Attitude can change everything

Following on from the last post on passion, I’m coming from a different direction this post.

Attitude is what it's all about.

Attitude is what it's all about.

Work takes up about one-third of our life. That’s a lot of hours we are giving to someone else. If we like what we are doing, work becomes fun. If we don’t like what we are doing, it feels like someone has slowed the movie and we can't move faster no matter how much the boss is on our back.

The question arises: what are you expecting from your job? Are you climbing the ladder of success or are you working to earn an income regardless of the enjoyment in your job.

If you choose to become passionate about your job, you will reap the benefits of catching your boss’ attention resulting in that much sought after pay rise or promotion. Being passionate about your job is linked to what motivates you. If you are motivated by a bigger pay packet or a step up the ladder then being passionate about what you do will reap the rewards you are looking for. Maybe you are motivated by just doing a great job, then your passion will no doubt be fired enough for you to continue in that job.

When the motivation to succeed isn’t there though, it’s hard to be passionate about a project. If you are watching the clock, working through the tasks with your mind focused on when the next break is can make for a long day that sometimes feels as though it will never end. It’s probably time to take a long hard look at why you are doing what you are doing. Why are you there? Being there for the money is a good reason because it pays the bills, but this isn’t always a good reason to stay in a job.

Step back and look at how your lack of motivation is affecting the other areas of your life. Do you feel as though your job is sucking the life out of you? Do you feel grey inside with no hint of colour on the horizon? It’s probably time for change and it’s a good idea to take time out and focus on all aspects of your life and ask some serious questions. Because if you lack motivation there is no way you are going to become passionate about your job unless you change your attitude.

To change your attitude, look for those tasks that excite you. By focussing on what you like in your job you might find a way to exploit that and turn it into a passion.

Take time today, to find a part of your  job that you can become passionate about to make your work life more enjoyable. Attitude can transform our life overnight and give us a head start on where we want to go in the future. It may just put more colour in your life, too.

Changing your attitude will change your future...

Passion, the centre of your life

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Do you have a passion? A passion to write, to paint, to create something the world needs? Have you followed that passion?

My passion started in year one at school when I opened my first reader. Who were the people on the page and what was their life like? It sparked a curiosity in me that has been with me ever since. In year four I walked into the library and I found rows upon rows of books. Intimidated by seeing so many books, I stepped cautiously into that world of silence. My pulse raced as the different coloured spines drew my attention. The more spines I looked at the more overwhelmed I became. How I was ever going to read all those books? My teacher assured me I only had to read the ones I was interested in and it would be a good idea to read something outside my interest every now and again as I grew older, she said.

I took her wise words to heart and I lost myself in the world of words, characters and foreign lands. This passion for reading has led me to write and now writing is as much a need for me as breathing. The simple task of sitting at my keyboard and typing words or using a pen, which I often do, puts me into a different level far away from my everyday life. You could call it escape, but that's what I want to do: help my readers escape from their everyday struggles and take them on an emotional journey where they will become good friends with my characters so that they live in their hearts for a very long time.

My next novel, Mr Bojangles is the sequel to African Hearts. I've been writing this story on and off while I wrote Dusty. Justin and Kizza floated into my mind every now and then reminding me their story wasn't complete. I pushed them back saying I wasn't ready, but they insisted it was time, so here I am enjoying being with them as they take the next step into the future out of their village, Gumboli to Bond University at the Gold Coast.

My process with this novel has been different. I've made notes whenever Justin and Kizza have entered my conscious and taken time to write a few scenes. This week I looked at these scenes in detail and discovered they don't fit the story I want to tell. These young people aren't just learning about medicine, they are learning about themselves and growing in ways they had never thought. They are young people with loving hearts and the desire to be loved by their peers. This need for acceptance challenges them in ways that have surprised me. Their presence is so strong now they have overtaken the story showing me their journey into the future instead of me writing the story.

My passion for writing this story is well and truly on fire and is all consuming so that I now can't not write the book. Has your passion taken hold of you and consumed all of your waking time? Is it a passion or is it something you think you'd like to do because you've seen others doing it? A passion will grab you and it won't let you go no matter how hard you try to push it away. A passion demands attention and you had better give in to it and follow it, otherwise you will be miserable. Are you feeling lost and irritable and unable to focus? I used to be like that when I was in the world of numbers. It has taken me a long time to take that numbers shirt off and put on the words shirt. It feels good in my words shirt. I've come home and I've settled in with Kizza and Justin and I have accepted they have as much to teach me as what they will learn on their journey.

So what's your passion? Are you following it? What's stopping you? Start making small changes toward your project and eventually you will find your passion shirt is just the right fit for you. I'd love to hear how well your shirt fits in the comments below.


The Long Road to Reading and Arithmetic

Pyjama Angels...changing young people's lives.

Pyjama Angels...changing young people's lives.

Hello, I'm a Pyjama Angel. I want to tell you about The Pyjama Foundation and the fabulous work it does with foster children.

This is an official poster of The Pyjama Foundation. The purpose is to raise awareness of the difficulties experienced by foster children and how this impacts their learning. This Sunday, 24th March, The Pyjama Foundation is conducting its major fund raising event for the year in Queensland with The Long Road event. This event involves non-competitive walk events throughout Queensland and Sydney. If you want to be part of this worthwhile event register here today: http://thepyjamafoundation.com/downloads/reg-long-road-home.pdf

It's going to be a fun event. I'll be attending the Gold Coast event bright and early on Sunday morning walking and chatting with other participants.

The Pyjama Foundation assists children in foster/statutory care. These children often come from traumatic backgrounds and have a hard time trying to understand and where they fit in the world. The Pyjama Foundation has started a literacy and numeracy program for the children. For one hour per week, a Pyjama Angel visits the child to help them with reading and/or their arithmetic. Apart from being a mother, it is one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Every week I sit with my special child and I help them with their reading. There is much sharing about our day and what we are interested in, and then we read and play games or make up our own wacky stories. To share with a young mind is beneficial to their and my own creativity and it's my way of giving back to my community. These children desperately need to be able to read and understand basic numeracy, like every other child, but it is their circumstances that make this road more diffcult for them.

If you don't have the time to walk this Sunday, perhaps you would like to help this organisation achieve their financial goals by giving a donation. Thank you. These children need these basic skills to ensure they have a future.

Summer 2013

Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast

Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast

I thought I'd share some photos of my favourite place where I walk regularly: Burleigh Heads. The weather has been rough this summer, so much that I haven't been in the surf. Not only have the wild storms washed a lot of the beach away, but the water is now brown from the silt that has filtered down from the Nerang and Tweed Rivers. At first glance the eroded beaches are devastating, and the rough seas make surfing and swimming conditions dangerous. This photo taken from the headland near Burleigh Hill was the most tranquil I'd seen all summer. The photo was taken just before the sun set. You can see the gold sunlight touching the tips of the waves. It was a great place to meditate.

Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast

Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast

 This photo shows some of the erosion of the beach at Burleigh Heads. Because of the protective Burleigh Hill this area wasn't as badly affected by the recent rough seas, however Surfers Paradise and other parts of the Gold Coast experienced major beach erosion with up to three metres and more washed away. The beaches are slowly recovering and the council is working hard to repair the devastation so that we have lots of sand again for our Easter tourists.

The cyclones wreak havoc along our coastline during the summer, however within a few months of normal conditions our beaches will return to their former beauty. There are a lot of similarities between how nature repairs the land and how people's hearts and minds are repaired after they have been through a storm. In time peace will come again. The important thing to remember is that there are lessons to be learned from the difficulties we experience. We often come back stronger and better equipped than before for the new challenges that are ahead of us.

How about you, are you battling a storm at the moment? I'm encouraging you to accept the storm and work with it, for in time it too will pass.

Our Vulnerability

Our earth needs tender loving care, too.

Our earth needs tender loving care, too.

John F. Kennedy said in a speech on June 28, 1963: The supreme reality of our time is . . . the vulnerability of our planet.

With a meteorite crashing to earth a couple of weeks ago, I began to think about Kennedy's wisdom. When I saw the footage on TV of the flaming meteorite falling to earth, I was mesmerised and frightened that it might hit a densely populated area and thousands of people would die. This fireball was a fragment of what could be out there in space waiting to collide with this planet in the future. What if it was bigger? What if the other meteorite that passed earth by 27,000 kilometres collided?

Our planet is vulnerable. The human race and all the other life forms inhabiting this planet is susceptible to outside forces. If a gigantic meteoroid was heading straight for our planet, I'm sure NASA and all the countries of the world would come together to do all in their power to intercept or divert it.

Referring back to John F. Kennedy's speech: are meteorites the only threat to our planet or is it something more than that? People may not be meteorites, but the impact people have on the earth's resources is a threat to life. What I'm talking about is the amount of rubbish that is clogging up the streams and oceans.

I've just finished reading Jessica Watson's, "True Spirit". I was dismayed to read, while she was sailing around the world on Ella's Pink Lady, she saw plastic junk and other debris floating in the water. Where does all this junk go? Do the sea creatures eat it; is it washed up on the beaches of all the continents of this world; does it float forever on the high seas accumulating  as one big mass; or sink to the ocean floor suffocating the life that inhabits down there? Whatever happens to the garbage is unacceptable and we must reduce  the amount we use. It is almost fifty years since John F. Kennedy made that statement. A timely reminder for us all to be aware of the impact each of us have on our fragile earth.

Clean Up Astralia Day is on Sunday, 3rd March. I'm hoping we'll remember to think about the amount of electricity we burn, the rubbish we put in our bins; and the amount of water we use, so that we and our planet don't die a long, slow and agonizing death.

Thank you to all the people involved in Clean Up Australia Day 2013.