Group Efforts

We are all on a team of some sort. It doesn’t have to be a sports team, but it could be. If you have a spouse, significant other, and/or children, you have a family team. Your goals are both personal and team oriented. Not all individuals in families are team players. Once children grow up and leave the nest, they form new teams. And so it’s gone for eons of time.

In life, we have to work with many types of people who differ from ourselves. After a career of living in cubicle world, you develop a heightened awareness of people and, well, our oddities. We all have them. Little habits that eventually can drive us crazy. You know it’s true. In fact, even in families, we may have trouble coping with our annoying habits. Some are nail biters, foot tappers, finger drum soloists, lip lickers, or just have their phone volume up to max every time the view a YouTube video, which is super annoying!

I’ve been away from cubicle world for a number of years, so I don’t know what the cell phone protocol is in the workplace now. Whatever it is, I hope people are aware of the fact a great deal of stress is involved in being residents of cubicle world. Some teams I was on were full of weird chaps. Yes, they were. Many programmers/analysts in the 90s were sci-fi lovers. At that time in my life, life was strange enough, I was going to school and raising my kids. We’d have some interesting discussions. It was before politically correct changed the landscape of the workplace. Many of the men I worked with were polite, respected women, and were great guys. Some weren’t. Since I was raised with brothers, I ignored anything inappropriate.

Where I disliked conversations was when higher management said and acted inappropirately and bragged about it. Crossed boundaries. I didn’t have the guts to report it, or tell him to quit. I should have. If I were in that situation today, I would. At that time, I needed my job and benefits. I thought I’d be fired if I spoke up.

Where I support victims of harassment and worse, I abhor when false accusations are made – against men or against women. It’s not right. On either side of the fence. With the progress made in recognizing and protecting gay people from harassment, I’ve thought at times of the anti-gay sentiment I worked in. In the early 90s, I did confront a guy who was such a chauvinist and homophobic by telling him I had a gay son, and I did not appreciate his comments. He had some quirks, combined with a hot temper. He controlled his wife (you hear everyone’s phone calls in cubicle world), and referred to her as “the wife.” I got tired of hearing it. I asked him what her name was. He told me. I told him his the wife reference was insulting to her. Like she was a possession. He said she is. End of conversation.

Didn’t stay in that guy’s cubicle long. I transferred to a different team. Thank goodness. A boss referred to me as “the WOMAN.” I let that slide because he was an exec, laughing it off, but I knew that meant I was not a team member who had any input. I was grateful to go on disability after my 1995 brush with paralysis. The Babe and I married in 1998 and I had such chronic back pain I had to quit work. It was for the best. With the unrelenting pain, there was no way I could go back to being on call for a team, and still expect to make it to work the next day. My life has been full ever since.

I’ve been a part of many a team since then; volunteering, at Church, Stephen Ministries, and VFW groups. I like belonging, and I’ll no longer be part of any group who lack integrity, value, honesty, and cohesiveness. Life, at this point, is too short to not be a part of something good that is larger than oneself. The Facebook Groups I’m part of are all about creativity; Quilting, Crocheting, Writing, Painting, and my favorite is I Create Daily. I don’t stick around groups that have conflict, arguing, or nastiness. No games. No stress.

I’ll be happy to see those FB posts again, and catch up with all the creatives who are “friends” of mine. I’ll feel part of a team again. I’ll be a gear in the group that helps keep it spinning, not derails it’s fuction. Tomorrow, my new BFF from Apple and I will be on the phone straightening out the Apple ID debachle. I’ve missed my phone. I’ll probably over do it on days, but I hope to keep my momentum going towards my kidlit book, my novel, and my other creative endeavors.

You may want to check what groups you’re part of. Find new ones if you need to. If some members of the group say things you disagree with, learn to ignore. If you get more bad than good from a group, leave. Start your own. Just be courteous, kind, and ignore the troublemakers. Try it. On to new adventures, new teams, new groups. Surround yourself with like minded creatives. It makes all the difference in the world. Your work and creations will thrive in the right environment. Think about it. And I’ll see you tomorrow! Take care out there.

Acceptance

As people living on this earth, we’re never done growing and improving. It doesn’t matter if you’re an addict in recovery or a person simply trying to be a better person. We will never be finished! That is the blessing and the curse of being a person in this imperfect world.

It’s difficult to admit we’re not perfect. But you know what? After you are honest with yourself, it’s quite a load off your mind and soul. Accepting you’re not perfect helps a lot. And God loves us just as we are. He’ll give us every last chance there is, that’s how much he loves us. If nothing gives you goosebumps, that should. We get a lifetime of do-overs. What luck!

As we grow and change, we may or not want what we wanted ten or twenty years ago. That is especially true of things that keep us from achieving what we need to achieve in our lives. I have learned that despite the fact I only ever wanted to be a Mom, there are many, many years beyond being a Grandmother that can yield some awesome things; creations you’ve always dreamed of, getting to do more than you ever thought possible, and learning more than you could imagine.

There is a vitality in learning. In taking risks to do something you’ve never done before. In putting yourself out there for the world to see. Some will love what you do. Some will not. Will that stop you? I think not. As you go along, you have a new community you enter. Other people who love what you do. Others who understand your new found passion. Others who encourage you. It’s grand. Some will not be happy for you. Some will not understand why you want to work so hard when you’re retired. And that’s fine. You remember where you came from. You still love your people. You are not willing to accept the status quo. You want to push your limits, within reason. “Go for it,” I say! Why not?

We’re all born to reach towards love. We all reach towards our needs, in love and in life. Some lessons we learned weren’t universal. We are lovable. We can love. Our ideas aren’t wrong or crazy. Just because you’re different doesn’t mean you’re wrong or crazy. Since I almost always had my own room, I practically lived there while I was growing up. The old Beach Boys song, “In My Room” was one I related to on every level. I drew, designed fashion, wrote plays, and tried to draw. Mom always said, “You should quit trying to draw people. They’re terrible!” Thanks, Mom. I’d like to learn how to someday. My bucket list is long, and has numerous items like learning to paint. Learning to draw. Finish every quilt I’ve ever loved. All creative endeavors. My soul feels so good while I’m writing, learning, sewing, quilting, all the stuff I love to do.

I’m gradually carving more time out for all of this by correcting my bad habits that sabotage me. I’m not scolding myself when I fail. Some days I do. It’s ok. Tomorrow I won’t. Baby steps towards more life in my hours. And being positive. I would have never made it this far if I hadn’t always tried to be positive. So far, it’s worked for me.

On Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, author, nurse, and companion to Mario Puzo, Carol Gino is holding a three day Facebook Challenge about discovering the rest of your soul – and adding a new level of consciousness to your life. I am very interested in this. I believe it will be an asset to me to learn what she has to teach me. Because of certain close calls in life (my son’s drowning, my other son’s ruptured appendix, and things surrounding my dad’s death), I think there is something there, inside of me, that I need to find and release. I believe it should be enlightening. Join us if you’d like. 2 p.m. CDT. Soul Star Academy on FB.

Thanks for reading today. We’ve had three weather changes already today, and it’s only 12:11 p.m. Rain, Sun, Rain while Sunny, and now more sun. Crazy. There’s a closet calling to me. It’s my spot to de-clutter today. Onwards, to better habits, folks! Be kind. Be thoughtful. Be back tomorrow. I know I will. See you then!