Tag Archives: life humour

How to be Miserable

How to be Miserable

The following video 7 Ways to Maximize Misery was created by CGP Grey and has been out for awhile, so I’m a bit late to the party. I have to say I found it quite humorous.

It was inspired by the book, How to be Miserable Forty Strategies You Already Use, by Randy J. Paterson.

There is also a great follow-up article written by Randy J. Paterson about the video and how he tabulated the comments. Check out:

Tabulating Comments to “7 Ways to Maximize Misery”

Sometimes we just have to put all seriousness aside and have a little laugh at ourselves.


Social Media

Today, I attended a Chamber of Commerce meeting with a guest speaker whose expertise was in social media. Clearly, there is a lot to learn especially if you are a business. Conversations and community building has come a long way and just when you think you are tapped into this community something new comes along.

There is a whole lot of different names to go with this media world, some of which only made sense to me after he explained what they do. Slideshare, Digg, Ning, Scribd all were under my radar until listening to this speaker. I also learned where not to devote my time as a business owner, some things lean heavily to certain demographs and may not be suitable.

I’m not on Facebook, as I keep hearing conflicting information about the effectiveness and privacy issues. Outside of finding long lost friends is it worth my time? In fact, many times when I talk to people it is in the context of finding old buddies or ex partners where it appeals most. Now, I couldn’t do my job or be the friend I am without being a people person, but somehow I felt Facebook may just open me up to a whole lot of people I care not to know. Having said that, if there is a compelling reason to get my message out further and Facebook was the best avenue, I, like many others may go that route.

Did you know that Canadians are the biggest user of Facebook? I found out that people over 65 are growing in numbers as users of the site. (Guess they don’t have to worry about what pictures they put up after they retire)

Twitter, interesting. A colleague of mine says she has found it quite useful, I may need to explore it but again I’m undecided. I enter into all these areas with great hesitation and questions – Who is looking? What is the benefit? Do I need to know you or you me? Is what I have to say worth it? Is this just adding more to my under-developed but over-exposed techno mind? Thus causing a large amount of stress as I find the time and the inclination to be “socially” in touch.  Tweet ….”in my office debating whether to tweet or not to tweet.”

Then we have to use social media measurement tools, now I’m using tools to track who is tracking me. My head is spinning, how am I going to facilitate, write, coach/counsel, have personal time with all of this? Apparently, everyone has time for their job, marketing, blogging, facebooking (?) , tweeting and being Linkedin.

Then there is “followers” now that would have been considered very cult like years ago but now we encourage and rejoice in the number of followers we have and we follow too. Sure we are not handing our flowers or shaving our heads and there is no compound except if you count this box we are all happily typing into everyday. It is a shared experience for sure, we are sharing a lot of personal things like one big happy family, just not our money. If you make more money from any of these sites it is all yours!

Yes, it was quite the learning experience for me today. Great to be informed, off to do more research on all the social media sites and will try to pick those that keep me connected but not too much. I need a life.

A year in review, or not

A year in review is not something that takes a lot of effort. First, look way back to January 1st, with goals or resolutions ready for launch. Then blink and “Voila!” – you are now at the end of the year.

I swear, as I get older that is exactly how it is. One minute we are in plan mode, the world is our oyster, the ideas are flowing, we are in control and we have 365 days to get it all done. Somehow, that 365 days folded inward and became 182.5 and that’s being generous. In actuality it probably folded so much it looked like origami.

I’ve decided this year I’m going to be a little sneakier, I will make 2010 think I’m ready for the journey but instead I’m going to sprint. Peddle to the metal, baby…it won’t know what streaked by and it will have no time to close ranks around me.

Trying something new, no problem! Write more, you bet! Travel to new lands, I’m on it! Laugh a lot, Hell ya! Make business more pleasurable and pleasure more notable, I’m on fire! Work out more…sure…reduce chocolate consumption…..maybe…do more gardening……Ahhh, OK… learn to cook more recipes…….whatever.

I’m already feeling sluggish and I haven’t started the first day of the New Year.



Complaint Department is Open

The complaint department is now open! Those who are sensitive to people who are advocates for complaining need not read on.


Have you ever recognized how much we all complain? Recently, I read an article that was touching on the very topic of complaining it was entitled The Kvetch Klatch by Amy Baskin in the November issue of Canada’s More Magazine. It explored the possibility that as we get older we may complain more and want to gather with others to commiserate.

There was some good news about our getting together to air our complaints, apparently it can be good for you to complain with people of like age and life situations according to Robin Kowalski, a psychologist who studies complaining (who knew you could study it and be paid?). “We feel validated, get good advice” and socially it brings people together. (Providing, I guess, you have something better to talk about from time to time otherwise you may just clear a room) There is more to this but I’m not going to rehash everything this woman wrote, I suggest you read the article for yourself.

Last night, again watching my Andy Rooney segment on 60 Minutes, he addressed viewers that accused him of being negative, complaining too much, that is part of his job isn’t it? He proceeded with a great little piece in which he positively enhanced negatives. Maybe that helped all those that felt he complains too much sleep a little easier, though I doubt it. After watching I’m sure they were complaining about his negativity.

I come from a long line of complainers, it is guaranteed that a conversation with my family will get bogged down in complaints and negativity. At times I interject when it is getting too much with something lighter, a humorous quip or just simply tune out the bulk of what is being said. That is not always good when you are to respond, and well…I kinda wasn’t listening. A good laugh eventually is had but still the negativity and complaints are really some of my family members claim to fame. Maybe they should have their own show, but make it 30 Minutes, less commercials which really makes it the 10 Minute show. (but, whose complaining, certainly not me)

When I complain I don’t expect anyone to fix it, it’s not necessary to fix my problem just to air it. Being truthful in the moment, complaining to my hearts content is therapeutic. It is true that going to people of like mind or understanding is far more helpful. My friends and I have the ability to complain for over an hour on the phone or in person and think nothing of it by the time we are finished. A few laughs, compassion, understanding, thoughtful suggestions, no overpowering judgement and good advice usually lightens the load.

I liken complaints, when discussed with others, as something that needs gentle pressure. Kind of like when you have a knot in the muscle and you just hold your fingers on that tension, pushing with just a little firmness makes it back off. You are released! I see this all the time in my work, people who for the most part have legitimate reasons to complain but just being heard opens the space for movement in the right direction.

It is good to complain, not all the time, but just enough to make forward progress on an issue. Some people are great at it and their complaining can be quite entertaining, providing real food for thought. If someone is an energy drainer than take in as much as you can with your ears and don’t expect to fix it with your mouth. Go to someone in your life or a group of people that can truly see it for what it is, and don’t think you are above this because there is always a reason to complain…just ask Andy Rooney.

Andy Rooney Not Negative

Help! I’m stuck in my office!

Help! I’m stuck in my office and I can’t get out!

I’m sitting in my not so comfortable office chair, wrapped in a blanket and heated bean bag…don’t ask…OK, do…furnace has apparently gone on strike. Yes, trying to be very professional, getting all my work done while freezing is not easy. I keep moving around from time to time just to get some circulation happening in my extremities.

Being stuck in my office is not good. I know I have to get work done but what would be great is to wiggle my nose like Samantha in Bewitched and BAM! It’s all done.

At one point I did step outside during my lunch break and thought…“Is it warmer out here, than inside?” I think so. I’ve got to complain to the boss!

“Where is my ergonomic chair?” “Isn’t there a policy about creating a healthy work environment?” “If so, what are you going to do about the heating problem?” “I think I had expressed in my contract the need for more tea breaks.”

Then it dawned on me, I am the boss. I really should start taking my grievances seriously and by the way ….the office is now closed for the day.

Dating Pet Peeves

Today, at my hair salon, my stylist was talking about her latest dates. She is an intelligent, attractive, and well spoken woman of 27 years who has a pet peeve. Two different guys that she dated could not spell, not just common mistakes but really couldn’t spell. She said, she would get text messages (despite the already abbreviated language used) full of spelling mistakes. One of the guys had not graduated high school, which she didn’t find out until after going out for a bit. This could explain some of the problem but either way for her it is a turn off. I offered up that these guys may have had a learning disability but that is a mute and overused point, the real point was her pet peeve, they can’t spell.

Another person shared a story in which her daughter could not continue dating somebody because he had a lot to talk about when he was texting but not when they were in person. Given that she is a shy person herself she found it ironic that her conversations skills were better than his. She broke up with him, if he can’t talk in person what is the point. Her pet peeve, her date was speechless unless he was technologically hooked up.

I was reminded in hearing those stories what my pet peeve was back in my dating days, bad table manners. I could not stand a guy who didn’t know how to properly use his knife and fork. I mean, come on! A grown man should not be awkwardly clutching his fork like a four year old straight up in the air or holding his knife like some cave man carving the kill of the day. Even worse, was when they chewed with their mouth open. I couldn’t help but hear the slapping sound and notice the food rolling around inside of their mouth like clothes in a dryer.

We all have likes and dislikes and we are not perfect but real annoyances can keep you from having one more date, even if the guy is attractive in other ways. Who knows how are pet peeves come to be but they are probably a good thing to note. If you can’t live with it now, there is a good chance you are not going to be able to live with it for years to come.

I can’t help but laugh when I hear the stories of people’s pet peeves. We all get this look on our face and a strong voice that lets others know this is a non-negotiable item. I think I’m going to keep this one open, bring it up from time to time with people as I never learn the origin of the pet peeve but the stories that go along with it are great.

If you have a dating pet peeve now or in the past, feel free to share.

Cell phone in Ladies Washroom

Time for a little life humour.

OK, I’m in IKEA returning an item and before embarking on my spending spree to redecorate my office, I hit the ladies washroom.

Busy place,  with only two stalls open I walk in and get my self…..well situated. On the left of me, a stall is already occupied and then a woman proceeds to enter the stall on my right. I can hear her speaking on her cell phone, surely she is going to hang up, right? No.

I can hear the faint sound of a male voice, she continues her conversation and then the inevitable. A flush! Loud and clear from the stall to my left, I follow up with my flush, even louder as it is within a foot or so of her cell phone. The guy on the other end of her phone, I believe, has clued in as I hear; “I’m in the bathroom…Oh, Ok, I’ll call you back”.

Now, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I would have hung up before I entered the washroom. Hasn’t cell phones already infiltrated too much of our public areas. We have adapted to people seemingly talking to themselves as they walk through the mall or chat while dining at the restaurant. We loathe the person who is driving, eating and talking on their cell phone, but come on!

Can we not sit on the toilet in a public restroom without having what we are doing ride the airwaves? Some public places need to remain cell phone free zones. Personally, I vote for restroom stalls.

NO CELL PHONES ALLOWED!                    All In Favour, Flush!!

Chemo Woman Chronicles

My Blogroll: Lise

I want to share with you the blog of a friend who allows people into her daily life, but also candidly tells it like it is as she battles cancer. Going through treatment is an auguous thing that some readers may understand, but many others will not.

When we view this from the blogging perspective it still leaves enough room for us to stay safely away from some of the feelings that come up in their presence. It can be very therapeutic too for the blogger. Writing essays, journaling and now blogging allows what needs to escape from within, a route in which to do so. Unlike the journaling of yesterday, blogging is visible to anyone who wishes to peak inside the mind of another. We can learn many things from this cleansing experience, but in this case we still can’t touch the depth to which cancer can affect someone. Especially somebody that we love.

When I read Lise’s blog I really feel the learning extends beyond her body, knowing cancer and the treatment it requires is another education I’m sure all of us would rather never to be schooled in. She really pushes on, despite the challenges of it all… no choice I guess. What I do know is that she has had an incredible year, completing her Masters, surgery, offers for work, opportunity to use her talents and battling the affects of Chemo.

So given that 2008 has been packed so full with so much learning and life experience please join me in congratulating her for every bit of strength she can muster. On the days when its too much maybe send a little note of encouragement. Keep up the confidence, you can do it!

Chemo Woman rocks on but will complete her gig in Spring of 2009, but Lise will be rocking on for many years to come! (Insert applause here)

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