While I cannot decide, I can nevertheless assess

Pertaining to my last post, I have been taking steps to see the feasibility of a short trip home to see my mom. I really want to see her and I think it would also increase her morale. I talked to my boss and got a compassionate response, I worked hard to finish urgent work matters, and arranged for a covid test that may be needed to board the plane. I have a list of things to do before I leave and things to pack with me.

I am ready to purchase my ticket.

Goodness knows starting to take these steps was a hard one. I know from my anxiety past that making a decision that can change the life for ever is hard and sometimes paralyzing as well. I was more functional as I took one step for the trip. I cannot explain it, but I think I was just too overwhelmed by all the things I must do for leaving Canada and entering my home country, and then coming back. Damn pandemic…….

Anyways, I talked to my siblings today and while they recognize my wish to see my mom, they also recognize that it could be of little help. I have been contemplating about this – my thinking shifted after this.

What is best for my mom?

When I think about this, my thoughts get clearer. It is not about me, but my mom and my siblings who are caring for my mom now. What is good for them? Is my wish to see my mom more important than my mom’s wellness and treatment?

Certainly not. We may be looking for a short disease or a long one. We may lose her soon, or she may recover. I may regret not seeing her in the first case. But, what if instead of seeing her I focus on what is best for her?

See, I think what is good for her is getting the best medical care possible and comfortable life. My siblings will be burnt out soon, so their comfort is also important. I can spend a week traveling, or I can use the efforts and energy (and funds) it has been taking to make a decision and have the trip to their benefits.

Evey minute is a new opportunity to realize and feel. I think now that the most logical thing is to think about their wellness (but not my emotions). While I like this rational thinking, I know from my past experience that tomorrow, I may feel differently, and may want to go again. So one day at a time…. If this is the right decision, then, it will be stable over days. We shall see, my friends.

I feel like a parent making the right decision, not the emotional one, for their kids while they are growing. I do not have kids, but I think this is what it is.

when the two opposite roads cross

There are something in life that put you in quite conflicted position. In order to move on, one road should be chosen over the other, but what happens when both roads are true to your role? How do you choose?

For instance, leadership versus democratic decisions in cases when there are critical decisions to be made while representing others, on their behalf? Do you do what your leadership position requires and decide yourself based on the perimeters/responsibilities of your position, or do you consult and consider the wishes/opinions of the groups you are representing? Even more challenging is; in the latter case, how do you proceed when their wishes do not align with your position’s values?

Let me give an example (while not a good one…): Let’s assume you are, say, a school’s principal and you are requested by the Ministry to stop providing lunch boxes to the students in need for free and rather ask them to help with the chores around the school an hour/day to qualify for the free lunch.

You as the principal feel that the free lunch is important to provide to the students who cannot afford it; it is a matter of equity, a matter of caring for the students and their wellness regardless of their economic background, and making sure that they have access to the basic needs and means to excel at school. You think that imposing such a system will disadvantage many of the otherwise bright students and are planning to make a case to Ministry and object to the new plan.

You ask the students (and parents) and a significant portion agrees to Minister’s plan considering the financial crisis the country/school is going through. They feel that they/their kids don’t deserve to have free lunch while their peers pay for their own. And the majority of those parents whose kids pay for lunch agree to this.

Yet, another but smaller portion states that they do need the free lunch as they cannot otherwise afford lunch, and cannot possibly let their kids work an hour/day continuously while the kids also attend to their classes, do part-time jobs, or take care of family obligations. A small portion of the parents whose kids pay for their lunches also supports this.

What do you do as the principal?

Stand by your overall moral compass and make the objection to the Ministry?

or

Render a decision based on the majority group and say to Ministry that the new plan will be implemented?

Let me know what you think!

 

all the good things – check

  • eating carrots and an apple at the office – check
  • not being stressed much – check
  • working nice and easy – check
  • advising three of my team members about their performances – check
  • having the energy to work and keep going – check
  • prioritizing comfort – check
  • saying no to an extra responsibility – check
  • deciding not to attend to a social I am insisted to attend – check
  • finishing up some great projects and opening time for new projects – check
  • aiming to re-prioritize my well being and simple/frugal life – check
  • planning to visit some thrift stores tomorrow – check
  • flossing my teeth – check
  • feeling good about a new team member’s performance – check
  • being vocal about an extra work we are imposed to by the administration – check
  • drinking kefir – check
  • getting a large piece of home-made cake by a colleague and enjoying it with coffee in the morning – check

 

#1 topic for reflection during holidays

I need to protect my time better at the office and let others do their work. Not me. I repeat, I should not be doing others work.

Period.

Since last July I have done well preserving my energy to mostly my own work. That costed me my 5 weeks of annual leave being spent at home working hard to do my own work. What a ridiculous situation… I still do not know whether I should be laughing or crying over this.

On the positive side, however, it is good that I have realized this and prioritized my work and performance over other colleagues’.

During the holidays you know I like to reflect to improve things in my life. This will be area #1 to further improve.

More to come.

Wednesday morning musings

I got up very early this morning, partly because it was cold. I am glad I have done this, though, considering how peaceful, stress-free, and enjoyable the morning is.

I have been feeling quite well since yesterday evening; a big work is almost done and it feels good.

I have been on and off on work staycation in the last 6 weeks. It has been stressful to do all the work that dragged me down during this time and I was hurt along the way and exhausted, but now things are getting and looking better.

I still have lots of stuff to do but I have a list that shows which works are done in the last 6 weeks and I am glad that I went thru this time; lots of work is done! In my profession 6 weeks is a short time, and all the things I have done are great things. It was a great decision to do this this year. I am very satisfied with my decision and performance.

At what cost, you may ask? And you are right, stress and exhaustion are not worth it within the big picture of life. But I know if I had not done what I had done, things would have been worse for me and I would be looking for a much longer period of agonizing time to finish everything. Finding this positivity and being satisfied with everything are priceless. And feeling well is above all of these; I am very grateful.

This week is the last time that I am able to take vacation time off this year. That means until the holidays in December I will have occasional flexibility to work from home. I should be okay with this, but somehow reacting to it. It tells me that I enjoyed or benefited from working at home. Another positive thing  to be grateful for!

On my personal life side, this intense work period was also good; I socialized a couple of times and hosted friends at home. More importantly, I broke my routine, even though I longed for my routine life during the last 6 hectic weeks. Life is interesting. Everything has its own proper time I guess…

I have great plans for today! I will complete some more tasks that have been dragging me down. I am looking forward to finishing them and adding them to my tasks-done-list! What a treasure 🙂

I hope you all will have a gorgeous day filled with positivity, satisfaction, great opportunities and solutions 🙂

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joy journal – August 14, 2017

I most need to write this journal today; nothing seems to go right and I feel some strange type of being over-whelmed. 

1. I am grateful for not losing my sanity yet, despite all the turbulence, issues, and decisions made. All work-related.

2. I am grateful for not resigning.

3. I am grateful for deciding again and again not to resign. Not without finding a job to replace what I already have. Some things are really going unkind and downhill. But no matter what, I cannot resign and leave. It is a good feeling to be able to leave everything behind, but this would not be a wise thing to do; there is me and other people who are dependent on me having a stable life and work. It is easy to quit but not easy to find a job that will satisfy me. Can I change myself? The way I think? The way I cannot handle things? What will the future bring to me? What am I doing right and what am I doing wrong? 

4. I am grateful for sitting down and listening to a relaxing music. What the days will bring, I must take it. I just wished I did not have to find myself in these situations. But then what can I do? In all cases I try to be fair and just and do the right thing. Sometimes there are no good thing and sometimes there is too much pressure. I bend under this much of a pressure. I just hope not to bend more or unnecessarily.

5. I am grateful for one of our work being assessed favorably. I got the news in the morning. Our efforts are not completed yet, but at least this is a good sign. I hope the final decision will be favorable or at least manageable so that I can feel better.

6. I am grateful for hearing from an ex-trainee of mine who had worked with me something like 5 years ago. Hearing good memories and how their time under my supervision changed and improved their skills is always a delight 🙂

7. I am grateful for taking the bus in the morning and walking in the afternoon.

8. I am grateful for the coffee I have had at the office.

9. I am grateful for the internet connection and my computer that allow me to work and enjoy my time at home.

10. I am grateful for logically analyzing the difficult time I am going thru and realizing that this is a learning opportunity and it will help me with other experiences in the future.

11. I am grateful for not having anxiety or panic attacks, and keeping my cool.

12. I am grateful for slowing down this evening. Tomorrow is another day. This is a period of time that is supposed to happen.

13. I am grateful for breathing and having a healthy body.

14. I am grateful for trying.

15. I am grateful for having loved ones.

16. I am grateful for hearing bad news from others and realizing I am not in such a bad situation. This may sound selfish, but realizing that there are bigger problems in life brings me back to reality and big picture; I must keep my sanity and well being so that I can help others.

17. I am grateful for my blog for letting me vent my frustrations and confusions, interact with others, and express myself.

why do we need to feel good?

At one point in my life, many years ago, I was feeling really bad. As a result I turned into books to understand these feelings, their causes, and how to better deal with the thoughts and emotions as a result.

One thing that misses usually from my overall look at life is trust; trust that things will turn out just okay. Trust that I will be able to handle things well. I now am somehow better in this area if I can remind myself.

My other big habit is to not let go of things, plans, wishes, or wants easily. I believe that they take quite a time and effort to come up with, organize, and execute. These, if not followed with success, eventually it leads to frustration and self-doubt. That hurts and amplifies the the first trust issue; trusting that I will be able to handle things well. This being said, not being an easy dumper is also good sometime, as many things in life require more than mere luck and rather lots of efforts and patience. I have good examples of relatively big success came by not quitting and constantly working towards the aim.

The third would be to have a sharp focus. This is great when there is a task at hand, but not great while dealing with life issues, which are often more complex and repeating in nature. Seeing the big picture, my own and the issue’s place within everything life offers can be quite illuminating; after all what is the big deal as long as we are safe, sound, alive, and able?

I once was silly enough to complain to one of my friends about my own itsy bitsy issues a few months after she has lost her dad. I apologized when I realized what I was being so selfish and insensitive to my friend. She did something amazing and gave a piece of wisdom; there was no pain little or big enough; pain is pain and it fills us almost immediately; fast and expandable. I love this definition, which is so true. But I still want to get out of the room of the pain and see the other things in life. This change in the perspective is healthy, promotes positivity, and eventually calms me.

if there is another thing that calms me is to surrounder to pain. I was not able to understand the meaning of this for years, but one day it just came; I was struggling to decide on something critical, very, critical, and after a long and painful internal fight, my shoulders just dropped. Decision was made by my body. I had failed to make the decision I so long wanted to make. But I could not take it anymore. Fight was over. Pain was pain, but less than the pain my internal fight created. Failed to make the best decision? Yes. Succeeded in surviving my turmoil? Yes. Life can be this messy sometimes.

We have so many examples of hardship in our lives. So many mistakes and resentful memories, actions, words, and behaviors.

What is the solution?

Keep going?

or

Forget these or forgive ourselves? 

 

Sunday morning musings

It is a great day with the freedom to do nothing and everything 🙂

I used this sentence first yesterday and I kinda liked it – so please ignore it if it bothers you. It just reminds me my own freedom. For a control freak and someone like myself who has a lot of things on her to-do-list, that is a great feeling:)

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I am drinking the first cups of my morning coffee and looking ahead the day:  I have a bean meal to cook (started already); a sourdough loaf to bake (proving right now); a yard to dig and fix somehow; loved ones to speak to; and mentally work on the problem of “what is best for my future self“:

 

1) is it staying at my current job and job environment, and aiming to change my mind set so that I can feel good about myself no matter how negative or problematic the work is?

Can I really relax, lower my expectations from myself, adapt a new attitude, care less, and become more self-confident and just make things happen – if they can happen? 

Not sure, but I sure can try….I am quite aware that my self-confidence is quite low. This is mostly because of myself and the expectations I have from myself. Certainly, it does not help when you self-critique yourself all the time…. Please do not do that, friends; it is good to be aware of yourself, but please be not rigid in your thinking about yourself and others. You change; people change. I too can change. I just do not know how to handle that…

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2) is it taking the risk or opportunity (depends on where you are looking from), and looking for jobs aggressively?

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Assuming that I find a new job that I am content with; 

Am I ready to make this change mentally and physically? Yes, I am. I have done this before – I can do it gain.

Can I move to another city? Yes I can – I have done this many times in the past. packing and getting rid of stuff is a head ache, but it happens eventually. The worst thing would be to ask a couple of friends or contract persons to rent a truck and deliver the stuff to a donation centre.

Can I sell my house? hey, yes I guess so. Also, keeping it and renting is another option, is it not?

Can I leave my team at work? That is gonna be tough….. They trust me that I look after them and advance their work and careers. They trusted me and relocated here….. So it is really tough. I am kind of thinking that we can find better jobs for them; at least we can try. And if not, look for alternative ways. I am sure it is gonna be just fine….

Can I leave my position, salary, benefits, office? Yes, if I can get a comparable one somewhere else.

Will I change? the way I look at my work, performance, and my expectations from myself; will I find myself in a similar situation in the new job too?  This is even a tougher situation for me…… I am not confident that I can be fully happy with my new job, either. I feel like I may end up feeling a similar way; lack of self-esteem may take over again. what will I do then? Start looking for another job? How will it affect me now that I am middle aged?

How will it feel to start a new chapter in my life? Energizing and exciting! It will be great to get rid of the garbage off my shoulders and put my chin up with positivity, fresh air, and hope!

But, if I do not make this change, do I have a chance to change? Do I have to get a new job for these:

  • to have a better look at life 
  • to have better interests and better value to my work?
  • to make positive changes for myself and others
  • to feel good about myself

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And, most importantly; what is it that I really want? To change myself or to change my work?

Is it about changing what I see or how I see what I see?

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keep going onward

It is a beautiful Saturday full of house chores (!) and freedom to do nothing and everything 🙂

It is not bad outside; it was rainy in the morning but right now we have a bright day. I worked a little bit on the yard. It bothers me that I am not done with it yet… Can I please finish it tomorrow and plant the seeds? I am so close, but my arm still hurts. Maybe I can make an effort tomorrow and hopefully cut the grass too. I meant to buy mulch and use it to make my yard look better/control weed. Alas…. The yard work was quite a progress this year, but honestly I am late to finish what I wanted to do, and may not be able to handle it all….. Oh, well 🙂

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I continue to be cranky about my job situation and considering changing it. Based on my past experience, once I put it in my mind, I will do it. But I try to be careful and play safe, too. I cannot lose a job that pays well and with some level of security for another job that does not excite me and does not give me what I already have. The best thing would be to keep an eye on job opportunities, apply if a great opportunity exists, keep going in the current job as if it is the best thing that occurred to me, and if something better is offered to me, consider it seriously. Until then, I will keep going. 

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My sister and mom gave me good information about kefir; while my kefir grains seem to be working in terms of the taste, I cannot get the texture right. I left it undisturbed for 48 hours last time and there was some clots, but nothing too much again. I now have it in a cupboard, the top part is wrapped loosely by a thick cloth, and hopefully it is feeling a little bit warmer, and the bacteria and yeast are feeling more active and alive! 🙂 My sister also suggested that I warm up the milk or the container a little bit to expedite the process. Sounds all great to me 🙂

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And I want to finish this post by stating that I have shopped and feeling better because of it 🙂 What is it with shopping and feeling better, friends? Why is this activity have such a great effect on us/me? 

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random thoughts

I cannot believe we have reached to the end of February!

This year has been passing quite fast. It is hard for me to believe that it has been two months since the holidays when I had 2 weeks off.. Wow! Two months…. It feels like yesterday!

The nice thing is that the three months of our winter has passed. The Spring will be here in May – that feels good 🙂

We will also have the daylight saving times reversed sometime in March – that means we are looking for lighter and brighter days ahead. That also feels good 🙂

This winter has been harsh here in Canada, my friends. We have had a lot of snow days 🙂 It has also been interesting: for the first time in my life here (around 8-9 years), I have walked in the morning to the office from home in winter. I think I have done that in January first and, now, whenever I can, I am aiming to do so (like today)…

What a sense of freedom it gives me and what a great way to relax my mind and work my body. I am awed that I am not afraid of ice or falling this winter (which was the reason that stopped me from walking in winter at the first place).. Change is always possible I guess….

That experience also tells me to question our assumptions and decisions, even though they are comfortable. Perhaps they can be re-assessed and reversed, and the new normal would turn out to be exciting as my winter walking adventure 🙂

Nowadays I particularly feel like walking. I blame partly boredom and partly the fact that I get up early, and as such, end up with having lots of time at my hand 🙂 I walked last Saturday and Sunday around 2 hours each day. And I am planning to walk similarly this weekend. I hope I can make this. My plan is to walk to the shopping mall on Saturday, just to grab a couple of tubes of yogurt 🙂 Let’s see whether the weather will be permissive (if it is raining or heavily snowing, I will not certainly do this 🙂 ) 

Since I walked this morning and did not take the bus, today was also a day that I spent nothing! 🙂

Is that not awesome 🙂

I never thought that that would be possible, but now I can see that I was not thinking careful enough – it certainly is possible. Anyone can do this “no spending days”. Give it a try, my friends, and let us know how you feel. It certainly feels weird and sweet at the same time 🙂 🙂 

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brought Jamie the cat back to the shelter :(

I put Jamie in his carrier using his favorite toy as a bait (after 30 min of trial and error), called a cab, and brought him back to the shelter. The person at the shelter was not happy when she learnt that I was returning a newly adopted animal.. I kind of deserved the somehow unhappy and disapproving face….

I know that if he is not adopted in a certain period of time, he can be euthanized…. This is breaking my heart big time, in addition to all bunch of other things. He was happy here, he wanted to be with me, he was smart, very well mannered (except occasional aggression/frustration that scared me). This last part of course is my own deficiency; I was not ready fully to understand the nature of cats and then handling them better. I did try my best, though.

There were a couple of people at the shelter looking for cats to adopt, or came to take their newly adopted cats home. I really hope, I really want to believe, that he can be adopted and be happy. So, please, if you are reading this, please join me in sending the best wishes for Jamie; let’s all hope that he will find a suitable home right away…. Thank you a bunch… 

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The whole morning, I cried at the office…..

I cried when I returned back from the shelter and started cleaning his room……

I cried when I picked up his scratch post (which I forgot to bring with me to the shelter to donate) and when I heard the bell on it chiming…..

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That cat changed my life in 5 days.

Just 5 days….

I remember many things about him and I: The moment I opened his cage and  the way he looked vulnerable and innocent, sniffed around, and approached me while I was pretending to not show interest in him; the way he accepted my hand and let me scratch his head; the way he ate his first wet food, which he loved; the way we connected and did head-butts; the way I missed him in the mornings; the way he scared me with his runs at nights; the way I lied on the couch with him in the afternoons to let him have a nap next to me; the way he got frustrated when I took him off the keyboard; the way he started to bite whatever I was showing interest on (like my computer or notepads) rather than him; the way he meowed when I came back home from outside; the way he loved to play with his favorite toy and jumped high to get it; the way he looked scary the majority of time except those times  when he was curious about the water dripping from the faucet. This last one I will always remember and cherish – he was so innocent….

I am still surprised that I could take him to the shelter myself. My friend was supposed to help me do this, yet she could not make it today. I sat down and thought again – do I really want to do this?

Emotionally, no. But logically the answer was yes; because it was the best solution not only for me but also for him.

I thought about how he would not get the love/attention he wanted; the way he would get frustrated when I do not let him sleep on my bed; the annoyance and stress he would get when I would leave him behind at a boarding facility for my long trips, at least twice a year and sometimes for 4-5 weeks…. Could he really be happy? Was what I was offering good for him?

No.

So, this was not a solely selfish decision after all.

I was selfish, though. I adopted him when I was very well aware that I would be away from his life for extended periods of time and that would make him unhappy and stressed. Where was my mind then????? If I was not selfish then, I would have not adopted Jamie at the first place.

That is a hard-learnt lesson – never make decisions mostly under the influence of emotions. Assess thoroughly first.

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Jamie in some ways made me learn about myself, too.

What were my borders?  What were my limits? Wishes for myself and others? Unconditional love? Thinking about myself and at the same time for others that I love? How to make difficult decisions? How to cry like a baby for something that entered my life only recently…..

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I am grateful for Jamie the cat for many things, but one particular thing stands out. He was the only living being I said “good morning” in my house that I live now. What an honour, what a beautiful experience to have had him in my house and in my life.

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Before I finish this ordeal, please join me again to wish the best family to adopt him and be happy with him.

Thank you so much.

 

 

sad decisions….

Sometimes there is no ideal choice and you just need to pick one that will better fit your current needs or wishes.

That is what I have done yesterday night.

Tomorrow, I am giving Jamie (the cat I adopted last Friday) back to the shelter.

It breaks my heart….

Jamie is a lovely cat. Just maybe too friendly, which I cannot accommodate in my life; like not being able to pet him very, very frequently as he constantly asks for it; not being able to allow him to lie on my keyboard, which otherwise limits my work and personal time; and not being able to let him sleep on my bed at night.

Rejecting him at these occasions feels very bad and he also shows the signs of frustrations, by biting or chewing….. Yesterday night after a number of biting and chewing attempts I thought: I knew I was not completely ready to have a cat (lots to learn to take excellent care of him), but I had never thought before that I would be scared of a cat….Sure somebody else would have handled these better, but I just feel helpless as to how to figure these out now.

This afternoon, I called the shelter and they expect him back tomorrow. My friend will come to help me to get him in the carrier. People at the shelter were sad…. I was sad. Very sorry…..

I feel like sh.t…..

I am sending a lovely creature out of my life to a shelter that he was not happy with at the first place (he does not like other cats while he is extremely good with people). I am denying him the happiness he has had here with me. I will miss his voice, his warmth, and trust on me. I will miss cleaning his litter box (for some reason, I never negatively reacted to that), picking up food and toys for him. I will miss the good memories we have had in the last four days, the way he made me feel unconditionally loved and trusted.

These are the emotional parts of the entire ordeal. I broke tears many times since yesterday….Emotions, after all, are quite powerful.

There is, of course, a logical part of the entire ordeal as well. I am not only denying him happiness but also frustration coming from not being pet/scratched every 10 minutes. This is actually good for him. I imagine him being quite happy in a new home with multiple people. I imagine him being happy with someone who is just happy with the way Jamie is, or knows how to train him (if there is anything like this)  to not do certain things or show certain behaviors. He is a great cat, young, beautiful, and healthy and I am sure that he can find a new home soon (I do not want to think otherwise….).

As per me; I will continue to feel like a failure, guilty, and heartless for some time. But when I think, I know it is the best decision not only for him, but also for me. I will be back to my regular life and life-style, and reflect on myself, my life, and my relationships with people or animals I love. I just hope that I will not dwell too much on this and over-generalize my failure with Jamie to my entire life and to my other relationships.

Love, my friends, can bring one to her knees, or make one to fly up high. The clash with emotions and logical thinking, on the other hand, can be detrimental; my self-induced self-hate right now, after all, is mostly due to this clash.

I am almost sure in a couple of weeks, I will be fine. Just like how I have overcome the emotions I have had for the first cat I had loved but did not adopt because he had extensive dental problems in the past…. I have hated myself for quite a long time after that, too.

It is strange that all of these and my interest to adopt a cat happened in the last two weeks.

What a strange, emotionally dense, and wonderful time of my life at the same time..

 

cat adoption papers in

I have made another visit to the shelter today; to make sure the energy the cat I like (Jamie) and I was still there. well, he was sleeping and when he woke up, he was pretty grumpy. But hey, I got cold feet again, tried to play with him, and I also tried to hold. He was not in the mood and we left it there.

I put the adoption papers in.

Am I looking for trouble or what? I am not sure.

The worst thing that will happen is that I will not be able to put him in the carrier myself and ask for help.

I also asked about a cat boarding facility and they recommended one that I had already talked to. If I can find someone to sit him while I am away, that would be great. If not, the facilities will make it.

I am supposed to pick Jamie up on Friday. I shopped this afternoon to get prepared. Tomorrow, I will set his room with scratch post, food, water, bed, litter box, and toys. He has got lovely toys 🙂

wish me luck! 🙂

decision day, re: adopting a cat

You know I wanted to adopt a cat and liked two of them last week.

I was ready to adopt the same day the cat I first saw, yet it turned out to have extensive dental problems, which I did not see myself dealing well with. My circumstances are a little bit limiting; I live alone and I make trips for extensive period of time (like 5 weeks family visit I make every year). I could not possibly provide the best (medical) care to this cat, especially while I was away.  It broke my heart very much not to have that cat….

Then I liked another cat and even had one of my friends check him. My friends said that he was a lovely cat with lots of character and that fit my opinion, too. At the weekend though I started to have strong hesitations. Again, what to do with the cat while I am away? How to provide for him?

Also I got somehow confused about the financial aspect of having a cat, understanding their medical needs and sicknesses, and all the diseases I may contract from him.

I worked on these issues quite a bit.

I made calculations (and fellow bloggers helped me to see the expenses more clearly) and I saw that it did not cost too much  to care for a cat.

Also, the diseases could been largely prevented by vaccination and good hygiene at home. After all I was not the first or the only person who would have cats. I am sure whatever the health risks they were, they were manageable.

As per medical needs and sicknesses; I have read many websites and watched many videos. It was tough to learn everything (which I have not, but could over time) but I was feeling like I could learn all of these. The worst thing I could do was to bring the cat to vet every time I was suspicious of something.

So I worked on many of the serious issues I may have with a cat. One thing I could not solve was how to care for the cat while I am away. Long story short, I called two cat boarding facility here this morning. Yes, the both board cats for extensive periods of time. It is kind of pricey, but then it is well worth it.

So…..

Looks like my all problems were solved.

Or, were they?

I have such a cold feet right now and experiencing the biggest hesitation about owning a cat so far; you would not believe. 5 weeks in a boarding facility for a cat is too much. Especially considering the fact that this repeats every single year. I even considered going away for only 3 weeks per year, but then come on; it is my family who I visit and they deserve all the time we can spend together. I do not want to choose between my family and anything else. Even, when it means I will miss a lovely cat in my life.

Taking the cat with me to my family is not a solution either, as the trip is too long, my mom has pet birds at home, I travel to other cities to visit my other family members (which would mean the cat having extra changes and anxieties), and I was not planning to keep the cat in a cage or on leash, either, meaning during the entire time I face a risk of losing the cat.

I really wanted to have one of these cats. I thought they would be excellent companion for me and give me joy, and the love I felt for them was more than anything I can imagine, except the love I feel for my family.

Some choices are hard and this one was too. Overall I am not happy with this decision, but I guess it is the right decision for me.

I hope I will not change my mind again. I kind of got tired of thinking and trying to find solutions to my issues…

what was love for me?

I have no answer to that.

The fact that I have decided not to adopt the cat that I have loved, touched, hugged, and admired (seriously did) only because of its dental problems that showed up at a young age (suggesting a serious problem that will need me to handle in future too, emotionally and financially), I must actually question this very hard.

After all, I too show a behavior of preferring those who are healthy, or have been healthy, over those who have not been, to love, to care for, and to make a part of my life. I know many people who would be hesitant/reject the idea of marrying others who have family history of heart problems or cancer, for example. How is that sensible? Is this not ridiculous?

Has this not been a behavior that disgusted me much in the past? Did I not say that that was discrimination and equally offensive, insensitivity and short-sightedness towards those who have gone thru much already? After all, every living being deserves to be loved, regardless of their conditions.

Who says that we all are healthy and, most importantly, will remain healthy?

Who says we will not make extra effort, emotionally and financially, for others we love in our lives?

Who says that I will not be that person who will be sick or require extra care and effort?

Where is my consciousness? Where is my mind? Where are my values now?

What makes me think that a healthier cat today will not get seriously sick next day and give me the same trouble I would have with the cat I liked but denied to adopt today?

probabilities. reality. emotions. thoughts. calculations……

All internal conflict – that is what I am going thru tonite.

Conflict over my decision.

Conflict about love.

Conflict over myself.

Tonite is a hard night indeed. I admit I cried for that cat and seriously is hating myself time to time.

I gotta be realistic.

I gotta bury my emotions, right?

Right.

But since I am questioning a much bigger concept, love, this does not seem to be possible.

Love, after all, is an emotion. And a very important one.

How can we deny love to others because they are sick, have been sick in the past, or we think they will give us more trouble over time?

How can I do that myself ????

How can I deny love to others because they are sick, have been sick in the past, or I think they will give me more trouble over time ????

……

I really do not like myself right now.

 

my animal shelter experience today

You know I have been considering having a cat as a companion for sometime, which was further motivated by the pest problem I have had in my house in the last few months.

Well; yesterday I ranted a little bit about the cat and I liked at a shelter and my cat-friendly friend who would refuse to go there to give me a hand with her cat-wisdom. I was frustrated and a little bit angry yesterday, but today things turned out to be better.

Let me explain:

Today, my friend took me to another shelter first. It was a nice one with lots of cats, who were not solely cage-contained (they had other contained places to go, including fenced areas outside). How nice.

I have liked one grumpy cat called George, who did not like other cats and preferred to be in his cage only. Okay…. George was a lovely young male cat and it would be awesome to have him around and watch/observe. Yet, my feeling is that his grumpiness could give me some stress, especially when I need to do things that he would not like (like trimming his nails, or putting him in a transporter). So, while he was an awesome and likable one, I a few hours back decided not to get it.

I saw another female cat, white and with odd-eyes. She may be deaf in one ear, not necessarily a great looking cat, but very easy going. I feel affection for her, especially for being deaf in one ear. Her eyes reminds me about “being different” yet still being beautiful and valuable. I am inclined to get her for now. Hopefully thursday. I hope she is a mouser 🙂

When I said to my friend that I also would like to see the cat I liked in the other shelter, she said no first, but then decided to come with me… That was incredible on her side, as she has very strong and negative feelings about that shelter. Anyways; we have been there, the shelter did not take her dog inside the shelter so she had to wait outside, and I checked the cats. They were all contained in cages and they have had no free space to explore, walk, run, or play. This, my friends, is cruel if you ask me and the main reason why my friend did not have a positive feeling about the shelter. I understood her better today and she has every single right to dislike the management of that shelter.

Anyways; I found the cat I liked (i had chosen him thru the website/photos). A very cute and young male cat. very easy going as well – i held him in my arms! I was not scared and he was not scared or aggressive. I asked about him and they told me that he lost a few teeth but was fine now. I went out and asked my friend to check the cat; she came back and said he was lovely. We made plans to adopt him tonite.

Then while driving back, we talked about the teeth and my friend and I got a little bit skeptical about it. For a young cat like him, losing ” a few teeth” would not be considered normal… It would mean he was sick, old, or plain unlucky. I emailed the shelter and it turned out to be a likely permanent gum/neck problem that would require further tooth loss in the future…

My heart bleeds my friends that I will not have him. Considering how much I liked this cat and he may have health problems that require immediate attention, I cannot possibly leave him behind while I am away for extended periods of time (which I do at least twice a year). Since I must make these trips, that means that he should not be under my care.

Would someone love him as much as I do and care for him as he needs? I do not know…. See, I am still hesitant and emotionally would love to get that cat, but logically it is better I do not.

My first cat-love has now ended with a broken heart, I must say.

It is like the first love in life that cannot be  replaced by another. I guarantee you that….

I am determined to love the next cat, though. All living beings deserve love.

animal love and the grief of loss

I am getting cold feet re; adopting a cat.

Two reasons:

1) I was really mentally ready to get a cat today, yet my cat-friendly friend had other urgent matters to attend, so we could not make it to the shelter. Since it did not get the cat today, I am kind of getting frustrated and less motivated to check the cats in the future.

Plus, it turned out my cat-friendly friend has personal problems with the shelter I chose a cat from (thru their website) and she is directing me to another shelter and suggesting to pick one from there… She says we can go there tomorrow.

I am not dependent on my friend, of course. Only that she would be great help pointing out desirable or undesirable things in a cat (she has had cats for a long time). That is one great advantage of having my friend with me while picking the cat.

But, I also do not like my preferences not being considered – I liked a cat (however virtually) and I feel like I should be able to get it if I continue to like it when I meet face-to-face. Down side? I will not have anyone helping me with their cat-wisdom because my friend will not come with me to that shelter.

I now need to decide whether to go after the cat I liked (which means I will not have my friend with me to get ideas), or to go to another shelter with my friend tomorrow and pick a different cat?

Have I mentioned I do not like the uncertainties and would like to make the decision and take the steps immediately? Or, should I completely forget the idea or park it for a while?

Some people say I am not patient. I say, I would like to do and complete things that I put my mind into.

So, this new-decision making ordeal is annoying me. It is like it dangles over my head.. Very annoying indeed.

 

2) My mom just told me with sadness that she has lost two of her birdies, whom I loved dearly too. They were the joy of the household, we loved their chirping and characters, and we have had a strong bond with them. Especially my mom, who tended to their daily needs.

I got very upset and cannot imagine how my mom is feeling about this….

I thought, after having all the grief over these birdies, that perhaps this is the sign that I should not get an animal, another living being, in my care as I also have a chance to lose the cat while in my care – I have to open the doors, both the front and the back doors daily. What happens if the cat just run away to the street where there are cars and other dangers, or to the backyard, which has high fences, but come on, this is a cat who will climb, get lost, or get into fights with the dogs/cats of my neighbours?

Worse yet, what if the cat gets injured, sick, or dead while s/he is with me?

…………..

I guess I will have some break from the cat story for a while.

I hope I will not have another mouse-annoyance in the meanwhile.

list of items I want

I am in the mood of buying stuff..

Whether this is good or bad, I have no idea.

Sure, if I buy things I want (i.e. not necessarily need), I would spend money and save less.

That is a loss. Kind of.

If I buy, then I can enrich my life, my activities.

Dilemma.

What do I want, by the way, that creates this dilemma?

 

baking-related items:

You know I am highly excited about baking bread – it is a great adventure 🙂

I want to have a dutch oven, a bench cutter, and a sifter, in addition to semolina drum flour, rye flour, and buckwheat flour. These are all can be purchased with around $100 – 150.

I certainly do not need this, but would love to have them. After all, rather than buying these I may continue with my current abilities: I can bake the loafs in my oven-safe dishes/cookie sheet; I have a small dough cutter, which is not fully functional but nevertheless works;  I have all purpose, whole wheat, bread, and corn flour at home, which I can use to make breads.

Yet, there is some kind of excitement in wishing to have the other items; to make my bread adventure almost full 🙂

 

furniture:

I would love to have one or two nice carpets. Not the synthetic ones, real, hand-made ones. They are rightfully very expensive, but it does not defer me from wanting them.

I would love to have an additional pantry cabinet; it would have it in the laundry room and place in all the cleaning products, like laundry detergents, dryer sheets, etc.

I also would love some more artwork/decorative pictures around the house; in the living room, bed room, and the bathrooms…

well, all of these would possibly cost me thousands 🙂

eeerk! No way I am paying that much money now 🙂

….

I guess I will have to opt to buy the baking-related items for now. It is possible that I can save some more money by being careful about my weekly spending, which can be then leveraged to purchase them. I may be able to use my fun funds perhaps…

Hope is a good thing 🙂

why I decided to make my own bread

From today on, I will make my own bread and unless excruciating circumstances happen, I will not buy another one, especially the toast bread, from stores.

I do not even toast; why did I keep buying them?

I have been elated by the bread I baked yesterday; it turned out to be just fine. I am awed by yeast making all the work in raising the dough and the pleasure coming out of how healthy this bread was… I kept read all bunch of recipes (thank you fellow bloggers out there) and I know I can improvise and create breads just like I would like them to be. Also, I see this as an  opportunity to enjoy my life, at least for now or as long as I have time to bake my breads. What other hobby than baking to feel excited nowadays 🙂

I also made a cost analysis; it is rough but I think it is much more cheaper (not more expensive as I had thought earlier) to bake at home than to buy at stores. What was I doing all these years, buying, eating, and absolutely not enjoying the toast bread?

There is a freedom in this decision. I hope to have time every two weeks to bake my lovely loafs. I really do no like the store breads (except the baguette). So baguette will be one type I will try soon. I am planning to have so many different types, I hope I will not end up eating too much 🙂

The bread I baked yesterday (my first trial) changed me in a very positive way. This morning, I switched from bagel to tea biscuit; the reason was that at the cafe I eat now the coffee is awesome, but bagel is not the best (usually not toasted well, it is served almost cold and even the butter does not melt… come on..). I decided after getting so delighted by my bread experience yesterday that it was enough – I needed to substitute things that did not serve me well anymore. And finally after contemplating and reading many recipes, I have decided that I can make my own bread, many different types all healthy and healing, and get rid of the store bread as well.

I am glad I have had a good experience with my first trial of bread (very motivating); I am glad I have decided to leave the bagel behind and switch to something I rather can enjoy; and I am glad that I could translate this attitude for my feelings toward the store-bought bread and now am determined to leave it behind, too.

Life is good my friends 🙂

what to do today?

Argh…

I am bored. Tomorrow is the work day and work day means I must make important decisions, particularly an unpleasant one. The right decision is the best one, yet what do we do when the right decision pisses other people and this may return back to me as an issue in future?

Stress is not something I like. But I do not like being wrong, either. All of us must have been at this corner time to time. So you understand me.

I know I have a great day in front me yet I do not know how to spend it. I have been watching a TV series; I guess it is time that I give it a break and try something else.

I considered buying myself a lunch, but decided against it. I may try reading a book, but it is not very appealing right now, either. I am in the mood of exploring things, whether it is the merchandise on the shelves of a store or an unknown part of the city. Honestly I have no interest in going somewhere just to explore this city (the curse of a small and unappealing city), so it looks like it is a store.

I need some excitement, something interesting to do this afternoon and it is a pity that one thing I can come up with is to possibly shop. So be it, but that also tells me how pathetic my daily routine may get.

Enjoy your Sunday and may you all find something nice, exciting, or lovely in this beautiful day.

#BreakingTheRoutine

 

regrets

Like anyone else, I have regrets in life.

I regret eating unhealthy food today. I regret buying a useless book at the airport yesterday. I regret not losing any weight since the beginning of fall despite making huge changes and effort. I regret living in a city with limited energy. I regret loving my job so much that I keep present wherever it is present. I regret not have spent a long time with my family. I regret not saving money while I have had it. I regret not being happy. And I regret many other things in life.

I was having a conversation with a good friend of mine and the more we talked, the more clear it became that regrets were inevitable. Especially when we needed to choose between different alternatives or take different routes.

But whether or not some regrets were inevitable because we had no control over them was debatable. Regrets were certainly context-dependent and some regrets were unnecessary. Realizing this was uplifting and frankly made my day; I do not need to beat myself over some regrets – I can rather accept there was no better alternative, I tried my best, it did not work out, and I can move on. Priceless 🙂

For example, I can regret buying that book and spending $25 on it now. But if I had not bought it, I could regret it, too, because I would probably be bored at the airport by doing nothing much. I chose between the two alternatives; buying and not buying. I resent my choice right now, but I could as well resent not having this choice. So feeling the regret does not serve me well; I tried to prevent boredom and did not become lucky with the book. That is all. There is no room for regret here. Let’s move on.

I regret eating unhealthy today. I do not know why I have not eaten better. Maybe I needed to shop. Maybe I did not want to cook and prepare food. Maybe I just said “okay, I will start it again tomorrow“. I made a choice and now I regret it. This regret is different than what I experienced with the book (above), though; I do not think I would regret eating healthy, for example… In other words, the other alternative, eating healthy, was an a lot better and perhaps the best alternative. This regret is well deserved, as I simply did not make a good decision. I hope that regret now can serve as a valuable teacher for me to make better choices next time…

I regret not being happy (I am not unhappy, either – I am in a neutral state between being happy and unhappy), as I know what happiness means and how great it feels. I did not make the choice of being unhappy or being not happy. In contrast, I always wanted to be happy. “Maybe you just do not know how to be happy“, one may say… (I hope noone will say this; happiness sometimes is not attainable by the way it works for others). Anyways, I regret not being happy, but I did not choose it. So why do I have regret?

I guess the answer lies in the fact that I still believe that I can be happy and I can work towards it. So far in 40 something years, I have not figure out what it is that can give me lasting happiness (except falling in love with someone great… then happiness was the natural state; I just remembered….). But there is hope. One day.

I also regret spending my time and years in a city that does not excite me. My alternative is to move somewhere else, but I did not make this decision yet. I regret living here, but cannot take the steps to change it.

Why is that?

Because I can understand that the alternative may not be so good either and I may regret it big time, too. For one, finding such a job that I have here is almost impossible. Even though I am not making a lot of money, my salary and job are stable. If I leave this job, I may never have such financial and job stability in my life, even though I get everything else that I long for for an exciting life… That is the scariest part of it.

The moment I wrote the above sentence, however, something blinked inside my mind. I remembered that using the word “never” was a way of generalizing things without much evidence. So, who knows? Maybe there are other jobs that can provide me with these stability somewhere else. Maybe I should go check for them, yes? 🙂

Writing is awesome; it helps clear things for me. But more than that I am grateful for having hope 🙂

The life in the diary – XVI

Fiction

———————————————————————–

May 6, 2013

I am feeling a little bit better today.

I had a nice walk around the beaches area. To me it is a small, lovely village in a big, big city. What a nice change of atmosphere in such a short distance.

I walked around the beach, sat on a bench for an hour so, ate a hot-dog and drank my tea. Yep, I have got a hot-dog; not necessarily the best food in the world 🙂 I feel like compensating for this by drinking the tea; a nice hot cup of papaya and mango tea. It smelt so good that I had to close my eyes for a second and enjoy that feeling entirely. That moment felt good… I am pleased to have delightful moments. However transient they may be….

I think feeling the sun on my skin cheered me up today. What is it about the sunlight that is so energizing, so nourishing? Science says it must be the hormones that are regulated by the sunlight. And maybe it is the vitamin D my skin cells produce when exposed to sun light?

Vitamin D… That brings to my mind the recurring question – I do not know what to do about the supplements. Should I take them? Should I not? Some scientific studies suggest that they are useful. But then the regulatory institutions/organizations say that it is premature to make a definite conclusion about the health benefits of many supplements. All these internet sites that promote them, all the people they say they benefit from them. Whom to trust? What to do? I feel stuck at a corner. What if they are useful? What if I am missing something by not taking them? Or, what if taking them would not benefit me, worse yet, harm my body? What if I would think it was fine to eat whatever I want as long as I take the supplements, as I would believe they would do all the good? No, I m skeptical. Way too skeptical…

That is so tiring…. Trying to make decisions fast, many all at the same time. Considering cons and pros of all these things that are new to me, new to my life. I am in a constant rush, carrying with me a heavy load of impatience. That stresses me;  the more hurriedly my mind tries to make a decision, the darker my psyche gets; I feel unhappy, confused, inefficient.. My shoulders sink – I do not want these feelings. To run away from them, I get up and walk away from the bench.

I love seeing the families with children, parents, and dogs; they are busy enjoying this beautiful spring day. That feeling eventually turns into resentment, though. Why can I not enjoy my life? Why was I denied this?

What is more unfair I wonder; to get cancer, or to get frustrated by others’ happiness, health, and joy?

I am very close to hating myself for this ever-expanding selfishness. I gotta remind myself that not everything is about me.

But then it is; is it not?

————————————————-

The life in the diary – XVI

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decluttering, decisions, and the need for change

Mostly because I was tired of the fear of going thru the clutter in my living room (which also includes my study), I have started decluttering my living room this evening; I have not done a super-duper work yet. I just dusted two shelves of a bookcase, went thru each item there, dumped those that are absolutely not necessary, found some items (like USB keys) I keep buying as I need them big time (yay!), and torn down the used-up pages out of my notebooks – that is all (while the work I have done was little, it somehow felt good – see below).

Ironically, this area is a mess right now; with books, stationary items, and others sorted and put in different piles. Even though I do not like having such a disorganized view in my home and I do absolutely dislike having unfinished work once started, to my surprise I am not annoyed. I guess the reason is that I am glad that I started; I know that once started I will keep going. At least the fear of doing this activity is gone…. But more than these, I stopped after half-an-hour of cleaning and decluttering because I felt like I was not making good decisions.

Consider this example: I found 4-5 cards and their envelopes in a box on the shelf. They are in good condition, but looking at them does not bring me joy or excitement. Plus, I had completely forgotten their existence and as well may live without them. My dilemma is: what to do with them? Store for future use because now I am aware of their existence and as such can appreciate and make use of them in future, or dump or give away because I do not necessarily like them and I have not used them in the last, I do not know how many, years…

I pondered about it and I am glad to say that I now decided I would not like to keep them. So tomorrow, they will be in a different pile. Good job.

There are however other, more important decisions to be made: which books should I keep? This will give me quite a head-ache. I am clear about donating the novels, as once I read them I cannot re-read. But what about others? The books I have not read yet are also okay; I will prioritize them to read next time (it is actually exciting that I have books I have not read yet). But among those I read about history, science, personal development, and project management; which one of them should I keep? If I am not keeping books, how should I get rid of them? donate them to friends, library, or charity?

On a interesting twist, I dumped many cards sent to me by friends and colleagues. They were all nice-looking cards with good wishes in, yet they have been on my window trim for more than a year. It felt right to get rid of them, clean the area, and implement a change by placing a nice pot of plants. I am not sorry for this decision – change became that area and it feels good.

nevertheless, I have some lessons learnt from this afternoon’s experience:

1) although I have not read the book (but read many blogs about it), I seem to be embracing the Konmari way of decluttering (i.e. whatever does not give joy should go),

2) it may be scary or unpleasant to declutter a part of the house, but it eventually happens and feels good,

3) as usual decluttering activity helps with remembering the existence of our stuff, and bringing them out for use or donation (either way, it is good),

4) if you feel like you do not make good decisions, stop before you move on, give yourself time, and wait for the clarity that comes with the break, and

5) even for things that we love so much at the time being, there will be a time to replace them with something else (because we crave for change in the scenery).

decision making is hard sometime

Sometime I can make a decision right away. I am talking about daily-life related decisions, such as what to buy, what not to do, how to have my relaxing routine etc.

At work as well; if it is clear and I am knowledgeable or experienced about, I can make a decision in a split second. I am sure many of us behave like this.

Then, there are other decisions, other situations that require a little bit more reflection. In such cases, if the knowledge and prior experience is not available, I found the best thing is to wait a while to re-examine the situation and then make a decision. Surely, others’ opinions I sometime ask or I do my own research, or just listen to my guts. I started this strategy a while ago when I experienced a set-back when I did not re-visit the situation and made a deficient decision. Since then, I practice this “wait and re-visit” policy.

Sometimes, just sometimes though it is not clear to me how much I should reflect, how long I should spend reflecting or re-examining the situation. These times I feel like having a “mental paralysis” which is not fruitful at all. It is also very painful and is draining. Damage to the confidence should be acknowledged as well. Plus, I have to deal with my own self-critique that blasts me all the time.

Sometimes, I just gave up. Not in the sense that I do not care, but in the sense that I accept the limitations of my decisions or the possible consequences. In those times, I believe doing something is better than not doing anything.

So today I made a decision on one of the projects that I had stopped because of an issue. That is an exciting project with very promising results. There is a way to fix the issue, yet this itself may create more problems. So I decided to rather go ahead with minor modifications, which although will not resolve the issue, will at least get the project completed with a little bit of limitation. That is quite a relief.

I am seriously relieved. I know in a couple of weeks I can prioritize that project and finish it. That makes me happy 🙂

thoughts and second thoughts

So it is gonna be another sleepless night – it is all right. I am not gonna force myself to sleep.

I am tired and my body wants to sleep but not my mind – my mind is full awake. There are so many thoughts going thru it; things that I miss today that I need to take care of tomorrow, second thoughts that change the next course of action.

I find myself in this situation time to time; changing initial decisions when I think about the issue at hand with a relaxed mind. I do keep missing things when rushing. Recognizing this, sometime I delay the important decisions and work as well – sometimes it is useful – I can come up with the best solution, but sometimes it just stays and stays in my to-do list and I lose my interest completely. The end result is less fun, more procrastination, and mediocre work. My take based on these experiences is to make a careful assessment but not over-do it or rush it; just make sure it is the right time with right tools at hand; all the facts, the needs and constraints, and the future implications all assessed by a clear mind. That is the optimum situation,

You may ask, “how do you know you have the right time, the complete and correct collection of facts, needs and assessment of future implications?”.

Well, I am with you on this critical question. I cannot know it in the majority of the cases. Thus, all I can do is to give it enough effort and energy and then feel that I have done my best. And then let it move on. If it was not the optimum solution, then I can deal with it later and that is okay. As long as it is not something that would hurt someone or crush our projects to the ground.

Some things I cannot know, do, or succeed and that is okay. There are plenty I can.

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