#WeekendCoffeeShare. Pep Talk or Planned Timeout? #letterstomyself #amwriting

Morning, Coffee, Cup, Drink, Table

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Allison at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/ wherein I debate whether I really need a pep talk or a planned timeout this weekend.

Yeah, you may have guessed; I’m tired.  I work for an organization that educates children but seems to test them more than we educate them.  I don’t believe in the way we do things, but I follow directions well.  Testing season is upon us.  I will not dwell on it anymore, but I will add that there are many days I love to be in that room with that sea of facing, many of them smiling because they love being silly, and a few of them are even laughing or responding to my jokes.  🙂

On the bright side, I made it to yoga this week for a class that was very relaxing, yet energizing. We got a great stretch.  This is great because I woke up so sore that morning.  Today I will likely take a walk with the dog.  I also carved out two hours in the evenings to work on editing my upcoming sequel to Detours in Time.    It is good that I have that on the side, and I’m working hard to always have the energy to fit the writing in,  because I don’t have the energy to stay up past 10 p.m. these days.  It is highly possible that the time change will bring more energy and ability to extend my schedule; it seemed to work last year.  For today, I promise myself a walk with the dog, whether long or short, and a hot bath.  I also know I need to go to the bank, but that is not a treat, just a necessity.  There will also be reading time.  If two hours this week sounds too scarce for the writing/editing, maybe it is.  My day job is just so demanding lately, but I will do this.  I still think I can get this book out over the summer, which is my plan, since I will be off and have time to promote it, contact bloggers and reviewers, write guest posts, etc.

At any rate, there are lots of times I give myself a pep talk.  A writer friend named Jonas posted an idea called Letters to Myself a month or so ago.  I joined in.  Below is an extension of a Facebook challenge:  what two words would you say to your younger self.  My words are, “You Can.”  It is also a #lettertomyself, and it still rings true today.  I write because I can.

You can……. Oh yes, you can. Girl, get on up there and show ’em you can. You can say what you mean. You are allowed an opinion and it doesn’t have to agree with all the others.  You can do what you set your mind to. You can do things because YOU want to and you will still be loved even if you slip up. You can. Paint those walls. Run those bases and skin your knees. Dance that dance and fall on your butt and get back up because they will still love you and be proud of you. And if they don’t, you love yourself and one day, someone else will love you for that. Love yourself because you can. Do something silly. You will still be loved and you will love doing it. Do it because you can.

I’ll end my Weekend Coffee Share on that note.  I hope that you all have a great week!  Visit the Weekend Coffee Share to read others’ posts and/or enter yours by clicking the blue Inlinkz button at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/26/weekendcoffeeshare-empty-weekend/

“I Can Do This!” 2018 Focus

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Graphic made at canva.com ~Explanation below~

You may have guessed (or already know) that my keyword for this year is “Energy.”  I have many goals, and I am at a point in my life where I need to make them happen.  I don’t want to wait for a better time.  Even if it takes years to reach a goal, the time to start is now.

My morning mantra will be- “Let me get moving.”  That’s a great start for energy.  Of course, I’ve charted out some things I have to do.  Stretches to get limber and not feel old or sore all day.  I intend that to become like second nature to me.  Then the list goes on.

I’ve done this because I read somewhere that a resolution is nothing without a plan.  This is so true!  Working a full-time job can tire a person out.  Yet, I want to reach for more than a Mon.-Fri. workplace.  I need energy to do that.

I do hope the graphic is visible and easy to read for all.  In a nutshell, it lists what I want to become a regular part of my mindset and my daily routine in an attempt to generate more energy for my goals and to affect the world around me.  I truly believe this works.  I mentioned the morning stretches, because “Let’s get ready to move freely,” is better than “Crap, my back is sore, I HAVE to get up.”   Gratitude, music to help me get going.  Singing in the shower, expressing love to my family, asking God to inspire me to help someone else today.  Complimenting others I work with, using a 5 to 1 positive ratio for my interactions with students.  Then, there’s time to do what I love:  reading daily, a writing routine (not necessarily daily but when I am moved), blogging on my goals/progress or mindset once weekly and adding the flash fiction blog entries once or more weekly, avoiding work e-mail at home, and being thankful for it all.

My discovery of a focus keyword for this year was inspired by an entrepreneur on social media.  Mindset is such an important thing!  Truly, when you must do something physically challenging, they say to find a focal point.  Why can’t it be a word?  If you are interested, this blog post sets my intention to make Energy my focus and explains why this might help me greatly:  A Word for My Intentions

Weekend Coffee Share. “Generating Heat” #amwriting

coffee-842020__340                     Photo credit, Pixabay.

Happy Saturday, everyone, and welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at  https://eclecticali.wordpress.com  I haven’t done one of these in a while, in fact, the last time I did one my coffee was iced.  Of course, that normally wouldn’t mean anything since I am in Florida, but this past week, we’ve been going through a cold spell.  I’ve been indoors a lot, writing very little since my desk is by a drafty window.  I’ve been reading and watching Netflix, though.  I’ve been wearing layers and layers every time I step out.  We got down to the upper 20’s one night, even!  No snow here, but they did get some flurries in Tallahassee.  However, we got our share of ice.  Hence, my title, “Generating Heat.”

To generate heat, one must burn calories.  Funny, to do so also generates energy, so it all fits with my word for the New Year!  I’ve decided, instead of making a New Year’s resolution, I will focus on a keyword for the New Year:  Energy.  While I’ve had very little writing focus due to my drafty window (and the holidays) this last week, I wrote a post on my New Year’s focus word that you may view and read here, if interested: A Word for My Intentions

During the week, I attempted to visit a senior woman from church that I visit regularly.  She is in a nursing home.  Since social interaction is so beneficial, they don’t keep their patients holed up in their rooms, which is great.  However, there had been a few patients with flu symptoms, and visitors were not allowed for a few days. These things happen, I suppose.  Flu has been going around.  I can only imagine how rough that would be for elderly patients who aren’t completely mobile.  I was able to get out to get together for dinner one night with my work buddies.  It was fun, and the Italian food was excellent.  Other than that, I was indoors a lot this last week.

At any rate, in the spirit of generating energy so that I can be positive toward others, I’ve been going to more challenging yoga classes.  I haven’t even fallen down, but I sure do modify in every class.  You see, my ‘Energy’ goal will hopefully bring about better health, and even mental health, as far as positive mindset.  Positive thinking generates positive results, right?  Yes, I believe it does.  I also, having time on my hands this Winter Break, have to force myself off the couch or chair with upbeat music.  Monday, my choice was Sister’s of Mercy “This Corrosion” and then  “Danza Kuduro.”  “Danza” speaks for itself.  It is used in Zumba classes across the world, I am sure.  I used to do Zumba, and it was great exercise.  I get aches and pains these days and focus on low-impact yoga, but a 10-12 minute interlude at home is a good break in my day.  It is so upbeat, and I even remember a few of the moves from Zumba class.  Now, “This Corrosion” may not be anything you’ve ever heard of.  The Sisters of Mercy is alternative and may be even considered Gothic/Industrial, but this song was on the soundtrack for The Restaurant at the World’s End,  a funny, yet dark movie with Simon Pegg and a bunch of alien androids and a few other humans.  That’s what brought the song back to my memory.  Pegg’s character was my favorite of the humans, such a troubled, yet adventurous soul. His character even wears a Sister’s of Mercy t-shirt through much of the movie.  Anyhow, I used to dance to this sort of music, as well as 80’s New Wave, in my youth.  So, when I dance to it, I flail like an idiot, because who can remember how they danced 20-30 years ago?  I also reach down to get my dog to dance with me.  He barks the first time, then puts his feet up the next time I reach down.  It is glorious fun, such an energy builder, and thank God no one can see me!  But the dog…he may be secretly filming with a hidden camera… Oh, who cares!  It is all for the sake of being silly, and laughter burns calories too!

Music will definitely be my go-to source of energy.  I have made a pact with myself to do things that feed my energy.  My hope is the results will be a renewed energy in my job and focus/energy for writing.  My writing certainly needs to be more focused.  I don’t know how I ever got Detours in Time published in 2017, but I did.  I had a lot of help, and that is the way a professional does it.  I have written a sequel, and it is going through revision and beta-reading now.  In fact, I fleshed it out from 45,000 to 61,000 words this November.  That was my NANOWRIMO accomplishment on a small scale.  It definitely will be published in 2018, but I will need to keep my energy and focus going!  Most of what I have written lately has been flash-fiction, one of my first loves in writing.  However, one day I had thoughts running through my head about a character in the sequel whose life and goings-on I want to follow, whose story I want to tell.  He is young, a survivor, and still learning who he is.  I spent a few hours on the day of New Year’s Eve getting some of his story in writing.  We don’t control these ideas, do we? I already have a 4th installment in Norrie’s story from Made for Me, but I haven’t touched it after writing 4,000 words three months ago.  She will come to me later with more of her story.  I really sometimes believe that is the way it happens!  Writers, I am not alone in this feeling, am I?  I’d love to be more organized, but, I’ll have to go with what works for my brain.

It feels like I’m meandering here, but besides some of the brief writing “possession” and lack of focus I’ve experienced, I’ve been enjoying Netflix and went to two movies over Winter Break.  This is a big deal; I hadn’t been to a movie since Wonder Woman or Dr. Strange.  Not sure which, I may have my order mixed up; it was whichever came out last summer.  I didn’t even get out to see the new Bladerunner, and I am such a rabid fan.  I know I was busy writing in November.  No worry though, it comes out for Netflix in January and I already have it on order!  I took my mom to see Thor:  Ragnorok last week, and she loved it for the brawny Thor character and the powerful women it depicted.  She didn’t get the mythology and back-story, but I loved it all.  On New Year’s Eve, my sweetheart and I saw Star Wars: The Last Jedi.  It was a great movie!  We were in a theater with reclining seats, and I had drank a hot toddy with dinner; that may have been a mistake, but anyway, I got the gist of the movie, and I enjoyed it.  On the homefront, I have had time for Netflix and my ongoing obsession with Haven.  Audrey has come back again!  Seriously, I love this show, but my favorite was when everyone in town thought it was Christmas in July all brought about by a snow globe.  That one definitely had a Stephen King feel to it.  I’ve also already seen all of Season 2 of Glitch.  There seem to be plot holes galore, maybe because they’re saving things for the next season,  but the setting and the whole idea of second chances is quite intriguing.  I also hear there are more Black Mirror episodes.  That one really makes me think.  I have to be ready when I watch it.

Truly, I do look forward to warmer weather.  My dog can’t even enjoy his walks these days.  He does his business, then turns back toward the house.  I owe him a dog park visit come warmer weather!  Being indoors a lot, I am reading too:  still reading Outlander, the Fiery Cross, alternating between Kindle and Audiobook.  It is so long.   I’m over halfway done though, and I’ll feel very accomplished when I finish! Sometimes I take a break to read one of many books on Indie publishing, marketing, or writing.  Perhaps my word for 2019 will be Focus!  Nah, too soon to decide that.

Thanks for visiting my Weekend Coffee Share!  You may read other coffee shares and/or submit your own at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/05/weekendcoffeeshare-the-library-was-loud-and-this-weekend-will-be-quiet/   clicking the blue frog icon to enter yours.

That’s the gist of my week.  How was your week?

 

A Word for my Intentions. #amwriting #newyear

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I was reading a social media post by a young entrepreneur on New Year’s resolutions.  Instead of making resolutions, she is focusing on a key word in her New Year as she did at the start of last year.  Her results sounded amazing.

There is so much I want to do and so much I have to do to be a positive source and a strength for my family and my students.  It wears me down at times.  Sometimes I forget to tap into a source of strength for myself.  Faith is great, but I still get tired.  What do I do with my faith?  I pray that bad things don’t happen to the ones I love.  Perhaps I should be praying more often in thanks for the good that has happened, forgetting the bad and the scary road that events can take as they have in the past.  Moving forward from the past is important.

At any rate, I know the power of positive thinking.  I know that I need yoga, God and faith, my family, friends, relaxation, and healthy food.  Yet, I still could improve my attitude.  Words affect one’s attitude.  I often wake up in the morning, thinking, “Crap.  I have to get up.”  “Crap.  I can’t lay on my back anymore.” That’s a pretty crass word to use in greeting my day.  So I plan to stop making that my first word in reaction to a new day.

My key word for 2018 is going to be “Energy.”  There is so much I want to do, and I will not give up.  I plan to continue doing what I can to help others.  I will continue writing and hopefully improve my writing, publishing, and networking skills as an author.  But I  still plan to be an inspiring educator (even more than I have been), a source of strength for my son and mother, as well as a woman who is faithful to God and her own principles.  I will also know when I need to relax and give that time to myself.  These are my goals.  Energy is the word that will manifest that attitude.  I don’t have to bounce off the walls or be a gymnast.  I am talking about mental, intellectual, and psychological energy.  I will not say ‘Yes’ to everything that comes across my plate, but I will be accepting of new experiences.   (By the way, there was one year when I came close to saying yes to everything.  I don’t regret it; it was a great learning experience, but I see that it couldn’t go on forever…). I will channel my energy into achieving the results I want from life.

What’s the best that could happen?  This is what I need to focus on.  The best outcomes will be that I influence countless students to love reading and writing, that I let them leave me as more developed humans than they were before knowing me, that I become a source of strength and giving to others rather than a collector or hoarder of objects, money, or knowledge, and that I become a writer who is never out of ideas and never too beaten down to improve my craft, never too hopeless too continue or too broke to take a break from working and do what I really, truly love.  All of this is in addition to having time for my family and loved ones, enjoying time and sharing of myself with my boyfriend, friends, etc.  In doing these things, I want to feel I have some measure of control over what I am doing in my life.  I will not be a slave to money.  Or fame, or any other contest whereby I’m judged or measured up by the numbers.  This is the best that could happen.  I will not even voice the worst.  Why?  Because I am not worried about it.  It does not exist unless my thoughts can breathe life into it.  Having wasted parts of my life on worry, I see the results it can have.  I’m not going to worry about it.

This goes back to a favored quote by Nikki Giovanni,  writer, poet, activist, and educator.  This quote spurred me on when I was a 20-year-old college student, questioning my place in the world and where my priorities lay.

 “There is always something to do. There are hungry people to feed, naked people to clothe, sick people to comfort and make well. And while I don’t expect you to save the world I do think it’s not asking too much for you to love those with whom you sleep, share the happiness of those whom you call friend, engage those among you who are visionary and remove from your life those who offer you depression, despair and disrespect.” – Nikki Giovanni

If you’d like to read more about my thought process at age 20 (I sure needed a lot of work) and how she inspired me just by writing the words I needed, please see my blog entry at Nikki Giovanni, You Inspire Me! 

This year, instead of worrying on the worst that could happen, I will live a life of purpose and spend my time and my words on voicing the things I wish to come about.  All of this will be centered around the key word:  Energy.

I’ll let you know after this year how it works!  If you were to choose a key word for this year’s intentions, what would that word be?