Dan Knoepfler, MC, LMHC
Individual, group, and family therapy
Thoughts for the Day
Links to the archives of previous months are at the bottom of the page.

In the work I do, one of the most rewarding aspects is the people factor.  Many of the other professional I collaborate with make the job much more rewarding and fun.   One of these people is feeling kind of burnt out at the moment. While I will be sad if she transfers to another position within her workplace, I believe that self-care is primary and people need to take care of themselves.

As we wait for another round of snow, it's both annoying and exciting.  The kid in me is excited, because when Seattle is blanketed in snow it's BEAUTIFUL.   However, Seattle still remains fairly unprepared for snow when it comes to transportation.   We're a major metro area that gets paralyzed over an inch or two of snow, and they are predicting up to 8 inches between  today, tonight, and tomorrow.

One of my associates completed her licensing process recently and we had a party for her today.  It was fun because in spite of the cold, we dragged out the grill and had fresh grilled burgers and hot dogs.   I love celebrating people accomplishing things.   

Back to work today.   Letting the dust settle after the snow and ice made sense though.

I kind of  wish I cared more about the Superbowl.  But I don't.   I mean football is entertaining, but I didn't really care that much about either team this year.   

I watched a few episodes of "Botched" yesterday.  It's interesting to watch these doctors correct problematic plastic surgery results.   Some seem like they could've been predicted, others were bad luck.  The more predictable ones were people who went for extreme results and found a doctor willing to do it.  The other people who have problems seem to be the ones who have surgery after surgery.   They don't seem to want to stop once they start.  And they don't understand or care that every time they have surgery they are rolling the dice with their health.   The bottom line is these guys who do these corrective surgeries are experts and are very careful about what they are doing.   And most importantly, they are willing to say "no" to people when it doesn't make sense medically. 

The forecast is for snow in Seattle this week.   Will it happen?   Don't hold your breath. It did snow tonight, and is supposed to snow more in the early morning hours until about 11a.m.   I'll be watching the morning news to see whether I'll be working.

I decided to be proactive and I am going to get my taxes done.   I am making a good dent in them today.    I am not planning paying until April 15th, but at least I will know what I owe.

I am retiring my favorite couch.  Apparently I am allergic to dust mites, and I shouldn't have furniture with cloth upholstery.   Time to get a new couch.  Yay!

My allergies are acting up.   I am trying to figure out what it is.   i just bought air filters for home and work.  I hope it will help.

Ever have a friend who is regularly  on TV?   I have a childhood friend who dropped out of the UW and went to LA to be a star.   He isn't a huge star, but he makes a living and supports his family doing this.   Very cool.   I just saw him on TV as a guest star, and it made me think of him.

We made a commitment to eat better at work.  One of my contributions to this was to buy a real fridge for the office, so that we can bring food from home to eat.   It was delivered yesterday.   Let's see how much it gets used.  I know it will.

One of my associates just became fully licensed.   I am so proud of her.  The perseverance and hard work have paid off.  

What is your favorite guilty pleasure when it comes to food?  Mine would be apple fritters.  Gooey, sweet and fried.  They are a true guilty pleasure.   

The shutdown is over for now.  At least for the next three weeks or so.   Thank Goodness.  Now is the time to negotiate a longer-term solution, so we don't end up going through what just happened again.

Today was really the first day that was not fun to drive around Seattle for me, since the viaduct closed.  Apparently the Stanford Track Team's bus caught on fire at a key place on I-5.  The good news is that no one was hurt.  The bad news was that getting from the south end (around the airport) into Seattle proper was ugly for hours.   I didn't get home until 7p.m.

We had polygraph day at my office on Thursday (today).   Normally it is hectic and people are stressed.  However, it was actually a day that was mellow and smooth sailing.

I am fundraising for King County Sexual Assault Resource Center again.   It's been slow going so far.   If you are inclined to help, please feel free to go to my fundraising page for them and give.

Tuesday is generally a mellow day at work.  No groups occur, and I don't tend to schedule people back to back.   I love my Tuesdays.

Three years ago today I was at Paisley Park seeing two of Prince's last shows.  They will be something I never forget.  Hanging out in Chanhassen, Minnesota in the bitter cold.   WoW!   But once inside Paisley Park it was warm and welcoming.  Bootlegs of both shows exist, and someone sent me a copy of both shows.  I feel blessed to be able to listen to these shows and relive those moments.

I missed the blood wolf moon.  I went to look too late in the night.   Ugh.   I am disappointed.

Turns out I did get paid for December as a federal contractor.  In fact I was paid today.   I swear I haven't sighed such a big sigh of relief as I did when I saw the direct deposit show up.

Today we had a WATSA monthly meeting.  The topic was about redacting certain information in evaluations so that it doesn't provide unnecessary information that may become part of a court record and be available to the public.  It's disappointing that Washington State does not view these reports as health care records and protect them accordingly.  It was a helpful discussion to have today.

Today I was supposed to have carpal tunnel hand surgery.  I had to bump it back to late February.   Hopefully it will go smoothly then.

I wonder if we'll have snow this year.  It's not looking like it.   I like at least one good snowfall during the winter.

However, as much as I wish I was in Hawaii, given the partial government shutdown, it makes me nervous about TSA and the prospect that she could get stuck in long lines to get through security to fly home.   She does have plenty of time before having to worry about it though.

Sometimes I don't like Facebook because it makes me envious.  My mom went to Hawaii for a month.  Although she isn't posting pictures much from there, when I do see them, it makes we want to be on a beach reading a book.

Cutting corners - how do you decide when it makes sense vs. when it isn't worth the risk.   I am thinking the familiarity with the task is a big part of it.   It's sometimes tough to decide whether corner cutting is a brilliant plan to save time, or creating unnecessary risk.

The first day without the viaduct.    I always thought of the viaduct as my place with a million dollar view.    Time well tell whether trading the viaduct of a more expanded waterfront will be worth it.  

This week there was teamwork between probation and me in working with a difficult situation with a client.   Things go so much better when there is a team working together.   I am so pleased with the outcome.

Today was an unusual day.   I "lost" my wallet.   It discombobulated me.  When you don't have your license, a debit or credit card, or cash on you, it makes life difficult.    When I got home, it was in a pocket of a pair of pants I wore for about 5 minutes before changing into something else.    Ugh!  At least I didnt have to cancel and replace everything.

As the government shutdown continues I am starting to wonder whether I will be directly impacted soon.  I contract with a part of the federal government that isn't funded at the moment.  In the next 5-10 days they will run out of money.   I am assuming we will be expected to continue to provide contracted services with the understanding that we will be paid once the government reopens.  But who knows.

Ever get lazy and have it come back on you?   I was too lazy to take out the garbage one night.  Waking up to stinky garbage that went really bad overnight was a reminder not to do that again!   When natural consequences are connected to the previous action they tend to be more powerful.   

Back to work....    Having a week off was nice.  I didn't totally unplug, but I did to a much greater degree than normal.  Unplugging is under-rated.

Ironically, several days before my birthday I tried a different new restaurant and ended up with food poisoning.  Things settled down by my birthday, and I tried somewhere else new and was rewarded.  When one is punished for taking a risk (through a negative outcome) one might say it is crazy or foolish to take another risk.  However, on my birthday it wasn't as much of a risk because I read a lot of reviews first, whereas when I got food poisoning I didn't read any reviews first.  Taking a risk doesn't require going into something totally uninformed.  In fact trying new things after doing a little research is actually a wise decision.

For my birthday I tried a totally new restaurant to celebrate.   I can be such a creature of habit.  But I tried something new.    Oh my goodness.    I had the best meal.   Balancing risk/rewards can be tough.  Do I want to celebrate my birthday with a meal from somewhere new that ends up being terrible?   Is it a celebration if you do something totally safe (going to the same old restaurant time after time)?  Thursday's risk was worth it.

As the partial government shutdown continues, it makes me wonder.   What is so important that it is worth throwing down the gauntlet to achieve?  I am not a fan of ultimatums unless there are good reasons and a willingness to follow through.   Especially because there is  almost always collateral damage that occurs when a government is shut down.  To me it seems like the current issue isn't worth shutting down the government to address.   Of course we all want safe and secure borders.  It appears we disagree when it comes to the way to accomplish this.  But in the meantime keep the government open, and NEGOTIATE.  That is the adult way to handle things.

It's my birthday today.  55.  The double nickels.  The speed limit.  Well maybe not anymore, since you can go up to 70 on the freeways in parts of Washington State.  Where did the time go?

In my 12/31/18 post, I used an Oxford comma.  I have to say that I am a fan of them.  It just doesn't look or sound (in my head) right without using that last comma in a series.  Insignificant yet important things we think about.

Time to get used to a new year.   2019!  One goal for 2019 is to have more fun.