Who Is In Our Mirror

Our eyes open to greet another day. Not everyone is as lucky. As we look at the one in the mirror, we allow negativity to flow from our tongues in a river of disdain. Curse the morning aches, the bills that drive us to break, and curse the fools around us. How fortunate we are to be alive is distant from our thoughts. How foolish we take life for granted. It’s easy to find the bad in every situation. Only the wise seek the good every moment, but we call them the crazies. The difference between a good day and a bad day is our perception. Whether we say we are having a good day or not, we are correct. We speak our fate into existence. Learn to love more, listen more, hate less, and talk less. We are born with two eyes, two ears, one nose, and one mouth. We are wise to use them in accordance.

Among those we meet today, who will fade away before tomorrow? Stay humble and be quick to show kindness. Will we bring joy or discomfort on their final day? Are we a beacon for happiness?

Never take life too seriously. Love the tolerant souls. They have found value in every aspect of life. Reject the intolerant. They spread hate and discontent with no end in sight. They are the antithesis of love. When we find happiness, we discover who we are. As kindness and compassion become us, the actions given will return. It is a universal law. People are quick to ask, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” “Bad things” happen to all, as “good things” happen as well. Life is not on our schedule. We must stay flexible and take each moment with a good heart.

Live a simple life. More moving parts equal a higher fail rate. This law of engineering is valid in our daily life as well. We have a lot on our plate. Piling more distractions does not improve our situation. Time is valuable. We only have a limited number of seconds on this Earth. Once the zero-hour hits, the dance is over. With no more course for correction, this is the moment we will see who is in our mirror.

Steve Curtis


OCEAN-5 Traits- Extroversion

Extroverts are outgoing, love to chat, social butterflies of the world. Engaging in conversations or activities provides a chance to recharge their batteries. Solitude stand back! These people have hands to shake, topics to discuss, and parties to attend.

My earlier post, Extrovert Happiness, covered many aspects of this trait. So why review it. Because, like many things in life, we change. People who are extroverts as young adults may grow to become more introverted. Without an understanding of this trait one may assume they are depressed or chemically unbalanced. We all have that one friend who specializes in WebMD.

The Good:

A person with a high score in extroversion loves to engage themselves. This can include activities, conversations, or community events. Their skill at networking is unsurpassed. They appear to know everyone (or they know a guy who knows a guy). A resource like this is great for sales, advertising, and event planning. Because they often interject they control the mood within a crowd.

The Bad:

They control the mood within the crowd. But we just said that in The Good section. Welcome to the two edged sword of negative and positive personalities. Believe it or not, not all extroverts are positive. Ever know a person who has nothing positive to say, and yet, they still interject. Maybe we fall into that category. Extroverts have a hard time working alone. They prefer group setting. This trait is evident in our youth. Some children shy away from group activities. While other children seem lost when forced to work alone. Adults do the same thing.

The Truth:

Most of us are ambiverts. A quick look into this trait was covered in Ambivert Happiness. As with the other traits we covered, our level of extroversion can change over time. Understanding how to maintain a positive mindset will enhance our happiness. We need to charge our batteries from time to time. Different traits require different environments. Learning the difference may prevent depression or anxiety.

I’ve seen introverts grow into extroverts and extroverts into introverts. Our interests and appreciations change over time. How boring of a life this would be if we never changed. We were meant for growth. Therefore, we were meant to learn.

What makes us happy now, may not satisfy that need as we get older. It would be wise for us to keep an open mind and watch those who have found their happiness. Someday we may find ourselves in their shoes. It would be nice to already have the answer when it arrives.

Until the next blog, live life, be happy, and find life’s happiness.


Steve Curtis

OCEAN-5 Traits- Openness

This week we start by jumping into the acronym with openness. Just as the word states, a person who scores high in the openness trait is more likely to be adventurous, social, and open-minded. New ideas and expressions tickle their interest. Creativity shines in the work they produce. A person of openness does not merely work, they spawn an expression.

The Good:

The imagination knows no limits. Unlike an overly analytical person, a person who thinks outside of the box will produce new solutions to new problems. This is why researchers, advertisers, designers, and landscapers need creativity. A person of openness is not afraid to ask what if. No, they dance outside of conventional thinking. Outgoing and adventurous, they seek new ideas and plow onward to unthought thoughts of thinkingness… and stuff. Thus, my friends, these majestic brainstormers cannot be entertained by Dolly Parton’s 9-5. They need substance; not monotony. For the love of jelly beans, do not cubicaltize (made up word) these poor souls.

The Bad:

What could be so bad with a little creativity? In a cookie cut world, flair and design is needed like a breath of fresh air; unless precession is needed time after time after time. There are things in this world that do require a lack of creativity. Working a non-stimulating factory assembly line job everyday, every month, for 40 some years is not for the person who craves new experiences. In tandem,  cubicle life, as mentioned earlier, can mentally drain a person who loves to meet new people on a daily basis. Or even worse, monotonous life can lead a person of openness to depression. The lack of inspiration, creativity, or problem solving can be mentally damaging.

The Truth:

It is rare that a person scores absolute on openness. Honestly, most of us score somewhere in the middle. We have a healthy balance between “what is” and “what if”. We need to be mindful of those who like change, and those who embrace a monotonous lifestyle. Never assume a person of openness is creative or a great problem solver. They may be adventurous or love meeting new people.  Understanding this trait and how we fall within it will help us understand how we act and react to our environment.

Keep in mind that we can change our trait score.  Perhaps not overnight, but it can be done. A person who refrains from being social and open to new experiences can learn to enjoy meeting new people and trying new things. As we go through life we change. Our likes and interests in our 20’s no longer seem to be in view in our 40’s. Don’t think it’s true?  Try partying with 20 year olds when you turn 40. Like a slap in the face reality shows us how much we have changed. As stated in the Introductory Blog please do not run out and try to change others. This is for us to self-evaluate and assess what changes we need. This is how we become the person we want to be. Or, maintain the person we love being.

There we have. Come back next week as we explore conscientiousness.

Until the next blog, live life, be happy, and find life’s happiness.


Steve Curtis

OCEAN-5 Traits-Intro

This week we are starting a new segment geared towards our personality. Get ready as we begin to dissect our soul, or that tender part that makes us feel … feelings … and stuff. 

Moving on!

 Characternaturedispositiontemperamentmakeuppersonapsyche, and identity all describe our personality. So, what is personality, and why is it important? Imagine, if you will, a life without personality. Smiles and frowns would not exist. We would go about our business without emotional impulses. Music, dancing, even corny dad jokes would not have a place in this world. <Scream> The horror!

Our personality plays a huge role in who we are and how we interact with others. Are we open to new ideas or do we have a death grip on tradition? (The song from Fiddler on the Roof is now stuck in my head.) Perhaps we are neurotic (moody) in the most extreme way. Is that bad or wrong? Not in the least, so long as we treat others well and keep our negative disposition and anxieties in check. And that my friends is where the Big 5 Traits come in.

There are other tests and personality defining tools out there. However, as of today, there isn’t a single test that fits everyone. That is how unique we are across the board. Even the Big 5 falls short. However, I love it for it’s simplicity and the traits score changes as we change. So, without further adieu, I present the Big 5 traits.

Think of OCEAN and the five traits become easier to remember.

Openness – Those that score high here are creative, abstract thinkers, and may love new challenges.

Conscientiousness – High scores here point to a thoughtful, goal oriented and organized person. Attention to detail may be a top priority.

Extroversion – (also written extraversion) Expressive, loves to converse, and finds meeting new people rewarding may define a top scorer in this category.

Agreeableness – Score high here and we may find a person who cares about others. They tend to be more of a team player; as opposed to a competitive person.

Neuroticism – Anxiety and stress may plague this high-scorer. They may be the one to get upset with ease.

There you have it folks the five traits we will cover through the next several weeks. We’ll cover the good, bad, and the ugly side of each personality. It’s all in an effort to help learn what makes us act the way we do. And, how to change. Seriously, people can change their personality. With that being said… Do no run out to annoying people and tell them to change or how to change. That would be uncouth. To the level of uncouthness that uncouth would shout “I’m not like that!” Don’t be that person. This is for us to use so that we may become better towards those around us. Or so that we may become the person we want to be.

So, until the next blog live life, be happy, and find life’s happiness.


Steve Curtis


The Light Bulb

Darkness envelops the room.  Each step is  made with caution; remembering key item placement. Recollection of past encounters with the sofa, end table, and recliner intensifies the “Marco Polo” moment.

A flip of the light switch would be capital. Instead, a little toe cringes with each step. A noise from the darkness brings inquiries filled with hair raising fear.  The black canvass builds the perfect stage for imagination to dance on. One can almost see a clown with a knife-filled smile. Or perhaps the coat rack makes the perfect clown mannequin. Either way, expletives were announced.

The hand glides along a painted sheetrock wall until the target is found. A single flick chases the darkness away. Another pinky toe is saved. Though completed many times before with different results, an enlightened thought enters the room.

Does the light bulb know the darkness, or does the luminary friend merely shine; unaware of the salvation?

Positive people bring happiness as a light bulb brings peace of mind. The depression, stress, and tension melt within a single smile. Hope is found in the realm of a friendship; not realizing the peace and happiness captured in the moment.

How sad the world would be without a light bulb.

The Battle Within A Soul

Darkness envelops as fear takes hold.

Anxiety clouds the mind.

A dry throat reveals the nervousness within.

Hopelessness beckons the heart as despair soon follows.

These to behemoths have quenched the life out of millions and seek millions more.

Salvation seems so far away.

However , a truth resides deep within.

Darkness can only reach an absolute value. Once the light is completely extinguished darkness has reached it’s full capacity.

But, light has no limitations. What starts as a spark soon wisps into a flickering flame.

Forced to back throttle, darkness loses it hold. A roaring fire quickly illuminates everything. Darkness will always have it’s shadows, but light will always control the shadows. Thus, continues the battle within the soul.