Coping tools

Sometimes, It’s Good to be Hard on Yourself

by Bill Brenner April 21, 2016 Dealing with life

Last week, I vented frustration on Facebook after a particularly frustrating day. I was angrier than I had been in a long time. Mood music: By the next morning, the bad feelings had dulled and I had second thoughts about venting my anger the way I did. So I put this on my timeline: Yesterday I was having a bad-attitude kind of day and I let it bleed onto Facebook. I try to never do…  [Read More]

With Burnout Comes Wisdom (If You Survive)

by Bill Brenner November 5, 2015 Work-life balance

I’ve devoted several posts to combatting career burnout, particularly in the information security industry. But something recently occurred to me: Burnout can be a good thing, but only if you survive. Mood music: The thought came to me after talking to a fellow industry veteran and work colleague. We’ve seen friends younger than us either setting themselves up for the fall or crashing to Earth after burning to a crisp. My friend knows burnout. So do I. We’ve…  [Read More]

5 Realizations and Defenses from the Family Business

by Bill Brenner November 2, 2015 Dealing with life

Big pressures aside, I’ve learned much while cleaning up and selling off the old family business and managing trusts Dad left in my hands. Mood music: Until I took on this family business stuff, I’d never had to deal with lawyers or real estate people at this magnitude. I had certainly never managed this kind of money. Here are five realizations — and five defenses — that have saved me from implosion. 5 Realizations Lawyers are the best and worst of humanity….  [Read More]

Coming Soon: The OCD Diaries Book Series

by Bill Brenner October 14, 2015 Adventures in writing

For years, people have told me to write a book based on this blog. And for years I’ve resisted because life was busy enough between work, family and writing for three blogs. But after some brainstorming with Erin last weekend, the decision is made: I’m diving in. The time is right. Mood music: In 2016 I’ll still write fresh posts here, but my main focus as far as The OCD Diaries goes will be on book writing. Not…  [Read More]

Out of Facebook F**ks to Give

by Bill Brenner October 9, 2015 Communication skills for the crazy

When I look at some of the posts I wrote just a few years ago, I realize how much my outlook on a lot of things has changed, especially when it comes to Facebook. My opinions have evolved through my experiences since writing those posts. People who read those posts should see that a writer’s views can evolve and mature — or devolve. Mood music: “Me and My Facebook Unfriend Finder“ This post describes how…  [Read More]

Tales from the Womb

by Bill Brenner September 21, 2015 Gratitude

For a few years in the late 1980s and early 1990s, it was one of my favorite places on Earth. My late friend Sean Marley built the room in his basement, a couple doors down from my house. If we weren’t in my basement, we were his. Mood music: Sean called it The Womb because he likened the peace one felt in there to being back in the womb. It was a fairly accurate description….  [Read More]

Dealing with 9/11: Then and Now

by Bill Brenner September 11, 2015 The stormy past

I wasn’t in New York City the day the Twin Towers fell. I know many people who were, and they have the scars and stories to show for it. My 9/11 experiences are not heroic or even all that dramatic. But they are case studies in personal growth. It was a terrible day, but I’d like to think we all learned something positive about how to live in the aftermath. This is simply my personal measuring…  [Read More]

Surviving the Persistence of Time

by Bill Brenner August 26, 2015 Dealing with life

Here I am at another birthday. I’ve been telling people I couldn’t care less this year. It’s been a rough summer with too much upheaval, too much grief. There’s not much to celebrate. But the truth is, I’m grateful to be here. Mood music: That I’m now in my mid 40s is surprising — in my mind, at least. When I was sick with Crohn’s Disease as a kid, I lost a lot of blood…  [Read More]

The Boy Inside the Man: An Inspirational Story

by Bill Brenner August 25, 2015 Adventures in writing

This blog is my personal tale. That it helps some people because they can relate to it was an unexpected bonus that I try to live up to. As part of that I will share personal tales from other people that have taught me a lot. The latest example is “Being ‘Whole’ Isn’t My Goal” by Paul Nobles. I don’t know Nobles personally, but the man captures things I relate to. He writes of things…  [Read More]

A 6-Step Grief Survival Guide

by Bill Brenner July 21, 2015 Dealing with life

Having lost more friends and family than I care to count, I’ve tried writing posts over the years that make sense of grief. Or, at least, how I’ve worked through mine. Mood music: With the loss of my aunt and my father in the past month, I find myself thinking about those older writings. So I assembled this list. Its first purpose is to help me keep my perspective and regain my equilibrium. The second purpose,…  [Read More]