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Life is a learning experience. Share your knowledge or abilities where you can. This is what I'd like to share with you...

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Peace

What does this word mean to you?  It might depend on when or where you read it or hear it.  It might depend on your age.  Regardless of the dictionary meaning, it can be used to describe different ideas.  Peace can be referenced in a spiritual sense.  If you are a product of the 60's or 70's and peace signs it might bring forth an image of a hippy or naturalist.  You might think of the Coke ad of "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing".  None of those are incorrect. 

Let's leave alone the whole peace on earth statement.  For some, events in the news might invoke that word. 

For the sake of this post, my reason for bringing this up is that peace in our lives is important for many different reasons and in many different parts of our lives.  If you were to close your eyes and think of somewhere peaceful, where would it be?  We all have different visions.  We all have a vision of peace. 

I could ask you if you had peace in your life.  I'd get a variety of answers.  In our hectic lives that are often overwhelmed with technology and difficulty with other people such as co-workers or family comes drama.  Peace is often missing.  We need tranquility. 

When we become stressed our cortisol, stress hormone, level is raised.  The more it's elevated the more at risk we are for disease.  When we have stress for months or years (like me) and not just the occasional stress, it is believed to shorten our telomeres (part of your chromosomes).  The shorter they are and continue to be shortened the more likely the chance of 'mis-fires' as our cells are reproduced.  We also age more quickly when we are stressed.  I think of this like worn spark plug wires that prevent the engine from running smoothly.  The may be arcing across and not making a good connection in some cases. 

The Hormone Diet by Sara Gottfried, MD says "excess cortisol can shrink the hippocampus by killing brain cells (your hippocampus is where you store memories and regulate emotions).  Keep in mind you're already producing more cortisol as you age."  You can find her books here or on her website.  I highly recommend these if you are a woman. 

We have different parts of our life that include physical, mental/emotional, professional/work, spiritual, social/friends, and family.  Each part of your life needs to find peace individually.  While some people might have a method that can bring them to a peaceful place in any situation, I would say most of us have difficulty with that.  I encourage you to try. 

Some examples are for your physical self is exercise.  When you are sick you rest.  In your work environment when you get stressed because of co-worker, boss, or customer frustration you can't just stop in the middle of the day and go exercise to relieve stress (unless you have a super great job).  You need some other way of bringing peace to yourself.  Locking yourself in a dark janitor's closet and chilling out might not be the first choice, but I suppose for some might be an option.  It might be sitting quietly and closing your eyes and listening to your breathing.  It might be a small piece of dark chocolate.  Maybe counting to 10 slowly. 

Some of those methods might work with your family or perhaps playing a game of pool together or going for a bike ride is better.  You spend a lot of time in your work environment most likely.  The second most is probably either family if you have a significant other or are married and if single it might be friends.  Do you do better with some alone time or do you need to be surrounded by people?  Maybe to get away from family stress you go Jeep riding with friends or fishing on the weekend. 

Most of us know the ill effects of stress, but do we actually recognize it?  I suspect that it's become so much the norm or we have the feeling we can't do anything about it that we don't notice it anymore.  I want you to look at your day each day this week.  Do you have joy?  True joy where you are passionate about what you are doing and who you are around?  Can you change any of it?  When you have a problem that makes you mad, can you stop and look at all sides of it or put off sending that email until the next day when perhaps you're not so mad?

I've had situations where I was miserable and felt helpless.  I've had situations where I've been surrounded by toxic people.  It wasn't until I got to a breaking point that I did something, no matter how drastic about it.  Don't follow me.  Stop it before it gets to that point.  Let me give you some examples. 

In the early 90's I worked for a company converting their hard accounting system to a computerized accounting system.  I was qualified and there was some challenge to it.  I did some word processing and other duties.  The office manager was an interesting person, but not the kind of person that I would befriend outside of work.  She was a little cold and cruel, but I would see another side to her and managed.  The owner of the company was a woman that didn't come in the office much, but when she did it was a war zone.  She was an older southern lady with a devil's tongue and quite an attitude.  She had an opinion on everything and her opinion was the only one that counted. 

As I completed the conversion of the accounting systems the war zone became unbearable.  She pushed one day during a lunch trip stating how the Nazi's had it right and was of the opinion that the world didn't need any Jews.  I knew at that moment that I could not stay there any longer.  My husband at the time forbid me to quit (how dare he!) so I gave my notice anyhow and left.  I simply started with a temporary agency and all he knew was that I was going to work each day.  (I eventually told him.)  The agency that I started doing temp work for kept me busy every day placed me a couple of months later with the company, Jones & Frank Corporation, where I later became the CAD Manager and spent 10 years working and enjoying every day. 

Sometimes the consequences are scary.  But you do have choices.  You just might not like them or the odds.  It's in your best interest to change. 

There are toxic work environments and toxic people.  I worked with a girl named Peggy (not her real name) who was so negative.  I could see it, but I think I was blinded by just how toxic she was to be around.  I'm an optimist and a caring person.  I try to look at all sides of a situation.  If someone is mean or rude to me it might be their personality or it might be that their dog had to be put to sleep that day or their mother is in the hospital.  I try to give the person the benefit of the doubt.  I don't claim to be perfect though.  I'm a natural red-head so my temper and my mouth have gotten the better of me more than a few times in my life!  Peggy complained about everything.  The sky is too blue.  It's too bright.  It's too hot.  It's too cold.  I got the crappiest computer of anyone's.  My computer isn't working.  You know the type, right? 

For two months straight I suffered through Peggy and her complaints and helped her as much as I could.  I started seeing a pattern about the third month that it didn't matter how much I helped her, she still complained.  I didn't think she could be happy.  She complained about her husband or anything else she could explain about.  I am unsure how she managed in other jobs.  She asked if she could tag along with me one day while I ran some errands and as much as I didn't want her around I didn't see an easy way out (I could've said no!) and thought maybe something good would come of it.  As it turns out she monopolized my errands into her time and I didn't get done what I needed to and missed an appointment that I had because we were late.  I knew at that point I had to step away.  I'd been around her for three months and all I could say was that she was toxic.  I was finding myself getting caught up in some of her complaints and had to save myself.  I completely distanced myself from her and only worked with her one final time and it was a disaster.  You don't need to be around toxic people.  This includes friends. 

The moral of my very long post today is that peace is two-fold.  You need to find a way to deal with the stress in your life and find your peace.  You need to rid yourself of peace-robbing people or jobs.  Your mortality and sanity are at stake!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Back on Topic

My intention in starting this blog was to post what came to my mind and tidbits of information I was learning as I went back to school to change my career.  Obviously with the dates between the first post and this one, that didn't happen.

It's not because this is my first blog.  It's not.  I've had two very successful blogs for many years, but when looking for them recently I learned they'd been deleted.  I was heartbroken.  All the years of my writing gone.  No backups.  One was Beth's CAD Blog that contained AutoCAD tips and tricks and reviews from 2003-2010/2011.  The other one was just called Pete Powell.  It was a daily journal I kept from 2006-2009 recording my husband's journey as a Multiple Myeloma patient from stem cell transplant through his death. 

If there's anything that I've learned in life that there are circumstances that happen that you can't control.  With youth and inexperience we put too much energy in getting mad and having regrets.  I'm not saying that I don't get mad.  I have a red-headed temper!  But I find ways to get over it for my well-being physically and mentally.

I have a lot of interests and lots of areas that I enjoy studying or researching.  Through this blog we will cover all sorts of ground.  Some may interest you and some you may gloss over.  We can't all like the same things.  You won't hurt my feelings one little bit if you don't hang on every word.

Some areas of my interest are health (including eating and fitness), medical field, genealogy, crafts, CAD, entrepreneurship, personal development, collector cars and technology just to name a few.  I aim to provide what I've learned in life as well as what I'm doing today in any of the above areas that I think might interest you.  I plan to share resources such as books I think highly of and websites that I found interesting.

I generally read and listen to music each day.  I also visit Pinterest each day.  If you aren't aware of it, I consider it a bulletin board of sorts that I can categorize anything from the website that I might want to reference.  I enjoy it.

Welcome.  Come visit again soon!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

It's YOUR Life

You can do anything you want to do and at any time you want to do it.  Don't take that too literally.  I can only hope that someone in your life told you that you can do anything you want or be anything you'd like.  Not everyone has that freedom or support.  Let me be the first to tell you that you can be anything you want, but what I can't promise you is that it will be easy.

So, you started a career.  Ready for a change or wishing for a change?  Well, with some hard work you can change now matter what your age or status.  Don't let anyone tell you to wait or that you can't.  You just need to find your own way to make this happen.  Don't let life pass you by.

What do I know?  Well, I had one career goal in mind when I was in high school...well two.  I've had several dreams.  I've dreamed of being on the Jeep racing circuit and running obstacle courses.  I never had the support to follow that dream though in my own way I secretly play at that anytime I have the opportunity to off-road in one of my Jeeps alone.  I pretend I'm on the circuit.

My goal after high school was to join the military.  Not only did I think it was the right thing to do for honor, but the smart thing to do to pay for college and be trained in a career.  I worked out with former drill instructors for a couple of years and could never get closer than 12lbs. to the weight limit.

I wanted to go into journalism.  I wrote a lot for newsletters and car club publications through high school and after, but the education didn't come together for that to happen.  I took what seemed to be put in front of me and went into accounting.  It was something I could do without any thought and the lack of challenge and boredom level made for burnout in a short time.

I fell into the career that has sustained me, intrigued me, inspired me, and excited me for the past almost 20 years now.  Life goes on.  But now it's time for a change.  This new blog is part of that change.

I spent from 2002-2009 with my soul mate and heavily involved in his terminal cancer.  I learned more than I thought possible about the body, medical care, the medical system, and entering a whole new world.  After his death, I also felt dead.  A lot of what I learned and believed in had changed me.  I had a lot on my plate and when I went to go back to work I found that I no longer had a job.  Maybe I waited too long.  I don't blame anyone.  I needed the work for my sanity and without it I was launched into a long struggle to feel something again.

Fast forward to now, November 2011.  After much soul searching and freedom to do anything that I want with my life, I have chosen to enter the medical field.  I started back to school full-time at the local community college in August 2011.  While I have a degree in business, I've never taken any science courses at a college level.  So I'm finishing up my first semester in biology 101, medical terminology, and developmental psychology.

I've always been on to have passions and in learning as much as I can and sharing as much as I can.  As I learn more new topics and wrestle with ideas, this will be my place to write out my thoughts.  To share with you and hopefully make you think and learn from what you have to share.