When Comfort Is Needed

Inappropriate Responses When Comfort Is Needed

When someone is having a bad day, anxiety attack, extremely anxious, these are things NOT to say or do:

· No response – You don’t care or not important enough to bother.
· Wow – Not interested. Especially when not followed up with questions.
· Change the topic – I didn’t want to deal with this.
· Start saying how YOU deal with it –  because your way is the only way, right?
· Random suggestions – Especially when it makes it clear you don’t know the person as well as you thought.

Instead, this is what you can you do to help comfort your friend, co-worker or family member.

· Listen – Listen to what’s being said. A solution isn’t always necessary. Sometimes just a listening ear.
· Ask questions – If you don’t understand ask for clarification before offering advice.
· What can I do to help? – If you don’t know what to do, ASK. If they don’t know, fall back to listen.
· Keep your word. – If you say you can do something they need doing, DO IT. There’s nothing worse than someone who doesn’t keep their word.
· Offer your assistance in practical ways. – If you’re invited over, take food, take it the trash, cook a dish, fix something broken in the house. Do something practical if you see them.

The key is to not think and act selfishly when someone comes to you or implies they need some sort of comfort. While a lot of people may bounce back quickly, there are many who don’t bounce back fast or at all. I don’t know what goes on in individuals minds, but I do know that I don’t want to be the cause they sink further, or worse case feel there there is no way out but death. So take a moment and consider how you can help them.

Tokyo Olympics 2020+1

The 2020+1 Summer Olympic Games are now over. I’ve had some time to let the excitement wear off a bit. Judging from I saw Tokyo did an amazing job hosting during this Covid pandemic. Now they are getting ready for the Paralympics. I rarely watch those, but I’m pretty excited to check those out too.

In my pre Olympic post I talked about my excitement of the games arriving. I did wonder how not having any fans would impact the excitement of the games. What I realized early, even during the opening ceremony, is the fact that no fans being there didn’t diminish the excitement at all. I still felt the excitement from the athletes and their family when they streamed them. Even though the atmosphere was different it still showed the excellence of the athletes around the world. They showed so some amazing talent.

One thing I did notice was the added drama. I’m sure there were always issues at the games. After all you have so many different personalities and customs. Still, this time there seemed to be extra drama. What do I mean by that? Where would I even start?

First we can start with after trials before the Olympics. Sha’Carri Richardson suspension. I won’t say anything about her suspension. She knew the consequences. She said it was a lapse in judgement. Done. Next we have Simone Biles. Amazing and talented gymnast. My only words are, let her be. Only she knows what’s best for her. She owes us nothing. Well said be her teammates. Next we have the athletes that lost and took the winners moment because they were not good enough to win. Give me a break. Every opponent you lose to is on drugs or it’s just not possible for a female to be faster than a male. Again, give me a break. Have good sportsmanship and don’t the shine from someone else because you were not good enough.

Other than stuff like that, I truly enjoyed the Olympics. I was slightly disappointed in skateboarding. The USA men’s track team proved uninspiring as well. The women’s USA and Jamaica’s track teams are always a treat to watch. How about Italy showing out on the track?!?! Let’s not forget the 14 year old Chinese diving champion. Can you say amazing?!?! Overall I loved and enjoyed the Olympics and all the firsts and broken records.

I’m already looking forward to Paris in three years and Los Angeles in seven years! I’m really hoping I can make the opening ceremony of the 2028 babes in LA. I’d love to hear what you enjoyed the most about the Olympics this year.

Friend To Associate

Just about five months ago I changed jobs. Went from retail to working from home. I’m so happy about that move. Not just because of Covid either, but my overall health. Less wear and tear on my body, especially my knees. Both of which I had replaced. I need them to last those 30 years!! I also learned more about myself and what I need.

One thing I’ve noticed is who I talk to and the conversations I have with them have changed. Some I talk to more. Others I barely talk to.  I’m not saying that we are ‘beefing’ or anything, we just drifted that quick. Others I have drawn closer too. When your focus changes, you notice other things that need to change. Nothing wrong with that. It’s called growth.

This also taught me many things. Some had to drop from friend status to associate status. It amazes how little I want to deal with some. Why? Have I changed? Have they changed? I know I’ve changed. I think my standards and what makes me thrive are more prevalent now. So, I find myself not tolerating anyone who doesn’t add to me and I add to them. It must go both ways.

I’ve noticed how some assume things about me. Sure you may assume I’m going to eat pizza, or have groceries delivered or text you before I call. Really that’s about all. Don’t make claims on my time by assuming I’m busy or not, or even I’m doing something or not. Granted I may read every day, but I do more than that. I watch the Olympics every day, but I do more. In other words, don’t assume, ask.

Some of the people I’ve increased my conversations with are truly amazing. We talk regularly and on many different topics. We encourage one another and be that shoulder to lean on (virtually of course) or the ear to vent to. We share our successes and failures.  Some of which moved from associate to friend.

When it comes to those I call friends, or even the ones that may want more there certain things that really show me who you are or what you’re about. There’s been so much going on over the past year and half since Covid broke out.  Everyone is concerned and we all have those moments when you just need the comforting words from a friend or family member. What you don’t need under any circumstance is someone making you feel worse. I want my friends to stay stay strong, so I would do my best to keep them up. Always remember, a solution isn’t always needed. Sometimes just a listening ear is enough.

It’s amazing how things can change in a short amount of time. There’s nothing wrong when you notice you’ve changed for the better. Sometimes we take a step backwards, but remember to find a way to take the next step forward. Sometimes we have to let go and leave people where they are as we take the next step on the ladder. 

Let It Go Unapologetically

There comes a point when you just have to let go of things and people that no longer fit into your life. We, people, myself included, try to make things work. It’s like fitting a square into a circle. You can’t, it just won’t work.

There has been many times when I’ve tried to make friendships last, or relationships grow. Only to find out it’s a waste of time and energy. I truly believe that if someone wanted to be a part of your life they will be. They’ll be there all the time, not just when it benefits them.

Time and time, I give way more than I get back, and I try harder than the other person. Guess what. Those days are way over. I’m done. No more throwing hints, offering suggestions, and giving too much. No, I don’t mind giving, but when it’s not appreciated, why waste my time.

All relationships require effort. Family, friends, love and more all take take effort on BOTH parts. It’s give and take on both ends. It requires understanding and listening. Remember not just the big things, but thev small things too. What do I mean? If you KNOW me, then you’ll know that I’m a Dallas Cowboys fan, but you’ll also know I don’t drink coffee. I had an associate that remembered how I write my name when I shorten it. That’s a little thing that was remembered, even though I NEVER bought it up in conversation.

I tell people all the time, if someone can’t see you in the daylight, they don’t deserve to see you in the night light. What do I mean? If they can’t be seen with you in public, then they don’t deserve to see you in private. This goes for EVERYONE. I had some female so called friends that started acting that way. I had to let go.

Everyone has quirks about them. I know I do. Some worse than others. I can hold a grudge and be petty with the best of them. Yes, I know, not the positive side of my personality. However, the grudge part has gotten better. I figured they were not worth the energy. The petty part, while it’s not positive, it can be fun. I do try to keep it light and fun, but sometimes, I can Queen Petty when pushed.

All I’m saying is sometimes you just have to let it go. Feed them the same old, dry and stale energy they tried to feed you. You are important enough and deserve it. Be unapologetically happy.

Summer Olympics 2020 in 2021

We are finally here! Another delay due to Covid. Still, I’m excited it’s finally here! This is the week of the start of the Summer Olympic Games. I’m so excited, you’d think I’d be there or personally knew someone competing. I don’t, but more on that later.

The Olympic games actually date back to 1896. I got into enjoying the games in 1988 right before we went to Germany. Even though I enjoy all of the games, my favorite part is the opening ceremony. The artistic openings that we see today started in 1912.

On my bucket list is to go to the opening ceremony of the Olympic games. So, if anyone would like to help me get to Paris in 2024 or Los Angeles in 2028, I’d be forever grateful.

As I stated before I’m really excited about the games. No, I’m not participating or supporting a specific athlete. So why am I so excited? It’s pretty simple, the energy is contagious. It gives off an amazing vibe. Yes I’m proud of all the athletes from every country that worked hard to get there.

For me, yes, I’ll always rock USA. However, if I see amazing talent somewhere else I give them their props too. Great is great. I’m looking forward to seeing new World records set, new talents shining through and just the overall love of sports.

Yes, the love of sports is what does it for me. While some of the events I may not watch year round, some I may not understand all the technical stuff, or even know the key players, but the excitement is enough most of the time. Don’t get me wrong, there are a few I won’t watch at all unless it’s the late night replays while I’m studying.

There are some new events that are added this year. Looking forward to seeing how they play out. I know this year will be different due to civic and the Covid restrictions. I’m hoping that them just being and the support of each other will help them.

I’m looking forward to each aspect of the games, but especially the opening ceremony. What are you most looking d forward to?

Leadership Series – Positivity

Definition of leadership: the action of leading a group of people or an organization.”different styles of leadership”

Most of my working career has been in retail. Mainly one company. Over the last five years I’ve noticed the major decline in effective leadership within this company and others that I’ve been watching. Then I look at other companies, some I worked for, others I was watching and saw an increase in proper leadership.

One of the things I know for sure about the leadership in the various locations is that it starts at the top. When you are leading your leaders, then you grow your team and your company. I’ve seen some small business excel through this pandemic just because they had some great leaders in place.

There are so many qualities that make great leaders shine. So I’ll do a series of blogs to discuss these. Today we’ll talk about positivity.  I come from an age where this quality is taught by words and action. Yes, it still applies today.

Being positive is key in any line of business. It can alter the way your business functions and grows. When you are being positive it helps your team be open to changes and new responsibilities that may arise. Remember, everyone doesn’t like change and may take a bit to adjust.

We all understand the concept that everyone is hired to do a job. Yes, we all get that. Still, showing appreciation will make them WANT to work even harder. “Thank Yous” are free. Show your team you appreciate the work they are doing. While you’re doing that, be respectful. The worst thing you can do is treat them like children, even if they act that way sometimes. I try to remember, how would I feel? I tell people all the time “what you will not do is yell at me like I’m your two year old.” I know I’ve caught myself a few times, it’s easy to do when you get upset. Just remember, that won’t get you the best results. That positive appreciation goes a long way to being successful.

One thing that the will help you show positivity is by showing enthusiasm. When you are enthusiastic about your work it’ll show and reflect in your team. Enthusiasm is contagious. You want your team to happy, after all, when they are happy your customers/clients will be happy. Being enthusiastic also helps when you have new products or a change in the way things are done. Don’t underestimate the power of enthusiasm.

Place others before yourself, for the good of the team. Yes, you are important too. However, in leadership, sometimes we have to step back and focus on those we are leading. In one of my locations I was always missing lunch or taking a really late lunch so they could take theirs and we still get the job done. Putting them first, they thought about me. We established a great working relationship. It was a nice circle of caring and respect.

Speaking of respect, respect is vital to establishing positivity. Without respect, you can forget about any positivity you may have had. When your team knows and can feel the respect you have for them, they will respect you too. Showing respect for each individual will boost the moral of your team. When you’re nasty to them and not showing any respect, you have the opposite effect. I’ve seen awesome leaders earn respect the right way and those that earn it by fear. Getting respect through fear will not boost your positivity rating within your team or company. Instead it will have the opposite effect. Earning respect by showing respect is the best way to keep a positive, growing team.

Always remember, as a leader you are the the energy of your business. We all understand the ups and downs of business. You win some, you lose some. Just know and understand that if you don’t display that positive energy, then your team will not either.

In the next article we will discuss empathy and how of an important role that plays in effective leadership.

Compliments

Some of you may know that I’m an independent consultant with Paparazzi Accessories. My business name is MM Butterfly Jewelry.

Our founders are always encouraging us to do better and be better. This is not just in business, but also our personal life. One way they do this is by issuing challenges. One such challenge was issued for this past weekend. We were asked to give 10 compliments over the weekend.

I think I did pretty good. At first I was thinking this would be tough with me at work and all. However, once I gave the first one, it was pretty easy. I realized that I did it more often than I thought.

What I noticed was that when I made sure my compliments were sincere and specific they made people feel good and it made them smile. On the flip side, when they smiled, I found myself smiling more. Even when I started to feel agitated I would find something positive and compliment them on it. Being an introvert sometimes makes it hard to speak to others and offer them a compliment. But, I did it. I feel about it too.

Have you given a compliment recently that was both sincere and specific? Why not make it a priority and see the difference in your day?

Biggest Regrets

We all have regrets in our life. If we didn’t, we’d be prefect. As you know, we are not perfect. Of course, some situations may sit heavier than others. Today I want to talk about one of mine.

One of my biggest, if not the biggest, regret was falling in love and getting engaged with whom I considered one of my best friends at the time. Yes, this ranks high on my list.

Why do I feel that this was one of my biggest regrets? No I don’t hate or regret that I loved him. I hate I lost my friend from a relationship that went bad. We were pretty close as friends. One of my best friends. He was one that knew me better than most people, at that time.

Maybe falling in love was the next natural course. I guess it was to be expected based off how close we were. How well did we know each other? You know me is to know I’m very picky with food, but I love food. He’s the only person outside of my immediate family that could order food for me and always get something I can eat. Yes, I trusted him to do that. He’s also one of the limited people I trust to fix me a drink and not have to watch him.

We knew things about each other our families didn’t know. Yea, that’s not too huge, but at the time it was. I guess we just didn’t know enough about each other. Where are we now? We are nowhere. Not even friends at this point. When I look back, I realized I would have much rather had his friendship today. I know I can’t guarantee we would be friends even if we hadn’t hooked up, but I like to think we would.

Even though I regret where things stand right now, I’m okay with it. After all, I’ve said it many times before, even then he set the bar, the original standard. A bar he no longer reaches, let alone the new standard. Am I mad about it? I use to be mad for a long time. Now I just use it a lesson and great memories when I feel nostalgic, which isn’t that often these days. I have my life to live, he has his.

Yes, this was one of greatest regrets throughout the years. Would I change things if I had a time machine? I don’t know. How much different would things have been? Who knows. Maybe the friendship would have dissolved on its by now. Having regrets is normal. Just make sure you don’t dwell on them. Learn from them and continue to move forward.

15 Facts About Me

Today I want to share some information or facts about me. If you know me, some stuff you may already know, others, you may not know yet. So let’s get started!

1. I’m a full fledged Dallas Cowboys fan. I don’t want to hear the mess. I’m all over it. You won’t change my mind.

2. I absolutely love to travel. I actually have a pretty long bucket list for traveling. Yes, I’m ready for Covid to be gone so I can get back to that bucket list.

3. Another absolute is the fact that I love to read. I can pretty much read a almost any genre. I’ve even jumped into some foreign language books. Yes they were translated.

4. Soul food…most of it is not my thing. Yea, I eat chicken, but a lot of things, most people eat on Thanksgiving I won’t eat. Why? It’s just one of those things.

5. I found that my taste buds have changed drastically over the last few years. One thing is the fact that I have never ever liked ginger ale in any brand. Now, I almost prefer that over my favorites, Sunkist or Fanta orange.

6. Most of the time I’m not a crier. Normally if cry then I’m ready to fight someone. Well now since I’ve had Covid, some things have changed. I find myself just crying at random times. I don’t be mad or depressed, I just start crying. It’s the craziest thing. That hormone imbalance sucks.

7. I absolutely love building my family tree. It actually excites me when I find connections in the family. Will I meet everyone, probably not. Will I contact everyone, probably not. I’m excited to see how far back I can go. Who wants to help? Taking all offers and tips.

8. Most people close to me know I love photography. I’ve been taking pictures since I was in middle school. I have most of my first pictures from Germany. That’s where it really began. I believe future generations would enjoy seeing more than just hearing about the past.

9. Call me crazy, but I like to see an actual surgery of any surgery I’m about to undergo. I’ve had 5 surgeries and I took the time to watch each surgery before hand. I just like to see how it’s done.

10. I don’t like shopping at all. Shopping for gadgets is decent enough, but I try to avoid that too. With my gadgets I did all my research and then just go buy. With everything else I hope it can just be ordered online. Even better if I can get it delivered.

11. Don’t hate me for this next one. I’ve never wanted to physically have a kid. Like, actually going through the pregnancy part. However, I wouldn’t have minded adopting one. I love kids, just didn’t want to carry one. If I had got pregnant I would have had it, but I was never trying to have one.

12. I love to teach and train. At one point in middle school and early in high school I thought I was going to be a teacher one day. That didn’t happen. I fell in love with with accounting and took that instead. Now, Wal-Mart has provided the opportunity to both teach and train in various supervisor roles throughout the years. That’s one thing I always tried to pride myself in regardless of what others thought.

13. I absolutely love watching a storm. I don’t want to be in it or see others hurt in a storm. To sit and watch a storm rage gives me life anytime I can relax and watch it.

14. I hate laziness. It’s okay to have lazy moments, but to just be lazy all the time is not cool. I understand we get tired, exhausted, and overwhelmed at times. We will have those moments. We still have to push through. If you want something, work for it. Don’t try to take the lazy way out. Work for it.

15. I like to collect books, pens and movies. My family think I collect everything. That’s false. I absolutely love books, pens (I write) and movies.

Those are just 15 random facts about me. How many of those facts did you know about me?