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Columnist, Sheila Moss, is humor writer from  Tennessee. She writes  a weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny things that happen to everyone.

   She has written for  the Daily News of Kingsport,   Griffin Journal, Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books.  Her articles have appeared in numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.

    She is a former board member and past  Editor of  the, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for columnists. She is the Web Editor of Southern  and  a founder of the Southern Humorists writers' organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of

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I was reading a magazine in a clinic the other day and noticed some suggestions for self-improvement. While these suggestions were good, as far as they went, they just didnít seem to quite cover all the alternatives for me.

Eat light and read something inspirational. Why not read something light, like a Dilbert cartoon, and eat something inspirational like a granola bar?

Greet others in a positive way. Could this just be a polite way of saying "Brush your teeth and use mouthwash?"

Be organized and make a to-do list. If it is worth doing, I somehow feel I should just do it instead of spending my time making lists.

Change your attitude. Coffee helps a lot. In the mornings the dog had better not get between the coffeepot and me, or I may growl louder than he does.

Recapture past successes. Does this mean I can potty train my grandchild since I successfully showed kitty the litter box?

Count your blessings. If you canít think of any good ones, is it okay to count troubles? Or maybe I could just count sheep and go back to sleep?

Get advice from others. If anyone has trouble with this one, my mother-in-law would be glad to help.

Think of something you would like to stop doing. I just have a feeling that quitting my job is not an option here.

Be creative. But not while driving in rush hour traffic! There are times to be creative and times to conform.

Play music. Unless you work in the cubicle next to me, in which case you may keep your MP3 file to yourself.

Exercise. I suppose watching an aerobic video does not count, regardless of how much it wears me out.

Write down negative thoughts and then tear up the paper. Well, there goes next weekís column!

Visualize yourself the way you want to be. Youíll still be old and fat; you just wonít have to admit it to yourself.

Donít give up. Yes, if you sit in traffic long enough, eventually youíll get home - unless you run out of gas first, that is.

Reward yourself for saving money by getting something you really want. But what I really want is to spend the money instead of saving it.

Plan a vacation to have something to look forward to. Looking forward to 5 p.m. is good enough for me.

Just as I suspected, itís totally hopeless. But think of the money Iíve saved by staying just the way I am. Maybe I could use it on something I really need, like more self-improvement magazines.

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss

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