November 20, 2012

When it’s Time to Reinvent Yourself…

…go all the way.

I’m convinced that no matter how much we love something and we feel fulfilled, sometimes you just need a change. Not because we don’t like it anymore, but because we need to make sure we stay on our toes. We need to channel our ability to stay resourceful and challenge our creativity. Most importantly, we need to eliminate the possibilities of settling so that we give ourselves the opportunity to be better than we were yesterday.

Despite my best efforts to always chase my dreams, and take risks I must admit I have been settling. Not with my job or my personal needs, but with my business. Yes, I’ve taken the leap to become a full-time freelance writer but I was still playing it safe. From my business name, “Writing by Terri”, to the small businesses and local magazines I would chase for a shot at the dream, I wasn’t going all the way. That’s why I decided to change my business name from Writing by Terri to Terrific Words (something I’ve always wanted to do.) I know what you’re thinking. “But Terri, this blog has been named Terrific Words forever!” The truth is, I’ve been scared. I’ve been meaning to change everything to “Terrific Words” but I got nervous half way.

It wasn’t until I was reminded of my favorite phrase, “Don’t do anything half way unless you are willing to be half happy,” that it was time for a change. I needed to take that plunge. Otherwise, I wasn’t doing any favors to myself other than merely selling myself short.

So on that note, I present you with my new business site, http://www.TerrificWords.com and my new “self.”

It was hard to take the leap, but so worth it. Sometimes the worst thing you could ever do is stop yourself from going all the way. Don’t waste another moment of time. The time is now.

In what ways, have you reinvented yourself? Also visit my new site and let me know what you think! While you’re at it check out my ebook and write a review if you feel so inclined! 

TERRIfic Quip: I know I already mentioned it in the post, but I think it’s so good that it’s worth repeating. Don’t do anything half way unless you’re willing to be half happy. 

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November 13, 2012

5 Life Lessons I Learned from Sharing an Office with a Recent College Grad

“I just graduated in May.” They’re the last words you want to hear upon learning your new business quarters consists of sharing Five Life lessons I learned from sharing an office with a recent college gradan office; especially when you consider yourself a well-respected mid-level professional years out of college. I thought “Is this what I’ve been reduced to?” Bumping heads with the clueless but quirky college grad eager to dive head first into the business world with no idea of how to do it wasn’t exactly in my life plan. But somehow, it was the situation I fell into and had no choice but to deal with. Much to my surprise I learned more than the newest flavor of beers and the latest dance craze to break out at frat parties. I learned a few life lessons as well. Here are six facts of life I managed to stumble upon while maintaining my sanity in office space shared with the recent grad.

1. Have a support system

I never knew how awesome it was to have a support system within the office. Whenever I was unsure of something, facing computer issues, etc. there was no need to bother the higher-ups. She was right there to offer some help if needed. And the same applied to her. We had each others back whether we were running late, made a slight mistake or just plain confused. It made the work environment so much more pleasurable and less stressful. It turns out having a support system in all facets of life including the professional world is much needed but much less appreciated by most.

2. Live a little

While sitting opposite of this young and fiery person, I had the pleasure of vicariously living through her. I heard stories of musings with homeless people, parties during homecoming and alumni weekend, and spontaneous but whimsical dates with her equally young and entertaining boyfriend. While I sat there in awe of every intriguing detail of her care free life I couldn’t help but feel a bit jealous that I couldn’t live a life as exciting and spontaneous as hers. After all, I was no longer a “recent” college graduate. I was a young woman well into the business world trying to make a name for herself. Then I realized she was in the process of building her name as well. Why should she be able to have a life while I slaved away for the sake of making a living and carrying myself as a professional? There was no reason why I couldn’t continue to live a life worth getting excited about while maintaining a professional edge. After all, I was still young and living in the moment is what life is all about.

3. Worry only about yourself

In an economy such as this you always hear about all the competition out there, how your career isn’t secure and a million people want your job. Well, sharing an office with a young and vibrant recent grad made me well aware of that job insecurity and competition. I was in awe of her quick mindedness and ability to teach herself tasks in a matter of minutes. And of course, sharing an office with her made my shortcomings even more apparent. It was like I was in high school all over again vying for the coveted seat at the popular table with all the cool girls who batted their eyelashes at the football players better than me. Then I remembered those girls in high school didn’t care and that bright eyed recent grad sitting across the desk didn’t care about me either. As long as I completed my work in a timely manner and exceeded expectation there was no problem. Competition will always be there, but the only competition that mattered at the moment was the one within myself. I could only be better than I was yesterday. There was no reason for me to try to beat out her.

4. Dress the part of you

I admit it. I was a little too afraid to be myself in fear of not fitting in to the cookie cutter mold of the professional world. So instead I was overly nervous about my big afro-like hair taking over the work space and toned down my personality when picking out my wardrobe. But every morning when I saw my carefree office mate roll into  work with her funky, artsy but office appropriate work attire I realized I was worried for nothing. Sure I couldn’t roll out of bed and head out in my pajamas anymore like the college days. But I still had the option to be me, and let me personality shine whether it be through my wardrobe, hairstyle or demeanor. As long as it was office appropriate I was in the clear.

5. Have a little sense of entitlement

For some reason, when leaving college, those young grads have this idea that the world is owed to them because they’re equipped with a new and freshly embossed degree. Never mind the other millions of people who also have a degree and more experience. A shiny new office space, with an amazing salary and two months paid vacation should just be handed to them because they’re equipped with newfound knowledge from an accredited institution. *You may roll your eyes here*   It seems as though they forget about working their way up and gaining experience. As annoying as this way of thinking is, (when being around it all the time it does get annoying) that sense of entitlement isn’t always a bad thing. You may be young. You may be less experienced, but that doesn’t mean you can forget about your worth. This poor economy has scared many people into settling for less. However, I had the pleasure of re-learning from my less-experienced office mate that the job climate does not take away from your knowledge and accomplishments. It does not diminish your value. Nor does it mean you hide all that makes you awesome. If anything, she reaffirmed the need to continue have big goals and an even bigger will to succeed and get what you deserve. Make your credentials known and expect to be recognized for it.

Who knew the beer pong champion, 5 star excuse maker, and expert drunk dialer could be so insightful…
What valuable life lessons have you taken from the office?
TERRIfic Quip: If you judge people you have no time to love them.
November 6, 2012

5 Types of People You’ll Encounter on Your Way to the Top

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

For the last few weeks, I’ve given you several reasons why you should stop everything and just follow your dreams. I’ve also let you in on ways to stay happy. But what I haven’t told you about are the types of people you’ll run into while chasing your dreams and leading that happy life. Some of them are good people. Some of them are bad people. And some of those people are just there. Regardless of what role they play, you should be aware of them. That way when you do cross paths you’ll be prepared. Here are the five types of people you will encounter on the way to your top…

  • The Parent – Ok, so you know the song “Parents Just Don’t Understand”?  Well, the same concept applies when you are in the process of dream catching. Parents mean well and most of them support you in whatever you set your heart on (as long as it’s legal.)  But when you tell them you are taking a leap of faith to pursue your passion, the amount of support you expected may not be there. It’s not because they don’t believe in you. It’s just because they are scared for you and their natural instinct is to protect you from the unknown. They only want what’s best for you. The best way to deal is to reassure them of your skill and drive. Otherwise, it may be best to ignore the “words of concern” to keep your insanity. You may also want to keep some major hardships to yourself. After all, you wouldn’t want to put your loved ones in a coma caused by an unnecessary overload of worry.

* This person isn’t always an actual parent. It may be someone who is like a parental figure.

  • The Clueless One – So this person is clueless but doesn’t know it. They’re the ones that keep pulling facts out of their butt’s in regards to your new endeavor and spewing them at you whether they’re welcomed or not. No one knows where these statistics are coming from but it doesn’t stop you from hearing it. Sometimes these tidbits of advice, statistics, and facts of life are completely baseless and sometimes theres some truth to them. Take it with a grain of salt and/or take it upon yourself to do a little fact checking just to save face. I’m going to assume that this one means well. They just happen to be well, umm… clueless.
  • The Naysayer – Whether or not you’re a dream catcher on the way to your top or an average Joe just doing what he can to get by we’ve all run into this one before. It’s the never have anything good to say, down on life, can’t catch a break, poor soul that always has something negative to say. You could have just landed the tv role of your dreams or won the lottery and this person will still find a way to rain on your parade. My guess is this person saw their dreams crash and burn in a horrific death and wants to spare you the pain. The other possibility is that they’re afraid you’ll actually do what you say you’ll do. So how do you deal with them? You know what they say… Never get talked out of your dreams by someone who gave up on their own. 
  • The Impatient – They stand by your side, and scrimp and save with you when you explain you can’t afford to do something. They are completely supportive of you but now they are tired. Tired of the skipped dates, tired of the sacrifices and tired of staying in all the time. Chances are they support your ambition, but don’t understand the time and sacrifice it takes to accomplish your goals. As long as your dreams don’t cut in to their social time and their selfish needs they’ve got your back. Otherwise, beware of the whiner. The truth is most people don’t understand how demanding dream catching is. The probably never well unless they are doing it themselves. I say make new friends with similar goals. But that doesn’t mean you have to let go of the ones you already have. After all, it could get pretty lonely at the top so make sure you keep your support system close.
  • Miss Done it All – This girl is absolutely amazing. She’s been there. Done that. Got the t-shirts and the awards to prove it. She’s been where you are and is a wealth of knowledge. More specifically, she IS who you want to be.  When you get near her, you go into a shock. Not because she’s scary, but because you can’t believe you have actually come this close to royalty. So what do you do? Don’t let the moment slip away. It’s the perfect time to channel her genius. Flatter her and find out what steps she took to make it to the promise land.  But don’t be overly intrusive and remember to say thank you!

What other types of people have you encountered on your way to the top and  how did you deal with them?

TERRIfic Quips:  The more you love your decisions, the less you need other people to love them.

October 30, 2012

15 Reasons Why You Should Pursue Your Dreams

So not but a few days ago, I was welcomed with a burst of inspiration. I wanted to write a column. Not just any column. A column about culture and education that will be syndicated in newspapers around the country. I’d be the Carrie Bradshaw of my generation, only I’d have columns and books about things of substance. And than it dawned on me. Carrie Bradshaw is a fictional character. What makes me think my life and dreams would pan out to be anywhere close to the made-up life of Carrie Bradshaw? I don’t have the wardrobe. I don’t have the resources she has access to. And I sure as hell don’t have the money she has. The reasons why it couldn’t happen were endless. But then I remembered my favorite words. The words I mention on this blog post repeatedly. You can’t fail if you don’t quit. 

Time and time again, our minds are filled with inspirations and goals that could change our lives forever. Then shortly after, our minds are then clouded with doubt from within ourselves and those around us. Each doubt that pops into your mind is another reason why you should let your dreams die and go on with your life as though nothing happened. That would be the easy thing to do. Just give up. The hard thing to do is to pursue it like your life depended on it. Ignore every doubt that pops into your mind because for every doubt you can come up with there is an even better reason for you to follow your hearts desire. Here’s 15 to get you started.

1. You just might succeed.

2. If it’s something you want, you will find a way to make it happen.

3. Not trying is worse than wondering “what if” for the rest of your life.

4. You are enough. You have enough. You do enough.

5. It’s never to late to be what you might’ve been.

6. You’re already struggling. You might as well take the leap and struggle for something you love.

7. You’re going to be really pissed if someone takes your idea and runs with it.

8. If anything, the experience will at least make you wiser.

9. You’ll have a cool story to tell your kids in the future.

10. It’s only impossible because you said it is.

11. You’ll learn a lot about yourself in the process.

12. You’re smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

13. It will give you great material for a book one day.

14. Excuses are never tolerated.

15. There is always hope.

October 23, 2012

The Reason Why I Love Rejection (And Why You May Start Loving it Too)

“Thanks but no thanks.”

Image courtesy of: Freedigitalphotos.net

“I’ll pass.”

“Not interested.”

“It’s not right for us.”

These are all words I hear on almost a daily basis. Most people will cringe and sink further into their seat if they saw these in their inbox everyday. But I love every single minute of it. It’s not because my favorite word is no. (It’s not.) And it’s not because I enjoy failure. It’s because every single one of those rejections I stumble upon in my email is a little glimmer of hope that I am getting somewhere.

Let me explain. I work in the media. A majority of my day is spent sending out cold pitches to magazine editors who don’t even know I exist. This happens to be the routine of millions of other freelance writers around the world.  That means editors get hundreds of emails sent to their inbox on a daily basis by people they don’t know. Chances of them actually opening my email are slim. But every once in a while a miracle happens and an editor glides her coveted mouse over to my email and opens it. Now most of the time, I get nothing in return. If I’m really lucky I’ll get a glowing response that says, “I love your idea. How about writing for the upcoming mother’s day issue for $2.00 per word.” But most of the time, if I get any response at all it’s, “I’m not interested at this time, but thanks for thinking of us.”

Of course, I would have preferred to get the uplifting response offering me an assignment. But I’ll take the rejection email too. Although it’s not as obvious, the “bad” email means something too. It means that out of the hundreds of emails the editor got she thought my email pitch was worth opening. And even though the pitch wasn’t worthy of publication she did think it was worth a response. She could of easily deleted my email and went on her way without giving me a second thought. But to that editor, I was more than just an anonymous girl who sent her a failed pitch. I was a girl that took a chance and at least deserved a response. It was proof that I must have done something right. More importantly that rejection was the beginning of a new relationship.

See, I knew that if that coveted editor read and responded to one email the chances of her reading and responding to another one of my emails was heightened. So rather than taking that rejection as a sign of defeat and failure, I flip it and turn it into the beautiful beginning of a new relationship and a dream. It’s my cue to start pitching and emailing that editor as though my life depended it. Even more importantly, it’s a sign to not give up. And nearly 100% of the time, those signs are correct.

It was a few months ago that I got my my rejection letter from an editor at REDBOOK magazine. I didn’t give up hope. I continued to forge a relationship with that editor through consistent emails and conversations. And then one day, a dream came true. I was offered my dream assignment and my article was featured in the August issue of REDBOOK.

Just goes to show you that my favorite words to live by are true. You can’t fail if you don’t quit. And to think it all started with a rejection letter…

When was rejection a sign of better  things to come in your career or personal life?

TERRIfic Quip: When things are falling apart they may actually be falling into place.

October 16, 2012

What You Can Learn from Your 6-year old Self

My parents taught me not to judge a book by it’s cover. As a child, I certainly took that life lesson to heart. When I was six years old, I made friends with everyone. Age, religion, race, social status, sexuality just didn’t matter to me. Chances are it didn’t matter to most six years old. That’s why it shouldn’t have come of much surprise when I made friends with an eleven year old girl who lived in the same complex I did. Not only was she five years older than me, but she was deaf and mute. (That’s where the surprise came in) It didn’t matter that we didn’t understand each other or that we were years apart. All we saw in each other was a playmate and a best friend.

Of course, there were those who probably thought that it was impossible to build a strong a relationship when you couldn’t even communicate with each other. After all, she was a deaf eleven year old and I was a six year old that didn’t understand sign language. But that didn’t matter. We showed each other the world. She taught me how to do cartwheels and things she learned in gymnastics and I taught her how to play card games and things I did in Girl Scouts. We were inseparable and had a strong bond.

As we grew older we started to drift apart and then she moved away. However, our frienship hasn’t been forgotten. I often wonder how she is and look back in awe at how close we had become. Even though, I was the one in the middle of this fairytale friendship it was like one of the eight wonders of the world to me. For some reason, I couldn’t get over the fact that all we had in common was our address and the shared desire to play. I couldn’t help but ask myself, why everything can’t be that simple. And then I realized everything is that simple. Oddly enough, it took my reflecting on my life as a six year old to realize that.

There will always be obstacles, differences, and hardships. However, those obstacles and differences always seem much bigger than they are because we make it that way. Rather than focusing on the obsolete, it would be wise to focus on the greater good. There will always be a solution. And there will always be a way out of the tunnel. If not, there really isn’t a problem. So stop stressing yourself out. And stop making a problem bigger than it is. Chances are there is a simpler route and a solution but you’ve blinded yourself from it.

It would have been easy for my childhood friend and I to refuse to cross pasts because of our obvious dissimiarities. We could have chosen to predict unforseen problems with building a friendship based on something as shallow as playtime and avoided it. However, we chose to build something meaningful based on our shared common ground. It’s a premise that can and should be applied to romantic relationships, professional relationships, family life, etc.

Rather than dissect every situation until there is nothing left, we should accept every situation for what it is and make the best of it. After all, that’s how friendship is made and opportunities are seized. It’s hard to believe that it was a life lesson I understand at such a young age, but took twenty years for me to grasp. Turns out the wide-eyed and innocent children know a little more than we think… Silence the voices and the differences and just let your inner child speak.

What life lessons have you learned from your youth?

TERRIfic Quip: Everything is simple. We make it difficult.

October 9, 2012

Be all that can you can be… on Facebook

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Ok, I’m sure you’ve seen all the reports by now. “Facebook leads to depression.”  “Facebook is used to steal your identity.”  “Facebook can stop you from landing that job.” “Facebook can break up a marriage.”

Yes, all of those can be true… if you act like an idiot on Facebook. Other than those fine perils if I act out of stupidity, Facebook has reaffirmed that I can be anything that I put my mind to. Let’s reflect for a moment. How often do you see a status that totally doesn’t align with the person you know him or her to be in real life? We all know that person who  knows nothing about science but feels the need to update their status about the weather every hour on the hour as though they are a meteorologist. Or you’ve probably had  a run in more than once with someone who is consistently cursing, sleeping around, and always drunk but feels it’s necessary to quote bible phrases as a status everyday. Wannabe preacher? Or what about the girl you went to school with who has no fashion or beauty sense and never wore heels a day in her life, but constantly uploads pictures of herself everyday as though she is a hot new model?

Naturally, when people see things like this on Facebook a few things come to mind. They sometimes run along the lines of poser, wannabe, and faker. I  admit I used to be one of them until I realized those so called “fakers” had the right idea… sometimes.

Basically, I’ve learned that in order to accomplish something you have to believe you can do it. Much more than that you need to see yourself doing it. Fake it till you make it. It’s what we do when you pad your resume a bit when you’re trying to get that dream job. It’s what you did when you created that Youtube account to document all the songs you’ve written and composed througout the years. And it’s what we do when you attempt to win contests in which you have to demonstrate your expertise in a certain subject through a personal essay.  It turns out that’s what those posers on Facebook are doing. They’re faking it till they make it. They just happened to use a slightly more annoying approach. (I’m not going to lie. It still does annoy me from time to time.)

How often have you heard the phrase, “Dress for the job you want, not for the job you have.”? Or what about my all time favorite from Sister Act 2 “If you wake up in the morning and you can’t think of anything but being a singer, you’re a singer.” And we all know that for some on Facebook, the first thing they think to do is update their status with whatever prolific thing that comes to their mind. No, it doesn’t always mean that they have nothing better to do with their lives other than give their “friends” up-to-the-minute weather reports. It could mean that they are taking Whoopi Goldberg’s advice to heart and realizing that they are indeed a meteorologist, motivational speaker, etc.

Those “wise” Facebook friends are simply taking control of their own futures and doing everything in their power to turn their aspirations into reality. Perhaps, we can learn a lot from them… If all their annoying updates, hypocritical statuses, and plagiarizing song lyrics simply means that they are “dressing the part” and/or “faking it till they make it”, I can certainly like that.

In what ways do you fake it till you make it? Has Facebook helped you become all that you are capable of?

TERRIfic Quips: Always wear your invisible crown.

October 2, 2012

11 Free and Quirky Ways to be Happier

Let’s face it- Life is tough. If it’s not one thing it’s another. From the stress of figuring out meals for the week to wondering how you are going to pay bills it seems as though the troubles are never ending.  That’s why it’s important to laugh anyway. The question is how do you find a way to smile in even the bleakest moments?

Luckily, there are tons of quirky and off beat ways to bring sunshine to your life. And I’m not talking about the typical remedies like take a shower or going shopping. I’m talking about off the wall things such as keeping Play-Doh in your purse for spur of the moment playtime. Or having a rainbow colored umbrella to make you smile on even the rainiest of days.

If you couldn’t tell by now, I’m a pretty optimistic and perky person. The below list is the reason why…

1. Chew multicolored bubble gum.

If you are like me, you enjoy satisfying your taste buds with a mouthwatering piece of gum. Not only does that one stick of gum fight bad breathe and temporarily satisfy hunger, it occupies your mind and your mouth when dealing with stressful moments. Think about it. You can’t possibly scream bloody murder at the temp who misfiled all of your important documents when you are too busy chomping away at your chewy delight. You’d be way too enthralled savoring the sticky goodness in your mouth as you chew away. Imagine how much better it would be if you were chewing a bright purple or pink wad of gum and precisely blowing perfectly sculpted  bubble. Dubble Bubble comes to mind…

2. Keep some bubbles in the glove compartment of your car.

Nothing tops pulling up to your business meeting, checking the clock to find out that you are 30 minutes early and realizing you have time to blow some bubbles out the window to kill some time while you wait. Not only will it occupy your mind, but it will relax you for that meeting you are already well-prepared for.

3. Watch Spongebob when you can

To those down and out on life, Spongebob Squarepants is nothing more than a waste of time and excuse to avoid growing up. But to the young at heart, lively, and optimistic its the opportunity to escape into childhood again and leave the problems of the “real world” behind. Besides, every once in a while you deserve to escape from the perils  of everyday life. Plus, you can learn a valuable life lesson from Spongebob. Ever notice how, Squidward, the pessimistic, lazy, and decietful character always ends up with the shorthand of the stick or injured somehow? Meanwhile, the happy-go-lucky Spongebob is consistently faced with new eventful opportunities. That’s no coincidence. It’s merely proof that if you change your thoughts you can change your world. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking.

4. Sing your favorite song even when in public.

There’s a reason why they say music makes great therapy. Besides, if you have a terrible voice it should put your mind at ease knowing that your life can’t get any worse than your singing. It may even help solve your problems. Ever heard of William Hung?

5. Have Play-Doh in your purse at all times

You can never feel depressed for too long when you go digging through your purse or your pocket and you find a promising bottle of Play-Doh just waiting to be molded into something delightful.

6. Purchase a rainbow colored umbrella

While Starbursts wants you to taste the rainbow, I want you to see the rainbow… at all times. That’s why I suggest you carry around a brightly colored rainbow umbrella on those rainy days. Even though the world around you is damp and gloomy, there’s no reason why your world  can’t resemble that of a beach ball. Seeing the brightly colored shield will certainly help keep your spirits up. Plus, it will prove to be helpful when trying to get the attention of a cab driver in the city.

Carry a rainbow umbrella on a rainy day to brighten your world

7. Hide Post-It notes in random places

For when you need a little pick-me-up, I suggest writing motivational, laugh worthy, and just plain heart tingling notes to yourself. You’ll thank yourself when you find one hiding amongst your belongs at the moment when you’re convinced it couldn’t get any worse.

8. Play with your food

If you gotta eat, you might as well have fun with it. Experiment, taste test and create something new. I bet you’re dying to know whether or not that cayenne pepper will mix well with your latest creation. Try it… You have nothing to lose.

9. Get to know a stranger

Remember when you were a little kid and social status, family make-up, religion and appearance didn’t matter. You never saw any of those things. All you saw was a playmate. As adults, we over think everything. Of course, that leads to people becoming antisocial, judgemental and sometimes lonely. I challenge you to ignore the details and get to know a stranger. If you take the train into the city at the same time every morning, chat up a few familiar faces. If you are a regular at the local coffee shop take a moment to thank the barista for her hardwork and find out if she’s saving for somethng special. Sometimes, it’s the simple smile from a stranger and cordial conversation that makes all the difference in your life and theirs. After all, that’s how friendships are made.

10. Look at the shapes in the clouds

There is nothing more relaxing and thought awakening than challenging your imagination to see how many shapes you can see. Suddenly, there is nothing else in the world that matters other than your thoughts, imagination, and those fluffy pillows floating along. Once you master the cloud thing, move onto star gazing.

11. Actually LOL

How many times have you gotten a laugh worthy text or email and simply responded to the sender with “LOL”? Maybe it’s because you didn’t think t wasn’t appropriate to actually laugh. Maybe it’s because you were at the wrong place at the wrong time to let your true colors come out. Or perhaps you were self-conscience about the way your chuckle sounds. Well, I say it’s about time you stop holding it in and allow yourself to laugh. Smile when your heart sends the signal and your eyes get that twinkle. Don’t  be afraid to let that harmonious sound escape from your lips and soothe your senses. After all, they say laughter is the best medicine.

Bottom Line – Schedule some time to visit your childhood every once in a while.

What things do you do to lift your spirits? Anything interesting, twisted, or just quirky? 

TERRIfic Quips: Take a deep breathe. It’s  just a bad day not a bad life.

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September 11, 2012

How to Ruin Your Life in 15 Easy Steps

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Much like the great depression, this year seems to have brought about lots of depressed, hopeless, and poor people. Even after losing their jobs, health, and all sense of stability, those lucky losers managed to gain the sympathy of America, government assistance and tons of time to wallow in their pathetic lives.

Want to reap the many benefits of ruining your life too, follow these easy steps and you’ll soon hit your rock bottom…

1. Sell yourself short.

What’s the point in valuing yourself if you are going to get paid less than you are worth anyway? And why bother challenging yourself if you are probably going to fail. Face it –  even if you do try to reach your “full potential” you aren’t going to get paid for it. If you are content with your current level of mediocrity, there’s no need for you to not jump at every chance to make less than minimum wage.

2. Listen to the naysayers.

They’re the ones who have seen and done it all before. They are wiser, richer, and smarter than you and they still had to give up on their dreams. So naturally you should listen to them when they tell you you’re dreams are impossible. After all, they’ve got years of experience to back up their negativity. They know what they’re talking about. You’d be a fool not to listen.

3. Don’t take risks

There’s is a chance you will fail. That’s the thing about risks. The smart thing for you to do is to not to take chances. This way you guarantee that nothing will happen to you. Ever.

4. Listen to the statistics

Sure those depressing statistics are always about other people, but it’s a good indicator of what’s going to happen to you. Why should you expect to start a successful business if 50 percent of them always fail within the first year? With so many records of failure, it’s obvious that’s going to happen to you someday. Numbers don’t lie.

5. Follow the crowd

There’s a reason why loads of people are all doing the same thing. It’s because it’s the right thing to do. Think about it. If it’s a dumb thing to do why would so many people be engaging in it. It’s time to join the herd and follow suit. If you don’t know what to do follow the way of the crowd. They won’t steer your wrong.

6. Quit after the first attempt

If it doesn’t work out the first time what makes you think it will work on the second, third or fourth attempts. Nothing is going to change and you’ll only continue to get negative results. The best thing for you to do is to quit while you’re ahead.

7. Live in the past

There’s nothing better than reliving the best moments of yesteryear on a recurring basis. There’s no point in striving for the best if it’s probably going to just fall flat of what you’ve already done. The best days of your life are already behind you. Live it over and over again.

8. Resist change.

You know how the saying goes: If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. There’s no need to waste time improving aspects of your life if you are already content with the way things are. You don’t have to change just because the world around you does. Stay the same. Change and progress are overrated.

9. Do only what is required of you.

Don’t bother going above and beyond the call of duty. After all, you aren’t getting paid for it. Your hard work isn’t going to get recognized and you’re probably just going to be taken advantage. So go ahead and just do the bare minimum. People probably aren’t paying attention to you anyway.

10. Have a sense of entitlement

You’ve got a college degree, six years of management experience and awards behind your name. Of course, you deserve to get a six figure salary at the new company even though you’ve never worked in the industry before. They’d be fooling themselves if they think you don’t deserve at least $100,000 to start. You need to refer those human resources professionals to your resume again.

11. Only chase the money

Who needs a life of meaning, happiness, and fulfillment when you are filthy rich? Sure you feel your life is void of purpose and you have no companion, but it’s ok because Lincoln, Benjamin, and Jackson have become like family to you. Luckily, that’s all the family you need.

12. Wait for things to happen to you

Patience is a virtue. There’s no sense in going out and making things happen. Things will come to you in due time. So rather than tiring yourself out by being proactive, you should probably try doing nothing. Good things come to those who wait.

13. Bite the hand that feeds you

The only way to get anywhere in life is to step on the hands that helped you rise above your obstacles. Don’t feel bad. If they were smart they would have tried to help themselves instead of helping you succeed. It’s every man for himself these days. You never asked for those handouts, so they shouldn’t expect anything in return.

14. Ignore the opportunities

After all, they are almost always too good be true. You’re better off questioning everything and being skeptical of all seemingly good things that come your way.

15. Ignore all your mistakes

Whoever said you can learn from your mistakes was seriously mistaken. After all, you’re just going to continuing making new ones as long as you live. So don’t even bother owning up to the mistakes you’ve already made. You are only bound to repeat them.

All jokes aside, your life is truly what you make it. I’ve learned that negativity only brings more negativity. As children, we’re taught that nothing is impossible. The key is to remember that as adults. Happiness is a choice. Even a few bad choices won’t make your life a terrible one unless you decide to.

What steps have you taken towards ruining your life lately? 

TERRIfic Quip: If you want to see a miracle, be the miracle.

September 4, 2012

Life isn’t Fair… So Why isn’t it?

You don’t have to be a wise old sage to know that life isn’t fair. Unfortunately, it probably never will be. How many times have you

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been passed up for that academic scholarship you know you deserve when the dean’s daughter always gets it? Or how often can you recall always having to clean the dishes after your youngest sibling made the mess. Yet he got to watch cartoons all day while you were slaving away. Or what about last week when the police officer clearly racially profiled you and pulled you over because you just so happened to to match the description of the person who stole a car last week? The list goes on and on.

Being the optimistic person that I am, I would love to say that these “injustices” will end someday and life will soon be fair for all. But I have to face the fact that it probably won’t. I’ve sat there and pondered why we all can’t have the lives we’ve hoped for. I’ve pondered the reasons why the person who follows all the rules and works hard just can’t catch a break. And I’ve tried to make sense of the reasons why all my prayers don’t come true. Then it dawned on me. Maybe life isn’t fair because it’s for the best. Perhaps, it’s because we’re destined for something better.

Remember that post where I mentioned I didn’t get that raise I knew I deserved and how unfair the entire situation was? Well, I didn’t realize it then but not getting that raise was the best thing that ever happened to me. Of course, my heart was broken after all the hard work, preparations and prayers I put into work performance so I can earn the raise. I was driving around a beat up 97 Ford Escort, and had student loan bills I couldn’t afford just piling up. If there was ever a moment I felt life wasn’t fair that was it. But it took that realization of an unfair moment for me to do something about the situation.

I was struggling financially and mentally with little hope for growth and improvement for a position I only liked. I thought, if I was going to struggle I might as well be struggling for something I loved. And that’s when I took the biggest risk of my life by quitting my job and embarking on my journey to freelance writing bliss. It was time for me to take control of my own salary, my own mental health, and my professional growth. Taking that risk was one of the best things I have ever done and I owe it all to an unfair life and lack of a raise. I’ve learned that life isn’t supposed to be fair. Sometimes we need those unfair moments to motivate us. Sometimes we need those unfair moments to realize that we are settling or that we are destined for something better. Or sometimes those unfair moments are there to teach us that we should be happy with what we already have. Whatever the reason, I am happy life isn’t always fair and that I don’t get everything I ask for.

Aren’t you happy you don’t always get what you want? Is there an unfair moment that ended up being rather helpful? 

TERRIfic Quip: Everything is cracked. That’s how the light gets in.