Learning About Problem Solving.

Hello everyone.

Today has been a fairly quiet day for me.  My Online Personal Development course is still going very well, I had the third instalment of it this morning.   I have been enjoying it.  Today's session was about dealing with problems (and coming up with solutions).  I certainly would not say I was the best 'problem solver' in the world, so I found some of the options that they came up with on how to deal with these problems was quite logical, and not all that hard to combat.    

A few of the main points I took away from today's session were as follows:

Identify and define the problem.

Collect all the current and relevant information.

Why is it a problem in the first place? Why is it a problem?

What are the solutions? What options are there to combat the problem? Begin to apply.

Record the results.  What have been the effects of the solution?

Standardise the solution if it was successful.

And lastly...

Record the results of the solution and how effective it was in order to be able to use the process again.

If the problem was not sorted however, then you have to go back to the solutions process and come up with something else, but it should be just as easy to go through it all again. You may have to check all the details and maybe ask more questions, but I have found this process really easy to understand, and I feel personally I could use it myself, especially if I was in work.  The key is basically having ALL the correct and relevant information before you start.   I certainly find that helps.  I am really loving this process.  It's so simple and easy to follow.   One of the things I have done is a spider diagram.  I also finds this helps me to combat a problem, particularly in work.  It's a really good way of highlighting all the key points of the issue you are trying to solve. 

Learning problem solving is such a great life tool to have, and the important thing is don't over complicate it.  I think what I need to do is just have a go at practising my problem solving techniques.  You know, maybe come up with some scenarios and watch a few more YouTube videos to get more key information, read and share posts from social media, that always gives you plenty of ideas.   I do really enjoy learning about it.

Anyhoo.  I have just got back from a little golfing session with my boyfriend as it was a really lovely evening tonight.  I find golf very relaxing anyway, but I after tonight's golfing games, I have discovered that golfing on a summer's evening is even more therapeutic than playing during the day.   I loved it tonight.   There was no one else on the course accept me and Lee, and it was amazing.  Had so much fun and did a couple of good shots tonight too I thought.  I really enjoyed it.  

So for the rest of this evening I have been chilling out, (because I'm certainly not just go and dive into using my newly found problem solving skills straight away) with a cup of tea, whilst writing this post and having the first bite out of my belated Easter gift off a good friend of mine, named Jen, who lives in America.   It's a white chocolate Magical Easter Unicorn (as I do love my unicorns very much) and it's just such an amazing taste and texture.  I'm telling you, that won't last for long, but I am really enjoying it. 

Definitely had a good day today.  And we all like good days.

Thanks for reading

Sarah x

Preparing To Go Back To Work After Lockdown.

Although it has not yet been clarified exactly what date I will be returning to work, I know that my furloughed days are slowly coming to a close.   This of course does not bother me at all because I'm actually quite looking forward to going back to work, despite all the restrictions and complications the Coronia Virus may still present.    I definitely feel as thought I have been off work far too long.   I'm getting withdrawal symptoms, haha.   At the end of the day everyone has to work.   We all have to earn money to live, and most importantly to have a life.   I think that as long as the safety precautions and measures in my place of work have been set up and implemented.... I am quite happy to go back in a week or two.

I do feel like me taking up blogging again during this lockdown time has helped me a great deal in terms of having something to motivate me into doing, even if it only once or twice a week.  There has been two things now to do with blogging that I have done in the last week that unbelievably I have never done before.   In all the ten years I have been blogging (on and off) this has been the first time I have ever managed to create a 'Follow By Email', and also, it's been the first time I have ever actually played around with any sort of coding.   That is without majorly mucking it up as well.   MailChimp, who I have gone with, do give you a really clear step by step guide on how to implement the code onto your blog, and I found it really easy to set up.   I am genuinely so pleased I have done it.    

I have had another little challenge today.   Having received some correspondence via Gmail from my place of work in regards to returning in a couple of weeks, I have been offered a free online course that will hopefully help to prepare me for going back into work.    This course will cover a number of important tips that will help me to get back into work, and working in an environment where 'safety' is priority, including sections such as Health and Safety, Social Distancing, Problem Solving, Personal Productivity and Mental Health to name a few of them.  I think I may find that, because I do work in retail, the social distancing and the space awareness part of the course is going to be very useful.  It said in my original email that there were only limited spaces available for it, and it is basically a webinar with some follow up questions that you have to submit online.  

Personally, managing my mental health is very important to me because it is a big part of my life. I thought I would find it very useful as a guide to help me get back into work, and having read through all of the topics for discussion, and spoken to the people involved (via email) I do think I would definitely benefit from the course.  It even has a couple of quizzes at the end of each section.   I like quizzes.   I am genuinely really pleased Sports Direct have done this for us, it sounds really very good.  The course starts on Tuesday next week so we shall see how it goes.

Having also played a little game of golf this afternoon with my boyfriend, as it has been a lovely sunny day out there and not too hot, I feel a lot more chilled out and relaxed than I was this morning.  I am even feeling a bit more relaxed about going back to work in a couple of weeks.   In fact, truth be told I am so relieved I still have a job.

Thanks for reading.

Sarah x

Discovering Subscribe By Email.

Today has been an interesting day for me.  Like others, as a blogger I have tried many different things over the years.   For example, deciding between Blogger and WordPress.  Deciding what I want to write about, which theme I want, experimenting with different color palettes, text style, how to insert photos into my blog posts which I seem recall took a lot longer than I thought it would.  Integrating social media, sharing my posts, attempting, and failing dismally to monetize my blog on numerous occasions.  These are all really important things for a blogger.   There has always been one other thing I have never managed to achieve in all my ten years of being a Blogger, and that was integrating (successfully) a 'Subscribe By Email' component.    Until today.   

I was initially looking at, which I know does come highly recommended, however, on closer inspection I decided to explore other options and this is why I ended up going with  And being totally truthful, I have heard a lot more about them.

They actually have a free plan, which I didn't know.  In my opinion it is quite basic, the email capture box itself looks simple, but also quite effective.  It was easy to set up, you just put in the details of your site, and it gives you a step by step guide on how to include their code into your blog, which was actually the first time I have ever 'played around' with coding on a website.  I found it was a lot easier than I thought it was going to be to set up, and I am so pleased I decided on the MailChimp site because they had exactly what I wanted, and a bit more.    How effective it is going to be only time will tell.  But to be fair, having ANY sort of 'subscribe by email' option is better than not having anything at all.  And I could still try the Sumo site too if I wanted.

Of course it is possible that no one will want to subscribe to my waffle, which is absolutely fine.  I will take no offence at all.   But at least the option is there for anybody who would like to.

It has been a little bit of a learning curve for me today.   Just when you think you know everything there is to blogging and what it entails.  I learnt today that it's good to investigate all the options when it comes to adding extras to your blog.  Whether that be email subscriptions, or adding a new theme you discover and want to have for your blog,and I think its really important to make sure you explore different sites before you part with any money, because there may just be a 'free' option for what you are looking for, even with a well known site, and if you are happy with that and the way it looks on your blog, and of course you think it will work for you, just stick with that.  It could save you a fortune.

Thanks for reading.

Sarah x

Living In Strange Times.

Blogging is something I have done on and off for almost ten years now.  I say on and off because I created this particular blog about two years ago.    After being committed to blogging on this Blogger website/platform for a good part of a year I knocked it on the head simply because I wasn't getting out of it what I wanted. 

Believing it was just the 'platform' that I seemed to not get on with anymore, I switched to Wordpress for the second time.  However, based on the fact I did not 
want a self-hosted blog, purely because last time I explored that option it became very expensive and in the end I still did not get a website/blog that I could say I was proud of.    Also, I had got to the point where I had put far too much time and effort into writing about stuff that I thought I should have been writing about because of what other bloggers were doing, and writing about to get noticed, that's when I soon realised I had started to lose my way a bit.   

In short, I had stopped writing for myself.
So why you ask have I suddenly decided to start blogging again now. Honestly, I wanted to try it again because...we're still in lockdown (for now) due to Covid 19, and I was a bit bored and fancied doing something different, or rather something I've done before, but not for a long time, for a change. Simple as that.    

Like a lot of people I have been on lockdown and for some time now, which is fine, however truth be told, I've had enough now and if safety measures are correctly implemented at my place of work I would be quite happy to go back there, and hopefully get the rest of retail in my home town of Lincoln back to normalcy.   Safety of course is still the number one priority here, but the sooner the country's economy can once again lift itself off the ground, the better I say.    

My anxiety levels have not been particularly that great either, and two weeks ago it even contributed to my being poorly.  And I hate being ill, I really do.   I can imagine a lot of people out there are also feeling the same way right now too.  But you can work through it.  Sometimes all you need to do is take a little time for yourself.   Chill out a bit. 
Another big change in my life since I last blogged is I now have a boyfriend.   I have finally, after being single for roughly 13 years since my last relationship (that's a long time I know)  I found on New Years Day, the perfect gentleman in Lee.   He is so lovely, and I love him very much.    I haven't seen him much, not physically anyway in the last couple of months because of lockdown.   I have only seen him from afar.   We stood talking in the Tescos car park for about 20 minutes yesterday.   As you do!

We also FaceTime every night.  So it's a good thing technology has moved on, which of course is another big change I have seen since the last time I blogged.

For the majority of lockdown I have been painting.   In the garden mostly.  When the weather has been suitable obviously.   So far I have painted the shed, the fence, our wooden double chair that we have, and some storage shelving, where mum keeps all the gardening stuff, and I have stained the decking, where we have a really nice new seating area.   I have really enjoyed doing that.   I have also been doing a lot of colouring.  I find that during these really weird times we are living in, it's good to find something that will take your mind of things so you become less anxious and just relax a bit.  People have their own ways of dealing with stress, I have found that so far colouring has been working pretty well for me.   I've also been watching, or re-watching I should say, a fair few of the Marvel movies.  You seriously cannot beat a good Superhero movie to boost happiness in my opinion.    They definitely provide the 'feelgood' factor.  

The Marvel movies are something I could just re-watch over and over again because I really do love them.   Stan Lee really did leave some really big shoes to be filled, whoever tries to take over from him.   No one will ever be able to match Stan Lee in greatness in my opinion.   

Let's just all hope lockdown can be eased soon too.   And as much as I have really enjoyed having some time off work, I am ready to go back now and get back into everything.  I can't believe it but, by the time I go back I have a feeling we shall all be on a countdown to bloody Christmas.   Cest la vie.

Take Care




Learning About Problem Solving.

Hello everyone. Today has been a fairly quiet day for me.  My Online Personal Development course is still going very well, I had the third i...