Using Gratitude to Move Forward in Life!

The news is depressing.  Your feed is depressing.  The world feels…well depressing right now.  It’s like a wet cloak…on a cold day.  You know you need to shrug it off to get warm, but where can you go to find warmth?

You look around to the chaos that is out there and you just don’t know where to go.  I’ll admit that I was like this for a very long time.  Then one day, I really have no idea what changed, but I decided I had enough.  I decided to say one positive quote a day to all my friends on social media.  Then I decided to blog.

If you use the search button with the drop-down of months and you go back a few years to the beginning, you will likely “read” me in a whole different way.  I was diagnosed with secondary depression after getting a bunch of invisible diseases...that had no cure.  Note, that word links to a search on the term “invisible diseases” so you can read my raw, angry, old posts. 

I never delete a blog post though…as I want you to be able to see my progression with not only my health, but my feelings.  As I started to practice focusing on the positives in my life, my life started to change.

I had been stuck, and was slowly, miraculously, getting UNSTUCK in all areas of my life.  I started being able to move again without pain…which was amazing.  I started my yoga teacher journey, which was painful in the beginning yet extraordinary in the fact that I was able to complete 200 hours of Vinyasa Yoga Teach Training.  Me.  Me who had hardly been able to move.

I started being asked to do important work…work that I had always wanted to do like to speak in London.  I wanted to change people’s lives after learning that I could truly move forward in life. 

So what changed?

  1. Me.  I had to get to rock bottom.  It sucked there.  Quite simply put it was like hell.  But one of my favorite quotes always said “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” and I believe ole’ Churchill was right.
  2. I had to tame my thoughts.  Erm mah gosh y’all.  My mind was like a mess.  A hot mess…except I was cold all the time, but you get the picture.  Thoughts create stress, and then the spiral starts.  I wasn’t sure if I was anxious or depressed.  So I did what I do best and wrote about it all to help others.
  3. I started writing more…because that’s what I do best.  I found out how therapeutic writing was and how it changes the thought patterns.  Releases stress and lets you clear your mind.  It literally became an itch in the night on nights the pain was so bad I couldn’t sleep.  I would write it out.
  4. I learned to be grateful.  I am never the same person year after year, and for that I am thankful.  Gratitude in the little things was so important to me.  It helped calm the mind and turn my emotions into a point on which to focus.  The pain was no longer the focus.  The present moment was.
  5. My well-being changed.  There are still days I need reminders.  No one is perfect, okay?  But I practice this constant state of being more mindful than I was on say an off day.  Being more grateful or more appreciative.
  6. Old me got angry really fast…gratitude helped me slow down my emotions.  I am not going to pretend that the Scorpio doesn’t still have her moments; however, I use my sensitive side to tap into the world.  I feel what’s going on, like in slow motion, under the surface, and think about what I can be learning in this situation.  What can I be thankful for?  Sometimes, it’s things like “I am thankful I have yoga.”  But whatever it is, I use it in my head because maybe the other person doesn’t have this kind of support or system and really just needs my compassion at that moment.
  7. Surround yourself with what you want to become…became my mantra.  My quote.  That I use daily.  It was so important to me to be able to offer that gift to others that I recently completed my course on using gratitude to shape your life and would love it if you are interested in joining the journey.  For the E-book only, click this link.

Ultimately, we are on this earth for a short while and I believe I was put here to help others wake up to the fact that we really do have the power to say this is not how my story is going to go.  The truth is, gratitude can move you forward in life and make the unbearable things more bearable.  While increasing your level of gratitude you are actually increasing your health and wellness.  You are learning to change your self-talk and that’s a powerful thing.  I hope to see you in my group soon.  Thank you so much for reading!

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Law Of Attraction And Attracting Positive Things Into Your Life

Believe it or not, a better life may be as simple as attracting it. This is thanks to a powerful force known as the Law Of Attraction.

Many people are well aware of this powerful universal law and use it to their advantage on a regular basis. However, some people are not aware of it and inadvertently attract negative things into their lives. That’s the tricky part about the Law Of Attraction, it works both ways, bad and good.

I’m sure you would like this law to work for you instead of against you. If this is the case, the best place to start is understanding the law and how it works.

Here is a brief explanation…

Basically, everything we do, think and say emits energy. The more positive things we do, the more positive energy we send out. On the other hand, the more negative things we do, the more negative energy we send out.

This energy acts like a magnet and draws similar energies into our lives. Therefore, the circumstances, people and everything else in our lives is a direct result of our actions.

For this reason, we should go out of our way to think positively, speak positively and make positive actions in every day of our lives.

This is something that can take some practice to master, especially when it comes to trying to avoid negative thoughts. After all, it can be hard to stop a thought, they sometimes just happen. However, as with anything else in life, practice makes perfect and the more you work on this valuable skill, the easier it will become.

Here are a couple of simple exercises to get you started…

  1. Focus On The Positives

One simple way to change the way you see things is to begin looking for the positive in every situation and every person. Even when it doesn’t seem like it, there is always an upside to everything.

Next time you feel negative thoughts entering your mind, replace them with positive ones. Dig deep and find something good about the person or situation that is causing negative thoughts. Once you have replaced the thoughts, reinforce the behavior with a small reward. Anything will work, even one of your favorite candy bars.

  1. The Gratitude Exercise

Gratitude goes a long way with the Law OF Attraction. This is entirely understandable. After all, nothing or no one wants to do something without it being appreciated, including the Universe.

Therefore, the more appreciation you show for what you have in your life, the more positive things you will attract.

At times this can be difficult, especially during rough times. However, it’s important to remember that things could always be worse and they will surely become that way if you do not show gratitude for the things you do have in life.

You may want to take the time at least once a day to show appreciation for something you have in life. This simple act will surely attract blessings into your life.

The Law Of Attraction is nothing to fear or try to avoid. Instead we should embrace it and be thankful for it, as this law can bring an abundance of blessings into our lives.

It may be hard for some people to believe, but creating a better life can be as simple as attracting it!

 

sean_bioAbout our guest blogger:

Sean May is the founder of Science of Imagery. Sean focuses on helping individuals and companies reach their personal and professional goals while working to make the world a better place, one smile at a time. He has over 10 years of experience in the Personal Development space, using many different modalities and techniques to help break through old belief patterns and focusing on making things as fun as possible to break through any negativity or seriousness.

 

5 Ways to Increase Gratitude

Increasing gratitude doesn’t seem like such a hard task, does it?  Well for many people who live in pain daily, it is.  But what if, just for the next 4 weeks, you focused on other tasks instead of your pain.  Maybe you thought about ways to increase your fitness for a week, or to eat beautiful and nutritious food the next week, or ways to help create balance in your life and help deal with your stress, and lastly you increased your self-care.  These are actually the steps I started taking when I took back my life from pain.

I began looking deeply inside my soul for true and honest answers to questions that needed to be asked.  I developed a series of workbooks on these tasks and questions to help others, but you can read more about that under my Head|Heart|Health tab.  I am here to offer you some free resources on ways you can increase gratitude in your life right now, no matter what is going on.  Remember who you are talking to here??  trust me when I say I really and truly understand that the first step is often the hardest one to take.

Let’s deconstruct this for a moment.  Gratitude is feeling thankful and appreciative for people, things, and sometimes everything in between.  That warm feeling you get when you drive up to the coffee window and someone has just paid for yours, or the random man in the grocery store, for whatever reason, hands your family a $50 bill, and says it’s on him.  <<< this happened.  So if other people are creating experiences for other people like this, no matter what is going on in the NEWS my friends, let’s not promote what we hate.  Let’s work to increase feelings of gratitude in ourselves and therefore in others we encounter through our positive actions.

5 Ways to Increase Gratitude:

  1. Say thank you as your feet hit the floor.  Are you in pain?  No offense, I totally feel you, but for just a second, shift your thoughts right now as you get out of bed.  Whatever your dominant foot is, as you swing it over the bed, the second it touches the floor, say thank you.  Say thank you all the way to the bathroom, because that’s where you probably go first.  Focus inward as you really let the words thank you settle into your entire being.  This gets you ready for the next tip.
  2. Using a dry-erase marker, write your positive affirmations on the mirra, that’s southern for mirror, and immediately look at them as you are waking up.  I don’t know what others need to hear, but coming from 3 years of re-setting my mind to focus on others things instead of pain, I can tell you what I used.  I am healthy (I wasn’t), I am whole, (I didn’t think so), and I am healing (I was, but couldn’t see it yet).  So I would think to myself I am healthy and envision a healthy me for just a moment and be grateful for that health.  I would picture myself whole, which to me at the time was without pain, anger, and depression.  Lastly, I would see myself as healed.  Someone my girls could look up to again.  Not the pajama-clad fibromyalgia, Hashimoto’s, well you get the picture, mom I had become.  Again, it was all about changing my perspective.
  3. Journal it down.  My writings at first were not really full of gratitude.  They actually seemed full of other feelings that I was trying to get away from.  So instead of that, I cut myself loose from anyone and anything that created the opposite of what I was really and truly trying to create for myself in my life.  I started un-becoming everything I was not.  I created a pattern of healing for myself by first going to the worst parts.  I deconstructed my fear.  Then I didn’t look back.  I wrote what I was happy about each day until gradually, I didn’t think about what went wrong as much.
  4. Yoga or meditation.  Yes, eventually, after all the pain, I became a yoga teacher.  But I started out slowly.  We all have to start somewhere, remember?  Here is a post about what I did to start my journey, so you can read a bit more on restorative yoga.  This allowed me to still the patterns of my mind and practice an age-old flowing meditation.  Please don’t mistake yoga for something it is not.  It is not a religion.  It is quite simply a method for dealing with the suffering of life.  As I started meditation, one yogi told me it can be your time to get closer to God or whatever you believe by listening to your inner wisdom that actually can be God trying to talk to you.  It is simply a way to practice mindfulness and inner stillness in this very face paced world.
  5. Practice pausing in your day.  This one is very important because so often, we react first.  What if what the other person said to you actually wasn’t about you at all?  Yes, it feels that way all the time.  I am a Scorpio who is quick to anger…need I say more?  What if, for just a moment, the hurtful feelings we got from the e-mail, message or phone call, was paused.  Like on TV.  Okay, now we have a moment to look at it.  You know what, Bob looked stressed out today didn’t he?  I wonder if he has too much on his plate and someone already chewed him out, so when he sent this, he in turn, did the same to me because that was the energy he was feeling?  I don’t have to continue the pattern.  This isn’t even about me at all.  Maybe I will go around the corner and say hey, Bob, what can I do to help you?  Bob will certainly be surprised.  He may even start to feel grateful, as well as sorry, but that’s his stuff, so I am going to promote what I love instead of bashing him right back.

Research has shown through decades of studies, that practicing gratitude can, in fact, have powerful and lasting effects on physical well-being, social relationships, and most importantly self-worth.  So often we get caught in a cycle that needs to be broken, and guess what happens when we take back control?  Research again reports that we develop stronger immune systems, better sleep, and less pain and aches.  Well I’ll be…an example of this.  From not moving to yoga teacher…I hope you start some of these practices today!   Need even more help?  Try this E-book here.

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Now open: The Head|Heart|Health Club!  See top tab.

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5 Tips on How to Find Yourself

Throughout the last 5 years, I have read lots of book trying to point me in the right direction of some “head clarity”.  I have shared what I learned with friends hoping to help them too.  But in the end, I realized, it doesn’t matter what I share with them because the quest to “find yourself” is a deeply spiritual trip that only you can make.

Maybe you have lost your job, or illness got in the way somehow and changed your entire future…but think about it as the BIG picture, it never really changed your future.  This IS your future.  What you are living right now.  So how do we come to terms with that and find a way to move forward?

5 Tips on How to Find Yourself

  1. Who were you before this perfect version of what your life was supposed to be entered your head?  Is it possible that this person is still under there and if so, how do we let her free?  Take out your journal…because by now you know I am going to say that with some of my exercises.  Write your name in a circle in the center of your journal page.  Write all the words you would use to describe yourself…before you think you got lost.  Everything you write must be something you like.  I know, shocking, but you can do this.  I believe in you.  Take a few seconds to ground yourself by breathing in and out and really concentrating on your name.  Bring up that vision of you.  What is the first word that comes to mind?  Write it and go from there.
  2. Did you remember your dreams?  On the next page, think about what you wanted to do before you felt lost.  Are you doing it?  Again, if this is hard, close your eyes.  Breathe.  Center. Now write what comes to you as you think about what your soul desires.  What steps are you making to get there?  What small steps could you make to start going that way?
  3. Are you accepting what comes to you?  If we drop everyone’s expectation for a minute…have you turned down something that came to you because of what others might think?  There might be a lesson that you missed because of what others would think or an opportunity you walked away from that you wished you hadn’t.  Don’t look back.  Open new doors. Continue on.  Write one thing that if it came to you, you would be open to accepting it right now!  Breathe.  Center.  Write.
  4. How often do you practice stillness?  Go back to your list of words that you wrote to describe yourself.  Pick a word that you really, really like.  I’ll start.  “I am _____.”  I am going to insert the word strong.  So in my moments of stillness, I am going to think and affirm to myself that I am strong.  No other thoughts are going to come into my head as I think about this.  Similarly, you can use “I am healthy.” This puts you in control of your thoughts, not the other way around.  They are thoughts.  YOUR thoughts.  Control them with this practice and remember who you are.  Practice these Gratitude Mantras if you are stuck.
  5. Have you gotten out of your comfort zone, or are you digging in and making it a permanent residence?  Interesting and fabulous things can happen when you get out of the comfort zone.  This crazy yoga pose I had convinced myself I was not strong enough to do, well I got mad, hahaha, anyway, and then I tried it.  I laugh because use your emotions for a higher purpose.  Don’t let them take you down a level.  So, use your fear of being uncomfortable just for a minute.  Think about worst case scenario.  For me, it was falling over and getting hurt.  But I was safe because hubby, who might have made me mad, I don’t know, was my spotter.  So he wasn’t going to let me fall..and when I realized that I could do it, well I said a cuss word really loud because I do that in my head, and sometimes they just come out of my mouth too.  But I did the pose.  How long could I have been practicing that if I hadn’t been afraid of failure because I was once not strong enough?  I was my own worst enemy.  So are you…but chances are, you know that.

Need more help?  Check this out.

Find YourselfLike this post?  There is more of this kind of thing in my new program 4 Weeks to Wellness. Or Head|Heart|Health tab at the top of the blog.

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The Formula for Happiness.

fun people

We need to reverse the formula for happiness and success.  Do you follow the formula of if I work harder, I will be more successful and then I will be happier?  Watch this and see what you think.  The Happiness Advantage: Linking Positive Brains to Performance.  Your brain at positive is 31% more productive that at negative, neutral or stressed levels.  Hmm.

Did you realize that being happy has a direct correlation with your performance?  Finding a way to be positive in the present moment is imperative to you performing better.  But…how can we do that when we are under stressed out conditions?  Guess what.  I have some ideas.

Dopamine makes you happier and turns on all the learning centers in your brain.  What are you doing when you are not happy I wonder?  Are you making important decisions in an angry state? 

I’m going to be honest.  I used lots of research to come up with my programs that I just launched here under the work with me tab…but I want to be able to give you some ideas that you can begin to use now.

Creating Lasting Positive Change:

I referenced Shawn’s video, so watch it!
  • 3 Gratitudes, new things you are grateful for each day!  (remember my previous blog post??  I had not even found his research yet, but look at how forward thinking we are.  It goes together!)
  • Journaling (WAIT!  I didn’t even go to Harvard and I have been writing about this, and counseling my clients for a while.  Research skills work!)
  • Exercise, which yes, includes me continuing to bug you about my yoga research:)  Namaste happy.
  • Meditation…heyyyy.  Here is where I told you about my collaboration with a friend who does guided mediation.  Or you can sign up for free ones online…like Deepak speaking into your ear.
  • Last, but not least, what I wrote about last week.  Random Acts of Kindness.  My friend Shelli did some shout-outs on Facebook one day and let me tell you, it was nice.  It can be that small to you, but to the person you are praising it means you are thinking about them and that kind of recognition whether public or private is a happiness booster for both of you!

The interesting thing about all of this, is that if you use the search feature, you can see some of the things I have written about the above ways to create your lasting positive change.  I have also come up with workbooks and other things to help my clients over the years, but the bottom line is, if you do the work on the inside, you will start to see results on the outside.  ~Aimee

Want even more help?  Check this out.

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The Forlorn Stranger

I haven’t done one of these posts in a while, so here you go.  I can’t stop thinking tonight and that usually means I really have to write about it.  Whatever “it” really is.  Every November, I try to do the posts that show you who I am.  Not just because I am a Scorpio, but because it feels right to talk to you about giving back. 

The thing is, I need to give myself permission to be human too.  I don’t like the word “judge” because I feel that it is overused.  So let me paint this picture.  I had to take something back to the store.  I didn’t want to, and really wasn’t going out.  TMI, but I use excuses in my head like “It’s raining and I have PMS.” Whatever.  It was true.  However, somehow I decided to get in the car anyway and take something back to the store not near my house.

I had on my yoga clothes, and my hair was crazy…and I drive a pretty ermmmm beat-up looking mini-van.  BUT it’s PAID for.  And has GANDALF on the side as well as my “Not all who wander are lost” sticker…so it’s been good to me.  It might be leaking oil and perhaps my dad thinks it’s going to break down on me…but it gets me from point A to B.

I live with 7 invisible diseases still…give or take some symptoms that could count as more probably, but I look like a middle-aged, gasp, soccer mom.  I can pull off younger according to nice man at Trader Joe’s who ID’d me for wine saying I looked like a high schooler.  I think he just expected a tip.  Or an invite to drink wine.  Who knows.  But the point to this is, I AM JUST TRYING TO MAKE IT like everyone else. 

As I left the store after returning my cheap leggings, I decided to go next door to check out the work out clothes.  I almost missed him he as he blended into the wall.  There was a young man wrapped up with a sign saying homeless.  My heart skipped a beat and I timidly smiled at him, but secretly thought “Oh shit.  I never carry any cash.  I have to do something even if he isn’t for real.”  <<<< notice that last thought.  It’s ok to think that.

As I went to the dressing room, I dug through my purse to find a card and wrote the name of local shelters on the back.  I went in the line, and bought snacks and a bottle of water.  I put them in a bag with the card.  I walked outside and went right up to him.  He didn’t think I was going to stop.  I could tell.  His eyes looked like he was about to cry.  I glanced at what appeared to be a rather new suitcase, and really big at that, but thought, don’t “judge” that.  Look directly at him.  As I kept eye contact, I began to tell him about a few local shelters and I said here is a snack for you.  I asked him if he knew where a few were and he answered about one being only for women.  I wasn’t even trying to trip him up, but I remembered he was right.

I told him about a program I used to refer families to, and I said is this a recent thing?  He said he was “locked up” and lost his job.  I said okay, well if you promise to do what these people tell you, you can stay there.  He actually smiled a bit around the corners of his mouth and thanked me and said he would look into it.  As I walked away, I didn’t want to know his name.  I just got in my car and thanked Jesus and asked him to protect this unknown stranger.  My eyes welled up with tears as I remembered him looking like he was about to cry as I went up to him and made eye contact.

It was not my place to think about all the other people who I saw in the store.  It was not my place to think of the executive man in the suit.  The woman with riding boots and expensive clothes.  The ladies Christmas shopping already.  The woman who passed me in nice work clothes and watched what I was doing.  It was my place to think what if this was me?  What if this was my brother?  What if this was someone I knew?  What if this was an angel checking on humanity reporting back?  <<< Okay, but it could be.  Anyway, so I just wanted to let you know that I am not always an angel either.  But I do have a good heart.  So do you if you listen to it.

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Gratitude Journal Prompts

Stuck in a “Gratitude Rut” because sometimes life is hard?

Years ago, through a series of health issues that seemed to come out of no where, I was left with lots of pain.  Darkness began to saturate my thoughts.  Pain really does lead to fear…fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate and hate leads to suffering.  Yes, Yoda is a wise one.  But so was the Buddha who also spoke of suffering.  Anyway, through a series of steps, hard steps, I began to turn my thoughts back to what was best for me.  That meant getting rid of dead weight.  People who did not support my new habits and ways of life.  That part was really hard, but necessary.  As necessary as breathing because you have to surround yourself with what you are trying to become.  That is one of my top shared quotes as said by me, Aimee Halpin.  So let’s look at some prompts to help you create new habits of the mind.30 days of Thankfulness

Gratitude Prompts:

  • What does it mean to be grateful?  Write a few words about what it means to you.
  • Who do I appreciate?  Think long and hard about this one if necessary.
  • What abilities do I have that I’m grateful for or what am I proud of that I recently accomplished?  It can be going to the store.  It’s that easy.
  • What experiences have I had that I am grateful for?  Have you ever thought about thanking your body?  Weird, I know.  But just ponder that for a minute.
  • What opportunities do I have that I am thankful for that others might not have?  If you are unsure, write down 3 synonyms for gratitude and see what comes up in your mind.
  • What am I taking for granted that, if I stop to think about it, I am grateful for that perhaps others don’t have?  Reflect on something that perhaps even made you stronger than you were before it happened.
  • What is different today than it was a year ago that has really helped me be grateful?  Maybe even something that you learned to grow in a way you never thought possible.
  • Write down ways that you find balance in your life that you can be grateful for…and if you don’t have self-care practices in place, write ways to add them to your life.

These few suggestions can help change your mindset if you even do one a week.  Don’t wait for the right time to think of being grateful…practice it daily.  If you can elaborate on the things that are going right in your life, you start to focus energy on the good and more good will be seen…therefore, more good will appear to really come your way.  Don’t forget to give it a real chance.  It takes time to change your thoughts and methods.

Need more help?  Purchase this E-book for more!

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New:  Want to be surrounded by others working on a similar goal?  Visit the Head|Heart|Health Club today!

 

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Tears of thanks…

So here’s the deal.  You don’t know me other than this blog, but I am the real deal.  Everything I say on here has happened…I decided to update the fan page with a photo of me so that people who have been following me for a long time can feel more connected.  I’ll never forget that day I told my girlfriend I had a secret…I wanted to write about the truth in my life.  She said go for it and the blog was born.  She was like my one fan for a long time.  But I didn’t know that others were really paying attention when I posted it to my Facebook page and that they didn’t know it was my blog.

When I finally admitted that the girl they knew long ago was in fact the girl with invisible diseases, many people were shocked.  Because I look “well”.  Anyway, as most of you know one disease led to another and I was trying to teach kids y’all.  I loved my job.  I did.  It was challenging and hard and scary at times, but I loved making a difference.  More than that, I loved giving things away.  I brought all my kids clothes in…including underwear.  Yes.  Because what you don’t know is that some of it was even brand new.  Why would I give other people’s children things like underwear?  Because they had none of their own.  And socks.  And warm things.  Anyway, it just makes me sad to think of it again.  I put clothes in backpacks because they had “accidents” and never asked for it returned.  Of course sometimes they didn’t have accidents.  I just wanted them to have things.

So I have been feeling like I am not making a difference being out of work this past ummm going on 2 years, to heal my body.  My beautiful friend with cancer understands because she was another teacher.  And when people ask us to do things, it’s hard to say no.  It’s extremely difficult to take care of us first.  Why in the world it is, I have no idea.  So a while back, I wrote a long letter thing to a certain blogger who is kind of awesome.  Her people read it.  They did.  And they sent me a reply.  They are interested in helping my friend.  I opened the e-mail and my eyes were leaking.  I responded and told my friend and we don’t know what will happen, but we just are so happy.  Real HAPPY.  Not even Fappy.

Because life shouldn’t be this hard.  We are all here to help one another…and I have this quote I like about that.  But also GIVING begets GIVING.  Like that part in the Bible where everyone uses the word begets.  It’s true.  I had extra produce because here is a secret.  A friend of mine thought of me for this one day a week job…and it fits my health.  I can rest after and I get fresh produce!!  OHHH and I get to blog about some recipes…even though I secretly don’t enjoy cooking.  So that part is hilarious.  Moving on.  BUT I had something to give back to people, so I went to a house that gives shelter to battered women and homeless women/children.  I gave them a whole box of produce that was mine.  Then I posted on my FB page I wanted to help if anyone knows someone needing produce…and lo and behold a teacher,ha, gotta love us, anyway needed to help a student.  So I zipped over and gave another box of produce.  Then someone else said they needed books and things, but they are out of state, so logistically I am figuring out postage…but I’ll get it done.

AND last but not least, THANK YOU reader.  You know who you are.  You found my Go Fund Me for my dachshund boy…I was thinking people thought he was too old to help.  But you didn’t.  And I can’t stop crying this morning.  You make me HAPPY.  So this was what I needed.  I miss giving to people.  And feeling needed.  You my friend I have never met, are awesome.

Helping handsStill love this quote.

Motivational Monday…

The inspiration I am trying to find for today, is to be thankful in small things.  Some friends of mine had a tragic event happen recently, and it is always hard to process those types of things.  I read this poem and it spoke to me, so no ending quote today:

Be Thankful

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.

Author Unknown

Goodnight Patriots…

A patriot can be defined as “one who loves, supports and defends one’s country”.  From the Latin patria or fatherland.  I am very proud of the men and women who defend our country everyday.  I have a hard time watching previews for patriotic movies…it moves me to see the lengths some people have gone to for our country.  The military wives I have known always seem to shine; however, I know it isn’t easy for them.

Last night I had the privilege of attending a friend’s retirement of service to this great country.  My husband comes from a military family, and when it was time for our friend to hang up his boots, my husband went with him.  It was a very moving experience and I have to say when he said “mission complete”, my heart went out to him.

I have to say that your mission is not complete my friend.  Not yet.  To illustrate my point, I will end with a quote that speaks for itself:

“A man’s country is not a certain area of land, of mountains, rivers, and woods, but it is a principle and patriotism is loyalty to that principle.”  ~George William Curtis

Thank you to all who serve or have served.  Carry on friends…