#126 Make a New Friend

It may be that as we grow into a new interest, we discover that surrounding ourselves with people who also like those things may inspire us to go further than we knew we could.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#126

Make a New Friend

Life is just better when we are sharing ourselves with other people who are like-minded. Some of us who are more introverted may hesitate to reach out in ways that allow us to make new friendships. Others, are challenged to keep up with the friendships that already exist. And for some of us, the friendships we have may no  longer be meeting our changing personalities or needs.

Like-minded Peeps

Friendships are built upon like-mindedness; shared interests, values, and inspirations. When our daily activities or the things we value change, so may our friendships need to change. It may be that as we grow into a new interest, we discover that surrounding ourselves with people who also like those things may inspire us to go further than we knew we could.

Breaking Barriers

Sometimes we realize we need to make new friends yet we are limited in our opportunities to meet new people. This is when we need to break barriers of comfort and habit. This is when it becomes necessary to branch out and create opportunities to be introduced to people like us via clubs, groups, volunteering, etc.

First Move

If you know that new friendships will enrich your life, be brave enough to make the first move… ask someone to lunch with you or suggest a get together. Initiate conversation or invite them over for an evening that encompasses that ‘thing’ you share. Take the initiative in opening up; be vulnerable!

It’s really not possible to have ‘too many’ friends – people that really matter to you and that share common ideologies. If you’ve notice that the number of people in your life that are innately connected, perhaps it’s time to …

Make a new friend.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#130 Embrace Aging

In our older years we are the Autumn of life – where we burst into full color, demonstrating maturity and seasoned perspective.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#130

Embrace Aging

On a rather gloomy day in my late twenties – maybe after I noticed the most significant patch of grey settling in – I spent an entire weekend pampering myself, my skin, and my eyes. I exfoliated, scrubbed, hydrated, and massaged every part of my body that showed any signs of aging. The next day, I stopped for a bottle of wine on the way home from work and got carded… I was elated – beyond – that my efforts at disguising my advancing age (!) had worked!

Valuing Youth

Our culture values youth so much that we tend to fixate on staying young, for women at least and more than one client, friend, and relative has lamented on the aging process weekly for as long as I can remember. Even though we see more and more examples of middle aged and older individuals in the media, there is an acute undercurrent of anti-aging in our current culture. Everywhere we look, we are exposed to ideas of how to ‘stay younger, longer’.

Out of our Control

In practice, I think the most troublesome part of aging is that it is out of our control – this seems to be the component that most people have difficulty with. Even if they attempt to control their health – people are acutely aware that there is an absence of control over the years – time – slipping by. My suggestion for all those things that we can’t control: Embrace or let go!

Embrace

Perhaps to some, these are one in the same. Embracing, for the purpose of this suggestion is to see aging as an honor; a testament to strength and perseverance. It means accepting that our bodies change as the years pass. It means to stop fighting the organic process and to stop wishing for a fountain of youth. It may also mean that we stop spending money on wrinkle removal but see them as honor lines; earned through the years as we loved, laughed, and lived.

It doesn’t mean to give up on self care; to let our bodies atrophy. It doesn’t mean that we give up the goal of making each day count or the joy of learning something new with week that passes. It doesn’t mean that we surrender to the term “I’m too old”.

Let Go

Letting go doesn’t mean that you should necessarily ‘go gray’ – although that may be a stunning option – or to give up on your physical health. It does mean acceptance and letting go of critical thoughts about your appearance as it relates to age. It means to silence any disparaging comments about getting older. It may require conscious effort to be present and find joy in the present rather than lamenting over the past.

Letting go requires you to stop comparing your current self to your younger self with disdain or regret.

Wisdom

With everyday that passes, wisdom grows. Each day is an opportunity to learn and to love – both allowing us to embrace life more completely. In our older years we are the Autumn of life – where we burst into full color, demonstrating maturity and seasoned perspective. Hold onto this ideology and make the effort to…

Embrace aging.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#235 Strive for Authenticity

On major topics many of us do a fair job of staying true to ourselves and yet there are little things that are sometimes disguised as keeping peace …

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#235
Strive for Authenticity

No Compromise

One of the most elementary components of those living in a state of peace, contentment, and happiness is their ability to sustain authenticity in their day to day lives. These people know ‘who’ they are and they don’t compromise their values or beliefs to keep the peace or avoid confrontation. Wait, what? Am I suggesting that you refuse to compromise? Isn’t that the cornerstone of relationship success? The answer is “yes” if the compromise is about likes and dislikes; we’ll eat Mexican today and Chinese next week or we’ll watch Golf today and HGTV tomorrow. It’s a big fat “NO” however, if we are faced with compromising our values and core beliefs.

Conviction

In order to get good at this, we need to have clear focus about what we believe and/or what feels ‘right’ for us as an individual. If you don’t want to take the risk of driving with someone who refuses to wear a seat belt – don’t. If you feel strongly about drugs, alcohol, or sex… own your stance and stand your ground. Work to disregard any judgment that seeks to undermine your position with negativity or ridicule. Most often, those convictions are ignited from the core of ‘who we are’ and when we honor them, we are our most authentic selves.

Physiological clues

Our bodies are amazing barometers of our state of authenticity and its helpful to learn how to read the measurements they provide. When a friend is being racist and that behavior is in deep contrast to your value system, how do you feel? Where do you feel it? Are you nauseous? Is your heart racing? Do you get headaches? Step away from the friend and notice if the symptoms dissipate? If so – your body is blatantly telling you your friends behavior is contradictory to your core either you remove yourself from the condition or you equalize it by sharing your perspective. To stay and do nothing would be disingenuous to you.

True to you

On major topics many of us do a fair job of staying true to ourselves and yet there are little things that are sometimes disguised as keeping peace or just making things easier that corrode our sense of authenticity over time. ‘Going along with the crowd’, ‘not speaking up’, and ‘giving up’ are some of the reasons we fail to honor our core selves. Once or twice may not make a big impact on our system but I find that when it is consistent, our sense of ‘self’ is greatly diminished.

“Why didn’t you go back to school?”
“Because my husband wouldn’t have liked me taking so much time from our family.”
“Why don’t you golf anymore?”
“Because my wife wants me to sleep in with her on weekends.”

Pay attention

When you are present in your life and checking in with yourself on a regular basis, noticing these moments of in-authenticity are easier. Learning to communicate about them so that you are consistent with meeting the needs of your core is helpful as well. Being in tune with your body, honoring your heart, and using your voice are critical skills as you …
Strive for Authenticity

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#241 Keep an Open Mind

Well, it appears that open minded people are actually happier. They tend to be more creative, more inventive, and score higher on academic exams.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#241

Keep an open Mind

Defined

What does it really mean to keep an open mind? By definition, one source states it is “a willingness to try new things or to hear and consider new ideas.” A long discussion on Quora concedes that it is mostly about considering possibilities over probabilities for all things because we are constantly discovering that some ‘facts’ were only our available perspective.

Possibilities

Being open minded means that we are amenable to discovering that what we once considered absolute may not actually be so. Remember when someone thought it was proper to bleed people with leeches? (yikes!) Or, when most of the world’s population believed the world was flat? (apparently, some still do!) Indeed, our thoughts and beliefs are always being challenged and without the ability to consider possibilities – no matter how probable – we will forever stay locked in a rigid belief system.

Benefits

Why would you want to be open minded? Well, it appears that open minded people are actually happier. They tend to be more creative, more inventive, and score higher on academic exams. They are overall more vulnerable, admit to mistakes more readily, and learn faster. Open minded people say “I can” and “let’s try” more than someone with fixed beliefs. Open minded people experience more variety in their lives.

Science and humanity are always teaching us that the only constant is change so it would make sense that believing in possibilities would open more mental and emotional doors. Wrapping our heads around the idea that no matter how probable – in this moment – something seems, it may actually, be possible; a concept that me can consider if we…

Keep an open mind.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#329 of 365 Ways to live Easier, Happier, & More Productive

Ultimately, writing your story has the potential to provide a great sense of peace that where you are now is the result of a winding road and regardless of the bumps…

Sharing a daily life lesson, tip, or hack; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#329

Write your story

If your life ended today, would people really have known you? Is there a truth you want told? Is there a perspective you’ve wished to share? What are the messages and ideas that you’d like to have be a permanent part of your story?

Writing your story is not only a great way for future generations to know you but it is a good way for you to put your life into perspective – to see it as a whole; a living, flowing creation.

The most important element derived from writing your story is that it most likely will demonstrate great resilience. Most of us have endured pain, heartache, disappointment, despair, and fear. By describing those times in conjunction with the resolution and emergence into something different, we are able to see the entirety of the cycle instead of staying focused on the more noxious elements.

Your story gives your life a living voice, one that others may connect to, and one with which others may resonate. It may offer hope to others experiencing similar adverse events; showing them how to move toward the other side.

Writing your story allows your voice to be articulated; to have shape. It demonstrates your side, your perspective, your focus; delivering context that has only been available from your view. It allows you to see the connectedness of events, time, and learning in a way that is only available in retrospect.

It may help you to reaffirm  your values. Often when we see our lives from a deep, rich, linear perspective, it validates our choices; affirms our position; cements our belief system. It helps provide clarity of the things we declare as important in our life.

Ultimately, writing your story has the potential to provide a great sense of peace that where you are now is the result of a winding road and regardless of the bumps… it led here. Even if ‘here’ isn’t where you want to be, you’ll likely notice that this isn’t the first difficult challenge you’ve faced and you’ve demonstrated the resources in the past to move through. You may find new energy to persevere.

No time like the present for you to put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard as you begin to…

Write your story.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

LET LOVE WIN

Treating someone with compassion and empathy takes much less effort than berating them and judging their choices.

“If you trade your authenticity for safety, you may experience the following: anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief.” — Brené Brown

 

I am taking a brief departure from my daily writings to offer a few thoughts about my observations regarding the state of people’s emotions and behavior over the last several days.

 

I’ve watched, discussed, read, and listened to a variety of perspectives and opinions about why people feel the way they do. Almost every client that walked through my door had something to say and digest about the election. Family and friends responded with a plethora of reactions and I had my own. My social media feeds were swarming with comments, memes, articles, and quotes that represented everything from regret, fear, anger, hope, respect, and hate. I witnessed a lot of disrespect and frustration as well as some rationale and integrity. I believe there to be an imbalance in what I personally saw – in terms of empathy, tolerance, and acceptance. Sadly, I thought it was lacking.

 

I believe in something I call PASSIVE PERMISSION. A google search doesn’t offer a definition but if we consider the word PASSIVE it is “accepting or allowing what happens without active response” and the word PERMISSION is “consent; authorization” we can formulate this:

Passive Permission is authorizing, without conscious acknowledgment, an activity or behavior simply by not doing anything to prevent it or by not standing up against it.

 

No one can argue that President-elect Trump demonstrated a lack of respect for many segments of our society – whether it was his intent or not, I do not know for I do not know his heart – however it was there and much of it was hurtful.

 

We have given President-elect Trump passive permission to behave in any manner he deems fit with our vote. We have given him permission to be disrespectful and thereby globally condoned the ‘idea’ that behaving disrespectfully is acceptable.

 

We did this by saying that how you behave is LESS IMPORTANT than what you can do for us.

 

The premise of …I don’t care about your heart, or how you treat people… I care about what you can give me, or what you can do for me… is frightening. It’s a divergence away from what I know as Christian values, as LOVE, as honor, or simple human dignities.

 

Let’s just put the politics aside for a moment and think about respect.  I’m not talking about the respect we earn; I am talking about the basic respect we are entitled to because we are human beings. We don’t have to agree with one another to be respectful.  Treating someone with compassion and empathy takes much less effort than berating them and judging their choices.

 

Let President-elect Trump deal with his own conscience and let each of us pay attention to ours! Look deeply into your own heart and think about what you are choosing – not just in the way of a president but in your day to day life.

 

What is the basis of your personal behavior??

 

If it is to get something – a better life, a better job, a better anything – great! You deserve the best but it will only be the BEST if it doesn’t sell your heart short… if it is authentically coming from a place of integrity and personal honesty. No one can tell you your heart. Only you know it.

 

If you feel anxious, depressed, guilty, or ashamed – those feelings are associated with disingenuous behaviors – inauthentic actions. Perhaps passive permission. What are you allowing that does not match what you believe??

 

We are so very lucky to live in a great country where we have freedom of speech. Some of us get shut down too often and learn that it can be unsafe to vocalize our thoughts. Every single day I am teaching people how to communicate from a place of compassion and respect; from honesty and authenticity; from love and empathy. When we use our voice from those positions it can generally be heard and at least open a discussion. It doesn’t matter if it is a couple learning how to be better communicators with one another, sharing between children and parents, or if it is members of a community, a state, or a nation.

 

Please spend some time self-reflecting on the values that you want to be remembered for – the values you want your children to experience and learn – the values that honor your heart and make sure that your behavior reflects those values.

 

If each one of us can do this – because I believe that there is a kind heart in every single soul – then it won’t matter what President-elect Trump does on the world stage – he is only ONE person.  The collective consciousness of our kindness will overwhelmingly prevail and repair the pain from what a few inflict.

 

Pay attention to the passive permissions you distribute through in-action and through missed opportunities of extending kindness, love, and tolerance. BE the values that you believe in.

 

Let your values / beliefs mold your emotions each time you are challenged to respond to someone or a situation and then behave in accordance!

Let LOVE win!