Category Archives: Other Reading

A spot for all the articles about other topics I’ve written through the years.

The Folded Ear and OCD

It may seem an odd lead-in but it’s appropriate and if you read along I think you’ll understand why. The other night after turning off my iPad (I’d been reading for a bit), I laid down to go to sleep. I tend to start off on one side or the other and this particular night it was on my left side. As I put my head down on the pillow, my ear folded over and was uncomfortable. It wasn’t painful in any way, just not the way it was most comfortable for me to go to sleep. I adjusted my position but it was still folded. I tried adjusting again. It was still folded. Finally I had to move the pillow, adjust my position and try again, and finally got things where they needed to be for my comfort and ability to relax. As I lay there waiting for sleep to come, I realized the amount of time and energy I had spent making sure just that one facet of my comfort as proper before I even thought about getting the rest of me into a comfortable sleeping position. It made me wonder how many other things I do, day to day, that take up time and seem vital but also could be viewed as relatively trivial. What I realized was that such moments exist in every day throughout our life. Continue reading

Is There a Difference Between Insulting and Offensive?

Not that long ago I had an experience that made me think about the difference between “being insulted” and “being offended.” In today’s society where it seems like there is always someone offended by something, no matter how innocuous or harmless the “something” might be, it’s almost become fashionable to be offended. What’s worse, the idea that being offended seems to mean someone owes you something in reparation for having caused that feeling.  Here we get to where people who have been “triggered” feel they are owed something (and that “something” can be truly ridiculous) simply because someone did something that was offensive to them. If you have this conversation long enough, terms like “snowflake” and “pansy” start getting thrown around and then we’ve moved from the realm of offensive to the realm of insulting. They are far from the same thing but in today’s world the difference has been all but lost. Continue reading

Who Defines You?

“What follows ‘I am’ is far more important than what follows ‘You are’.”  I put that quote up on Facebook a while back and got a LOT of traction with it. It seems so simple a concept – what you think and say about yourself matters more than what others think and say about you. Right? There shouldn’t be any argument about that. But in reality, we spend a lot of time thinking and worrying about how others perceive us; what they think of us; how they view us; what our reputation is and so on. I’m as guilty as the rest. And then something will happen, or I’ll ready something or hear something… and it’ll help to ground me. It will remind me: what I think of me is more important than what someone else thinks of me. Continue reading

What Gifts Do You Give?

Keep in mind that it’s Christmas Eve as I type this…

This morning as I drank my coffee, sitting at the dining room table, I looked into the family room at our Christmas tree and the gifts stacked under it. The idea of gift giving and what kinds of gifts we give began to churn through my barely caffeinated mind. The thoughts expanded to include the time of year, the pending New Year, resolutions people make and more.  Soon I realized I was thinking about the gifts that we should be giving… to others as well as to ourselves. The most interesting thing, I think, is that not a single one of them can be wrapped. Continue reading

Throw Out 2018’s Trash

Welcome to the end of another year (or close to it). As we approach the New Year, lots of people are focused on the resolutions and changes they want to make. Folks think about what they are unhappy with or set new goals. It’s a great time of year for new beginnings (although ANY time of year is a great time for a new beginning). That recognized, how many of us take a look at why we want to change what we want to change and take the necessary steps to remove some of the negativity from our day and our lives? Continue reading

Be Your Own Great Author

I have heard so many jokes about why you shouldn’t piss off an author. Everything from, “because they’ll write you into one of their books and then kill you off in some unique and interesting way,” to, “you just never know what their imagination will produce.” I always found it rather humorous that people had so much faith in my ability to be vindictive or seek revenge through my writing. But the ultimate irony is that those same people never seem to realize: they are the author of their own story and have far more power over that than I ever would writing them into mine. Continue reading

Life Is THE Final Exam

Do you remember… that kid in school that always wanted to sit next to you so he could copy your paper? Or your answers on a test? Were you that kid? Do you remember the guy you worked with who seemed to always copy your moves or changes or growth… whatever he saw you doing that he thought might benefit him if he did it too? Do you remember the neighbor you had that seemed to buy a new car every time you did? Or he only mowed his lawn the afternoon of the day you did yours in the morning? We all remember one or more of those folks. They are those who watch how we live life and, seeing how well we’re doing, they follow along, copying our moves, tracking our changes and thinking that if they just do the same, then they can do as well. Little do they realize: Not only are we not living the same life, but we’re not even in the same reality – because reality is as individual as we are. Let me explain that. Continue reading

Do You Artificially Shackle Yourself?

As I think a great many people do nearly every day now, I was surfing through some social media posts and I came across this image. Courtesy of @addicted2success, the image shows Superman in handcuffs and accompanied by four soldiers in body armor, etc. It’s an image from the movie “Man of Steel.”  The phrase on it is what caught my attention: How it feels when you’re stuck in your day job and you know your true potential. Continue reading

Don’t Let Your Past Shackle You

In the contemporary world there seem to be a host of beliefs, accepted as unavoidable fact, based on assumptions about the inevitable results of past events. The examples I would give are 1) Every combat veteran will have or does have PTSD and 2) If you have a family history of clinical depression then it’s inevitable that you have or will have it too.  Such beliefs… assumptions really… are not only far from accurate but, if believed, can be unnecessarily and avoidably debilitating. Let me explain. Continue reading

Expansive Outlooks

One really spectacular benefit of social media is that it allows you to follow those you choose, ignore those you want to and share news or commentary on your day as you see fit. There are a great many people who use it purely for trivia or entertainment. There are many companies that use it to pimp their product. There are also a host of people who use it to regularly share good news, positive messages and (hopefully) inspirational commentary. Finding THOSE people wasn’t as easy thirty or forty years ago and, in that way, social media can benefit everyone on a daily basis. That said, the benefit only exists if YOU seek out and follow the folks who share such positive messages. Here are a few other thoughts to go along with what you might find if you do. Continue reading