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365 Challenge: Day 268 – Settle

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Settle: (a) adopt a more steady or secure style of life, especially in a permanent job and home, or (b) accept something less than what you want

quote

When I opened my laptop this morning, I clicked on the news to see what if anything major happened overnight. I somehow hit an extra button too quickly and this quote popped up on my screen. I saw it as a sign given how important it’s become to me:

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”                      -Steve Jobs

There are days when we feel like it’s time to settle — to just accept whatever it is before us rather than push for what we want. Fight through it. It might be appropriate in some situations, but it’s never appropriate in all situations. It was 18 (eighteen) months ago [today] that I made the decision to leave my corporate position in technology and focus on one of my passions: writing. I am grateful for this opportunity and I have enjoyed every moment since then. I wish only the same for all of you. Life is good.

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. 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.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

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365 Challenge: Day 226 – Studio

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Studio: (a) room where an artist, photographer or sculptor works, or (b) film or television production company

studio

When I first thought of the word studio today, I remembered the movie ‘Studio 54.’ I rather enjoyed that movie, as I’m fascinated by all things from that generation. I missed it by a few years, but that might be a good thing; who knows how different my life would have been if I grew up in the 60s and 70s… but those are not the two definitions of today’s word that I plan to discuss.

Who has a studio, whether it’s in your home or in some other location? I’m envious of you. It sounds professional, charming and artistic. To have a space you can go where you create beauty and life, but have little worry or interruption. To be able to tell someone you’re off to the studio for a few hours… sounds amazing. All your materials, stored in one location, ready for your fingers and mind to develop something from scratch. Whether you paint or sculpt, draw or write, create greeting cards or gifts, it’s a passion we can hopefully all identify with in some way. Living in NYC does not make it possible for me to have a studio, unless I were to rent a space in a distant part of one of the boroughs. And even then, real estate is just too expensive. I think when I move back to the suburbs (it will happen), one of the requirements is a studio, where I can truly separate myself from my work and my life. Although I love my role these days, it feels 24/7. A studio might offer that special place where you can find the magic without being in the same place all day long.

The other kind of studio fascinates me almost as much as a personal space of creativity. Does anyone here work in a music, movie or television studio where you produce entertainment day after day? Imagine being part of creating a story in words or pictures that brings enjoyment to millions of people whenever they hear or see the final product? I was surprised to learn that a studio opened in my tiny hometown on Long Island. I grew up in Bethpage, New York, where the only famous thing about it, well two famous things, or three if you count me (ha, that’s was seriously awful)… was (1) Grumman, an aerospace company that built tons of weaponry and airplanes and (2) Bethpage was once known as Central Park, but 1920s New York inhabitants and visitors got confused whenever people said “I’m going to Central Park.” Did they mean the NYC park or the sleepy Long Island town? Today, Grumman Aerospace is much smaller and a huge piece was converted to Grumman Studios, where several movies and TV shows are filmed. It’s cool to think that happens in your hometown, but even more cool when you tour studios across the country. I’ve been to a few in California, always enjoying the backstage looks and scenery. I feel the power and energy of something being born within those walls. And it’s amazing to walk through outdoor spots you recognize from your favorite shows.

Maybe someday I’ll be involved in a studio production of something I’ve written in my own home studio… a boy can dream… I enjoyed today’s word, but it was not one I thought of on my own.  Thank you to the wonderful Janet’s Smiles for today’s 365 Daily Challenge word idea! If you don’t know or haven’t met her, go check out her site for her wonderful approach to life. Maybe she’ll tell us how she feels about the word ‘studio.’ I enjoy her posts as they make you laugh, believe and smile. Kudos to Janet!

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. 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.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

365 Challenge: Day 165 – Push

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Push: to exert force on (someone or something), typically with one’s hand, in order to move them away from oneself or the origin of the force

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You will always encounter a roadblock or a deadline where you need to simply push through until you find a solution or achieve the goal. Sometimes it’s easy, but it can also be difficult. Maybe you have the pressure being forced upon you by someone else, or perhaps you’ve given yourself a deadline to get something done. Knowing your limits is key to success. But failing to see your potential might prevent you from reaching it more than you know. There is time to push yourself even if it feels scary.

Today’s 365 Daily Challenge word is meant to turn your world upside down a little. Have you ever thought to yourself that you can only get so much done in a specific period of time? Or scheduled a goal that is realistic and reasonable, yet feels like it’s not enough? When I assigned myself the deadline to finish writing a first draft of my second book, Father Figure, I assumed 3 chapters per week could be written and edited. When I did the math, I ended up with a 9/30 deadline. Then I scheduled a vacation from 9/17 thru 10/1, which meant that completing Father Figure needed a new deadline. Scary thoughts.

But I told myself I could push through it and complete the first draft by 9/16, then let it sit for two weeks while I was away. Both the novel and I needed some time to relax, find our heart and prepare for a vicious round of editing. So I upped it to 4 chapters per week and re-set the deadline to 9/16. I got this. I’m good under pressure. For some reason, I felt the need to push myself a little harder. I love these characters. I breathe the air that they breathe right now. And I wanted to spend more time with them. Push. Push. Push. Through it, I kept motivating myself.

As you’re aware from last Friday’s status update, I decided to give myself a goal to finish 6 chapters this week and next week so that I could be done writing a first draft by 9/1, and then spend the first half of September editing it. I finished 6 chapters today at 12 noon, meaning I met the deadline I had doubled in half the time I’d planned. And then I said…. go for it. I pushed harder and wrote another chapter this afternoon, leaving me only 5 more to go before I can say it’s done. If I were a betting man, which I am known to be, I think I’m capable of pushing myself to write those 5 chapters tomorrow and Friday so that I have a first draft of the whole book by the end of this week, leaving me 3 full weeks to edit before I leave on vacation.

No, I am not bragging. I promise you. I have no idea how the quality is despite my faith in the quantity I am capable of delivering. But there is a great lesson here… sometimes it’s okay to push yourself. When you push yourself, you learn how far your boundaries can truly be tested. This doesn’t apply for all situations, all people and all times. But when you have a passion and a goal, and you can skim a few minutes off of all the things that steal your time away, imagine the capabilities you can unlock within yourself. I couldn’t keep up this pressure 24/7 every day of every year. But when things line up in the right way, we are all capable of pushing ourselves towards a safe and secure path.

It’s your life to choose what you want to do or how you want to live it. When you push through a little bit of pain and worry, sometimes you find the gold at the end of your own rainbow. I’m keeping this post shorter than usual today because I’m pushing towards my goal to complete this novel by the weekend. If at any point I feel the quality is truly suffering or I’m in any sort of pain (physical or emotional), I’ll back down. But if I can do this in an environment where I have friends and family to catch me if I fall, then it’s all the more reason to give myself the push I didn’t know I needed. That I didn’t know I deserved. Thank you to everyone for believing in me. I appreciate you.

A push to help a friend, or shove to knock him down? You decide!

Now it’s my turn to believe in you. What can you do to push yourself in the next few days towards achieving one of your goals — in a safe and secure environment — to see how strong you really are? I have confidence. So should you. Let it roll…

 

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.

365 Challenge: Day 164 – Work

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Work: mental or physical activity as a means of earning income; employment

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As I began preparing my Sunday post for the next round of jobs, I realized that I never covered what the concept of a job means. I found something I had drafted in part awhile ago, realizing it was apropos to dust off and release as a clean and new version to stimulate our 365 Daily Challenge discussions. For most of us, jobs exist to provide money to meet the basic staples of life:  food, water, shelter, warmth, etc. For some of us, jobs aren’t a requirement (That’s not me!). We may have a significant other, parent or spouse who pays the bills. We may be retired or amassed an income of wealth where work is no longer necessary.  We may be too sick to work.  For those of us who work because we need to “put the roof over our head,” there is an extreme variance between selecting a job we like and selecting a job we do not like.

Our jobs are generally chosen early on in life… or at least the general type of job or industry we will work in.  When we finish school (be it grammar school, high school, college or graduate work), we enter the workforce in some fashion.  Many of us choose — and are lucky enough — to go to college for 4 years right after high school.  By my fourth year, I was tired of school and wanted to enter a true workforce.  And I did, but I never went back for a graduate degree, which I do regret in many ways and find myself contemplating whether I should do so now.

Regardless, by choosing college, we choose to enter a certain type of workforce where we are in the business world putting in a typical 8 to 9 hour day, 5 days a week and the occasional night or weekend overtime requirements… (ok, for me it’s more like 12 hours a day and way more than occasional nights and weekends — but that’s an entirely different thread from this one.)

Whether we’re in technology or finance or sales or marketing or human resources doesn’t matter.  What matters is that there is a fairly routine expectation of putting in a full day’s work for a full day’s pay.  Our pay grows as our experience and commitment grows. It’s up to each individual person to find their own work-life balance, at least in the USA where they like to work you to the bone!

But what if it’s still just a job.  We may have good days. We may have bad days. Sometimes the unsettled feelings we have can go on for years.  We can blame the culture of the company, or we can blame ourselves for staying for so long.  We can blame our family for living in the same place, making it hard for us to want to move somewhere else, or we can blame society for making changes and transitions too difficult.  We can blame a lot.

And that’s probably part of the issue.  We really should only blame ourselves.  And blame only goes so far.  We can choose to leave. We can choose to move on. We can choose a different path.  Yet we haven’t always done so generally for fear of losing money or not being busy.

So I started thinking… do we know what will make us happy in a job?  We’d all like to think so, but are we really sure…  Is it about the hours?  Is it about the pay?  Is it about the people?  Is it about the volume?  Is it about the benefits? Well, actually… shouldn’t it be about the actual work?  Shouldn’t it be about tasks that we enjoy doing?  Shouldn’t it be in an industry we relate to?  Shouldn’t it be about something in which we have strong interest?

The answer is  generally “yes” for most people; it is undoubtedly “yes” for me. Some folks want a job that is different from all the things they need or choose in their life simply to have variety or to not get too invested or attached in any one single thing.  For most of us, it needs to be something we have passion for.  Passion not in an obsessive way. Passion in a way where we enjoy doing the work all day and although the day is over, we want to go home and get away for a bit because we know it will be there again the next morning and will continue to keep us happy.

Back to blame…  we can’t blame others for not letting ourselves get to that “yes.”  We have to make the plan. We have to prioritize all the steps and pieces. We have to weigh each item and possibly decide some needs won’t be met immediately.

If we keep telling ourselves this and thinking beyond the immediate perimeter, we will eventually start to believe.  But it’s hard. And it always will be unless we keep at it every day until it becomes part of our routine and experience. We need to get away from blaming, complaining and getting frustrated.   We have to put ourselves in the driver’s seat and accept all the decisions we need to make to move forward.

I chose to follow my heart last year around this time and left a very promising career in technology (you’ll hear all about it in Sunday’s post) to become a writer (which you’ll hear about in the following Sunday’s post). It’s not easy. It’s scary. But there isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t realize how grateful, lucky and happy I now am.

How have you chosen your jobs or made the changes necessary to get in the driver’s seat for your career? What’s next in your occupational world?

 

 

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.

365 Challenge: Day 88 – QuestMaxGoaly

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QuestMaxGoaly: to question how to achieve the maximum goals throughout your life, searching for a fair balance across all the things which bring you happiness and showcase the best you possible

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{Aside: This is NOT a made-up word. It’s in the new dictionary I previously wrote. So there. Deal with it. Go find your own QuestMaxGoaly and don’t complain to me if you haven’t come across this word before. Every book reader or blog reader should know it by now, and well, if you don’t, then we shouldn’t be following one another. I mean, seriously, it’s a very famous word to some one!}

I’m doing something a little different with today’s 365 Daily Challenge post. As I looked over a list of characteristics, nothing appealed to me. I couldn’t choose a word, so instead, I’m just going to blog about a topic on my mind and hope that an appropriate word sums it all up in the end. Let’s chance it! {Aside: As you can see, I did stumble across the word.}

chance

What’s on my mind this morning is “how does one go about their day to get the most done in the shortest amount of time possible?” in terms of achieving their goals, feeling accomplished and/or doing something they love versus what they have to do… so a few thoughts on my day and then the usual questions to the group.

It’s fairly ordinary for me to wake up a couple of times each evening, thinking about what I need to accomplish the next day. It’s not always that I’m extraordinarily busy and can’t sleep; it’s just that I spend a lot of my time considering the best approach to getting things done throughout the day.

A few examples:

  • Blogging & Social Media
    • When I first wake up, I grab the phone from my night-table to peruse whatever notifications or messages have arrived overnight. Given I’m chatting and communicating with people from all over the world, I’m not too surprised to find there are usually hundreds of things to read. Sometimes it’s comments on my posts, likes or new follows to review and respond to, or requests to connect. Then I scroll through all the feeds to see what my friends have all posted so that I can read their messages, like their posts, or comment on what they’ve had to say.
    • Sometimes, 30 minutes has passed and I haven’t gotten out of bed. Other days, I stand and read them on my phone while the coffee is dripping and I’m making Ryder’s breakfast. On occasion, I’m 2 hours into trying to get through everything, feeling like I’ve lost so much time and accomplished nothing “tangible.” So what’s the best alternative?
    • Things on my mind:
      • Should I limit my viewing time in the morning?
      • Do I save everything for at night when I’ve finished all my other obligations?
      • Do I try to catch-up throughout the day and respond as I have time?
    • This is one of those areas where it would be an interesting productivity study to see which would be the ideal approach to utilizing social media and my blog to connect with other people without wasting time through repetition of seeing or reading the same things over and over again just trying to find the new content. It’s not unlike managing one’s email accounts, now is it?

  •  Cleaning
    • I feel the same way about cleaning the apartment. I’m currently in a mode where roughly every two weeks, I’m doing a thorough cleansing, e.g. vacuum, dust, sweep and polish the floors, scrub the bathroom, wash the kitchen appliances… and in between, laundry and changing sheets and towels. With a dog who sheds a lot, there’s often flying fur about, which drives me a little cuckoo. The whole routine takes about 5 to 6 hours, but I literally do nothing but clean. I don’t stop for meals. I don’t answer the phone. I don’t take a break. So it gets done. But in between, I’m constantly wiping down counters, light upkeep in the bathroom or an extra load of laundry, etc. Is this the best approach? Do I really need to be this clean? Who will judge me when the end comes? You didn’t clean enough, no soup heaven for you!

  • Reading and Watching TV
    • My two favorite hobbies. I have a stable of shows that I watch and don’t often just sit and surf the TV. If I need to watch something and I have nothing recorded, I’ll look for a movie or a new series. But I rarely just randomly sit to watch something. Same with books. Always a backlog of things to read between series I love, ARCs coming up or things on the TBR.
    • But often, I find myself tired or busy with everything else, these kinda get pushed to the bottom. I supposed that’s the right approach, as there are obligations and requirements which come first, then the fun stuff. Right?

So… I think that’s my point today… when I think about how to go about my day life, how to choose the things to take up each of the 24 hours 110 years (yeah, I’m living a long time), how many of us actually consciously think about what we’re doing and why we’re doing it… for example:

  1. What drives your choices each day? Family? Religion? Desire? Money?
  2. Our purpose (ignoring religious views) cannot be to fill up 24 hours with tasks, right? We should reserve time for the ability to do nothing.
  3. Do we work to earn enough money to pay the bills and afford a few hobbies, such that we can maximize our free time to enjoy the things we love to do?
  4. Is it OK to choose to achieve less in a job than you are capable of so that you can have more flexible “you” time?

My initial answer is that it’s all about balance; and balance is a different proportion for everyone. I believe these questions are heavily on my mind, as I think about how to apportion my day so that I achieve something on all the levels I want to reach and not just what I’m supposed to do per expectations. We all feel this way. We all have responsibilities based on the choices we make, e.g. married or not married, kids or no kids, live on our own or with someone, travel or stay put. We also have our own limitations, e.g. types of jobs, illness, age, etc. It seems to me the most important thing out of all of this (again, forgetting about religious beliefs), is to consciously save time every day to think about these things and evaluate where you are in regard to where you want to be. Either that… or you’re all thinking:

So… the real question back out to you: Do you ever take time to think about how to order the things in your life and the time in your day to ensure you are accomplishing everything you want to, e.g. weeding out the things that just waste your time, choosing you over what everyone expects you to do, changing the stuff that you realize doesn’t belong being there?

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.

365 Challenge: Day 48 – Generous

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Generous: showing a readiness to give more of something, as money or time, than is strictly necessary or expected; showing kindness toward others; larger or more plentiful than is usual

Everyone is generous at some point in his or her life; however, we are also stingy from time to time. It’s often a matter of what’s being asked of us, our level of available resources and our mind-set. I’m no exception, but I will say outright that I am not as generous as I should be and want to be. And it’s something I need to work on.

For the purpose of today’s post, rather the cover examples of how I’ve been or not been generous, I’d like to discuss why it is people often struggle with being generous. It comes down to a few key things — in my opinion:

  1. Fear: It is easy to be afraid to do something. Perhaps you feel you don’t have enough money or time to share, so you hold back rather than lend or donate. Or maybe when you’ve been too generous with someone in the past, they’ve taken advantage of the situation. (No judgment here; each person should determine what is best for for him or herself, or how to handle relationships with others).
  2. Laziness: Often, we want to be more generous, but don’t make this a priority because we forget to think about it. (Again, no judgment; we are all aware of our own selfless level of thinking about things outside our own realm).
  3. Unknowing: I’ve found people are unsure of how to be more generous or knowledgeable about the ways they can actually follow through on it. (Double again, no judgment; we’re not always shown or taught the way to find these options on our own).
  4. Exhaustion: At the end of the day, we’re so busy focusing on the things we NEED to do, we forget the things that we SHOULD do. That said, there is an argument for saying being generous is a NEED and not just a SHOULD. (Yup, you guessed it about judgment… sometimes we just have no energy left, I get it).

I’m sure there are other reasons, and perhaps they don’t fall into 1 of these 4 categories in the most appropriate way, but that’s where I’ve gotten to in my head on this topic. Let’s look at ways to improve how we are doing in these areas:

  • Fear
    • Determine why you are afraid and either confront it, remove the roadblock or ignore it and move forward. Don’t stall or freeze by doing nothing.
    • If it’s fear of being taken advantage, find ways to limit the impact back on you. Or choose to be generous with others and not with that person if for some reason (s)he always takes advantage of it.
    • If it’s fear of doing something on your own, i.e. volunteering somewhere, find a buddy and go with someone else the first time.

  • Laziness
    • Make a note, send yourself an email or leave a reminder on your calendar to find 15 minutes a week where you do something for someone else — not just yourself.
    • Associate something you love to do with a method for being generous. If you have a secret ice cream fetish and go every Tuesday night, tack on 15 minutes to (1) buy a cone for someone else (if you can afford it), (2) clean up some garbage in a park on the way to the ice cream store, (3) donate books to a shelter for someone to have the ability to read.
    • Find something you love to do and figure out how to share it with someone else who doesn’t have access to it as easily as you do.

  • Unknowing
    • Ask your friends, colleagues or acquaintances.
    • Look it up on the internet.  You obviously have access if you’re reading this post (not meant sarcastically!). Find something local that would work for you.
    • Drive or walk around your neighborhood and see what is already there — or what’s missing. See how you can be of help.
    • Think about your relationships… is someone is need of a friend a little more often? Could you buy someone lunch once a week if you know they are struggling financially to support him or herself?

  • Exhaustion
    • Schedule it. Block out 30 minutes a week, an hour a month, whatever works for you. Make it part of the routine, not something you do if you have free time.
    • Start small. Increase as you can. Don’t take on too much at first.
    • Save coins you don’t use until it adds up enough to buy a cup of coffee, a meal or a coat for someone else.
    • Take a break from the things you don’t need to do every minute… don’t clean for 3 hours one day, only use 2 hours and save that last 1 hour for someone else who needs your help. Your house won’t fall apart. Another person can pitch in that last hour.

Here’s the deal (yikes, I’m sounding direct in this post when I really mean to just think aloud)… I have done maybe 10% of the things I just suggested. I’m not as generous as I should be. And just sitting here typing this kinda cements it for me. It’s time I became a bit of a better person. So my commitment to YOU — I will take on 2 new things (from what I’ve listed here) in the month of May. And I’ll report back to you (hold me accountable please) to review it. The good, the bad and the ugly.

With all that said, do you know of any other reasons besides these four (4) items that contribute to our lack of generosity with others?  I’m flat out ignoring the fact that some people just don’t care to help others or be considerate. So reject that one!

Whether it’s giving more time, spending more money or being more open-minded, what stops you from being more generous? Or… tells us how you are a generous person and offer some suggestions on how we can be even better. Thanks!

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay. I am 40 and 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.

 

365 Challenge: Day 41 – Rich

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Rich: having a great deal of money or assets; wealthy

It seems I now wake up with the 365 Daily Challenge as the first thing on my mind. How interesting in both a good and a bad way. Today, I waffled between “rich” and another characteristic, which I will save for another time. I could be rich with love, or rich with friends. Rich with health, or rich with intelligence. But today I want to talk about being rich with money. And before you start thinking I’m bragging… I am not talking about being rich right now. When I first started this challenge, I planned to cover traits or things I had, as well as ones I want. And today is going to be all about wanting to be rich.

I’ve probably stirred up one of two, possibly both, thoughts in you right now. And trust me, I’m feeling the same. “Money is the root of all evil” versus “I need and want all the money in the world.”  Today will be about why I’d want to be rich. I’m not going to spend a lot of time on why it’s bad and how it could lead to problems. Perhaps another day it will be an appropriate blog post. For the next few minutes, it’s all about the good things and not about the consequences or issues that go hand-in-hand with having lots of money.

One of the motivating factors in my life has been to earn as much money as possible, without completely stressing out or killing myself. And for a number of years in my corporate position, I climbed that ladder trying to move higher and higher to get each promotion and add a salary boost. It was great and I often am right in my element in those conditions. But “why” was always on my mind… and as I reflect, I think it’s a fairly simple answer: If I were rich, I wouldn’t worry so much about money and I’d be able to just do the things I want to do without fear of it running out some day.

If I were rich, I’d like to think I’d be the kinda guy who would use it wisely. I wouldn’t throw money around on flashy things. Of course I’d buy that mansion, improve my wardrobe, vacation in amazing locations and eat at really expensive places. But that would be a very small piece of my life. I won’t deny I want those things. And I won’t sit back and say I’d help the rest of the world and give a lot away. Of course that would be part of what I’d do. But how… why… where… that’s why I’d dream of being rich.

As shy of a person as I am, I thrive on helping and connecting with other people in settings where I feel comfortable and safe. If I were rich, I’d pick something every day/week/month (whatever is the right frequency) and execute it myself. I wouldn’t open a foundation to help certain groups of people… well, maybe I would as something someone else runs because it’s a good thing to do… but what I mean to say is that I’d drive the use of the money in ways that allow me to use the time with clear focus and care.

I’d buy a collection of books, set up a travel schedule and bring them to key places across the country/world where I could read and interact with children in need, sick folks in hospitals or even those who simply can’t afford to buy books. I’d want it to be an intimate experience where I know I’m helping and can see the benefits for someone else. Of course I could do this now, every so often, thru a volunteer experience, but to be able to do this every week in different parts of the world would mean I couldn’t be working, hence I’d need to be rich to not have to worry about all that other stuff (bills, expenses, etc.) Being able to use money for a good reason without just giving it away or paying someone’s medical bills (all good things to do) has a separate value that feels exceptional to me. Imagine knowing a group of children have never read Peter Pan or Charlotte’s Web… and you bring together 3 or 4 people who put together a little play, dress up, read to the kids, talk about the author, explain the lessons, apply them to each of lives… show them what a farm is, connect it to how farms produce food for us, bring in a sample of vegetables they’ve never had or seen…

I’d setup a small learning center where every month we’d have a new topic and invite people in free of charge to learn about key things in our lives. Everything from history to languages to survival guides. With real life people who know all about the topic, lived it or had connections to it. Things people need to see and do, that you can’t get from a museum or reading online on your own. Create the connection between speaker and listener in an educational and fun way. Do something more than just volunteer for an hour or give the basics and walk away. Mentor. Teach. Coach. Bond.

I’m sounding a bit like Pollyanna… but I often look around me and think… we’re doing this in small increments, but it’s not enough. And yes, I do volunteer now on occasion and practice this in much smaller ways. It needs to be bigger and more robust. But I’m not rich and can’t just take a chance on a new career like that… I’m not that big of a risk-taker. But if money were no object, I believe I’d be able to live in a way that would help so many people directly… not by handing out money or loans that often never go to the right places… but by doing things with my time to change the world.

And that’s why I’d want to be rich. Yes, I’d enjoy the frills that come with it, but I promise it wouldn’t be my focus. There is a career in here somewhere. Perhaps I need to become more entrepreneurial. Or take a risk somewhere with a security blanket. Any rich people out there wanna help out? 😛

Would you want to be rich? Tell me why or why not…

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay. I am 40 and 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.