<![CDATA[Margie Harding - Home]]>Fri, 23 Jun 2017 06:17:42 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Creating A Sustainable Life On Mars]]>Tue, 13 Jun 2017 16:22:20 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/creating-a-sustainable-life-on-marsPicture
     We’ve been hearing for years about the over population problem the United States will likely be facing over the next decade or two.  What is interesting is how varied the population is from state to state, or even how populated the cities are, compared to outlying areas.  The cities are so congested, it causes crime to be high, parking spaces low, with homeless people living in hovels, garbage visible on the streets, poor air quality, along with concrete or asphalt everywhere with limited yard space.
            One of the options that has people talking, is creating a living environment on Mars.  I am not scientifically savvy and this very idea frightens me.  But according to an article I read, “Terraforming of Mars,” scientists believe they have the potential ability to work out the problems  through artificial means, so this might be a viable solution to overpopulation.
        There are lots of issues with the adventure of human colonization outside the atmosphere that currently sustains us.  Some of the challenges would include tapping into the water scientists are certain exists on Mars, and garnering required energy from the Solar System and other natural resources.  The low gravity found on Mars creates problems for retaining proper atmospheric pressure compatible for humans.  Solar radiation and space weather are more difficulties; yet there are those who believe the day will come when Mars could potentially be supportive of human occupants.
         The very idea of something so dramatic boggles my very un-scientific mind!  Of course, I’m sure the same thing was said when Thomas Edison introduced electricity, when the Wright Brothers proclaimed they would have a flying machine, and the computer gurus who insisted even ordinary families across the world would have a computer in their home.
        When I was a child, I remember a TV show called ‘The Jetson’s.”  It was a “comic strip” type of show where a family, including children and a dog, along with their robot who took care of the house, lived in outer space.  They traveled in space machines to and from work, and wherever else they needed to go.  That was fantasy; pure fantasy.  But here we are, decades later considering the possibility of a viable community on another planet.  Is it still fantasy?
         Our earth is placed in the solar system at the perfect degrees from the sun so we are not ‘over heated’ (even though there are days when some would disagree—especially when the humidity is very high, making the heat index intense!), and set so cooling can come to ease the heat of the day, at night.  Weather phenomenon happens all the time, but not where we have to create an artificial atmosphere of usable air for us to breathe.  Our soil is conducive to plant growth for both human and animal consumption and the oceans are teaming with aquatic animal life just right for their viability. 
         Who are we, mere humans, to think we have right, even if we have the ability, to create another habitat suitable for human sustainability on another planet?  Perhaps I am archaic, but I shudder at the thought, even though I have no issue with space exploration.  I realize that sounds like a contradiction since, my very un-scientific mind, has no idea what can be gained by doing so. 
         How do you feel about the possibility of creating a ‘world’ on another planet where humans can live productively?  Do you believe it is ethical?  In your view, is it even a likely scenario?

<![CDATA[Good Books Are Forever Friends]]>Tue, 06 Jun 2017 20:50:23 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/good-books-are-forever-friendsPicture
​My son said once, “Everyone should have a good library.”  I’ve always agreed with this concept and love collecting books.  I have a variety of pleasure reading books, many classics, educational (I told my kids when they were in college, I didn’t want them to sell back their books!  I wanted to study!) writing books, encyclopedias, inspirational, and those I consider my favorites I read again and again.
Our family recently did some “room switching” and I found myself unloading all the books from the bookshelves in my den, to move them to another room.  I was astounded first, at the amount of books I own, and second, how quickly weight gets beyond my lifting, in boxes filled with books.
But as I re-placed my books on the shelves, each one had a peculiar way of drawing me into their company!  They are like my forever friends who are warm and comfortable no matter how long between visits.  My books are happy when I open their covers and sit down to visit a while.  They bring comfort, adventure, education, inspiration and a sense of companionship. 
I admit I don’t read nearly as much as I’d like…..at least in the sense of opening a book and sitting for any significant time span.  I read in fits and spurts, much like I write.  Much of what I read is either research or ‘how-to!”  Sometimes, however, I just need to remove myself from the daily grind, and busy schedule and allow myself to journey into another place, while joining the heart of the protagonist in the story. 
Books are a place of adventure without ever leaving my room.  To ride a train, or hot air balloon, experience a town in the Old West before it became “civilized” is invigorating and stimulating, when my own nature is afraid.  It’s even safe to say, after reading through a new adventure, it often raises the interest so that I contemplate experiencing something different, in spite of my fear.
Even as a little girl, I remember my favorite stories being about the pioneers and settling in an unknown land.  When I imagine what it might have been like to cross the country in a covered wagon, facing all the dangers from the elements, crossing rivers, foraging for food and yet keeping my sanity, it frightens me to the core, while at the same time, exhilarates me!  It is in books like these I can find encouragement and inspiration to face my fears, even if it has nothing to do with the actual content of the book. 
When reading a ‘how-to’ book I am grateful for the knowledge and help someone else was willing to put in print that I might learn and here again, face my fears. Learning should be a lifetime journey and books are an invaluable source.  They are non-judgmental when I fail, and allow me to pick them up and read them again. 
Books are always ready to reveal their wealth and allow my mind to wander where it will, with the descriptions given between their covers.  It’s up to me to choose to invite them into my world, just like I invite any human friend to share time with me.  
I encourage you, to choose to read a book!  Find an old friend, visit a while and be exhilarated, inspired or educated. 

<![CDATA[People Talk]]>Tue, 30 May 2017 20:14:22 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/people-talkPicture
         I heard the story about a woman who had committed to baking a cake for her church fund raiser.  She forgot about it until the last minute and in haste found a cake mix in the cupboard to bake while doing other things.  When she went to check on the cake, it flopped.  Not having time to bake another cake she improvised and placed a roll of toilet paper into the center of the cake, put icing on it, was delighted with how it looked, and considered her effort finished! 

            Before dropping off the cake, she contacted her daughter to arrive at the fund raiser as soon as it opened, purchase the cake and bring it home. The daughter complied, but to her horror discovered she wasn’t first.  The cake had already been purchased!  Mortified she called her mom, who was horrified about the consequences of her “quick fix.” 

            The next few days the woman worried about the cake.  She agonized over what others would think, distressed and tormented over the likely ridicule, and conversations certain her friends would have over the ‘event.’  Sleep eluded her as the demons in her mind shouted demeaning phrases.

            As fate would have it, she was obliged to attend another church function where the hostess had more than once been unkind and reminded those around her of the status she held in the community.  The meal and company, however, was wonderful until to her horror, the cake she “created” was offered for dessert.  She got ready to explain her “creative ability” when another person commented on how beautiful it looked.  Before she could respond, the hostess gleaming with delight, said proudly, “Thanks!  I made it myself!” 

            We all have situations where we “improvise” and later regret our actions.   We then, like the lady in the anecdote, worry about the consequences.  We are concerned about what others think, afraid of the consequences if we get ‘found out,’ wonder how we’ll ever get past the embarrassment, and kick ourselves for not doing things right the first time!

            I had a situation similar to this, yet radically different.  I ran into a high school friend I hadn’t seen in years.  We were chatting in a store she worked when a lady walked up to us, clearly agitated and said, “Can you help me? I’ve been waiting long enough.  I know you (looking at me) saw me.”  I felt horrible.  I honestly hadn’t realized I even saw her or that she was waiting to be ‘served.’  I apologized and left.  Later I sent another message of apology. 

            I wondered if my friend thought I was a horrible person!  Certainly, the customer in the store did.  It bothered me for days, even though my friend said it was not an issue and not to give it any more thought.

            It’s human nature to wonder what other people think.  What makes this worse is when we have inadvertently (or deliberately) done something out of the ordinary or embarrassing!  When we’ve done something we’d rather not admit, and then get ‘found out’ – or think we’ve been found out, our stress level can get crazy!  This can even apply when we are wrestling with our choices, sometimes even down to what we are wearing or our latest hair cut!

            I encourage you to admit when you’ve made a mistake.  It happens to everyone.  But I also urge you understand that people are going to talk, speculate and even misinterpret!  Be yourself and let it go!  You are created uniquely you!  That makes you special and if that is going to make someone "talk," rather than looking at it as a bad thing, consider it a chance to give someone the opportunity to use their creative devices and imagination.   Perhaps your impact will be hugely positive rather than something unpleasant!

<![CDATA[Cursive--An Ancient Skill No Longer Necessary?]]>Tue, 16 May 2017 20:14:10 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/cursive-an-ancient-skill-no-longer-necessary
​            I watch while my first-grade granddaughter slowly and deliberately copies the words from her cursive lesson.  It isn’t her favorite subject, but she does it well.  Her sister, in third grade does a remarkable job and over the past months has become fairly proficient in her technique.  As I marvel at their progress, I remember my own efforts when learning cursive in early elementary school.  There were some letters I struggled to write correctly.  Looking at my handwriting style now, it’s legible and some would say neat, even though I don’t slant the letters as taught, so many years ago. 
            A young mother recently posted a question on Facebook open to all teachers about why schools are deleting the lessons of cursive from our children’s education.  It’s a valid question.  Some responders were surprised to learn it was no longer being taught, but offered the idea to teach it at home if they felt the need for their child to learn it. 
            Our culture is changing.  One person who commented, was a student who changed school systems after moving to another county.  Her previous school used--even required, cursive.  In her new county, she had to re-write a paper and remove the cursive style of writing before it would be accepted.  Another person commented that her teenage daughter had to sign a legal form for a driving permit and signing her name, left her horribly embarrassed, because the writing looked like that of a pre-kindergartener. 
          One person went so far to say in an article, written for the Washington Post in April 2013, that cursive has become as “ foreign as ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics.”  That’s quite the statement!  But as technology continues to ramp forward, and students bring iPad’s, computers, iPhones and other technological equipment into the classroom (this is especially apparent in the college setting) hand writing as we know it, is changing!
         The loss of this skill is huge!  There are historical documents, those who do not learn cursive will never be able to read!  They can certainly resort to the computer to read what the documents contain, but they can never actually read the penned manuscripts.  That may sound petty, but consider the weight of the documents:  The Declaration of Independence and census records; Lincolns’ Gettysburg Address; Lewis and Clark’s Journals; a letter from Queen Elizabeth to President Eisenhower, or one from Elvis to President Nixon.  The letters you may think irrelevant, but they are history!
         Perhaps learning to write in cursive does seem like too much to learn to our young people!  But when you begin taking away those things that develop motor skills and even patience and discipline, a person can’t help but ask, what’s next?  We already don’t teach Home Economics in school anymore.  Why should we?  Anyone can go to the store and buy food readymade; simply throw it in the oven or microwave.  
        My point is this.  Perhaps those who fight so hard for removing cursive from the curriculum because typing on the computer has become the “new normal” in our lives are right, but only to a degree.  There is still something to be said for learning the “art” of cursive writing.  It not only carries on tradition, but it helps define who we are; teaching discipline and patience----and of course, we need it to write our signature.   
         How do you feel about children learning cursive in our schools?  Do you think it’s a valuable and viable skill or is it an ancient tradition no longer needed?

<![CDATA[Follow Your Dream]]>Tue, 09 May 2017 19:32:39 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/follow-your-dreamPicture
  ​         I heard a conversation recently about a young man who wanted to become a poet, but the father, very much the mountain man, wanted the son to be like him.  The son tried to make his father understand, but the father felt like  his son would be less a man if he didn’t want hunting and working in something concrete.  The father was sure being a poet or writer of any sort would never provide the funds needed for his son to raise a family.  He would need a solid trade like wood working, trapping/hunting or even farming.  Anything less than this was unacceptable.
            Many young people have faced this kind of situation.  It takes a strong father to see his passionate child for the different person he is.  One such child was an Italian physicist, Guglielmo Marconi.  As a young person he experimented with his ideas of radio wave transmission after studying physics and reading about experiments of others in this field.  He was not encouraged in his chosen field of study and had detractors who completely believed he would fail.  Instead of failing, however, he went on to co-win the Nobel Prize in physics in 1909.
            Determination for something we feel passionate about can be extremely difficult when we don’t have support from those we depend on, for what we believe in.  We feel like the lack of support means we are certain to fail.  When the disapproval comes from someone we love, we feel unloved and sometimes generate a prophetic situation, because we give up and prove those without faith in our dreams, right.
            Following our dreams can be difficult without including the lack of encouragement from those we care about.  Often there are financial elements, sometimes physical and logistical factors, lack of preparation, our fear of failure, self-doubt, societal issues and influences, even the fear of success, and sadly, an overwhelming wave of discouragement when we don’t get the support from those we count on the most.  And once doubt gets a ‘toe-hold’ it often not only refuses to let go, it morphs into a giant obstacle, in its own right.  It sets us up for failure.
          My point is this.  Our dreams make us who we are.  As a young person we may have several ideas about who or what we want to become.  As we mature, those ideas change, turn, and grow into our passions.  Our passions are what drives us.  They are important and become a part of our inner-most being.  Don’t let anyone steal your dream!  If you believe in it, go for it! 
        It’s likely not going to be easy.  You will probably encounter nearly every obstacle mentioned and some that aren’t.  Stay focused, plan, prepare, research, believe in yourself and the abilities you were gifted with….and stay focused!  I repeated that phrase because it’s so easy to give up, lose sight of what’s important and allow the space for failure. 
        I encourage you to look at your passion, with the mindset that failing is not an option!  Follow your dream!  Make your mark on the world!  Leave a legacy of determination and grit, while keeping a heart of joy, love and respect despite, who or what you go up against!  Who knows…..  maybe you’ll be the next Nobel Prize winner! 

<![CDATA[Catastrophic World Event]]>Wed, 26 Apr 2017 00:08:28 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/catastrophic-world-eventPicture

            I’ve been reading a lot about the United States economy imploding; even with a prediction that it will happen this year.  I have no idea on the accuracy of such an event, but it’s worth thinking about.  If there was such an occurrence, articles promise food and water shortages, looting, and other violent behaviors.  Money will obviously be another issue, given it is an “economic" implosion, creating all sorts of problems.

Beyond an economic implosion, there are numerous other incidents that would qualify as catastrophic --- or at least create a catastrophic situation.  As I researched, I read about a global pandemic which is a disaster created from a deadly pathogen infecting and killings millions of people. 

A cosmic threat is another possibility we could face.  This catastrophe would be caused by a massive star, planet, asteroid or something else from the Solar System that would hit the earth, and therefore cause an alteration of every living thing on the planet.

There is lots of discussion about our climate; global warming or cooling, depending on who you talk with!  While normal climate change happens over a very long time, there has been evidence of areas where change in a single decade has been noticeable.  Depending on the change, apparently this could potentially create quite an event that is worth noting.

An agricultural crisis, from the growth of world population, is yet another option that creates real issues.  There are studies that project such a catastrophic event; including the need of reducing the population.  I haven’t a clue how that is accomplished, but survival depends on clean water and nutritional food and if our population outweighs food production, we would have a real problem! 

There are other scenarios which offer additional catastrophic situations, like warfare and mass destruction, some kind of experimental technology accident, geomagnetic reversal and others.  Thinking about all the doom and gloom that come with this is not only mind-boggling but a little intimidating!   I have a real hard time imagining such occurrences even happening; and a harder time trying to picture how each individual family might cope and manage such horrific possibilities!

Most of us have more than enough material goods, but do we have enough necessities to survive such disasters like food, medicine, clean water, electricity, etc.?  Do we even think about it?  Accumulating money is worthless if we are unable to spend it to buy supplies we need during a crisis, when there are no supplies. 

Many people have opted to begin ‘planning’ and even ‘preparing’ for such cataclysmic situations.  It takes a bit of research, but there are plenty of sites or books available that explain the basics to preparing for such incidents.

I don’t have the answers to any of the problems we might encounter, should such events take place.  But it might be worth pulling things together, placing important papers in safe places, and covering ‘our bases,’ so should such an event happen, we won’t be taken completely unaware, and could for the immediate future, take care of our families.  I encourage you to take stock of your readiness.  Would you be prepared in case of a catastrophic world event?

<![CDATA[Unlikely Friendship]]>Tue, 18 Apr 2017 17:30:34 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/unlikely-friendshipPicture
            I heard the story about how a prosecutor and a gangster became friends.  When they met, the prosecutor, a successful woman with an indomitable spirit and a lot of grit, was determined to put the man who had become a felon in his youth, used drugs, killed a man and had little respect for the law, behind bars. However, circumstances, determined by a Judge, to have the man participate in a pretrial program, precipitated an unlikely friendship. 

            It didn’t begin as friendship.  Both the prosecutor and gangster brought their own viewpoints to the scheduled meetings, keeping a measured physical distance between each other.  One day, however, the prosecutor made the decision to shorten their physical distance and joined him on the bench he was sitting.  This one act of kindness grew into a mutual respect and acceptance over a period of months.       

            She began seeing him as a young man who had a life of “hard knocks” that were not entirely all his own doing, even though he had to 'own' his personal choices.  He saw a perspective of the law, that included justice, but with kindness and not just a desire to put all young, black men behind bars.

            The young man still had to pay for his crimes, but his manner and attitude toward his ‘situation’ changed.  The prosecutor believed the young man could make the change required to start a new life, and he accepted the challenge.

            Our lives are defined by our choices.  We each have ‘hard knocks’ that can catapult us into situations that left unchecked, can make our lives much different than what we had imagined.   But when someone believes in us, it helps put things in the proper perspective and can help us get back on track.

            This same is true of our children.  As parents we watch (and cringe) while attempting to raise our children right.  It seems no matter how hard we try, our offspring want to take a different path than we’d like.  That’s not a bad thing in itself.  Our children need to be true to themselves, until it becomes a problem of legality or life and death.  We don’t want them to make choices that will put them in prison, even for a day!

            Still, as parents, we need to be available for them, as they grow in knowledge, learn right from wrong, make choices, choose friends, careers and live their lives.  It isn’t always going to turn out right.  But we need to be like the prosecutor who realized, hard knocks come.  We are each still accountable for our actions.  But when our children know without a doubt we believe in them, those ‘hard knocks’ and bad choices are less likely to happen. 

            It’s with delight when we can have a relationship with our children that some might consider an ‘unlikely friendship,’ as we watch them grow and mature into the person they were meant to be.

            Beyond that, as adults we make, even if inadvertently, judgement calls on people we don’t know well.  We judge on their looks, attitude, behaviors, history (if we know it), what others think or what we think they think, geography, our own history and attitudes, and more.  The point is, sometimes our perceptions are skewed by what we don’t know!  I encourage you to be careful with making judgements and when you can, become the friend rather than the adversary.  Perhaps like the prosecutor and gangster, you’ll be able to create an ‘unlikely friendship!”

<![CDATA[Exercise Your Mind]]>Tue, 11 Apr 2017 23:34:12 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/exercise-your-mindPicture
            “You’re gonna love this place,” said my husband.  “They make the best subs and they never write anything down.”

            “Ever?” I asked.

            “Never!  It’s been like that since I was a kid.  It doesn’t matter how many people come in.”

            Skeptical, I walked into the small sub/sandwich shop, after standing in the open door behind a line of others, waiting.  Crowded, people walked around others picking up their orders.  “How can we help you?” asked the girl behind the counter.  Giving her our order, she repeated it, but never picked up a writing tool.  We moved to the side to wait.  “Next,” she said.  Another person gave their order, considerably longer than ours.  Again, she repeated it, but never picked up pencil or pen.  Adding more brown lunch bags on the counter and picking up a finished sandwich, she placed it in one of the bags, filled a drink and added French Fries.   “Here you go, Sir,” she said smiling to a specific customer.  Paying her, he picked up his order and left.  I noted the line was as long out the door as it was when we first arrived.  Still she filled orders, while another cooked.  One other girl was behind the counter helping fill orders.  None of them ever wrote a single thing down.  Looking at my husband, the girl said, “Your order is ready, Sir,” as she handed him our bag.

            I was amazed at the accuracy of the orders, given how complicated some of them were and the number of customers she had spoken to.  “How do they do that?” I asked.  "I have problems remembering what I’m doing from moment to moment, much less any orders!"

            One of my granddaughters is learning her ‘times tables.’   There is a process, but to be able to answer quickly, memorizing the problems with the answers is the only thing a student can do.  I remember in fourth grade being called on during math class and standing to recite my ‘times tables’ in whatever number the teacher designated.  1’s and 2’s were easy, 5’s a cinch, 6’s not bad, 7 through 12 were a bit more challenging.  But we all learned our ‘times tables,’ because the last thing any student wanted, was to be called on and unable to recite quickly.  That was beyond humiliating!

            Our young people still learn the ‘times tables,’ but there isn’t much else that requires memorization requiring reciting.  Since we work so fluently on the computer, everyone knows how to use spell check.  Our young children use calculators in early elementary math classes, and reciting poetry is rarely done anymore and adults use planners every day to keep focused. 

            Why memorize anything?  It may seem, at a young age, it’s ridiculous to memorize ‘stuff.’  Yet, as we age we quickly learn in the work place, it is invaluable!  Consider the professional in the medical field, or an accountant doing taxes, the lawyer remembering specific information, or the scientist doing research or even a teacher in a classroom!  If each of these people had to look up every piece of information before speaking, to assure accuracy, he would never accomplish anything. 

            Aside from the “professional need” aspect, studies have shown using our mind is like using any other muscle in our body.  If we neglect it, it’s going to decay much more quickly.

            Disease may still strike, but it’s reassuring to know, if we work at it, we may be able to counter natural negative effects just like regular exercise will hold physical deterioration at bay!  I challenge you to strengthen your mind by a predetermined decision to exercise it!  Memorize something!  

<![CDATA[Unlikely Role Model]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 21:14:53 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/unlikely-role-modelPicture
            When I was in college, as an older student, I found myself watching and listening to the young people.  Many were distracted, apathetic, and totally unconcerned with the education their parents were paying for.  Homework was often not turned in and contribution in the classroom hardly ever existed, often because they hadn’t read the assignment!

            Role models are important.  They are visuals of what we want to be, perhaps how we want to dress, often impacting career choices, and behaviors, both right and wrong; inspiring, influencing and teaching life lessons.  Due to social media, role models are everywhere, up close and personal!  Many of the role models in our world today rock our world in ways that stun adults, leaving us cold!  Yet our young people gravitate to the latest “trend” and partake of a world, as parents, we wish they’d run from! 

            Young girls are often paranoid about their size and shape before they’ve gotten old enough to know what it’s really all about.  Yet, some celebrity role models can be so sensitive about their appearance, they resort to many plastic surgeries to get “just the right look.”  Even those who don’t resort to surgery use diet trends to ward off any, and all, unwanted pounds (or ounces) because there is an obsession with being thin and having the ‘perfect’ measurements. This sends a message that looks at all cost, is everything. 

            Our young men identify with sports personalities and celebrities, as well.  Yet in this arena we find domestic violence and obsession with money and the drive to win so great, they deliberately inflict pain and cruelty on their opponents. 

            That’s not to say all celebrities or sports personalities are bad role models.  That’s far from the truth, but it seems the wackier, further out of the ordinary, or the most bizarre trends are the ones most likely to be followed.

            In a world before social media, we still had role models.  There were the obvious; world leaders, those who were President (or the wives of the President), those who were wealthy (and that often still applies), those who endured great travels across the country, exceptional nurses, inventors, doctors or those who could fly an airplane! 

            Annie Oakely was an unlikely role model!  While she had a rough childhood from abuse and other misfortunes, she became one of the best sharpshooters in her lifetime, as well as, a successful entertainer! She even attempted to obtain the status of trainer for “women snipers for the US military”!  She was instrumental in helping educate women and orphans through charity, who otherwise would have nothing more than their already sad situations!

            I challenge you to consider your own role models and those of your children’s.  How do they measure up?  Do they represent good moral life lessons? Are they inspiring you to lead, be productive, positive and helpful, or do they leave you questioning if their behavior is even acceptable?


<![CDATA[Situations and Destinations]]>Tue, 28 Mar 2017 22:54:22 GMThttp://margieharding.com/home/situations-and-destinationsPicture
            Change is inevitable.  It’s a natural phenomenon.  It happens in the seasons, our daily physical growth and we can witness it in our mental progress.  It also occurs in business, whether good --- or not; but it is still change. We can especially see it in small children.  The growth of a child in ability, size, physical changes and understanding capabilities are unparalleled over the course of that first, single year!

            Change, however, can be stressful.  We can become so “comfortable” where we are, we are frightened by anything that is different from what we know.  But many times, change is necessary, whether by normal or natural circumstances, or from a situation that is uncomfortable or downright awful!

            Some years ago a friend was working as a teacher’s assistant.  The job started nicely enough; the children were great and the teacher was pleasant.  It wasn’t long, however, before the children became unruly and rude.  The teacher had absolutely no control.  The assistant did her best to handle the situation, but it seemed to go from bad to worse as the year moved on.  The problem was compounded by the news from the Principal, himself, that she was hired to bring discipline to the classroom.  That, however, was not in her job description.  It was not her classroom!  The assistant was so stressed, she could hardly wait until June arrived.  It was actually another teacher who said to her, “Hang in there.  Imagine where you will be one year from now.  It won’t always be like this.”

            My friend’s situation is not unique.  There are plenty of other circumstances just as taxing and traumatic!  There is the situation with the individual with PTSD who refuses counseling, a church congregation that is falling apart because of leadership issues, an unwanted career change because current employment status is ending, or a life threatening disease.  Other changes, from a more positive perspective, but none-the-less challenging, complex and demanding, are having a new baby, attempting that book that longs to be written, attending the class you’ve always wanted to take or a move across the country---or across the world!

            The point to all this “change perspective” is about how you handle it.  My friend in the school system felt trapped and unable to do anything about it until the year ended.  Sometimes waiting is the only option, but not always.  If our “mental state” is threatened, then we need to take our struggles and frustration in another direction as quickly as possible; because, usually our situation isn’t going to change unless we do something about it!

            Faith in yourself and your abilities is far better than relying on a magical solution to appear, because it likely won’t!  We have to be our “best friend” and believe that we have the right to create our own paths.  Someone said once, “Always remember that your present situation is not your final destination.  The Best is yet to come.”  -Unknown

          If you are looking for or in need of a change, try to picture where you will be a year from now.  Adequately prepare for the direction you’d like to take, then go for it!  Your happiness may depend on it!