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Jill Reid
Author of the “Real Life Series” & “Please God, Make Me A Writer” | Writing on life, relationships, happiness, health, & personal success-https://JillReid.com

CHANGE

Change is a continuous thread running through every moment of our lives

rear view of woman wearing blue jeans sitting on a rock looking out over lake and mountains
Photo by Andrew Ly on Unsplash

Change is inevitable.

Just ask a butterfly — or a swan. Yet for most of us, the concept of change is frightening, because it means we have to come to grips with the reality that nothing stays the same.

For example, ten minutes ago, when I glanced out my window, the sun was shining, spreading warmth and light across my backyard. Then a cloud bank rolled in, extinguishing the sunny rays and dimming the brightness. A dreary, grey palette layered the sky, quickly muting the vibrant landscape.

And no doubt in a few more minutes, the view will change again, perhaps offering just…


RESPONSIBILITY

Sometimes you have to learn the lesson, to learn the lesson

smiling girl with long brown hair wearing sunglasses white top and pants and tan boots and hat sitting on ground leaning against white board wall
Photo by Daniel Salcius on Unsplash

We thank our lucky stars, the universe, guardian angels, and our spiritual guides if things are going great.

When life is grand, we’re feeling good about life and our satisfaction level escalates. And we quickly give credit to what we believe to be the source of our current success — an entity or concept we can count on that guarantees a repeat performance, without much help or effort on our part.

And if rotten tomatoes head our way and splatter all over our freshly-laundered shirt? We blame everything and everyone in sight. Because when our life circumstances go south, we immediately start looking for a scapegoat.

I’ve tried both tactics to justify my personal ups and downs

And frankly, I’m not sure either strategy is realistic — or desirable.


WRITING

How to get past the guilt when writing takes over your life

girl with blonde hair wearing blue turtle neck sweater standing in front of slatted background
Photo by Fezbot2000 on Unsplash

A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it.” — Roald Dahl

Sometimes, writing feels like a force-fit

The reality of a life already jam-packed with responsibilities and obligations creates a challenge when it comes to accommodating my desire to create. Because there are only so many waking hours, and only so many balls I can juggle at once — without creating a huge mess.

How am I supposed to be creative, inspired, and prolific with my writing when there’s so much crap I need to do?

It’s a question of guilt — the internal wagging finger and raised eyebrow sending a warning that…


PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

Facing your fears may be the best thing that could happen

black and white photo of girl with dark hair pulling her top over her nose and mouth
Photo by Chase Fade on Unsplash

It’s easy to get caught up in an endless loop of confusion

We’re overwhelmed, our too-tight schedules leaving little time to figure out the big picture, much less the priorities of the moment — or the next day. Many of us find ourselves repeatedly asking the same questions, to no one in particular. For example:

  • How do I figure out my real purpose in life?
  • What, exactly, is the part I was born to play?
  • When will I finally be happy and start living the perfect life?

The absence of an immediate answer can cause disappointment, lethargy, and a general sense that we’re not getting anywhere in our lives. …


LIFE LESSONS

A simple recipe for happiness and a life well-lived

smiling girl wearing pink baseball cap and backpack swinging on a vine in the forest
Photo by Elmer Cañas on Unsplash

It’s really amazing how much our lives can change — especially for the better — in a short period of time.

Recently, I downsized my living space — embracing a more streamlined, organized lifestyle — and, in general, made a few alterations and adjustments intended to simplify my life.

My personal forward motion, while not always easy to implement, was long overdue. After residing in another state for 30 years, I was ready to leave my no-longer-rewarding accumulations of predictability and repetition. I wanted the opportunity to explore new places and meet new people while experiencing — and appreciating — the influence of a different regional history and culture.

Anxious to investigate my new surroundings, I reveled in first-time discoveries.

Exploring new terrain and the opportunities of my new surroundings encouraged me…


COMMUNICATION

Take your eyes off the screen and connect with your voice

two smiling girls walking down beach with towel wrapped around them
Photo by Dominic Sansotta on Unsplash

I enjoy talking with people — friends and strangers alike.

For me, opening the door to a conversation provides a form of connection that seems to be missing in so many of our lives.

But finding others to verbally engage with isn’t always a simple task. The reality is, in our hands-off tech-savvy culture, most folks would rather set their eyes on a screen, click a few keys, and hit send or share.

While some forms of written communication — email, text, posting on a roulette wheel of social media platforms — have a place and purpose in our modern world, these options often result in a level of separation…


RELATIONSHIPS

The direction you take in life comes down to a matter of choice

happy young couple standing in park holding hands
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

Some day you will find out that there is far more happiness in another’s happiness than in your own. — Honore de Balzac

A couple of weeks ago, I was doing research for a story and ran across an article that caught my eye. As I read through the piece, I noticed the writer had used the phrase, “being comfortable in your own skin.”

Made popular years ago, the expression encouraged an attitude of acceptance, promoting a guiltless surrender to flaws and imperfections in physical appearance.

Over time, the axiom evolved into a popular way of defining a state of…


SEX

An 8-step strategy to prepare yourself for future encounters.

view of bare man’s torso from neck to waist with arms hugging from the back and fingertips with orange nail polish
Photo by Erik Lucatero on Unsplash

We’ve all been thinking about how our everyday lives have and will continue to change from the pandemic.

For example, activities and places visited in the past without a second thought — movie theaters, gyms, nightclubs, parties, concerts, and other “close encounter” venues — have become cautious considerations, if not completely off-limits.

A visit to the grocery store or a restaurant may require wearing a mask and keeping our distance from others while knowing there’s still a risk of infection.

But that’s not the worst of it.

As naturally hormone-infused humans, we’ve also been deprived of one of our most basic instincts and drives — the need to connect with others in a physical and meaningful way.

I know it may be a bit early…


Do overly friendly pleas to buy someone else’s crap ever work with you?

pensive woman with blonde hair tied up on her head wearing flowered dress and holding right ear with right hand
Photo by Remy_Loz on Unsplash

It’s bound to happen to you, and probably already has on many occasions

Maybe you’re not sure what to order from the menu, and your server makes a few suggestions. Or you’re shopping for shoes or a jacket or a backpack, and you’re immediately approached by a helpful coordinator who’s ready to fill your closet with the newest trendy line.

You might be considering a car purchase, or a new diet plan, or a few courses on how to improve your social media platform. …


Just when I thought I had everything figured out, reality tapped me on the shoulder

back view of woman in kayak holding paddle and floating along river in thick foreset
Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash

“Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it to be.” — Jack Welch

Life is a teacher, if nothing else

Every day, I remind myself that everything I’ve learned so far is the result of past experiences. I cling to this mindset, believing my current knowledge is reliable, and securely contained in a virtual database in my mind —a collection of information I can easily access, sort, and retrieve at any time.

My mental storehouse is filled with events, circumstances, people, and situations at the ready, waiting to raise their hands and be called upon. …

Jill Reid

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