Hello New Year! Meet Hyper Writer, LLC

I’ve been thinking about freelancing part-time for a long time and after completing a class recently at The Decatur-Morgan County Entrepreneur Center last Fall, I decided to strike out on a new venture in 2016.

So with that, I created Hyper Writer, LLC where I will be completing freelance documentation projects. I want to convey that documentation can be exciting and interesting and not just something that gathers dust on a shelf! I also want to share my love of writing and all the energy that can be focused on helping users understand software applications either through web or mobile interaction.

Software is changing and we need someone to manage the information so everyone can enjoy learning.

As for the hyper writer herself, I have over 16 years of experience writing software documentation for individuals, recruiters and companies large and small. You can contact me at stef.whitlow@gmail.com or click my contact link on this site for more information.

I will be transitioning this site and creating http://www.hyperwriter.net with a lot more bells, whistles and the latest documentation, please stay tuned for updates coming and moving soon!

Hyper Writer is always moving:

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High Five – Celebrating Positive Focus

“We are not going to focus on what we can’t do; rather, we are going to celebrate what we can do!”

This quote is the mantra of our yoga class and it sums up the focus of what this month has been – a celebration of what is possible.


“We are not going to focus on what we can’t do; rather, we are going to celebrate what we can do!”

It’s been 30 days and I’ve written every day about some aspect of the positive attitude – an attitude that can be attained by giving, being happy, laughing, and helping others.

I’ve touched on aspects of positive psychology with coping skills, resilience, and positive thought.

A few posts dealt with mindfulness, personal journeys, relationships and perception.

In this month, I had some celebrations (my wedding anniversary), personal losses (a layoff) and remembered again the national losses of 9/11.

I do feel as though I have come a long way in 30 days and I do believe it takes about this long to form a habit.

The best picture of the month was attached to my post on Encouragement. My favorite post had to be the one about doing the impossible (Thanks, Walt Disney for the quote!). I put my focus on what I could do and I can now definitely be positive.

High Five – Resilience

Thomas Jefferson stated “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

How true!


“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

Several years ago, just as the economy was spiraling, I went through a huge downsizing. I was completely broken up by this, even though I was not one of the ones being let go, but to see how people handled it was amazing. Some were upset and crying. Some were very angry. But some continued to laugh, joke and hug everyone as they packed their desks and headed out. They didn’t miss a step. Some of us had lunch from time to time over the next few years and those people who smiled in the face of the unexpected did very well. Those who didn’t seemed to take longer to find positions, still remained unhappy and angry at the company for letting them go.

The ones who accepted the situation and moved on to their next big adventure were the resilient ones. Resilience is the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. Being resilient helps you bounce back after surgery, illness, loss or anything else life can through at you.

A post on Healthgram details some ways to become more resilient, but I’m betting you’re already doing them.

If you’re still not sure how resilient you are, give this quiz from Psychology.about.com a try and see how what your results are.


Resilient people are positive people. Or maybe vice versa. Either way, you come out of a bad situation positive, and that’s the right mental attitude.

High Five – Never Give Up!

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”


“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

Mr. Edison’s quote reminds me of a time in my early life when I wanted to be a Pharmacist. I loved the idea of helping people feel better and the fact that I could live and work anywhere – but my way to success was blocked by an impenetrable brick wall made up of chemistry, statistics and physics. I collided with Math. At that point, I took my bruised ego and changed my major to Business which would lead me to Human Resource Management and play to my desire to work with people. In the Business classes I encountered were – wait for it – economics, calculus and accounting. There was no shortage wanting to give up here, at one point during a calculus exam, I looked at the test and realized I was never going to pass this class.

In that moment, though, I made a decision – not to be upset, not to be defeated, not be hurt – but to play to my strengths: writing, research, process and project management. I wrote my name on the test and handed it to the professor and said, “Thank you. I’m done.” I left that class for the last time and marched to the English department to change my major. My final attempt to find a place to succeed paid off; I obtained my Bachelor’s degree in English.

Along the way, I found a new passion – technical writing. I know it sounds weird to have a passion for writing technical manuals and online help but it allowed me to develop processes, manage projects and work with people to help them understand the most difficult concepts. And though I will probably never understand math, the position has allowed me to work with those brilliant people who do understand it – engineers, software developers and analysts.

With this quote, Thomas Edison encourages us to turn a negative – giving up – into a positive – be resilient and try just one more time to succeed.

High Five – Make a New Path!

“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

I admit it, I have a background in English and I have a weakness for verse. But when I re-read this passage from Robert Frost, I thought it fell right into the positive category. Why? Because making and owning a decision gives us control and that control allows us confidence to go forth and make more decisions, even to divert from our current career path. As I’ve stated before, having control can lead to a more positive life.


“I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.”

According to Alison Doyle, Job Search Expert on aboutcareers.com, “Today, the average person changes jobs ten to fifteen times (with an average of 11 job changes) during his or her career, which means a good amount of time is spent changing employment. Job searching and networking, along with staying on top of the job market, has become an integral part of everyday work life, rather than something you do once or twice during your career.”

This could mean you change jobs for better pay, hours, more work-life balance, a chance to expand your skillset or you change careers to develop your skills in a different area. Maybe you remain at the same company and grow in your current job – team lead, supervisor, manager or encourage those in power to help you create a new position. If job changes are a constant, why tread down the same old path? No sighing involved, make a decision to take the less traveled road and make all the difference for yourself.

High Five – Just Be

“Wherever you go, there you are.”

I know you’re wondering how this could be a positive quote. But think about it. You take you and your talents with wherever you go. If you change jobs, houses, cities, states or countries, you are there. With that in mind, the you that you travel with had better be positive.


“Wherever you go, there you are!”

My point in using this quote for today is to bring attention to the fact that I know a lot of people are dealing with transitions in the job market lately. They have to determine whether they should move or stay where they are and stick it out. It’s true that only the individual can decide if that move is worthwhile. Leaving friends and family and, well, roots, is difficult but being laid off or having the job move away from you may call for tough decisions to be made.

In his book, Cracking the Hidden Job Market, Donald Asher writes, “Look around you. Do you see the future or the past? And don’t whine to me about your house. If you’re upside down in it, give it back to the bank. You’ll be a lot better off working in a career-enhancing role in a new locale. If you can’t sell it, fill it up with relatives or rent it out. Don’t hang on to a declining area until you’re flat, busted broke.” And he continues with, “Do something good and move away from bad times if that’s what it takes.”

The advice may seem a bit harsh but the sentiment is that you can make a positive change by doing something that may be very difficult. I’ve had friends who have moved – one completely uprooting within two weeks of getting her job – to new cities for new positions and new lives and both are thriving now. And I’ve met several people who sometimes live three hours from work but commute a few days a week, work remotely or have an apartment in the area. Keep in mind, taking your talents on the road or moving to another city entirely may be painful and a bit scary at the outset but in the end may be the most positive decision you will ever make.

High Five – Choose a Great Attitude

“The choice to have a great attitude is something nobody or no circumstance can take from you”

Choice implies control and you have the choice whether to be positive or negative. It is so incredibly easy to say: “I hate this job!” or “If I had this then I could do that.” Or “There are no opportunities nor support here!” I’ve said it, done it, been it and swam in it and I have the t-shirt to prove it.

Last year all that negativity took its toll on me and I made a huge change in my life. After 5 years of living in four separate cities, in three different houses and changing jobs, I had given up exercising and eating well (always the first to go, am I right?). So the pounds added up, days were struggled through and over-caffeinated fatigue was the norm. I made a decision; I would lose weight, start eating well, and run a 5k race – all before my next birthday which at the time would have been 6 weeks away. With that goal, I learned to cook and I slapped the Couch-to-5K app on my iPhone. Sugar and caffeine were the first casualties, processed foods were next and the challenge of drinking battleship-sinking amounts of water was accepted. My mantra was: There are some things I can control and some things I can’t – I can control my attitude and how well I treat myself.


“The choice to have a great attitude is something nobody or no circumstance can take from you”

Did the mantra about control lead to a more positive attitude? Yes. The pounds came off and I ran my first race in 6 years. My attitude toward meeting my goal was always positive and with each small victory I would chanted, “I can do this. I can control this.” And I did.

In researching my posts, I found an article from a few years ago about using positive thoughts and health affirmations to create better health. Three different studies were funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health and researchers found that being optimistic can positively affect health and well-being.

In short, decide to maintain a great attitude. I know it sounds simple and in some way like a platitude but it’s true, a great attitude cannot be taken from you by another person or circumstance – it is your choice keep it.