April/May 2008 Life’s Journey Newsletter
Article- More or Less
Class-Writing Your Life Story
Welcome new readers and thank-you loyal subscribers. Since this months letter is so late in the month I decided to make it a combined April May issue. In response to request I am now offering an evening Writing Your Life Story class beginning May 22; please see details below.
More or Less
“What do you want more of?” This question was asked during a telephone conference call that I participated in several years ago and it is one I come back to often. When life is hectic the idea of asking for more seems ludicrous. Actually if what I ask for more of, is time for being quiet, unhurried, and at peace it isn’t ridiculous at all. It becomes a way to focus on what is important to me and how to best use the time I have. The other part of this is what do I need less have to have more of what I want.
The way I practice this is to take a sheet of paper and draw a line lengthwise down the page. On one side I write the word more and on the other side I write the words less/fewer. Then I write my thoughts, ideas, needs, and wants on the appropriate side of the page. It is important to keep writing without censoring the thoughts until I can’t think of anything else. Some things that I keep in mind is that I want as many ideas as possible and the way to get that is to write continuously and not worry about repetitions, spelling errors or feasibility. I also find it helpful to time this exercise, five to ten minutes per column works well for me. When the time is up I like to go back reread the lists, if anything seems to be missing I add it. This is also the time that I cross out or combine items that are redundant.
On a separate sheet of paper I make another lengthwise line with the same headings. This is where I rewrite items so that they are very specific. Rather than more time I answer the question more time for what? How would I spend that time, doing what activities? Why is it important to me to have more time for that activity? If I want less stress what exactly do I mean by that? Why is it necessary?
I like to review the new lists and put a check mark by the one or two items in each column that seem to jump out at me. These are the squeaky wheels, the ones that were probably repeated several times in slightly different ways. I find that often the items will be an answer or partial answer for each other. If I determine that what I really need is more time and less stress then managing my time better and saying no to things that increase my stress level can be a useful place to start. Brainstorming some detailed ideas is very helpful which then gives me an action plan to put into place for the next week. I remember that for an action plan to work it needs some guidelines, it needs to be precise, practicable, useful, challenging and rewarding when I write it down. Sometimes the plan needs to be broken into smaller segments and implemented over time. The last piece of this process is telling some one else who I know will ask me about my progress.
I like to keep in mind that each time I say yes to something I am in effect saying no to something else and vice versa. Being very specific and conscious about what I say yes or no to, helps me to stay focused and allows me to have more of what I really want while having less of what I find stressful.
© 2008 Karen Ore, All rights reserved.
“The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.” Frank Lloyd Wright
“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other one thing.” Abraham Lincoln
“They say that time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” Andy Warhol
Class-Writing Your Life Story
Have you been thinking that you want to write your life story and aren’t sure how or where to begin? This may be the time to start that manuscript. Instruction on memoir/autobiography, writing exercises, and educational resources, will combine to help you write in your authentic voice. Discover the various forms of life writing, complete a short weekly writing assignment on a selected theme, read your work to the group, and receive feedback on your prose in a supportive setting. The weekly 2-hour class will meet Thursdays, May 22 through June 26, 6:00PM – 8:00 PM at Llama Llama Books. You may register at the Llama Llama Bookstore, 777 E. Main St., Bozeman 587-7779 or directly with Karen 570-6334, firstname.lastname@example.org. Class fee of $100.00 includes instruction and class materials.
This letter is part of a recurring series of monthly newsletters plus occasional mailings about special offers and programs and is now available in two versions an e-letter version and a mailed version usually sent the first full week of each month. The e-letter list is not sold, rented, or loaned to a third party, ever.
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All the best, Karen
Karen Ore, Life Coach
Bozeman, MT 59715
”At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.” Lao Tzu