From Wall Street to Honolulu, pick a city, any city and occupy it

APEC is coming to Honolulu next week. Let the protests begin! (If you don’t know what APEC is don’t worry, I didn’t know either until I went to the website)

The occupy movement which started on wall street, eventually has made its way to Honolulu. It is interesting to hear that there is an actual  occupy Honolulu movement. Protests in paradise, just doesn’t have the same feel as a New York protest. If I was in New York I may head down to wall street to witness this aspect of American History. In Honolulu, I am headed past the protest, straight to the beach. Honolulu is known for its tourism, it is a vacation destination. People usually don’t go on vacation to join a protest (at least I don’t think so). If you happen to live in Honolulu, you live with Aloha, and you still are unlikely to join a protest.

Needless to say, the Occupy Honolulu,  Hilo, or Maui movements, will never get as much coverage as occupying Wall Street, or DC.  Because Honolulu is so far away from the mainland, it can be difficult at times to connect to the issues of the nation. With a large amount of ocean water, and a 6 hour time difference from the east coast, the mainland can feel like another country some days.

If anyone truly sees all of Hawaii, you will see that much of Hawaii is filled with the 99%. It would be surprising if anyone in the 1% actually lives on one of the Hawaiian islands, my feeling is that they just come here as a lavish vacation destination.

Wall Street New York
Image by Mathew Knott via Flickr

The occupy Wall Street movement was started on a good basis. To bad the basis hasn’t yet reached a  consensus. With everyone having a different reason to occupy any city, the 99% actually looks like a joke to the top 1%.  The top 1% should earn money, you work hard earn money. But don’t expect bailouts and government handouts. The inequality in taxes is disturbing. There are truly reasons to protest.  But are the protest being heard? Is anything really going to change from these protest or will the movement become yesterday’s news? New York winters are harsh so I don’t expect the Wall Street protesters to be out there much longer. Sleeping in tents in the winter will never sound like much fun. Maybe some of them can come to Honolulu for the winter, and occupy the streets of paradise. With more people, the occupy Honolulu movement may get some positive attention. Without the people, it is a sad picture of a movement.

Honolulu International Airport
Image via Wikipedia

With APEC starting, I’m sure more people will be out for the protest. I still am not sure what they are protesting, but I will let you know when I find out. Let’s start making signs, and put Honolulu on the map. We are more than just a vacation destination. Honolulu is also a city that is down to fight for the cause.

Is this what it was like in the 1970’s?

Positive energy, positive thoughts, positive experiences

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I want a wedding! But you can keep that whole marriage thing for yourself

Today in entertainment news it was announced that Kim Kardashian and her short-term husband Kris Humphries are getting divorced. Is anyone really shocked by this? Probably not (well apparently Kris is). Yet, the end of such a highly publicized relationship does lead some discussion about a more important topic: When you say yes to marrying someone, are you saying yes to the wedding, or yes to the actual marriage?

Kim and Kris were married 72 days. Wow only 72 days! Seasons last longer than that. They were a match made in reality T.V. heaven, maybe that was problem number one. Reality T.V. is not real life. When the cameras stop rolling, and the checks stop coming, you are actually stuck with a real person. The person that millions of people watched you say you were ready to spend the rest of your life with. Not the rest of the summer with. Marriage vows are supposedly said for a reason. For better or worse, until death do us part right? That is for real in real life.

Kim Kardashian at the Seventh Annual Hollywood...
Image via Wikipedia

The  point of this post is not to attack Kim and Kris for their decisions on their relationship. A lot of blame is being put on Kim for the whole wedding extravaganza, but Kris is an adult (even though he appeared a bit immature at times), he knew what he was walking into, he chose to keep walking.  Nobody has ever offered to pay me millions of dollars to watch me get married, maybe if someone did I might just get married and divorced real quick too.  I wonder if the sanctity of marriage has turned into a downgraded concept, that is easily replaced with the freedom of divorce. Is marriage really just a piece of paper with no meaning?

With age comes responsibility. I know a few married couples, I also know people who have been married and are now divorced.  A wedding is an exciting time for a woman. It starts from the moment of engagement. The ring! Most girls grow up dreaming of  the fairy tale wedding. Once the ring is placed, you can start planning your childhood fantasy, with  flowers, poofy dress and all. For some planning a wedding is a stressful time, but to make the fairy tale perfect stress must be involved.

One thing that I have come to realize it is easy to get married. I know I have said this before, anyone can get married. But getting married to the right person, and making the marriage work is the truly the hard part. The work should not start after the wedding is over, and the flowers have died. The work actually starts way before that. Before the engagement ring is even put on the women’s finger, both people should have a basic understanding that this marriage is going to be work. If either of you think otherwise, well then you may be filing for divorce in 72 days.

A wedding starts with a wedding planner. A marriage starts with communication. Communication should have started from day one. Okay, so maybe you were late with that communication thing, but it should have started way before the day of your dream wedding. In my work, I both love and hate doing marriage counseling. It is great to work with a couple that is at least agreeing to work on their marriage, but it is difficult to teach people to communicate when they never have  felt comfortable communicating before. Love should not hurt, and neither should communication, so proper communication takes a lot of work.

When I have counseled women who are  in intimate relationships, they often tell me they are afraid to communicate with their partner. I have heard many times, “if I tell him this, then he may leave me”. When I hear that I immediately think, well if you don’t tell him, then your relationship is based on a lie. When you lie to yourself, eventually the truth starts to eat you up mentally and physically.

A relationship also involves making expectations clear. If you have fear in expressing your expectations, say to yourself, “is this the type of marriage that I really want to enter into?”  Before the wedding, have the conversation about the expectations for your new family. Talk about where the both of you want to live, do the both of you want kids, how important is contact with the in-laws, everything down to the subject of  pets. If it is a topic to importance for you, say it to your partner. Your partner may not agree with you, but then at least you can have that conversation before the wedding.

Also, don’t go into a marriage with hope that the other person will eventually change their mind, or you can make them change their mind on something. That rarely is possible, and you will set yourself up for disappointment if you have that expectation. If they tell you straight up what they want or expect from the beginning, take that as a fact. You then have the choice to accept it or move on.

I can understand why Kim Kardashian may have been quick to want to marry. It was a fabulous wedding after all. She got to play princess for a day, and she was living every young girl’s fantasy of Cinderella marrying her Prince. Kim just turned 31, so the pressure from herself, her family, and society, to get married and start a family must hit at full speed (that feeling is one that I do actually know about). She has said that she wants a family;  how do you start a family? With a husband! Whether it was well thought out or not, Kris was the man with the ring, so he got the role of husband.  Kim is a beautiful girl, so no matter what happens she will have  no trouble finding a man. However, next time  now that she has had the dream wedding, she will take a little more time and plan an actual vision for the marriage.

If your marriage lasts less than 90 days do you have to return all the wedding gifts?

Positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences

The non-office work life…why give that up

I have been pondering my move back to the mainland. The problem: I live in Hawaii and I work from home! What an amazing deal I have set up for myself. I start to feel that any mainland job would be taking ten steps backward. An office is not my home, and cold winters cannot match the Hawaiian sun.  However, ultimately for me to move forward in my own self development, and transition to the next stage in life, I need to move back to the mainland. I have been looking for opportunities where I can still live on the mainland and work from home. Yeah, can’t find any. So not only does giving up the island mean transitioning back to mainland life, it means transitioning back to office life. A harsh reality I dread so very much.

Working from home does have it pros and cons. As great as it is, it also gets lonely sometimes. I am the only person around, I can go for hours without talking to another human being, and daytime television gets boring real quick. I enjoy watching The View, but if I watch Dr. Oz too much I begin to get afraid to eat anything, or leave my house because I may get an infection.

I live on an island of paradise, so working from home does have a lot of positives. I can go running by the beach in the morning year round without worrying about being on time for the office, I can do yoga while everyone is at work, I can go to the beach mid day and work with a front row view of the ocean. I can go to the office when I want for conversation and leave when I when I am tired of sitting in the office. Lunch breaks: as long as I want, at what ever time I choose. What is not to like about working from home! The weekend rush at Wal-Mart or the grocery store can be avoided, and when you see your co-workers you are just happy to see them to catch up. No office gossip, no office drama. A care free work environment.  How am I supposed to give that up?

As great as it is, working from home does have it downsides. It takes three times as long to finish a task that could be completed in a matter of minutes in an office environment. For fun I end up yelling at the commentators on Fox News, and watch CNN to catch up on the problems of the world. My refrigerator is always available. At home you will either gain weight by eating, or spend all day working out just because you can.  At home it is tempting to take a nap, your bed is right there! The work that I don’t finish during the day, I end up doing at night, and my work is always around. It is hard to take a break, temptations to check work email at night are a daily hassle. The lines between work life and home life become blurred.

I love my work in Hawaii, I wonder if I can get a similar deal on the mainland. In church today the Pastor spoke of your next  being better than your last. So, no matter how good this experience may seem in this moment, my next will an experience that is one beyond measure, better than I could ever imagine.

 

Positive thoughts, Positive energy, Positive experiences

29 and counting…part 3 Getting over the defeat

5 months, 3 days away from turning 30

A few weeks ago I was feeling really defeated. I just wanted to quit. I wanted to quit everything. I was done. I felt tired of trying and not getting any results. What was I trying to do? Well now that I’m over my feeling of defeat, I am re-examining exactly what it is that I want to do. I start to ask myself, What am I really looking for?

At the end of my twenties, I feel like I followed the path of life that I supposed to go on. At least the plan that my parents may have had for me. I graduated from high school, went to college, graduated from college, even graduated from grad school at NYU! I started working for employers in my field, made a career for myself, moved to the other side of the world, survived in Hawaii, and now I wonder: What’s supposed to come next!

Cover of
Cover via Amazon

What is my next move, and how do I start to make it. I feel like the person in the Robert Frost poem, The Road not taken. I am at a crossroads of two diverging roads, so obviously I should take the road less traveled by. The problem is I don’t even have a sense of which road has been less traveled.

In actuality I always have taken the road less traveled. My life is a representation of taking that chance to make the difference. However, today as I move closer to 30 it appears that life has hit me with uncertainty. Uncertainty about if  that road that few go down is really the right road. I wonder about my career. I love my job, but do I want to do this forever. Should I get a Ph.D. to excel in my career, or do I just want a Ph. D. so people can call me Doctor. I can’t let my ego make life decisions for me, in the end I will just end up in a never-ending battle with my own self.  When I have accomplished everything that was on my “to do” list, what am I really supposed to do next.  Make a new list possibly? Okay, what do I put on it.  The plan that I had at 19 once seemed that it would last  for the rest of my life. At 29 I wonder how long my next plan will last. I really don’t want this feeling again at 39.

There are days when I want to hide, I want to disappear, so I don’t have to make decisions for my own life. I tell myself “WAKE UP!” this is adulthood, accept responsibility for your own life. I wonder if I should try a new career, but what would I do? Would I even like it? I guess I won’t know until I make an attempt. I wonder if I should move to a new city, but will I be happy there?  I need to stop wondering and just do something, anything.  So here it goes, I will set out again on that road less traveled by. I’m going to enter 30 with at new plan, a new outlook, complete bigger and better accomplishments. To fight the feeling of uncertainty I will remember: My best days are ahead of me, and I just have to live for today.

 Positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences