Thursday, January 29, 2004

What Are You Waiting For?

Based on the conversations I've been having with people lately, nearly every one of us is waiting for something... waiting for a better job (to be happy), waiting for any job (to feel secure), waiting to have my life figured out (to allow myself to get serious about dating/finding a life partner), waiting for other people (to do something fun), waiting to have more time (to do something like exercise or spend more time with family).

Even I've been waiting lately. I have enough things to do that I was waiting for the directive to "Write a Blog entry" from my Life Balance™ software to tell me to go ahead and write something. Even though the muse did strike several times, I managed to strike right back and swat that bugger flat!

On looking into the matter (after I realized it had been quite a while), it seems I somehow managed to show the computer closed 24-hrs a day so no suggestions for anything having to do with the computer have come up for a couple of weeks. D'you think I'm trying to tell myself something?

Anyway, back to my point - yes, I do usually have one, even if I sometimes take the long way to get there. After much thought and several discussions on the subject, I have come to the following conclusion

Waiting is damaging to the soul.

If that's true, it'd probably be real helpful to run, not walk to the nearest exit out of the waiting area. For some, it could be a matter of life (one worth living anyway) and death.

The first step is the identify what the waiting's about. What is it we really want anyway?

When it's things like "money", "love" and "security", it's important to narrow down those broader concepts with the answer to "Why do I want that? What would I do or do with it if I had that in my life?"

The answer to the question "What are you waiting for?" is too often about the obstacles we see keeping us from what we want. When we focus on the obstacles, we give them more power. They are what is in the forefront of our thinking, what is programming our RAS as we move through life. How about changing the question instead to

What are you waiting for?

- as in -

What will you have in your life when you're done waiting?

That's the first step.

The next step is to decide you're done waiting now. I hope you won't mistake that for running around like a chicken with your head cut off (as my grandmother used to say), looking for something, anything, to do. What I mean is to find some other way to be, other than waiting. It still may take some patience to have what you want. I'm not naive enough to believe that everything happens overnight, just because we want them to (just some things). Instead of waiting around, putting your soul on hold, how will you be?

One of the things I've opened myself up for recently is to be appreciative instead of waiting. When I find myself waiting for something, I start taking stock of the aspects of my life that I've not been paying attention to. What can I appreciate right now and work at experiencing fully? When I'm waiting, I hold those things at arm's length (or more) and am thinking more about some ambiguous future when I might be allowed to have what I want... instead of appreciating what's right in front of me.

I realize that for folks in survival mode, that can be a tall order. Sometimes there seems to be very little around to appreciate. Try looking though, the results might surprise you. If you feel so inclined, send your thoughts to and let me know what you find to appreciate when things get really difficult. Others who are feeling less creative might like the ideas.

What about you, what are you waiting for?

And how will you be instead of waiting?

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Clean Computing and a Better Life

For some folks, their New Year's Resolution is to finally do something about the things that they've been tolerating that are really driving them nuts. If you've been putting up with any of those annoying little technical issues we all see from time to time, maybe I can help - or maybe you have ideas that will help others.

I know we all hate pop-ups and spam. Now I'm beginning to hear from more people whose computers are "hijacked" by some of the adware and spyware that gets installed (unbeknownst to the user) when visiting various sites. Kind of a pain, and being a geek does not always make us any less prone to such things.

In trying to help out some family members whose computers had been hijacked, I ran across a useful site that will check for you to see if any detectable parasites are using your browser. One one computer alone, I was able to detect and find instructions for removing Newdotnet, BDE, DownloadWare, EnhanceWindow, SaveNow, and SCBar. is the website that supplied me with all the useful information, so thanks to Andrew Clover for making this possible.

For blocking pop-ups and having some control over the allowing those to come through that I do want to see, I'm still largely in favor of the Google Toolbar. I'm sure there are aspects to this feature that could be seen as suspicious... I just haven't been personally offended by any of them yet and I have been concerned about what might be happening with other popular pop-up blockers. For example, one person I was trying to help had trouble using PanicWare in allowing desirable pop-ups to come through - it could be because this person isn't real technical, but hey, you shouldn't have to be, should you?

Spam filtering is getting better at work (when they shell out the bucks for fancy applications) and through some email services. What do you do if you're one of those caught betwixt and between? If you're using Outlook and are still in need of something good, check out SpamBayes as it seems to work pretty darned well without a whole lot of effort or trauma on my part. I've started to run into some instances when it won't move messages I want to Recover from Spam or Delete as Spam, however I'm chalking it up to a memory issue I know I have. What's that about the cobbler's children having no shoes?

If you know of tools or helpful websites out there that others might benefit from knowing about, please send them along to I'd like to share whatever's useful.

Some folks (especially the geeks, right?) may find it tougher to address non-technical issues in their lives. These are worth addressing too and there are lots of great self-help books and coaches out there to help tackle whatever it is... providing you don't think you're above all that sort of thing and you understand that the personal issues sometimes take a little time to work through. For some things, there just isn't a silver bullet; that doesn't make them any less worthwhile pursuing.

What's one thing that you want to be different this year? And are you willing to actually do something about it?

Tolerate less and enjoy more.