The Ultimate Blog Challenge

As if I didn’t already have enough on my plate, I decided to sign up for the 2013 Ultimate Blog Challenge.  I do stuff like this because it keeps me writing, keeps me reading other blogs and I meet a few cool peeps along the way.

Awesome.

I’m not sure if I am going to have a theme this year.  I usually do the A – Z Challenge, and that always has a theme for me.  This time, who knows.

I do know that I plan on having tons of fun, honing my writing skills and stumbling upon lots of cool blogs via the hashtag #blogboost on Twitter and the group on Facebook.

So if you aren’t signed up.. get on it!

It should be a real hoot.

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Keeping It Real

serenity

serenity (Photo credit: dragonflaiii)

So I was watching the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) this morning and there were all these fascinating episodes that dealt with “self.” Like, how we treat the self, how outside events impact the self and so much stuff I went out and bought a book by one of the people Oprah was interviewing.  “The Untethered Soul” by Michael A. Singer.  The book is to liberate us from a contained self-image.

Based solely on the interview, the information I gathered from the show and snippets of the book I scanned, I have hope that this book will break me through my final barrier… me.

I have always tried to keep it real.  I’ve tried to remain grounded in all I do, say or feel along with trying to be there for anyone who crosses my life path. But there are these things, these feelings, that get in the way on a consistent basis.  And when I let my head get the best of me, I am no longer keeping it real per say, but getting sucked into a myopic array of disillusionment which takes me back to that dark room of self-loathing.

Yeah, pretty messed up stuff.  The more messed up part of all this crap is that I project this putrid bile onto other human beings.  Instead of just being in a moment or looking at things for what they are, I tend to read deeper into whatever is going on and then I project my thoughts, insecurities and the like others.

This leads to:

  • self-doubt
  • self-loathing
  • insecurity
  • feeling less than
  • depression
  • self-sabotage
  • resentment

That is a pretty hefty list of awful feelings, ideals and all around yuckiness.

Lately, I have been way up in my head.  This is a tough place for me when I am trying to live a life of peace.  My head is not peaceful.  It is constantly chattering, whispering and telling me rotten things.  I believe these things.  I give my thoughts weight and that is when the horrible list above comes into play.  I used to drink and drug to get rid of these thoughts and feelings.  Drinking and drugging is not an option for me.

This is why I bought the book.  My thoughts (and yours) are so automatic, I never question them.  You’ve heard the saying, “I think, therefore I am.” UGH!!! How awful is that? I certainly do not want to be what I think!  My twelve-step program helps ( a lot!) but lately I just feel like I need an added tool.

As I go through this book (highlighting sentences and paragraphs like I always do) I will be updating my blog with what I have learned and if any of it is making sense.  It made sense on Oprah’s show, therefore, I am sure it will make sense.

Also, I signed up for 21 Day Meditation Challenge.  It is free and looks like a lot of fun.  Check it out!

How do you battle your demons?

That Damn Heart On My Sleeve

Heart on Sleeve!

Heart on Sleeve! (Photo credit: Caro’s Lines)

It’s true.  I am an emotional, loving, caring, forgiving human being who seems to never remember that it is NOT all about me and I should NOT take everything to the life-giving, all loving heart that is in my chest and on my sleeve.

I have a hard time handling any kind of rejection.

You wanna hurt me?  Ignore me.  Pretend I do not matter.  Treat me like one of the rest.  That shit hurts.  It hurts deep.

Maybe I am the “sensitive artist type” or I am just sensitive period.  I don’t know.  What I do know is that I love with all my heart and I just reveal myself (the real me) time and again and I get shit on and it hurts.

How do I be someone else?  How do I turn into this magical, mythical creature that never gets angry, hurt, upset, jealous, resentful or bruised?

This is the question I want answered.

Why do I do this?  Why do I pour my heart into everything?  The risk is always there and I know this.  But I give my heart anyway.  Over and over and over again.

Sometimes I wish I didn’t feel the hurt, the pain, the agony of rejection or dejection.  But then, I remember:

It is good for me to feel these things and sort them out. Because the moment I decide I can no longer handle feeling these feelings is the scary moment I might look to pick up a drink.  After all, not being able to handle my feelings was a huge part in my alcoholism.

So…

  • I journal.
  • I go to a meeting.
  • I talk to my friend, Heather.
  • I pray.
  • I think (this is not good).

The final thing I do is give it to God.  I have so many little papers in my God Box: things I want, things that bother me, people I cannot help.  All kinds of stuff.  I put those little pieces of paper in my God Box and then forget about them.  After I say a prayer and put my written thought in the God Box, I forget about it…

For a little while…

But, me being me with this heart on my sleeve, my head starts to mess with me again.  Sometimes I think wearing my heart on my sleeve is a huge character defect.  However, a lot of people (including my former sponsor) has told me it is an admirable trait.

Hmmmm…

How are you at handling your emotions? 

ROW80 – Accountability

I honestly was not going to hop in on this round of ROW80.  I thought, “gah!  I’m too busy, I’m too tired, I’m too everything not to do this.”

But then I thought about it.  I am really just being too lazy.  I am the kind of person that, when I get in that dark slump of lazy selfishness, NEEDS someone (or something) to push me.

And then I thought about how hard I have worked up until this point.  I was writing/editing every day.  I was posting on my blog 2-3 times a week. I was commenting on other blogs (a lot!) and I was really involved in our little community.

Well, I need to get back there.  And I am getting back there starting today.

Here is my list of this round’s ROW80 Goals:

  • read through my manuscript one more time, looking for any inconsistencies or places where it is lame.
  • read/comment at least 3-5 blogs a day.
  • journal, journal journal.
  • share blog posts via Triberr.
  • Write a Flash Fiction piece each week to post on my blog for Friday.

That’s it for now.  The truth is, I have been so out of my mind the last few months… I really needed to get back into meetings and getting back in touch with people in the program, and I did just that.  It feels good to be back in the rooms and reaching out to others.

I wish everyone the very best on their ROW80 road this round!

International Pimp My Blog Day

International Pimp My Blog Day.  Check her out!

ROW80 Update – ROW80 Overload!

Good day all my ROW80 friends! I hope everyone is having a great April so far… I will be happy when April 17th comes and goes because that means tax season will be over and I can resume life as normal.

I am staying steady with my goals.

A – Z Challenge

I am in on the A – Z Challenge which is a lot of fun writing and reading the other interesting ideas people come up with in terms of Alphabet Posts.

Script Frenzy

I am in on Script Frenzy which is nerve-racking, but I hate losing or admitting failure, so I am keeping with it.  The nerve-racking part was formatting the script, but I have since decided to just write the darn thing and work on the formatting later.

Bound and Broken Editing

I am about half way through.  I changed up a few things and will be looking to find some beta readers in a month or so.  Bound and Broken is a Crime Drama.  So if that be your thang, hit me up, yo.

750words.com

So I was writing on 75owords today and I was like, *ding* I can use 750 words to write up some of my A – Z posts as a rough draft!

Blogging

I have to say.. I stopped The Walking Dead posts until the new season rolls around.  There just isn’t much to talk about until then.  I skipped a Talk About It Tuesday last week because I have so much other stuff going on.  Like I said, April is just hectic with out all the writing.  In light of recent events (and my lack of meetings recently), I am thinking of doing a sort of AA/NA post a week.  I have to map it out first.

A – Z Challenge ~ G is for Gusto

image: globalgraphica.com

gus·to

[guhs-toh]hearty or keen enjoyment, as in eating or drinking, or in action or speech in general: to dance with gusto. Synonyms:  enthusiasm, delight, relish, zest, spirit, fervor.

Ah gimme da gusto!  Ok, bad Italiano attempt there… but, hey… it is Saturday and Saturday is alright for Gusto!

Gusto is something that I have lacked for the last two years of my life.  I write, I work, I eat annnd… I sleep.  I just realized this as I left the gym this evening and came home.

I lack gusto. I lack oomph. Pizzazz!

So what should I do?  What should you do if you are lacking GUSTO?

Go out and find it!  I realized on the way home from the gym tonight that my lack of gusto is my own darn fault.  SO if you are lacking gusto, let’s figure out why!

And if you got lots o’ gusto goin’ on.. don’t be stingy.. share your tips with us. 😀

A – Z Challenge ~ D is for Details

Image: ourmarketingmastery.com

Details.  We notice them whether we realize it or not, when we drive, walk, talk, read and watch a movie.  One of the most important aspects of paying attention to detail is in writing.  Well, dismantling bombs may require quite a bit of attention to detail, but that isn’t my forte.

Writing is my forte, and I confess, I am not a writer that uses an entire page to describe a room.  If it pertains to my story and I need it known (because it propels the story forward) I let it be known.  Otherwise, I leave a lot to the reader’s imagination.  Is this good?  Is it bad?  I don’t know.

I guess that is why I had such a hard time writing my novel for NaNoWriMo.

Details are amazing!  When stumped on a scene or a flash fiction piece, I make sure I pay a little extra attention to people the next time I am out.  Every single one of my characters has a trait or quality from a real live human bean, er, being.

The next time you are out and about, look around the street you drive down or the mall you walk through.  Find someone and really give them a once over.  What are they wearing around their neck?  Does she only have one earring on?  Is his shoelace broken?  Does he smell like cigarettes, cologne or both? Make up a story about a car in the gas station that has a dent in the back-end.  Look closer:  are they teeth marks?

Are there times when you pay attention to detail more than others?

A – Z Challenge ~ C is for Caution

Caution.  It means be careful, warning, danger and other things. But in the midst of life, sometimes caution can be a death sentence that leads to a mundane existence filled with the same boring pork chops and applesauce every Thursday night along with Sunday night bowling.  Hey, bowling is great.  Pork chops are great.  But… wouldn’t Bowling for Pork Chops be even better?

Exactly.

There have been times I have played on the safe side of the fence.  Okay, most of my life (unless I was drunk or high) I played on the safe side of the fence.  I took risks, but they were extremely calculated risks with a high percentage success rate.  I mean, one thing I hate is to fail or be wrong.  So it makes sense that caution was something I exercised often.

Caution can be a death sentence.  It can be that thing that suffocates you.  You’ll wake up in thirty years, roll out of bed and look in the mirror and ask yourself, “why?” And you’ll pepper your soul with “shoulda, woulda, coulda’s.”

If we don’t take chances, we don’t know what can happen!  Sure, we’ll always know that our food will taste good because we order the same thing, or that we’ll make it to work on time because we always take the same route (boring!). We can always be sure we’ll be entertained because we watch that movie we love every time.

Calculated risks are a way to step out of our comfort zone and grow as an individual.  Do you remember the last time you took a calculated risk?  Maybe you took a deep breath and asked for a raise (which I did last week – it paid off!) or maybe you decided to wear a different color sweater than that gray one you always wear.

Whatever it is, step outside your comfort zone and take a calculated risk.  You will grow in ways you won’t begin to believe.

Talk About It Tuesday – The Most Interesting Women in the World

Image: Guiness Book of Records

Welcome to another great edition of Talk About It Tuesday! Last week we discussed Spiders, Butt Cancer & Ouija Boards. Yep, I seriously cannot make that up.

This week is great because I found an article guaranteed to inspire you.  It will not only inspire you, but it will also inspire that kid inside of you from way back when that decided to settle on the mundane of the expected. What do you think you’ll be doing when you are 75 years old? I’ll wait whilst you ponder the thought.  Okay, now how about when you are 101 years old?

Mary Allen Hardison, who hails from Ogden, Utah, is officially the “Oldest Female to Paraglide Tandem.”  She took up paragliding because she did not want to be shown up by her 75-year-old son!  Like, wowzah.  Who is this chic?

Mary loves being surrounded by her family that runs four generations strong.  When she isn’t wowing the world with paragliding feats, she knits caps for sick children and premature babies.  Oh, wait, that isn’t enough for her to be in the running with Mother Teresa in the “greatest woman in the world” category…  she crochets bandages for leopards in India.  That’s got to be enough to make you say “aww!” and gush all over the place.  Somewhere in India, there are leopards darting around with crocheted bandages made by a paragliding senior citizen from Utah.

In Dale City, Va, 6-year-old Lori Anne Madison, outshined a reporter after winning the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee.  Can you imagine going head to head with a six-year-old girl in a Spelling Challenge and having your butt handed to you? This little girl beat out 21 other kids (her age and older) to compete in this challenge.  Of course, the adult (the reporter) probably thought he had her beat hands down.  I mean, he is a reporter and he is a lot older than the little girl aannnnd he has way more schooling!

Hey! I'm an Okapi!

Well, Lori Anne schooled the reporter when she spelled the word “okapi” (yeah, I had to look it up.  I thought it was part zebra, part hyena, part stripper, but it’s not – and now I want one!).  The reporter was given the word “tourniquet” and failed miserably.  In the omniscient age of computers, iPads, smartphones, word games, and whatever the hell else kids use to get smarter than smart, I am not surprised.  I used to think I was a hot diggity dog when I was a wee lass because my Gram bought me a phonics book at Woolworth’s every weekend (three grades higher than the grade I was in)!  I was such. A. NERD.

I am sure a lot of my blogger friends can relate to this?  Come on, I can’t be the only word geek up in here!

And on a Dumb Ass note (cause we got to have one of those), a Denver woman got busted after bragging about how to get out of jury duty.  Susan Cole, 57 (aka dumb ass) decided it would  be a phenomenal idea to go on a radio show and discuss her fool-proof plan for beating jury duty. She obeyed the summons, and showed up in a “disheveled manner” to make others think she was a nut job and clearly was not able to handle jury duty.  And she’d have gotten away with it if she wasn’t such a dumb ass!

Thanks for joining me for another Talk About It Tuesday.  Enjoy the rest of your week!  And remember – it can be a good thing to read the dictionary.

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