliments – Nice person: Pretty shirt – Me: ‘Eh it was only $5 and there is a rip in the side
  • Cars/Engines – too many words and parts and stuff
  • Those damn metal brain teaser things – why do people think those small torture devices are fun?!
  • Self promotion – Please don’t look at me… look at them!
  • Being on film or having my picture taken – I go from normal person to stiff, sweaty fembot with awkward facial expressions in less than a millisecond

There are obviously a few more I could add (I’m sure my husband could lend a few ideas too) but you get the point. So with this list of unskills, I may have failed to mention that I have been working with WMTW 8 (local ABC channel) on a weekly Tech Trends report with Erin Ovalle. They air at about 7:15am on Saturday mornings.

If you miss them on-air, some of them are also online for your viewing and snickering pleasure.

Here are the ones that I can currently find online:

Working with Erin has been great. I look forward to getting better at these (I hate not being good at things) and I am really excited to share with people some of the cool things local businesses are doing with technology. I am a lucky girl and like with running or overcoming obstacles, I know that trying something new and uncomfortable will only make me stronger.

If you have ideas for topics Erin and I should cover or a local business using technology in a neat way that we should feature, please let me know!

Backing Up

floppy discI hate it when something bad happens and it was 100% preventable. The other day I went to add an event to my iPhone calendar and I was surprised the whole day was clear of obligations. Then I was surprised that the whole next day was open too… so was the next and the next and the next. That was bad.

I am a very busy person, many would say too busy due to my inability to say ‘no’. I can handle being busy. I am meticulous about keeping my calendar and sticking to it. So the morning I realized the whole calendar had just erased into thin air, was a bad morning.

I read all the forums, I asked for help online, I went to the Genius Bar at the Apple Store, I tried restoring it from a previous update but it was gone.

Most people that I asked for help said the magic words ‘well didn’t you back it up?!?’. If it was backed up, I assure you I would not have been as panicked. Those words were not very helpful.

So if you are like me and too busy to back up your devices, I am telling you to back them up because the time and information lost on the other end is really not worth it. I now have an event in my calendar every month to remind me to back everything up.

How to protect your information on your iPhone

  • Sync your calendar to Outlook or your Google Calendar.
  • Store your information on iCloud.
  • My photos mean so much for me. I don’t know what I would do if I lost them. Put a copy of your photos in another location, like your computer.

If you find yourself here because you too have lost your information and did not back it up… the only solace I found was from my old friend Carrie Bradshaw.

“No one talks about backing up. You’ve never used that expression before, but apparently everybody’s secretly running home at night and backing up their work!”

Photo credit: flattop341

Search for Any Image on the Web and a Story About a Home Wrecker

Yes, I know this blog is all over the place – but that was the warning I gave you with the very first post. Some things just aren’t a good fit for other places that I write, so I am going to put them here.

How cool is this?!

Henri Matisse Purple Robe and AnemonesHave you checked out Google’s Search by Image yet? Well if not, chalk this up to something cool and I will let you figure out how you can use this.

Now you can search for information on any photo on the web or that you have on your computer. All you have to do is go to Google’s Search by Image and you can either drag and drop your image into the search bar or click on the camera icon and upload the image you want to search.

The results may be all over the place as Google learns how to ‘read’ and identify photos but they can also be pretty cool.

Need a video to how you how this works better? Watch it here

How I finally got to use it

I have known this for a few months, but I had yet to try it until this weekend. As you may know, my office recently moved into the Casco Bay Technology Hub. With the move, we got a new neighbor who has shared in my pangs of having to decorate a new office.

Our new office neighbor brought in print that she liked but she was afraid to hang it because she heard a rumor that the woman who was the focus of the painting was a ‘woman of the night‘. She didn’t want clients or art snobs to point out the painting of a prostitute she had above her conference table.

So what I did was took a picture of the print, uploaded it to Google’s Image Search and voilà! With my quick search, I found a calendar of paintings by Henri Matisse. A little more searching and I found the name of the painting – Purple Robe and Anemones. With the name of the painting, I was able to search for the model – Lydia Delectorskaya!

So was she a whore?

LydiaNo, but Henri’s wife thought she was. Lydia was a model who became Henri’s artist assistant. After years of service she started modeling for him, she even lived with the artist and his family. After awhile, Mrs. Matisse, had about enough and was convinced something was going on with Henri and Lydia so she kicked the model/assistant out.

Even after Lydia was out of the house, Henri’s wife was not convinced of his fidelity and she left him. Eventually Lydia moved back in with old Henri and was his caretaker in his final days. So she may not have been a prostitute, but she was a home wrecker.

Thanks Google Image Search!

There is no Substitute for a Friend

Someone I don’t personally know committed suicide yesterday. We had never met but I respected him. I followed his words, his tweets and heard him in interviews and speeches.

I envied him. I envied his connections, his ability to express his thoughts in words and presentations better than I ever could. I envied that he got to travel around the world talking to people about what he knew. In this crazy ‘new marketing’ world, Trey Pennington was a legend and now he is gone.

I am sad

How can I feel so sad for a man I never met? As we connect with people on Twitter or Facebook or read their blogs we start to feel like we know them. In the light of these tragic events, I realize that I did not know this man at all. This man had a whole off-line life, family and demons that few people knew about.

I am also sad because so many other people/friends/colleagues that knew Trey better than I did are sad. When anything like this happens, everyone has those thoughts that they wished they could have done something or they wish that they had known. Those are hard feelings to deal with sometimes and I am sad people I know are trying to deal with that right now.

Remember what it means to be a friend

In his book the Thank You Economy, Gary Vaynerchuk asks if online you are building contacts or connections. He is speaking specifically about social media for businesses but what about in your life? With new tools it is easier than ever to stay in touch with people we know, meet people who share our interests and maintain conversations regularly.

Are these tools giving us more opportunity to connect with people, or in fact, are they giving us less?

Are they fragmenting our relationships between what we want people to see and what we don’t?

Are they making us feel more surrounded by people but at the same time more alone?

Trey Pennington had over 100,000 Twitter followers. He suffered from depression, which is an ugly thing but it makes me wonder – of those 100,000, how many could he pick up the phone and call just to say he was having a really shitty day?

Remember what it was like when we were younger to have friends… you spent time with them, did activities with them, ate with them, shared clothes, books, stories, secrets and more. As we grow up our relationships change but hopefully you maintain that type of a relationship with a few close friends (real friends, not Facebook friends). I make an effort to get together with my close friends regularly, even when we are busy.

In those conversations with close friends you tell stories, secrets, laugh and sometimes cry. Many times the problems I showed up with have seemed to go away by the time the evening is over. In our real friendships we can take off our armor and be ourselves and we can have problems. The more you talk about them with people you trust, the more you realize you aren’t alone.

As ‘adults’, we have bigger problems so why do we internalize them more? I think now more then ever we need a support system that we can reach out to. So maybe we should all take just a few moments to think about our current relationships and what they mean to us. Which ones are important and which ones are not as important?

You may have hundreds of numbers in your phone and even more Facebook friends. You may have thousands of Twitter followers and a bushel of blog subscribers but how many people do you have that you can call and say ‘I am having a really shitty day’ because those relationships are the ones that matter most.

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due

social circle fortune cookieSo we are on month eight of this blog, but I have been around the blogging block for about four years officially and before that I wrote and published some random stuff here and there. If you are building up your online presence, starting a blog, trying to get more Twitter followers or fans of your Facebook page – I have a little advice for you: give credit where credit is due.

If someone shares something with you, gives you advice, lets you use their equipment, sponsors your event, suggests a book that changed your life etc. give them the credit for it. It doesn’t have to be grand fanfare but a link or a nod or a mention should suffice.

I had an interesting conversation this past weekend about bloggers and playing nice in the sandbox. The folks I was talking to were beyond frustrated at helping someone out only to see their advice posted on that person’s blog without even a nod in their direction. They will probably not be helping that blogger again.

Your network is sexy

Many blogs, especially business blogs, are written to teach you something and for the business to prove they are an expert in their industry. There is pride in having all of the answers and speaking in an authoritative voice. Being smart is awesome and it does close the deal but you know what is even more sexy? Having a huge network of people that you can collaborate with and call on for help in an instant.

In the blogs I write for and in my work, I will always tell you that if I don’t have the answer… I bet I can find the person that does and I can usually get it very quickly. Does that make me not as smart? I don’t think so. I think people, friends and customers value that honesty.

We are in a new world where barely anyone is solely responsible for their work and knowledge. We work in teams. We Google things we don’t remember. We carry our networks in our pockets (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Email). An answer is within reach, at all times.

Adam is in week three of medical school and he was telling me even how surprised he was at how collaborative the learning process is. We heard horror stories of students stealing books from each other or sabotaging study guides so other students would suffer. Adam is learning that with online tools students share notes, resources they find online, practice tests and more (all legal and all on school resources). My first impression is yes, they need to learn all of this stuff but even how we practice medicine is different – their are new tools and resources online for doctors to use and collaborate.

So if someone does you a solid, or sparks an idea – give them the credit they deserve. I don’t care if they have 45,000 Twitter followers or 45, give them the nod they deserve and show your network how connected you are. If not, your network will eventually catch on slight after slight and you may find your network of good people shrinking, not growing. Oh and there is always karma.

Photo credit: Jeff Hester

Picking Your Head Up

My head downPretty crazy week over here in my world. Our life just carried into the next chapter – Adam started Med School this week at UNE. We have quite a journey ahead of us. I am now the bread winner for the family and Adam is going to pour himself into school for the next 8 years or so.

I am so excited to move forward, especially after a year or two of a semi-holding pattern. But, being the control freak I am – all this change has me in a tizzy.

Adam is at school about 45-50 hours a week and has lots of studying to do when he is not. We traded cars, I handed over the keys to my Jetta that has done me good for the past 7 years and he handed over the reigns to his Jeep Wrangler (see you later good hair days). We are going to have to get used to a smaller income and the dogs are going to have to get used to not having someone home with them all day. Big week… big week.

So I have had an exhausting week between trying to run the dogs each morning, keeping up with housey stuff, a busy week at work and gearing up for the Beach to Beacon (10k that was yesterday). The most exhausting part though has been the roller coaster inside my head. I am a worrier, a planner and I can deal with ANY situation as long as I know what I have to deal with and right now… I am not in control of any of those things.

Picking my head up

By now you know I run but you may or may not know I joined a running group last winter. I can run a 12 minute mile for ever. I have done 3 half marathons and plenty of other long runs. 12 minute miles and I can just do it. What I can’t do is run faster. I get nervous and panicky when I run faster and I am terrified that if I run faster, I will burn out and not be able to complete my distance I am supposed to run.

With this running group, I have a coach. Our group’s running coach, Ziggy, is a true legend to Maine running and probably the sport itself. Going into this I thought he would tell me I held my arms wrong, my stride was too short, that I leaned forward too much – nope. The biggest advice Ziggy gives me at races, timed mile trials or 880 repeats is “Pick your head up Amanda!” I run with my head down.

I heard the advice and I tried a few times but changing your ways is difficult so I think I accidentally gave up.

Smoke from White Birch FarmI recently started taking horse back riding lessons again. Every other week I head up to White Birch Farm and have a lesson. It has been great and I have forgotten so much since last time I rode. There are hundreds of little things that I need to relearn and I need to get to know these horses, my instructor and the ways of this farm.

A few months in though and I already have had my biggest weakness pointed out (repeatedly), I need to pick my head up! I ride with my head down, pretty much looking at the horses head. If we pick up the pace and are trotting or hopping a fence, I will never make it – we will be running into the fence before I even look at it.

So I need to pick my head up

I have started picking my head up when I run and I have noticed a few things:

  • It is an empowering feeling to see what is ahead of you. It makes you immediately feel stronger.
  • You are taking on the road versus the road coming AT you. With your head up you are like ‘I will run over there and then up there’ but with your head down, literally you just see asphalt coming at you. You are almost playing defense on the road coming at you versus taking charge of where you are going.
  • It makes me a little sick, almost like motion sickness. I have to assume running with your head down versus up does something to your breathing. Right now I just now it makes me a little light headed but I think that will get better.

For horseback riding, by picking my head up it makes the horse know that I am in control of our situation. I am going to have an eye out and we are headed over this way and it is going to be cool.

In this next chapter of my life – I can keep my head down and internalize, over analyze every situation and make myself crazy (like I did this week). Or I can pick my head up and look at our future. My husband is getting to study to do something he loves. He is achieving his goals. I am acheiving my goals and we are going to have better lives because of it. Just like running and riding, I need to look ahead to where we are going and not drown in the details of getting there. There will always be ‘what-ifs’ but they will always work themselves out.

“I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.”
Wayne Gretzky

Conference Necessities

The product links in this post are affiliate links. That means, in short, if you click on them and buy something, I might make a fraction of a penny. I am telling you because I am legally bound too, not to urge you to buy anything. I love and use all of these products.

Bear Conference NecessitiesI am leaving for Washington DC tomorrow for a conference for work. I kinda forgot too. I go to my fair share of conferences each year. This one snuck up on me, but that is fine. Things have been busy and my mind has been on other things.

The thing about conferences is after 10 or so, you sort of have the routine down. I have a good idea of the things I have to pack and what I need. I thought I would share some of my conference necessities, no matter the conference, these are the things that help me get through a long week or so of networking and learning.

Top 12 Conference Items

  1. Hand sanitizer (health needs) – Conferences are for meeting people, hunderds or thousands of people. After a lot of conferences, everyone is sick. New people from all over the country have all kinds of nice germs that you can’t fight off because you are out of whack, overtired and constantly exposed. A small, pen sized hand sanitizer, like Purell Spray Pen should do the trick. Just a little spray here and there can help and you don’t feel like a weirdo lugging around a jug of Purell.
  2. Airborne (health needs) – Just like above, meeting people and flying when your system is weekend is dangerous. I don’t even know if Airborne works but it makes me think it works so I take it. It also has vitamins and healthy stuff in it, so it doesn’t hurt to take it.
  3. Filtered Water Bottle (health needs) – I recently purchased a Brita Bottle with Filter and I love it! You can fill it from water from any tap and it filters in the bottle. Ice cubes also fit in there perfectly. Being a Mainer, I am spoiled with delicious water. Now I can tuck this is my bag and fill it whenever, wherever! We all know water is so good for you and for keeping you healthy. Why chance it by hoping they have water in the sessions and make sure you have a back up plan.
  4. Running shoes (health needs) – One of the reasons I picked up running is that you don’t need a lot of equipment. When you are away at a conference is a GREAT time to squeeze in a run (or a walk). Like the previous two examples, your body is run down at a conference but just getting up and about and sweating out some bad juju can really help you fight things off, feel energized and get you on track. You are also away with less of the distractions of home. I also like exploring a new city or area on a run. Obviously you need to be safe and know where you are going, but some of my favorite SXSW experiences were running around Lady Bird Lake. I got to see more of Austin than almost all of the hundreds of thousands of attendees. So bring your sneaks, lace ’em up and get out there (safely).
  5. Sheer Band-aids (health needs) – No matter how comfy you think your shoes are, there are few that can stand up to the work load you put on them at a conference. Drop a few Sheer Band Aids in your carry on and cover up any soft spots or cuts before they get out of control.
  6. Ballet Flats (fashion needs) – Conferences mean a lot of standing and walking. Most of my day to day pretty shoes can’t handle the stress of a conference. Heels are suicide, flip flops are unprofessional and end up hurting your feet too and sneakers just look funny. A good, comfy pair of ballet flats may be your best friend at a conference. The Gap has rarely done me wrong with their ballet flats. They are pretty durable and don’t cost a fortune.
  7. Fitted suit style jacket (fashion needs) – Conferences mean leaving your hotel room at 7am and not sure if you will be back before midnight. You might have an impromptu meeting, client dinner, drinks with a friend, been added to a panel at the last minute – not to mention constantly going from warm to overly air conditioned rooms. Having a nice fitted jacket that you can easily take on and off and not look unprofessional is key.
  8. Kindle (entertainment needs) – I read a lot and I read even more when I am traveling. My carry-on usually has my laptop, running shoes, camera and 4-5 books – that gets pretty heavy. I just got a Kindle 3G for my birthday and I am SO EXCITED to bring it with me and drop about 10 pounds from my carry on. I usually have the book I am currently trying to finish, one business book and then two or three ‘for me’ books that I bring. Sometimes you want to read smart things and sometimes you want to read brain rotting things (like almost anything with a pink cover). Now I can take as many books as I want with me and it won’t ever weigh more than 8.7 ounces!
  9. Angry Birds (entertainment needs) – Find a few minutes of downtime? Have to stand in line to pick up your packet? Want to look busy so that the guy across from you won’t talk to you? Two words for you – Angry Birds. I will be very busy throwing birds at pigs in houses trying to get my eggs back. If I save the eggs on the regular version there is still Seasons and Rio to save too. They need me!
  10. Mini power strip (sessions needs) – Being a plugged in gal, I use a lot of power when I am on the move. Adam got me this great mini power strip that tucks right in a pocket in my bag. It has three spots to plug things in. I could even share with a friend, if I felt like it.
  11. Big girl camera (new places needs) – Adam got me an awesome big girl camera (Canon Digital Rebel) for my 30th birthday (it was a gift for ‘us’). I love going to new cities and if it takes a conference to get me there, I am going to find time to go exploring. When I go exploring I love having a nice camera that I can bring with me to capture the things as I see them.
  12. A good, positive attitude (all around need) – Traveling is tough, being on your feet and constantly ‘on’ is tough, being away from your family and your own bed is tough. If you don’t have a good attitude about it, you will suffer and your chances of getting sick seem to go through the roof (not a doctor, just an observation). You have to have a good, positive attitude or your time will really stink. Load up your iPod with happy songs, make yourself go home early and get enough sleep, have a good breakfast – keep yourself as normal as you can and be happy you have this opportunity!

Those are some of my top conference needs! Hope some of this helps someone else! If I forgot something just let me know and wish me and Jenika luck in DC.

Have I told you neither of us have been to DC before? This should be interesting!

Look Out World – Top 40 Under Forty! So Famous!

Famous ParkingOh 2011, you scoundrel. You sure know how to keep an emotional roller coaster going. This has already been a year of some mighty lows and profound highs. When one things goes down, another goes up.

I am now proud to tell you that I have been named one of Maine’s Top 40 Under Forty (you can read all about the announcement and event here). I will admit, I wish it was Top 33 Under Thirty-three, since there is no way I am approaching 40, but I will take it.

I do work very hard and it is really nice to have it be recognized. So thank you! Thanks for the support and thanks to the amazing people who recommended me.

I already had my really hard interview. The questions were tough! Really deep and reflective questions about where you want to be in 10 years and things like that. My brain hurt after. I have to go get my picture taken tomorrow. That will be exciting since I LOVE pictures.

One person will be featured each day. I don’t have any idea when my profile will run but I am pretty sure my mother and mother-in-law will let me know as soon as it hits the doorstep! When that happens, I will post it on Facebook and probably update this post so you can point and laugh at me.

Thanks again everyone for your support!

Photo credit: vistavision

The Thing About Birthdays…

Amandas 2nd BirthdayThe thing is for my birthday and Brody’s birthday (his is September 1st) I get really reflective. I think about where I am and where I want to be. I think this annoys Adam sometimes but I am not a party hat wearing, binge drinker on my birthday – I am usually pretty calm and I spend a good time alone and/or thinking about the state of me. I was surprised to see two men I respect professionally seem to take a similar birthday approach – CC Chapman and Chris Brogan.

Last year was the first year that I can remember that I had a hard time setting my goals. I have found and married an wonderful man who loves me very much and makes me very happy, we have a great little house of our own, we have two of the most fun dogs on Earth, I have a great family who love and support me, I have a good job that is near my home and I was feeling like I was really finding my way.

So my goal last year was more a basic idea – BETTER. I just wanted all the things I already had but I wanted to make them better. I wanted to spend more quality time with my husband, my family and my dogs. I wanted to eat better, become a better runner, take care of some things to make our house better, be a better friend, do my job better and all in all just be a better person.

I think I did a pretty good job with that. We really have had a great year. We have gotten to do some amazing things. I have spent some really great time with my family and I do feel better.

So what about this year?

Today I turn 32 **gulp** . Everything is about the same, generally speaking, as last year with some recent road blocks. My dog, who is just the love of my life is sick, my work is morphing and we are still working on getting Adam into school. Not a whole lot I can do about some of those, which is hard for me because I am ‘a fixer’.

So this year I am going to not go for specific goals but a general goal like last year. This year I want to become stronger. I have some big decisions to make, we have some changes to get ready for and I will feel more equipped to handle these things if I am stronger.

  • Stronger physically – Becoming stronger physically will help me achieve a few goals I have for running. I am not talking about entering any weight lifting competitions or anything but a little more muscle in this body wouldn’t hurt.
  • Stronger mentally – I am a constant learner. I read a lot, I write a lot, I go to a lot of conferences and webinars and I try to soak up a lot of information. I have been pretty busy lately and feel like this learning has slipped a little so I want to try to bulk up my brain a bit more this year too.
  • Stronger for Brody – As you probably know Brody has bone cancer and we recently amputated one of his hind legs. This has been beyond hard for me. I know that we are in our final chapters here but I want to be stronger for him so I can continue to make the right decisions for him and make sure our last stretch is a kick ass one. I want to make sure he is happy, knows he is loved and is well taken care of.
  • Stronger for my husband – How awesome is my husband? Pretty awesome. Our biggest ‘problem’ is that we don’t get to see each other as much as we would like (we work opposite schedules). He has a big year coming up and I want to be better about being there for him when he needs it.
  • Stronger for my family – My family is fantastic. We are unlike any other family I have seen before and I wouldn’t change that for the world. This past year I was lucky enough to get to spend more time with them. I don’t think I spent this much time with family since I was a little kid. It has been awesome. I want to keep that up and be able to help them if they ever need anything.
  • Make my company stronger – My work is in an interesting place. We are growing, moving and in the starting gates to take everything to another level. In the position I have, I am partially responsible for how that growth happens and making sure we execute it well. I want to make sure I do the best job I can growing our company for all the people that work there.
  • Be a stronger writer – One of my heroes, my grandmother, wanted to be a writer. Times were obviously different then but I can only hope she can see all of the work I do. I think she would be very proud. Writing here has been a tremendous help in finding my ‘voice’ and for sorting out some problems and sharing things that I think are important. I have a few projects I want to complete that will involve me taking writing more seriously so I want to become a stronger writer and be more confident in my own writing.

Oh, oh AND I want to make a fish tank out of a television. That is a goal for this year too 🙂 I have the television console… just need to figure out the fish tank part. I am serious.

So I guess those are my birthday goals this year – to just be all around stronger. I am excited to have a fun day with the people who love me and I hope you have a great day too! Thank you so much to those of you who take the time to read this, comment on this and support me in this weird little blogging project.

Someone Will Always Take More

Whether it is personally or professionally, someone will always take more. There is rarely ever an end… except of course the big end {gulp}.

  • On your dating anniversary, people want to know when you are getting married. When you are married, people want to know when you are having kids (when you have kids, I am not sure what they ask but I assume there is something).
  • When you give a service or product away for free, people always want to know what else they can get for free or when you are giving that item away again for free.
  • When you host an event for 85 people each month, people want to know why not have 100.
  • When you say you are running a half marathon, they ask if you will ever do a full marathon.
  • When you donate $50 to a charity, there WILL be another call, email or letter thanking you for your donation but asking for more.

So what do you do? How do you quiet the voices and the insecurities that you are not doing enough?

  1. Focus on what you have and what you have done – I heard a woman on the Today Show talking about a book she wrote. She lost all of her life savings in the Bernie Madolf scandal. It stuck in my head that she says she didn’t focus on all she lost but she focuses each day on what she has. Sometimes that meant focusing on the smallest things like being able to drink tea out of her favorite mug each morning.
  2. Remind yourself why you do what you do and what you stand for – Lines can get blurred when you are busy doing all the things you are doing and giving away your time money, expertise, friendship etc. Of course you want to make everyone happy, but you have to take care of yourself first. Or as Christopher S. Penn says, pay yourself first. My company, that pays me, is in the business of making money. If there is a venture we are going to be a part of, the goal should be to make more money for my business, so that they can inturn continue to pay me.
  3. Reward yourself and don’t leave reward up to other people – Take control of your own emotions and take the time to reward yourself. It doesn’t have to be anything special but pat yourself on the back for what you feel you contributed. That could mean just sit and reflect on how your actions helped another person, go get a Boston Shake at Red’s and call that dinner, turn off the phone and computer for a night and have a night in – whatever it take to let you reflect on your efforts.
  4. Write it down, reflect later – I am a busy person. Sometimes (this week included) I get overwhelmed. Know what? I have ALWAYS been a busy person. The first page of my Day Planner is a page from my Day Planner my senior year of high school. The thing is packed! Every day lacrosse practice or games, afterschool events, friend’s parties, work at the ice cream store etc. Every day is full from wake until sleep. My mom also forwarded me an email I sent her from college and it is a frantic description of all the things I had going on that week like tests, papers, work (upgraded to a coffee shop for college), events and meetings. When you are in the frantic-ness, you are caught in the moment but you will get out and look back and either learn something from your reflection or it will at least make you laugh.
  5. Give to someone else – Sometimes we give to people or organizations because we have to, or feel like we have to. Perhaps if you learned something new, or a better way to do something – pass it on to someone else that could use that advice, trick, tip or product.
  6. When in doubt and you feel like the world is trying to keep you down or take all you have to give with no just reward – listen to Matthew Wilder’s – Break My Stride. THAT will definitely put pep back in your step.

Feel better? I know and you know that we all are doing a lot for lots of different things. It isn’t bad to let yourself take credit for all the things you do.

Not to end this abruptly, but I have had a very long, stressful and busy week so I am going to go on a date with my husband to see the ballet – because I deserve it!