Monday, April 11, 2011

Life is best written one page at a time

Someone recently asked me if I'd be interested in doing something, and quite honestly, the only reason I answered in the negative was fear. It's hard to make changes, to not know where the road will lead, or what risks are involved. It's hard to give up what you know, for what's unknown.

It's all I've been able to think about since that discussion and today, I remembered a piece of advice I've been giving over and over again to a friend at work that just recently joined our little team (department). You see, most of the time when you open up a claim to begin processing it, it's maybe 60-80 pages long. But every once in awhile, you open up one that's around 200 pages. It doesn't just have regular attorney invoices, but it also has refunds and other claims that have already been filed, penalties and interest, utility bills to go through, and other oddball stuff that usually leaves you with a claim that doesn't balance for the 1st 3 hours.

 So, my friend Steph, has come across several of the more difficult ones and I continually tell her "One page at a time - don't think about the claim, just do it." I've watched a lot of people, myself included, see how rough a claim is going to be from the beginning and immediately something inside just shuts down. Something says "This is hard." And I boldly suggested to her that her claim wasn't hard, it just wasn't easy. And that there is a difference.
For example:
Losing 20 pounds in a month is hard.
Losing 5 pounds in a month is not easy.
Losing 1 pound in a month is easy.

Rather than think about the whole of the claim, I try and simply take it one page at a time. It still takes longer than an "easy" claim, but it's not impossible. So today, as I struggled with a "not easy" claim of my own I couldn't stop thinking about whether I'm looking at the offer with the same eyes that see 200 pages and shies away.

I don't want to live a life of fear of changing my happy little world. And believe me, my world is OH so happy. Because at the end of every successful claim my company is richer, and if I live my life the same way too, perhaps my life would be richer for all the difficult tasks I've taken on. I also don't want to change my life just to prove I'm not afraid.

Right now, I'm picturing the offer as a whole, where it leads, and whether I like the potential outcomes or am afraid of the potential outcomes. But I can't help but wonder if I shouldn't just take it one day, one page, at a time. Let the story be written as it's written.

If any of you wonderful friends have great advice on how to make decisions (besides the #1 "Oh God, what on earth should I do?) I'd love to hear it.

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could

Sunday, April 10, 2011


For those of you that saw this "book to read" post earlier this morning, I'd just like to say - I really do understand the concepts of spacing and paragraphs. For some reason Blogger just decided to edit them right out of my html. I gave it the evil eye and then html'ed them right back in.

I have a new book to read.

For those of you that watch me on facebook, I should tell you that it's not the book you think. For my blog readers, I'll just quickly tell you the good news a publishing company has contacted me about doing a review of one of their books. They're also offering to send extras for me to give away in a contest for you guys. I'm thrilled! And looking forward to talking with them next week.

But that's not the book I'm talking about here.

One of my favorite bloggers (C Jane Enjoy It) had a guest post this morning and the guest posted a quote: "Then the heart of Eowyn changed, or else at last she understood it. And suddenly her winter passed, and the sun shone on her. “I stand in Minas Anor, the Tower of the Sun,” she said; “and behold! The Shadow has departed! I will be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great Riders, nor take joy only in the songs of slaying. I will be a healer, and love all things that grow and are not barren.”

It's a quote from J.R.R. Tolkians "The Lord of The Rings". It's a series I've never had any interest in before. I watched one of the movies then got so upset at it's "To be continued" style ending that I refused to watch the rest. I've heard that Tolkian was friends with C.S. Lewis and that there is supposed to be a lot of symbolism much like the Narnian books but, from what little I knew about the series, I couldn't see the symbolism being like Narnia at all. But this quote alone changed my mind. "Then her heart was changed, or else at last she understood. And suddenly her winter passed and the sun shone upon her."

I've seen that incredible moment in my own life, and I've got some folks right now that I would love to see that moment happen for them. I serve a great BIG God who would love to see that as well, but we're just too shadowed to at last understand.

The most interesting words that the creator pens immediately after this breakthrough really catch my eye though: "I will be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great Riders, nor take joy only in the songs of slaying. I will be a healer, and love all things that grow and are not barren."

Eowyn knew what she needed to be.

This breakthrough of understanding didn't leave her wondering "what next?", she had a new path to follow. I'm NOT THIS anymore but I WILL BE that. I think too often we get into our minds and we decide what we don't like about ourselves and we decide I won't be this anymore. But never replace that thought with what we will be.

I think that's why we fail far more often than we succeed.

I haven't read the books yet. I will though, that's my very next step. I want to see if Eowyn succeeds. I want to see what becomes of her. I want to watch her journey. But most of all I wanted to write to ask this question - if not of you, then of myself - am I busy being what I will be? Or am I busy trying to not be what I won't be?