News Years Time!

Hello furries!

The year is ended, you’ve accomplished so much this year. Have you reviewed your year and how much you’ve gotten done? Hopefully, following my blog, you’ve done more this year than you even expected! Now, I hope you’ll be able to get even more done in 2019 as we work through the processes of how to get more done!

So let’s set some goals! We need some short-term goals and long term goals for the year, keeping them in line with our life goals we’re working toward. Want to draw more or get more followers this year? Remember, these are SMART goals- Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Decide and write out your goals in that format. Then keep your written goals somewhere you can see them so you can think about them.

Have a much more general goal that’s harder to put in SMART format? I want to make more friends. Well you need to break down the issue with questions that help you make it into something you can work with. How do you make more friends? Meet more people. How do you meet more people? Find things people do that I also like to do in a social setting. How do you find those things? Look it up online. Now let’s say you found something that you want to do in a social setting with others. The SMART format could be Attend X numbers of meetups in 2019. Not bad. Of course you’ll have to learn and adapt more about the way you behave to earn more friends but you need to try.

Want to move out of the house in 2019? Find some relevant goals for that. Pick a place you want to live, increase your income if necessary, plan on how you would actually move your possessions, etc.

There’s a lot of stuff out there to try and work toward. You have a whole year to do it and if you work on it regularly, I believe you have what it takes to reach your goals this coming year! Have any SMART goals already? I’d love to hear them! Use the Contact Wuffles link to the left and let me know. Having trouble figuring out how to break down a goal? I’d be happy to help if you reach out using the same link! I look forward to hearing from you all!

Good luck, fuzzbutts!

Belated Christmas Greetings

Hello fuzzbutts!

Merry Christmas and happy Hanukkah! Hope you had a fun Christmas. I had a fun, very small Christmas with the folks. It was a nice couple of days of good food (still have tasty leftovers from the 24th). Now, I don’t have work until the 2nd so I’m enjoying this vacation to get some work done. I’m listening to books, watching educational videos, and trying to hit some goals.

Speaking of goals, I’m going to post on Saturday about them for the coming new year! For now, think SMART and consider some new years resolutions you want to hit in 2019!

The Responsibility Question

Hi furries!

Had a pretty rough day recently when I found out there weren’t going to be any annual bonuses for anyone for 2018. The company didn’t meet its goals and funding is in bad shape. It’s easy to look around and wonder “Who is responsible for this?” when the real question is “What was I responsible for and is there a way for me to fix it?”

Was there anything I could have done? Maybe. I was already going outside the scope of my job description and then also assisting others in their projects to increase productivity around the lab. There’s times I could have done more but that’s about it now. Would this have added up to millions of dollars shortfall? Well no. I’m pretty great but not THAT great. So maybe there’s nothing I could do on my end to make up for that. Is there a way for me to fix it for them? Well not really that either.

So, after being a little down in the dumps about it, the responsibility question got deeper and I looked for what I am responsible for. I AM responsible for how I feel in my reaction to this news. I could feel down or I could put that energy to something useful. I AM responsible for picking my work. I could feel stuck and cheated or I could put more effort into looking for a new job. I AM responsible for where I work. So many people stay around SoCal expecting to find high-power jobs but if I want to be able to own a home and set down roots, I either have to move to a different state for work or find a second source of income here.

Asking these questions helps me re-align with my goals and come up with new ideas for plans and ways to keep moving ahead in my life. While I consider the options for myself, I want you to review everything and imagine you could take responsibility for some situation you’re in. If you can’t take responsibility for everything, identify what you can be responsible for.

Good luck, furries!

The Furry Image

Hello fuzzbutts!

Stuff keeps making the rounds on Twitter lately so I wanted to take some time to talk about the image of furries.

It’s no secret that people outside the fandom look in on furries and see cringe. I see it too! Furries see it enough that we’re supposedly one of the hardest groups for the media to reach now. A friend of mine who spoke to the media regarding a criminal case in SoCal told me the journalist said furries are harder to get a hold of than violent gang members. Whatever the press hears about is usually negative so they report the negative and the cycle continues.

So a few things to improve the furry image.

Less cringe

First up is being less cringe-y in general. Be more social and encounter more people. Reserve yourself a bit when out in public. Recognize that people will think you’re odd right off the bat but acting insane around people will give them a negative impression. The whole “Who cares what they think?” attitude is pretty big in this fandom but at the same time they’ll complain the media is what makes us look bad. So realize that the meetups and cons aren’t as much of a bubble as you think and that your actions contribute to the outside world’s view of furries as a whole.

Engage

The media! Don’t answer anything weird (asking about zippers on fursuits) but if it’s a decent question then answer it reasonably. Considering things like CSI or MTV portrayed us like some kind of sex cult, it’s not unreasonable to think the media might be genuinely curious if that’s true. Then again, they can’t report that if you don’t actually suggest that! Remember that anyone you talk to is considering you a representative of the fandom so behave in a way that shows the rest of us in the best light. Not just the person you’re speaking to but if it’s on video, you’ll be the representative to anyone who sees the video!

Ostracize

What? Yeah. There’s too many reports lately of certain furries being very involved in the fandom who turn out they have a criminal record or engage in the worst kinds of activities. Don’t want people to think actual animals are a sexual fetish? Banish any furries who engage in it! Good grief! This is the biggest thing in the fandom that bothers me. We’re so concerned about our image but too many will rush to the defense of a popular (or even unpopular) furry who engages in something so heinous! Same with those who engage with those who are below the age of consent! Eeek! Why are they allowed to run around in our circles?! It’s not a massive fandom like comic-con where tends of thousands of people show up at once. Yet they still are allowed to show up to cons and even be volunteers for activities at the cons. No! Stop that! *Baps with newspaper*

So these are just a few things I’ve had rolling around in my head lately as I see Twitter continue to explode on some of the drama lately. If improving the fandom and the image of the fandom is one of your ongoing goals, this should help a bunch!

Good luck and stay safe, fuzzbutts!

Race Review and Muscle Healing!

Hello fuzzbutts!

So I did the Spartan Sprint on Saturday. It was a blast but my conditioning was just not there. A factor in that might be that I sold a pint of blood within 2 weeks of the race. Apparently it takes 6 weeks for the average person to recover that much. On the other hand, I don’t do a ton of very long distance running on hilly areas. This was up dirt trails and steep paths for long distances. I did better on the obstacles than I thought I would but I kept having to take a knee to catch my breath.

Now it’s Wednesday and I’m still feeling a bit of soreness so I started looking up the best ways to recover from muscle soreness and found a few that are easy to do.

Rest

Proper sleep allows your body to heal better. Lack of sleep also results in worse recovery so you need to go to bed on time!

Stretch

Stretching your muscles after a workout improves circulation, allowing the nutrients to flow over your muscles and hasten the healing.

Hydrate

Staying hydrated also works with your circulation, compounding with the stretching to help you heal quicker.

Light Massage

To keep you healing well, massages also improve circulation and reduce tightness in your muscles (like stretching!).

Overall, I’m not very satisfied with my performance and now I want to train more for longer distances over crazier terrain. Maybe look into a water pack because I was dying of thirst the whole time. I’ll probably be doing more long distance running too, taking on some 5ks this coming year and a half marathon too! It’ll be a blast!

Have fun, furries!

The Protective Wall!

Good morning Fuzzbutts!

Alright so a creative friend came and asked me a little bit about commissioners but this is something I’ve heard about before that drives many artists, whether they make fursuits or sketches or whatever, to go batty. If you’re a creative type who has turned your art into your income, listen up! If you’re somebody who likes to purchase art stuff that somebody else has made, listen up! If you’re neither of those, then read this post anyway because I put in the effort!

So you create something and somebody comes to you for a commission. You do what they say and then they have a couple of corrections. You fix those and then there’s other errors they want you to fix. Those are handled and then suddenly the whole thing just still isn’t satisfactory. You’ve spent about twice as much time on this one commission without any increase in your price and they’re still walking around grumbling. Their grumbling hurts you because you really tried to make them happy and put in extra effort. They don’t seem happy either. Next time you open up for commissions, they’re right there with another handful of dollars to have you go through it all over again with them.

There’s something called the 80-20 rule that applies to a lot of stuff. If you’re a creator, 80% of your problems will come from 20% of your customers. That means if you’re spending a bunch of time with one unhappy customer, it’s taking time from customers you enjoy dealing with and most of your issues are coming from a small group rather than the majority! So it’s time to recognize the problem furries and cut them off! Preserve the sanity!

There’s a mindset sometimes that you want to be liked and you appreciate your fans for the fact they think enough of you to give you money for art. You get the money and want to satisfy their request! If there’s something wrong, even though the commissioner didn’t actually tell you the thing that should have been there in the first place, you want to make it right. They’re not very happy with what you made but can’t even explain what you did wrong without requiring you just start over.

Nope! That bad commissioner goes out the window! Next time they show up, you close that door. You give that slot to somebody who will appreciate your efforts.

One thing I think happens with artists when they get repeat bad commissioners is that they’ve already been turned away by other artists. These sour platypuses then waddle their way to you since you’re the only one who puts up with their needs. Don’t enable their behavior by dealing with them and then stressing yourself out!

Commissioners! I’m speaking to you now! If you have a specific thing in mind for your commission, describe it in detail! Have a good ref handy! If you weren’t clear in your description and they show you a beautiful artwork that wasn’t exactly what you wanted, then take it as a lesson to be more clear. Then just enjoy the artwork, even if it’s not exactly what you had in your head. Other times, the art just doesn’t look so good where the artist doesn’t seem to have put as much effort in yours as they did with the other commissions. I’ve experienced that too. Take the art, thank them, and don’t bother with them again. There’s plenty of artists out there who will do your characters justice who will also take your money. Now if there’s something that was in the ref or description that they clearly forgot, feel free to point that out to them (missing a marking on their face, the pose is way off from what you described directly, etc).

Please, regardless what side you fall on, realize the other end of the FurAffinity notes is a person and also loves furry stuff. Artists, do your best and work with your customers but don’t stress yourself out and spend too much time with unpleasant experiences but make sure you complete the work you take on. Commissioners, provide your feedback when something has to be fixed but realize the effort that goes into making artwork and don’t nitpick or change what you asked for. Together, the furries will maintain their fun, artsy economy and we’ll all get to appreciate what gets posted!

Have fun, fuzzbutts!

Knocking out those negative voices!

Rawr! Intense wuff!

So yesterday morning I looked up the obstacle course and some of it looks intense! Of course, my brain did what many brains might do- tell me I couldn’t do it. I see something that looks awkward or I haven’t done before and a powerful voice in my head says “You should quit. That’s too much. You aren’t ready for that.” And then builds onto my anxiety. Before I began to imitate the cowardly lion, I caught myself and realized my brain was trying to push me right back into my safe bubble. It’s an obstacle course full of people I don’t know! So what if I end up looking silly on some of them and doing the penalty burpees? As difficult as some of it looks, there’s no realistic reason to expect to get hurt!

Even when you think rationally, your mind can still build those feelings of anxiety or other issues. One way of dealing with it is channeling that energy. Being anxious just keeps you stressed so turn that energy into something else! By imagining the negative voice as a separate entity from myself, I can see it as something to be irritated by, converting that anxiety into annoyance which is something I can work with.

You’re not prepared enough.” POW! I’m going to lay out what I’m going to wear. “You don’t know how to do that! You’ve never done that before!” KABOOM! I’m going to try! Not like there’s a bunch of places with a hanging rope I can practice climbing. I can at least watch videos to learn what the technique is supposed to be so I can try when I get there. “You’re not strong enough.” BIFF! I’m way stronger than I was and I’ve never tested myself before so what do you know about what I can and can’t do? “It’s going to go badly.” WHACK! It won’t but even if it does, I can always sign up for another one and train more with a better idea of what I need to work on!

So yeah. My own technique is to make the negative voice something separate you can fight against. Channel the energy into something you can use like developing plans or working harder toward your goals!

Good luck, fuzzbutts!