Top 12 tips for a Successful and Productive 2018

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Image Credit: Pixabay.com

Welcome back!  I trust that your Christmas celebrations went well.  We’ve all opened our gifts, shared a few laughs and got a little time to hopefully reflect on how truly blessed we’ve been in 2017.

As you all know, the approach of the New Year 2018 draws nearer and nearer with each day and this is typically the time when we make ‘promises’ to ourselves and sometimes others about what we’re doing to do differently and what we’re hoping to change.

I propose that we take a different approach to this age-old practice and instead of making promises aka  resolutions let’s make some proactive decisionsThe truth is a promise provides mental comfort but proactive decision-making can provide actual results.

So how are we going to do this?  Let’s take a look.

  1. For starters, let’s not set unrealistic expectations.  It’s not fair to ourselves when we set unrealistic expectations. Do yourself a favour PUSH yourself but don’t BREAK yourself.
  2. List the areas of our lives we want to improve on  be it our health, finances, relationships, jobs, etc.
  3. Make a plan for each area that actively treats with the areas of our lives we want to see blossom or transform.  List step by step how we will go about this transformation.  Example, for health a plan we may consider reviewing our eating habits, getting active through exercise or starting a sport, getting a medical checkup.  This may require doing some research and implementing real change in how we currently care for our bodies.
  4. We have to be willing to do the work to get the results we want.  Change is never easy but it is often necessary for us to improve and foster greater happiness in our lives.
  5. Be your own cheerleader.  Don’t rely solely on the support of others for your success.  You have to want to succeed for yourself.  It is this burning desire that  will push you to succeed even when things around you change.
  6. Stick with the plan. We may get distracted from time to time and may even fall off the wagon completely.  Don’t waste time feeling guilty.  Make a decision from now not a promise that YOU WILL not accept failure this time.  YOU WILL get back on track and make things right not because of a promise you made but rather because YOU ARE worth it!
  7. Distance yourself from negativity – that includes negative people and negative thinking. These are some common elements to failure. Negativity is not cheering for our success the sooner we can see that and take corrective action our lives can turn around for the better.
  8. Be flexible.  We must be willing to adapt to whatever change may occur.  We may meet and exceed our goal likewise we may have to alter or modify certain aspects of it to get the best outcome.  Be open-minded about the process. Nothing is set in stone.  The only unbreakable aspect of this must be our determination to see this through. 🙂
  9. Believe in yourself and your ability to do this.
  10. Don’t allow your fears to keep you stuck in the past.  In 2018, take those fears and use them as fuel for your success.
  11. Acknowledge your achievements no matter how small and reward yourself for a job well done.
  12. Lastly, never give up! For when we do, we truly fail.

A special thank you to each of you who read and support my blog. May 2018 bring us fresh ideas, clarity of mind and spirit, prosperity, joy, love, good health and happiness. May wisdom and understanding never be a stranger in our lives.

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Thank you for stopping by.  Have a wonderful week and bright New Year! 🙂

It’s Time…

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It’s time and you know it!

You know the feeling but you can’t quite explain it

That feeling you get when you’ve reached your limit

That feeling that empowers you

But you let your second thoughts crowd out what you should do

Don’t look at me like that, you know I’m talking to YOU 🙂

 

It’s time so NO more delaying

We’ve been going round and round doing the same things

Then wondering why we can’t see any change

Constantly turning the same pages in our lives over and over

Haven’t you noticed we’re getting older?

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It’s time to make our move

We’re done procrastinating about what we’re going to do

It’s time to get ACTIVE and be PROACTIVE

In the things that we want and need to do

We have to stand up and start truly walking in our own shoes

We don’t have time to sit singing the blues

 

It’s time so you choose

Standing still we have so much to lose

So make this promise to yourself

No more sitting idly by on the shelf

If you don’t start now you’ll never forgive yourself.

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If not now, then when?

Who knows how or when it will all end?

To pursue your dream – you don’t have to be a king or queen

Besides, only in trying would you have seen

How possibly different your life could have been.

Think about it, maybe it’s time!

 

Tired of all the ‘would have’ and ‘could have’ thoughts. The reality is, in life there comes a time when we just have to stop making excuses for ourselves and others and just meaningfully go after what we claim to want and desire.

Anything worth getting requires effort and hard work.

Thank you for stopping by.  Make today a great one. 🙂

 

Expectation

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Expectation without action is just a desire or a dream.

For expectations to become reality – effort, persistence and hard work MUST step forward.

So let’s try PUSHING the door and if that does not work we’ll try PULLING it!  Either way standing still will get us NOTHING.

Boldly pursue your dream if that will make you truly happy.  Whatever you choose to do,  don’t waste time standing by the door hoping and waiting for someone else to allow you entry.  They would probably be too busy chasing their own dreams to help you find YOURS.

The good news is, you have a DREAM and that is more than some people can say. All you need to do now is actively see where this desire or passion will take YOU. 🙂 So be proactive rather than reactive.

Make this weekend a great one! Thank you for stopping by. 🙂

 

 

Where is your focus?

Focus.

Focus is a powerful word.  If channeled inwardly in a positive way we can do amazing things and can become the amazing people we were meant to be.

If re-directed toward others especially in a negative way – it can consume you.  Likewise, if you take that energy and direct it internally in a negative way by being highly critical and negative about yourself it can consume you as well.

Focus requires time, energy, effort, dedication and determination.

Use that mental power and asset to your advantage.  Use it to strengthen your core values or create new ones (if needed).  Don’t believe or give ear to the negative stuff people say.

  • You have the power to make things right!
  • You have what it takes to improve your situation!
  • The only story that is going to keep you back is NOT what people say about you but what you believe about YOURSELF!

I don’t have a crystal ball and no I don’t know what the future holds.  However, what I do know is what I want and don’t want for myself.  If you can say the same thing – then all you need to do is STAY FOCUSED and go after what you want.

Believe in yourself. We CAN do anything if we just put our minds to it.

Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

Find and develop your own talents

Once upon a time there lived two sisters Sarah and Samantha both in their early twenties who lived in the country side.  Sarah was a very quiet person and did not have many friends but she was happy. She found joy in her paintings and writing poetry. She loved her sister and often wished she could be more like her fun and outgoing with lots of friends.

Image Credit: Pixels.com

Samantha was the total opposite.  She always liked being the centre of attention and was very popular.  She was secretly angry and jealous of Sarah because she did not have her talents.  She would always be negative with Sarah in hopes of discouraging her.

Their mother always told them growing up to love and support each other but Samantha always feared that if she did that Sarah would just get better and better at her talents and would eventually go off to the big city and leave her there all alone.

Sarah felt most creative near the water – the river was her favourite place to paint and write her poetry.  Today was no different as Sarah set off to her favourite place.  The birds were chirping, the bees were buzzing and the air was fresh and clean.  Sarah found her spot under the huge cherry blossom tree and began painting taking periodic deep breaths trying to take in the beauty of the place and centre her mind as inspiration was everywhere.

She was half way into her painting when she heard a car pull up and stop on the road behind her.  When she looked up she noticed a tall, handsome young man waving to her as he approached her.  She had never seen him before and was a bit concerned.  As he got closer she could hear his deep, strong voice, “Hello Miss, can you please tell me where Sarah Joline lives?”

“Sarah Joline, why do you want to know?” asked Sarah even more concerned that he was looking for her.  “It’s a private matter, do you know where I can find her it is urgent? My name is Adam, by the way.”  Sarah smiled and replied, “I am Sarah Joline, what is this about?”

Adam was happy that he had found her so easily and was pleasantly surprised at how beautiful she was.  He reached into his coat and handed her a white letter sized envelope.  “What is this about ?” Sarah asked again holding the envelope in her hand convinced that Adam had the wrong person. He then said, “You’ll see. It was a pleasure meeting Miss Joline I look forward to seeing you again soon.” He then turned and walked back to his car and drove off with a smile on his face.

Sarah was scared, nervous and excited all at the same time.  She was too scared to open the envelope herself and quickly packed up and headed home.  When she got home the first person she saw was her mother.  Her mother took one look at her and knew something was troubling her.  “What’s wrong Sarah?” asked her mother same time Samantha walked in from spending time with her friends.

“I met this really handsome guy down by the river and he gave me an envelope because he was looking for me.  Can you believe it?” said Sarah.

“Yeah right, it’s just her crazy imagination again?” said Samantha. “Be quiet Samantha. Let me see the envelope Sarah,” said mother.  Sarah handed her the envelope and sat on the step anxiously waiting for her to read it.  Samantha walked off toward the kitchen pretending not to be interested but stood behind the door listening attentively as her mother read out the letter.

” Dear Miss Sarah Joline,

You’ve been selected to take part in the National Art Scholarship Programme based on your submission and recommendation from your teacher Mrs. Jane Oliver.

Should you choose to accept please be advised that this is a two-year programme and you would be required to move to New York city.  We will be providing room and board for you.  You would be given an internship opportunity that would allow you to earn a stipend while here.

Please note that we must receive your decision within the week.

We look forward to meeting you and working with you.

Kind Regards,

Mr. John Hamshire
Director”

Sarah was speechless.  She knew that her teacher was very fond of her work and always encouraged her to explore and develop her talents further but she did not believe her work was good enough.  This letter however, was proof that her work was more than good enough.

Her mother cried tears of joy and began hugging and kissing her on her cheeks so much that her face was now red and numb. Her mother looked at her with so much pride and told her that she always knew she would be great in whatever she did.  “We have to prepare there is so much to be done before you leave,”  said her mother.

“You’re going to let me go?” asked Sarah. Her mother looked at her confused and asked, “Don’t you want to go?  This is an opportunity for you to do what you love.”  Sarah sighed and responded, “What about you and Samantha? Samantha is the only sister I have.  I would be alone in New York.  I know our relationship is not ideal lately but I love and forgive her. I know deep down she loves me too.”

Samantha heard everything. At first when she heard the acceptance letter she was furious that Sarah was leaving and that her talents were not just good but excellent.  She also heard what Sarah said and for the first time in a long time she felt sad and ashamed at how she had treated her sister who despite everything she had done loved her still and was genuinely concerned about her.

She saw her reflection in the stainless steel cookie jar on the counter and realised that she did not recognise who she had become because she had allowed jealousy and envy to consume her.  She wept uncontrollably as she sank to her knees in the kitchen.

Both her mother and sister heard this and ran in to see what was wrong. They hugged her and she looked Sarah in the eyes and apologised for being mean and jealous of her and asked for her forgiveness.  Sarah forgave her and told her that she loved her.  Samantha knew it was true and confessed that she loved her also.

She also went on to tell her the truth about how wonderful her paintings and poetry were and that she should go to New York.  “Sarah you are a great sister and talented artist and I am proud to call you my sister.”

This brought tears to both Sarah and her mother’s eyes. After that day, Samantha and Sarah grew closer and became the best of friends always supporting and encouraging each other to be their best.

Samantha eventually found her own talent.  All this time she thought she was not good at anything – turns out she was a great musician and eventually went on to do great things.  She realised that she was wasting time being angry and jealous of her sister’s talents when she had her own talent that she was not developing because she was too busy being envious and almost lost her opportunity to find happiness within herself.

Sarah learnt that she needed to believe in herself and her abilities more.  She was also grateful that she did not give up on her sister because now they have a beautiful relationship.  Sarah was happy with who she was and who she was becoming and allowed herself to explore other opportunities for happiness outside herself and her work as she and Adam eventually became very close.

In the end, both sisters agreed that sometimes you need to create your own happiness. Don’t waste time comparing yourself to others, focus on developing your own talents because it is there you will find true happiness.

Image Credit: Pixabay.com

 

Helplessness

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For the past two days I have experienced some technical difficulties with my blog that had me going through a phase of helplessness.  This feeling  triggered other emotions such as frustration, annoyance and anger.

Some of you may know the feeling, that sense of there’s nothing you can do to fix the problem you’re facing no matter how hard you try.   That feeling you get when the people around you can’t seem to understand or fix the problem you’re going through.  The feeling of helplessness can pop up at any time and at any stage in your life leaving you stressed.

In my most recent dilemma, I sought technical support from various avenues because I was not sure where the problem I was facing had originated from – talk about frustrating! At one point, I was locked out and unable to use my blog and this had me very concerned to say the least.

I was eventually reconnected and this made me happy again.  I did not realise just how much this blog meant to me until the fear of possibly losing it.  It is an extension of myself that I am now able to share with people all over the world and I am very grateful for it.

That feeling of helplessness that I experienced humbled me because it reminded me that I do not have control over everything no matter how hard I try.  The good news is, I don’t give up easily!  At various points during this period of restlessness, uncertainty and fear – I had to talk myself down emotionally.

I had to take a deep breath okay a few deep breaths 🙂 to calm my thoughts and my emotions so I could think straight and not let my emotions continue to run wild.  After all, behaving like a crazy woman would not have resolved my technical issues so I had to be analytical, diplomatic and do some trouble shooting of my own until I got the results I needed.

Thankfully, it paid off but it was not easy.  I had to be patient, I had to trust and rely on someone else to do their job and do it well.  This experience if nothing else has reinforced for me a couple of things:

    1. Helplessness can only be overcome with perseverance.
    2. I will continue to back up my data regularly.
    3. Knowledge is power – where you don’t have the answers – look for it!  Seeking to understand the various aspects of my blog prior to these events made it easier for me to understand and follow the instructions given.
    4. Patience is key and thus doing things in anger and hastiness should be avoided when possible.
    5. Be your own emotional coach. Take deep breaths and clear your mind don’t let your negative emotions drive your actions. When no one else is around the only person you have is YOU.
    6. Don’t focus too much on the problem –focus your efforts and energy on finding solutions.
    7. It’s okay to not have all the answers.
    8. It’s wise to get help.
    9. Sitting back and doing nothing is definitely NOT the answer.
    10. See the situation as an opportunity to learn.

 

It feels good to be back. Thanks for stopping by.  🙂