Permission to show yourself a little love

Self-care isn’t necessarily an elaborate ritual that you have to perform every day. Self-care, in its purest form, is giving your body what it needs when it needs it in order to perform at your very best. Knowing what your body needs involves staying tuned in to the subtle signals it gives you throughout the day. This means staying present and checking in with yourself often.

What is self-care?

You know how the flight attendant instructs you to secure your own oxygen mask before assisting others in case of an emergency? Self-care is kind of like that. It is taking care of yourself so you can perform better for everyone else. If you helped everyone else with their masks first, you would pass out and be unable to help as many people as you would if you helped yourself first. Taking the time for self-care is not selfish, it is essential to keep you performing at your very best.  Continue reading “Permission to show yourself a little love”

Positivity for Pessimists

People move toward positivity, plain and simple. Everyone likes a positive person, someone who is upbeat and cheerful, who rolls with the punches, and has a can-do attitude. So, what if you aren’t that type of person? Are you doomed to walk the streets alone, to spend your life as a solitary, cut off from the enjoyment of meaningful relationships?

I used to think that positive people were obnoxious. Think Legally Blonde: I was the stuck up, grey law school girl looking down my nose at the pink, bubbly chick getting it done. So when I started reading all of the evidence indicating positive people have a longer health span, are healthier in general, and are more productive I had to overcome my own dour disposition and admit that not all positive people are fake, silly, or stupid. Maybe, if this positivity thing has so many perks, I might even like to (gulp) become one of the happy people.

Is positivity something a person just has a talent for or can it be learned? I can tell you from experience that positivity can be learned. Even the most cynical person can learn to be positive with the right amount of effort. Here’s how you start: Continue reading “Positivity for Pessimists”

Why your life isn’t good enough…yet

It occurred to me the other day that I will never have what I want–what I am striving for–until I become utterly happy with what I already have.

This revelation came to me last week while I unpacked my “sub-standard” vehicle on our first day vacationing at the lake. I found myself lamenting how old, scuffed up, and uncomfortable the car was. Then I caught myself. Was I really on vacation complaining about what I didn’t have? Talk about not being able to appreciate the beautiful forest for the one ugly tree!

Do I want a new car? Sure. But this one had just carried me and my daughter 864+ miles not including a stop in Minneapolis to see the sights. It has since brought us all the way back home, never once disappointing me, never once letting us down, keeping us safe the whole time. Right now it is sitting out there, covered in bugs and waiting to do whatever is next. It’s overdue for an oil change, unwashed, kind of stinky from our 13 hour road trip, yet ever the reliable mode of transportation. Continue reading “Why your life isn’t good enough…yet”

Vacation Blog: Ways to Be Instantly Happier

I generally walk my talk. One of the things I talk quite a lot about is taking time out for self-care. This includes being present, taking a break from electronics, and giving yourself permission to enjoy downtime. Therefore, I am not working during my vacation this week. This means no original blog. I do, however, have a fantastic one from Anthony Moore on how you can achieve happiness today. I hope you find it valuable.

Want to Be Instantly Happier Than 90% of Other People? Read This Immediately.

by Anthony Moore

This is why most people aren’t happy

Most people only ever give partial attention to the most important areas of their life.

This is why most people:

Happiness isn’t “success;” there are countless “successful” people who live terribly imbalanced and empty lives.

Happiness isn’t achievement, accomplishment, or a state of being you finally “arrive” at. You can never do enough, or the right thing, so that you finally feel like you’re complete.

Happiness is a natural result of doing what you’re supposed to do.

Happiness and fulfillment aren’t easy concepts, but they’re simple. Achieving happiness is a natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals of focus, generosity, and healthy boundaries — all of which you can start doing immediately.

Want to be instantly happier than 90% of people? Then keep reading.

Read more…

Gratitude for the Win: 6 Ways to be More Grateful Every Day

Gratitude is one of my favorite practices. This is because it is a really simple exercise that takes almost no time, but has far-reaching, multi-focal benefits. If you’re only going to do one self-care practice, this one will give you the most bang for your buck. Gratitude turns what you have into enough. It turns a bad day into a fortunate day. It also makes positivity a habit.

David Asprey from Bulletproof says, “I do it because gratitude literally rewires your brain. Even a simple gratitude writing practice builds lasting neural sensitivity to more positive thinking. That means the more you practice gratitude, the more you default to positivity instead of negativity Study after study shows that simple gratitude exercises, like keeping a journal or sharing daily wins with friends or family, can make you happier, more positive, and more emotionally open after just two weeks (1,2,3). The benefits last, too (4), which leads to an overall increase in well-being, making you more resilient to stress (5). That’s a lot of improvement for 10 minutes a day.” Continue reading “Gratitude for the Win: 6 Ways to be More Grateful Every Day”

Get More Done and Feel Better With Meditation

How much more do you get done in a day when you are happy? I’m talking free of stress, free of fear (just another word for stress), and free of anxiety (again, stress). Don’t you feel more willing to get up and get out? When I’m happy, I’m more apt to get my workout done, get the laundry started, clean up the living room, plan fun stuff to do…but when I’m negative I don’t want to do anything. An object in motion tends to stay in motion, an object stuck on the couch in a funk tends to stay on the couch. It’s a cyclical system that feeds back on itself.

How do we break the cycle? I don’t know about you, but I want to feel better and get more done today. In a word: meditation. Now before you think I’m going all new-age kookie-dooks on you, hear me out.

Continue reading “Get More Done and Feel Better With Meditation”

Why I Hate the 4th of July

Don’t get me wrong, I feel patriotic and respectful towards my country. I am not a hater of America. I am a hater of the 4th of July.

Every year my neighborhood turns into a war zone. Despite the fact that we live within the city limits where fireworks are prohibited, people insist on shooting off the noisy, wildfire inducing, messy things. They do it with abandon, without regard to safety, and rarely clean up the resulting debris. Otherwise reasonable, fairly level-headed people turn into crazed pyromaniacs. It isn’t about patriotism, it’s about blowing shit up. Worse, it lasts for a solid week and a half.

Yes, I am a fun hater. Continue reading “Why I Hate the 4th of July”

I Stopped Caring In Order to Become More Compassionate

“Impassivity with regards to the events, brought about by the exterior cause.” —Marcus Aurelius

The other day I made an epic decision. I decided to stop caring so much about everything and everyone around me in order to become more compassionate. I realized that I spent a large amount of my time being frustrated about what people around me were doing and how it affected me. In short, I cared too much.

I cared about people in traffic–you know, the ones who can’t drive; about the other moms; what the other moms thought; what my family thought; about people who made my day difficult–on purpose or by chance; about random rude people; noisy people; annoying people; construction; you get my drift. All of this caring was diminishing my cheerfulness and actually making me quite a sour person. It suddenly occurred to me that if I didn’t care about this stuff, it wouldn’t matter.

This doesn’t mean that I became an unfeeling cynic. Quite the opposite. I realized that by not allowing external events to affect me so deeply, I would actually open myself up to more compassion. Suddenly, the person who was rude to me became someone who was having a really bad day. Because I didn’t care that they were rude to me, I was able to see this clearly. Continue reading “I Stopped Caring In Order to Become More Compassionate”

Working up to working out

How do you cultivate a fitness mindset? It’s something I really struggle with. I know I should get in some healthy movement every day, I just don’t always want to. I know I’m not alone here.

My problem is that my why isn’t strong enough. Even if I find an activity that I like, fitness is such a low priority for me that I easily get caught up in other things and simply forget to do it. Sometimes I intentionally find things to do to justify skipping the treadmill, trail, or the mat. Working out only works if it is convenient in both time and location.

I don’t think I’m alone in saying that my procrastination wins over my daily workout more often than not. Most of my perspective clients mention a lack of time and sufficient motivation to move their bodies. Their aversion to getting their sweat on every day deters them from starting any health program at all. Their can’t game is strong, same as mine. Continue reading “Working up to working out”

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