Archive | December 2012

Treat Yourself like A Special Guest

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.”

– Oscar Wilde 

self love

 

 

 

 

 

 

Think of all the effort we extend when we have company coming over for the holidays or other festive celebrations. We often display our best tableware, candles and linens for our special guests. Additionally, we spend a lot of time and care in presenting a beautiful meal to go along with the picturesque scene.

Unfortunately, many of us never think of extending that same kind of care and effort for just ourselves. For instance, we probably would not think to use a beautiful place setting or create a fabulous feast for our solitary evening meal. This kind of self-nurturing can sound self-indulgent and foolish to many of us, and a complete waste of time.

We often discount such a treat by saying something like, “no use making a great meal only for myself.” This suggests that in order to do nice things for ourselves we have to be entertaining others, celebrating a special occasion or have some other reason for such pageantry.

Certainly, some preparations may be too time consuming to perform on a daily basis but treating ourselves like a special guest and friend can be a mind-set we adopt on an overall basis.

Not surprisingly, there may be some who unintentionally help us feel guilty or silly for embracing these ideas as well.

This is especially true when our self-care extends to other areas of our life, and conflicts with the expected behaviors assigned to us. For example, a friend of mine decided to postpone an out of town visit with loved ones, and was met with an unpleasant interrogation as a result.

As author Alan Cohen, contributing writer for the New York Times best-selling series Chicken Soup for the Soul reminds us, “We do not need to rationalize, explain, or defend our self-nurturing to anyone. If an activity brings us peace and delight, that is reason enough.”

When we aren’t true to ourselves and don’t do what makes us happy, we are basically “playing a part” and “acting” out the roles we have been assigned. Nothing is emptier than discounting and sacrificing ourselves for the approval and expectations of others.

This type of inauthentic relating can only lead to a heightened desire to stay away from those we are role playing with anyway.

It is freeing to know that there are no rules as to when we can officially do good things for ourselves; we can do it today, for no other reason than just because we want to.

Action Step:

Ask yourself, “If my good friend were coming over, what wonderful lunch or activity would I prepare?” Then treat yourself accordingly and prepare that for yourself.

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Wonderful Team Member Readership Award and Blog of the Year – 2nd Star!

wonderful-team-readership-award2

A BIG thank you to Fae’s Twist & Tango for nominating me for the Wonderful Team Member Readership Award and a second nomination for the Blog of the Year 2012 Award! This is my second star out of a total of 6 for this award, and I really appreciate it!

It is wonderful to be recognized by such a warm and creative spirit, such as Fae, who has a refreshingly unique way of sharing about travel, food, music, and more!

The rules for the Wonderful Team Member Readership Award are:

  1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and link back.
  3. Nominate 14 blogs for the award, a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
  4. Copy and paste the award on your blog somewhere.

Blog of the Year Award 2 star thumbnail

The rules for the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award are:

  1. Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award.
  2. Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen – there’s no minimum or maximum number of blogs required – and ‘present’ them with their award.
  3. Please include a link back to this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award – and include these ‘rules’ in your post (please don’t alter the rules or the badges!)
  4. Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them.
  5. You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award Facebook page and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience.
  6. As a winner of the award – please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award – and then proudly display the award on your blog and sidebar … and start collecting stars.

When you begin you will receive the ‘1 star’ award – and every time you are given the award by another blog – you can add another star! There are a total of 6 stars to collect.

It is my pleasure to introduce and bring attention to the many creative and inspirational people who share their talents through their blogs each month.

So, I am delighted to nominate the following Bloggers for the Wonderful Team Member Readership Award and the Blog of the Year 2012 Award!

For those who have already received a star(s) for the Blog of the Year award, please add an additional one to your badge! You can pick up the corresponding badge at the link shown in the rules.

  1. Poetry and Ice cream
  2. Patina and Company
  3. The Eco and the ID
  4. Caroline Skanne
  5. Day One
  6. Wild Sherkin
  7. Mirth and Motivation
  8. Tracy Campbell Wacky World of Writing
  9. Starfish Way
  10. Gentle Stitches
  11. Taming the Invisible Dragon
  12. Kokopelli Bee Free Blog
  13. Dutch Goes Italian
  14. Bam’s Kitchen

Congratulations to all!

Share the Love

gift of you 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The following writing was forwarded to me through an email chain, which I wanted to pass on to you, as we go into the holidays!

Enjoy!

Today may there be peace within.

May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others.

May you use the gifts that you have received and pass on the love that has been given to you.

May you be content with yourself just the way you are.

Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.

It is there for each and every one of us.

Author Unknown

Action Step:

Have a wonderful holiday!

Blog of the Year 2012 Award

Blog of the Year Award banner 600

It is an honor to be nominated for the Blog of the Year 2012 Award by Sloan at Taming the Invisible Dragon. Thank you very much!

This nomination means a lot to me, especially coming from someone who is such an inspiration, and genuine kind soul. I hope you will treat yourself and visit her blog soon!

So here is what you need to know about:

‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award

  1. Do you know a blog that deserves an award?
  2. Do you have special blogs that you love to read?
  3. Which blogs do you bookmark and follow?
  4. Would you like to give them an award this year?

Then the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award is for you!

Blog of the Year Award 1 star jpeg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rules for the award:

  1. Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award.
  2. Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen – there’s no minimum or maximum number of blogs required – and ‘present’ them with their award.
  3. Please include a link back to this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award – and include these ‘rules’ in your post (please don’t alter the rules or the badges!)
  4. Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them.
  5. You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award Facebook page and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience.
  6. As a winner of the award – please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award – and then proudly display the award on your blog and sidebar … and start collecting stars.

Unlike other awards which you can only add to your blog once – this award is different!

When you begin you will receive the ‘1 star’ award – and every time you are given the award by another blog – you can add another star!

There are a total of 6 stars to collect. This means that you can check out your favorite blogs – and even if they have already been given the award by someone else – you can still bestow it on them again and help them to reach the maximum 6 stars!

stars-6

There are so many blogs that do a fantastic job of providing inspiration, enlightenment and fun. This always makes it a challenge to single anyone out, from the vast amount who equally deserve acknowledgement.

I have gratefully received several awards recently, which has given me a wonderful opportunity to pass the recognition along by nominating many others as well.

Therefore, since this award has no minimum or maximum number of blog nominations required, I have decided to do a briefer list this time around, after the more lengthy ones previously provided.

And now here are my nominations:

  1. Pride in PhotosA pictorial delight and daily retreat for encouragement and inspiration!
  2. Beach Treasures and Treasure BeachesThis is a beach lover’s dream. It features beaches from around the globe, beach treasures, and souvenirs.  
  3. Pillows A-La-ModeA wonderful assortment of great craft ideas, to make your world more beautiful with her fun and clever creations.

Congratulations and enjoy!

Blessings,

Cathie

Savor the Silence

all human unhappiness

One cannot underestimate the importance of silence in our daily lives. Silence can have a profound impact in the way we think, our daily actions, and the way we operate in relationships. When we don’t allow ourselves to reflect and catch our breath; we miss out on the transformative power and growth that occurs in being quiet. As a result, we are less emotionally present to others and ourselves.

Often, when we don’t allow stillness into our lives, it is because we are trying to escape the pains of:

  1. Restlessness
  2. Irritability
  3. Loneliness
  4. Self-doubt
  5. Boredom

These feelings can make it difficult to be silent, and sit in a quiet room. Therefore, we seek solace in the internet, texting, television, and the like; thinking these will bring us happiness and drown out any discomfort we may feel.

Certainly, these forms of technology and entertainment are not a bad thing, as they can be quite useful and positive. However, it is only when we don’t balance the busyness with some quiet time, and stop noticing what’s going on in our inner world, that it can be harmful.

After all, the way to meaning and happiness is found through introspection and facing who we really are, rather than running away from ourselves. When we only fill our lives with noise, activity, and distractions; it moves us away from transforming our mind, and connecting to a deeper sense of fulfillment.

Many of us find it difficult to turn off the radio in our cars or not have any background noise in the house. It can feel uncomfortable to just sit with ourselves and not be “doing” or “saying” something or “listening” to others. We’re so used to cluttering up our minds with constant noise that it becomes hard to hear ourselves think.

Therefore, incorporating some quiet time into our lives on a regular basis will help free us from the onslaught of racket that interferes with our personal development.

It is amazing how many benefits come from giving ourselves the gift of silence, such as:

  1. Connecting to our true self and divine nature
  2. Noticing our innermost thoughts
  3. Discovering our deepest desires, wants and needs
  4. Cultivating a closer relationship with ourselves
  5. Getting nourishment, insights and support from within
  6. Less seeking for answers outside ourselves
  7. Gaining a strong intuitive sense
  8. Finding peace within
  9. Experiencing spiritual enlightenment
  10. Feeling a connection between our heart and mind

The more we make room in our lives for stillness and tranquility by turning off the noise that claims our attention; the more we are able ‘hear’ the messages from our inner selves, and stay quietly in a room.

Action Step:

Savor at least 5 minutes of silence today.

Transform Your Mood

 

As the holidays approach, many of us start to feel tension taking over; as we look upon the lists of all we have to do and buy. This can make our mood deteriorate to the point of resembling the “Grinch” or “Scrooge.

Often, we can’t just think our way out of a certain mood; we have to feel our way out.

One way to lift us up and transform our current state of mind is through music. Listening to heartwarming songs is a great way to reduce our stress, and regain our calm.

One such heartening song is entitled, Grown-Up Christmas List, sung by Amy Grant. It is sure to add more beauty and impact to the season.

Enjoy the video and lyrics provided.

Grown-Up Christmas List Lyrics

Do you remember me?
I sat upon your knee,
I wrote to you
With childhood fantasies.

Well, I’m all grown-up now,
And still need help somehow.
I’m not a child,
But my heart still can dream.

So here’s my life-long wish,
My grown-up Christmas list.
Not for myself,
But for a world in need.

(Chorus)

No more lives torn apart,
That wars would never start,
And time would heal all hearts.
And everyone would have a friend,
And right would always win,

And love would never end.
This is my grown-up Christmas list.

As children we believed
The grandest sight to see
Was something lovely
Wrapped beneath our tree.

Well Heaven surely knows
That packages and bows
Can never heal
A hurting human soul.

(Chorus)

No more lives torn apart,
That wars would never start,
And time would heal all hearts.
And everyone would have a friend,
And right would always win,
And love would never end.
This is my grown-up Christmas list.

This is my only life-long wish.
This is my grown-up Christmas list.

Action Step:

Relax with music, and enjoy the warmth of the holiday.

Create Your Day

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Many of us believe that the level of happiness we experience each day is subject to chance and that we are just recipients of fate. However, we do play a larger role in creating our day than we might imagine.

By understanding that we are in control of our thoughts, attitude and outlook, we can begin living more consciously and enjoying each day more fully. Below are some suggestions for creating a beautiful day and life.

Make an effort to get inspired. Instead of waiting for inspiration to come to us, we can actively give ourselves a boost of motivation. By reading, listening or watching something inspirational, we will infuse our present mindset with uplifting guidance and joy.

See the good. When we are focused on the good, we are less likely to let any undesirable events ruin our day. Instead, we put our attention on giving, not taking anything for granted, and counting our blessings. Then, we are more inclined to see the good in people, things and situations.

Surround yourself with support. It is important to limit our exposure to negativity as much as possible, as this energy can pull us down. Instead, we’ll want to surround ourselves with positive support, encouragement and love while spreading these gifts to others as well. This will help us feel good about ourselves and attract the things and experiences we desire.

Take a holistic approach. Healthy living is not only about caring for our minds and emotions, but about caring for our physical needs as well. We need to be sure to eat something nutritious, exercise our bodies and take breaks throughout the day.

Get your rest. Many of us find it hard to rest because of all the ‘to do’ lists, and worries we take to bed at night. For instance, we may rehash an argument we had that day, or worry about what could go wrong at work tomorrow. However, sleep is a time to rest from daily stresses and think of only positive things to come, which helps us prepare for the day ahead.

Be proactive. When we are proactive and taking actions toward our goals; we are less likely to passively walk around reacting to people or circumstances. Of course, nothing and no one is perfect and sometimes we need to experience loss and defeat in order to grow. These uncomfortable growth experiences can be a way of making us better people by helping us learn patience, forgiveness and perseverance. This allows us the best chance for creating a better day and future.

Action Step:

Create a joyful day, by feeding your mind with positive images, thoughts and ideas.