Friday, September 7, 2012

My Pollyanna Is Strong!

EDITED TO ADD: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARNEE!!!!

For those who've just tuned in, I'm the annoyingly positive member of this crew. But there's a reason for this. Because positivity works. It's worked for me for about eight years now. And let me tell you, it was not always easy to stay positive during those eight years.

Most of the time, I cruise along at an even keel. But then there are those weeks. The ones that test Pollyanna to see how strong she really is. (Pollyanna would be my inner happy child. Or so Hellie dubbed her and now I've embraced the moniker.) Last week was one of those weeks.

Teenage Kiddo
My daughter his teenage-dom in July. If that doesn't garner your sympathy, nothing will. We've hit some bumps already and these mood swings are enough to give a person whiplash. I offered to buy a school supply last night and you'd think I asked for a blood sample. WTH??

Then my beloved Bumblebee got sick. (That would be my 15lb orange Tabby.) I spent all day Thursday at the ER Vet clinic racking up a ginormous bill to find out it's a hairball that won't pass. Lovely.

Later in the week I realized my floor was hemorrhaging water and it was coming from my air exchanger. Which led to having to turn off the air until I could get it fixed. Nothing like mid-90s with high humidity over a holiday weekend with no air to help you sleep at night. (Too much sarcasm? No?)

Bumblebee reading Jill Shalvis
Then Sunday came around. Kiddo's mood came up a notch, a neighbor told me how to fix my water issue which led to the return of air conditioning (after buying three fans *sigh*), and Bumbles starting eating and acting like himself again.  

But the best turnaround was the writing. For the first time in a couple weeks, I put words on the page. As soon as I looked up and realized there were a thousand new words, everything shifted into place. And I realized something.

I'm not writing because I have to or want to or kind of enjoy it. I'm writing because I need to. And so long as the writing is going, then all the other stuff will fall into place. These tester weeks (as I call them) are not fun, but the trick is not to let them win. Keep the positivity and the words going. And when life gets you down, raise a fist and declare,

MY POLLYANNA IS STRONG!

How about you? How do you handle adversity? Do you notice a difference when you take the time to write compared to when everything else gets in the way? Everyone ready for fall? I know I am!

23 comments:

Marnee Bailey said...

I'm like you. :) I don't let things get me down for long. I might have my stumbling blocks but I force myself to shake them off. There's a reason I'm all, "just keep swimming" all the time. :)

I feel a hundred times better when I write than when I don't. Sometimes I have to force it, but I always feel better after I do it.

I wonder if I'd feel like that if I devoted myself to working out too. LOL!! I'm not going to get crazy, though.

:)

TerriOsburn said...

I wonder that same thing, Marn. The few times I've created a regular workout routine and stuck with it, I felt great. You'd think I'd want to feel that way again. Guess my inner Jillian is NOT as strong as my Pollyanna. LOL!

Janga said...

My inner Pollyanna used to have a much stronger voice than she does now. I sometimes feel as if I've turned into a whiner and chronic complainer, a type I abhor. I'm consciously working on being more positive since I do believe negativity saps energy, at the very least.

Writing makes me feel better if I'm pleased with the product, and this holds true whether the product is a review, a blog post, a research-based article, or several pages in the WIP. On the other hand, if I'm displeased with what I've written, I'm a grumpy bitch. To counteract that tendency, I've added a friend's words to my quote board: "At least you did something." Anything is better than a blank page, right?

Sabrina Shields (Scapegoat) said...

I'm a pretty upbeat girl in the face of adversity as well...BUT when I get down I have to admit I let it take me pretty far down before I claw my way back up. Only seems to happen a time or two each year at least!

Janga said...

Happy Birthday, Marnee! I hope you have a glorious day.

Marnee Bailey said...

Awh, thanks Janga!! :)

MsHellion said...

I love that motto: "MY POLLYANNA IS STRONG!" even if I have renamed MY pollyanna Sophie. :)

Do I get any credit for saying repeatedly this week that this will work out? I mean, not to toot my own--no, I'm tooting my horn, damnit. *I* made you bring pollyanna out of the closet and give her a chance to work when you didn't want to. I'm not saying you're not doing most of the work, but I think even those of us with STRONG POLLYANNAS still need our friends to say, "it's going to work out" because there are weeks that the kid is a hellion, the pet is sick, and my house tried to burn down without my permission. You think for sure you've pissed off a god at the very least.

I wouldn't normally consider myself an "upbeat person" and I find "upbeat" perky people annoying. Or I say they're annoying. I do tend to hang out with them because their positive energy is, well, positive and not draining. And I'm an emotional sponge. *shrugs* At least I try to surround myself with good people.

I do say the more positive people I've surrounded myself with, the more I have begun to "preach the word" as it were and will tell people off for being negative too much or refusing to let an idea go. Or leaving that person so they can't drain me anymore. Focusing on the positive rather than the negative is...well, how you get it done.

I was reading a yoga book--and she referenced the difference between inspiration vs motivation. Motivation is created out of fear. "I fear being a 400 pound fat lady in a circus"--so you diet or "I fear being ordinary and forgotten" so you strive to be published no matter what--but when you're inspired, it doesn't come from fear, it comes from being in tune with the spirit (which I assume is a more positive entity)--and the source to attain your goals doesn't run out like it can if you're only motivated. Motivated seems to have a time limit, but inspiration is a passion for your whole life.

Be positive, be inspired.

MsHellion said...

Happy Birthday, Marn!! I hope you make sure to drag out these birthday festivities all weekend long and there is plenty of cake and wine involved!!

P, Kirby said...

How do I handle adversity? I sit down in the corner of the room, knees to my chest, rocking back and forth, sucking my thumb and mumbling incoherently.

But when I had my wee meltdown back in April, I realized that it was time to stop coming unglued over everything. I made a bunch of lifestyle changes and now, I'm rolling with the punches much better. Pollyanna will never be my personality, because I'm too cynical. More like way more mellow.

I have found, that as a consequence, I'm less tolerant of the negative Nellys, as well. I guess, I look at them and think, there by the grace of Dog, go I. :)

MsHellion said...

Exactly, P! Why does everyone think being cynical is such a bad thing? I consider myself a realist. But I agree more positive realists can get more shit done, so I agree with that route.

I like to think I'm more mellow, but I think (know) my friends would laugh.

Marnee Bailey said...

Thanks Fran! I bought myself my favorite cake! :) It's going to be a good weekend. :)

TerriOsburn said...

Hellie gets total credit for reminding me it would all work out. Which she had to do repeatedly for a couple days. And she was right, which is what will make her even happier to hear. LOL! She loves being right!

Pat - A cross between Pollyanna and Lisbeth Salander. That'll work.

To be clear, I am not some preppy cheerleader type (not that there's anything wrong with that) who bounces around making you want to smack her. I just like to stay positive and have found refusal to give in to the grim makes it nearly impossible for the grim to win!

TerriOsburn said...

You've mentioned cake. Now you must share. *holds out paper plate*

Marnee Bailey said...

Chocolate with vanilla buttercream from Wegmans.

Yummmm...

*passes virtual slices*

TerriOsburn said...

That sounds good! For the record, my boss just took me to lunch and I could have gotten that decadent looking chocolate cake for dessert, but I abstained. I think that earns me a cupcake.

TerriOsburn said...

I could have sworn I'd replied to Janga hours ago. Huh. Wonder what happened.

Yes, Janga, anything is better than a blank page. Only I wish you could see the brilliance in your work that the rest of us can see. (I know, I'm a broken record at this point.) I'll try a guilt trip. You're robbing the world of those beautiful stories. It's SELFISH to keep them to yourself. You should feel horrible and let us have them now. ;)

TerriOsburn said...

Scape - Nothing wrong with being human. That's going to happen. So long as it doesn't happen all the time is what matters. You've bounced back from some hefty life blows. You're one tough cookie!

Evelyn Archer said...

I think staying positive is the way to go, but it can be easier said than done. For me, a (pretty rigid) schedule keeps me on track and helps me feel in control of my life. Staying on my schedule can also be easier said than done, however! ;)

XOXO - Evelyn

TerriOsburn said...

Evelyn, I'm one of those odd people who needs change but must have a strict routine. It's weird, I know. But yes, when my routine is on track, I feel better about everything. Though it seems at this point that stomping out unexpected fires and running around like a crazy woman IS my routine.

Maureen said...

How do I handle stress? I'm considering asking the doc to up my prozac.

But before I do that, I will join a gym and start Weight Watchers, continue the clutter battles and see how it goes.

Marn, I've packed the entire pastry case from the ship and it's on the way for your birthday. Have fun!

Lovely cruise and honestly, I have to remember next time I'm feeling like crap about my life, that the Jewel Gardens in Skagway were so uplifting my smile muscles hurt by the end of that tour... And I got a glass blown octopus!

Pics should be on FB sometime Sunday... Miss everyone and looking forward to being back on line regularly!

Marnee Bailey said...

Oh, Mo. You sweet lovely lady!! :)

JulieJustJulie said...

How about you? How do you handle adversity?
Short play version:
One step at a time

JulieJustJulie said...

And Terri, since you mentioned "stomping" and "running around like a crazy woman" ...