A Series of First’s

Since June 4th I have been on a roller coaster ride of first’s and some lasts as well. Incase you missed it I got married back on June 4th. This is my first marriage and as far as I am concerned my last as well. To quote Luke Dane, “The 0nly way out now is in a body bag.”

Fast forwarding to a couple of weeks ago we purchased our first home. Short of a major promotion this will be our only home that we purchase as well. Full disclosure it was not our first attempt at purchasing our first home. That saga is a story for another time.

For the final first we have to rewind back to the tail end of January when my wife and I found out that we will be having our first child in September. This will not be our only child. Plans are to expand the clan out by at least 2 younglings.

When experiencing each of these first’s it was always a mixed feeling of sheer terror and boundless joy. Imagine Homer Simpson’s patented scream and “woo hoo” back to back if you will. I’m sure everyone that was or will be in my position can sympathize. Still trying to figure out how to “adult”, but soon will also have to figure out how to parent as well.

Motivation

A variety of things motivate me to get things done. At current my inability to fall asleep is motivation to type this BLOG and work on a few other things on the interwebz so that I can hopefully fatigue myself into sleep,  but also have some prep work done for myself so that when I rise in the morning whether it be at my usual waking time or later due to the prolonged departure into dreamland I will either be ahead of the game or on schedule.

Let’s examine something else that helps me stay motivated in the face of irksome tasks and weighty responsibilities. There was a mantra that I learned a few years back the helps keep motivated. “If not you, then who? If not now, then when?” It’s mostly a self application thing for when it comes to work and personal things when I’m feeling unmotivated. In terms of work it comes down to I need to get said objective completed so that:

  1. I am not passing the buck on to someone else. I loath when someone does it to me so I am not going to do it to them.
  2. I am not screwing myself. When at the pharmacy sometimes I am all there is to get the task done so I’m either dumping more work on myself for the next day or later in the day. In terms of teaching it turns into me figuring out how to cram something in again either the next day or later that day and then potentially making some other part of my lesson plan suffer as a result.
  3. In the rare instance where I do have to pass the buck onto someone else my request to complete the task I couldn’t is not meet with chagrin, but instead with an acceptance. The person picking up the ball and running with it for me knows that all best efforts were made not have the shit kicked down hill to them, but are going to get it done anyway.

When it comes to getting my personal chores and other miscellaneous tasks completed I base things around a personal rewards system. I will set rewards out for myself in both the short and the long term. That way I am rewarding myself often enough that I’m not getting a gold star for every little thing, bur also so that I don’t have to ask myself why I’m putting such a prolonged delay on gratification.

These are just a few of my thoughts on how to stay motivated and are pretty much adaptable to most work and life situations. If my thoughts on the subject aren’t helpful then here’s FULL METAL JACKET’S Gunnery Sergent Hartman to help motivate.

I Don’t Like Change

Much like every other human being I am a creature of habit. Although I can easily adapt to a change in my daily routine every once in a while a deviation from the normal path keeps me lost in the woods for a bit. Today was one of those days.

When working in the pharmacy we have a lot of standard operating procedures (SOP’s) to help govern what we do, but to also keep us on a good work flow pace. Occasionally a wrench gets thrown into that, but we can normally adapt to that. Today however, I had to participate in a conference call in the middle of my shift in order to prepare for a project that I am attached to. When I finished with it I tried to return to my normal operations, but found myself kind of walking around with the constant feeling that I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do.

In all reality I pretty much have most days planned out start to finish of what I am going to do. Just makes my life easier. Normally I just use my mental punch list of things that need to be done, but occasionally I will make a more complex list for myself just so I don’t get distracted and keep on grinding. At the same time though I also keep time built into my day to allow for the unexpected deviations that may occur. I also find it helpful to place assign a priority level to the days tasks just incase I find that I need to shelf or way lay something due to time needed to be dedicated to other tasks or again the unexpected getting in the way.

To illustrate my point here’s Stewie from Family Guy.

Good Things Are Happening

Since the start of the new year many good things have been taking place for me. I’m actually going to take a minute get on my soap box and blow my own horn for a bit.

Although the year started off with a bit of a hiccup everything is progressing forward and I can safely say that I have more tally marks in the positive column than I do in the negative one. Despite the current political climate I foresee a maintained positive through the rest of the year as well.

The second best thing I currently have going on for myself is I am currently dropping weight. I have had family tell me in recent months say that it looks like I loosing lbs., but its a little different when it comes from my patients. They don’t see me everyday and they have little to no obligation to actually be nice to me let alone give me a compliment. (Truth be told I’m terrible at taking compliments.)

For those of you close to me who decided to stay on the positivity train with me thanks for being part of it even if I brought you along initially against your will. (Your welcome.) Train leaves the station again tomorrow morning bright and early.

For those who are wondering why I chose the second best thing and are wondering what the hell could possibly be better than getting compliments about weight loss you’ll just have to wait and find out. Like I said lots of good things still to come.

“Keep your stick on the ice. We’re all in this together.” -Red Green

 

Last Man Standing

Since Christmas Eve one family member after another has taken ill for at least 24 hours or more. This includes my work family. One by one I have watched some ailment put them out of commission for an extended period of time. Everyone that is except me.

I am an island on to my own. When some sickness makes the rounds I can normally weather the storm and at worse only have to deal with some of the minor annoying symptoms associated with whatever the affliction is. I’ll have to attribute this to my robust immune system.

Through the pharmacy I have the “pleasure”  of interacting with hundreds of patients in a week and as a result of that their illnesses as well. I’m also exposed to many a students through my teaching endeavors and the illnesses they bring with them to the classroom. I would say my immune system is always working over time combating and adapting to the various illnesses that are hurled my way.

I also never bought into the constant use of hand sanitizer. If memory serves me the CDC and other federal health agencies put out studies saying that people were over doing it. To put a fine point on this I make sure I’m clean and sterile when I need to be, but the rest of the humans on the continent I share with need to calm down with the scrubs and the lotions. Your body does need a certain level or bacteria on it and in it anyway.

It’s like I tell my coworkers and cohorts all the time. Just lick the counter/keyboard and get it over with. The illness is going to claim you anyway just get it over with now. Unless your me and the New York City sewer rats.

Full Ahead

At this point in time I have successfully completed the second hell day in the new year. Generally the first three weeks of the year are a complete shit show in most retail pharmacy settings. Everyone is trying to figure out their new insurances and switch between pharmacies for one of a dozen different reasons.

Comparative to day one it was more successful in the fact that for once I didn’t leave anything hanging that I had to worry about the next shift picking up the ball and running with it. However from the time I walked in till about 5 minutes before close I had to keep the gas petal pinned to the floor along with everyone else. Again, nothing new, but when trying to come back to a normal or just slower tempo after having the throttle pinned for almost my whole shift is somewhat difficult.

When I found myself finished for the day a sense of panic hit me for a second. I still had what seemed like a bunch of wound up energy and was capable of running a gauntlet if need. The volume was stuck at 10 for a minute. Now that I am at home I’m closer to a 6 instead of the 2 I normally am at right before bed. Sleep will just have to take a back seat for now.

 

Distracted Conversation

While listening to one of the Podcasts I enjoy a few days ago it was brought up about people having distracted conversations. They went so far as to compare it to texting while driving with the premise being that since no one is competent enough to text and drive they also aren’t good enough to text and talk at the same time either. I happen to be on the same wave length.

I know for a fact that if I am in the middle of texting someone or doing some sort of work on a computer trying to hold a conversation with me is a lost cause. I will most likely forget any important points or be incapable of answering questions. I will ask whomever needs me to engage with them be it patient or loved one to hold their water for a minute. A lot of the time what I am doing on any given electronic device is as important or more important than the conversation that needs to be held.

Since I use my own ability level as my measuring stick for others performance ability levels I will say that 98% of the population is not good enough to text and talk either. If I need to talk with or question someone I will let them know I need their attention and can wait for them to finish with whatever they are doing. (Although a rare occurrence I will also inform you when waiting is not an option.)

Occasionally I will get the individual that says no go ahead while they are still hammering away on a key board. I will give a courtesy second, “I can wait”, but anything after will just be ignored. I have yet to anoint anyone to occupy the special 2% of the population the I am guesstimating be good enough to operate an electronic device and hold a conversation with me at the same time. (I suspect that I will find a unicorn long before I find said individual that is qualified for said task.)