How to Maintain “Cheerful Giving” Throughout the Holidays! — Sparky Jen “No Beating Around the Bush Allowed!”


‘Tis the season to be jolly, not jaded. Joyfully give and receive, but do so cheerfully, and consciously. However… If you are already feeling “holi-whelmed” by Christmas gimme gimme gimme, then I have some tips for you. You are very welcome!

via How to Maintain “Cheerful Giving” Throughout the Holidays! — Sparky Jen “No Beating Around the Bush Allowed!”

An Efficient Homemade Wood furnace — Hackaday


For poor [workshop from scratch], winter brings the joy of a cold workshop. Since the building is structurally made from tin, warming up the room is difficult. Naturally, the solution was to construct a homemade wood furnace. The build starts off with an angle grinder being taken to a compressed air tank. After sawing off…

via An Efficient Homemade Wood furnace — Hackaday

How Not to Waste Your Life!

When you’re at the end of your life, do you think you’ll look back and think, “I’m sure glad I worked so much!” Probably not. In fact, it’s a known fact that the elderly in their last days talk about the regrets they have, and one of those big regrets is usually not taking the time to enjoy life, have fun, and be present with the ones they loved.


We each have about 27,000 days on this earth, give or take. If you consider that a third of those days are reserved for sleeping, and another large percentage makes up your early childhood years which no one can remember, what you’re left with isn’t much!


As the great philosophers have said, realizing how short life is, reminds us to live fully and live presently in the moment! Knowing your time isn’t endless is what makes us value that time so very much. And when you value something, you’re reluctant to waste it. 


There are lots of ways to minimize wasted time from the time that each of us has. Off the top of your head, what things can you think of that waste of your time? Watching TV? Staying in a dead-end job that doesn’t fulfill you? Here are some other common ways that you reduce the enjoyment of the time you have:

  • Allowing yourself to become surrounded by negative people who suck the happiness right out of you. It pays to make the decision to show these people the door. When all of that negative energy isn’t taking up space around you, you have the space to let in so much positive energy!
  • Complaining about things you have no control over. There are things you can control, and many, many situations that you can’t control. Take control of what you can to make your life better, but stop complaining and worrying about those things you simply can’t control. 
  • Being afraid to ask for help when you need it will increase those feelings of isolation and aloneness. There is no shame in asking for help, and when you do, you allow someone else the amazing feeling of giving that help. 
  • Don’t let anyone other than you dictate how you live your life. These people who offer friendly (or not so friendly) “advice” are usually feeling pretty bad about their own situation. 
  • Chasing money, or happiness of the moment, rather than long-term happiness and the true meaning of life. Money is simply a conduit to those experiences that fulfill you and fill you with joy. Use it for it’s intended purpose, but don’t chase it just to have more of it.

Generating Ideas As A Process

So, do you want to come up with some really great, game changing ideas? Well, then you better be ready to put in some time and effort. Nothing worthwhile comes without some labor, and a great idea is no different. While most people think of creativity as sort of an instantaneous thing, nothing could be further from the truth. You see, idea generation is a process. You have to practice at having ideas in order to develop the facility to get to the good ideas. In a way, it’s coming up with good ideas is like learning to throw a fifty yard pass or hit a two hundred yard tee shot. Once you learn the techniques involved and get into a daily habit of using them, you will begin to become an idea assembly line.

One of the first things you have to learn is to always be open and self-confident. You need to be open because of all the influences and other ideas you can pick up simply from expanding your horizons a bit and seeing how the other half lives. You need to be self-confident because you will never get anywhere if you are ill at ease and unsure of yourself. How will you promote your great idea if you don’t think you’re great as well?

It’s also helpful if your pick a certain time each day to generate ideas. It doesn’t matter what part of the day you choose, just so you’re consistent. Keep in mind, that several studies have shown that people tend to be more creative when their tired. This occurs because tiredness tends to turn off the parts of the brain that control attention and mental focus. This results in thought processes that are a bit fuzzy and unfocused. When your thinking is slightly off kilter, you are more likely to make connections between things that you would not connect when well rested. Very often, these odd, disparate connections are the ones that result in game changing ideas.

On a similar subject, try to ideate when you’re taking a shower. When you shower, your brain goes into auto-pilot mode. You really don’t have to think about washing yourself because you do it all the time. This means that, once again, the parts of the brain that control attention and mental focus take a break. You enter into a sort of semi-meditative state that allows you to connect different concepts together in new ways. The result can be you shouting “Eureka!”, just don’t slip on the soap.