Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Live your truth . . . .

How different would your life be if you shaped it based on who you really are and what defines you?  What if you left the expectations of others behind, and began living your life the way you feel is most worthwhile? When we allow others to define us, accepting assigned roles and labels, rather than living our life authentically, it drains us of our life energy. When we accept the labels that others so willingly bestow upon us, we end up repeating the wrong message. The truth is.....labels ignore who you really are! Becoming real is a point in your life when you stop paying attention to those labels, and start listening to your heart. Your heart has been speaking to you for years! The process of 'becoming real' begins when you decide to listen; when you learn to accept and appreciate what it is that makes you different from all the others. As you learn to trust the wisdom of your heart and begin to make creative choices based on what you know is right for you, it is at this point, we grow into ourselves.

Stop burning daylight! Do yourself a favor and get in touch with what you know in your heart really matters.  When you can begin to project who you really are, (and leave the assigned roles & labels behind), you begin making a wonderful contribution to those around you. You put forth the best of who you are!  

Other people's opinion of you 
does not have to become your reality.  
-Les Brown

Photo via Google Images

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Photo by Micah A. Ponce via flickr

Monday, March 28, 2011

So worth it! . . . .

Have a great HILARIOUS Monday!

Friday, March 25, 2011

100 years . . . .

"The future has a way of arriving unannounced."
-George Will

Happy Friday!
Make the most of your weekend!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Own It! . . . .

What is your challenge today? Is there something that you struggle with, and find yourself questioning whether or not you can get through it? There is a very powerful 2-word phrase that never fails to give me the additional energy that I need to get through my challenge. That phrase is OWN IT! When you own something, you take responsibility for it. You realize that no one is going to do it for you! When you make it your responsibility, it automatically maximizes your abilities, and you gain more power. For example......I don't like to run, but whether I like it or not, my physical trainer asks that I run at the beginning of my workout to boost my metabolism, which insures that I am working at my maximum potential for the remainder of the session. There are days when I just don't think I'll get through it. When he sees me struggling, he very sternly and purposely says "OWN IT", and when he does, I am immediately met with the additional energy that I didn't know I had. There is a feeling that kicks in to gear, and there is no question that it provides me with the mental & physical power that I need to finish. We have so much more in us than we realize! We just need to find that inner strength. For me, that powerful 2-word phrase gives me that strength every time. 

Take responsibility for your challenge today. If you're struggling to get through your workout......OWN IT! If you're staring a pile of paperwork......OWN IT! Show it that you mean business. You may be surprised at the additional strength, power & energy that presents itself.

If we can't take responsibility for it,
we'll always be its victim.
-Richard Bach

Photo via Google Images

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

We Teach People How to Treat Us . . . .

You either teach people to treat you with dignity and respect, or you don't. This means you are partly responsible for the mistreatment that you get at the hands of someone else. You shape others' behavior when you teach them what they can get away with and what they cannot.

If people in your life treat you in an undesirable way, figure out what you are doing to reinforce, elicit or allow that treatment. Identify the payoffs you may be giving someone in response to any negative behavior. For example, when people are aggressive, bossy or controlling --- and then get their way --- you have rewarded them for unacceptable behavior.

Because you are accountable, you can declare the relationship "reopened for negotiation" at any time you choose, and for as long as you choose. Even a pattern of relating that is 30 years old can be redefined. Before you reopen the negotiation, you must commit to do so from a position of strength and power, not fear and self-doubt. The resolve to be treated with dignity and respect must be uncompromising.

The worst thing you could do is make a lot of noise about changing things, only to revert to the old, familiar, destructive patterns. To talk about change and not take action to do it is to teach that person to treat your statements and declarations lightly. You will teach him or her to be patient, confident that you will soon give in. Where your relationship standards are concerned, commit to yourself that, although it may be difficult to effect change, you must not compromise. To compromise in this area is to sell out your most precious commodity: YOU.

We teach people how to treat us. Own, rather than complain about, how people treat you. Learn to renegotiate your relationships to have what you want.

From the book Life Strategies

Monday, March 21, 2011

Are you having fun yet? . . . .

The most fun a baby soul can have
comes from watching.

The most fun a young soul can have
comes from doing.

And the most fun an old soul can have
doesn't come from anything.
Not that old souls aren't still first to the
playground, dance floor or hoedown,
but that they could have fun
anywhere, anytime,
like right here and now.

Photo's #1 and #2 via Nicole Hill Gerulot
Photo #3 via Pinterest

Friday, March 18, 2011

Love your work, work your love . . . .

"You see, there's so much noise in this world and so many people will try and tell you what they think is right for you. Guess what? Only you know what's right for you. And when you figure it out, when you find that you love, the music gets louder, the car drives faster and the whole world suddently feels, right. You've found your place. You love your work and work your love. And the magic you make is going to shake things up. If not, give me a call and I'll pick you up."

-David Brown 
A very cool guy! Read about him here.

Happy Friday!
Have a lovely weekend!

Graphic via Pennywishes

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Just something yummy . . . .

thin mint truffles
It is rare that I post anything other than a little daily dose of encouragement, but if this isn't pure joy, I don't know what is!! I came across this recipe over at Confessions of a Cookbook Queen, and when I saw it, I remembered the box of Thin Mints that I had in the freezer, and thought these looked not only yummy, but pretty. Not to mention that I wanted to do something with those cookies other than sitting down with the whole sleeve and eating them one after another. So I made these for St. Patrick's Day to share with my friends. These little guys are delicious! . . . . I hope my friends think so too!

Thin Mint Truffles

9 oz. box of Thin Mints
4 oz. (1/2 block) cream cheese, softened
Dark chocolate almond bark or dark chocolate candy melts

Crush the Thin Mints very finely. You can do this by placing them in a large Ziploc bag and rolling them with a rolling pin, or use your food processor, which is what I did.

Once they are crushed, pour them in a large bowl and add the cream cheese. You can just mix it up with a wooden spoon, but for best results, use your hands. Work the cream cheese and cookie crumbs together until it's thoroughly combined and the cream cheese is no longer visible.

Roll into 1 inch balls, place on wax paper lined baking sheet, and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

Melt dark chocolate, and using a toothpick, dip truffles completely and twirl to allow the excess to drip off. Place back on lined baking sheet and sprinkle with nonpareils before they begin to set. Refrigerate until firm.

Makes about 24 truffles.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

So many reasons . . . .


Road trips!

It's lighter longer!


Spring is near! 

...and because it's a choice 
you get to make!

Photo credits:
#1, 3, 4 & 5  Pinterest
#6  Pia Ulin via Agent Bauer

Friday, March 11, 2011

The power of forgiveness . . . .

Hate, anger and resentment are destructive, eating away at the heart and soul of the person who carries them. They are absolutely incompatible with your own peace, joy and relaxation. Ugly emotions change who you are and contaminate every relationship you have. They can also take a physical toll on your body, including sleep disturbance, headaches, back spasms, and even heart attacks. Forgiveness sets you free from the bonds of hatred, anger and resentment. The only way to rise above the negatives of a relationship in which you were hurt is to take the moral high ground, and forgive the person who hurt you. Forgiveness is not about another person who has transgressed against you; it is about you. Forgiveness is about doing whatever it takes to preserve the power to create your own emotional state. It is a gift to yourself and it frees you. You don't have to have the other person's cooperation, and they do not have to be sorry or admit the error of their ways. Do it for yourself. You don't have to forgive because they deserve it,  forgive because you don't need it anymore.

Forgiveness is a gift 
you give yourself.

Happy Friday!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Photo of Kate Winslet via Patterson Maker

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Monday, March 7, 2011

Friday, March 4, 2011

This is The Universe . . . .

This is The Universe....

I'm here to ask you a favor.... something I've never done before, 
and it's a really BIG ONE.... 
Please... just be you... today, this week, for the rest of your life... just be YOU. Not that you haven't been, but I know how impatient you sometimes get... I know of how much you want... and I know that you sometimes doubt yourself, life, even the magic that now surrounds you. Well... don't be impatient, ALL THINGS will be YOURS in time... keep hold of your dreams, they're yours to remind you of what's possible...and please, know that you are SO on track and that "WE" are so, so proud of you, just as you are. 

Just be you, because if you only knew of how much this would mean to all whose lives you touch, and for the difference you will make... there is no other "way" you'd want to be.

-Your biggest fan.

Photo via zastavki

Happy Friday!
Have a magical weekend!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Cutting the Cord to Materialism . . . .

Note: this post from David Damron of The Minimalist Path.

Let's start with an exercise.....

Write your response to the up-coming question on a piece of paper in one sentence.

Here is your question:
If you had the opportunity to do one activity for one week without any worry about finances, cost, or other outside commitments, what would you love to do for this week?

So, what did you come up with? Was it travel around your favorite Hawaiian Island? Was it to spend a week at Disney World with your family and friends? Was it take that honeymoon you and your significant other missed out on? Or was it watch television while you munched on chips and salsa for eight hours a day, seven days straight? I doubt it was the last one. However, for some reason, the last response should be answered the most. At least by Americans. In 2008, we watched an average of 5.1 hours/day of television and that doesn't include the 3 hours/month average of internet video watching. For Americans, that is a total of 10.92 weeks/year watching television. If that figure doesn't shock you then I don't know what will. Once television became such a monumental part of our lives, we began being consumed by this sedentary form of life that co-existed with unhealthy and unfit lives. 

In many other parts of the world, being active is living. In Japan, Leo Babauta experienced the countering idea to the lives of western cultures. He found that many Japanese lives revolve around basic physical activities like walking and biking and there isn't a focus on exercise. Those that have not accepted the forms of materialism similar to the addiction in America and beyond live longer and are happier. Though this may be for many reasons, such as financial, I like to believe it is for the health and life reasons that many the world over choose the anti-materialism way.

Health is not the only factor in the fight against materialism. You do not need me to tell you about the financial situation the world is in. The abundance of commercials and other highly influential advertising through our modes of electronic communication have caused personal debt to become just as bloated as our waste lines. In American we spend 5.4% of our income entertaining ourselves. That's $2,700/annually that could be going towards savings, retirement and/or travel. How different would your mindset be if you had $2,700 set aside for a random, spontaneous week vacation? If you think that's a lot, we spend $1,881/annually just on apparel and services. Assuming we just cut those two totals in half, we would have an additional $2,290 to our name. 

The point of reducing our sedentary forms of entertainment is not just to save money and lose a few pounds. It is to save our lives! Just imagine how different your life would be if you spent one more hour with your family daily or a few more hours a week chasing your tour card on the PGA or training for a marathon. When we spend our time doing the things we love, it ends up being more valuable than any half hour sitcom can be.

Remember that question I asked you to answer earlier? Your response was only addressing one week. So, if you chose to spend your gifted week at the Great Barrier Reef finding Nemo, imagine what your life would be life if you took just half of that 10+ hours/week spent in front of the television and spent those additional 5 weeks exploring the entire Great Barrier Reef. Surely, your boss may not let you have that much vacation, but without that television being such a major priority, you could do many of the things you dream of doing, whatever they may be.

Being a minimalist and simplifying your life does not mean you need to eliminate all that you somewhat enjoy. I, to this day, like to watch a handful of hours of television per week. However, if you are able to reduce the quantity of time and money spent on that which you just like and apply both to that which you love, you may be able to live a longer, more pleasureful life.

Try cutting your cord to materialism and start appreciating more of the things you don't just like, but love.

David Damron is the author of PROJECT M-31: Simplify Your Life in 31 Days, and chronicles his journey to a more simplified life at The Minimalist Path.

Photo via Anchor Division

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

You are beautiful already . . . .

"To the people who love you, you are beautiful already. This is not because they're blind to your shortcomings but because they so clearly see your soul. Your shortcomings then dim by comparison. The people who care about you are willing to let you be imperfect and beautiful, too."
-Victoria Moran

Photo by Alexander Benz

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams . . .

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams . . .
Follow your heart


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