July 27 ♥ Don’t Throw Stones at Every Dog that Barks

Ever have one of those days where you’re distracted by everything? You know you have things to accomplish. You know you need to focus. Yet every shiny thought that flashes into your brain diverts you. Social media, phone beeps and dings, a steady flow of email, interruptions, random thoughts…all compete for our attention. Distractions are everywhere, and they’re not going away any time soon. As much as we we’d like to disconnect, that also isn’t feasible. So what are we to do? Here are 5 ways I’ve found to help reduce the distraction in my life. Empty the trash. Not the wastebasket variety but the mental kind. Take a blank sheet of paper, set a timer for 5 minutes, and then just write down anything that pops into your brain. No censoring. Just rapid writing. At the end of the time period notice how you feel. If you’re like me, you’ll probably feel cleansed. I find that such a brain dump pulls all of the detritus out of my brain, leaving room for the thing I need to focus on. Oh, and throw away the paper you wrote on – the final adieu to the distractions. Clear physical desk clutter. Remove the piles from your desk and keep only the one thing you will be working on. I often put the extraneous files and papers on the floor behind me so that they are effectively out of sight. Clear digital clutter. Only have one application open on your computer at … Continue reading

June 7 ♥ What’s in Your Reflection?

Think back over the past week and select several things that happened to you. First notice: were there more “good” or “bad” memories? That alone should be an indication of how you view your world. Did you remember the things that were less than what you had desired, made you mad, caused you upset, or were painful? Or, did you recall joyful, fulfilling, fun or successful actions? What’s going on here? Our perspective has a major impact on how we view life and the things that happen. We can choose to view the world in a positive light — or not. And this correlates to how we perceive our own self-worth. When you approach a situation, do you think, “I’ll be OK no matter what happens.” Or do you “hope for the best but expect the worst.”? Do you label things that happen to you as problems or opportunities? The way we look at life is an immediate reflection of how we view our place in the world, our power, and our self-esteem. If we respect ourselves, possess self-confidence and trust in our ability to land on our feet no matter what, we become resilient to the events in our lives. Things no longer happen “to” us. We lose the victim mentality because we are strong and self-assured, and because we consciously choose our reactions. Opportunities appear, and “problems” become challenges to learn from and overcome. With self-respect you know what you will and will not accept in your life. You are certain that you … Continue reading

October 21 ♥ Are You Moving Forward or Sitting on Your BUT?

I’ve heard from a lot of women that they’d love to try something new…but… So often there’s that awful, disconcerting but… But where would I find the money, or the time, or the energy? they say. But  I’d have to wait until this or that would happen. My retort? But …  how long are you gonna wait?  What if you believed that the Universe truly is on your side, just waiting for you to take that 1st step? All you’d have to do was begin. And you could take small steps or a giant leap – whatever would feel comfortable. What if the Universe was just waiting for a nod from you? You wouldn’t have to have all the details worked out. You might not even have a clear vision of what exactly you were wanting. You could get moving with what you know…now. The important thing is that you’d be moving forward, not sitting on your But. Now it’s your turn: Where in your life is But getting in the way? What’s holding you back? If you were to take just the teensiest, tiny little step forward, what would you do? What would it take to actually do that itsy bitsy step? Not that much, right? So, get moving! … Continue reading

Sept. 30 ♥ Tolerations – Time to Clean House

What are the things you’re just putting up with in your life? I mean those things that aren’t quite right and that you plan on fixing? Someday… Today comes, and then tomorrow, and they’re still waiting for some action on our part. The thing about “tolerations” is that they drag us down, many times leading us to feel overwhelmed by the things that keep accumulating over time. And these “tolerations” end up cluttering our minds. They’re an energy drain that distracts us from what’s really important in our lives. Now is the time to identify what you’re tolerating! Think of it as the fall cleanup! The first step is figuring out exactly what you’re tolerating. Your tolerations could be: friendships that are no longer reciprocal, incomplete tasks, frustrations at  home or work, unresolved problems, other people’s or your own behavior, clutter, the “shoulds”, unmet needs, crossed boundaries, lack of exercise or sleep, poor eating habits, waffling on decisions, procrastinating – you get the idea. You may not want to do anything about them right now, but just writing them out will raise your awareness, making you much more willing to start handling, fixing and resolving them. So, make a list of what you’re putting up with at work – and at home – in life – to determine what might be cluttering your mind and slowing you down! Over time and as you think of more items, add them to your list. …gotta run, I’m making my list and checking it twice … Continue reading

Don’t Be Afraid to Try

Don’t be afraid to try, because you never look back on life and smile at what you could have attempted. Joy only brightens your countenance over those things you did attempt. ~ Richelle E. Goodrich   I met my Inner Critic up close and personal recently but this time I dealt with him in an entirely different way. Here’s the story. Since moving to New Mexico, I’ve had this creative itch. Maybe it’s the beautiful environment. It might be the ready availability and celebration of art everywhere. I’m not sure where the urge has come from but I’m grateful it’s appeared. And this time I’m choosing not to tamp it down. A few months ago I came across an announcement about a beginners watercolor class. So I registered. Totally spontaneous response. Something in my gut said, “Go for it!” Then I got the materials list. Wow! Tons of stuff to buy. Lots of technical jargon. So many unknowns. Those thoughts awakened my Inner Critic’s attention. “Hello…why are you spending money on stuff you’ll just end up throwing away? What makes you think you have any talent? How do you know you’ll be any good? You know you’re gonna be sitting in a class where everyone else has much more experience than you!” You get the idea. But this time I fought back. I really wanted to take this class. Just for the heck of it. So I reminded myself that the course was for beginners, not professional artists. 1 point for me, 0 … Continue reading