Schools are failing our children. They don’t teach typing anymore. They also don’t teach spelling or real math…
I learned to type on a typewriter. Yes, I know that means I am old. The typewriter, for you young’uns, is a machine about as big as a microwave. You hit the keys and the words slowly appear on the page. You can backspace, but there is no delete key. You correct your work by ripping up the paper you use correction fluid. Or like me, you can use duct tape.
You may be a fast typer, a one finger typer, a swiper, a voice commander or an old school pen to paper person. However you get the words out, you need to know these four keys.
The four keys that can change your story.
1. The Pause Key – Slowing down and pausing is the beginning of something great. There is a reason that we need to breath in before we run, jump, get a needle, take the zipline or do almost anything. Pausing creates potential energy. Pausing builds momentum.
Begin by pausing. Some call it prayer, others call it meditation, some prefer just to breathe or maybe drink a coffee. Whatever works for you, pause. (For a different take on this, see The Daily Semicolon)
2. The Shift Key – Changing pace is hard work. Most workplaces have change management strategies, change management experts and stories that help us think differently about change. Managing change can be a full time job.
No one else controls your shift key. Some prefer to go small case and others like all CAPS. I don’t care. Just know that you are in charge of your own Shift. If you are stuck down or stuck up, it will mostly just affect you. Sometimes though, your Shift may spill over and stink up the whole place!
Shifting is good for us. It keeps us flexible. There is a reason why sitting all of the time is bad for us, because we get constipated (mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually). Shifting (changing position, changing how we do things, changing our mindset or our ideas) gets the blood going, the mental juices flowing and yes it makes us uncomfortable. These things keep us alive. You are the only one who can control your Shift, but don’t mess with anyone else’s Shift!
3. The Question Key – Questions are the gateway drugs that lead to surprises. And surprises lead to laughter. We all need more laughter, so ask more questions. I tell people all of the time that in the Mental Health field, we get paid per question. Then we all laugh and the questions fly. Go ahead, steal that one… just give me the cred!
4. The Escape Key – This gem of a key is all by itself on the keyboard. There is a reason for that. Sometimes we need to know how to get out of a jam. Knowing who to call is one key to staying sane. What and who helps you to escape? Do you go for a walk, do a craft or hobby, read fiction or meditate? How do you escape? The keyboard screams at you and I to take an escape, are you listening?
Don’t wait for permission, make the keys work for you. The keys to the life you want are at your fingers.
Keep it real