Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Get Ready!

You wake up ready to tackle your goals but something happens along the way.  You look around and you see a mess, your home, room or office may seem to be in disarray and then you feel unsettled.  It happens to me.  For some reason things need to be in order for me to be able to focus....so what do I do?  I organize my space....  I make sure my area looks clean, I even do my hair, put some make up as I simply want to feel like I am ready....lol

Ready for what?  Well, ready for anything.  I want to be ready to take action in a moments notice, I want to be able to look at my surroundings and be able to breathe in satisfaction.   It simply allows me to focus my attention where it belongs, on my goals for the day.

So now that I am ready, what's next?  Well I know I have some goals, but what do I need to do today to chip away at my goals?   The truth is we may be doing a lot or we may be not doing enough but in order to be clear on our progress we need to outline the tasks for today.   I find that if I look at the entire goal, I can become overwhelmed as the end result may not seem attainable soon enough. But if I focus on small tasks, I can tackle them and see progress.  You see when you can measure your progress you feel motivated to do more, and feel accomplished when your task is completed.

Ok...so as I am writing this, I know I am ready to go, my home is clean, my area is organized and I am busy working.  So what do I want to achieve today? What things do I need to do today to feel like this day was productive?   Do you know?  I know you do, so write it down.

I personally since I know I can procrastinate, I have people who will hold me accountable.  Yup, they know the goals, the timelines and they have no problem calling me out.  Yes, I need that from time to time and probably so do you.

Get ready, get organized, prepare yourself and get busy 
You got work to do!

The Problems with Envisioning More

Let me begin by declaring that the ability to envision a better future has not only been a need in my life; it’s made a huge difference. Why? Well, let me share an experience with you.

When I came out of my divorce I had no money and no credit. We closed on our house on Thursday, July 31st, 2014 as a short sale. Therefore not only did I walk away with nothing but my credit was affected for the next 3 years. I asked for the paperwork of the closing to be given to me as soon as possible and they told me I should have within the next week. I did a little begging and thankfully I received everything I needed the next day; I was thrilled. The following day, Saturday I headed to the apartment complex I wanted to call home......I was providing them with all my paperwork and crossing my fingers to get approved. They asked me to come back the next day. On that Sunday I was up and ready first thing in the morning, all my papers were in order and I already knew which apartment I wanted, I was ready! I had to believe in my heart that my lack of credit or money would not stand in my way.

That same day, within two hours I got the call...I was approved and there were two apartments ready for the taking. I went to see them but I could not see my daughter walking home in the dark of night through the woods....it was not a comforting thought. So be it that I did not like the idea of her walking through the woods and the fact I could use some time to gather money, I asked to be placed on the waiting list. I told them I would be ready by November 15th! They realtor looked at me and mentioned that people tend to move during summer or fall due to weather, so he suggested I be ready no later than November 7th....I said YES but I had requirements. I wanted an apartment with view to the parking area and I wanted it to be a corner apartment.

Every week I would visit the model home and would enter the specific model I wanted, I memorized every corner of every room; I became so familiar with it that I can see it with my eyes closed. Then I would drive to the complex in which I wanted to live and I would visit my ideal neighborhood; always gravitating to the corner apartments with view to the parking lot. I needed to feel I belonged; I needed to feel it was real. Then I began to imagine myself cooking and cleaning my apartment, remember I had memorized every corner of that apartment; it felt real. Now let me tell you why it was so important for me to envision my home......you see when I left my house my daughter had to move in with her dad....therefore for a few months we were separated and that really hurt. I needed to be home with my kid, I wanted to hear, see and know she was with me. So I made it a point to focus on my home. I would go online to see curtains; I would even go to the model home to take measurements so I that I could plan what I wanted for my new place. I was on a mission.

So why did I take all these steps? Because the problem with envisioning more is that we must believe that we can achieve, but for some of us who feel burnt in life, envisioning is hard. But think about it, when your reality sucks, your mind won't accept an image to replace what it knows; it is already convinced of its reality, it knows what it feels. So I needed to be able to walk through, to touch, and to feel. I needed to visit my future home in order to understand that this could and would become my reality. Then envisioning was not only possible, but it was essential.

I got the call and I was overjoyed....we moved in on Friday, November 7th, 2014!

Envisioning is a mind game. We do it to replace the negative thoughts produced by our bad experiences. Can everyone envision? Yes, it’s easy once we get passed the initial hurdle. If you are struggling you will need to find ways to connect to the vision.......just as I did, by visiting, measuring, walking through, I did anything I could to make this vision my reality. You need to be able to believe in your heart or you will not allow your mind to entertain it.

What do you want to bring in to your life?
If it’s a car, why not go to the dealerships, test drive, smell the interior, feel the steering wheel in your grip? You need a car, right? Well why not that one? No, I am not telling you to get yourself in debt but I am telling you that sometimes to envision we need to be able to see, touch, and feel.

Today, I can envision better but like I said it was not easy at first because my mindset was stuck in the past, in all the times that things simply did not work. Can you try this? Or better yet,

“Will you try this?”

Monday, February 22, 2016

Would You Recognize A Hero?

 Eileen Gonzalez - Life According to Me
What does a Hero look like?   Well we know that many men and women put their lives on the line every day for perfect strangers.  Some do it as part of their job, occupation and others simply choose at a moments notice to give it all for someone in need.  
They may not intend to pay the ultimate sacrifice but at times
they do simply because they refuse to abandon the weak or
those who need the most.

But what if everyday, we walk past a hero, would we recognize them if they had no uniform?  Would we know their sacrifice if they did not share their story?  The truth is we wouldn't, yet everyday someone gives the very best of them to someone.   It can be to a loved one, to a co-worker, to someone on the bus, or someone they just happen to pass on the street.

Sometimes a smile is all they gave, yet saved the life of someone who felt invisible.  Sometimes just saying hello to a stranger as your kids roll their eyes, cause you seem to say hello to everyone, sometimes that hello, reminds someone that they are worth being acknowledged.  Holding the door for someone may tell them that they are not too fat, or too ugly or too skinny or too "whatever" to be treated as a human being.

Do you realize that everyday we have the ability to be someone's hero, we do not need to be recognized as such but to that one person who we may never see again, we may be just that,
"A Hero". You may not remember their face, yet your face will forever be in there memory...,,Why?  Because you took one moment out of your day to care.

What does a Hero look like?  What should they look like?  I don't know....but I do think a hero can look just like you.  All it takes to be a hero is to care; to care so much that you will extend your hand to that person no matter their race, color, ethnicity, height, weight.......no matter what because all you see is a person in need.   All it takes to be a hero is to intentionally give the very best of you, not because its expected but because its what you want to do.   All it takes to be a hero is to recognize that you are not just you, but you are part of something bigger....your divine essence is part of a Universe in where we are all connected and through that connection we all come together as one.  All it takes to be a hero is to recognize that you are my sister, my brother, my friend and as such, there is no divide but instead just love.

What does a Hero look like.........A Hero looks like YOU.

Our Appearance a Reflection of How We Feel!

I was just eating some mango's not out of hunger but rather than going for cookies I chose the fruit. Why?, well because I got a lot to do, much uncertainty and in some way I am stressed.
NO, I am not whining!  Hear me out....

It does not matter how good we are at controlling stress or our emotions, sometimes we get sidetracked and we fall into the madness.  We can catch ourselves quickly but sometimes we don't realize until a moment of lucidity shows up....possibly when you are eating with out being hungry. Ya know what I mean?  Sometimes we wake up and wonder, "what the heck am I doing?"

 Follow UsOK, so this message is not about dieting and its not about the food groups, its more about how we feel impacts our appearance.  You see if we are depressed, if we feel down we may eat more or not enough.  Some gain weight and some lose weight yet neither is done in a healthy manner.  Why is this?  Well stress triggers our hormones to go nuts and even though the hormones can help us react it can also impact how we eat and what we eat.  Have you ever been stressed and simply lost your appetite?   Have you ever reacted to stress by finding comfort food and lots of it?   We don't intentionally eat or not eat, its a reaction to the stress.  Yet when we fall into these feelings we then also begin to feel guilt of our eating habits.  Before we gain the weight we already feel it or we may feel weakness from not eating enough.  Then we see it in our clothes and again the guilt is more present than the weight change.  We carry ourselves as if wanting to hide what is visible.  We don't want anyone to recognize we lost weight or gained it because we know it was not intentional, in fact we know its tied to something we may not want to or be ready to share.

Our appearance is dependent on how we feel....its a reflection.  Why?  Because if you feel good about yourself, if you feel satisfied of your accomplishments you carry yourself with pride.  You walk tall, speak clearly and you own your step.  It does not matter if you are a little under weight or if you are overweight...your appearance is a direct reflection of how you feel.

The same happens when you feel like crap.  When you feel bad about your results, when you feel like you constantly fail or struggle, you begin to hunch a little, your voice is not as strong as you wish not to be heard and you find yourself excusing yourself or apologizing for silly things,

Does this ring true to you?  If it does.......how are you feeling right now?  When you come across strangers or a group of acquaintances how do you feel, how do you portray yourself?  Do you stand tall and speak clearly or do you find a corner you can hide in?

If  you are not feeling good about you, find why you are feeling this way.  Find what needs to happen for you to feel better, then get clear on what you are willing to commit to doing to help you get there.
Stress is a mind game, and it can kick our ass if we let it.  We can't always talk ourselves out of stress, sometimes we need help and when you do, you should have no shame in seeking a professional.  But there are times that we can do something and that becomes evident when we address our feelings.   Understand that stress is an emotion and that you are perceiving yourself according to such emotion,  Therefore what you see is not the truth of what is there.  It is important to understand this in order to stop ourselves from being cruel to ourselves, remember we can be our own worst enemy,   We can speak cruelty into our lives, we can act in ways that crush our spirit and we can create limitations that do not belong in our lives.

Our Appearance is a Reflection of How We Feel....so what are you feeling?

What About Faith?

We hear this word tossed around so much but what does it really mean?  Where can I find it and how can does it work?  Well it begins with a belief, it can be a big emotion or it can quite faint....I know that when I first found it, it felt as a thin, fragile life line which was barely present.  Yet despite how faint it was, it was strong enough to allow me to hold on for dear life.  Yet faith is not just an emotion........faith implies ACTION.

Action?  What do you mean?  Well, its easy to speak about faith, in  fact many toss it around all the time, yet when you look at their lives you do not see evidence of faith.   You see faith requires us to act, to move.  We must do it when things don't look good, when things seem to be against us.  Faith is a proclamation we make, our testimony that says that no matter how tough things get we will be tougher.   It means that no matter how uncertain the path before us may be we will continue our journey even if taking baby steps.  It means that we will not wait for things to be perfect for us to get started, we will instead get started and enjoy the perfect moments that come from giving our all.

Faith can be found in a church, sure.....yet you can also go to church and leave empty handed.  You see faith starts from within, its your personal decision to move forward...your personal acceptance that there is something greater than what you can see and you are willing and committed to connecting with it.

So yes, what about faith?  Well its not a noun, its a verb....it requires action from you.
You can speak about it but until you act upon it you do not know its meaning.   Faith is the light that shines before, its the force that guides us and its the strength that carries us.

Its time we stop talking faith.....its time we start living in faith or better yet, "Walking in Faith"

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

You're Fired

Are you feeling bad about being fired or let go? Well sometimes it's a gift from life forcing you back on the path toward the life you are intended to live. Follow the link below to read about 19 Successful People Who Have Been Fired.

Let's face it, being fired leaves a bad taste in our mouth....it has a way of demoralizing us.  However being fired, being laid off is sometimes a really good thing, of course after the initial shock.  At first we feel numb, uncertain of how to feel.  Then as we awaken we begin to feel emotions of sadness, anger and fear.  Questions of how we will get back on our feet, how we will meet our responsibilities, etc, plague our mind and our heart.

As bad as it may seem, we need to understand without a reasonable doubt, that in this day and age there is no such thing as job security.  I know this is a scary concept, one many do not want to accept. Yet our ability to accept it or not does not change it from being true.  There is no loyalty to you no matter how good you are.  In fact, you can bend over backwards, wear multiple hats but when push comes to shove you may be left on the street.   So what do you do?

Well, once you get past the shock you need to get clear on what you can do and this my friend is completely up to you.  I can give you ideas however you need to find something you enjoy and hopefully something you can control.  Control?

This is where some venture on their own, they join businesses, become consultants or freelancers or even open their own shop.  They will do things with an attempt to protect their future.  OK...well we've seen many fail...right?

Yes we have,, however why is that?   Well, if we run like a chicken without a head toward an opportunity we may find ourselves trying things without a connection.  And if we don't connect, we don't succeed.  This is why we need to THINK.  Yes, I said it, "think".   You see we need to find something that feels right for us, that seems like an extension of who we are.   I will give you an example.....if you told me right now that I can become a millionaire selling ads, you may get my immediate attention, however unless I enjoy it, unless I feel a sense of accomplishment I might not be committed enough to put in the time it takes to reek the profits.

Therefore we must find something we truly enjoy,  that is key especially when we are exploring new things.  Its tough out there...its not easy to start new things....but as many of you know sometimes the only option is to learn new things, to reinvent who we are and how we do things.  You see we can choose a career but we can't choose what our employers will do.  Thus as long as we work for others we are dependent of their decisions.  

Now....don't get me wrong, you can work for others for the rest of your life and be very successful in life......Good for you and more power to you.   This message is for those that are uncertain, who feel defeated at times or whom have known defeat and fear feeling it again.   If you are still working this is a great time to prepare yourself with options......you may never need them but having them handy can save you much heartache.   If you are like many who are surprised with the pink slip, understand that life has decided to push you back on track therefore don't let fear guide you, instead use it as fuel to get you moving toward where you need to be.

Your Biggest Competitor is The Old You

I have had weight problems all my life, in fact I was a big baby. However throughout the years I came to realize my weight fluctuated depending on my mood, my emotions. Give me a little stress and I ran for that ice cream. Weight issues were a part of my day to day. So much so, that I began to define my intelligence by my weight. When I lost weight I felt smarter, more assertive. However when I gained weight I felt clumsy, insecure and I felt that all others saw was my weight. Well that was how I saw myself and as a result I carried myself in a way that others could not see past my own emotions. I did not walk tall or proud, instead I displayed shame and insecurity. I had the luck to meet women who were as big or somewhat bigger who did not seem to allow their weight to define them. I actually have one in mind who would walk into a room and own the attention of her audience. She was big but most of all she was fabulous. She was assertive, level headed and very articulate. I admired her.......but how was it possible that she could be so confident while I wasn't? OK......so why was I allowing myself to be heavy? It was clear through my life that I could lose weight so why was it so hard to keep it off? Because I was not happy! You see at some point in my life I stopped dreaming, I gave up on pursuing better or pushing myself. I simply accepted what I knew as if it were all I could have or be. Sounds familiar? It should because too many of us get on the train to no where. We board it with low expectations and as it begins to move we lose our willingness to dream. We even get annoyed at ourselves when we catch ourselves daydreaming of better. So, one pound at a time, it kept on piling on and the more depressed I felt the more ice cream I ate. I hate saying this.....but not til my divorce did I find myself in a good place to begin losing weight. I can't blame my then husband for my weight.....I blame me. I blame me for boarding that train and to pushing my dreams away. I blame me because when I would get a sense of hope, I was quick to convince myself that I was being naive. So what have I learned? I learned that we must want more....we need to envision what we want and understand why we want it. We need to get clear on how our lives would improve upon achieving such goal and even more, we need to get clear on what it would mean NOT to achieve it. You see, without your "WHY" it will be much harder to commit to your goal. So what did losing weight mean to me? To me, losing weight meant freedom, it meant feeling empowered and it meant feeling proud of finally reaching something that felt impossible for so long. How do I do this if I've been up and down so often? I best be ready to work for it! Goals are not achieved over night and are not sustained by just reaching them. Goals require work, commitment and a belief we can move forward despite the challenges ahead of us. We must be ready for the set backs and see them as part of the learning process. If we don't learn from the past we will repeat the same mistakes that got us there. Be it losing weight, running a marathon, graduating, or finding an amazing job....whatever it is you want you must see it in your mind, believe you can achieve it and GIVE IT YOUR ALL. Set backs are not intended to stop you but as teaching moments, stay the course, you will see results. Keep moving forward and you will achieve.
  • Get clear on WHY its important to you?
  • Envision yourself achieving your goal
  • Commit to it with all your heart
  • Hold yourself accountable - be true to self even when it hurts
  • Compete......not with others but with your old mindset
  • Believe.....you must believe you can do more even when your goal seems far from reach
  • Celebrate....everyday you work toward your goal is a day closer to achieving it, so pat yourself on the back for those steps you take even if baby steps
Don't give up on your goals......stay focused and remember your biggest competitor is the old version of you.