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Local author talks about Living in Balance

Deep in the heart of her home sits Connie Harris' office. Bookshelves line the walls behind a neatly organized desk where a computer hums away. Several golden objects shine in the center of the room reflecting a recent trip to China. Harris settles into a chair near a large window overlooking an expanse of central Oregon countryside.
   Ever so often a humming bird flits past the window as she begins to describe the circumstances leading up to a third book writing project. It's a project called Living in Balance, an early version of which will be presented this month in a one day seminar at the local college center.
   "I'm doing this class mainly because living in balance has been a lifelong project for me," she said. "A lot of it comes out of my text book Hired, The Job Hunting Career Planning Guide. I anticipate writing another book called Living in Balance which will be available in bookstores. I'm calling it `A Sharing of Thoughts and Ways' because it reflects a collection my own as well as other people's ideas on the subject."
   Harris reflected on the process leading up to the second edition of the book Hired. The struggle to complete the project subsequently led to the concepts outlined in Living in Balance.
   People tend to be successful around those subjects which they are most committed to. For Harris that has to do with guiding people toward the discovery of personal strengths which can be capitalized on to become more successful _ success found not only in the work environment, but in the personal, social and financial realms as well.
   Much of the work Harris has focused on over the last two decades, stems from a moment when life was undergoing some stressful changes. At that time she was inspired to reach into an inner core of strength which she didn't necessarily know she possessed.
   Like many people confronted with life-changing situations, Harris took an inventory of her life at that time which caused her to re-evaluate the direction she was going. As part of this process she wrote out a list of things to be to accomplished in the form of `I am' statements.
   This list later became goals and affirmations for her life, and a significantly powerful tool for making those changes happen. "I just totally believe in affirmations and how powerful they can be in a person's life," she said.
   Within one year, many of the goals had come to pass or were visible on the near horizon, including a dramatic career change, a college education and world travel.
   As the years passed the changes in her life seemed quite dramatic and appeared to stem from that original change of mind which led to a significantly better way life.
   Harris explained that the path her life has taken included several years in accounting, a professional change to the field of personnel management, several years as a college level instructor at COCC in Bend, and more recently as a writer and lecturer.
   The discovery that the kind of improvements Harris was experiencing could be shared with others compelled her to become a teacher and writer.
   The Living In Balance workshop is geared toward helping people discover and improve themselves, no matter what their walk of life. The primary tool for students is a detailed manual which Harris has put together for this class.
   "This class is aimed at anyone who wants to find balance in their life," she explained. "I think the four zones I have developed is a good way of looking at things. In our personal life if we are not physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally balanced we have difficulty making positive changes."
   The four zones outlined in the course are Personal, Social, Professional and Financial. Students will focus on each aspect during the six hourlong class using the manual as a guide. Each segment offers students a comprehensive selection of tools for self-evaluation with the primary focus being career enhancement.
   Overall, Living in Balance is the perfect class for anyone thinking of changing jobs. It is aimed at those interested in increasing their capacity for living and working effectively in an ever more complex world. It's ideal for anyone currently seeking employment or simply as a way of augmenting an existing self-improvement program.
   "The elements of this class have helped me get focused and get started on what I never considered I would do, which was write another book," Harris explained.
   Living in Balance will be offered at the Central Oregon Community College in Prineville on Saturday, Oct. 13. Cost is $23 (senior cost $18). Drop by the college center at 413 NW Third St. or call 447-4418 to register.