Saturday, June 8, 2013

Rumors at Work...about work!

Musing this week about corporate changes. I've joined an organization that I know will have constant change. Change has been a constant in every organization that has employed me. The changes included mergers and acquisitions both large and small, company name changes, strategy changes, product changes, leadership changes, layoffs of friends and co-workers on small and large scale, policy changes and more. The worst was the death of the founder and CEO at a small business. One situation included knowing that my boyfriend at the time was on the list of people to be terminated. The information came to me only as a result of my position. I quickly decided that telling him would not change the situation nor help him and would absolutely be unethical. I could not be sure how either decision would impact our relationship but later he confirmed that he felt I had done the right thing. I also realized that I personally would not want to find out that a friend had more info about my employment before I had it myself. Those early experiences may be why I have become so used to change that it seems like I can feel it coming. In fact, recently just minutes after thinking of this very topic a corporate email went out about changes within the leadership of my new organization. I've only been employed two weeks, work remotely and have no connections internally or any other obvious reason to be thinking about this topic. But it's clear this isn't a skill unique to me; many are able to sense when changes are afoot whether they are of an exciting nature or a difficult ones. To me it feels like the air changes. Maybe it is that air that gets the rumor mill going and in the absence of information people often just make things up. My advice to people that hearing rumors at work about change is to listen well, say little and do nothing. I won't tell you not to gather information when possible but stay professional and remember that often what you hear has no bearing on what is really going on behind the scenes. Do not let unfounded rumors drive your thoughts and behaviors. Whatever is happening, it will come out eventually and you will survive better if you keep your focus on your assigned duties while mentally preparing yourself for any possibility.

Part of it killed me

I'm sitting in a hotel room on a brief respite from a month-long software training course, waiting for my man to get here. I have a new job - full-time, permanent and in my chosen field for the first time in 2.5 years. I have a real and healthy relationship for the first time in...ever? Both are amazing. I'm getting paid to learn. I am working with some of the most top notch people I have ever met. I am dating a man that comes inside the airport to pick me up, set the table in our hotel room last night and poured me a glass of wine, tells me I am beautiful and seems like a dream and I know I am blessed. But the very difficult events of the last four years: a lost job, the death of two people I loved, a great deal of time away from home, personal mistakes, and particularly several painful family issues are also a blessing. The difficulties are blessings not only because they made me stronger, but also because it forced me to recognize my weaknesses. The happy changes in my life are most surely a result of changes brought about by gaining that knowledge.

Monday, January 9, 2012

What We Are Eating...

I have Korean Students living with me for the last few months.  We share our food and culture.

For Christmas, Jace made Tteokbokki, a delightfully spicy Korean dish featuring sticky rice cakes.

Here's a terrific video showing how to make Tteokbokki with a recipe similar to what he prepared:

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Google Search Terms:Female

I just accidentally discovered something about google search that gives me pause for thought.
If you use a search term that includes the word "female" without the quotation marks,  it will also give you results with the word "girl" in it.

I guess it could be helpful at times, but would it also be helpful to creepy perverts?  They could say they were looking for adult material and Google is responsible for the underage material that appeared on their screen.

I think that's a bit off...

Friday, December 30, 2011


The experiences of the last half year have me really thinking about my life.  The good parts, the great parts and the parts that are just unbelievable.  Now that I'm finally home for a stretch I'm regaining, in fits and spurts, my motivation, my creativity, my zest and appreciation for life.

It seems I'm standing on the edge of the cliff, deciding if I will dive off into the beautiful blue waters below and live, really live the life I want.  Or if I will retreat back down the path into boring safety, boring safety.

This quote, from Thucydides, sums up all my aspirations and concern in one sentence:
  "Be convinced that to be happy means to be free and that to be free means to be brave."

I crave a freedom that is hardly unique- basically, the freedom to do what I like:  to travel, to live in one place yet frequently spend time in another, to work creatively with a team without feeling overly bound; ie, working because I love it instead for the salary. It's a freedom that requires funding and will also require a great deal of bravery.

We'll see.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Holidays & Rumors

Is there something about the Holidays that makes gossip more prevalent?  Within the last few weeks RumorsAboutMe is getting more hits than usual from people searching for advice on handling rumors about themselves.

It's a certainty that Holidays are tough for many.  If someone is already having a hard time, often the pressure of the Holiday rush and the stress of dealing with family relationships only causes more unhappiness.  It stands to reason that unhappy people engage in unhealthy behaviors at a greater frequency and that could account for an increase in the spreading of rumors.

People also tend to catch up with folks they haven't seen in a while around Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years.  That creates more opportunity for gossip, especially among people that maybe don't have much to say to one another in the first place.

If you are one of those people searching answers about why you are being subjected to gossip, take comfort in knowing - it's not about you.  It's about the person whose mouth is moving and the one whose ears are open to it.

As long as the nonsense (or even truths) they are crowing about won't harm your marriage, your livelihood or your children, bear it with dignity by pretending you don't have a clue it's even happening.  This too shall pass.

More on Rumors:  Rumors About You

One Small Space

When struggling with chaos I've found that creating one small place of sanity, tranquility and perfection brings hope.

That small space might be physical - a place in my messy home that is always kept clean and perfectly organized.
It could be mental - an area of my minds that knows peace, some thought to think of that only brings calmness
and positive feelings.
It may be emotional - the friendship of one person in the world that I know for certain loves and appreciates me without conditions and of whom I only have positive feelings.  For someone else that might even be a pet.

Once that small space is established I derive nourishment and clarity just from tending to it, looking at it, or just thinking about it.  It brings comfort to realize that if one small space in my world can be sane, that space be made to grow.

Being home again after months away is overwhelming.  There is so much to do that I feel frozen and keep searching for ways to distract myself from what needs to be done, probably out of fear that I can't or won't do it.  Everywhere I look there is a daunting task; a mess to be cleaned up, a broken thing that needs to be fixed, months worth of mail to open.

My goal for today was to create that one small space to start the ball rolling toward regaining a sense of peace. My small space was an area in my house near a bay window.  Usually one of the best features of my home, that space had been cluttered for several months with things for a yard sale that never happened.  With help from a friend, we cleared it out within 20 minutes, vacuumed and decorated it for Christmas.  Gazing at it now I know that the seemingly monumental tasks on my list can be broken into smaller ones that I know can be accomplished.

If you are struggling or overwhelmed with life, consider creating a small space for yourself- physical, mental or emotional, as a place you can turn to regain tranquility when other areas of your existence feel like to much to handle.