Sunday, December 11, 2011
I know that hearing that single word can really make a difference to how I feel about things and where I will spend my time and effort. Recently, through the different things that I do, I have had the chance to hear that word a few times, and it makes me want to help out just that little bit more.
So many people say that they are too busy to acknowledge the effort of others, but I think these are the people that don't understand that if you want someone to go that extra mile for you, let them know, you appreciate what they do for you. It doesn't take a lot of time to say "Thanks" so even a quick message/e-mail to let them know you appreciate their work can go a long way.
This week was also a little different as I saw some people that I hadn't seen for a number of years and I found out how much they cared about me, as a person. A simple hug, or even a smile and a good hand-shake, says a lot. One person made me realize how much they valued my friendship when I surprised them at work, and I got a lot of hugs from him. You don't always need the hugs, but sometimes it sure does help when you are feeling a little low.
So next time when you appreciate what someone else has done, make sure you say "Thanks" so that they know they are appreciated.
Monday, November 28, 2011
A roller coaster varies in speed and goes up and down, just like life does so often. The roller coaster that I am currently on is trying to do too many things are once and not being able to control them like I feel I should. Yes, I know that in a lot of cases, I am my own worse enemy because instead of trying to focus on one thing and get it off my to-do list, I am trying to figure out a bunch of them at once.
It is interesting to think about my life as a roller coaster because sometimes I think life goes off the track, but in most cases it's just my thinking that goes off. Knowing what I can and cannot handle or control is something that is difficult for me to see sometimes. In a lot of cases, I am worrying about things that I cannot control instead of focusing on the things that I can control and manage. Being able to sit back and think things through is something that I don't always do as well as I would like, but I am getting better at it.
A roller coaster is supposed to be fun, so I guess life should be fun as well, instead of something that I am always worrying about. Knowing that I can accept things as they are is important, and enjoying the little pleasures in life along the way are what I need to focus on.
Now off to enjoy the ride.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Things sometimes get out of control, and it takes some time and effort to get things back to the way that makes you happy. This is a challenge for a lot of people, and that is taking the time to get things back to where they should be. I have encountered just this challenge in the last couple of weeks, and now I am taking the time to sit and think.
It is sometimes the hardest thing to do, just sit and think because like a lot of people there are always too many other things that need to be done. Having a chance to refocus and understand what has happened and why helps make the future a little easier. The challenge I was facing was dealing with an online course that was not well-designed or executed. My choice was to continue with the online course and suffer through it, or to walk away and know that I did what was right for me. The decision came this week when after a couple of major frustrations with the course, I decided that I couldn’t continue with it and needed to walk away. I contacted the university that was offering the course and explained my feelings to them. I also had to write an e-mail explaining everything, and then I was refunded my course fee and am no longer taking the course. I have taken other online courses through colleges and never felt this way about the course, instructors, or material before, so this was extremely hard for me to deal with.
The course was something that I really wanted to take, but understood that if I wasn’t learning anything and just getting frustrated, it wasn’t a course worth taking. Maybe part of it was feeling that the instructors didn’t understand the material, or maybe they weren’t comfortable with online training. I know that I was really frustrated with the length of time the assignment took to be marked and even how long it took to get answers to e-mails. The length was a lot longer than I ever dealt with during any of the other courses I took. This is the first course that I have tried to take through a university, and it sure wasn’t the experience I wanted.
I know that having a Certificate for Instructing Adults makes it a little different for me taking courses know because I understand what is expected from instructors. I have taken courses and seminars where the instructor has been great, and somewhere the instructor wasn’t the best, but normally I learned something anyway. This online course was proving to be a course where I wasn’t going to learn, so I am happy I decided to walk away.
I have taken some time, figured things out and understand why I was unhappy the last couple of weeks. Now, maybe I can focus on the things that make me happy, and I realize that taking the time to sit and just think was the best thing I could have done today.
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
The purpose of backing up a computer system is to ensure you have the most complete, consistence and accurate copy of files as possible as a set.
Backing up a computer system should be done at a time of day that results in the fewest files and users being impacted. Most small/medium companies back up their files late at night to ensure the highest accuracy, completeness, and consistency of data sets.
Backing up systems during the day or just after the normal end of a business day can result in some files not getting backed-up for days if they are files that are updated continuously during the day. Open file agents are still not 100%. It is important to remember that the purpose of a backup is to have an accurate copy of files in case a restore of a file or an entire system is required.
A backup schedule late at night means the fewest users and files impacted. It is important to remember that a backup done during a business day impacts users by slowing down response time and files, and results in an incomplete backup. Some data sets are spread among multiple files, if they are not backed up with the same consistency state, then they are as good as corrupted, a typical example are databases.
The scheduling of a backup isn’t when it’s convenient for the system administrator, but when it’s best for the specific business. I have heard of system administrators setting their backup schedule so that they can see it start (tail wagging the dog).
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
It's hard to think of taking a bit of downtime in the middle of a crazy day, but it does help. Being able to escape from the chaos can really assist in getting a clearer head and refocusing. I am not saying take hours, but sometimes even 5 or 10 minutes away from everything demanding your attention helps. A walk around the office or a refresh of your glass of water can help. If you can't get away, then just closing your eyes and taking a few deep breaths can help clear your head and make the tasks a bit easier.
I know that life demands us to juggle several things at once, but managing how many items being juggled is what is important. I, for one, have had a habit of trying to juggle too many things at once, resulting in a feeling of everything crashing down on me sometimes. In some cases, writing down what needs to get done really helps. Remembering to take the time to refocus also helps.
Setting time for yourself is extremely important to help deal with all the demands now-a-days. To tackle the days when there are too many things to get done, remember "Take a deep breath and tackle one thing at a time." Taking time to regroup and refocus is what we all need to do.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
I know that we have had to set our mobile devices to automatically turn off at night and on in the morning, otherwise we would be woken up in the middle of the night by the notification of new messages. Also, setting which accounts notify us of new messages has also made managing messages a little easier. The other practice we have is if we are in meetings we are only notified when specific accounts get messages and this is done by setting our notification to silent mode, so it only vibrates. Yes, we have more than one account that goes to our mobile device.
Being able to take some time away from constant contact can be so rewarding. I think people understand that sometimes answers aren't going to be immediate no matter how hard they try.
Have you ever got a phone call from someone right after they have sent you can email? Normally the call is a repeat of the email or a request for an answer immediately. These normally are the emails that require some research before an answer can be given.
It is important to remember that one means of communication can fail, so if it is URGENT to communicate with someone, ensure you try to communicate with them in more than one method. Emails sometimes don't get through due to technical issues same as texting or instant messages or the person is in an area with low or no reception. So remember, if it's urgent, try multiple methods of communication.
So before I have everyone yelling, remember how we communicate before email and cell phones. It did take a bit longer to get an answer, but we survived.
Make sure that you sometimes take a little bit of a break from being constantly reachable. Everyone needs a break every once in a while, so respect others when they take a bit longer to reply to a message. We don't know everyone's total schedule, so understand you aren't going to get immediate responses each time you send out some communication.
Modern communication has made things easier in a lot of ways because we can get the message anywhere, but remember we still need time to get other things done. So maybe one day we won't be saying, "there isn't enough time to get everything done." Until that time, understand the demands on everyone's time and remember you're not the only one asking for their attention.
Thursday, October 6, 2011
As part of our business, we decided it was time to set up a small executive office and have a place to call our own, besides home. Today we worked on getting everything set up, and now I am sitting at a desk in an office where I should be able to do more and more writing.
I am looking forward to seeing what I will be able to accomplish here in a nice, relaxing, and quiet environment. I know the next couple of weeks aren't going to be as productive as I would like, but at least I know I have a place to go to when I need to escape home.
I know that it is going to be different getting up some mornings and instead of heading into where I sit at home and do some of my work, I will get onto a bus and head into our office where I can focus on what needs to get done instead of what happens to get done that day.
Now to wrap up for today and see what lies ahead tomorrow. I know that things are going to be different, but I must admit, having a clean desk is so nice. Maybe now, instead of juggling too many things, I will be able to juggle less and accomplish more.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
The chair I am sitting in is a "Muskoka chair" and there is something about these chairs that is so different. Maybe it's most of them are made of wood, or maybe it's the chair seems to hug you and lets you relax. An excellent spot to use a muskoka chair is where you can sit and watch life go on around you, but preferably facing a lake.
Sitting and overlooking a lake gives you the opportunity to slow down and even dream. There is something about seeing a muskoka chair by the water, it is so welcoming and inviting. Curl up in a muskoka chair and let your mind drift as it may, and enjoy the feeling.
My dream time in the chair is over for today, but I will return to one of these chairs soon.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Taking a train instead of another mode of transportation can be such a change. It may not be any faster than driving, but it gives you a chance to relax and see things differently. A train can sometimes take you through areas where there isn't a road close by, and other times you will be right beside a road.
Trains have been around for years, and it is amazing how many people have never taken a train other than their community trains, such as Go Transit or TTC. A train will get you to small towns and communities where commercial flights don't go, and show you a different view of things.
I have taken a train between cities, and I found it so relaxing, and it gives you time to think, work or recharge. Listening to the sounds of the train can also be a soothing sound.
The whistle blows again in the distance, and now it fades away. An adventure is happening for someone and someone else may be left behind only to see the train fade away in the distance.
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
This is something that has always amazed me, and it recently happened to me. We were out, and it started to rain while we were in a store. Yes, I could have maybe waited under an overhang to see if the rain let up or stopped, but what's the fun in that. What is a little bit of rain when it's hot out. So, instead of waiting like others were doing, we decided to run to the car. Running through the parking lot and splashing through puddles made me start laughing as it brought back wonderful memories. Of course, everyone that saw us running either looked displeased or shocked, but it was fun.
Being able to find joys in the simple things in life can add so much joy to your life. So, maybe, the next time it rains, and it's warm out, run through some puddles for fun. Who cares what the other people's reactions, and know at least you are having some simple fun.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
A blog can also be used as a method of getting feedback from others on ideas for articles or stories. If you are going to use a blog in this manner, you must be prepared for both positive and negative feedback.
Blogging can also help in resolving writer's block, as it's a means of getting ideas documented and available for future use. A blog can be a public method of tracking ideas which can be easily accessed no matter where an individual is, as internet access is all that is required to retrieve information. Looking back through even a personal blog can spark ideas and bring back memories.
One thing I see people forgetting is that once they post something on the internet, it's available for everyone to see. Some memories are best to be documented privately and not through blogs, as they will be around for years to come. An example of this is writing about a child and their activities, as this information will be available when this child grows up, and would they really want the embarrassing stories/activities known by everyone.
Blogging can be a great method of sharing information, but it's important to think about what you are posting. A blog if on the internet can be available to search engines, so it can be found by anyone, not just by those who follow you.
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Sometimes I think I should have a bunch of different lists to help me see I am getting things accomplished. Maybe the lists should be: today, this week, soon, at some point, possible future items and dreams. Maybe splitting things out like this would help me feel that I am truly getting things done.
If I had a To-Do for just today, maybe I would see results while the other lists could grow. I know, in perfect time management, you make your to-do list for your work day late in the day before. I find in IT we write up a to-do list the day before only to have it totally destroyed the next day due to issue that need our immediate attention. Maybe in real life a weekly to-do list is the best because then you can concentrate on getting things done but still have some structure to your week.
A To-Do List is supposed to assist you in accomplishing things, not adding additional stress to your life. As both an IT and a non-IT professional, I need to be flexible to meet the different demands on my time, but also get things off my to-do list.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Accepting the change can be a challenge because of all the unknowns that are involved. I know I am one of those that likes to know some of what is ahead. In our life as IT professionals, we must try and foresee what's ahead sometimes, so we can handle the change and run with it.
The current road for IT professionals has lots of different curves and bumps involved, but it's the handling of them that sets people and companies apart. Having the ability to accept some change and learn about it is extremely important. Individuals or companies that just stick with the old ways of doing things will either fail or will eventually have to adjust and have a hard time doing so to meet the needs of their clients, or they risk losing their clients.
Being able to slowly adjust to the current changes in IT makes it a lot easier to handle. Knowing that IT is going to keep evolving is something to accept and is a road that needs to be taken, and how to handle the changes is up to you.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
We decided to watch what a couple of our friends posted, and boy did we ever learn a lot, even when looking as just an anonymous connection. Examples of what we saw were being able to locate them at various times during the day as well as figure out their upcoming events. One person even posted what they would be doing on the Labour Day weekend, so people knew when they would be home and away, therefore communicating when their house was empty. This post was sent a couple of days before the weekend instead of after the weekend. If people want to post their events in their status line, it is best to post them there afterwards.
So many posts are telling people when their house will be vacant. One social network site did tell people to stop posting their whereabouts, but it still continues. These are the people that if something happens to them are going to say I didn't realize what I was doing. Posting where you are at various times of the day makes you very traceable. Can someone tell when you leave your home, arrive at work, leave work, attend other events and then arrive home? If you post your location more than once a day, the answer is likely "Yes". Some people are even using applications that map where they are at a given time. If you do this daily, people can monitor it for a couple of weeks and therefore know your daily and weekly routines.
People want to tell their friends what they are up to, but not everyone on the social networks are there for good. On some social networks, you don't even have to be connected with an individual to see what they post. Even if you believe your posts are private today, there is no guarantee that they won't be made fully public tomorrow.
The management of posting on social networks needs to be communicated to employees of companies as well, so that staff is not posting confidential information on the social networks. So many people figure that they can trust everyone who can see their posts, but that isn't true. Some people try to friend everyone and some of these people they don't really know, so how can they really trust these people. How many people friend anyone even if they don't know them, just so they have hundreds and hundreds of friends or followers (too many)?
Another interesting item is that people use their corporate identity for their personal comments. Remember, if you say something in fun to someone, it could damage your professional identity as other people do see it. Never post comments about a company on the internet if it isn't part of your job, as it could be there forever. A company's identification should be used for professional use, such as announcing different events, example restaurants or retailers announcing events. It is very important to remember that a single comment on a social network could damage a person both professionally and personally, such as get you fired (or worse).
A key piece of information that people don't realize is that if they post their address and/or their date of birth including year or your mother's maiden name, they are giving away enough information for identify theft. If you want to include your date of birth, just post your day and month. Your friends will know how old you are, and other people don't need to know this information. Other pieces of information that you should not post are where your children go to school, activities they are involved in, or their date of birth. Imagine their surprise if, when they try to get credit in the future, they find out that someone has been using their identification for years and no one knew. A second reason for not posting a lot of information about your children is that this information then is totally available for people that could harm your children.
So before you become a victim, please limit what you post on social networks sites because you don't know who sees it. Remember, even your blog can be read by anyone, so a lot of the tips apply to blogs as well.
A door with a lock is no more secure than a door without one, if the lock is not engaged. Are you using your locks or are you leaving your doors open with banners overheard saying "pick/steal me"?
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
I am one of those that tries to make sure that everything is done that involves others, but I forget that I need to focus on myself sometimes to get that recharge that everyone needs. It's been a challenge for me to remember that I need to put myself first sometimes, and I am slowing learning that if I want to have the energy to do everything else I need to put myself first, so I can recharge.
The goal over the next few days is to try and focus some time on things that I want to do for myself and make sure that I take those times as I know it will help me in the long run. I am putting this in writing so that I make sure that I do it and over the next three days which includes today I am setting aside 3 hours each day to do things for me. Now, to make sure that I really do this, I am going to set appointments with myself to ensure that I remember to take this time.
The me time is going to be set aside to try and write a bit more than I have done lately, or even to read or to do anything that is just for me. Appointments have been set until Friday of this week, so will see how it goes and will post an update after this week is up.
Friday, July 22, 2011
I have been looking at blank pages on my computer and my iPad and nothing has been written, but the ideas are in the brain fighting to come out. People think it's easy to write, but some days it's a lot harder to make sense of anything.
Lately I have been trying to focus on the easier things that make me happy, hoping that it will assist in getting the brain in some order, but so far, no luck. I think I need to just write all the little bits of ideas down and see what happens with each of them. Some may end up as something while others may end up in the garbage, but that's fine.
So for the next couple of weeks I am going to focus on relaxing and see how that helps. Maybe just giving the mind a bit of a break is all that I need. I will always have something to record my thoughts handy because that should help as well.
Friday, July 15, 2011
Remember, I did say relaxing dinner. It was nice and relaxing until some people were seated near us and the entire experience changed. The table was two mothers and two little girls (maybe around 3–4 years old). As soon as I saw the way one of the mother's talked to her daughter, I knew we were in for some trouble. Within minutes, the little girls were running up and down the restaurant and were only told "don't run". This warning was told to them after they almost ran into a server carrying drinks on a tray.
The "don't run" turned into two girls on their tip toes almost running around for quite a while and also screaming. Again, "don't run" was warned to them, but it took quite a while before the other mother finally got up and got the girls to come back near their table.
When people go out for dinner with children, I know that the children get bored, but please ensure that you have something for the children to do to keep them entertained at your table. I have seen some parents bring portable DVD players or iPads so that the children can watch videos to keep them happy, and I know as another guest in the restaurant I also appreciate this.
I know it's hard to keep children entertained through a meal, but please remember parents that other people are also going out to enjoy their meal.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Sitting and people watching can be so much fun because you can imagine a conversation based on hand gestures or a volume of a voice. You can see people who are in love, people who are having fun and people who are angry with each other.
Watch how people walk. You will see some with theirs heads up walking with a purpose, some walking looking at their feet and others walking as if they have no cares in the world. To really see people with no cares in the world, watch children walk around and see their smiles and hear their laughter. The best place to watch children with no cares is in a park playing. Maybe we as adults need to be like children sometimes and forget even for an hour all about the pressures we are dealing with.
Too often, when we hear someone humming or singing a song softly, we think, "Why are they doing that?" Maybe this person is taking that break from their stresses and enjoying something that makes them happy or even brings back nice memories.
Learning to take the breaks and doing something that makes you laugh, or smile is important. We can't live always at full speed, otherwise we miss too much of the actual world around us. Spending a bit of time at a slower pace will help recharge the personal batteries, but also let you see things a little differently.
Sunday, July 3, 2011
What I did see this weekend is a lot of people have been showing their pride in being a Canadian or even living here in Canada if they are not yet a citizen. Our neighbourhood has been surprisingly quiet, and I know I have taken advantage of that by relaxing.
Being born here in Canada, I don't know what it's like to live in another country or even what it's like to live in a different province. Seeing families spend a day together, is nice, in this busy world we live in. I know that we spent Friday without using our computers, (I set that rule for this year) at all, which in some ways was hard to do, but I think it did both of us a world of good. Yes, our blackberries were still on and if someone needed us for work we would have answered, but doing things away from our computers was nice. I also heard that one family had a no TV rule on Friday so that the family could spend time together. Maybe that is what is needed more often, a time set aside for a family to just be a family without all the influences of today's world getting in the way.
Well, before the quiet in our neighbourhood comes to an end, I am going to go and enjoy sitting outside for a bit longer. Yes, the computer is going to stay inside where it belongs.
Sunday, June 26, 2011
- Business co-owner
I am getting better at moving myself up on the list, but it's taken a lot of work on my part. I have started to realize that if I don't take the "ME time" I'm not going to be everything else that I say I am.
Learning to put things in priority has been a challenge because I always put everyone else's needs ahead of my own. Having to say "NO" is something I have also had to learn to do when I am doing everything I can and someone asks me to do more.
Having some time for myself is still a challenge, and I so often feel guilty when I take it. I feel I should be doing something else that needs to get done. What I don't say to myself is, "you are doing something important". My biggest excuse for not taking the "me time" is I have something else that needs to get done.
I am going to work harder at ensuring that I look after myself and do things for myself more often. By doing this, I know I will be a happier person and I will be able to get all the other things done.
So who I am is ME and I will remember that when I am taking some time to recharge, think and do things that make this individual happy.
Friday, June 3, 2011
The centre lane of some roads is used as a two-way left-turn lane. This lets left-turning vehicles from both directions wait for a chance to turn without holding up traffic. To use a two-way left-turn lane, follow these steps:
- Signal and move into the centre lane shortly before your turn. Slow down.
- Carefully move forward to a spot opposite the road or driveway where you want to turn.
- Make your turn when the way is clear.
I posted these instructions in my blog because I am getting extremely frustrated with people that use the centre turn lane as a normal lane and figure that they have the right of way when they aren't turning. I have been sitting outside lately and watching people drive around our area and noticed that this is a regular occurrence.
It's amazing to watch people drive in the turn lane when there is no spot for them to turn left in one direction (where I can see from my viewpoint). The turn lane seems to be considered an express lane, they are using it to go straight, and the car is normally going faster than the surrounding cars. We have experienced trying to make the left turn into our driveway and a car driving in the turn lane in the other direction and there are no driveways for them to turn into. I know that there is a curve in our road and sometimes a car is partway in the turn lane to avoid parked cars, but they aren't driving a great distance in the turn lane. We have witnessed a car driving past four or five buildings and being in the turn lane when there is no traffic in the normal lane.
The other interesting point about this turn lane is some people don't even use it to make left turns from. They block the traffic behind them in a normal lane and then make their left turn from there and never use the turn lane.
I am concerned that there is going to be a major head-on collision in this lane because people are using it for the wrong reason. If you need to use it to pass a car trying to park, please do so slowly, as this isn't a racetrack.
Remember the centre turn lane is to be used for making left turns not for driving in.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
People don't seem to realize that once they have taken the cart off the property, they have stolen it. The removal of a shopping cart from store property is stealing, as it is something that doesn't belong to you.
I live in a high-density area, and it is amazing to see all the shopping carts left in different parking lots. People figure they can also take the shopping carts into apartment buildings. This is against fire regulations and people seem to ignore this as it isn't something people are educated about.
It is amazing, but almost on a daily basis I can hear the sound of the cart wheels going over cracks in the surrounding sidewalk. Therefore, it means another people has stolen a cart.
Some stores even have the carts that the wheels lock at certain areas and the cart no longer rolls. I have seen one of these carts being dragged along the street to get the groceries home. The locking device must only work for so long because I have also seen these carts being pushed around the neighbourhood and the wheels are rolling freely.
This past weekend, someone wanted to bring a shopping cart into our building to use it in helping them move out. This event resulted in a heated argument between our building superintendents and the person. The person figured there was no problem using the cart, so the police were called, and no cart was brought into the building. We supported the superintendents because the carts aren't allowed, and they are left in the halls and such, which is a fire hazard.
Things I have seen moved on a shopping cart are:
- Full size beds (box spring and mattress)
- Kitchen furniture
If you are unable to carry your groceries home, purchase a bundle buggy or something similar. The buggy then belongs to you, and you cannot be fined for having stolen property in your possession. When you are moving, invest in a small wheeled cart designed for moving furniture and boxes. They aren't expensive, and you can always lone it to friends who are moving.
So please leave the shopping carts where they belong. This helps everyone and helps keep the overall cost of items down.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
One thing I think these people see if someone who shows a level of confidence which I do try and show out in public. What I don't show is someone that sometimes wants to just hide and not deal with people.
The parts that people see are the parts that I am a little more confident about. I do a lot of crafts so that part of me is something I do show a bit more than other parts. What most people haven't known about me is that I have competed with some of my crafts and ribboned. I don't say that a lot because it isn't something that I have the comfort in talking about. I am shy and an introvert, so talking about my accomplishment isn't something that I am comfortable doing.
The fear of someone wanting to be like me when there is still so much of me to discover is hard, but I do know that these people must think a lot of me to want to follow in my footsteps.
The journey that I am taking is something that I know I need. I need to find my passions, and hopefully I can turn some of my passions into part of my job but more so a part of my life and who I show the public.
Friday, May 27, 2011
I am going to try and also work on my writing on this blog so it will be an exercise for me to write as often as possible. Now to really see how often I end up posting on this blog.