A Better Way To Live~Day 5

We are what we think we are. What we think about most, usually comes to fruition. The type day we have is seen through our perception. You wanna have a bad day? Think negative thoughts. You wanna have a great day? Wake up grateful, and think pleasant thoughts. Expect a great outcome, and consider the active role we have in choosing our thoughts and what we experience.

Build this day on a foundation of pleasant thoughts. Never fret at any imperfections that you fear may impede your progress. Remind yourself, as often as necessary, that you are a creature of God and have the power to achieve any dream by lifting up your thoughts. You can fly when you decide that you can. Never consider defeat again. Let the vision in your heart be in your life’s blueprint. Smile!

always-do-your-bestWe have all had the experience of seeing how what we dwell on becomes magnified in our lives.  Like a garden our lives will bear the fruit that we tend.  The garden, our lives, is going to produce something, there will be some net result to show as the sum total of the choices we have made.  Poor choices or no active choices made at all and the unattended garden will yield weeds.  Tended, cultivated and paid attention to the garden that is our life will produce in abundance.

A Better Way to Live~Day 4

I was sitting in my home office, gazing out of the window, contemplating my business for the day. My 15-year-old daughter being 5 at that time, came running around the corner and hurried out the front door. Reaching the sidewalk she started skipping toward her friend’s house next door. She spotted me at the window and stopped, turned around and raced back into the house. Bursting into my office, she ran up to me and said, “Mom? You’re my hero!” I have never forgotten that moment, or the seed she planted that day…..

Always reward your long hours of labor and toil in the very best way, surrounded by your family. Nurture their love carefully, remembering that your children need models, not critics, and your own progress will hasten when you constantly strive to present your best side to your children. And even if you have failed at all else in the eyes of the world, if you have a loving family, you are a success.

a-heroI’ve had many home offices situated in beautiful homes. This started years ago when I thought, “Make money and be happy.” Many people work at a job they may not even like, because it pays well. The vision of a material world is not our topic today. This day is about being a hero.

My daughter has watched me overcome some monumental obstacles in life. Actually, she has watched God pull me out of poor choices, and be better because of them. It didn’t matter to her how much money was in my bank account. She was watching to see if I came out on the other side better than I began. Am I a good role model?

When I first noticed her watching me, she would emulate my actions. Putting things back in the proper place when finished, doing little things the same way as I would. Every child does this so pay attention!

ibelieveinyouToday, she is 15 and it’s amazing how the years have made her self-sufficient. She will cook dinner, set the table, and clear the table in a style of her own, but she would do so in a certain order. Sometimes we walk toward the door to leave, and look at one another only to find, we are dressed the same. We are similar in many ways, but twinsies we are not.

She has seen the Mom that makes a lot of money and drives a Mercedes, and is seeing the Mom doing what she loves and driving a truck. If you ask her about her childhood, she doesn’t remember much. She remembers the time I put her in timeout during a dinner party for wanting my attention.

While I was focused on making money to give her everything she needs, all she needed was a Mom that would be present. I encourage you today to spend time with your family! When you leave the office, leave everything there and be present. Be a hero and be worth watching.

 

 

 

 

A Better Way To Live~Day 3

Sitting at my desk looking out the window at the pier, thinking…”It looks cold out there.” I remember standing on that pier over a year ago, in the cold, crying and begging God to help me. To wrap His loving arms around me and just hold me. That was last fall, and this is a new one. Thank you God for new seasons.

Today’s suggestion for A Better Way to Live is a good one. It breaks my heart to see people looking behind them. Our Creator put our eyes in front for a reason!

Whenever you make a mistake or get knocked down by life, don’t look back at it too long. Mistakes are life’s way of teaching you. Your capacity for occasional blunders is inseparable from your capacity to reach your goals. No one wins them all, and your failures, when they happen, are just part of your growth. Shake off your blunders. How will you know your limits without an occasional failure? Never quit, your turn will come.

prayThis is a highly motivational piece of advice. It would be easy for me to give you a big rah-rah speech on brushing yourself off and trying again. Life is not easy, but there is one thing I know. God has a plan for me. That is all I need to know. He has a plan and it is for my good.

Yes, I can make wrong choices, but even then He promises to turn them around for good. Sometimes choices place me in painful situations, but that is where growth happens. When I’m in pain, worry and fear, God is there watching and waiting to see my next move. This is where I’ve learned to hit my knees, or stand before Him and seek HIS plan, not mine. You might recall, my best laid plans got me a 16 year sobriety medallion in AA.

definesusMaybe you’ve heard the song Kelly Clarkson released years ago, “Stronger.” It’s a harsh statement for my vocabulary index, but it makes sense. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!” My outside circumstances had left me dying on the inside. When we start cleaning up the mess on the inside, our outside starts looking better.

A lot of people think what they have material wise, or on the outside, will bring them ultimate joy. Guess what? Wrong. C.S. Lewis says, “Don’t let your happiness depend on something you may lose.” We never physically ‘lose’ ourselves. I’ve been emotionally lost, but my body was still with me. Our spirit dwells inside our body, so everything we truly need cannot be lost. Unless you don’t take care of yourself, and that’s another blog!

I encourage you today to shake off what life is throwing at you and begin again! Every moment is new, and we only have the exact moment that’s in front of us. The past is gone, and the future is not here yet. The choices we make right now, are what paves the path to the life we want to achieve. Make it beautiful.

 

 

 

A Better Way To Live~Day 2

You are valuable. You were designed by the Creator of the Universe and everything He makes is good. The book I’m using for this series, A Better Way to Live, by Og Mandino, was published in August 2009. The next suggestion for a better way to live reveals a drastic change in our society from then up to now.

Today, and every day, deliver more than you are getting paid to do. The victory of success will be half won when you learn the secret of putting out more than is expected in all that you do. Make yourself so valuable in your work that eventually you will become indispensable. Exercise your privilege to go the extra mile, and enjoy all the rewards you receive. You deserve them!

always-do-your-bestMy favorite part of this rule is, ‘Make yourself so valuable in your work that eventually you will become indispensable.”

Greatness starts from within. Over the years, experiences, memories and actions accumulate and store up inside of us. It takes a process of Letting Go of all that, to have a clean slate to work with. By letting go of choices we made that brought us to where we are, we can clearly see where we are, and move forward from there.

You can create yourself to become indispensable. One of the greatest fears in people’s lives is losing their job. There would be no fear if they knew they were irreplaceable. The same holds true in relationships. The fear of your significant other finding someone else. There would be no fear if you loved that person like no one else could.

I encourage you today to start building greatness within. If you need a path, I am here to assist. Being the very best you can be in every aspect of your life will give you a fulfilled life. You cannot take care of anyone else effectively, until you take good care of yourself. Grow yourself and bloom exactly where you’re planted. Something beautiful doesn’t ask for attention, but always gets noticed.

A Better Way to Live~Day 1

I woke up unreasonably early this morning. Usually, I can roll over and fall back to sleep, but not this time. I felt led to go ahead and start typing this up at 4:00 am. If this is your first read, welcome to a season of encouragement! That’s right. I will be right here, encouraging you through the rest of this year! You are just in time for Day One. I am using suggestions from Og Mandino’s book, A Better Way to Live.

Count your blessings. Once you realize how valuable you are and how much you have going for you, the smiles will return, the sun will break out, the music will play, and you will finally be able to move forward toward the life God intended for you…with grace,strength, courage, and confidence.

It may sound silly, but one of the most powerful tools I utilize is making a gratitude list. Waking up early while the house is still quiet. Grabbing pen, paper, and coffee if desired, I start writing out the first thing that comes from my heart to my mind. It starts off slow and simple, like “I’m grateful for waking up”. The words start flowing, and before long I have listed quite a few words and phrases on a piece of paper. Make note of the date, because it’s fascinating to look back at months from now to see where you were.

todolistIf your mornings are crazy busy like mine were when my children were small, take note in your mind while driving to your destination. Even if you can only think of three things, ponder those throughout the day, and feel the gratitude for them.

One of my favorite sayings is, “What we take for granted, someone else is praying for”, so be grateful. If you’re reading this, you already have the beginning of your list. You woke up.

Happiness Holiday’s

I cannot believe it’s November.  Strolling by the aisle of Halloween candy, admiring the 50% off sign, I was pondering, ‘Christmas  is right around the corner’. Unreal!

stevejobsThat prompted me to ponder outside my box, and wonder what other people’s holidays are going to be like. Long gone are the days when I was distraught because my florist hadn’t arrived on time to start decorating the staircases. That seems like a lifetime ago, and its hard to believe it was in my lifetime. Thank you Jesus for the simple life I have today.

How can I encourage others within this time of year that so many dread, or wish to ignore?

When I first started this Blog, I did an Og Mandino post, The Seeds of Success. Months later, readers still find it and view it, so that gave me a revelation. Another one of Og’s book is A Better Way to Live. Within that book are some rules to live by, so here we go.

Each week, now through Christmas, I will post a couple of rules a week. The posts will be brief, I hope, so tune in  here for some heartfelt encouragement! It’s time to enjoy, Thanksgiving, Christmas, friends and family and reflect over this past year. A new year is less than a couple of months away, so start believing now…it’s gonna be the best year ever! Believe.

 

 

Get Disturbed

blog1Do you embrace change? Do you run toward it, or away from it? Most avoid it like a plague. I know I did, until I just couldn’t stand any longer. I was in a world of pain, but was it painful enough to do something about it? We tolerate it for so long, our mind and body get used to it and adjust.

Then it happens. God sends someone right up to you, to gently point out how miserable you are. In my case, it was my daughter. She asked me if I was ever going to smile again? How’s that for ‘in your face’! My parents stayed together for four of us kids, and I was doing the same thing. My child knew I was miserable, so what was my reason? I was out of excuses. It was time for a change.

It was time to get disturbed. Becoming complacent and settling was not where I wanted to be. It was time to decide, would it be more painful to stay stuck, or step out in change?

Are you disturbed? If not, maybe you should be. I encourage you today to reflect upon your life. Is there an area that needs change? It could be something small to something big. When I made a large change, it was easier to make the small changes on a regular basis. By taking a personal inventory on a regular basis, I can keep my side of the street clean.

Over a year ago, I ran into a wise friend of mine. She could see I was struggling with what life was throwing at me. blog2I had a new life, and wasn’t sure of everything, or everyone I was letting into it. I told her, “My life is becoming unmanageable, and I don’t know what to do”. She said, “Look at it and tell it to….STOP IT”! How simple was that? Like you would tell a small child that was being annoying…just stop it!

So, I did. Every little annoyance I had in my life, I told it to STOP! The air cleared and I could see the beginnings of a fabulous life waiting for me. I got rid of the clutter, and could see the beauty! Is there something or someone in your life that needs to hear, “Stop”? I pray today that you will tell them and get ready for every good thing God has in store. God has a life for us that is so much more than we could ever imagine! Sometimes it’s laying under a pile of clutter.