The Seeds of Success by Og Mandino

letting-seed-growGod, I thank you for this day.

I know I have not accomplished as yet all you expect of me, and if that is your reason for bathing me in the fresh dew of another dawn, I am most grateful.

I am prepared at last, to make you proud of me.

I will forget yesterday, with all it’s trial and tribulations, aggravations and setbacks. The past is already a dream from which I can neither retrieve a single word nor erase any foolish deeds.

I will resolve, however, that if I have injured anyone yesterday through my thoughtlessness, I will not let this day’s sun set before I make amends, and nothing I do today will be of greater importance.

I will not fret the future. My success and happiness does not depend on straining to see what lurks dimly on the horizon, but to do, this day, what lies clearly at hand.

I will treasure this day, for it is all I have. I know that’s it’s rushing hours cannot be accumulated or stored, like precious grain, for future use.

I will live as all good actors do when they are on stage-only in the moment. I cannot perform at my best today by regretting my previous act’s mistakes or worrying about the scene to come.

I will embrace today’s difficult tasks, take off my coat, and make dust in the world. I will remember that the more productive I am, the less harm I am apt to suffer, the tastier will be my food, the sweeter my sleep, and the better satisfied I will be with my place in the world.

I will free myself today from slavery to the clock and calendar. Although I will plan this day in order to conserve my steps and energy, I will begin to measure my life in deeds, not years, in thoughts, not seasons.

I will remain aware of how little it takes to make this a happy day. Never will I pursue happiness, because it is not a goal, just a by-product, and there is no happiness in having or in getting, only in giving.

I will run from no danger I might encounter today, because I am certain that nothing will happen to me that I am not equipped to handle with your help. Just as any gem is polished by friction, I am certain to become more valuable through this day’s adversities, and if you close one door, you always open another for me.

I will live this day as if it were Christmas. I will be a giver of gifts and deliver to my enemies the gift of forgiveness, my opponents, tolerance, my friends, a smile, my children, a good example, and every gift will be wrapped with unconditional love.

I will waste not even a precious second today in anger or hate or jealousy or selfishness. I know that the seeds I sow will harvest, because every action, good or bad, is always followed by and equal reaction. I will plant only good seeds today.

I will treat today as a priceless violin. One may draw harmony from it an another, discord, yet no one will blame the instrument. Life is the same, and if I play it correctly, it will give forth beauty, but if I play it ignorantly, it will produce ugliness.

I will condition myself to look on every problem I encounter today as no more than a pebble in my shoe. I remember the pain, so harsh I could hardly walk, and recall my surprise when I removed my shoe and found only a grain of sand.

I will work convinced that nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. To do anything today that is truly worth doing, I must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger, but jump in with gusto and scramble through as well as I can.

I will face the world with goals set for this day, but they will be attainable ones, not the vague, impossible variety declared by those who make a career of failure. I realize that you always try me a little first, to see what I would do with a lot.

I will never hide my talents. If I am silent, I am forgotten, if I do not advance, I will fall back. If I walk away from any challenge today, my self-esteem will be forever scarred, and if I cease to grow, even a little, I will become smaller. I reject the stationary position because it is always the beginning of the end.

I will keep a smile on my face and in my heart even when it hurts today. I know that the world is a looking-glass and gives back to me the reflection of my own soul. Now I understand the secret of correcting the attitude of others and that is to correct my own.

I will turn away from any temptation today that might cause me to break my word or lose my self-respect. I am positive that the only thing I possess more valuable than my life is my honor.

I will work this day with all my strength, content in the knowledge that life does not consist of wallowing in the past or peering anxiously at the future. It is appalling to contemplate the great number of painful steps by which one arrives at a truth so old, so obvious, and so frequently expressed. Whatever it offers, little or much, my life is now.

I will pause whenever I am feeling sorry for myself today, and remember that this is the only day I have and must play it to the fullest. What my part may signify in the great whole. I may not recognize, but I am here to play it and now is the time.

I will remember that those who have fewest regrets are those who take each moment as it comes for all that it’s worth.

This is my day!

These are my seeds.

Thank you, God, for this precious garden of time.

Surviving The Storm

I have a bowl of candy corn sitting on the dining room table. When I wake up, I eventually make my way to that bowl and eat a piece. I don’t buy it year round, or stock up at the end of the season. It’s one of life’s little pleasures for me that I wait for and enjoy while it’s here.

As I’m typing this, the sky is just starting to get light. I sat outside in the porch swing this morning at 5 am. It was dark, quiet, and cold to me. That is how you know a new season is coming in Texas. You put on jeans and a flannel to sit outside, instead of shorts and a tank.

Even though it was dark, I knew it was a new day. In time, the sky would turn blue, and there would be color coming over the horizon. It won’t stay quiet because all God’s creatures will begin announcing the new day. I love sitting and listening to the quiet.

How do you know there is a new season coming over the horizon in your life?

You can feel it.

Just like the change in air temperature this morning on my skin, I can feel a new season is approaching. My last Chemo was a week ago, so thank God that is over. As I sat in the porch swing this morning, my mind was showing me snippets of myself from this year. There was a time not so long ago, the pain in my breast would wake me up and I would sit outside.

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Once I went to the doctor, and received my diagnosis of Breast Cancer, the pain subsided. There has been no more pain, but to get me to the doctor, God used pain. To get me on this path of healing, there was pain involved. Maybe you are going through something painful right now. Let me encourage you to surrender to that pain, and trust that God has a plan.

My mind showed me pictures of sitting in the Chemo chair. Sixteen times at least, and each time took three to five hours. There was one time, my body had an allergic reaction to one of the premeds. They had to unplug me from that, and give me meds for the reaction, and start all over again. That day I closed the place down, and sat in that chair for eight hours.

As you can imagine, the first lesson I learned was how to sit still. I’ve never been good at it. Oh, I could sit still if it was my choice, but to sit still with no choice was very hard for me.

After I came home full of Chemo, my body would just shut down. It would lay in bed for days, and not want to move. I had to tell it what to do. Drink water, and go pee. Sit up and eat something. Three days was as long as I could go without a shower. Just standing in the shower was a major feat. I had to teach my body every week what to do to stay on this path.

Now that the Chemo is over, my body can finish healing. It knows the drill by now, and is expecting to get hit with more Chemo after three weeks. I’m so excited to see how it feels to not get hit. To feel my body continue to heal, and start gaining the weight back that it lost. To feel strength come back into what used to be muscle. To stay out of bed more than in it.

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So, what about the heart? God showed me this week I have closed my heart off as to protect it. My body has been in survival mode for months, so it would seem, my heart followed suit.

Just like teaching my body that everything’s going to be okay, I had to tell my heart that this morning too. I could feel the hardness melt away, and it open up again. I can feel it beating.

The storm will cause us to hit the pause button on our life, and just try to survive. I am not the same person physically, mentally, or spiritually after Chemo. I believe I am better, and will continue to grow. We can either sit in the darkness, usually alone, or wait patiently for it to be light. Today I can feel the warm of the light not only on my skin, but also in my heart.

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Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

A Better Life~Day Two

Early to bed, and early to rise has been my trend recently. I’m diggin’ it. There is nothing like watching God run His paintbrush across this Texas sky first thing in the morning.

I did this series a year ago, under the category, “A Better Way To Live.” My daughter was wondering why I was doing it again. Reading the ones I wrote from a year ago, my writing has changed a good bit. Those barely skim the surface of the topic, so I see where today, my writing goes deeper, and is more heartfelt. It needs to go deeper still, but I’m getting there.

Suggestion #2.

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!

We all go through a dry season with our jobs. I have a part-time job that allows me to work from home three days a week. My boss, who is also a friend of mine for the past 15 years, is easy to work with. He knows I’m going through Chemo, and is very accommodating to the days I don’t have a brain. You have to have a brain to do this job. I’m customer service to Day Traders.

I’m very grateful for this job for many reasons. It allows me to work remotely, and I get to choose my schedule. If I want to travel, I pack up my laptop and go. The job has been kinda dry lately, and not very challenging. At first, I got frustrated with the monotony, but then God showed me the blessing in that. It doesn’t take a lot of thought to do the job well.

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I changed my attitude, and saw the blessing of the job being simpler than normal right now.

Today I can do my job with excellence, and be grateful for what it is. I believe where suggestion two fits in is more toward my writing. I write for God. Even though I don’t see a physical paycheck for writing, my rewards are worth far more than money. He rewards me everyday in the little things that make my heart soar. My every need is met and then some.

My love is writing, but my job brings reliable income. Writing occurs when my heart is so full, it has to flow onto a page. It’s not planned, or scheduled…it just happens. I have several posts sitting in a draft folder where I had to write it out, but didn’t publish. The more I pour out of my heart, the larger the space I have to be filled with more love.

God gave me this job years ago so I could stay at home, and home-school my daughter. He knew I would leave my marriage, and my daughter and I would need each other afterwards.

She has pretty much taught herself high school, and this gave me the opportunity to write. I saw a quote once that said, “Your story could be the key that unlocks someone else’s prison.”That is my hope. That you will find something here that feels like a key to your prison door. If God can work through me to do that, then that will be reward enough for me.

Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

Keep Fighting What

I backslid this morning and went down to the corner store for a cup of coffee. I’ve barely had any coffee with this round of Chemo. The trip to the store wasn’t about coffee after all.

Three days ago, I wrote a Blog and mentioned a song by Phillips, Craig, and Dean. Randy Phillips have been associated with a church in Austin, TX called Promiseland for years.  Standing at the counter of the store this morning, a lady walked up and started talking to me. I had met her before, and it was such a blessing just to take the time to catch up.

We walked outside, and she said something that quickly got my attention. She asked if I was familiar with Promisland Church Austin, and I told her yes. They are bringing a satellite church September 11th to Lockhart, TX. Literally 10 minutes from where I live. We exchanged phone numbers and made plans to go together. So glad I went for that coffee.

This is how God moves in my life.

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I saw this Meme earlier this week and saved it. Didn’t really know why at the time, but today, it makes sense. I noticed that this round of Chemo was trying to kick my butt. I’ve been on a vicious cycle of eating, and sleep the week of, and my quality of life was suffering.

My daughter was visiting a friend last weekend, and this gave me time to ponder who I wanted to be, versus who I was becoming. I was allowing my current circumstances to dictate my quality of life. This was crap. I am better than this, so Monday morning things changed. I made a list of what I wanted to accomplish and started working on the list.

I’ve acquired a new curiosity for life. The things I listed are things God has shown me, that I had put on the back burner due to lack of energy. It was time to look at what I wanted, who I wanted to be, and get to work. My body has been through hell, and I’ve been caring for the inside with good nutrition. It was time to show some care to the outer shell, so Yoga began.

I started doing Yoga 3 years ago and loved it. It makes my body happy, and I’m a firm believer in using your body to strengthen itself. This lead to reading more about it, and downloading some other books that I’ve been curious about. Strengthening the mind, and body so to speak. I got everything accomplished on my list, so today we have a new one.

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Rebuilding myself from where I am today. People have often said to me, “Keep fighting.” That sounded strange because it didn’t feel like a fight. The Chemo was fighting the Cancer, but I discovered what I was fighting for was my life. Not to get lost in the circumstances, and not to become my circumstances. I am not the same woman I was in March. I am better.

I said to someone yesterday, “This has been a remarkable journey.” He said, “I’ve never heard it described that way before.” That is probably true because it’s easy to let the Chemo become bigger than you. Get curious about life again. Muster up all the strength you have and use it to start over. This journey is coming to an end, but it took me straight to a new one.

 

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Barbara is a Writer, Certified Letting Go Coach, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

Scoop and Skim

It took me 50 years to learn the art of napping. All I can say lovelies is, be a faster learner than me. We all have 24 hours in a day. It’s how we use them that brings quality to life.

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This is a photo of my backyard 10 years ago. When we bought this house, the backyard resembled a football field, cradled by these Texas Live Oaks. It took me 3 years to surrender to having this pool put in. It took a certain pool company to even attempt it. Most companies wanted to bulldoze the trees down, so they would have a clean, easy slate.

My then husband was a designer, and he loved landscape design, so he had it all figured out.

That pool was my first glimpse into the present moment. I love hands on type work, where you can see the fruits of your labor. The pool company showed me how to take care of it, and give it’s weekly maintenance. This was one of the first, successful saltwater pools, so if we had a hard rain, it would beat all the salt out. Nothing like waking up to a green pool!

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Here is a bird’s eye view. This was the backyard, so you can imagine what all needed taking care of inside the house. That was my life. Taking care of man-made beauty. Did it bring me joy? One small part of it did. Turning on the waterfall, and gazing into the clear blue water.

The maintenance entailed turning all power off, and backwashing the pump. Unrolling many feet of hose, and placing the end far away from any flowers for the dirty water to have a safe place to go. Roll the hose up back up tightly with precision, and then dumping 50lb bags of salt into the pool. That was the chemical part. Now it was time to scoop and scrub.

This was my favorite part. I would take a long handled net, and walk along all the large rocks you see encompassing the pool. Scooping and skimming the surface of all the debris from those blasted trees. The trees brought some shade, but they were mainly left there for looks. If it looked good, it stayed, no matter the financial cost, or the price I paid personally.

Fast-forward 10 years, and today my life is simple. The house I live in today is about the size of the guest house sitting behind that pool. The monthly payment on that house, was more than I make in a month today. When I left that life behind, all I had was God, my daughter, and me. I can see the natural beauty of life, and have time to care for ‘who’, and not ‘what’.

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I recall moving into our first little house, almost 4 years ago, and staring at the bed. I could not remember the last time I took a nap, because I wanted to, not because I had run myself down. I announced to my daughter in the other room, “I’m taking a nap.” She didn’t question it, but surely she thought it was odd. I fell across that bed, and let myself rest.

I believe God taught me that for a reason. It was normally just a 20 to 30 minute power nap. Anything longer than 30 minutes made me feel worse. I got napping down to a science, and saw that if I took better care of me, I was able to take better care of those who needed me.

My quality of life is based on the time I give it. God, and Chemo have taught me I have very little control over the way I feel, and what I can accomplish in a day. I am just grateful to be writing this the day after Chemo! I have been strong for 30 years, so I discard that cape, and trust God in every area of my life. What do you need to scoop and skim out of your life?

 

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Barbara is a Writer, Certified Letting Go Coach, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. Going through Chemo, and believing God for a miracle is where she stands. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

Reasons or Excuses

I splurged yesterday. My daughter and I had pedicures. I believe if you take care of your feet, your entire body will thank you. I woke up this morning, looked at my toes, and smiled.

I am really into beauty right now. Noticing what’s around me, and enjoying it’s natural state. I spent years buying what I thought was beautiful. There are boxes somewhere full of handmade pottery from NC artists. I think my life was such a mess, I tried filling it up with beautiful things. Maybe covering it up is more accurate. All of that has been scraped away.

My marriage was so ugly, we invested in art. I recall hiring an artist from Austin TX to create two paintings for a living room we were remodeling. He spent time with us, and got a feel for the space we were creating. It’s funny, but I don’t recall telling him we liked water. When he came to us with the finished work, it was a hauntingly accurate portrayal of us.

One painting was rather dark, but had potential. It was a lake view, with foliage around it, but the sky was overcast and cloudy. That described my husband at the time. The other painting was almost an identical lake view, but the sky was noticeably different. It had light breaking through the clouds. That one was mine. The artist painted what he felt from us.

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Those were painted over 10 years ago, and I left them when I left. They are worth a small fortune today, but my happiness, and well being are worth far more than anything there.

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I found this artist this morning, and it made my heart soar. She makes art from flowers, and twigs, so I made it into a Meme. It portrays how natural, and simple, beauty is to me today.

Speaking to a lady yesterday brought back memories of when I left. How it felt, and how it happened. My marriage changed once I got sober. When you think about it, I was drinking on my wedding day, so it makes sense to see that person in a different light without the drink. The more sober I got, the less we had in common. It got to the point the only thing we had in common were our two kids. That was not a reason to stay, but it was a good excuse.

I had a lot of excuses not to leave. To me they were valid reasons, but knowing what I know today, they were only excuses. We had ruined our credit, and had a home foreclosure on record. I thought no one would rent a house to me with my bad credit. Life happens, and credit gets ruined. It doesn’t bother me. My credit score is not who I am in God’s eyes.

All I wanted was a chance to be happy. I knew God had a better plan for me, than what I had gotten myself into. I cannot recall all the feelings associated with that time in my life, because of God, and letting go. The feeling of dread was constant. I dreaded everything because there was no love. No reason for being there anymore because love was long gone.

I stopped looking for reasons, and just started moving. I knew that God would open doors, and close doors, to direct my path. It’s easy to look at what lies ahead, and let that stop you.

You need to tell all that crap how big your God is.

Have faith. When my daughter and I started looking at houses, I’m sure there were Realtors who frowned at my credit. I was going to be a single Mom, and didn’t have a lot of money anymore. When people care about you, and not your bank account, life gets real good quick.

All I had, was who I was. People I have rented from called friends of mine, and past employers to see how I had treated them. That was all they needed. I am a good person.

Do your best, and let God do the rest, has always worked for me. May it work for you too.

 

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Barbara is a Writer, Certified Letting Go Coach, and Mom to her 16-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. Going through Chemo, and believing God for a miracle is where she stands. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

Not My Plan

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I have so enjoyed my three week break from Chemo. It caused me to be pensive, and think about what I want to do next. Yes, I know by now, my plans are not necessarily His plans.

Did I plan on getting a divorce 3 years ago? Better yet, did I plan on my marriage becoming unrecognizable 15 years in, and me staying an additional 10? No, that was not my plan.

Did I plan on moving to the country with my daughter when she turned 13, and raising her alone? Nope. That wasn’t my plan either.

Did I plan on being diagnosed with Breast Cancer near the beginning of 2016, and spend a year focused on that? Well, that was not my plan, but maybe my worst nightmare.

You know what? All these things, and more, have put me exactly where I need to be.

Catching glimpses of my new self during this break, I often pondered what I would be like with Chemo completely out of my system. The doctor assured me there would be no lasting effects of Chemo Brain. My mind would clear back up, once the Chemo was gone.

My daughter says, “You may not be as physically strong as you once were, but you have a new strength.” The physical strength will be simple enough to get back, once this journey is complete. I enjoy that she noticed the new inner strength.

Everything we go through in this life, takes a certain measure of strength. Where I get into trouble is depending on my own strength to get me through. That doesn’t work very well.

God wants us to depend on Him, and pull from His strength. I can feel the difference, and I would much rather trust, and rely on Him to pull me through. Just like trying to plan my life. I can look at what He has given me, writing being one, and use it to the best of my ability.

Allowing myself to be used by Him through my writing is even better. That is when my plan, coincides with His plan, and my options are endless. Let’s roll with that plan.