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Archive for August, 2011

47 Minutes ’til September

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

I began the idea of this post specifically at 47 minutes prior to September 1, 2011.  Kind of sounds like the title of some retro pop group.

2011! Remember back in the early 1990s when 2011 seemed like mere Jetsons-light-years-away?

This is a kind and gentle reminder that surprise – we’re here!  Although I’m still officially PO’d that we haven’t received our teleporters yet, I would like you to stop and check where you are in relation to your annual goals thus far.

I’m doing OK.  My personal and professional goals are pretty good; my financial aren’t quite where I’d like them to be, but I’m working on that.  The economy isn’t exactly helping, either.  But I’m trying for now.  Big push into the 4th Quarter before we put this Jetsons-era year officially to bed.

Work it! Hit your goals!  And remember – this post is sponsored by “You Only Have One Life To Live” – so LIVE IT!  No regrets!

The Best Stuff Lurks in the Dark Corners

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

I was reading the new AARP magazine earlier this week (and I know what you’re thinking: it wasn’t mine!  It was my mom’s – really!) I stumbled upon an interview with Jane Lynch about her new book.  I’m not really into autobiographies…but she said one quote that stuck with me, and it haunts me still, so I thought I’d share it with you.

She was talking about her dark character on glee, and she said the character was awesome to play, because you have to channel your dark energy, and in your dark corners lurks the best stuff.

Hmm.  The more I think about it, the more I think she’s right.  Thinking about my own darkest corners–like divorce, loss of family, loss of job (pink slip on my birthday – ugh – never will forget that one) I’ve learned some of the biggest and best lessons of my entire life.  Like, to be self reliant, to always have a backup plan, to learn from the past and keep moving forward in the present and into the future.

If you’ve got some dark corners too (and who doesn’t?) think about how they’ve really in retrospect been some of your best stuff.  We are all here to learn, and in those corners truly lie the toughest, and best lessons of all.  Even if you’re not an actress who needs to channel a bad girl–this lesson applies to all of us…

“It’s Not Whether You Get Knocked Down, It’s Whether You Get Up.”

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

Generally, sports analogies drive me nuts.  But Vince Lombardi said this, and I think it came from an old adage way before his time anyway that said, when the chips are down, you are down, or whatever is down in your life, it’s not the down part that really counts.  It’s whether or not you get UP from that downtrodden place that truly matters.

This was wisdom I had in more than one conversation of late.  In the most recent version, I was sharing coffee with a fellow person passionate about what he does.  He said he’s been getting frustrated with his work–not so much with the work itself, but instead with getting knocked down by trying to move forward at his company–try new things, grow, provide better and different service to customers, etc., but his manager just wasn’t on board.  There’s a million reasons why–money, time, lack of patience, fear or a combination thereof usually in business.  But my reply back to him was the same reply I’ve shared a dozen times in the last month: you’re down, I get it.  But how can you channel that energy into getting up?

Trust me, trying new things is painful sometimes.  You can get challenged, beat up, scoffed, laughed at, put down, and literally knocked down at times.  Sometimes people don’t understand why you want to try new things; they want to keep the status quo, stay in the same place forever, and they want you to stay in that same place forever too.  That may work for some, granted.

But that, in reality, isn’t always the best option for the change makers, the game changers, and those who truly want to keep moving forward in their lives.  If this happens to be your boss, or his or her boss, or someone else at a higher level of your organization (or your life, for that matter)–yes, you always must first ask yourself what it is that you’re going to do to change the situation.  BUT–I’m here to tell you, dear friends, that sometimes that means moving on.  While we want to hold on to the past sometimes because we feel the obligation to hold tight, sometimes that just isn’t the best for us.  We must keep learning, exploring, trying new things, and developing as people.  That’s just part of the true human experience.

If your boss doesn’t get it, well, then maybe it’s time to ask the really tough question: is it time to change your boss?  Change your situation?

It is always difficult, but sometimes, sports analogies aside,…it is right.

Free Condoms? There’s an App for That!

Monday, August 29th, 2011

Now that I have your attention…

Had yet another crazy long Monday today (this class until 9:40 thing is a killer)!  BUT – made good progress in the team project for the Law & Public Health class I’m taking this semester.  We had to get in teams of 6 and give a 25 minute presentation on a public health topic.  Of course, being the (former) sex-and-women’s health educator, I thought it would be cool to look at the NYC free condom app and see if free condoms actually decrease STIs, and decrease cost burdens on health plans…?  Don’t know yet.  Stay tuned.

Prior to that, we took a quiz on the government.  I thought it was interesting, and came home and found more quizzes.  Linked are two – these should make you feel inspired to know thy government and dust off the civics class brain cells.  I spent the day looking for Schoolhouse Rock You Tube videos too (on I’m Just a Bill and the Three Rings).  Considering the college freshmen entering this year were born in 1993, I’m guessing few to none of them actually grew up on SHR like the rest of us.  Let it be said that Dr. Albert will attempt to bring cool retro-ness back into the classroom.  Boss.

Condoms, quizzes on civics, and Schoolhouse Rock.  This is my wacky life.  I’ll spare you the further details on my readings this week for law school which covered snakes, peyote, motorcycle helmets, photographs of art, prior authorization, and Rule 402 of evidence.  I’m off to bed now, so I can get up and live the crazy over again tomorrow.

Choose Your Own Adventure, Meet Mr. Darcy

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

After reading about a kajillion, kabillion, (whatever term the kids these days are using for too many) pages of law school reading for the week, I had to stop and read some candy.  And, just about everyone knows that I’m a sucker for Mr. Darcy, like most women, right?

Anyway, the last book I checked out of the library kind of brings together two of my literary favorites: 1. Choose Your Own Adventure books (you do remember those? If not, you’re too young for this post.) and 2. Mr. Darcy, Lizzy, and all the other colorful characters of Pride & Prejudice in the new book, Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy: The Last Man in the World (Pride & Prejudice Continues).

So, while it isn’t exactly choose your own adventure, it does give a different scenario to Jane Austen’s story of Lizzy and Darcy.  I can’t give it away.  If you’re hooked like me, you’ll just have to read it.  And, bonus (or caution: time vampire alert): there are other Elizabeth/Darcy books out there that take off at different points from the original plot line with Austen’s story too. (Darn, more reading I have to do and no extra time to do it. Insert grumble here.)

This blog isn’t always serious.  Sometimes I have to share some book candy with my blog besties, right?  And if you’re a dude reading this, I know what you’re thinking – eyeball rolls and ‘more seemingly impossible standards by which to be a man with the Darcy comparisons’–barf.  But Darcy certainly isn’t perfect.  Best of all, he knows it – and that’s why we love him, in this book, and the original, and I’m sure all the others (that I now have to put on my reading list….)!

Calling in All Favors, For the Love of Andrea

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

So, to all of you whom I have met over the past few years and have attempted to do favors for, to which you’ve replied, “What can I do for you?”  I’m answering that very question with this post.  This is how you can help me: by helping Andrea.

Andrea (Voss) Vellinga is a victim of the state fair tragedy.  She’s been hospitalized since the night of the accident.  More importantly, however, she is also a mom, a wife, a daughter, a sister, and a friend to many.  Although I don’t personally know her, one of my friends does.  And my friend is helping to arrange a fundraiser for her, her family and her recovery through her church in Anderson, Indiana, Ovid Community Church.

This program is called For The Love of Andrea.  There will be a weekend rally in Pendleton, IN on Sept 23-25th to raise funds for her medical bills and recovery.  On Saturday, September 24th, there will be a silent and live auction and proceeds will go to her and her recovery through the not for profit church.  Here’s how I humbly suggest you get involved:

1.  Donate an item for the auction – I’m donating a book.  But if you have cool stuff to donate, please consider it.  If it’s a big item and you need a pickup, the email address to arrange pick up of the item is fortheloveofandrea at gmail dot com.
2.  Consider donating cash – everything –all the details are at their website,  Go there, click on ‘how you can help’, and figure out if you can help somehow.
3. Tweet/like/+1 this post and/or the website, everywhere.
4.  Even if you can only think of her and keep her in your thoughts and prayers, I along with so many others would appreciate it.  And that’s doing A. LOT!

Seriously, I’m calling in favors on this one.  You don’t even have to tell me you helped! Or, if you did, TELL ME and I’ll stay off your back awhile about the “What can I do for you?” question.  Just. Help. Please.  Anyway you can.  I would really appreciate it, and I’m certain Andrea and her family would too.  Thanks!

The Power of Nothing

Friday, August 26th, 2011

One of the trickiest things about law school, and being a lawyer (not that I know, yet, but from what I heard from others who are) is trying to figure out what law applies to any situation in the first place.  So, while what I’m about to share with you isn’t necessarily a legal issue, I can tell you that it applies mainly to us introverts – so extroverts, feel free to skip this post.

As I get older, (reluctantly and admittedly) one of the things I’m really beginning to value and treasure is…silence.  Silence literally to me is becoming golden.  Why?

First off, where can you go to get it…to actually GET silence, for more than 30 seconds in a row?  It’s tough to get at work–there are constant interruptions, phones ringing, email to be answered.  You can’t really get it in the car, because there are cars all around you making noise and traffic sounds are wretched.  You can’t really get it at home, if you live with others all the time.  You can’t even get it at libraries that much anymore, because libraries are going away and everyone is using some type of device (computer or phone) there too!  (Maybe that’s why I love them so – because they at least USED to be quiet.)

Friends, I’m here to plug this little request into the universe and sincerely ask for more quiet time for all of us.  We need to stop, think and value the power of having nothing jamming the frequency between our thoughts and our actions every now and then.  When I’m quiet, and the world around me matches, I can think and reflect upon what it is that I not only have done, but what I can do in the future, and THINK through the possibilities.  This is hard to do in front of a phone and a computer sometimes.  This is hard to do when others around you are buzzing–be it their cars, their phones or some other device they’re pounding on.

Sometimes, it is great to just hear nothing besides the thoughts in our heads.  There is power in it!  I hope you find your own version of nothing, because it can be powerful.  (And maybe this does apply to the extroverts too…)



Thursday, August 25th, 2011

One of my colleagues at work had a migraine today.  While that I’m sure was physical, this week has given me a psychological migraine.  Going back to school x 2 is tough, and a big readjustment every fall.  I’m still not totally there.  That, coupled with several publishing challenges today made me double check my passion to publish.

It isn’t as easy as everyone thinks.

Yes, there’s the writing part, but there’s a lot more to it.  Like, dealing with the copyright office, like, dealing with publishing agreements, like, dealing with people who don’t always give you answers as quickly as you want.  I promise not to use the word like anymore in this post, and I won’t say more than that regarding my publishing issues this week.  But I can tell you, a book is more than just a book.  It is a swirl of activity, work, and contracts.  It can be a maddening mess at times as well.  I’d like you to respectfully consider that the next time you hold a brand new book in your hands, and appreciate the blood sweat and tears that went into making it.

And, I’m here to apologize, to you my 5 readers, as my post isn’t its usual rockstarian, fierce, feel-good-get-out-there-and-make-things-happen tone.

Some days are better than others.  Some weeks are better than others.  And this week sure isn’t my best week.  But I’m fighting, kicking and screaming my way through it.  I’m in hopes I get to the other side, alive, and still kicking, as the old Simple Minds song goes.*  Keep kicking and fighting out there, if you’re having a migraine-ish week like me, my good people.  Don’t let yourself get treaded on…you must be your own #1 advocate.

*(BTW, If you don’t know who Simple Minds are, don’t tell me.  That will be another nail in the coffin of this week, and I’m ready to move on to a brighter week – without feeling so…antique.)

5 Years

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

This week, I received a special card in my inbox at work.  It was a congrats on your 5th Anniversary with Butler card.  It was signed by President Danko.

It really wasn’t until I opened that card that I realized that–Wow–I’ve been here working for 5 years!  I can’t really say I’ve held any other job for 5 years in my life, EVER.  I was a student originally at Butler for 5 years (pharmacy school back then was a 5 year BS – and no, I wasn’t on a 5 year program of my own choosing…haha)…and I’ve worked on and off for a few companies for that long, but never in the same job, and never in a row.

All I can really say is – tempus fugit.  The time truly has flown by.  But being the future-focused gal that I am, I wonder what my NEXT 5 years will look like?  Gee, if I only had that crystal ball…maybe it’s more fun not knowing.  That way, you can leave the hallway wide open!

If you’ve done anything (beyond breathing and growing older of course) for 5 years or more, congrats!  Five is short, but long all at the same time….


Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

Today was P-1 orientation day at Butler.  For those of you who don’t know the wonderful world of pharmacy academia, “P-1″ denotes the first professional year of a pharmacy program.  Typically, the Freshman and Sophomore years are pre-professional years.  P-1s are typically juniors in college, or their 3rd year of higher ed.

When entering the professional phase, we put a LOT of emphasis on the word, “Professional.”  I caught myself saying it a lot today. In fact, I’m PRO-professional!  But, what exactly is it?  The American Pharmacists Association defines it this way.  But being the final year law student I am…? I actually think about it like property.

In Property law class, property “rights” are thought of as a “bundle of sticks”.  You have different rights within that bundle of sticks.  So professionalism in pharmacy could be thought of in the same way.  There’s dressing correctly–ironing your white coat and wearing your name tag.  That’s a stick of professionalism.  There’s respectful interactions–addressing one’s professors respectfully and in accordance with their background, and being polite to agree to disagree.  That’s another stick.  There’s doing the right thing–being ethical, first doing no harm, keeping patient information confidential.  That’s another stick.  There’s being on time–doing the work, showing up, etc.  And another stick.  There’s also leadership, and while I’ve already talked about this in a previous blog, it is yet another stick in the bundle.  There’s professional identity online too–managing your “second” life instead of just your first life.

You get the picture here, methinks.

I’m pro-being-professional.  The profession of pharmacy demands it, because we have people’s lives in our hands.  Many other professions?  Same deal.  There are a lot of facets to professionalism, and while each profession has a little different spin on them, the bundle of sticks pretty much remains the same in my book.

To the incoming P-1 pharmacy class at Butler University – congratulations and welcome!  And remember what Dr. Albert told you today–keep that Professional Helmet on–you’re on the clock as a full time professional beginning today, and henceforth 24/7/365.