A Positive Outlook

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If you tend to dwell in negativity that is all that you will find.  Looking for the best in life will force you to find it.  We do tend to find what it is that we’re looking for, after all.  I know this can be difficult (I too have spent way too much time in negativity), but remember, if you change your focus, you can change your life.

When times are hard, look at what is going right and build positivity from there.  Life is never just one thing.  Positive and negative both surround us, but if you focus on the good things it will give you the strength to overcome the negative.

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September Goals

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Since I fell (okay, jumped) off the “goal train” in August, I really want to do better this month.  So, with no further ado, here is a list of my goals for this month.

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  1. Continue working out hitting the 18 mile per week goal.
  2. Daily haiku’s and photos.
  3. One 600-word story.
  4. Keep reading my Neuro Linguistic book.
  5. Work on my book for children.
  6. Begin re-organizing and fall cleaning (weather permitting).
  7. Print out latest version of my novel.

Okay, I think that’s all for the month.  How are your goal achievements going?

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The End of Summer

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Labor Day is just around the corner.  Have you fulfilled all your summer dreams, or have you simply had a great summer of not accomplishing much?  To tell the truth, I’m in the latter group, and have very few regrets, although I do know that my September is going to be much busier than my August.  Creatively I wrote more than I initially thought, since I’ve been writing a haiku per day – a little project that I was under the mistaken impression would be relatively easy – hah!  However, the best part of this project is that I’ve been taking a photo per haiku, which has been pretty fun.  While I haven’t even touched my novel, I have had a lot of ideas, and have written a couple of 600-word short stories – which, again, is a whole lot harder than you would think.

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So many books, so little time!

Other than that, my summer has been pretty much me sitting around with a book in my face.  I haven’t gotten much done at all…however, now that maybe some cooler weather is on its way – I hope! – I will ramp back up and start getting more of my goals accomplished.  I hope that you enjoy the last weekend of summer!

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Where Thoughts Go, Energy Flows

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This is just a little reminder for you.  Try not to fill your brain up with negativity.  Even though negative thoughts are so easy, don’t be tempted to dwell on them. While we all know that it’s easier to think about how terrible a problem is, the only way to change it is to think of a solution.

While not every problem has a solution, sometimes the solution is to simply stop dwelling on the problem.  In life, there are always going to be things that we can’t change.  We can’t change someone else, so a solution is to stop dwelling on their behavior and think about something you can change – like not letting what they choose to do and say bother you.

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Of course, this is hard – negativity (complaining, dwelling on situations) is so much easier than positivity, and finding a solution.  Remember, it’s a process.  Like anything, it will take you quite a while to focus your energy on what you can do.  Put your thoughts toward positivity and see how it changes your life.

Goals to Accomplish by Labor Day

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As you may have noticed, I’m not working on all my goals this summer.  I’ve got excuses up the yin-yang, but that’s what they are, excuses.  I know that but I seem to be addicted to them anyway.    This summer has been way too hot and humid for my poor little body, but I’ve been trying to do what I can.  Of course, there is a lot more I could do, but summer is for reading, right?

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So here are a few goals I want to accomplish before Labor Day.

  1. Continue to work out daily, and keep with the 18 miles walked per week.
  2. Start working on my children’s series.
  3. Continue organizing and getting my household in order.
  4. Finish the linguistic book.
  5. Work on certificate.

What are your goals for the rest of the summer season?  Have you all been able to go on vacation this summer?  There will be no vacation for us this year, since my husband just started this job in February, but I’m hopeful we’ll be able to go somewhere for a long weekend in March or April.  Let me know how you’re doing with your goals.  Let’s continue to encourage each other along our paths.

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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!