Monthly Archives: February 2016

Day 1146: My voice

I’m trying out for “The Voice” tomorrow, so I’d like to write about my voice today.

My voice is:

  • loving,
  • soothing,
  • delicate,
  • strong,
  • shaky,
  • powerful,
  • modulated,
  • emotional,
  • high,
  • low,
  • joyful,
  • mournful,
  • complicated,
  • simple,
  • focused,
  • all over the place,
  • affecting,
  • affected by what’s around me,
  • affectionate,
  • authentic,
  • intentional,
  • sincere,
  • haunting,
  • soulful,
  • mature,
  • hesitant,
  • certain,
  • pleasing,
  • imperfect, and
  • unique.

How would you describe your voice — singing or otherwise?

I hope my voice comes through in today’s photos:

If you could hear my voice now, you’d hear this:

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, pride, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 68 Comments

Day 1145: Comparisons

When I woke up this morning in my incomparable friend Jeanette’s home in Philadelphia, I knew today’s blog post would be called “Comparisons.”

Comparing myself to other human beings, I think we all do many comparisons, every day,  including:

  • Comparisons of ourselves to other people.
  • Comparisons of the present to the past.
  • Comparisons of reality to what we think should be.

How would you compare my comparatively short list of common comparisons to comparisons you’ve noticed?

Compared to other definitions, here’s how “Comparisons” are defined in my list of Cognitive Distortions (Automatic and Unhelpful Thoughts):

Comparisons.
We compare ourselves to others, with ourselves coming out short. For example, “I’m not as smart (or good, competent, good-looking, lovable, etc.) as that other person.” Or, we compare ourselves to how we think we should be, or how we’ve been before. We might think that comparisons help motivate us, but they usually make us feel worse.

Comparing this to other blog posts I’ve written, I need to include:

  1. an explanation of why “Comparisons” was on my mind when I woke up.  In two days, I’ll be trying out for “The Voice,” where my voice will be compared to thousands of others.
  2. photos, which could be compared to each other and/or to other photos you’ve seen.

I am now comparing the size of two of those photos, above,  to what I want them to be.  Here are the two Rumi quotes on Jeanette’s kitchen cabinets, comparatively larger, so you can compare them:

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How would you compare this post to others?

Many thanks to Jeanette, to Rumi, and to my readers, all beyond compare.

Categories: friendship, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 37 Comments

Day 1144: O…K… Ready

O…K… Ready-ers — I mean, Readers — are you ready for this?

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O…K… I saw that ready carpet cleaner yesterday, at work. And while the carpet in my office does need cleaning, I wasn’t ready to use it.  Why?  Because I was getting ready to leave for my vacation to Philadelphia and New York City.

O…K… I’m ready for my train trip to Philly to see my bff Jeanette and to try out for “The Voice” on Sunday.

O…K…what helps me be ready?

To be as much as possible in the moment, letting go of unhelpful memories and thoughts and letting go of worry about the future.

O…K… Ready for the other new photos on my iPhone?

O…K… WordPress peeps, what helps you be ready?

O…K… Ready to give thanks and to go! Have a nice day

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , , , , | 49 Comments

Day 1143: What to do, what to do

What to do, what to do for my blog post today?

What to do, what to do is share my Facebook post, from last night:

I sang one-minute versions of my three “Voice” try-out songs at a staff meeting today, asking people to choose what they preferred. The results were shocking! 0 votes for “Lion Sleeps Tonight.” 4 votes for “Mad World.” 12 votes for “Soothe” (which nobody had ever heard before). What to do, what to do …

What to do, what to do?  My Facebook friends asked me to let them express their opinions about to do, what to do for my “Voice” audition this Sunday.  What I did, what I did is to post one-minute versions of me singing “Mad World” and “Soothe” on Facebook.

What to do, what to do when my Facebook friends voted overwhelmingly for “Mad World”?

What to do, what to do with all this conflicting data?

Here are my suggestions, for myself, about what to do, what to do:

  • Continue to practice one-minute versions of those songs, getting better, getting better.
  • Ask for  more opinions about what to do, what to do for my audition.
  • Let go, let go of any belief that there is ONE RIGHT WAY to do this audition.
  • Have fun, have fun with the process.
  • Give myself credit, give myself credit FOR SINGING IN FRONT OF MY CO-WORKERS yesterday, with no fear, no fear.
  • Have no fear, no fear about any outcome of my audition for “The Voice” on Sunday.
  • Let go of shame, of shame about any “mistakes” or “rejections.”
  • Follow my intuition in the moment, in the moment.
  • Realize my self-worth, my self-worth is not dependent upon getting a call-back from “The Voice.”
  • Affirm that my voice, my voice deserves to be heard, no matter what the outcome.
  • Resolve that I will do more singing, do more singing no matter what happens.

What to do, what to do with these new photos from yesterday?

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What to do, what to do to explain those photos?

  • What to do, what to do when the temperatures in Boston rise 50 degrees in 36 hours?
  • What to do, what to do when you have a wonderful co-worker who sends you great stuff through inter-office mail?
  • What to do, what to do in a therapy group about sensitivities?
  • What to do, what to do about my drawing of “The Princess and the Pea”?

What to do, what to do? How about making a to do, a to do with a comment from you?

What to do, what to do, now that this post is through?  I’ll just give thanks to you, to you.

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , | 28 Comments

Day 1142: All you need

All you need to know about today’s title is that I saw it in a supermarket last night.

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Is that all you need?  I need more, including  an explanation of why and how Lane Ground Biscuits are all I need.

Writing my blog post each day is all I need to get going every morning.

Many people believe that all you need is right there, in every present moment.

When I go into a room at the Philadelphia Convention Center on February 21, with many other people, to try out for “The Voice,” all I need is this:

When I’m breathing in to sing, I will remember to take in all I need from the universe, including the good wishes of my family, friends, and readers.

All I need, now, is to see if the  photos I took yesterday are all we need, for this blog post.

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All I need, in order to finish packing for my train trip on Thursday, is to get Oscar off my suitcase.

What is all you need, in the present moment?

All I need to end this post is to thank all of those who helped me write it and all of you, no matter what your needs are.

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , , , , | 30 Comments

Day 1141: What do I look and sound like when …?

What do I look and sound like when there’s less than one week before I go to an Open Audition for “The Voice” in Philadelphia?

What do I look and sound like when I’m going up and down between insecurity and confidence?

What do I look and sound like when I’m having trouble getting enough sleep?

What do I look and sound like when I am ….

  • down to earth?

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  • blatant?

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  • stupid?

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  • drunk (even though I don’t drink alcohol)?

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  • filled with resolve?

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  • doing the math?

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  • cold?

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  • fun to know and easy to love?

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  • and, most importantly, singing?

What do I look and sound like when you comment on my blog?

Happy.

I’m looking and sounding grateful, here and now, as I finish this post.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 36 Comments

Day 1140: What I Love

On Valentine’s Day, 2016, I love the idea of starting a list of what I love:

  • My son, Aaron.
  • My sister, Ellen.
  • My boyfriend, Michael.
  • My memories of my parents.
  • Others I love who are no longer with me.
  • My extended family, including my cousins, nieces, and nephews.
  • Myself, with all my imperfections.
  • Our two cats, Harley and Oscar.
  • My friends, including Ada, Barbara, Carol,  Debbie, Deborah, Eleanor, Hillel, Jan, Janet, Jeanette, Jonathan, Kathy, Karen, Laura, Lawry, Leon, Linda, Marcia, Mark, Maria, Maureen, Megan, and other wonderful people whose first names begin with letters in the second half of the alphabet.
  • Letting go of fears, like forgetting to include people in the list directly above.
  • My doctors, who’ve helped keep me alive and thriving.
  • My readers.
  • Blogging.
  • My other talents, including facilitating group therapy and singing.
  • People.
  • Animals.
  • Being out in nature (but not today, because it’s -9 Fahrenheit, which I definitely do not love).
  • Music.
  • The fact that I’m not worrying about how I’m ordering this list.
  • Letting go of judgment.
  • The present moment.
  • Love.
  • Performing in front of other people, even though it makes me nervous.
  • Taking pictures of what’s around me.

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What do you love?

I love that you read this blog.  Many thanks.

Categories: gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 40 Comments

Day 1139: Wanted

I wanted to title this post “wanted” after I saw this Wanted Poster at my wanted job, yesterday:

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I saw that Wanted Poster yesterday while I was doing something I’ve wanted to do for a while:  sing my three possible audition songs for “The Voice” to people who wanted to hear them.   I asked  those people at work, “Which song might make me most wanted by the judges?”   People who wanted to hear all three songs yesterday wanted to tell me their wanted preferences, as follows:

“Mad World” was wanted by 15 people.

“The Lion Sleeps Tonight” was wanted by 5 people.

“Soothe” was wanted by 5 people.

I wanted a clear majority, so I now want to sing “Mad World” for my February 21 audition. (That’s the song WordPresser vanbytheriver has stated that she’s wanted me to sing.) If I’m wanted back, as I’ve wanted, to perform more audition songs for “The Voice,”  I’ll sing all three of those wanted songs.

In case you wanted to see other photos I wanted to take yesterday, here they are:

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I wanted to point out that the cat at the PetSmart shelter  was named “Michael,” just like my boyfriend. Michael wanted to take Michael home last night, but he knew that Oscar, Harley, and my wanted son Aaron haven’t wanted a third cat in the house.

I wonder whether this post is what you wanted today.

Before I end, I wanted to thank all who helped me create this “Wanted” post and also you — of course! — for wanting to read it.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 34 Comments

Day 1138: Cards

Somebody at work, yesterday, talked about the agony of waiting to hear whether she’ll get a green card from the USA government, allowing her to remain here with her husband.

At my try-out for “The Voice” in Philadelphia next weekend, I’m hoping to receive a red card, which will get me into the call-back auditions.

My friend Eleanor sent me this card for my birthday:

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Card-carrying meteorologists around here are predicting bitter cold for the next few days.

Here are some new photos I could store on a memory card:

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The word “card” also means (according to those cards at Merriam-Webster):

a usually clownishly amusing person : wag <he’s such a card>

Some card created this video called Sad Cat Diary:

Any thoughts or feelings about any of these cards?

I’d like to send each one of you a thank you card for reading my blog today.

Categories: definition, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 35 Comments

Day 1137: Control

Yesterday’s group therapy topic was

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Yes, control.

Since I’m in control of writing this, I’ll now tell you I can’t control my surprise about having written only one previous post with the word “control” in the title during all my one thousand, one hundred and thirty-six consecutive days of controlling this WordPress blog. I can’t control the past, even though I might wish I’d written more about this important topic. And — as it says in that one previous controlling post — I can’t control what any of you might do, but I can suggest that you click on the link for Day 140: We cannot control other people.

Having/not having control can bring up a lot of feelings for people, including:

  • fear
  • anxiety
  • satisfaction
  • hope
  • hopelessness
  • acceptance
  • anger
  • avoidance
  • relief
  • frustration
  • happiness
  • shame
  • guilt
  • despair
  • self-consciousness,
  • excitement,
  • worry,
  • confusion,
  • caution,
  • ambition,
  • love,
  • hate, and
  • many, many more.

Since I’m in control here, I’m not going to look up supporting articles for this statement, but I think studies show that human beings need to believe they have some measure of control over their lives in order to thrive and be happy.

I can’t control what other photos are on my iPhone from yesterday. Actually, I can control them enough to bring them over here, like so:

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What are your thoughts about control, at this point in this controlled and controlling post?

I can’t control whether you leave a comment, but I can control how I respond to your response to this post about control.

Uncontrolled gratitude to all those who helped me take control of this post and to you — of course! — for the control to show up here, today.

Categories: blogging, group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , | 43 Comments

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