Goodbye Grumblings

Find the good

A bike story reminds me about gratitude, planning and the pleasure of helping

Thing One has a sturdy, expensive bike. It’s made by a company in British Columbia, on the other side of the country from Ottawa. It’s customized. It survives his riding every year on the first bare roads of March through to November’s cold and ice. This bike has history: he rode it while volunteering as a first aider […]

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Quilters sew comfort

In May, the Alberta city of Fort McMurray burned. People across Canada watched as residents fled with what little they had time to pack or could carry. Videos of near escapes, of cars driving through smoke, of houses in flames riveted our attention. Seeing the images and listening to the stories told in shell-shocked voices was heart-wrenching. […]

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Take time to notice the good

I’m grateful for times when Grumblings doesn’t make an appearance, times when finding the good is easy. In this post, I’m making a point of appreciating some good I was fortunate enough to enjoy. I’ve touched on how powerful negative messages are in another post. I firmly believe that good will triumph. I also believe that we need […]

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How recategorizing helped me battle a grumble

I firmly believe that we can all change if we really want to. It took some big, fluffy beach towels to remind me that sometimes a tiny shift, a simple change to my mental filing system, is all it takes to stop a grumble. I like the idea that we can all change. But the actual […]

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A magical way to improve conversations

It’s not new, and it isn’t really magical — but it sure feels like the effects are magical. It’s common knowledge, really. So why devote a whole post to it? Because it’s worth repeating until it becomes second nature. What is this (almost) magical thing? It’s simple: Listen. Just listen. Listen properly. I don’t mean listen the way I listen […]

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Sidestep Grumblings by assuming positive intent

It’s been almost five months since I started this blog, and every time I write a post I learn something. I’ve learned that what I think I’m going to write often isn’t what I need to write — that is to say, I may think I’ve gotten to the bottom of something, but a different truth […]

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Cranky? Work up a sweat and get dirty!

Gardening is my favourite way to get filthy. I picture someone wearing spotless white clothes and a big straw hat. A tall drink with ice cubes clinking softly waits nearby. My reality is pretty much the opposite: sunscreen, sweat and filthy clothes. Usually I remember to bring a water bottle out with me. The more I need […]

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How to change patterns in a marriage

Start small. Seven months ago, I made a couple of small changes to my daily habits: I stopped using my snooze button and I started writing almost every day. When I think about those changes, though they may seem inconsequential, I feel a pleasant glow of pride and happiness. I also feel optimistic about making […]

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Is grumbling really so bad?

Why even bother trying to stop grumbling? Why not say hello to Grumblings the dragon and live in harmony instead of constantly fighting to banish him? My personal quick answer is because grumbling isn’t good for me. There’s nothing harmonious about my grumbling under the influence of that sneaky dragon, nor does my grumbling lead to harmony […]

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Fight grumbling with gratitude

This week, in my quest to find the good, I’m looking at gratitude as a tool to defend against Grumblings. I keep a gratitude journal, off and on. When I use it, I do so right before I take my glasses off for sleep. I find it helps me go to sleep in a positive […]

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