Woot-woot! Happy Friday!

happy-dance-stickmanWow, am I glad it’s Friday. It’s been a “heavy” week.

I’m so looking forward to the weekend.

But I’m also looking forward to today. Things are always quiet at the office on Fridays, and I can focus on getting things done.

Thinking.

Concentrating.

Focus.

It’s a real treat.

So, off I go!

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Well, this is nice…

laptop-newI’ve now entered the 21st century with my laptop. I’ve been running Windows XP since I left Windows 3.1 – so that should give you an idea how long it’s been. I have probably been using XP since the late 1990s, and it’s  been getting progressively worse, over time.

First, my old laptop was slow. I mean SLOW. And getting slower. It was partly because the hardware was old, partly because all the new patches and updates to my browsers, software, and different running parts of my system were putting a lot of strain on the system resources. It’s like my computer was having short-term working memory issues – just like me.

And it wasn’t fun.

Eventually, it just got prohibitive. There’s only so much blocking I can handle. Browsers throwing errors all the time, having to wait for updates, everything running slower… slower… slower… And I couldn’t even get a lot of the programs I need to run, these days. These are tools I need to keep my skills up, so I can continue to earn a good living. If I don’t keep my skills up, I am at a big disadvantage. Plus, there are some very cool tools out there, and if I don’t keep up, I’m not only hurting my chances to earn a good living, but I’m also missing out on some pretty cool stuff.

And it’s the cool stuff that keeps me going.

So, I broke down and got myself a new computer — for a fraction of what it normally costs. A new one goes for $1600, but I got mine for $250. And it has a hard drive that’s twice the size of a the top of the line new ones. That’s important, because I do a lot of work with big chunks of data and information, so I need to have enough “overhead” without running out of room.

So, I spent last night setting up my new laptop. I got it all set up with the stuff I need, and I’m adding more as I go. I can now install the apps I couldn’t even come close to, before. Plus, I can get new ones that I never knew about. I now have an email program that pulls in messages from a number of different accounts and lets me keep up on my activity. That’s been a problem for years, because I would need to login to different email addresses, and sometimes I wouldn’t do that for weeks. So, I missed out on important family messages, as well as volunteer opportunities. And I would have to scramble to catch up.

That doesn’t need to happen, anymore.

Plus, I now have a spacebar that doesn’t flake out on me. My old computer had a wonky spacebar that I had to keep punching, to get it to work. I had to press it at exactly the right place, for it to work, and that screwed up my hands, because it was an unnatural position for my thumbs to be in.

Old habits die hard. And when they do, they sometimes screw up your hands.

So, now with my enormous hard drive, and a 21st century operating system, it’s like a whole new day. The sun is rising, and it’s looking to be a gorgeous day. I am keeping my old laptop for traveling, for those times when I just need a way to get online. But this new one… well, it’s pretty sweet. And that makes me incredibly happy.

New day. New ways.

Onward.

Good, better… even better

utah-mountainHow amazing is this – I have a four-day weekend. And this is following a week when I worked the first two days at home.

That made all the difference. Not having to commute, not having to deal with the office, not having to drown out the noise around me and always be on my toes, because someone might stop by my cubicle… it was pretty sweet. And I’m feeling pretty great.

True, I haven’t been sleeping as much as I should. I’ve actually been a bit dizzy and feeling nauseous for the past few days. I’ve been waking up early, really bothered about things, unable to “turn my head off”. And I have been having some trouble getting myself to bed at a decent hour.

At least I’ve got today and Monday to take a nap in the afternoon. That’s a plus. Tomorrow, my spouse and I are taking the day to go to our favorite vacation spot — just for a day trip — to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Nice.

So, I’m in a pretty good spot. And after the nap I’m going to take shortly, I expect I’ll be even better.

Time for something different…

Different worlds in different minds

It’s pretty amazing when I look around me, these days. On one hand, I know people who are intently focused on the terrible things that are happening in the world. On the other hand, I have friends who flatly refuse to engage in any kind of discussion unless it’s positive and uplifting. I know people who are actively protesting against things going on in the world, and I know people who are fighting with all their might to hang onto the way things are and have “always” been.

To look at each of these groups of people, you’d think the world was in a completely different state — that they’re living in a bunch of entirely different and separate planets.

Yet, we’re all here. That’s the one thing they all have in common. Oh, one other thing – they are all pretty much convinced that their way is the ONLY way to look at things.

Personally, I could use a change. These different worlds certainly exist, but they’re not the only worlds that are available to us. And we’re free to shift in and out of our perceptions at will.

We can literally make (and re-make the world in any way we choose).

So, that’s where I’m taking myself today… and tomorrow, too. All this stuff going on at work… what-ever. All the stuff going on in the world… there’s something more to it than meets the eye, and who am I to judge, really. Certainly, I don’t want to stand by while people suffer needlessly, but I also need to be smart about how thin I spread myself, and see where I can make a real difference, and where I’d just be pissing in the wind.

The places where I can make a difference, are in my personal relationships with people, my personal relationships with myself. Doing no intentional harm to others, and being considerate to others, even when they are inconsiderate to me.

Giving people the benefit of the doubt. Approaching people with generosity and compassion, even when they really do seem to be assholes and either not know or give a damn about how they are behaving in the world.

If I stay stuck in my resentments and accusatory nature, if I take up permanent residence surrounded by my criticisms and issues, then whom does that help? My own version of how things are may be very different indeed from the fact of the matter, so it’s best I take my own rantings with a grain of salt. And not get too worked up over them. Tempests in teacups never got anyone anywhere.

Yeah, it’s time for something different. Something better. What can I do today that will get me into a better space and help me live my life, instead of fight it all the way?

Hmmm… let’s see…