Compliments Don’t Have to Be a Struggle

So I posted a new quote photo to ponder in my closed group.  Wow!  We had some really good responses.   The group responded in such a way to the question, that I decided to make a FB Live talk about it and this post.

Have you ever hear of the term “sociolinguist”?  It’s the study of language and linguistic behavior as influenced by social and cultural factors. Interesting huh?  A whole study.  In college, I took a very difficult class on linguistics, but I learned more than I would have thought possible about the art of language.

Sociolinguists place our compliment responses into 3 main categories.  We either accept, deflect or reject a compliment. 

The truth is, most of us tend to either deflect or reject compliments.

Why can’t we accept compliments?

Well, women often struggle with how to accept a compliment with grace.  We definitely deflect and talk about what we need to do better next time.  Does this help us?  No.  Not in the least.  If you suffer from low self-esteem, you tend to reject compliments altogether.  Ignore…I didn’t hear you.  Denial…I am a failure.  Argue…I really don’t think so.

Then I watched this video of a woman interviewing other women about their body image and it was so harsh.  Whoa.  I thought…hold up.  That petite lady just said she was gross and fat?  That’s insane.

So why do we deflect compliments so often?

Well, self-esteem, again is a big factor.  We have played that same sad story in our head so many times that we fail to recognize a genuine compliment when we get one.  We also don’t trust other people.  What do they want???  Will I owe them?

The bottom line is, I personally think we are afraid we aren’t worthy.  We have told ourselves this story so many times.  Childhood.  Parents said it to themselves maybe…and the story became part of your story.  But that’s where it can end.  It doesn’t have to continue to be your story.

4 Ways to Accept a Compliment:

  1. Express gratitude.  Thank you is a powerful phrase…it can be enough.
  2. If credit is due elsewhere, acknowledge partners or a team effort. 
  3. Be confident that they actually have noticed you and don’t try to deflect it like you aren’t worthy.  No “but” statements.  True facts.
  4. Avoid a compliment melt-down where you are looking for equal praise to shine back on them.  Don’t think that they are just being nice and looking for their own compliment.  Accept it at face value and accept your gifts.  You are worthy of compliments. 

And to top it off, here would be a great compliment to receive in my household:  Marge, you’re as pretty as Princess Leia and as smart as Yoda. ~Homer Simpson
compliment-people

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Stop Apologizing for These 5 Things

I am perfect.  I never make mistakes.  Neither does anyone else in the world.  This actually false, but hey, it’s okay to make mistakes!  What I want to get away from, is apologizing for everyone’s mistakes.  I am serious.  Sometimes I feel like I have to apologize just for the color of my skin, but I know that would be crazy because I had no control over genetics, pigmentation or anything like that.

Unnecessary apologies don’t help anything.  In fact, it sends the message that you think you are responsible for the issue at hand.  Are you?  Did you create the mess we’re all in right now?  I know I didn’t, yet I honestly do find myself wanting to apologize and I realize that is a reaction more to the fact that I want to help the world change.  However, if I keep apologizing for the state of the world, that is a huge burden for just one person to bear.  I know that I am not alone in feeling this way, so let’s look at a few other things we need to stop apologizing for.

5 Things to Stop Apologizing For:

  1. Your skin color or appearance.  I watched this really interesting short video where the parents in some cultures wanted their kids to be lighter skinned…not just here.  I actually had my mouth drop open at one point when a Korean girl said lighter skin there is associated with beauty.  Or the beautiful girl from Bengali.  You see, no one ever said any of this mess to me, thankfully.  I enjoyed darker skin as one side of my family is naturally olive toned.  I actually researched the factors that cause skin to change color, and there are many different reports, but of course, it was an adaptation to protect ourselves much like my own genetic condition to store iron.  Why would we let this bother us so much?  It’s absurd that this is still an issue today.
  2. Your religion.  Whatever you believe, don’t believe or practice, that is personal.  It has no bearing on my life whatsoever…nor should it.  If someone is making you feel guilty for your beliefs or differences, that really says more about them than you.  Don’t apologize for what you believe in.  It’s okay to be different.
  3. Asking a question.  If the question pertains to something that you just don’t understand, or want to get a better grasp on, why should you apologize for it?  I don’t think it’s necessary to apologize for asking questions during a meeting, or even when something seems like the wrong way to go at work.  You might be the one who asks the question in front of everyone, but I bet you are certainly not the only one who had that question.  You can voice your opinion and be bold without needing to apologize.
  4. Having “you” time.  Why do we apologize for this?  Sometimes I don’t want to be involved in someone’s drama, mess or ridiculousness.  Maybe I just really want to have me time…lots.  But that is actually no one’s business.  I do like lots of time alone and I also enjoy time with friends.  Thankfully, my friends get it if I say I don’t feel like doing something or not right now, or whatever I say.  The word no should be enough without needing to apologize for taking a step back.
  5. Circumstances, or health problems, you can’t control.  I felt guilty for so long on this one.  Wow.  Why?  Because I was born with iron overload and didn’t know it??  How the hell was that my fault and why did I keep carrying that around?  I don’t know.  It really wasn’t my fault.  If there are circumstances beyond your control, stop apologizing.  You are wasting precious time feeling guilty, sorry, angry and other emotions that have no place in your life.  They are taking up head space, so kick them out.  Don’t say you are sorry if someone shares something difficult with you as well <<< I have to work on this one.  Try “I can’t imagine how you feel.” Or “That must be difficult.”  Why do we apologize like we caused it???  I know it’s instinct, so I really have to work on this one.

Stop hating yourself

Grow Your Self-Confidence With These 7 Tips!

I bet you never think that famous people, writers, doctors, lawyers and perhaps even great speakers once had to grow their self-confidence?  Well, it’s true.  This is not something that is taught in school.  Some people think that we are born that way, but the truth is, we can actually cultivate it like a talent. 

Imagine playing the piano and practicing over and over to become better at it.  Now imagine looking at yourself in the mirror, saying hello and what you do.  If it does not inspire you, try saying it with a smile.  Seriously.  Then say it while imagining yourself in your favorite “power” outfit…whatever that looks like.  Let’s keep working on it with these 7 tips.

7 Ways to Grow Your Self-Confidence:

  1. Get clear on what you want your day to look like.  That’s right.  YOU decide!  Set your intention and write it down.  Make a deliberate act to bring about what you want your day to look like.  How is it going to feel to nail that speech, ask that person out, or tackle the meeting you have to get through?  Have a strong sense of purpose guide you through your day as you constantly think of your intention.
  2. Get out of your own way.  At the next social event, go mingle.  No matter how difficult it has been before, at least try it.  You don’t know anyone in a certain section of your office?  Go over and introduce yourself.  You never know what might come of it.
  3. Stop being plugged in and on auto-pilot.  Don’t say yes to things that you want to say no to…and take control of your life.  Be real.  What do you wish you had more of?  What do you wish you had less of?  What have you been doing to fix this?  Seriously??  Have you been doing anything to fix this?  Think about it and make a conscious decision to go for what you want.  not for what someone else might want.
  4. Don’t tell yourself that you can’t do something.  Stop it.  Here is what people say to me “I’d love to come to yoga, but I’m not flexible.”  People.  Get to yoga.  It’s not about being flexible.  I also hear “I can’t do that pose.  I’m not ever going to be able to do that.”  Guess what.  That’s what I thought about forearm stand a year ago, only it made me mad to think that way.  So I did it.  Make your list of things you think you can’t do.  Look over it and pick one to work on that you really want to go for!
  5. When was the last time you felt great?  Like you got off an exercise machine and were like woo.  I did it.  How about something as simple as mani/pedi day?  Whatever you have done recently that made you feel good about yourself, your abilities and what you can do, never think “I don’t have money for that.” because that is something you need to keep in your life.  Think to yourself, I love the way I always have access money to pay for yoga classes.  << yes this is my thought, but insert yours.
  6. Being scared doesn’t have to be a bad thing.  It could be that you are on the brink of something exciting and new, so take a deep breath.  Visualize what happens after the speech is over, the deal is signed, the leap is made.  Wow.  That rush.  That feeling.   The thought of getting through something that scared you, but not giving up.  It means you are alive!  Even the most confident people go through this.
  7. Think about yourself a year from now.  Where do you want to be?  What would it be like if you didn’t step out on faith?  Would you be in the same place?  Likely.  What about the future you who tries new things, make new friends, stands up in a crowd and gives a speech.  Completes that scary yoga training at a certain age when mostly young folks do that…and completes it while in pain, but grows stronger each day.  Whatever it is.  Grin.  Feel the love.  You deserve it.

I struggled for years against the grain.  Let the pain take over and when I was finally ready to grow my self-confidence again, I almost said no.  but there was this tiny little bubble of excitement as I visualized the end result.  That’s when I knew it would be worth it.  The end result was worth more to me than the lack of self-confidence, fear of failure, or anything else trying to control my life.  Only I could control the end results.  And I did.  What if you could control your results as well?  Would you try? I do have 2 options for wellness coaching or a support group right from your own home here on the blog.  See the top tab “Work with me” or Head|Heart|Health Club for more.

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Body Image and Yoga…3 Reasons to Ignore the Mirror!

Happy International Day of Yoga my friends.  After one full year of teaching yoga, wow, I can honestly say that my body image has changed, but I still work on it daily!  In 2010, you are welcome to use the side search on the blog and read all about that year, but that was the year that everything started to attack me.  Autoimmune changed my life…and I don’t know if I will ever really accept it, but I have learned how to control it and that was a huge relief.

That being said, several changes happened to my body during the last 5 years that were not there before.  I found out I had fibrocystic breasts, and while it’s never a fun topic, I am linking it to my blog post on what happened that year and how I found out.  So I am going to be honest, my body image was not good around the time I came back to yoga due to pain, years of invisible diseases playing a game with me, plus more.  In some of my previous posts, I honestly thought I was writing in a positive way as I always laughed at myself; however, going back and reading now, I see that I was not fooling anyone.

I was in severe pain for so long that it was a deep path I had carved into my brain.  It was well-worn, so naturally I didn’t notice when my self-esteem went down the same path.  Why is it that your friends don’t say the things you need to hear?  Don’t be that friend who just lets your friend continue down this path.  Set the path on fire so they have to find a new way.

My new path was yoga.  Yoga became my saving grace.  When my anxiety from the countless doctor’s appointments was high as I waited on new tests, I would go to yoga.  At first, I cared what people thought of me in my yoga clothes.  I was not able to do all the things other people could…but I went to restorative yoga anyway.

What did I learn from this class?  I will tell you lessons that I learned which can’t be taught from a mirror.

3 Reasons to Ignore the Mirror:

  1. The mirror doesn’t tell you how beautiful you are to other people.  This is serious.  It reflects back your insecurities.  When you look in the mirror, you might see tired eyes, lines, and saggy skin.  When your friend sees you do a pose in yoga class for the first time that you have working on for a few months, they see your natural inner beauty.  I am telling you I know this to be true.  I have witnessed it in my friends who were afraid to come to yoga.  You might not even see how you glow, but I do.  As your teacher, I send you so much love and light during class.  Never once thinking of what you can’t do at all.  I have been there my friend.
  2. The mirror is actually supposed to be a tool.  Yup.  Just a thing to use for alignment in postures.  It is not there to judge us as that’s our job.  Do you ever stop in mid-thought and think to yourself “What if my daughter, sister, friend does this to herself?”  Would you allow others to speak so badly about themselves as you do in your head?  No matter the woman, no matter how you talk to yourself in your head, the answer is always I would never want anyone else to talk to themselves like this.  Seriously.  Ask a friend.  My group of sisters, not related, but from all cultures, meet regularly and we have said this many times.
  3. The mirror reflects the light around us, but not inside us.  Remember that the next time you are not going to yoga class because of how you “look” in the mirror or in yoga clothes or in blah, blah or until you lose x number of pounds.  Seriously remember this.  Because through yoga, I have learned to steady my mind, open my heart and come back to the breath.  If I miss yoga for too long, or don’t go for myself as I am the teacher, ha, if I don’t have that time to do the inner reflection, yes, hell yes, the outer reflection can look ugly to me.  I absorb others energy at times and if I don’t get it out through the experience of yoking myself back to the present moment, this breath, this body as Rolf Gates would say, “The real payoff of a yoga practice, I came to see, is not a perfect handstand or a deeper forward bend—it is the newly born self that each day steps off the yoga mat and back into life.”   

Each time I leave practice I am whole again my friends.  I have then collected all the pieces of my soul that seemed scattered and I feel new again.  Come to yoga my friends.  The mirror can’t possibly tell you how it feels.

Rolf GatesWant to learn new yoga poses in 3 different ways?  A break-down of poses for your body?  Check out the Head|Heart|Health Club

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5 Signs You are Being Treated Like a Doormat

You always say yes.  Even when it’s inconvenient timing or you are about to eat dinner.  Your friend “needs” you yet again or your partner asks you to do this one little thing he or she just doesn’t have time to do.  You might even be the go-to person at work…working long after hours, because the boss just knows that you will say yes.  Yes, sure I will do this.

What are the signs?

  1. You try to have a good nature about everything…so it gets used.  Because you naturally want something great to happen for your friend, they ask you to do more things like that.  Plan an outing, sure.  Keep their kids all day?  Why not.  You were only going to relax from exhaustion.  Pay for everything because they always forget their money <<< wait.  Big sign.  Big.  Let’s split this bill?  But they ordered lobster, 2 martinis and a flaming desert brought to the table by a monkey wearing a fez.  You ordered water and a salad.  Say no to splitting the bill.
  2. What you do is clearly not appreciated...in fact, they act surprised if you mention they asked you to do x, y, z for them last weekend so you can’t right now.  They do not reciprocate at all, nor will they ever.  Never.  Be honest with yourself.  How is this making you feel right now?  Are you beating yourself up for being so nice…and feeling used right now?  Write down your thoughts about the last time someone used you.
  3. One set of rules for them…another for you.  This one is huge.  I had an acquaintance, I thought she was a friend actually, but I know better now, who said that a few things I did were not okay.  If I made an observation for example, I was automatically judging OR gossiping.  But she could turn around and say “Oh look at so and so.  Umm.  I just don’t like them….what do you think <<<” At that time, and that time only, I could answer.  This borders on “policing” your behavior.  Being told what you can and can’t do.  It would be okay for her to act this way, but not me.  Snapping at you in front of adults, yet had you done the same thing, you would have heard about it.  This is setting limitations on what you can do, but they think it doesn’t apply to them.  This is manipulation in a friendship or relationship and it is wrong.
  4. Being treated this way makes you feel isolated and alone.  How you feel about this treatment is often ignored as well…but you are not alone.  You should not feel ashamed to speak out on someone who likes to use double standards in a relationship or friendship.  They have the do as I say not as I do attitude, but clearly you are starting to see this.  Get out now.  Go to counseling, therapy, write about it, but leave and don’t feel bad.  This is NOT about you.  It’s about them.  All about them.  They will continue to manipulate your feelings and try to turn it around so it is your fault.  It isn’t.
  5. They rarely contact you first…unless they need something.  In any type of relationship, whether it is home, friendship, relationship, work, or family, the only contact you get is when they need something.  I am learning to put up better barriers against this, but this is a big sign to me that I am not important.  They are too busy to listen to you, contact you, etc, but the moment they need something, the story changes.  My ex-sister-in-law comes to mind right now as well as a few others who are no longer in my life.  But I wouldn’t hear from that girl unless she wanted to bash my brother or have me babysit.  Period.  That was it for our entire “friendship”.  When I was really ill, she called me.  To ask me for a favor.  Didn’t know I was bad off.  Didn’t ever ask.  Not once.  That was the last time she called because I finally told her that I knew she only called me for 2 reasons and never once in 7 years asked me how I was doing.

How to handle it now.

  1. Talk to them first.  If you don’t you only have yourself to blame.
  2. If talking doesn’t improve anything at all, use distance.
  3. If distance doesn’t work as well as you’d like, make yourself completely unavailable to them for a very long time.
  4. If all else fails, leave the relationship or friendship so that you can make room for new people in your life who truly value you, your gifts and what you have to offer others.
  5. Start your own self-care routines that truly focus on your wellnessreserves

Want more help?  See the Work With Me tab as my Closed Group frequently does lots of work around setting up safe boundaries.

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How to Create Meaningful Female Friendships

Because we do this and pose ^^^

“Oh my God, Becky. Look at her butt.”  Have no fear, that’s just some lyrics to Baby Got Back.  However, could it have been you or your friends commenting on another woman’s body at one time in your life?  The answer to this question is yes.  Yes.  Let’s be honest with each other.  We have all said or even thought something we regretted.  It is part of the human experience. 

I am going to be honest.  The first time I look at photos of myself, I usually cringe.  I don’t know why, but my guess is that pesky thing known as “karmic programming” which I will get to in a moment.  But when we notice these thoughts and feelings about other people, we have to wonder are we reflecting something back about ourselves we don’t like?  Then we have to dig deeper into our karmic programming, which is a history that has been passed down through the generations of how we feel about ourselves or how we view our bodies, etc.  Here is my example…and it’s just honest reflection, but in the south, women seem to dress up, wear make-up, and diet more than other places.  I could be wrong, but it is what I have observed.  The girls I went to school with were very concerned about appearance and hair, my Lord, was everything.

So to break out of that way of thinking, or programming if you will, requires lots of pausing and reflection that as teenagers, we just really don’t have.  In college, we might have a bit more, but as mothers, oh as mothers you would think we would know how hard it has been.  Sometimes this is not true.  So in order for all women to benefit from breaking this cycle of thoughts, we have to try to speak better, think better and build better relationships with the women around us.  We have to watch how we speak to ourselves and how we speak to other women…even if it’s in our heads my sisters.

How to Create Meaningful Friendships:

  1. Avoid feeding into the negative body image feelings that most women have.  This is the hardest one, so I started with it.  This weekend at a conference, we were asked to turn to the woman next to us and tell them what we saw in their eyes, their faces, and write it on these heart-shaped mirrors.  The woman next to me was sparkling, but because of my skills, I knew she didn’t think so.  I also saw her beautiful, vulnerable eyes.  She was an international woman, a woman who has her own business, but had just said to me, I usually don’t take my sweater off because of my arms.  The first thought that came in to my head as I turned to look at her was how dazzling she was.  Just pure love in her eyes, but such vulnerability that as I told her she was beautiful and dazzling, we both started crying.  Know that as you feel vulnerable, so does the woman you are friends with.
  2. Embrace differences and allow for growth.  Where your friendships are right now, in this moment, is not where they were 6 years ago.  Hopefully that is a good thing.  However, if they are in the exact same place as 6 years ago, and you are having the same conversations about the same things, ask yourself if you are feeling fulfilled in this friendship or is this just a “surface” level type of friendship where you don’t feel connected.  The surface level friendships just don’t last usually because they will always hold something back.  A deeper friendship should strengthen with time and feel different…like you have grown roots and might even be connected.  As you reach for that connection, test out your answers.  Do you feel comfortable with the entire truth in this friendship?  If the answer is yes, or even hell yes, I’d tell her anything and she just gets me, then you are a lucky sister.  We can find those friends, and when we do, we need to hold on.
  3. Don’t listen to others…feed your own soul.  Sometimes, there are those who are jealous.  They look at the surface and make nasty comments.  Did you see her outfit?  She needs to lose weight.  She acts so ridiculous.  Why is she so happy all the time?  These comments are usually a reflection of the person making them.  Point of fact for me…I sometimes have gotten a few nasty comments from people I don’t know on my FB page.  I can always tell as soon as I read their comments that it is a reflection of something they are going through and has no bearing on my life what so ever.  Delete.  Do not engage.  I know it’s difficult, I AM A SCORPIO.  Trust me.  However, I say a few nice things under my breath about how difficult it must be to carry so much judgement, hate, and malice and I really hope they think about how it would feel if they were being open, honest and vulnerable to sayyyy 100,000 people, and I let it go.

Remind yourself to do a mental check-in on how you are feeling during the day and if a friend is having a particularly rough week, try to be gentle.  No, it’s not easy.  Will it be worth it?  I think so.  Chances are, whatever is coming up for them feels awful, and they will notice it as well.  Re-direct on what is going right for them this week, or how great they look in the color whatever…and know that they are sometimes in the ego, and not in the heart.

It takes a long time and many hours to re-direct and shift our thoughts away from tearing each other down, or ourselves down, but it can be done and more meaningful friendships can be born out of this soul-searching experience.

vulnerabilities

 

3 Ways to Boost Your Self-esteem

Self-care

 

Hey friends…I have just spent the day working on a workbook that is available to all my clients and it deals with exploring your self-esteem.

What is self-esteem?

Self-esteem reflects a person’s overall subjective emotional evaluation of his or her own worth…so as my husband was looking over my shoulder, he asked me about the word “worthiness” and said don’t you mean “worthlessness”?  Ack!  No.  I certainly did not.  I meant worthiness.  I was developing a way to reflect on our feelings and where they might stem from.  Nearly everyone experiences fluctuations in their self-esteem and the way they feel about themselves or how they look, but sometimes it can be hard to see the world and your place in it through a positive reflection instead of these negative thoughts that take up too much space in your head.  So tonight, I wanted to share with you three ways you can boost your self-esteem.

3 Ways to boost your self-esteem

  1. The JOY list.  Make a list of all the places, people and things that give you joy.  If you have a favorite outfit that gives you a boost write that down.  If there is an activity that lights you up like painting, drawing or yoga, write that as well.  On days you are having a hard time, refer to your JOY list.  That’s right.  If you think a day is going to be particularly stressful, oh I don’t know like a review at work day, wear your favorite outfit.  Just feeling better will raise your vibration as you go into the meeting.  This truly helps others around you take notice of the energy you are putting out there.
  2. Replace negative with positive.  I know you think this is easier said than done because I hear that excuse all the time, but the truth is, it is easy.  Pay attention to your self talk and think about how you would want your children to talk to themselves.  Negative begets negative.  Take those unfounded negative thoughts and start to make a note on how what you are thinking is untrue.  Maybe a friend said that they needed to lose weight that day at lunch and it got you thinking about that.  They keep talking about it all the time, and you just start to feel the same way.  Recognize that that’s their shit.  <<< yes, I said shit, but it’s true.  It’s theirs and they need to own that.  Start re-framing your thoughts and perhaps help your friend to do the same if you would like.  It’s not your burden…it’s theirs.  And the truth is, if someone else repeatedly expects you to carry their burden, it can be a negative feeling.
  3. Self-care routines need to be in place.  This is essential.  I was working with a client and I asked her about the last time she took a bath.  I know that sounds like a routine question, but it isn’t.  She said “A bath??  The kids take baths.  I don’t have time.”  <<< BINGO.  You do have time.  Let me come over and pull a Moonstruck on you…okay, I won’t (for those too young to get the reference, she slaps her boyfriend and says snap out of it.).  I changed my entire way of thinking about self-care in the last two years and I want you to understand how critical it is.  Self-care practices are all those activities that we engage in to improve our overall sense of wellbeing. Self-care strategies work toward improving the many aspects that make up who we are, including our physical, relational, mental, spiritual, and emotional health…now imagine you don’t have these in place.  Exercise, sleep, hot baths and journaling are just a few of the things I talk about with clients.  I could write a book on this alone…but that’s for later.  For tonight, just remember, you are responsible for the energy you bring to the table my friends.  Take care of you.

energyCome join us in creating our own energy.  Head|Heart|Health Club.

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How to Build Self-esteem…

You recall a time you had self-esteem…but it seems to be so long ago that your beliefs in yourself and your abilities have slipped away.  You let a mirror, comments, or other things make you feel less than your actual worth, but self-esteem is actually how much WE like ourselves.  Not the scale.  The mirror.  That person over there on Twitter.  <<< they have no bearing on your life, yet they do have one thing.  A chisel.  They chip away at you daily until you forget that you actually like you.

An example for me would be when I started going to yoga years ago.  I was excited about it…I bought new yoga pants and signed up for hot yoga.  I remember the mirrored walls.  MIRRORS were everywhere.  Sweaty people, tiny clothes, and mirrors.  I ermmm am not exactly smallish up top, so I find I have to basically bundle those bad boys down to try and even do yoga.  But the mirror.  I swear it was a fun house mirror and my boobs looked grossly out of proportion with everyone else in their awesome yoga tops…sigh.  Not a soul stopped me from doing yoga in that class.  They didn’t point or scream Dolly Parton is up in here.  But in my head they did.  I lost my train of thought every time I went to yoga there.  I am totally against mirrors in yoga class now.  Ha…but I am not the only woman who feels this way.

What changed?

I have been through so much, that I was not going to let all that stuff get in my way ever again.  In order to start building your self-esteem, you have to decide that it is your life, and each moment you delay doing what you want because of someone else, is a moment you lose to them.

Tips to build you up:

  1. Just like in yoga, set an intention.  Before you go to bed, write a love note for yourself and put it on your bathroom mirror.  YES, this is a trick that works.  You get to decide how you want to start your day.  When you wake up, focus on that intention.  Today I will feel beautiful.  Today I will get things done.  Whatever it is, it’s for you.  No one else.
  2. Ask yourself, are you being true to you?  If you are living according to what others want you to do, be, wear, act, etc.  how are you being true to you?  Act in harmony with your inner self.  If you don’t know what that looks like, start thinking about things you like that make you happy.  Just for you.
  3. Change who you are around.  <<< this one is necessary  I know how hard this one is.  Trust me, I do.  But if you have friends who constantly let you down, leave you hanging, and make you feel like less of a person for any reason what so ever, it is really time for a change…especially if they won’t change or can’t see what they are doing to you.  Negative attracts more negative…and the energy they put out there is actually harmful to you.  Avoid people who complain constantly, but don’t do anything to change their life.  Be with those who lift you up.
  4. Change your eating habits.  Don’t eat because you are mad, sad or depressed.  Eat because you are hungry.  Yes, this one is hard.  I know it is.  But drink plenty of water, get fresh fruits and veggies, hot tea that makes you feel good, and stay away from processed foods or binge eating.  It only makes you feel worse afterwards.
  5. Create your space with no comparisons allowed.  Back to the yoga metaphor, but seriously.  You can be doing “an eclectic celebration of the dance! You do Fosse, Fosse, Fosse! You do Martha Graham, Martha Graham, Martha Graham! Or Twyla, Twyla, Twyla! Or Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd! Or Madonna, Madonna, Madonna!… but you keep it all inside.”  Over there on your mat.  Who said yoga has to be boring, stereotypical and the same?  No one said me.  Do not compare yourself to whatever is going on over there >>> on her mat.  Unless she is actually doing the above.
  6. Help others feel good about themselves.  Give someone a genuine compliment…and I bet there will be a ripple effect.  Building someone up feels better than tearing them down…even if they have done that to you.  This part might be hard…baby steps.  But you can start with your friends, and then if you do encounter Negative Nancy, sorry Nancy you are actually quite sweet and never negative at all, ha, but anyway, if you do encounter someone like that, be prepared with…a compliment!  Ha take that.
Self-esteem
***Check back on October 3rd for new TABS at the top.*** Big surprise! 

 

Motivational Monday…

Dr.Squote

So, tonight, I want you to listen to this first.  Really listen to it.  Clear your mind.  Then press play.

“Onward up many a frightening creek, though your arms may get sore and your sneakers may leak. Oh! The places you’ll go!”   ~Dr. Seuss

This is actually dedicated to a tiny person I know who can, and will, do great things once she believes in herself.  Kid, you’ll move mountains.  I love you.

Home is where the Yoda is…

Yoda might be a fictional character, but he is still one bad ass dude.  I happen to love all things Yoda.  I want you to think back to the first time you saw him enter the scene on the planet Dagobah.  A small, odd-looking old creature who appears to be a little demented hobbles over to Luke and starts playing with his things.  It cracks me up.  I often think that most people are underestimated.  Not only by others, but they underestimate their own abilities as well.  One of my favorite Yoda-isms is “Do or do not…there is no try.”

In order to be more like Yoda, you have to change your way of thinking.  How many times do you say you will “try” to do something.  Honestly think about it.  Either commit to it or don’t.  It takes a lot of practice and hard work in order to change your way of thinking.  Let’s not forget your emotions as well.  Remember when Luke got angry…“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”  Wise counsel Yoda.  Fear and anger never did any good.  You have to make up your mind to do something, and stick to it.  Let’s say you want to lose weight.  Start with a small goal and work towards it.  Don’t give up the second you put on an extra pound.  Instead, focus on what you are doing.  Is there a snack you are eating late at night that is not helping you meet your goal?  Is there a soda, hint, you are drinking that you really could give up?  Try it for a week and see if it makes a difference.

The next great Yoda quote involves self-esteem.  “Size matters not.  Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you?”  Do not let your physical limitations get you down.  You were born that way and you need to embrace it.  It takes many types of people to make up this world.  Don’t forget that.  Focus on the positive and when the negative comes creeping back in, stop and take a deep breath.  Exude confidence from within and be like Yoda.

“When 900 years old you reach, look as good you will not.”  ~Yoda