Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Wired up differently

I live with a house full of males so I get the whole - men are from Mars kind of thinking. Let me simplify it for you though – men’s brains are wired differently.

Proof of this wiring difference occurred last night in my house. Youngest son asked me what the difference is between 2
π R and π R squared. So if you’re a math whizz, then you’re three steps ahead of me and understand this symbol means pi (Google my lifelong friend) and you may even know the answer to the question.

If you don’t know the answer then, please, climb up on my ol’ bandwagon because while I didn’t know the answer, I also didn’t care – other than to help my son with his question.

My son always asks me school related questions because I give better explanations than his dad – well anyway that’s my reasoning and I’m sticking to it. The thing is my blank stare and inane look might have indicated some of my ignorance.

See, I was also that charming student in high school who bemoaned what a waste of time it was to learn about Pythagoras’ Theorem and algebra and geometry and all the other useless rubbish.

Really where was I ever going to use it in the grown up world?

My ignorance last night had hubby sitting up with interest and asking why son needed to know. Son’s reply, so he could measure the surface of a pool and calculate how many tiles were needed but also so he could allow for an island in the centre of the pool. Of course, why didn’t I think of that?

Now ask me to describe that pool and I can do it in as many or as few words as you want. For me; descriptive, enticing, visual words – piece of cake, but measurements – ugh. Son definitely got the man-math gene from hubby. See men’s brains are wired differently.

Is it any wonder this world gets so mixed up when our brains are wired differently?

One of my magazines this week had a story about a woman who asked her hubby to go to the shop and buy a carton of milk, and if they had eggs in store to buy 6. Now you and I know what that means, but he obviously didn’t.

He came home with 6 cartons of milk and to his bewildered wife he explained that yes, they did have eggs in store. Wired differently - yes???

I work in communications, so now can you see how hard my job is?
It doesn’t matter sometimes what you say or in how many ways you say it; it just doesn’t get through. We all think differently and are passionate about different things.

The thing is we can laugh at this guy and even feel sorry for his wife – but the reality is that this guy is a co-worker, a neighbour, a customer, a client, or heaven forbid a family member.

Everyone’s brains are wired differently and there’s no one message which suits the wiring or understanding of every individual. Plus, I’ve still never used Pythagoras’ Theorem or algebra or geometry in the grown up world.

Cheers, Fi

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Life balance...what's that?

Sunny, humid days are the norm at the moment, yet in little old Adelaide the high humidity is not so normal. Why is it that hot sunny days and humidity are so much more bearable when you're on holidays?

Maybe it has something to do with the pools and beaches and relaxing which are usually a part of my holidays. Humid weather activities are not cooking and cleaning and shopping. How many times have I said if we didn't have to eat then I would have more time and heaps more money.

Plus if we didn't have to eat, then weight problems wouldn't exist.

At the moment I'm trying to get more balance in my life, after all there's more to life than just work and cooking and cleaning. The concept of life balance is almost an oxymoron (gees I love that word) much like 'living dead' is a contradiction of terms, so too is 'life balance'.

I'm not saying you can't get balance, you can, but some days it's more of battle than others.

So in my bid for greater balance, I enrolled for a computer course, I'm trialling lots of new recipes (if I have to cook it might as well be interesting) and I'm also not whining quite so much when hubby wants to go out somewhere (I'm really not a social butterfly in my old age) yet I married one, so I have to grin and bear it some days. Quality time together after all.

I'm also doing more reading and writing about self improvement and business planning, and not so much blogging and commenting, nor am I wandering aimlessly around the internet as much. Ten years ago I'm not really sure how I managed to work, study, play baseball and chauffeur 3 children to school and almost constant sporting activities.  

Friends comment that our kids are now at a good age because they're self sufficient and pretty well look after themselves. Mum is still good for money and food, but sports and school / work they can now get themselves there. So why do I seem to have even less time to do what I want?

As the years pass, do we do things slower, linger over things longer or does time just speed up the older we get? I'm not sure, but once upon a time I seemed to have all the time in the world to do everything I want and now I feel like there's just not enough minutes in my days to get it all done.

How are you achieving better life balance, or are you struggling like I do some days? If I could find the solution to this question I could give up work tomorrow.

Hope you have a great 'balanced' week,

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Taking time to smell the roses

Every now and again you have one of those sensational kind of weekends where everything goes well, plenty of time for relaxing and lots achieved without being stressed doing it. This weekend was one of those weekends. I needed one after the busy, busy week we've had.

I had my grandson Friday night, haven't had him for awhile so that was a nice treat, he's just a giggly, happy and mischievous little boy. People adore him everywhere you take him.

He laughed and played happily from the minute I picked him up until the minute I put him to bed and then as always he just laid down and went to sleep, no grizzles, no complaint. Our little man is not a baby any more, he's all grown up at 19 months old.

I did the boring and mundane things like house work and washing but when it's 37c outside then being inside in air-conditioned comfort and doing housework is not a big thing. Then hubby and I took a long walk on the beach on Saturday night with our dog and then stopped for an ice cream on the way home, what a lovely finish to the day.

Hubby is finishing up his second week of holidays (3 to go) and look at what he's been doing to keep busy - building a wood fire pizza oven. He put the final bricks in today. He now just has to wait for the top to dry, put the fire proofing on and then render the whole thing. Then he has to organise a door for it and followed by the firing process to set everything. Believe it or not, this thing weighs around a tonne.

He's pretty talented my hubby
When it's finished everything we eat for the next month will be cooked in this wood fire oven till he gets the hang of cooking in it. It was the same when he built the outdoor spit and we ate roasts for ever and a day as he practiced. Pizza and bread - mmm time to get back on the treadmill perhaps.

Today with all my house clean and it being too hot to do much else, I sat and read and wrote and started to get some structure around some business plans I have. A few nice cold drinks at the pub this afternoon with a live band and then home to an awesome Asian salad that I'd been planning to make.

Don't you love when something new comes together so well and everyone raves about it, I do. This was my version of a meal that I often have at a Vietnamese restaurant that myself and co-workers go to near work for our 'special' Friday get-out-of-the-office lunches.

Truth be know I'm not much of an adventurous cook, hubby is the one who loves to cook and experiment and I love to let him do it. But this was a nice meal and I was happy with the results.

Now it's 8pm on a Sunday night, both the boys have had big weekends so are already in bed. Hubby's snoozing on the lounge and the dog is basking in her delight at being able to lie on her mattress under the air-conditioning. This dog has a pretty good life.

Let's face it, I have a pretty good life and the good moments make up for the normal shitty little moments we all have to go through.

Now I guess that with everything done I'll just have to relax under the air-conditioning and read my book. Have a good week everyone.

Monday, February 11, 2013

I don't procrastinate, I just hesitate...

I get frustrated by people who say one thing and then do another, who tell you they plan to take action and then they don't. Yet, I'm just as guilty as the people who frustrate me because shock horror, I'm also guilty of procrastinating.

But now someone is on to me, she sent me an email the other day 
Hey Fiona,  
One of my clients was in a dilemma. She could procrastinate for a few more months about something that was important to her, or take action. But she was nervous.
What would you do if you were her?

She said: ‘You just come to the point when putting it off is more painful than the fear of actually doing it. You have to act, and you can’t put it off any longer, or it just eats at you because you know you have let yourself down and let the fear defeat you.’
It doesn't matter that she sent me an email because I'm debating over which course I want to take and I haven't had a chance to decide which one suits me best (note the familiar excuse) The fact is I took offence at her words and then realised that at the same time she was spot on.

I do procrastinate, I want everything to be totally perfect, so I wait for the right time. That is why it took me 18 months from finishing my book to publishing it - I was waiting for the perfect time. There is no perfect time, eventually my mum was the one who gave me the kick in the pants and said just do it in regards to publishing my book.

The funny thing (and not the ha-ha kind of funny) is that I don't lack for goals and I don't have problems achieving them. I've accomplished many goals that I've set, but those ones which are close to my heart - like my writing and planning my next career moves. Those are the ones I procrastinate over, just in case I make the wrong move.

Or maybe it's because the sky is not quite blue enough today, or work is too busy, maybe I need to edit my writing just a little bit more, perhaps I have a busy few weeks ahead so its better to wait.

I know that no day is a perfect time to start, I know the reality is that starting is the first step towards achieving, yet despite that absolute reality, I still hesitate.

So maybe I don't procrastinate, I just hesitate.

What works for you to limit the hesitating, or do you just charge in and do it regardless.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Champion dummy spitter

Sometimes you have to throw a hissy fit or spit the dummy to get results, as pathetic and childish as that may be. If I could get away with it I would probably throw myself on the ground and kick and scream.

A grown woman in high heels throwing a tantrum on the office floor does not usually advance ones career in the right direction, so I try to restrain myself.

My greatest failing and it annoys the hell out of me is when I get frustrated or angry then I want to cry. What's that all about?

You can't really be angry, or make people see how angry you are when you have tears in your eyes. Nor can I speak coherently or voice my frustration properly when I have tears welling up.

So I did the whole bit this week (except for throwing myself on the floor) because I'd put up with being frustrated for way too long.

Enough said about all of that, lets say that I finally achieved some positive results and I learnt that I should speak up sooner rather than later and should stop being miserable if I don't.

I also went to my first Adobe Indesign course session last night - loved it. Should have done this months ago as well. I have researched every single course under the sun over the last however many months and finally I just paid for one. The no refund policy meant I was committed.

I've studied so much over the years, so I'm not sure why I took so long to decide on something, anything. I have another long term course that I'm going to sign up for also and I also have an amazing business idea gelling in my mind at the moment as well, more on that when it becomes clearer about the best way to do it.

It's amazing how dealing with one things can open up everything else in your head. Like dominoes falling, one movement  and everything starts happening at once.

One step, any step, is that first step on the path towards amazing things and less of feeling miserable about standing still.

What's your first step?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

We never learn do we...

I'm definitely too old to drink alcoholic punch and dance all night to Village People and Meatloaf, but sometimes we think we can do it anyway. Every day we should also learn and discover new things and today I've learnt that I have muscles I didn't know I had and that three panadol do amazing things when you have a five piece band in your head.

Awesome night last night for hubby's 45th birthday celebrations, he missed his 40th celebrations due to us being away on holidays so he decided this was to be his landmark celebration this year.

We expected roughly 50 people to turn up - and they did, yet hubby (as is his habit) catered for 100. Catering for this number of people is no longer a chore or a stress, not sure that it ever has been. I must have been a caterer in a former life, either that or over the years we've simply catered (partied) a heck of a lot. I think probably the latter because I can now do it with my eyes closed.

Hubby did a pig on the spit (yeah we could probably also start a catering business with the number of household 'essentials' we have) Everyone has a homemade full size spit in the back yard don't they?

Fantastic food, awesome friends and good times together - that's what life is all about.

I've been up for three and a half hours, everything is cleaned up and put away (same said awesome friends helped with most of the clean up before they left in the early hours of this morning) so now I'm ready for my afternoon nanna nap.

Even our dog acts like she hasn't slept for a week. She's usually tucked up in bed by 9ish most nights so last night she also partied hard and ate too much. She hasn't moved for most of the day, she's out cold and sound asleep. It's a dog's life huh?

The morning after the night before

We also have enough food left over to feed an army; eldest son and his housemates got their meals-on-wheels delivery this morning when I dropped by with a just a 'few leftovers.' Another girlfriend dropped by to pick up her stuff and also left with a three course meal.

Yep, so it's now time for a little nap, have a good week everyone.