Tag Archives: work

Why don’t you just …..

Get a job.

Get a better job.

Stop eating so much.

Not let them get to you.

Give up those bad habits.

Stop spending money .

Live within your means.

Make your kids do it.

Stay positive .

Go to college.

Get organized.

Fix it.

Deal with it.

Ignore them.

Because all of these require multiple steps or changes in long established routines and habits and thought patterns and some require other people to change or cooperate and we can’t make them.

Especially if you’re dependent on someone else to support you.

When does one decide to work nights , quit trying to one-sidedly improve dying relationships, trust others with “your job” so you can go earn money, separate emotionally from a negative person , risk the fallout, deal with the backlash, accept that things are not getting better? That things are not going to change unless you change things? Stop going along to get along ?

Head in the sand. Denial . Refusal to act. Blame game . Paralyzed . Blind. Faithless. Anger. Victim mentality. Self focused . Procrastination. Unreasonable expectations. Pride.

First step is honest self-assessment. Next is fearlessly looking at possible action steps. Be open to unconsidered ideas. Choose a plan. Then do it! Get help from professionals, mentors, positive friends, support groups. Continue to pray and seek God throughout the process .

If you don’t change , don’t expect life to change.

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I’m special. And so are you.

Not the special snowflake thing ! Not a fake kind of learned specialness that actually hinders your personal growth because you are obsessed with yourself. Not an inability to cooperate, cope, and communicate in a meaningful way with other humans.

What then? Well let’s look up Webster’s definition of  special. 


special

adjective

spe·​cial | \ ˈspe-shəl  \

Definition of special

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1distinguished by some unusual quality especially being in some way superior our special blend
2held in particular esteem special friend
3areadily distinguishable from others of the same category UNIQUE they set it apart as a special day of thanksgiving
bof, relating to, or constituting a speciesSPECIFIC
4being other than the usual ADDITIONALEXTRA
5designed for a particular purpose or occasion

While it’s nice to have unusual or superior qualities and be esteemed by friends, and and/or be unique or unusual, I especially like number 5: designed for a particular purpose or occasion. 
Everyone needs a purpose in life and that does not mean, to be served by others or to ‘get what you got coming to you’ or to ‘eat, drink and be merry until you die’. Some people seem to figure out their purpose at a young age, work straight towards the goal, pursue that purpose, and live very fulfilling lives. But that seems less common these days, at least it seems that way to me. I find that many young people and even older people feel lost and unsure of any meaning or purpose in their lives. They fill up their time with mind-numbing pursuits but they feel rather empty and depressed. Depression, drug addiction and other addictions are often a result of having no direction or purpose in life.
Why are so many people so unhappy, bored, seeking meaning in the wrong places, staying numb? I believe that the so-called special snowflake mentality leads to those things. Focusing way too much on one’s own feelings and desires and entitlements can ONLY lead to disillusionment with life. It’s simply not realistic or even desirable to expect to have the whole world cater to you and make you happy.
 I won’t blame this on one political party because I think both parties are responsible for pushing the idea that everyone should get what they want, how they want it, in words that don’t offend them, at the price they like, in the color they like, etc, etc, and that this is possible and affordable and will happen if you just vote for them! Reality, logic and patience  have become a thing of the past. Too many people are living in fantasy land. Of course, that fantasy land is mostly in what many people think SHOULD happen, not what they are actually experiencing, which leads to a major disconnect between what they have been told to EXPECT and what they are actually getting. This leads to anger, discontent, comparison with others, ingratitude for the good things they do have, constant searching for ways to get this fantasy life, blaming others that they mistakenly believe are responsible for their situation, even more escapist behaviors and the terrible division that we have in our country. That is the bad kind of special.
The good kind of special is that you are a unique, God-created human being that is not exactly like any other human being and you were born with a purpose! Your purpose is to grow, learn, and eventually become an adult that will use the majority of their time serving God and OTHERS with your unique talents, skills or knowledge. Not stay a perpetual child that expects to be treated like mommy’s favorite. The most fulfilling activities are those that help others in some way. Your job title may say something basic like customer service, teacher, manager, driver, nurse, or teller. Or you may be a CEO, business owner, or scientist. You can find a way to serve and make a difference in people’s lives in any job. And if possible, you can also volunteer and serve in your community in various ways. Even stay-at-home moms can contribute so much in many different ways to the lives of others. In fact, being a parent is one of the jobs that is impossible to do well if you are selfish.  The idea is to have the attitude of JOY, that we learn in Sunday School. JOY = Jesus, Others, You,  the correct order of importance in our lives.
Putting others first and using our special talents to serve seems to come naturally to some and harder for others. But there are things you can do to improve.  I read an interesting article that said that in one study, if people were shown a photo of money in the beginning of an experiment, they were less likely to act helpfully to someone who pretended to need help. They didn’t know that was the test , of course. The hypothesis is that our brains get ‘primed’ and that can set us up for a certain way of acting and reacting. They suggested to prime your brain with positive thoughts and images in the morning to start the day off right.  You can Google it and find tons of articles on the psychology of priming. I suggest priming your brain with a prayer of gratitude before you even get out of bed. Then read some Bible verses either in your Bible or on your social media feed that you are reading on the toilet.  Haha! Yes, I do that, too.  Set your social media feed up  so that you see that kind of positive input instead of negative articles, memes, and other junk that will prime you for anger, entitled feelings, self-loathing, discontentment, and hopelessness.
Then evaluate your life and think about how you are spending your time. Or you using your special personality, knowledge, understanding, skills, talents or financial resources to help others? Are you taking the time to talk to someone who might need a kind word or some helpful information that you have? Are you willing to give up some of your self-focus to discover the true joy that comes from focusing on others ? Maybe you are still in high school or college or barely into your first job. That’s okay! You can still help create a positive environment for others by choosing to think of how your words and actions affect others and considering other people’s perspectives. Be the person who brings peace and calm to a tense situation. Be the person who gives honest compliments. Be the person who asks the new person to go to lunch. Be the person who doesn’t complain, gossip, or create drama.  All of those things can make a huge impact! And you will feel good doing the right thing with your special touch.
Lastly I’d like to add that there are messages all around us that want you to put your needs first, have ME time,  be number one, all that. Those messages appeal to our selfish ego or flesh as God calls it. It takes effort to ignore and overcome those messages. Why do they push it so hard? Because they are SELLING things that they promise will make you happier. It’s a lie. Things will not make you happier if you are a selfish miserable person. Things can be fun and are not bad. But shopping and accumulating bigger, newer and more things is not your purpose in life! There is a whole segment of the world that doesn’t even have basic necessities like clean water and food.  Do some reading on poverty in this country and you might be shocked.  If you are young and single, consider doing some kind of work for a few years to help the less fortunate in this or other countries. If you are not so free, maybe consider donating to the causes. But even if you can’t do that, you can be a good citizen in your community by picking up litter, voting, and finding ways to contribute with your unique personality.  God made you for a reason. Don’t miss out on the blessings you’ll get from serving others. Remember, You are special! You have a lot to GIVE.

If we, I mean, We will make it through December! Race week !

I started this post on Wednesday night. It was going to be about how crazy the past two weeks have been. Then I woke up Thursday morning feeling renewed. Hmm, I thought. Looked at the calendar, yep, it’s a New Moon! Still a crazy couple of days, but I feel a new sense of hope that it will get better. I don’t think everyone is as aware of moon cycles and spiritual things as some of us, so they just think it’s all random or caused by this or that and they try to fix those things and when they feel better they think they fixed it , not realizing the changing moon cycles were at least partly responsible.

Wait!, you say. I thought this was a Christian blog! It is ! But God made the moon and the moon has strong effects on the earth, so why would it not affect the people God also made? Do I worship the moon or think that I should be very concerned about it, no. I trust that God is more powerful than anything He created. I pray constantly for His help and I feel his presence in my life , especially during crises. God is in charge!  He can even blacken the sun when he wants to make a big point.

The road has been rocky for the past two weeks. Everyone has been passing around a virus which meant that eventually my daughter would catch it and she did. I had to put her on oxygen to help her breathe on Wednesday, but Thursday she was looking much better! All this sickness meant we got very little school work accomplished, but we did work on math and reading. Today my husband feels terrible so I will be taking care of him as well as her.

The other things that have happened have been mentioned I think, unexpected plumbing expenses, car troubles and expenses, no money for Christmas, stress and worry over a depressed husband and son, my own sickness, not being able to get out and run this week, and trying to be ready for a race this weekend with all this on my mind. We also missed Bible Study class yesterday due to the virus. But God is good and I just keep praying and asking my friends to pray. Oh, yeah, after a few nice sunny days, it’s now raining and will be raining during the race unless God answers my prayers to change the weather. I have a pretty good record with God giving me good weather for races, so I try not to complain. My best friend lives in upstate New York and it seems to rain every time she races! I don’t want to live there.

The race will be exciting! Rain or not. There will be some famous elite runners there as well as many sub-elites. Ian Sharman, (UPDATE :Sharman won the 50 miler in around 6 hours in mud!) who until recently held the 100 mile Trail record, Gordon Ainsleigh ( I didn’t see him), the father of the famous Western States 100, some of the Tarahumara runners from Mexico might be there , and many other fast runners  are coming in from around the country to this lil’ ol’ state park in Texas that is mostly known for its’ large alligator population, many small lakes and bird-watching. Many of my friends will be there, some attempting their first 100 mile distance, others running other distances or volunteering or pacing.  This event was recently chosen for the 100 mile Trail Championship race for 2019 which is a big deal for the race director, who is a friend of mine, so congratulations to Robert Goyen of Trail Racing Over Texas (TROT)! https://trailrunner.com/trail-news/usatf-mountain-ultra-trail-council-announces-2019-national-championship-races/ 

 

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Brazos Bend State Park 

I did my packet pickup, errands and weekly grocery shopping yesterday, so today I will be trying to ‘rest’ for my race while I take care of everyone and do my usual cooking and chores. I know most runners do not get to rest much before a marathon and I usually don’t,  so this is not a big deal. But I’m glad I don’t have to go into Houston like I did yesterday! The traffic!  I am just not fond of the city anymore after 15 years of country living. But I have to be thankful that  I did get in and out fairly quickly and with no trouble, not counting the time I had to circle around  for awhile to get in the lane I needed to get on the freeway. I felt a slight urge to hit some of the millions of stores in Houston, but instead, I headed west on I-10, away, away! I stopped at Buc-ees for a soda and ended up doing some Christmas shopping there.

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Every good road trip includes a stop at Buc-ees

 

What is Buc-ees? It’s a gigantic gas station with over 60 gas pumps at this location and a huge carwash, a restaurant (BBQ and sandwiches) and bakery, clean restrooms, a huge convenience store with every imaginable snack and drink item and coffee, AND a huge gift shop! In other words, a Texas-sized gas station. Take a look here . It’s quite impressive! However when I got home I looked at my receipt and found that I had been charged for a sandwich I didn’t buy, which made me a bit upset since that store is not known for it’s bargain prices. I sent them an email which is the only way to contact them. I’ll update if I get a refund. ( Update: I got a refund !)

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Mmm, Beaver Nuggets! (Sugar coated corn snacks)

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Some fun gifts I bought for my sister in Utah who is always positive 🙂

Well, my time is up. Sick husband is trying to cook himself food and it’s not going well. Have a good day my friends!

Deuteronomy 4:15 “Therefore watch yourselves very carefully. Since you saw no form on the day that the Lord spoke to you at Horeb out of the midst of the fire, 16 beware lest you act corruptly by making a carved image for yourselves, in the form of any figure, the likeness of male or female, 17 the likeness of any animal that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged bird that flies in the air, 18 the likeness of anything that creeps on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the water under the earth. 19 And beware lest you raise your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and bow down to them and serve them, things that the Lord your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven.20 But the Lord has taken you and brought you out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt, to be a people of his own inheritance, as you are this day. 

The Life of the Party

Do you like podcasts? I do and I listen to them regularly while running , instead of music. I often get blog ideas from them and that happened today while I  was listening to an East Coast Trail And Ultra Podcast  interview with Alex Ramsey, aka Barefoot Alex.  Alex was described as a person who NEVER says anything negative. I believe this because I met him once at a race and he was super friendly, positive, and happy. Even when the interviewer said something negative or somewhat rude about something, Alex would just laugh and make a joke and not partake in the negativity. This made me wish that I was that kind of person. Who doesn’t love being around super friendly, positive, happy  people? The kind who have witty comebacks, are very humble, but real, people, who don’t drag other people into gossip, negative conversations, politics, or boring subjects.

I then had to stop myself and say, hey, everybody has their own personality and contributes to the world in their own way.  We can’t all be cheerleaders or motivational speakers or the life of the party. Somebody has to do the other jobs and be the ones to laugh at the jokes. I am a teacher. My gift is sharing and explaining information. But I also try to encourage and build up people in my life with that information.  My personality type and gift is not always appreciated  and I could probably improve my skills and I want to do that. I need to learn from teachers who are able to inspire and encourage while they teach. I had a couple of those special teachers in my years of schooling and I still remember them. They didn’t take things too seriously and they were able to be flexible and also not get upset when students acted up or had trouble learning.

Other people, maybe you, might have the gifts I admire. I love smart people who can make funny jokes. I really appreciate someone who makes me laugh hard! Eddie Murphy was one of my favorites in my youth. He could never get away with some of those jokes nowadays.  I also admire blue collar workers and love to see them at work. My husband is a mechanic and basically an engineer as well. He can use all kinds of tools including a lathe and mill. If he needs a special part to fix something , he can MAKE IT! Pretty cool. I have not spent very many years of my life in paid work, so I find the whole work world fairly mysterious and interesting. I especially love entrepreneurs and salespeople, probably because my dad was a salesman. Some other under-rated people are the ones who do so much good in the world and never want or get attention for it, unless Mike Rowe finds out, the charity workers and good-deed doers and people who donate money, time and their brains to make these organizations successful.  That takes a special personality. These people have huge hearts, good organizational skills, and seemingly boundless energy. Yes, I feel bad that I am not like them, too. And let’s not forget the people who are very good at skills like keeping things safe, being  fair, executing justice, enforcing rules, protecting others, risking their own lives for others,  our police officers, firemen and emergency personnel. Not many of us are cut out for those essential jobs , and they may not always be the life of the party, and that’s okay!  I’d rather have the calm, quiet type in an emergency.

Don’t get me wrong, I do try to always be friendly, positive and happy, but it’s not my natural state. I’m more cautious, observant, and analytical. My point is that I need to be okay with myself, and you should be, too. It’s okay to admire others, but don’t ruin your own happiness trying to be someone you’re not. Find your special gift and use it to make your part of the world better.

Happy Sunday !

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My son, left, and my husband, working on a dirt bike motor. 

 

Sweating with the boys at the 7IL Ranch: Habanero 100 Trail Race setup

 

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The 7IL Ranch at the start of the October 2016 Blazing 7s race.

Yesterday I did something I haven’t had time for lately. I volunteered. This is not a big deal for most runners, you know you should and you want to and it’s fun , so a lot of us volunteer at races. But, with the way my month and year have been going, it just hasn’t been possible. I’ll spare my male readers the gory details, but let’s just say that AF has been visiting me VERY often and staying a LONG time and leaving me feeling pretty bad, and guess what , she was with me yesterday. But I had made a commitment and I really, really did not want to back out, so I took multiple protective measures and off I went with determination, prayers and a positive attitude.

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The 7IL is a working cattle ranch with trails for running and horseback riding . They also host an obstacle course race there.

Now this volunteer shift was not a fairly easy one like registration, packet pickup, or working the aid station, which I’ve done before. This was SET UP. I had a vague idea of what that might entail, but I’d never done it. I knew it was a lot of hard physical work. I chose this shift because it was most convenient for my family and also I plan to pace at the race so I need to be available. Well, I busted my  ass yesterday, my arms are sore today, and I feel good about it! I worked with two young men and I tried hard to do my share of everything. There were a few boxes that were too heavy and a few things that were too high for me to reach,  but I helped put up many tents, carry boxes, carry cases of Redbull, etc, etc. The fun part was working as a team, having the boss/ race director, Rob Goyen,  tell us what to do. I’m so used to being the boss of my kids all day, it was a nice change! I hope my work , even though it was voluntary, was satisfactory.

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This is from the Blazing 7s race which is held in October at the same location.

I’ll be out there again on Saturday, this time at an aid station all day, which I hadn’t planned, but an empty volunteer spot came up. Then I’ll sleep a few hours and then go back out and run all night as a pacer with my friend to help him stay awake to finish his 100 miles. This race is really crazy! It’s called the Habanero 100, put on by Trail Racing Over Texas. It’s only a few miles from my house, so how can I not participate as much as I can? More people than ever have signed up this year, and I look forward to helping them do the best they can to survive in the heat. This is TEXAS, the race starts at noon, the temps will be in the upper 90s and the course is a sandy, grassy, hilly, sunny 10k loop in a cattle ranch over and over . It is a very hard race! Good luck to everyone!

The 7IL Ranch website.