Editor’s Note: As they have for the last couple of years, your summer Pause messages will feature the ‘Best of Pause. These GEMS are readers’ favorite messages from earlier years. Whether you are a long time subscriber, or new to our list, I hope you enjoy them all. After Labor Day, your Pause messages will once again feature all new info and resources.
P.S. – Also, be sure to scan right to the end of this message. You’ll want to be sure to catch the details on my Canada 150 Summer Art Project and the unique Provinces of Canada paintings on offer each week. This week – Alberta.
REFLECTION & ACTION: A few years ago things were in flux in my husband’s workplace. Many of his co-workers were concerned about the impact of potential changes on their lives. Dave refused to get bent out of shape. When one of his colleagues asked him why he was so calm in the midst of the commotion, he replied, “They can’t scare me. I’ve raised teenagers.”
It was a laughable response, but one that contains a seed of truth. Life experience leaves perspective in its wake. You develop a better sense of what really matters. You learn to separate real risks from imagined catastrophes. You build confidence in your ability to cope and adapt to what lies ahead.
Call it the Maturity Advantage. One respondent to my Overload and Overwhelm survey described it this way: “I’m making different choices than I would have made five years ago. I’m too old to want to be miserable!” Another observed: “I constantly take readings of my stress level and deal with overload immediately. When you get to be my age (62) people just write you off as ‘eccentric’ and you can pretty much take care of yourself if you need to.”
Younger brains do have a faster processing speed and an easier time learning or memorizing, while the middle age brain struggles with short-term memory. However, a web of neural pathways in the more mature brain is an asset in dealing with complex problems. Years of connections and layers of knowledge help identify patterns and similarities in situations. They make it easier to see solutions – to get the root of the problem, to tune in the big picture. It appears that grey hair and grey matter do grow together.
Here are two ways to put this maturity advantage to work.
- Perhaps you’re someone who shows a little wear on the tread, has left a little rubber on the road, or chocked up a few clicks on the odometer. You know – you’re experienced! If that is the case, when challenges roll into town, don’t let yourself get drawn into the fury and frenzy. Use your life experience to give things perspective. One of the greatest gifts you have to share with others is your experienced voice of calm and reason.
- On the other hand, you may be new to life in the workplace. When challenges nudge you in the direction of overwhelm, seek out a conversation with a more experienced colleague. Someone who’s weathered many storms may be able to help you better understand what is happening at the moment and what that could mean over the long haul. Access that long view to help you short-circuit your near-term stress and get a better grip on your options.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK: We should not only use the brains we have, but all that we can borrow. – Woodrow Wilson
RESOURCE OF THE WEEK: Check out this Forbes article entitled ‘Good News! Your Brain is Getting Smarter‘.
CANADA 150 SUMMER ART PROJECT: In honor of our country’s 2017 anniversary celebrations, I’m delighted to introduce my very own Canada 150 Art Project. I’ve created one painting to honor each province – all ten of which I’ve had the joy of visiting over the years.
One unique provincial landscape, seascape or streetscape will be featured here at the end of the each of the summer GEMS messages. Ten paintings are up for grabs – one for each province – and one each week.
This week’s offering features Alberta. Read on for what you need to know to make this painting yours.
Each painting is 8” x 10” in size and although it’s not shown here, each one will arrive mounted in a double white mat bringing the outer dimensions to 11” x 14” – ready to pop into a standard frame of your own choosing.
The price for each painting will be $150 (taxes included) plus $15 for shipping to anywhere in Canada.
Each painting will arrive with a written commentary on a few of my memories of that particular province.
If you are looking for a unique remembrance of Canada 150, and you’ve always wanted to buy an original watercolor from the Pauseworks Studio, here’s your chance.
Just send me an email message with the words ‘Canada 150 – I’ll Take It’ in the subject line. The first reader to call dibs on each week’s masterpiece takes it. Good luck and Happy Canada 150.
BTW – Last week’s feature, Nova Scotia, is still available. All of the other previous images have already found their new homes.