Being Thankful

candleBeing thankful is good practice.  Keeping your mind tuned in to all the things in daily life to be thankful for will change your perspective and give you a better attitude. 

 You might not like the job you go to each day, but it is paying your bills and allowing you to keep things that make your life comfortable and easier.  You might not like going to the grocery store, but thank goodness we don’t have to hike miles to get there, or are required to grow our own food or make all of our own clothes and shoes. 

Isn’t it nice to not have to go to the stream or to the well to pump water, then boil it to be able to bathe or cook?  Isn’t it nice not to have to go find a bush or walk to the outhouse like our grandparents and their parents did?  I am so thankful for indoor plumbing!

 You might not like to read, but isn’t it nice to have so much information available just by typing a few words in a search engine like Google, Yahoo, or Bing?   Isn’t it amazing that we have such extensive libraries where we can check out books that were written in places all over the world, and by authors both modern and from centuries past.  What about e-books?  Now there are so many books to choose from on just about any subject you can dream up, available with a click of your mouse.

 You are no longer required to read in daylight or by candle light.  Now you can read anytime the notion hits you.  You can read on e-readers, your computer, your tablet or phone.  It’s amazing the information that is so readily available in just about any form you can think of including audible books, CD’s and even cassette tapes.

 While on the subject, it’s it terrific that we can write and publish at will now?  What an amazing thing that we can write articles, protest, give opinions, or write blogs at will and about just about any subject!

I am thankful to be living here, right now at this time in history, because truly right now is a great time to be here.

Cherry Coley (c)

I Have A Purpose, I Do

I have read many books in the past about living with a purpose, finding your purpose, discovering your purpose, and on and on. 

They are the soul-searching books that suggest you do steps much like these: 

  1. Identify what you want
  2. Identify what you’re willing to do to get there
  3. Figure out the obstacles in your way and how to deal with them.
  4. Set definite goals.
  5. Set forth a plan of action to get you where you want to be.
  6. Achieve success

 It all sounds like good solid advice and it obviously works because people buy and read the books, right?

It’s just not all so cut and dry like that.  It’s easy to type out what you “should” do, but the actual getting down to the nitty-gritty and “doing” these things is not so easy.

 I used to get really frustrated with the self-help type books because they would make lists like the one above and being a somewhat literal person, I would stop in my tracks right there, especially if the book had assignments or exercises you were supposed to do in each chapter. 

 I would stop reading the book until I had time to really devote myself to doing what was suggested in the chapter.  Usually I would make it through about three chapters then get distracted or my time would be required to work on some other project and it could be days, weeks, months, even years before I’d make it back to the book again.  By that time I’d have to start over because things change over time.

 One of my problems has always been that being a really creative person and one that is interested in, well, everything, I get distracted easily and try to do too many things all at once.  When I was a teenager my grandmother used to shake her head and say, “Jack of all trades, master of none.”  It took me a long time to really grasp what she meant.

 After making some disastrous and not so pretty decisions with my life, not really concentrating on any one single thing long enough to “master” it and just bumping along life’s road trying this, working with that, and falling down enough times, I can say that there are three skills I have found that I needed above all others. 

 The skills I needed to fine tune, had I worked on them sooner in my life, would have allowed me to be in a far different place than I am now after learning 20 years later.

  1. Self-Discipline
  2. Focus
  3. The art of meditation

 These skills go hand in hand, and though I THOUGHT I was utilizing them throughout my life, I really wasn’t.  I was giving half-hearted efforts as needed along the way instead of really applying these skills and making them a part of my daily life.

If you truly want to live a life with purpose, then while you are doing your soul-searching, finding out who you are, your limits, your needs and what you really want to do; take the time to develop self-discipline, focus and learn a meditation technique that will work for you.  Fine tuning these things as you go will make a world of difference and when you finally do discover your focus you will be in an excellent position to focus your attention, have the self-discipline to go after what you want, and know when things get stressful you can seek meditation to clear your mind and gain perspective, then you will find you know how to deal with the obstacles and keep going.

 Cherry Coley ©

Fun With Kindle

My oldest daughter gave me my very first Christmas gift (that she bought with money she earned from her first job) this last Christmas.  It was a Kindle!  I had been kind of toying with the idea of getting a Kindle for a while since I have always been a reader and love all kinds of books.

I found the Kindle reading application on Amazon for free last October and downloaded it to my laptop.  I started out just kind of perusing all the titles out there and decided to try some of the free books first because I’m just not really much of a gambler.  I like to try things out and see if I like them before just plunging in and taking off with something new.

Being a person that worked at a bookstore for 8 ½ years I can tell you I had my doubts.  I really wasn’t sure how I would feel about reading full books and such on an electronic device, which is kind of an odd notion since I catch up on news, read blogs and all kinds of articles on computer anyway.  Then I held back because I like the “feel” of books.  There’s just something about holding the paper, feeling the pages, and using bookmarks what can I say?  So I held back for a long time before just trying things out.

Needless to say after downloading the books from Amazon on my laptop, I was pretty hooked.  After all, one thing about electronic books is that they can be interactive; which is just not something you can get from a paperback or hardback book.  You can find links to references, other books, blogs, or even moving illustrations.  Okay, so I was hooked pretty much from the moment I tried the Kindle app.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/ref=sa_menu_karl3/188-3012820-2165642?ie=UTF8&docId=1000493771

Then at Christmas Casey gave me a Kindle.  I now have close to 160 books on my Kindle with all kinds of different subjects, including cookbooks, a calendar, and a few games.  I just love my Kindle!  It’s great for the knowledge seekers like me who wind up reading 4-5 books at a time.  Amazon also lets you sync your library from laptop to Kindle so that the titles are available on both, which I love!  Now I want the Kindle Fire because it’s a bit more interactive and has touch screen features, but I will wait a bit for my upgrade. 

I buy items from Amazon a lot as well, it’s not the only on-line shopping network I use, but it is usually the first place I look for some things.  So I looked into the Amazon Prime and joined that too.  I took my time to think about it because it is $79.00 per year, but you can check out books from the Prime lending library for free, and if you watch they have special prices on all sorts of items and free delivery on many others.  After calculating things out, I decided it was well worth the investment.  I have already saved $25.00 from using Prime so I know it will pay for its self in no time at all.

So if you have not checked out the reading applications yet and are still hesitant about the idea, then try it out on your phone or computer first to see what you think.  Yes, I realize I am a bit slow, but I also know I am not the only one, so I thought I would share.

Cherry Coley ©