My Thumb Hurts

I stabbed it on something sharp in my purse this morning as I was rushing to get out of the house and make my train.

My purse is a bit of a minefield, so I’m not even sure exactly what the offending object was.

My thumb bled a little bit and now it has a dull ache under the nail which is making it quite hard to type, particularly on my blackberry.

So it hurts….literally.

But it also hurts… figuratively.

The constant state at which I (like I am sure many of you) are texting, typing, twittering etc. Is giving me a thumb ache.

It used to be at the end of the day I’d feel my weariness behind my eyes.

Now it’s my aching thumb.

It makes me wonder about these prehensile digits. Will they really begin to grow to enormous sizes like in that book “Even Cowgirls Get the Blues” by Tom Robbins .(Loved the book, never saw the movie).

Will we start do thumb exercises on newborns and toddlers to give them a leg up in the 21st century?

Maybe it’s a sign that I need to ease up on my steady digital diet.

Or maybe it just means I should just be more diligent about cleaning the sharp objects out of my purse.

That’s my point of view. What’s your twist?
Do your thumbs ever hurt?

Show Some Respect

It blows my mind how rude and oblivious some people are.

I went to my daughter’s middle school concert last night, and much to my dismay the woman in front of me (a mother, I presume) was texting on her phone for the better part of an hour and a half show.

What could possibly be so important?

Unless this woman is Jack Bauer about to save the world on 24, a death row lawyer with a client waiting for a reprieve or the head of organ transplants at a local hospital…I honestly can’t imagine what can’t wait.

Because here’s the thing – no matter how discreet you try to be it’s annoying and distracting to people around you.

I could see the blue glow from her phone. And I bet some of the kids on stage, who’ve been working so hard preparing the show, could too.

Let’s show some respect for other people’s ideas, hard work, and creativity.

It’s not just middle school performances where this is happening. It’s also in Broadway audiences, and frankly, it’s making me think twice lately about going to a show.

The message at the beginning of a stage performance (or movie) to put your cell phones on vibrate is a great start. There’s nothing worse than an unwanted ring interrupting a beautiful performance.

But let’s not stop there. Let’s ban all absolutely non-emergency checking of phones and Blackberry’s. I understand the addiction, my thumbs are as itchy and twitchy as the next person’s.

But out of respect for the artists, be they 12 years old or 120, let’s resist the urge.

Put the device down and put those fingers to better use clapping ecstatically to reward the efforts of the people with enough passion, drive, and courage to be up on the stage (or screen).

That’s my point of view. What’s your twist?

Is unchecked texting ruining your ability to enjoy a good performance?

Silence is Golden

How much silence do you have in your life?

If you are even a bit like me, silence may not be that “golden” to you.

It might be something that you actively avoid…for fear of boredom, or wasted time, or out of an addiction to constantly checking all the “noisy” connector devices in our lives (e.g. cell phones, Blackberry’s Facebook etc).

Well, I am trying to overcome my aversion to silence.

I’m actually trying to embrace it.

Because in my constant need to be in touch and engaged all the time, I am realizing that I am drowning out the sound of my own thoughts. And my own creativity.

I commute every day in and out of Grand Central on a train route that has the most incredible views of the Hudson River.

But rather than enjoying the view and savoring this 35 minutes of “quiet time”, I check my email, check my Twitter, check my Facebook updates, read a book, read a magazine, etc. etc.

So I am now on an enforced “silence appreciation” mode. For at least a few times a week, I purposely keep the Blackberry in my purse, I don’t stop at Hudson News and buy the latest magazine, I keep my book club book in my briefcase…and I look out the window.

This is actually much more difficult than it sounds.

Especially for the first few minutes. I can literally hear my Blackberry calling out to me, like a Siren.

I purposely don’t put on my ipod, because I think that’s just substituting one kind of “noise” for another.

But if I can hold out for the first few minutes, and keep my eyes focused out the window- gradually I begin to relax and let my mind wander.

And slowly I find myself listening instead to the voices inside my head. Not the scary Sybil kind. The kind that open up new possibilities. Even new ideas for blog posts (like this one).

Don’t assume you are getting enough silence. Try to be more conscious of opportunities to tune out the world and tune in to your own voice.

You might just like what you hear.

That’s my point of view. What’s your twist?

Are you getting enough quiet time?

The Hills are Alive

Spring is finally here, time to lighten up.

I was walking to the train today, and I couldn’t help smile when I saw the bright and brave daffodils popping up everywhere.

Then I got into work and recieved this fabulous video of a “impromptu” dance set to a classic song from the Sound of Music in the Antwerp Train station. It’s definitely worth checking out and guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

These two things completely lifted my spirits and reminded me how absolutely grumpy I’ve been feeling lately.

What’s this got to do with innovation?

Well, at the risk of being mind-numbingly obvious it’s hard to create when we’re feeling deflated. I know that some say great pain is the source of great artistry. But for me at least, when it comes to branding it’s the opposite. I need some good vibes to get the juices flowing.

So my advice if your feeling stuck is get out of the office go find a field of daffodils…or at least a traffic median filled with tulips, pick up your wide-brimmed straw hat and start running over those Austrian hills… or whatever grass or even parking lot you happen to have nearby.

Lighten up and let the ideas shine through!

That’s my point of view. What’s your twist?

What are you doing these days to lighten up?