You’re the Editor

Today I want to share a very entertaining video with you! The name of the creator’s YouTube channel is “Editing is Everything” and I agree with that statement! Dani uses her editing skills to showcase how the same story can be retold in ways that give a completely different impression of its style or even overall purpose. The concept is more than entertaining; it illustrates a new angle to take when interpreting things that happen in life!

(Warning: decide now that YouTube won’t lead you away…)

Editing is not just for movie trailers, of course. It’s for political campaign ads and what we think of our neighbors; it’s news and statistics brought to you through someone else’s lens; it’s why two people sitting at the same table might leave a restaurant with opposite reviews of how the evening went. It’s all in how we (often unconsciously) edit the information we’re presented with.

We all have a part of our brain that does the service of filtering information that comes in, since there is always too much sensory input to consciously process at once. The reticular activating system helps us “skim” email topics, filter out ambient sounds or what people are wearing, and pay attention only when it matches sought-after information. This level of pattern recognition helps us function brilliantly, but it also means we miss things we weren’t looking for. It can also make us unconsciously rely on filters that force others to fit within the patterns we know. We don’t need to accept every bias our minds present us with; it’s our duty to regularly challenge our assumptions!

How can we do that? Next time you’re on social media, think to yourself; do I really have a whole view of this person, now that I’ve read this single online comment they made (often seen out of context)? What if I know some details about them, like how much money they make, and which country their family is from? Then is that enough? Of course not. What about the human tendency to focus on the negative? Should we judge every individual and organization by the worst things they’ve ever done? The bugs in an app, the worst service ever provided, or the worst score you’ve had on a test? Go easy on yourself, and please go easy on each other! Whether strangers in the news or long time friends, I would ask that you try to give others the benefit of the doubt. Remember everyone is reacting to their current circumstances through the lens of their past experiences. We almost never have their full story.

How do you view the people in your life? Do you really have the full story, or just an edited version?

Photo by Obregonia D. Toretto from Pexels

So, how was your day, really? YOU choose which footage to keep and what to leave on the cutting room floor. I’ve decided I’m embracing the parts I want to embrace, and letting the rest go whenever I can.

When it comes to how I think of myself, I can write about favorite memories of each day when I write in my journal, rather than only reiterate the negative. Recording the best bits influences my recollection, increases my satisfaction, AND it changes what I skim for the next day… win-win!

I’m loving this realization, how about you? Have you ever wished that someone else would “edit” their recollection of the past, so they would perceive you differently? Is there anything in your life that you might find to be less upsetting you if you could just looked at it differently? You’re the editor, right?

Think Differently!

I Need to Declutter & Here’s a Glimmer of Hope

Admission: I have spent several months with one foot in my business project, and one foot in being a stay-at-home mom (that was my full-time gig up until this year when my youngest daughter started preschool – now it’s only most of time!) I find myself not really being able to give my heart to either very effectively in the moments that I need to. Over the years I’ve become anxious of taking the plunge into ADD-hyperfocus mode, which has kept me just short of finishing some fabulous ideas which are sitting at about 90% done. I want to do more.

Today I started a Skillshare class, and it is REALLY good, you guys! It’s by motivational speaker and life coach TJ Walker, and he calls it How to Organize your Home Effectively. I knew I would get more motivated to tackle the house if I watched it listened to something on the subject. One of the important questions he asked is for us to define our “why?”

My why: I want to feel unburdened so I can start my blog/business without all the guilt. I’ve heard that clutter is a result of indecision, and I’m finding clutter also creates MORE indecision, since I can’t decide whether to work on the clutter or something more meaningful to me.

So now as I approach decluttering, I’m thinking it’s actually best for me to cultivate a mindset, not motivation and willpower and focus, or determination and endurance. I need to just get in the mindset of being decisive. I don’t even need to feel “inspired”. I don’t even need to do it for very long at once.

Being decisive doesn’t mean I know I’m making “the right choice”. It means I’m able and willing to handle the consequences of whatever choice I make. It’s kind of like being… Confident.

There you go, a little motivation for both of us and a blog post written in only 30 minutes! Write YOUR “why” in the comments; in other words, the reason you want to do this hard thing, whatever is staring you in the face, then go do it! 🥰

Update: Important realization – I still had to get myself used to the idea of doing it even once I made the decision. Once I started, I gradually gained momentum. Nowhere near where I want to be, but I can’t expect to do it all in a day (maybe that’s why I keep hesitating? Is that my unrealistic expectation?) I am glad to have the advice from any geniuses out there with suggestions for keeping up on papers!

What’s Blocking Your Path?

“I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.”

Charles R. Swindoll

The other day my youngest daughter was putting up our play chairs all in a row to make a path for her to walk across. The problem was that her path was blocking my path. As I came up to her creation, my hands were full of things I was trying to carry to the kitchen.

“Great,” I muttered to myself, “now I can’t get through.”

My daughter had “blocked” my way with chairs, and the other end of the table was even more blocked because we’re remodeling. I decided she’d better move her little project somewhere else.

“Wait, what?” I questioned myself, “Did I seriously just say I can’t about this tiny little problem? This obstacle is totally surmountable!”

My daughter came in the room and asked innocently, “Do you like the path I made?”

“Yes, I do!” I proclaimed. Honestly, I didn’t even have to move the row aside in any way, I only had to step over to get to the other side. Fortunately for her, Mommy had been learning about perceived mental barriers, otherwise I might have felt irritated or even overwhelmed. Instead I was excited, and I wanted to share my insight with you!

I felt cheerful every time I saw the “Great Wall of Chairs” that I had to step over, because my brain was continually registering the assignment as impossible, and I kept practicing overriding that thought. It was strangely empowering. I was even motivated to sweep the floor (well enough to take a picture). 😉

Not every obstacle we run up against is so simple. Life is complicated and life is hard, but try to avoid telling yourself, “it’s TOO hard.” That’s called mental resistance. Having mental resistance about a problem we face only makes it more difficult to solve, or more difficult to endure.

Your brain is programmed to protect you from expending too much energy, and it tells you to avoid anything difficult or stressful. That kind of programming can work for us or against us. Don’t be afraid of the effort it will take to tackle a problem that at first seems too hard to face; or to experience a feeling that seems too hard to feel.

Those of us with ADHD experience a LOT of mental resistance when it comes to doing the most ordinary, mundane things. Rather than trying to escape, next time you run up against a wall of something you “can’t” get over, challenge that thought. Doubt what your brain is programmed to tell you, and see if your problem really can be overcome. Perhaps with more effort, and more external support, I hope you can feel empowered to do all kinds of things you never thought you could!

That is one of the great hopes I have for this blog; that it will inspire you to reach and grow beyond your own expectations. Start small, and when you notice an obstacle, you can think of it as an opportunity to practice overcoming.

Share what you learn! I’m excited to see what you come up with, and how a difference in perspective changed an experience for you!

Feel Like a Fraud When You Only Post Your “Best”?

Imagine with me: An artist you know and admire has a big gallery showing. After a successful opening evening, she laments privately to you, “People see my art and they think I’m great, but in reality I make a LOT more half-hearted doodles than I make masterpieces. Some of them are so terrible I just throw them away! My studio is a mess, I constantly forget to clean my brushes or prep my canvas… Last week I was totally late on delivering an order; I’m just a terrible artist! I present only my best to everyone, and it looks as if I’m always nailing it -I might even make it look easy- but it’s not the truth. If people knew the real me, with all my do-overs and mistakes, they wouldn’t be impressed at all. I’m really just a fraud.”

Would you empathetically nod your head and agree? Would you feel disillusioned and think she’s a fake after hearing this? No way! Most likely you would be completely shocked and say, “WHAT!??”

The idea of having such a lowly view of ourselves and backward expectations like the example of this artist seems ridiculous, yet are you doing this to yourself?

Do you give yourself a Pinterest-perfect standard where you aren’t allowed to leave cups on the table and crumbs on the floor (or books layered with crayons and banana peels, depending on your stage of life)? Does your internal voice seem to be saying, “Better Homes and Gardens could pop over any moment for a photoshoot, and girl they are judging you!” I would love to encourage you to have a more authentic standard where you allow yourself to be imperfect, but if you’ve ever cleared off just one corner of the table to take a clean photo of the cute cupcake you made, at least don’t feel guilty about THAT! Go ahead and celebrate what you accomplished, because life is hard enough without stressing about the details you cropped out of the picture.

Was Thomas Edison defined by the fact that he had 999 failed inventions? No, he was praised for his persistence and admired for his success! Baseball players strike out more than they hit home runs. A radio announcer doesn’t always talk in his radio announcer voice (I would hope) in social situations; he needs to be able to relax his voice and and focus more on what he’s saying, not only how he’s saying it. A therapist can’t be expected to practice dedicated therapy with everyone she interacts with, every moment of every day, carefully balancing empathy with impartiality; that would be emotionally exhausting! Remember, Olympic runners still walk from one place to the other way more often than they run. You have to do that, too.

Good parents are still not perfect parents every minute of their lives. It would be fabulous if we could always be an amazing beacon of patience and wisdom and creative memory-making!! The reality is, sometimes you get distracted or irritated and wish you could be doing something else. Children often fall apart after coming home after a long day of barely holding it together, because they are with their family and they feel safe. Sometimes you need to check out and take a break, too, or you’ll burn out and lose your cool. Keep in mind, when you do lose your cool, it doesn’t undo ALL those other moments when you gave it your whole heart. Earlier I used the analogy of a runner; I believe a runner could permanently lose the use of his legs, but he’s still a world record-breaker and Olympic medalist for the rest of his life.

There is hope in being able to create strategies to get to a high performance level more often or more easily, but as humans, we can’t expect to perform all day all the time, then beat ourselves up over an occasional lapse in judgement or performance. Nobody can run at 100% capacity for 100% of the time.

Look at what you’ve created, you should be proud of it! Consider any mediocre efforts as “practice”. We all need practice. Maybe you make doodles and sketches a lot more often than you have masterpiece moments, but that doesn’t mean those moments don’t count.

From bright ideas to dark days, when you have lifted someone else’s burden, or you’ve needed someone else to lift yours, try to accept all those wonderful, complicated parts of yourself. Your impact, like ripples in the water, echoes on and on, first within your circle of influence, then your community, and continues on through time to people unknowable.

Sometimes you may feel like a fraud, the only one hiding your frail humanity, but you’re not alone. You think you’re struggling against the odds to do any good at all, but don’t define yourself by your doodles! Maybe it’s our nature to characterize ourselves by our most undesirable qualities, but if you could take a step back, I wish you could see; You are more than a work in progress, you’re already a masterpiece.

Morning Motivation

Waking up early is well known as a habit adopted by many successful people. Getting a jump on the day helps us avoid that feeling of being rushed and constantly behind. It’s also well established that people develop habits best when we have positive motivation, or better yet, a little instant gratification! Do you know what has ended up being the force behind my drive to get up early recently? Getting the chance to see a beautiful sunrise 😍😍😍!

I’m slightly obsessed with clouds from an artistic standpoint, and I yearn to unlock the mystery of how to properly paint them.

Being bathed in a warm glow as pops of pink travel across the sky is a bit more real and powerful than checking boxes on a list or making an “unbroken chain” on an app. I do recommended using those mechanical methods when you need to, but find yourself a little joy whenever you are able. Learn to crave it!*

Today I was that crazy lady walking outside on the culdesac in her bathrobe (not a practice I recommend in most places) taking pictures of the sky, because life is BEAUTIFUL! (Can you tell yet that it put me in a good mood?) When I get eccentric I remind myself of my maternal grandmother, and then that only encourages me. 😄

I dragged my junior high kids out to join me (they are the reason I have to get up by 6:00, after all…) One rolled her eyes and went back in the house, the other got excited right along with me, and waved to the neighbors who were getting ready for their morning commute, calling out, “Look at the sky!”

“Oh! Hey there bud,” I whispered, “let’s not actually draw attention to ourselves!” (Sometimes that child is more Grandmamom than I am!) I ducked inside. For a minute. Then I couldn’t resist going back out one last time!

The glorious thing about the sky is that it’s available for any of us who seek it. Our view may be limited, but we can make the choice to either cast our eyes upward, or just continue about our day, perhaps complaining about the glare that makes it difficult to drive. Take a look around you, what do you have that you might have overlooked that can help pull you toward your goals? If you need help with some perspective here, schedule a Creative Consultation with me and we can talk about how to apply this concept to areas you may need motivation in your life.

*Developing a craving for a habit is a concept I learned from The Power of Habit, by Charles Duhigg. Purchasing a copy through my affiliate link helps support this blog https://amzn.to/33BY4mP Or create an Amazon list of books to check out at your local library, and save this there!

Have we met?

Have you ever had an “Ah-ha!” moment so big, you just wanted to share it with the whole world!? Maybe it’s a book you loved, or a truth you discovered, or a hack that someone else shared with you. I feel like I’ve recently had about two years worth of Ah-ha’s, and it’s time that I start to share them! I am thrilled to begin publishing ideas and inspiration in the form of artistic visuals and perhaps videos, but I can’t wait for every detail to be perfected in order for me to be ready to share. I’m ready to share now!


My name is Janina Glass, and I am the mother of some awesome kiddos who have come to my husband and I through birth as well as through the blessing of adoption. I am an artist, a writer, a performer, and a lifelong learner. I also have ADHD, which is kind of like always having shoelaces untied as I wander about my brain trying to remember where I set my toast. (If that made any sense to you at all, I deeply apologize. Welcome to the club!) It can be pretty comical, though often frustrating, depending how I choose to look at it that day.

I remember at about age 15 having the first of many ah-hah moments. I read a book that changed my outlook on life. It was <a href="http://<iframe style="width:120px;height:240px;" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=janinadawn-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=0312144776&asins=0312144776&linkId=0668e13be36a810821cb69e82ab900d7&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff"> How to Argue and Win Every Time, by Gerry Spence. It’s been while, so I don’t remember all the details, though I do recall my mother seeing it in my hands and suddenly looking very concerned that her argumentative teenage daughter may be holding a lethal weapon! It really was a good thing; it opened up my mind to the world of personal growth, and I was hooked!

There were two profound truths in it for me:

  1. My definition of “winning” was all wrong. It wasn’t about proving my point, or the other party admitting I was right. Sometimes winning was choosing not to pursue the argument, sometimes it was deciding that the relationship was more valuable than the conflict. That can be winning too, to just walk away.
  2. We are the most persuasive when we are simply revealing the honest, vulnerable truth.

I believe the most valuable thing I can bring to you will be delivered from my own place of vulnerability, which will hopefully lead you, dear reader, to a place of greater strength. My goal is to keep each post readably brief and readily actionable. So for today I will simply leave you with those thoughts I gleaned from Gerry Spence, summarized in my own words:
Be honest in all you say, be brave as you reveal your true self, and be willing to let go of what does not ultimately matter most.

honest brave willing to let go infographic