IT’S THE LAST ONE!

WE ARE IN THE LAST WEEK OF THE LAST MONTH OF THE YEAR! CAN YOU BELIEVE HOW TIME FLIES? THIS WILL BE THE LAST TUESDAY OF 2021. WHILE SOME OF US ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO A NEW YEAR AND NEW POSSIBILITIES, THERE IS SOMETHING TO BE SAID FOR THE TIME WE HAVE LEFT.

WHEN YOU THINK OF THE FACT THAT WE WILL NEVER HAVE ANOTHER TUESDAY IN 2021 AGAIN, IT SOUNDS RATHER FINAL. MY SUGGESTION IS TO SQUEEZE EVERY LAST DROP OF LOVE, JOY AND HAPPINESS OUT OF IT. HOW? BY BEING PRESENT.

THIS MORNING I WAS DRIVING BY MYSELF TO WORK WHEN I HAD ONE OF THOSE MOMENTS WE ALL HAVE. I LOOKED AROUND TO DISCOVER I WAS ALMOST HALFWAY THERE! I SERIOUSLY WONDERED WHO DROVE THE FIRST HALF! DID I MENTION I WAS ALONE IN THE CAR?

WE SO OFTEN GET LOST IN OUR THOUGHTS OR OTHER DISTRACTIONS THAT WE MISS THE JOY OF LIFE AROUND US. WE ARE THINKING ABOUT WHAT WE HAVE TO DO THAT DAY, SOMETHING THAT MIGHT BE TROUBLING US, OR EVEN WHAT WE ARE HAVING FOR DINNER. IN MY CASE, I WAS THINKING ABOUT THE FACT THAT IN 2 WEEKS I’LL BE UNDERGOING OPEN-HEART SURGERY. THE CRAZY PART IS THAT ALL OF THIS OVER-THINKING AND WORRY GETS US NOWHERE.

BEFORE WE KNOW IT, OUR LIFE, MUCH LIKE THE FIRST HALF OF MY COMMUTE, WILL HAVE PASSED US BY UNNOTICED AND UNAPPRECIATED. STARTING TODAY, LET US ENJOY THE LAST WEEK OF THE YEAR TO THE FULLEST. LET US BE TOTALLY PRESENT IN OUR LIVES. WHETHER THAT BE ENJOYING A GOOD CUP OF COFFEE WITH ALL OF OUR SENSES, LISTENING INTENSELY TO OUR PARTNER AND FRIENDS OR SIMPLY NOTICING THE BEAUTY ON OUR MORNING COMMUTE. DO NOT LET THIS WEEK, OR ANY OF YOUR LIFE, PASS BY WITHOUT BEING PRESENT IN IT.

USE THIS WEEK!

THE WEEK BETWEEN CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEARS IS ONE GENERALY FILLED WITH LOTS OF EXHALING AND RELAXATION. DESERVEDLY SO. THE SHOPPING IS DONE. THE CRAZINESS OF THE HOLIDAYS IS WINDING DOWN. TOWARDS THE END OF THE WEEK, SOME PEOPLE BEGIN TO CONTEMPLATE NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS. YOU KNOW, THOSE LOFTY GOALS WE ASPIRE TO IN THE COMING YEAR.

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS ARE VERY GOOD IN AND OF THEMSELVES. IT IS ALWAYS ADMIRABLE TO THINK OF WAYS IN WHICH WE CAN IMPROVE OURSELVES AND OUR LIVES. THE PROBLEM IS MOST OF US JUST WAIT UNTIL A FEW DAYS BEFORE AND CHOOSE SOME RANDOM OR MAYBE EVEN INTENSE GOAL. WE DON’T SPEND MUCH TIME AND THE PLANNING AND THEN ARE SURPRISED WHEN WE HAVE FAILED ALL OF OUR RESOLUTIONS BY FEBRUARY 1ST, IF NOT BEFORE.

THIS YEAR, LET’S DO IT DIFFERENT. SPEND THIS WEEK THINKING OF THE AREAS WE WISH TO IMPROVE IN THE COMING YEAR. DEVELOP NOT ONLY A PLAN FOR HOW TO DO IT, BUT WHAT TO DO IF WE FEEL OURSELVES AND OUR MOTIVATION SLIPPING. ONE OF THE BEST WAYS IS TO COME UP WITH A STRONG ‘WHY’. THE REASON BEHIND WHAT WE WISH TO ACCOMPLISH. LET US WRITE DOWN BOTH WHAT WE STAND TO GAIN BY ACCOMPLISHING IT AS WELL AS WHAT WE STAND TO LOSE IF WE DON’T.

YOU HAVE MORE GIFTS THAN YOU REALIZE

As we had into a weekend that contains holidays for many of us, let us do so with a heart filled with gratitude. Not only for the gifts so thoughtfully given, but to have those in our lives to celebrate with. It is unfortunately true that many of us may be facing our first holiday without a loved one. Still, let us be so grateful we had them in our lives to create such beautiful holiday memories with. Let us savor those memories and allow their spirits to live on.

There are so many things in our lives to be thankful and grateful for that it amounts to a pile of presents under a tree. Here is a great suggestion to help you feel the holiday spirit. This can be done in your head or even out loud. It can be a great new holiday tradition to start with the family.

With each person that is in your life, be they family, friends or coworkers, think of each person and all they bring to your life. Each positive thing is a gift to your sprit. If you list each thing as you think of them, you will realize how truly blessed and abundant you are. If you wish to take it to the next level, write them down and share with that person. Can you imagine the joy they would feel getting a card/email or other message that begins “this holiday, I want to thank you for bringing into my life the gifts of…”

The gifts will be different for everyone. Some will be the gift of laughter. Some people may give you the gift of encouragement. There are people who help with the gift of faith. The lists could be endless. Do this for as many people as you can and you will feel not only like you received a lot of presents this year, but you will feel very grateful and very blessed.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM ALL OF US AT SECRET2ANAMAZINGLIFE.COM TO ALL OF YOU!😀

DON’T FORGET TO DO THIS ONE IMPORTANT THING

We are almost to the end of the week. There are probably goals that you are working hard to achieve. Maybe your efforts are focused on just making it through the week. Although we should focus on thriving instead of surviving, some weeks can be tougher than others. With the holidays, you have not only your regular responsibilities, but additional stress as well. This is why this one activity must be included in every day, no matter how busy you are!

What is this activity that is all so important? Taking time to do at least one thing that makes you happy. Before you start arguing that you’re too busy, or simply don’t have the time, let me explain why this is so important. Taking time to do something that simply brings us joy can go a long way to reduce stress.  By doing so, we help bolster our immune system. Which in today’s world is very crucial. We also take care of our heart. By exposure to prolonged bouts of stress, there are numerous cardiac events that cloud occur, none of them good. We also increase dopamine levels, or the feel good chemical in our brain.

All of these allow us to be there for those we love, increase our productivity, and enjoy life more. This doesn’t have to be anything grandiose. It can be simply enjoying a peaceful cup of quality coffee or a nice hot bath and really savoring the moment. What activities are you going to do to bring yourself some joy?

CHECK ON YOURSELF

Today is Wednesday. Some people view this as “hump day”. They view it as just something to get past to make it to the weekend. I like to view as a time to check in with myself. Make sure that I am making the best use of the week. If I discover that I’m not, then I make adjustments.

A quick example is the post we had on Monday. We were to write 3 words on an index card – enjoy, appreciate and cherish. Am I asking myself what I am enjoying, appreciating and cherishing? If not, time to refocus and recommit. If we are, can we up our game? Can we ask ourselves one more time during the day? Can we add another word such as grateful?

Use Wednesday to check our progress for the week and make adjustments. Let us set ourselves up to finish the week strong!

HAPPY? FIRST DAY OF WINTER?

In my corner of the world, today marks the first day of winter. Temperatures are below freezing, there is the least amount of sunlight. Things that are really not conducive to a smiley, happy type outlook. I am not the biggest fan of winter. Things at dying all around me. I go to work when it is dark and when I leave work it is dark.

This year, however, I am working to change my outlook. Winter presents one of the biggest challenges for me. I suffer from a condition known as Seasonal Affective Disorder. It is where the lack of sunshine messes up your hormones and brain chemicals. This leads to things like fatigue, irritability and depression. These are not good qualities if you are a motivational author, speaker and blog writer.

Today not only marks the first day of winter, but three weeks to the day until I have open heart surgery. To be technical, for a small amount of time, I will be deceased during this procedure. That is to say, my heart will stop beating. God willing, after said time I will wake up again and begin to heal to be better than ever. It reminds me of winter turning into spring. Things die and then they are reborn.

So, I have decided, and I encourage you to do the same, to ‘put to death’ certain things in your life. Are there any negative habits you would like to rid yourself of? Toxic relationships you know you should really distance yourself from? Use this day, the first day of winter, the shortest day of the year, to kill off what doesn’t serve you in your own life. It will be a struggle, much like winter can be for me, but by spring we can be reborn with a healthy, more positive and rewarding life!

3 SIMPLE STEPS TO A GREAT WEEK

Living a positive and rewarding life does not need to be overly complicated. These three steps can do a lot to transform our week. I suggest writing down the the words, enjoy, appreciate and cherish on an index card and carry them with you this week. Pull it out and look at it as often as you can. All yourself, “What am I enjoying? What am I appreciating? And What am I cherishing?” If the answer is no, that’s OK. Just begin to look for something to fill in the answer and have a great day!

WE INTERRUPT THIS BLOG FOR A VERY IMPORTANT MESSAGE!

Today I am taking a break from our usual motivational content. It is my beautiful Margie’s birthday and I wish to take a moment to celebrate her. Although hustling and striving hard is important in life, it is also important to slow down and take time with those you love.

There are many reasons you should celebrate in life. These of course include Birthdays, anniversary and holiday celebrations. You should also celebrate ones that are unique and special to you. World penguin day? Visit the zoo and celebrate! (April 25th) There are holidays to look up everyday. Find ones that are special for you and the person you are with!

Today, I am going to do something I recommend you make a point to do with your partner as well. Celebrate them! I am doing this not only because it is her birthday, but because she is a wonderful woman, a great person, a caring friend and a loving partner. She is beautiful. She is smart. She is funny. Most of all I am going to celebrate, with a grateful heart, that she is mine!

Happy birthday baby!!! I love you and I hope you have a great day. Thank you for being mine!

WHAT A WATER BOTTLE CAN TEACH US ABOUT LIFE

Inspiration for my writing can come from anywhere at any time. Recently, it came from a story about a bottle of water. That’s right, a bottle of water. What can a simple bottle of water teach us about life and how to live it better? You would be surprised. Let us look at the story that inspired this post and then discuss how to apply it a little bit after.

A bottle of water in the supermarket is worth about $.50. That same bottle at a bar costs around $2. In a good restaurant or hotel it can be worth about $3. If you were at a concert, outdoor festival or airport you could pay up to $5! The bottle and brand is the same, the only thing that changes is the place. Each place gives a different value to the same product.

What does the fact that they charge you way to much for bottles of water at concerts and at the airport teach us about life? It teaches us that worth is not a fixed value. This is more important when it comes to ourselves than purified water in a plastic bottle. If you have a lot of moments of feeling worthless and have people around you who belittle you, it may very well be time to change places! Just like our bottle of water, do not stay where you are viewed at $.50, find that airport or outdoor concert. You are a $5.00 bottle of water. Find that place where you are valued. Seek out those smart and astute individuals who see the brilliant gifts you bring to the table.

I suggest keeping a bottle of water nearby to remind you of this principle. If you hear from someone who does not see your value, take a sip and remind yourself that you are a $5.00 bottle of water! Plus, staying hydrated is always a healthy thing to do! Share your world with those who find you refreshing.

STOP FALLING FOR THIS NONSENSE!

Daily we are greeted with messages of division. Some days they seem to be downright violent in their nature. It is messages of extremes delivered by one side or another. It gives us three very false impressions. The first is that you have to choose “One side or the other” You can’t be a little of this, or a little of that. With just a few seconds of logical thought, we can realize this is not true. In today’s world, which thanks to technology is growing more mixed and smaller than ever, people are a mix of a whole bunch of different things.

That brings us to the second false claim these stories and groups are putting out there. That most people belong to one of these “2 sides”. It is if people are made to feel guilty for having feelings that can understand and see and issue from both points of view. Here is a news flash for some of you – you can agree with parts of one side of and issue and parts of another side. In fact, if you do, that is a sign of open-mindedness and critical thinking. Seldom, if ever, is an issue black and white. Despite what you hear, you do not have to be on one side of an issue or another. You can choose the space in between and not only understand, but give respect to both sides.

That brings us to the last bit of misinformation those in certain circles would like us to believe – that if you disagree with someone you have to hate them or at the very least view them as if they were the enemy. This is not only obviously untrue, but ask yourself what we stand to gain by thinking this way. By making enemies of those who could have been friends with just a little bit of compassion and understanding. Ask yourself another important question, who stands to benefit by us being divided and working against each other? It brings more stress into our lives and reduces the amount of people we can share with. So, who does benefit from us being divided?

From now on I challenge you to stop being a sheep and believing that we must remain divided. We are far more powerful when we work together. How can we accomplish this? I will give you a few examples and I would love to hear more from you. In something as simple as sports we can try this. If you meet up with friends who cheer for a different team than you do (yes this is actually allowed in life) If your team wins, be gracious enough to say “Your team played a good game.” Maybe even mention a few things that they did well and wish them better luck next time. This works a lot better than mocking them and gloating about how good your team is. If your team loses, remember it is just a game. Congratulate them on their teams victory. In that contest, they were obviously the better team. Keep in mind this is just a game. It should be a chance to gather together and not say mean or hurtful things. Once again, nobody wins in that scenario.

Politics is an area that people are really getting after each other lately. To me, this is one of the most foolish. Do you know who benefits when we label each other as “Crazy” or “Evil” because our politics differ? Those politicians that seek to push their agendas by dividing us. The problem is not that neighbor Bill voted for someone different than you and has a different view of the world. The problem is that instead of seeking a middle ground and a solution that will benefit all people, we are told we have to be divided and only one side can win. When we do this we lose. We lose friends, we lose a good amount of peace and joy in our lives. We may even have families torn apart. As a parent or teacher we would never tell children that they should call the other kids they disagree with nasty names, but that is exactly what grown adults in the political arena are doing. What do we teach children? That is ok to be different and that we all have to find ways to play nice together, This is a message that we should deliver to those in power.

Lastly, there is religion and faith. This is so important in the lives of many. Our faith can be what gets us through the toughest times. Yet, just like politicians, certain religious leaders would prefer we view those who differ in their form of worship as “The enemy” or “Sinners”. Turning people we love, or those that we see do a lot of compassionate and loving things for the world as ‘the bad guys’. In mind mind, this is nothing short of stupid. When I hear of someone who enjoys a ritual that is different than what I may do, this is what I say. “Oh, that’s cool.” It doesn’t mean my beliefs are wrong or that theirs are better or worse than mine. It is just that they have found a different way to deepen their faith which will ultimately make them a better person.

Don’t be a sheep and follow what certain members of the media and those in power are telling you. We do not have to be divided. Those who are different than us can still be right and so can we. Be a lion. Show what love and compassion can do. Show what working together we can make the world a far better place than working against each other. Realize that in your own life, love and compassion for those who differ than you can bring you more peace and less stress. Awaken the lion within you.