Day: June 1, 2017

365 Challenge: Day 81 – Adaptable

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Adaptable: able to adjust to new conditions or be modified for a new use or purpose

adaptable

I debated with myself this morning whether to select “adaptable” or “open-minded” as today’s 365 Daily Challenge characteristic. I tried to engage Ryder in a little discussion, but he chose to chase birds on the terrace. Screw him, I say! BTW, don’t you just adore Legos?

Obviously, I settled on “adaptable,” {Aside: No doubt, either I’m Captain Obvious today or I should send myself back to bed!} and will save “open-minded” for next week. When I think of the word “adaptable,” besides what you see in the above definitions {Further Aside: I feel like Henry James today; dude, just get on with the post}… I think of Charles Darwin and the “Origin of Species.” For anyone unfamiliar, it’s the theory of natural selection, i.e. those who can adapt will survive longer than those who cannot adapt (in simplest terms).

Come on… let’s all channel our inner Gloria Gaynor and belt it out: “At first I was afraid, I was petrified…” OK, that’s enough. I’m the most inappropriate person to try to sing these lyrics and don’t I know it! To be serious (the point of these posts), we all need to learn how to be adaptable… meaning able to try new things, give something an opportunity to prove whether it will or will not work, and to give ourselves a small area for growth and improvement.

While I strongly believe in being consistent, it is important to know when things must change and when you must look for new opportunities. And this is where adaptability becomes significantly important. Imagine if you always did the same thing everyday in the same manner. Or you never allowed yourself to try new things. Besides being boring, you wouldn’t fulfill one of the highest tenets of life: to learn and grow.

When I reflect on how I am adaptable, I consider understanding alternative options, thinking about something with a different pair of eyes or glasses (for those who have vision trouble like me), or recognizing a new approach to process through. A few examples bouncing around my mind:

  • I wasn’t much interested in using e-readers when they first came out. I loved paper and print. I was tired of reading computer screens and phones all day long. Who needed another device? But, since I rarely say no to something without giving it significant thought, I downloaded Kindle Reader on my iPad. I gave a book a chance. And I liked it. Now, I find it’s useful when I don’t want to carry both a computer/tablet/device and a book around with me. I still read physical books throughout the week, but the e-reader had a useful purpose for me, and I adapted to its user interface, occasionally finding it easier than a physical book.

  • When I first moved into the city, I disliked everyone being so close to me. I liked personal space. A yard to have boundaries. Space to invite people over to visit. Slowly, I found things about living in the middle of an urban center that made me quite happy. I didn’t have to worry about drinking and driving, therefore I could have 10 or 12 drinks each night and still… JUST KIDDING… I can have 2 drinks and not worry about being pulled over. Without a spare room, I had less uninvited company. I could get to any restaurant rather quickly without having to drive far. I had a shorter commute to work. I adapted to the situation and found ways to like both suburbia and the city.

  • I’ve adapted to people in ways I never thought possible. I used to be quite judgmental, and to some degree, I still can be. Through the years, I realized it gets you nowhere quickly. If all you do is find something wrong with someone or something, you’ve set yourself up to always have a disappointment. Instead, I try to focus on a reason why I like someone or something, especially if it has to be part of my life for whatever time period. There are people I work with whom I don’t like. There are friends of friends I end up socializing with when I’d probably prefer having my toenails ripped off than be near them for any length of time. But that’s life, dude / chick (whatever you want to be called — my attempt at humor today)… so figure out how to adapt to the situation because it will happen again in some way, shape or form. So when I’m around them, I don’t let it consume me.

Being adaptable means you have the power.  And that’s what you need to retain no matter what. I don’t mean power as in control over other people — I mean control over yourself. If you can adapt to the situation at hand, then you can survive it. And if you can survive it, then you have a chance to keep on moving forward. I guess what I’m essentially saying… as I prepare to close out this post… is…

Conquer those feelings that keep you from being adaptable, and you’ll be more successful than you thought possible. When you have choices… when you let yourself try or consider new things… and when you move with fluidity rather than the staunch and robotic “no, I won’t… ____ <<fill in the blank>> ____ … do that!” you’re holding yourself back.

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

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A Midsummer Night's Dream Book Review
4 out of 5 stars to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a comedy written in 1595 by William Shakespeare. What a fun read! I first read this in high school and then again in college as part of a course on Shakespeare. Then I watched a few movie versions. It’s full of so much humor and creativity. The plot is essentially the impacts of magic, as some fairy dust causes everyone to fall in love with the first person they see — once the dust falls on them. Imagine the hilarity that ensues in a chain reaction of who loves who. If you want to read a comedy, this would be one of the top 3. It’s got lovable characters, lots of understandable metaphors and a ton of memorable and enjoyable scenes.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

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Review: The Last Precinct

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The Last Precinct Book Review
4 out of 5 stars to The Last Precinct, the 11th book in the “Kay Scarpetta” mystery thriller series, written in 2000 by Patricia Cornwell. I really enjoyed this book as the complexity and the psychology of the killer was top-notch. Each chapter builds on the last, and in some ways, these books keep revisiting decisions and clues from previous book… so it gets quite explosive and intense. In this one, Scarpetta needs a break from the last case where she was battered and bruised. But when she relies on a friend to help, she learns the friend is part of a trial against Scarpetta, forced into it due to circumstances pointing to Scarpetta possibly going rogue. Jamie Berger, the DA gets more involved, and we start this love/hate relationship with all the characters. This is definitely not a stand-alone book to read, you need to have read the rest of the series. It has a lot of great plot twists and characters, but it also takes a lot of energy out of you to pay attention and believe what’s happening. I still liked it and was glad to see the growth in this one… tho it started to go down hill again afterwards in future books. If you enjoy the series, you will love this book. If not, don’t pick it up here!

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: K is for Killer

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K is for Killer Book Review
3.5 out of 5 stars to K is for Killer, the 11th book in the “Kinsey Millhone” mystery series, written in 1994 by Sue Grafton. In this one, Kinsey’s life is relatively calm, which she is enjoying… until someone shows up begging for help in solving the death of her daughter. Kinsey doesn’t think she can do much, given the police haven’t found anything in the months-old trail. But the woman is convincing and Kinsey needs the money. Unfortunately, the case turns out to be brutal — and the dead girl had a very tumultuous crop of friends and acquaintances, all who have a different take on the death. And some of them don’t believe it was murder. Kinsey knows they’re hiding something and takes off on her usual path to solve another crazy case. I enjoyed the book, however it wasn’t one of the better ones. It’s smack in the middle of the series, slightly above average in the mystery world for 1990s fiction. The series took a minor slump with this book, not because it was bad, but because it just wasn’t as powerful as the rest. Still a definite read and no reason to abandon the entire series.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: The Cat Who Had 14 Tales

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The Cat Who Had 14 Tales Book Review
3 out of 5 stars to The Cat Who Had 14 Tales, a collection of short stories about cats involved in solving crimes, written in 1988 by Lilian Jackson Braun. So… as if 29 books about Koko and YumYum solving crimes alongside Qwill in Moose County wasn’t enough, Braun goes and pulls together a short story collection with 14 mini-mysteries, some with Qwill’s cats and some without… all cute reads, perfect for a short subway or train ride, a moment in between meetings and while you’re kid’s taking a nap! LOL I read them in one sitting, as they are pretty quick reads. Always fun to see the antics of cats and how they contribute to the welfare of society staying murder-free… or at least solving the case after the murders occur. Since it seems inevitable in Braun’s world — lots of death and lots of smart cats!

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: Total Recall

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Total Recall Book Review
3 out of 5 stars to Total Recall, the 10th book in the “VI Warshawski” mystery series, written in 2001 by Sara Paretsky. In this book, Paretsky tackles a prominent social issue surrounding the impact of the Nazis and the Holocaust, the war in Afghanistan and the best way to help a friend through what may seem to be a simple problem (but never is!). I always enjoy her books as it’s not just a mystery about made-up characters whom you really enjoy; it’s also a commentary on what’s wrong and right in the world and in history. And for that reason alone, this is a great book; however, I’m a little squeamish about the topic, as it is painful to read about. One of the better parts of this book is the exploration of Lotty’s and VI’s friendship. We’ve seen it thru 9 books at this point, but in this one, Paretsky breathes life into their past, and in particular, where Lotty comes form. And VI is determined to protect her friend and mentor. If I based my review alone on that component, it’d be a solid 4, but the plot unravels too much towards the end and I didn’t feel satisfied with the outcome and the connections VI shares with everyone involved. Especially given it’s the first time we really see / hear about her dating life. As a result, I knocked it down to a 3, but I’ll still keep reading this series. There’s no one like VI!

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: Julius Caesar

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Julius Caesar Book Review

In 1599, William Shakespeare published his famous tragic play, Julius Caesar. In this tragedy, he explores the effect of power and trust across many characters, those who have it and those who are hungry for it. Several memorable lines originate in this play, offering guidance on how to go about building a network of friends and an army of enemies. Most readers are familiar with the story of vengeance and betrayal when it comes to Julius Caeser, and this is the central theme in Shakespeare’s play. How do you know when you can truly trust someone? What happens when hearsay changes someone’s mind? Who do you turn to when you’ve been betrayed by someone you thought was trustworthy. These are persistent motifs across literature for hundreds of years. As one of the original literary works focusing on it, this classic has set a high standard for using one’s words versus using your physical prowess to convince someone to do something they might not normally consider doing. There are a lot of strong images and passages to re-read in this play, each giving you different slices of life and hearty challenges to dissect. Of all Shakespeare’s plays, I’d put this one towards the top of most analyzed. It’s worth a read and teaches you a bit about history, too.


About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews