Unabashedly Optimistic

My days feel much like this antelope that we passed while driving in Montana—On Top of the World! Unlike Pollyanna who was blindly optimistic, I’m unabashedly optimistic—not embarrassed to build a net before I leap.

And lest you ask… no, I don’t gargle with bong water, and yes, my balloon does land.

The difference between optimists and pessimists is not simple cheerfulness: it’s how we cope with stress. Psychology Professor Michael Scheier of Carnegie Mellon University explains that optimists consistently outlive pessimists because optimists cope better with adversity. Optimists deal with stress and take action to handle it, while pessimists often deny problems or disengage.

These coping mechanisms affect people on a cellular level. Optimists not only live longer, but they also live better, having better mobility, circulation, and cognitive faculties into old age.

Optimist or pessimist—which side of the coin do you fall on?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Pathway to Publication

YOU are cordially invited to join me April 12-15, 2018 in Madison, WI for the 29th Annual Writers’ Conference. I’m delighted to be a guest instructor at this incredible event!

Writers’ Institute is my tribe. This is where I learned the craft, and I can say in all honesty that Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth is published because I availed myself of the fantastic writing critique services offered here.

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BRING A FRIEND to Writers’ Institute this year, and if your friend has never attended a previous Writers’ Institute, you and your friend can each save $35 on your registration — that’s $290 instead of $325 for the full conference.

To receive this discount, you will need to register together. This exclusive, limited offer will only be available December 4th, 2017 through January 9th, 2018 and will end at midnight on January 9th, 2018. Please follow this LINK for details

Have you ever written a book or thought about writing one?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

In the Crapper

Montana is incredible in a number of ways, with innovative thinking at the top of the list. On a drive one afternoon during a visit to that fair state, we saw a tipped-over outhouse that’s now cleverly used as a junction box for telephone and electrical wires.

The wheels in my mind started to spin as I thought about the ways we express ourselves—communication. The coin dropped, and I heard it click.

It’s been said that foul language is the mark of a limited vocabulary and a poor imagination. A person who can’t hold a conversation without the use of expletives is oftentimes referred to as a potty mouth—the outhouse connection!

I can remember having my mouth washed out with soap on a few childhood occasions. And I can still hear my mother’s wise advice: Make your words sweet and tender today, for tomorrow you may have to eat them.

Have you ever had your mouth washed out?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Gratitude – It Does a Body Good

I’m incredibly grateful. Not only the part of the globe we live on—the Pacific Northwest in the United States—but for our specific town, Boise, Idaho. It’s quite possibly one of the friendliest places on earth.

Boise is quite possibly one of the friendliest places on earth

The words “gratitude” and “grace” share a common origin: the Latin word gratus, meaning “pleasing” or “thankful.” The Association for Humanistic Psychology defines gratitude as “Orientation towards noticing and appreciating the positive in the world.”

Boise – the home of free beer

University of California Davis psychology professor Robert Emmons’ research revealed that grateful people tend to be more optimistic, a characteristic that literally boosts the immune system—a clear PHYSICAL benefit.

Boise offers free smells (good ones) too

Dr. Alex Wood, a postgraduate researcher in the Department of Psychology, University of Warwick, said that  “Gratitude is an integral part of well-being”—a distinct benefit to our MENTAL and EMOTIONAL faculties.

Gratitude boosts whole health

Gratitude helps to open the heart, the seat of compassion. It helps us to see the good in our experience. It enhances trust and helps us to forgive—a benefit to our SPIRITUAL aspect.

How do you weave gratitude into the tapestry of your life?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Optical Illusion

We took our son out to dinner for his birthday, and after a delicious meal, we asked the waiter if he would take our photograph with my cell phone. When we dropped Evan off at his apartment, he said, “Will you please send me a copy of that photo?” As we pulled away, I sent it to him.

Before we arrived at our house—only a mile away—my cell phone rang. “Mom, did you see the optical illusion?” I had no idea what he was talking about. “Open the photo and look at the straw on the table. It looks like the right side of it is levitating.”

Sure enough!

You’ve heard the saying, “Don’t believe everything you think.” Well, don’t believe everything you see, either.

What was your most recent encounter with an illusion?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Standing Alone

While discussing the practical use of social media at a monthly meeting with other nonfiction writers, it was suggested that I monetize my blog.

It was also recommended that because Tuesdays with Laurie is high traffic, I should rent this space to others to use as a platform.

I explained that I actually pay an annual fee to keep advertisements off my blog and that I have no intention of being a mouthpiece for services or products.

After they pulled their eyebrows back down from their hairlines, it was clear I stood alone in my thinking.

I have no issues with monetized blogs. In fact, I applaud people who earn income from their posts. It just doesn’t happen to be what Tuesdays with Laurie is about.

When was the last time you stood alone?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Vampire Slayer

We were driving along the highway lickity split when all of a sudden Len and I turn and look at each other, grinning like fools.

Both of us are fans of garlic. Lots and lots of garlic. So when we found ourselves behind a TRUCKLOAD OF GARLIC—our vehicle enveloped in a wake of the heady aroma—we we’re tickled!

It’s been said that garlic wards off vampires and ne’er-do-wells from the darker side of the spirit world. But why? A bit of internet research went a long way toward learning about the origin of this superstition:

“Mosquitoes suck blood and in doing so spread disease. So do vampires. Some of the symptoms of malaria—exhaustion, fever, anemia—are reminiscent of the reputed effects of being bitten by a vampire without being totally drained or turned. Garlic is a known insect repellent which reportedly works well against mosquitoes, perhaps people saw the similarity with vampires, especially when in their bat form.”

What’s the best Halloween costume that you’ve ever worn?

Bwahahahaha!

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com