Motivations for January

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If you are looking to perfectly achieve your goals, you will never achieve them.  Change is a process.  One day you may leap out of bed, jump into your work-out, feel just great, and attack the rest of the day with positivity and motivation as your by-word.  Lucky you!  Make the most of those days.

The next day may be the exact opposite as you drag yourself out of bed, force your way through a leaden work-out, and trudge through the rest of the day.  These are the days that either make or break your transformation.  Do you have the fortitude to keep on going?

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If we can accept that change is often going to feel terrible, but in the end it will be worth it, we can (hopefully) keep on and achieve our goals.   Don’t let those less-than perfect days derail you.  Keep focused on your goals.  Remind yourself that it’s a process, you are on the path.  Sometimes the path is level and straight, other times it’s windy and steep.  Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. You can do it!

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The Perfect Life?

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Are you waiting for your life to be perfect?  How about those 15 or so pounds you want to lose?  Are you waiting to lose them before you do something that you really want to do?  Or maybe you’re waiting until you save up the money to “fix up your house” before you have company over?

Thinking like this will do a couple of things.  First of all, it will prevent you from enjoying yourself and trying new things.  No one else will notice those extra pounds, and besides, if someone does, you probably don’t want to have anything to do with that person anyway.  Secondly, most people won’t judge you on your house.  If you’ve ever noticed, other people are in the process of saving up for some new things, also.

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Joy should be found in the experience of living life.  It doesn’t come from everything being perfect.  Some of the best meals can be served along with walls that need to be painted and floors that need refurnishing.  Those “things” don’t really matter.  How you treat others is what matters.  While I understand that what we see on social media gives most of us the impression that everyone else lives a “perfect” life, remember that most of those pictures are posed in a certain way so that we only see the “best”, and not the rest.  People accentuate the positive and hide the negative.

I’ve talked before about how I find joy in the little things.  The sunrises, sunsets, flowers, cold crisp air of fall.  Nature brings me joy nearly every day.  A positive outlook helps me find my joy.  Look for the good in life and it suddenly appears.  Even the worst day has something good in it, even if it’s a good cup of coffee.  Look for the joy, and it will be there.  I promise!

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Take a Breath

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We all know that today marks the beginning of the Christmas Season.  So, along with all the excitement there is way too much worry and stress.  The stress of whether or not people will like what you’ve bought, how the decorations will look, when will the cookies be done, etc. etc.  Not to mention how much in the hole of debt you may or may not want to go.  So, what to do?  Just take a breath.  Decide what is really important about this time of year.  Stop buying things you and others don’t need.  The whole season should be about love, and not more “stuff”.  Calm down and relax.  Try to not get caught up in things that in reality are simply not important.

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What is brain dump, and is it for You?

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I recently read about this method of de-cluttering your mind, called a brain dump.  It encourages you to write down any excess information you’ve been cluttering your mind with in order to leave your brain with more open space to fill with new information.  What is being suggested is that at the end of every day you spend ten minutes writing down all the “stuff” that is unnecessary, or extraneous information so that it’s not floating around in your brain.  If you can’t think of anything to write, just write “I can’t think of anything to write” until the dam opens and you can release the excessive build-up.

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I actually think this is like writing down your problems, extraneous thoughts or emotions in your journal.  Once you get things out, you can either stop worrying about them, or come up with solutions to problems.  Or you can just get it out, and stop thinking about it. There are times when we spend way too much time thinking about something that is not really important, but because we’re thinking about that we aren’t as productive as we should be.

That’s what a “brain dump” is.  It’s a way to empty out the unnecessary, useless crap from our minds so that we can focus on the things that are important.  Personally, I just call this journaling, since that seems to do the trick for me.  However, a brain dump can be used to write down important information that you might need later (and perhaps for public use), while a journal is usually private.

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However you want to accomplish this, you can decide.  Maybe both ways are good for you.  I do have a notebook where I will write things I might want to use later, and a separate journal for private things.  I do find that once I’ve written “stuff “down, I feel much more grounded in the now.  Let me know if you do some kind version of this in your life, and if it helps you.

http://www.lifehack.org/620550/how-to-declutter-your-brain-and-get-organized?ref=mail&mtype=newsletter_tier_2&mid=20170811&uid=188713&hash=6f7e757f413f454145424c6d7b783a6f7b79&utm_source=newsletter_tier_2&utm_medium=email&action=click

 

Binaural Beats

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Binaural beats are something that I just discovered, and so I thought that I’d write about it here to help spread the word.  Binaural means to hear with both ears, and in this case, means to hear two different sounds, one in each ear.  The history of this dates back to Carl Stumpf a German philosopher who referred to listening to two separate stimuli for each ear in order to create different effects on the brain.

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Today you can go to YouTube and find all different kinds of tones to help with a variety of issues.  You can listen to these for relaxation, creativity, anxiety, focus, etc.  You can listen to just the tones, or the tones with music.  I’ve found that listening to the tones on a very low volume works best for me.  I also like listening to the tones along with music.  There are quite a few videos on YouTube that let you listen that way.

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As a person who is always looking for ways to improve my focus, creativity and reduce my stress levels I found this to be a pretty interesting study of scientific research.  Do you use Binaural beats?  How do you like it?  Has it helped you in life?  Let me know in the comments below.

http://www.web-us.com/thescience.htm

What the Heck is Mindfulness?

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I keep hearing about mindfulness.  It seems to be all over the place, most especially in regard to the workplace.  According to the definitions I’ve found, mindfulness is being aware of your thoughts, emotions or experiences on a moment by moment basis.  As far as employers are concerned, mindfulness is focusing all your thoughts on the task at hand.  Sounds good, but how easy is it to simply focus on what’s in front of you?  My mind jumps around flitting from one thing to the next like a jackrabbit.

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The reason I practice Yoga is that for that half-hour to an hour during my day, I turn my focus to my breath.  If I force myself to think only “breathe in breathe out”, I can empty my mind of all other thoughts and relax my body.   The only other time I can do that is when I say my affirmations to myself while lying in bed waiting for the sleep fairy to knock me out.

I understand the concept of mindfulness, and when I try it while working, the longest I can manage it is in half-hour increments.  Although, I must admit, those are the most productive half-hours I have during the day.  But the effort to reel in my busy little mind that is usually running off in a hundred different directions can be exhausting.

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Does anyone else try this?  And, if you do, how is it going?  Please let me know in the comments below.

Other People’s Negativity

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I don’t know about anyone else, but there will be days when I’ll be bopping along in my happy little bubble, minding my own business and someone will come along and deliberately, with malice, pop my happy bubble. It seems like some people just can’t stand other people to be happy or content. Why not? What is it about someone else’s happiness that can bring out the worst in certain people? And, I swear that they get happy making you, the unsuspecting, unhappy.

      An article I found, http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/dealing-with-other-peoples-negativity.html, talked about this very issue. Please look it up if you find yourself going about your day, and you suddenly get bombarded with negativity. The only way I’ve been responding to this is to leave. Sometimes I simply hide in the bathroom until that negative person goes away. This doesn’t always work, so in the future I’ll try to work on myself. My own thoughts must get stronger, so that they sound louder in my mind then the negativity I hear from someone else.

      Please share how you respond to negativity from others.