The Key to Happiness Is….

Letting go of the past and not letting it define you. Easier said than done, I know. But if you look at the past as a means of learning and if you don’t allow yourself to live in the past, you can redefine your future and use all the lessons you have learned to do so. How many times have you been in a moment of despair, the depths of sadness and a place of not knowing how to move forward. Then as time ticks on, so does life, it doesn’t stop for your problems or your worries, it just keeps going. Therefore so do you. Then time passes, things get better and maybe you even look back at those times that felt devastating to you and you think wow, I am so happy that happened, I totally get why! This is why you have to….trust that the Universe has your back (see below…Trusting the Universe). The past is just that and it has nothing to offer you except life lessons. Take those lessons and move forward in a positive direction and learn from those mistakes, heartaches and incredibly tough times. Always work towards the future and be mindful of each moment because you will never get that moment back.

Trusting yourself to make decisions that are best for you in any situation. Whether you are looking to change careers, are new to dating, deciding whether to have children or not, changing your household status….these are huge decisions that require much thought and contemplation. Trust yourself, listen to your gut and never ignore a bad feeling. Trusting yourself to do right by yourself if the first step in trusting others.

Trusting the Universe to provide you with what you need. Believe it or not, the Universe is listening to you. There is a saying ….”what you think about you bring about”. This is the truth. What you obsess over, you bring to fruition. So if you don’t want something negative to happen, it is critical that you do not think negative thoughts. When you want something positive to happen then think about it, visualize it, feel it as if it is here and expect it to come because again the Universe is listening.

Trusting that your God has a plan for you because he does. Trust him.

Being creative and even a little silly. We work so hard every day, at work, at home, and at our relationships and a lot of times we end up focusing so much on being productive and getting shit done, that we don’t spend enough time enjoying ourselves. My advice, be spontaneous, hop in your car and go for an overnight trip. Take a class. Go play in the dirt and make a garden. Go out and see a band play. Join a club. Do pottery. Doesn’t matter what you do, just do something that is outside of your “norm”.

Stop thinking so much and relax. We spend so much time thinking and worry about things that will never happen. How many times have you obsessed about and feared the outcome of something and it never came to fruition. You spent countless hours trying to figure out something that you have no control over, when you could just hand it over to the Universe and let it go from your mind. Which brings me to my next suggestion.

Give up controlling everything and everyone. You do not have to know how everything is going to turn out, you do not have to drive every situation to go your way and you do not have to control anyone, ever, not even yourself. Nothing good comes from control.

Breathe – seriously, when you start feeling down, anxious, upset, lonely, miserable etc. just breathe. Sit in a quiet space, close your eyes and breathe. Driving in the car? ok, pull over, close your eyes and breathe. At work? That’s ok, close your office door, sit down at your desk, close your eyes and breathe. My point is, you can be anywhere, it doesn’t matter…just breathe.

Celebrating the little things and appreciating them. Most of the time it is the little things that matter and make the most impact in our lives. So celebrate them and thank the Universe for bringing you these wonderful little gifts of magic.

Setting long term goals can help you to organize your thoughts by getting them out of your head and putting them down on paper or a white board, etc. Setting goals is one of the best ways to obtain the things you want (i.e. house, wedding, boat, car, pay off student loan, change careers etc.)

Patience and respecting the timing of things. Not all things happen on our time table. In fact most things aren’t. The saying “timing is everything” is a thing. It really IS everything. and depending on what you believe in, all things do happen for a reason. Trust the timing.

Mindfulness. This is one of the hardest things for people to do. Mindfulness holds you in the NOW, the HERE, THIS MOMENT. So many people go through life thinking about yesterday and tomorrow and end up missing a fantastic moment because they were not present. Mindfulness brings you into the HERE AND NOW, THIS MOMENT. So next time you are laying in bed with your significant other and your mind starts to wander…say to yourself “be here now” and relish in the moment that you are sharing together..even if its just a cuddle in bed…remember..its the little things.

Being kind to others even if they aren’t kind in return. I know this seems silly and a waste of good energy to be kind to someone who isn’t kind back. But sometimes, not all the time but sometimes you can change a persons mood just by smiling at them or cracking a joke etc. I can’t tell you how many times I have gone into a store and the cashier won’t even look at me and I say “Hi, how are you? how is your day going” and most of the time the cashier will look at me and smile. Sometimes it just takes that one person to brighten your day! You never know what a person is going through….so be mindful of their struggles.

Spending time outside is critical to long term happiness. Nature is knowing to heal people with mental illness. In fact doctors in the Netherlands prescribe nature to people struggling with mental illness such as anxiety disorders and depression.

Exercise is another key to long term health and happiness. Get that body moving and those endorphins pumping. As soon as you start an exercise routine you will feel motivated and excited and as soon as the routine is in place you will start to feel the results of the workout and that will instantly make you happy! How could it not?

Eating well & nourishing your body is along the same lines as exercising. Our bodies need to move. We were not meant to be sedentary. Now don’t say things like…I don’t have time or I can’t afford a gym membership. Everyone has time. Lacking time is the worst excuse EVER in my opinion. If you have time to watch TV, eat, go on Facebook etc. you have time to work out. Can’t afford the gym? take a walk, take a run, go for a hike, do yoga at home. YOU DO NOT NEED A GYM MEMBERSHIP! So go ahead and move that body – start today.

Surrounding yourself with beautiful things – start by making your home an oasis, your oasis. Fill your home with beautiful things. Decorate it with your style. Display photos, fresh flowers, big puffy pillows, soft sensual colors, etc. Whatever your style is…display it and surround yourself with it.

Treating yourself kindly. Buy yourself flowers, take a hot bath, exercise, do yoga, practice meditation, read a book, take a nap, start a blog, take yourself on a date, go on a trip. Just be nice to yourself.

Always being yourself and loving who that is.

What I wish I always knew

When you are broken, let it motivate you to become who you really are meant to be.

Whatever that is.  Whoever that is.

Don’t let that experience go to waste.  Embrace it.  Feel it.  Own it.  Despise it.  Then love it.  Respect it.

It teaches you something.

Be YOU!

Whatever that is.  Whoever that is.

It is important that you learn the lesson or it will repeat and beat you up ten fold next time.

Look at yourself in the mirror, write yourself a love note, meditate and thank God for creating you.

Because there is only one you and you are AMAZING!
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Everything is a moment

Nothing is better or worse than this moment because this moment is the only one that truly exists.

As is noted and quoted frequently, “the past is gone and the future has not yet happened” – therefore the only true moment we have is right now, this moment, this second, this experience. Nothing else matters.

So with this knowledge, I empower you to ask yourself –

what is your action?

Are you going to keep living in the past? Are you hoping to bring a certain moment back so you can relive that same experience? or are you desperately hoping for a “re-do” so you can take the knowledge you have been given and with that you can handle a situation differently. (Ahhh wouldn’t that be nice?!)

Are you going to keep trying to control the future by predicting or guiding the outcome in your favor?

OR….

Are you going to focus on experiencing the NOW..not yesterday, last week, tomorrow, 3 weeks from now, next Christmas…you get my point!

Planning ahead for your future is fine, and sometimes necessary but you must leave room for the changes or bumps in the road that may change the course of your Journey.

Don’t get me wrong, you can “plan” for something as if it may happen, but you simply cannot predict or control the outcome and guarantee that it will.

Example:

Your child is born –

In your eyes he is brilliant, a leader, he is going to do great things.

So you plan his future, save for college, as he grows and develops you start putting YOUR ideas about his future into his head and into action about what he SHOULD do with his life.

Well, eventually your child grows up and he becomes his own person with his own purpose, his own likes and passions (or not) and unfortunately they don’t match your dreams and goals that you have for him.

So you become disappointed and frustrated because your child has not followed the path that you have created for him.

Ultimately this brings up feelings for you – rejection, failure, and fear for his future.

This happens because you didn’t leave room for change, you didn’t understand that your child, although he is your flesh and blood, he is not an extension of you. He has his own Journey to follow that may or may not be aligned with your vision for his life.

So the one thing we have to realize is, we have no control over anything.  Life is constantly changing and evolving around us.

Truthfully, I am grateful for this!

Can you imagine a life that didn’t change? What would we learn? How would we grow?

It is experiences, good and bad that shape us and make us into who we are (good and bad). We are never the same person – unless we stop growing.

Have you ever told a story from a long time ago. A story of struggle, a time you weren’t sure you were going to make it, but of course you did, and it made you so much stronger? You tell that story today with so much pride and even a little laughter at the situation thinking “wow, I can’t believe I made it through that!”

I have had some hard hard roads. Some of my experiences nearly broke me. However when I look back at those experiences I am truly grateful for them because they shaped me into the person I am today.

I am much more balanced from all these experiences and I am able to focus and appreciate each and every moment knowing that is all we really have.

This moment!

How to practice self love daily

How do you start your day?

~Life is an endless process of self discovery~

Self-love is not a trend, it is not something you do when you feel like it.  You don’t just “do self-love” after a break up or after you experience trauma.  Self-love is a life long practice that needs to be added to your every day life. With self-love comes the releasing of negative thoughts and self-criticism by embracing more of a loving and positive acceptance of yourself through forgiveness of yourself and others.

The Universal concept is that our thoughts create our actions and therefore those thoughts dictate the outcome in our lives.  Self-love is a very powerful and necessary practice and critical if you want to have healthy relationships with others.

Self-love is not selfish!

Taking care of and loving ourselves and being a whole, sound and emotionally healthy person allows us to take care of others without it feeling like a burden. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, if you don’t rest and relax your soul, then you will be of no help to others— especially yourself.  You will eventually feel drained and eventually there will be nothing left to give.  You must give to yourself as well as give to others.

Below is a a simple self-love checklist that may seem overwhelming to you at first, however, I promise that if you commit to adding a majority of them into your daily routine or practice as I like to call it, every single day, you’ll see the benefits immediately.

45 Ways to Practice Self-Love

  1. Create a quiet and safe zone in your home (may it be a corner, a closet, or a spare rom and deem it your “space”)
  2. Buy yourself fresh flowers (or cut them from your garden and display them)
  3. Grow a garden of fresh vegetables
  4. Start an exercise routine (yoga, pilates, the gym, take a walk) – increase those endorphins (see Creating a workout routine you can and will stick to)
  5. Read, take a nap, listen to music, sit quietly – please just rest your soul
  6. Buy yourself some new makeup and play with it
  7. Create a daily bucket list and post it
  8. Repeat the following mantra “I love and accept myself”
  9. Make a list of all the things you like about yourself
  10. Create a gratitude journal (see How to start Journaling – Keystone Habit)
  11. Start your day with meditation and yoga
  12. Implement a “treat yourself day” (mine is Friday)
  13. Dress nice, even if you don’t have to, put on those earrings, scarf and lipstick and show the world how beautiful you are
  14. Take a breath between your bites of food and savor the taste
  15. Make yourself a hot cup of coffee or tea and savor each sip
  16. Have a protein or collagen smoothie every morning
  17. Sleep at least 7 hours a day
  18. Say no and be ok with it
  19. Pay it forward, always
  20. Make someone feel good whenever you can
  21. Smile often, even if no one is smiling at you (they may think you are weird but that is ok)
  22. Eat food that is nourishing (put down the boxed food – unless its treat day)
  23. Get a massage and have them use essential oils
  24. Go for a hike or long walk in nature
  25. Be confident (walk and talk with confidence)
  26. Learn something new – dance classes, yoga, tennis lessons, start or join a MeetUp group
  27. Host a ladies night
  28. Call a friend and laugh for hours about nothing (no complaining)
  29. Spend time with your kids before they grow up and move away 😦
  30. Get a new haircut and/or buy some new makeup
  31. Eat chocolate guilt free (maybe on treat day)
  32. When someone offers your a compliment, simply say, “Thank you”
  33. Travel solo
  34. Set a no screen time in your house (dinner, after 9, etc)
  35. Set goals (see Improve your life with these simple Keystone Habits)
  36. Take a day off and do something nice for yourself (go to the gym, coffee shop, shop, meet a friend for lunch, take a walk, sleep)
  37. Self-love mantra: “I am enough. I have enough. I do enough”
  38. Let go of what no longer serves you
  39. Buy a diffuser and infuse essential oils like lavender
  40. Write a letter to yourself and put it away for a year
  41. Host a dinner party
  42. Hire a coach or a counselor (see The real benefits of working with a Life Coach)
  43. Take a hot bath with Epsom salt and lavender (or whatever your favorite oil is)
  44. Make new friends (and remove those toxic ones)
  45. Clean out your closet and donate clothes you no longer wear

The biggest message I have is, be gentle with yourself and always honor where you are at every stage of your Journey.

The best advice I have been given – ever is to ~feel your feelings~

Namaste’

Contact Us if you would like to work with a coach to help you kick start your self-love and self care routine!