Silver lining?

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What has a kitchen timer got to do with silver linings you may ask?
It all began with my doctor’s suggestion that I get one to help me remember to take a few minutes walking break from sitting at my desk every twenty minutes to help an inflamed nerve heal.
First not so silver lining, (more a black storm cloud on my part lol!)it ticked so loud it was a constant distraction grrr. (should have bought a different one.)I did find after the initial frustration though that my world was expanding. I’d been tending to spend most of my “at home time” in my bedroom for convenience sake, generally on the laptop at my desk, or laying on my bed with a good book to “chill” (confessions lol!.) Doc said to walk during these breaks so I became re acquainted with the neglected parts of my apartment (the living-room for example!)
Thinking hmm… I have such a nice room but I hardly ever use it, I decided to move one laptop there (yes I had two in my bedroom – embarrassing!)Next step I figured why not move my work stuff with it and keep my bedroom for rest and devotional reading etc. You are probably laughing by now! (First de stress rule – bedrooms should not be work places – but its so convenient!lol!)
Well to cut my story short, the timer went down also. Having my life cut into 20 min. segments has been a life changer. I realised just how much time I can “accidentally” spend on social media, how I must have been sometimes 3 or more hours straight at the computer when a writing bug hit (no wonder my leg was complaining!)I became far more aware of how I used my time. Many of those little jobs on my to do list got done during my breaks and amazingly I’ve been more inspired to write rather than less (even with the pesky timer.)Today my daughter helped me rig my computer to my TV so I can watch net flix on the big screen (OK, OK, I was laying in bed watching on the laptop lol!) I feel like I opened a bunch of windows and my life is expanding instead of contracting.
So my message for today? Get a timer, it’s life changing!

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Thoughts on Cities While in Guangzhou.

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from July 2014 (written 2011)

Song Bird Songs

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(Actually I love Guangzhou and its people, but these are aspects of many fast growing cities)

What lies within these concrete walls imprisoned in its tiny boxes? Souls that once worked  beneath brilliant skies, cut homes from stone or wood and, surrounded by nature, slept vivid dreams of peace. Now all is polluted. The air, the walls, the couch, the bed, send toxic fumes into their heads … repose of soul is hard to find.

Trailing vines dotted with flowers adorn overwhelming tangles of concrete climbing every pillar and hanging in verdant curtains in attempts to incorporate the inborn Chinese love of nature and beauty as spiraling roads obstruct the skyline and towering pollution dims their lines.

Men crawl like teaming ants. I observe them as they scurry to and fro engaged forever in a frantic rush to pile up goods for a winter that may destroy them all. Fighting…

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Is Your Life a bit of a mess?

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When I went to study art I was shocked when the first thing they did was confiscate our pencils and stand us in front of a giant paper with only a nib pen and a pot of ink ( they did supply white paint for when things got too muddled to even see the lines.) The life model then appeared and took a complex reclining pose.
Their reasoning they explained was they didn’t want us to make the pretty little pictures we were used to. They wanted us to “think big and bold, to make decisions (and mistakes). A beautiful picture they explained meant you learnt nothing! A messy sheet was evidence of learning. They heartily applauded our hatched black lines sprawled across the muddied grey of white paint mixed with black mistakes. I had to admit at the end the final creations said so much more than our usual safe renderings.
I have come to apply the same principals to life. It’s those messy times, full of mistakes and attempts to “white wash” with their ugly edges and smudged lines that are some of our most fruitful. We find our vision enlarged, our concepts heightened and our humanity deepened. So don’t worry if you hit a “messy patch” continue to “think big”, to do your best to get it right and be honest when you get it wrong. Your world may not look pretty right then but heh you’re on a learning curve!