Tuesday, August 25, 2009

It's all in the Attitude


Everyone's got one. Good, bad, sarcastic, irritating, cranky, pissy, negative, positive... pick an adjective, any adjective... they're all covered. The problem is that the negative ones seem to out-weigh the positive ones in our society today. Stand in any line and wait for service anywhere and you'll see it plain as the nose on your face. Somebody (and I'm not saying it's you) is complaining about how long the line is, someone's upset about how slow it's moving, someone else is irritated at something else, and on and on....

It's contageous, actually. Misery loves company and it's an ice-breaker among strangers in a very long, and otherwise uncomfortably silent, line. It's the same on the other side of the counter too. The poor workers get abused all day long by people, when they're just there to get a very small paycheck. It's not their fault that the company didn't staff them properly in the first place and they just need to vent, so they complain to each other, the next person in line hears it and then the attitude spreads even more.

But, believe it or not, a positive attitude can be contageous as well... it's just harder to keep up for some reason. The old saying "The squeeky wheel gets the oil" stands true and it also helps us to correct what's going wrong in business. If we don't know what we're doing wrong, how can we expect improve? But how can we continue to grow in the right direction if no one tells us we're doing right? Kudos are just as important and I think people forget to give them most of the time. But if someone is doing really well in an area, don't you think it would be helpful to let them know, "hey, keep up the good work!" so they don't change what they're doing to something that's not as good? If they don't get any praise, they may think they're not doing anything right.

Back to the positives... The other day, I was in a very slow moving line at McDonalds. Apparently it had been that way for a while... and when I finally made it to the window to pay, the young woman was smiling, very energetic and she said, with humor and emphasis, "Welcome to the first window! Not many people make it this far." We both laughed, I gave her my money, she gave me my change and said, "Thank you, good luck!" I thanked her and laughing, I drove to the next window to get my food. Unfortunately the next woman was not in the same mood. The second woman was very down, was very upset at work and being so short-handed. I tried to joke with her and say at least she had good job security, but she just complained more, so I said, "Well, at least you have a job." took my food and drove off. Fortunately, the first woman's attitude was still with me and I was still giggling over her witicism and it kept me in a pretty good mood for the rest of the day.

But why does a bad mood spread quicker than a good mood? I'll walk into work in a pleasant mood, most everyone else will be in a decent mood as well... then one person... one bad apple, as they say... spoils the bunch. Why is it? Studies show it, or so I've heard, but what is it about that negative energy that's so powerful that the other surrounding positive energy gets morphed... transformed... warped into the negative? Why can't the happy people snuf out the negative person's negative energy and turn them around? "Hey why so mad? why so sad? why so glum? what's so wrong, so upsetting? etc... here, let us help you!"

AH HA! Eureka!

Maybe that's the key! I think that could be what's wrong... why the negative spreads quicker... because the positive people stay quiet... they don't help... they're ashamed of being happy... or don't want to "get involved"... don't want to bring attention to themselves and bring the wrath of the upset person down upon themselves. So, everyone stays quiet, and the guilt allows the misery to take over. Bingo! The Devil's gotcha!

So, now what do you do? Have a meeting at work? Decide to be strong on your own? Pray for strength every day? Talk to the other positive people in your close network of coworker/friends? Well, why not all of the above? One step at a time.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Distraction, Digression, Deviation, Disruption...

Distractions can be bad... or they can be good... depends upon your outlook. I got onto my laptop to work on my assignment for school (quite a large assignment that will take me a few hours to do) and got distracted as I was doing research. I started looking up my subjects and other things caught my eye and I started surfing the web... more and more, I got further away from my subject... I now have about twenty-eight tabs open in my window, I don't even see the one for my class anymore because it was the first one opened.


Total Disruption of my goal... it's now dinner time, I haven't eaten all day and my schoolwork still isn't done! And now I'm here on my blog talking about it! But I had a thought and just needed to voice it. Hence why I started this blog in the first place, but I digress..... (pun intended)

Frosty Morning WebImage by foxypar4 via Flickr

So, was it a bad thing that I got distracted?

Well, as I traveled accross the internet's intricately weaved web,

Server CablingImage by A3sthetix via Flickr

I came across a really interesting picture on diviantArt.com where one of the Diviant's took an HDR photo.

It was beautiful! Morbid... yes, but beautiful.


But WTF is HDR??

So, I surfed some more and found a tutorial on how to fake an HDR photo, where it was explained what an HDR photo actually is. It's when you take multiple photos of the same subject (and in her case, this was a little girl... imagine a little girl holding completely still for this!) and superimposing them on top of each other to get an impossibly high definition photo. It's actually quite amazing and stunning, when done properly.


So, I began practicing on some of my own photography.

Still Distracted!

I was utterly amazed at what I was able to do. I had some noteworthy photos of my own that I took of some "nature" a while back. A large snail was one of them and I was very happy with the original photo. It came out very nice and the color was bright, but apparently, I was wrong. After applying his technique, the details came out so strongly... so vibrantly... I was totally blown away!

Another photo, a potrait, was taken for the purposes of work... it came out amazingly good and I will be showing my boss on Monday. He was already impressed with my photography skills. Wait 'til he sees what I can do now!

In the meantime, I still haven't finished my schoolwork... it's now 6pm... I still haven't eaten anything at all today... and all I've accomplished today is (a load of laundry and some dishes when first woke up at 8:30am this morning and...) surfing the web.

So... Was the distraction good or bad?

I leave it to you to decide.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Peace, Harmony & Balance (part one)

It's amazing to me, how much more I notice around me, the more peaceful I feel. I've recently had some amazing changes in my life and have found a sense of calm that seems to surround me more often than not. I don't seem to get as frazzled during the day at work as I used to... I don't get as stressed out as I used to... I don't worry quite as much... etc.

I stopped smoking, stopped drinking coffee, don't drink or do drugs, and, yes, I was recently baptized, so I "found religion" if you want to put it that way. I've always been a christian, but I've just made more of an effort than I had been and it seems to have made quite an impact on things.

I still struggle with bills and time management... I'm still overworked and haven't had a raise in who-knows-how-long.... but I trust that God will take care of everything. Now, I've always trusted that He would take care of everything... and He always has... but I've always worried about everything until He came through for me too... and was exhausted with the worry. I don't feel all that worry as much. Oh, maybe a moment or two, but it goes away and I move on to what needs to be done.

But back to what I was initially talking about. I've always been one for noticing nature and things that would normally go unnoticed by the average Joe Schmoe on the street. But lately, I seem to be noticing a LOT more. Things seem to be falling into place and making sense more for me in my life and in my understanding of things around me, what I read, what I learn, what I hear, etc.

Is it because I'm more at peace? More in harmony with the world and with myself? With God? All of the above? I'm leaning toward the later, but whatever the answer is, I'm beginning to like it!