Upcoming Release: Mr. Nice Guy by Buddy Gott

I’m so incredibly excited about this! A very big THANK YOU to my wife and co-publisher, Lisa M. Gott, for the beautiful book cover she designed for Mr. Nice Guy. I love it!

Gott Publishing is excited to announce the publication of Buddy Gott’s debut novel, a romantic comedy, MR. NICE GUY. About the Book: About the Author: Buddy Gott is a writer of many things. A…

Source: Upcoming Release: Mr. Nice Guy by Buddy Gott

The Woman with the Balloons

BalloonsWhy was she holding the balloons? That was the first thing I thought of when I saw her moving toward me in the alley beside my house. Looking back, I wonder why I didn’t wonder about other things, such as why she seemed to be growling as she walked. That should have scared me. That should have made me run. But no, I kept staring at those balloons.

I tried to get a good look at the woman, but it was nearly impossible. Everything she wore was black, including the hood that obscured most of her face. The only things that weren’t black were the balloons. They were bright and were getting brighter and brighter as she moved closer to me.

She began to walk faster and her growls grew louder. I took a step back and tripped, falling to the ground. I tried to get back up but the woman was now there. Hovering mere inches over me.

I looked up to where her face should have been, but there was no face. What was there instead was a bizarre mix of both shadows and fog. The shadows were moving as if they were doing some sort of exotic dance and the small patches of fog mirrored the shadows’ movements.

The growling I’d heard earlier was now much louder than before. I looked again at the woman and suddenly realized that the sounds were not coming from her. They were coming from the balloons she was still holding in her right hand.

I started to rise, but the woman raised her left hand, pointing it at my chest. I suddenly felt like a bomb had gone off within my body. My life had ended in an instant. I knew it. But how could that be? If it was all over, how was I even having those thoughts?

My body was then beneath me, lying motionless on the ground. Whatever I had now become was now drifting upward, but not under my own control. The face of shadows and fog looked at me, then turned to look at the balloons.

The next thing I knew I was inside of one of the balloons. I tried to say something, but it only came out as a growl. Nearly identical growls answered me from all of the other balloons.

Even though we couldn’t speak in human voices, I was able to understand them and they were able to understand me.

“What is going on? What’s happened to me?” I asked.

“It was your time to die. The woman with the balloons is the Soul Drifter. She collects our souls and places them in these balloons.”

“And then what happens?”

“She will figure out where we go next. Then she releases our balloons. Some of us will float away to heaven. Others’ balloons will pop and those of us in those balloons will plummet down to hell. And then there are others who will be delivered back to live again.”

“What about me? Where am I going?”

But before the other souls could answer me, the woman with the balloons turned to look at me again. This time, the shadows and the fog in her face were completely still. I felt myself drift out of the balloon and instantly turn into mist. Joining the shadows and fog, I danced with them in the way I’d seen them dance before.

Then it all came back to me. I’d been here. Many times. This was my true home.

While most souls are destined for heaven, hell, or reincarnation, there are some of us who continuously travel from place to place and from body to body. It is our destiny to join together with others like us. We individual drifters become the one Soul Drifter, using our shared experiences to help other souls find their way.

While I loved my human life, being back here, this is what makes me feel complete. This is my destiny. I am the woman with the balloons. I am the Soul Drifter.

#BeingBuddy: Letting go of Guilt

I’ve recently come to the conclusion that I’ve spent a huge part of my life feeling guilty about a lot of things that I shouldn’t have felt guilty about.

Many studies have shown that it’s very common for people with anxiety disorders to often feel extreme levels of guilt over things that they shouldn’t be blaming themselves for at all.

Since I have ADHD, I wasn’t too surprised to learn the above. Of course, feeling unnecessary guilt isn’t a problem for just people with anxiety disorders. Very often, extreme guilt comes from fears of how others will think or feel about us. It can come from a multitude of different kinds of issues and insecurities.

While some people do horrible things that they absolutely should feel guilty about, I want to be clear that what I’m talking about today is things that we know we shouldn’t feel guilty or bad about.

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Yikes. Creepy, huh?

For me, my biggest problem with guilt is when I think that I’ve done or said something to someone and I’m afraid it’s going to make them think badly about me. I overthink the situation and play around with it too much in my head. I usually make the situation far worse than it actually is. In my head, I’m feeling guilty about disappointing or angering the person…even before I know whether or not I’ve actually made them feel that way.

I end up feeling horrible and guilty for no reason at all.

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Another thing I’ve done far too often is let unjust criticisms deeply hurt me. Yes, some criticism can be very good to hear. Sometimes we’re doing something incorrectly and we need to learn a better way to do it. That’s fine. I want to hear constructive criticism like that.

However, some people judge us or insult us when we totally don’t deserve it. For me, even when I know in my gut that what they’re saying about me is wrong, I take their words to heart too much and then start to believe what they’re saying about me is true.

I feel guilty because I must be the horrible person that they say I am. I feel guilty because I must not be doing things the way they think I should. Then I feel guilty for not being a stronger person and for not being a smarter person. And I feel guilty for doing everything wrong. For being such a loser.

If I allowed myself to feel this way, then I’d constantly be carrying around all of those unjust guilty feelings.

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You can only do that for so long before you start to break. I broke several times. It was just very recently that I finally realized that things needed to change. If I kept holding on to guilt, if I kept holding on to the fears and insecurities that came with the guilt, then I was going to keep hurting. I was going to keep breaking.

I decided (finally) to allow myself to let go of the guilt. When I feel guilty now, I do what I can to fight it. It’s not easy and I know it will be an ongoing struggle. However, one thing that has helped me a lot is the realization that people are going to think or feel whatever they want to about me. I have no control over that and it’s pointless for me to spend any of my time or energy worrying about it.

What has also helped me is I now realize that my happiness is entirely up to me. When you get right down to it, it’s a choice that each of us has to make for ourselves. We can choose to take the steps we need to be happy, to lead us to where we want to be in our lives. Or we can choose other directions, ones that will make our journeys far more difficult that they need to be.

Life is too short. From now on, I’m going to choose happiness. Every day.

I’m going to let go of the guilt and pain, and I’m going to see where I can go next…

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#BeingBuddy: Self-Discovery With Journaling

Have you ever kept a diary or a journal? I had my first diary when I was around 10 years old. It was the kind that had a very, very, very tiny little lock on the front of it. It looked nearly identical to this one.

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The lock was so cheap that you barely even needed the silly little key that came with it. I used to open the lock by hitting it with my fist in the same way that Fonzie on Happy Days would hit a jukebox to get it to play music. It worked for me (and for The Fonz) every time.

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Being only 10 years old, I didn’t have many exciting things to write about, so I didn’t use it for very long. The next diary that I got came when I was a freshman in high school.

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Okay, not an actual diary, but I did get Ozzy Osbourne’s great Diary Of A Madman album back then. Alright, that certainly wasn’t the best joke I’ve ever told. I admit that it kind of stunk.

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But, seriously…

A year or so later, I started keeping a journal. It was just a spiral notebook, the kind you’d use in school, but it worked out perfectly for me. I’d write down all kinds of random thoughts in there. I actually located that notebook recently and it was fun to read through it. There were several entries about girls I had crushes on, dreams that I had, and insecurities and fears that I had. It was especially interesting to read about the things that I viewed back then as being “the end of the world.” They don’t seem so horrible now, but they sure seemed that way back then.

Looking back on keeping that journal, I know now that it was a very valuable experience for me. Even though I had a lot of friends at that time, I was still a bit of an introvert and I kept a lot of things to myself. Writing in the journal gave me a chance to let out some of the sad and angry things that were buried deep inside of me.

Letting them out always made me feel at least a little bit better.

Like a lot of people do who keep a diary or a journal when they’re a kid, I stopped doing it as I exited my teenage years. Life moved on…

Flash forward to 2016 and I’m keeping a journal again. I started doing it a couple of months ago on a very sporadic basis. There were some things going on in my life that were troubling me and when things got especially bad, I’d sit down and write out my thoughts and feelings.

Just like how journaling helped me work through problems in high school, I found that doing it now in the present was no different. It very much became self-therapy for me and it made me feel better.

But then I decided to take it a little bit further. As I said earlier, I’d been doing the journal entries only occasionally, at times when I was feeling especially low. What if I changed that and started writing in the journal every single day? What if it became about more than just the things that troubled me? What if I went much deeper and wrote about other types of thoughts and feelings that I have?

So, I started writing in the journal each and every day. I made a few rules for myself. One was that it was to be more about what was going on inside of me and not be a chronicle of simple things like me going to the store to pick up donuts. My second rule was that each entry has to be at least 500 words. That way, there’s a much better chance that I’ll always have to really tap into myself to get enough material for 500 words. My last rule was that I write these journal entries first thing every morning.

And you know what? It’s felt great! With doing them in the morning, I’ve been going into each day with a clearer head. If I had woken up with any negative feelings, I faced them and tried to work through them in my journal. If I woke up with nothing but wonderful feelings, my journal entries let me write about those feelings and then embrace them even further.

Each and every one of my journal entries has been a step to self-discovery for me. I truly examine my feelings, my desires, and my dreams. It’s been wonderful.

And you know what? I realize now that maybe those silly little keys that come with those diaries aren’t so silly after all.

Maybe those keys aren’t so much for locking others out, but they’re actually for unlocking the mysteries that lie within us.

Keyhole - the door

#BeingBuddy: Staycations Can Be The Best Vacations

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Vacations are great, aren’t they? We all need to recharge our batteries from time to time and vacations are a perfect way to do that. My wife and I are on vacation right now and it’s been wonderful.

So, where did we go this week? Well, not very far. In fact, we had to drive somewhere yesterday and it was the first time in six days that we even got into our car. We’ve either been staying inside relaxing together or we’ve been going on walks to nearby parks like the one in the above picture.

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Oh, my goodness. What the heck happened to my hair? Well, thankfully, nothing for real. One of the relaxing and downright silly things I’ve done this week is to play with apps that do things like that. I also found a groovy one that made me look 30 years older.

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Rock on, Old Buddy. Rock on!

So, what else have I done this week? Well, Lisa and I both spent a lot of time writing. She’s gotten a lot of work done on her new book and I’ve done a lot of work on mine. Neither of us have put too much pressure on ourselves, though. If we felt like writing, we did. If we didn’t, we didn’t. After all, we’re on vacation! What I think is especially cool is that I bet that part of the reason we were both able to accomplish so much is because of how relaxed we’ve been.

IMG_1419 Even our cat Nikita embraced the spirit of Vacation Week and decided to take it easy most of the days. Alright, come to think of it, she does this every day anyway…but still, I think she has the right idea here.

You know what else we did? Color and draw! Here’s my favorite creation of the week:

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And you know what? It really has been all good. I’d rank this as one of the best vacations I’ve ever had. I have absolutely no problem with people going away on trips for vacations and I often love to do it myself. Traveling can be wonderful. In fact, we’re planning a big getaway next year and I know it will be awesome.

But there’s a lot to be said for just staying at home and having a “staycation.” It’s nice to not have to worry about traveling anywhere and being able to just totally take it easy at home.

I highly, highly recommend it.

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