Eggshells and You

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I just wanted to post this quote I found for those of you who are dealing with hyper-critical family members.  One of the terrible things about being criticized for everything you do, is how it dismantles your sense of self.  Remember when someone is belittling you, it says more about them then it does you.  No matter how hard it may be, look within for your sense of self, stand tall, and even if you have to dance in the shadows, dance.

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How do You Change Your Life?

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Most people probably have some thing or other about their life that they’d love to change.  Whether it’s their job, home or health, many people are not contented with all aspects of their lives.  As someone who has spent many years making goals and then failing to achieve said goals, I’ve recently realized why I didn’t achieve them.  There is a process to goal-making that many of us know:  write down your goal; set steps to take so you can achieve the goal; do the work. While this model is good, I’ve found it’s not going to get you where you want to go.  To do that, you have to add something else – affirmations.

Yep, for years I had the idea that affirmations were for “other people” and I didn’t really need them.  However, on January 2nd I started saying affirmations every night before I fell asleep.  And, guess what?  Somewhere in my beanie little brain, I started to think these affirmations just might be correct.  And, since my easiest (ha! – easy!) goal was getting up and working out, that’s what I’ve done.  I’ve now formed a habit, and I get up every morning between 4:45 and 6:00 (which is my idea of “sleeping late”) and work out.  I don’t do this because I “love it”, I do it because it’s my goal, and now has become a part of my daily routine.

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How did I come to this miraculous conclusion?  Well, when I was writing my 200+ Days of Change post, I began wondering why I was actually achieving this specific goal against all the odds – family, time, naysayers, ME, and realized that the affirmations were the only thing I was doing differently this time around.  My affirmations are specific to what I want to accomplish this year, but at the same time they are designed to increase my self-esteem and self-confidence (something a lot of people need to work on).  I believe that the most important ones I say are: “I am a worthy person”; “I believe in myself”; and “I love myself”.  Now that I’ve figured out this works, I’m going to start saying my affirmations in the morning, too.  Maybe this will help me start achieving my other goals, too.

If you have low self-esteem, or self-confidence issues, I urge you to say these affirmations to yourself as many times as you can every day.  Just keep saying them even if it makes you feel silly or uncomfortable – I had a really hard time at first, but just kept at it (fake it until you believe it).  See if you don’t feel differently after 30 or 60 days of being consistent.  It’s a small thing to do, but it just might help you change your life for the better.

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200+ Days of Change

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We are already 200+ days into 2018.  That fact is both surprising and horrifying at the same time.  I know that I’m not where I wanted to be by this time this year.  I don’t feel like I’ve done nearly the things that I wanted to.  However, the one thing that I’ve done, every day since January 2nd, is to work out.  Every. Single. Day.  Even the days with a heat index of 105° I have gotten up and worked out.  Last week was terribly hot and humid, but instead of walking my 2+miles outside in the heat, I walked in the morning, in my basement using a Denise Austin DVD.  So, I still got it done.  I achieved my 18 mile-a-week goal anyway.

So, there have been benefits – I’ve got some muscles, my Buddha-belly is smaller and my butt is no longer on the floor.  While I’ve added planks, twists and sit-ups; I’m still looking forward to finding that exact Billy Blanks workout so that I can get started on Tae Bo again.  For the record, I’m sure that I’m just being too picky and too worried about whether I can keep up.  There is nothing worse than thinking you’re doing well, and then trying a much too hard workout.  I’ve been consistently doing some Sun Salutations every day so that my flexibility has improved.  Am I happy with my progress?  Yes, but there is room for improvement.

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As far as reactions to my changing…my daughter has been a wonderful cheerleader.  However, there are other people in my life who have been less than enthusiastic.  As a matter of fact, they’ve recently gone out of their way to make my feel terrible for “wasting” time on making myself healthier.  When this behavior has happened in the past, I’ve actually been bullied into stopping.  Not. This. Time.  And, I’m beginning to apply this new mind-set to other areas of my life.  Hopefully I’ll have some other improvements in the next 100 days.  How have your changes been going?  Share and let us know!

 

Quotes to Boost Your Self-Esteem

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This is simply to go along with my Monday post regarding self-esteem and goals.  So, here are some quotes to help you.

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How Your Self-esteem Affects Your Goals

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There are many reasons why people don’t manage to attain their goals.  Some people simply lose interest, others change their goals, but some of us may have self-esteem issues that make it difficult for us to reach the goals we set for ourselves.  Of course, when this happens, what little self-esteem we do have takes a hit, and attaining any goals we set then becomes that much more difficult.

Sometimes when we have low self-esteem we can either set goals that are too high, (perfection anyone?) or too low.  Setting the bar too low doesn’t really help with improving self-esteem since we denigrate whatever it is that we attained.  On the other hand, perfection never helped anyone ever.  I can get caught up in the perfection issue way too easily.  As a matter of fact, I’ve managed to sabotage myself nearly every time I’ve decided to start working out by insisting on getting up every morning at a certain time – no exceptions.  As a matter of fact, I really think that the only reason I’m still working out this time is because I allow myself to “sleep in” (if 6:00 am can be considered sleeping in).  By allowing myself an extra hour or hour-and-a-half of sleep once or twice a week, I’ve taken the perfection out of the mix.  And, I’m still getting up and working out.  Take that perfection!

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So, when you start your goal setting process ask yourself if your goal is based on perfection.  If it is, change that goal.  If it’s a goal that’s way too low, ask yourself if you want to keep it, attain it and then make the goal a little harder, or do you want to just set a slightly harder goal.  Being able to attain part one of a goal and then commit to part two may give you the self-esteem boost that you want.  By attaining goals, we improve our self-esteem, and that is a good thing!  I’ve left an interesting link for you to read below.

https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/self-esteem-and-standards/

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Why Are People from Honduras Seeking Asylum?

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As we all know, there are a lot of people from Central and South America seeking asylum at our southern border.  However, I haven’t really seen much information regarding the reasons why they’re seeking asylum.  We’ve all heard about the gangs, etc. but not the reasons why these countries are falling apart.  Since I’m an information seeker, I decided to look into one of these countries and let you know why there are so many problems there.  My first pick was Honduras since this was the country that caught my eye.

In my reading I found out that in the early 1900’s U.S. banana companies set up shop in Honduras, bribed government officials, gained control of over 1 million acres of land and sent the resulting money and crops to the U.S.  This buy-up of land converted Honduras into a one-crop economy, setting the entire nation up for massive poverty.  At the same time, U.S. military was used to prevent any uprising against the corporations by the citizens of Honduras, while the banana companies gained monetary control of the country.  By the time Regan was president, Honduras was often referred to as “U.S.S. Honduras”.    Honduras was also used as a place to train the Contras of Nicaragua, which in turn increased the U.S. military presence in Honduras.  This militarized Honduran society and brought about a crack down of any and all resistance to the government, thus squashing democracy.  The U.S. was also instrumental in disrupting the coffee trade under the policy of “globalization”, which led to the destabilization of this industry.

All this has led to an increase in military, a loss of human rights, and many human rights violations.  When the citizens elected Manuel Zelaya, a progressive president in 2006, his promise of reforms upset the ruling oligarchy, who then staged a military coup to overthrow the elected government.  Poverty is a huge problem, with drug lords and a corrupt government, police and military working together.  The U.S. is also at fault for militarily supporting this coup against the wishes of the 35-member Organization of American States.

So, this is a quick over-view of the problems in Honduras.  From what I have seen, the other countries from which asylum-seekers are coming have a history with the U.S. that is much the same.  Clearly, the fault is not with the people who have walked thousands of miles seeking asylum.  I’ve left some links below for your education.  Once again, nothing happens in a vacuum, and we need to look at the history of a problem before we start assigning blame.

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https://theconversation.com/how-us-policy-in-honduras-set-the-stage-for-todays-mass-migration-65935

https://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/27/opinion/in-honduras-a-mess-helped-by-the-us.html

 

Who Are We – Do We Know?

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I can’t let silence speak for me.  I don’t want to stay quiet on what is happening to children in this country.  I do understand that the U.S. has a long history of genocide, slavery, stealing children from indigenous peoples, stealing children from slaves, separating Japanese families.    This is who we have been, but I had thought that we’d finally grown up and learned from our mistakes.

I have been proven wrong once again.  We are continuing to our past in our present, and most likely into our future.  This is appalling, and against all human rights.  The U.N. council was correct in condemning this outrageous behavior.  Not only are we taking the children, but we are refusing to tell the parents where the children are.  (And, in many cases the government has simply lost children).  We are at a point in our history where there are two paths we can go down.  One leads to less rights and justice for everyone, and the other leads to empathy and compassion.  Please don’t tell me you are a Christian while also telling me that taking children away from their families is an okay thing to do.  The two do not go together.  “If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well.”  James 2:8. Many of the people coming to our borders are seeking asylum, they are not illegal.  Yet, we are treating them as such.  By the way, illegal entry is a misdemeanor, not a felony, so it is comparable to getting a speeding ticket.  Did you lose your children when you got a speeding ticket?  No, of course not.

If you are upset and outraged by this policy, please let your congressmen/women know.  Make your voice heard.  Don’t be silent, lest your silence be assumed to be agreement.

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