People Pleaser No More

Cool

 

I could’ve titled this, “I Can’t Please Everyone, But I Sure Have Tried.” This probably started in my family of origin where I strove to get good grades thus pleasing my parents, to have lots of friends, to be well liked by the teachers, and on top of that I wanted to be cool.

I wish I could say when I got into adulthood I was untouched by the expectations of others. Hardly. Those ‘great expectations’ were often heavy on me. I wasn’t performing well enough on my job (though I seemed to be doing as well as other employees). My house didn’t pass ‘the white glove test.” Remember that, when your mother-in-law, or your snarky older sister, or that holier than thou church lady comes, rubs her white glove across your coffee table and horror-of-horrors, absolute panic-time, she finds dust. Of course, since then I’ve learned a little known truth: dust is a wood preservative.

I can say that at one point in my life, right before I started my serious fiction writing journey, I twisted myself inside-out to make everything perfect for others in my personal world, to create a happy picture. Some had absolutely no appreciation of my efforts, while a few others actually disdained my efforts and actively tried to wreck them. So, I tried harder and the upshot was I lost myself in the process, for a while. For a while I was in a place of desperation. That was nearly eight years ago, when I banged out a really terrible first effort at a murder mystery novel. Writing fiction helped bring me back to me…back to the woman God sees when He looks at me.

Now that I’m a tad older than 39, I’ve learned categorically, no matter what I do, somebody’s going to have an opinion about my actions. I can prove this by taking a cursory look at social networking sites. Don’t you just love when somebody takes a stand, perhaps a faith stand, and they get castigated?Maybe they’re out of step with the mainstream. Maybe they hold traditional core values and they dare to express that… and they get figuratively stomped on. Other, do nothing types, sitting in their pajamas in their parents’ basements barrage them with insult upon insult. Some do not merely want to win the present argument, they seek to destroy the other person.

When this happens to me, and it has happened to me, I refer to, hold onto, put my feet down firmly, and stand on Scripture. Romans 8:1 [NASB] Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (2)For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.

Eagel 2

 

Love, Laugh, Lift in 2013

Baby

I’ve decided to be happy this year. The last year had more than it’s share of trauma and angst. Well, to be totally honest…pain, suffering, and anguish.

I’ve made a firm commitment to myself and shared it with God. I will live in joy this year. Actually that’s what He’s been wanting me to do since 2011. Some are slower than others.

On August 28, 2011, after hurricane Irene, the Lord gave me “a word.” Well, three words actually: love, laugh, lift. I was deeply touched by them. I wrote them in my Bible…at the top…in Matthew 5. Since then, I’ve pondered them, sincerely reflected upon them, prayed about them, and shared this wisdom with a few others who I thought were open to hearing.

Father and child

Since hurricane Sandy affected my city in such a profoundly horrific manner, and since the mass murder in Newtown, I’ve come to understand that the Lord wants me to do more than ruminate over these words. He wants me to live them.

He wants me to have joy in my heart and love others. He wants me to exist in a state of joy and to laugh a lot. He wants me to rely on His grace and lift where I can lift. He wants me to encourage others to love, laugh, and lift.

Together

Now I’m Really Blogging, Blah, Blah, Blah

So, how does one write an interesting blog that others will want to read? Good question.

The interesting part has something to do, I think, with figuring out what your passion is and writing about it.

The who will want to read it part has to do with figuring out who your blog audience is and writing for them.

As you can guess, I’m krazy about edgy crime fiction and boy do I like to write about it. But who wants to read what I write about it? That’s another good question. I’m starting to find out, but it’s a process.

A lot of people are writing about edgy Christian fiction these days. I’m not the only one. Just look around at other blogs. Go ahead, if my blog’s any good, you’ll come back.

When I look around at blogs writing about edgy Christian fiction I see a lot of articles on when to break the rules, and/or when and how to write an acceptable sex scene in Christian fiction. Sex is part of life and I can be edified by a tastefully written sex scene.

Why doesn’t anyone write about a tastefully written sitting in church scene, listening to a sermon scene? Frankly I’ve been bored to death by many a too long worship service scene. I’d like some tips on how to write a good church scene. Really, I’m not being cute.

At this point I have to confess, I’ve never written a sex scene. There, I’ve admitted it. Now do you feel better having dragged it out of me?

I’m always talking about being authentic as a murder mystery writer. Well I think blog writers should also be authentic. The good ones are. Honesty goes a long way. People know when they’re being fed a bunch of canned crap. [I was going to change “crap” to “bologna” so as not to offend, but decided that wouldn’t be authentic. Is there such a thing as canned bologna anyway?]

So, here I am plunking away at my keyboard, vowing with all my heart to really put it out there and let the process unfold. Ghee, even I want to see what I’ll write. LOL

Dogone-it Get Hopeful About Something!!!

There seems to be such a general feeling of malaise in the nation. It’s as if there’s been a cultural shift toward negativity. No wonder everyone feels depressed.

What we need is to get hopeful on purpose. Whoa, that sounds a lot like having faith.

FAITH. Having faith?

Yes, that’s exactly it. It takes faith that things are going to work together for good to get rid of most forms of depression. So why not try a little faith?

The Bible tells us in Romans 8:28 ~  And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

The New York Times article, “Drugs May Only Help Severe Depression,” points out that exercise, reading about depression, going to a doctor, or psychotherapy tend to be as effective with mild to moderate forms of depression as antidepressants. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/06/health/views/06depress.html?scp=2&sq=ssri&st=cse

Charles Barber, author of the book Comfortably Numb: How Psychiatry Is Medicating a Nation told the CBS Morning Show that fish oil actually may relieve mild depression.

Why not try a shift in attidude and perception? Get out of that slump!!! Look upward!!!

Get you some faith!!!

Do it on purpose. Why not try RADICAL HOPE!!!

I’m NOT advising patients with severe depression to throw their meds out. No way!!! But even with severe depression, faith can only help. Try faith, you’ll like it.

Nail Polish Therapy

hand, nail polishGenerally the state of my nails is a good indication of my state of mind. And lately, my nails have been a wreck. I’ve been stressed and over stressed. Chipped polish: BIGTIME!!!.

Years ago my dear friend Judy and I used to sit with a cup of coffee and good music in the background, doing what we called Nail Polish Therapy. The various bottles all in different colors would be out before us and the nail file, nail polish remover, etc. Everything needed for a manicure. I remember a beautiful light lilac we both wore. We’d file and polish and talk about our lives, who we were, where we’d been, where we were going. We’d give comfort and support to each other. That was before my marriage and before both Judy and I moved?in different geographical directions.

Still, the principle holds. Today I got out my nail equipment. LOL I put on a Christian CD – Virtue’s Virtuosity, a CD I actually got it for my tweens, but it’s doing the trick. It’s up and positive. And I’m winding up with darned good looking hands to boot!!!

Now I need to create a fictional character who’s seriously into doing nail polish therapy. Or, I could create a small group of women who get together at each other’s houses to do nail polish therapy, while bolstering each other up. I’ll file that away for a future book.