You Don’t Have What it Takes….

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Aldrin_Apollo_11.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Aldrin_Apollo_11.jpg

 

Has anyone ever said to you that you don’t have what it takes? Often this is said with disdain and accompanied by a sneer. Perhaps you’ve even said this to yourself, complete with distain and a sneer.

What no one tells you is that it’s an incomplete sentence, only a phrase. The full sentence is: you don’t have what it takes…for this.

Don’t take it personally when someone says this to you—or if you say it to yourself. View it as an invitation to press the Pause Button of your life and think it through. Take the time to answer the question “Do you have what it takes for this, the path you’ve chosen?”

Perhaps it seems like you don’t have what it takes because you haven’t gathered enough information to fully understand the journey to your dreams. Or, it could be that you’re letting yourself down because you’re shying away from doing the tough things and the tasks that are essential but are not fun.

Maybe you’ve discovered that the statement is true because you realize you really don’t have enough passion to pursue “your thing” at a high level; you enjoy it enough as a hobby but not enough to take it to the next level.

All of this is fine because, even though you may not have what it takes for this (whatever your “this” is), you do have what it takes for something else.

http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=29416&picture=trophies&large=1
http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=29416&picture=trophies&large=1

Your homework for today is to take a moment and think about where you are on your journey. This week, did you notice that you aren’t really enjoying your path—and that it isn’t because you’re in a phase that’s a little tougher than other phases? Could it be that this path isn’t the right one but the trail that you thought was a tangent is actually the superhighway to your dreams?

On the other hand, did you notice that progressing toward your goals and dreams is getting easier? Perhaps things are beginning to flow….

Where ever you find yourself on your path this week, let’s celebrate. You are discovering new things about yourself, refining what it is you’re striving for, and making great progress. Even if you’re unsure or you’ve hit a rough patch, celebrate the fact that you’re still moving forward—you haven’t given up or quit.

Yay you! You’re awesome!

Feel free to leave a comment regarding your progress. We want to celebrate with you!

I’m so proud of the progress you’re making, the things you’re discovering, and your courage to keep on going. Truly awe-inspiring!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

 

 

Throw Off the Bowlines!

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Freiheitu.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Freiheitu.jpg

 

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. ~ Mark Twain

 

Shake off your doubts and fears. Trust that you’ll figure it out. Draw courage from the times in the past when you were up against a problem and it seemed as if there was no way to solve it but somehow, some way, you did. You figured it out.

If you did it at least once before, you can do it again. Go for it!

Your homework today is to throw off the bowlines and set sail for your dreams.

You can do it!

Post in the comments section how exhilarating it feels to go for it!

I’m so proud of you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

National Reduce Stress Day

http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=15614&picture=headache
http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=15614&picture=headache

 

April is Stress Awareness month and today is National Reduce Stress Day.

So, let’s talk about the stressors in our daily lives and what we can do about them.

As you probably know, there are two types of stress. There’s the good kind of stress, called eustress, which you feel during positive moments, such as when you’re looking forward to a special vacation or to getting together with friends and family. The anticipation and excitement is stressful, but in a good way—a way that motivates you to move toward the happy event.

Dis-stress, the bad kind of stress, is the culprit that causes high blood pressure, anxiety and depression, among other things. It can be a contributing factor in people’s bad behavior and poor choices. Distress can be caused by commuting in bumper-to-bumper traffic, having too much on your plate, not taking time to recharge, and the like.

Even if your life is ideal, day-to-day living has, inherently, a certain level of stress. It’s unrealistic to think we can get rid of every last little bit of it. The more effective and helpful tack to consider is figuring out how to eliminate the unnecessary stress and then learn techniques for managing the stress that you do have.

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Relaxed.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Relaxed.jpg

 

Your homework today is in four parts. The first is to eliminate unnecessary stressors: say “no” to projects that aren’t your responsibility and ones that do not interest you; delegate or ask for help on your obligations and responsibilities; and to not create drama and be sure to walk away from others’ dramas.

The second part of your homework is to lessen the impact of stress in your life. For instance if you commute in traffic, instead of taking the highway, perhaps it might be less stressful and more enjoyable to take the back roads. Think of other, less stressful, ways to do the things that must be done.

Third, come up with ways to regularly release the stress that builds up. Yoga, meditation, exercise, spending time with people whose company you enjoy, pursuing your hobbies, people watching, nature walks, and listening to uplifting music are a few suggestions. Also, sometimes taking a moment to breathe deep and remind yourself that this, too, shall pass can keep things in perspective and be beneficial in releasing stress.

Finally, put your thinking cap on and make a list of ways you can eliminate and reduce stress in your life, and note the stress-releasing methods that work for you. Refer to this list often!

You can do it, I know you can!

What do you do to release stress? Post in the comments section!

I’m so proud of you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Tax Day Gratefulness

Copyright Sweet Doll Images
Copyright Sweet Doll Images

 

On Tax Day, be glad for what you do have and where you are right now. Turn your focus away from that check you may have to write to the IRS and rivet your attention on the opportunities, adventures, and the depth and richness of your life—things that are far more valuable than any amount of money in the bank.

Even though you’re still a work in progress and even though you may not be where you want to be, you can look back over the last week–month, year, five years, and more–and thank your lucky stars you’re here and not there. You’re making great progress toward your dreams; you’re discovering cool things about yourself and Life; you’re more fully yourself that you’ve ever been. It’s so thrilling to discover and express the true you!

But, what if the past actually was better than where you find yourself right now? You still have a lot for which to be thankful. For one, you know what it’s like to be in a good place so you know what you are aiming for. Secondly, your best days are ahead of you. As long as you’re still here, still breathing, you still have something good, valuable, and honorable inside you to share.

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Original_caption-_A_couple_of_hearty_characters_roar_at_a_good_joke_Art.IWMARTLD135c.jpg

Your homework today is to take a moment and be glad and thankful for what you do have and for where you are headed. Also be grateful for the things that got you to this point in your life—the good and the bad. Without them, you would not be where you are and who you are right now.

And, take the next step on the journey to your dreams! You still have plenty of potential—go out there and share it! You can do it!

What are you thankful for? Post your answer in the comments section.

I’m so proud of you and I’m grateful to know you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Distractions

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sciurus-vulgaris_hernandeangelis_stockholm_2008-06-04.jpg

 

We start a task and are moving along nicely on it, then we think of the email we need to send or a recipe for tonight’s dinner pops into our mind or we have an idea that could help a project at work. We pause in our current task just to do this little thing, after all it’ll only take a moment…. The next thing we know, it’s evening and we have half-finished projects strewn about and nothing really to show for the day even though we were busy every moment.

Distractions! Argh!

One antidote to this is to keep a notepad and pencil handy–or the recording feature on your phone can do the trick–and as your working on a specific task and you think of “important” things you could do right then, instead of stopping what you’re doing to spend “just a moment” following the distraction, jot a note to yourself.  When you’ve finished the task you were working on, then you can take a look at the distraction(s).

There are very few that are critical emergencies and must be taken care of immediately.  Most distractions can wait until you’re finished working on your current task.  And, when you take a moment to really look at the distractions you’ve noted, most of them can probably wait indefinitely for you to get to them.  Furthermore, there most likely would be no harm done if you did wait indefinitely!

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Yepun%E2%80%99s_Laser_and_the_Magellanic_Clouds.jpg

Your homework today is to keep some sort of recording device handy, whether it’s old-fashioned pen and paper or something more modern such as using an app on your cell phone. Set an alarm to go off at regular intervals throughout the day—every fifteen minutes is ideal but every half hour or hour may be more practical for your schedule. The point is to check in with yourself throughout the day to determine if you are on-task or if you’ve become distracted. If you’ve discovered you’ve been distracted, then jot it down so that you can handle the distraction later; then get back on task. Of course sometimes distractions can’t be helped such as when your boss asks you to stop what you’re doing and help with another project. What we’re interested in here is eliminating the distractions over which you do have control.

You can do it!

Post in the comments section about other techniques you’ve come up with for eliminating distractions

I’m so proud of you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Spirituality

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Licht_god.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Licht_god.jpg

 

Yesterday we talked about taking care of yourself. An important piece of this is to also make time for your spiritual needs.

Devotion to a religious practice or following a program of meditation and contemplation are ways to check in with yourself spiritually. If neither one of those appeals to you then simply taking quiet time alone with yourself and your thoughts can be very restorative. Also helpful can be reading the thoughts of a writer whose works touch you profoundly. Reading poetry and listening to music can be deeply moving and inspiring experiences as well.

There are many ways to renew your spirit.

Your homework today is to discover your preferred way of taking care of your spiritual needs. Desiderata, written by Max Ehrmann in 1927, can give you a place to start:

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kirche_Gr%C3%B6ben_Lichtspiel.JPG
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kirche_Gr%C3%B6ben_Lichtspiel.JPG

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.

Especially, do not feign affection.

Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.

Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.

And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

 

Post in the comments section your favorite poem or spiritual phrase that you’d like to share

I’m proud of you.

Your Friend,

Lauren

Take Care of Yourself

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Relax_(3409897731).jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Relax_(3409897731).jpg

When doing your weekly review, it’s important to check in with yourself. How is your mood? Do you find yourself feeling overwhelmed? Are you discouraged? Do you find yourself snapping at family and friends or are you easily frustrated over things that normally wouldn’t bother you in the least?

Answering “yes” to any one of these could indicate several things: you aren’t getting enough sleep; you aren’t eating right; you aren’t breathing deeply and getting enough exercise; you aren’t taking enough time for relaxing and having fun.

Sometimes it’s considered a badge of honor to get only 2 or 3 hours of sleep or to pull an all-nighter. Research shows that making a habit of sleep deprivation jeopardizes physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing. While everyone’s sleep needs are unique, scientists have found that most people need at least seven hours of sleep each night. Try not to skimp on your sleep!

Work on adding fresh fruits and vegetables into your daily diet. Even though you may be pressed for time and you seem to have no choice but to get take-out food, then have fruits and veggies as snacks. Getting proper nutrition can go a long way toward helping improve your wellbeing and outlook on life.

It sounds silly to remind yourself to breathe deeply but studies have shown that most people are shallow breathers. Your brain needs oxygen to think clearly and your muscles, organs, and systems need to be oxygenated as well. Put a reminder on your daily calendar to check in with yourself several times each day and breathe deeply. Fill up your lungs top to bottom, side to side, and front to back. You’ll be amazed at the burst of energy you’ll get from just a few deep breaths regularly throughout the day.

It may seem impossible to fit exercise into your schedule. Perhaps if you think of it as movement that might help you get going. Think of ways to add movement to your day. Of course taking the stairs instead of the elevator and parking your car far away from the office building’s front entrance are two obvious suggestions. Probably there are other small ways to add movement, such as at work instead of bundling your print jobs and going to the print room only once, you can print out each document on its own and get each of them one at a time. I’m sure you can think of other ways to add more activity to your day.

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:MakingAFace.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:MakingAFace.jpg

One of the best things you can do for yourself is relaxing, being silly, and pursuing interests you enjoy. It’s good to laugh, to have fun, to be carefree, even if only for a short time. It may seem frivolous but and a waste of time but studies show that relaxing lowers your blood pressure, improves your memory, improves decision-making, lowers the risk of depression, and helps lessen junk food cravings.

Your homework today is to take time for yourself. Relax and recharge!

You can do it!

Post in the comments section about what you do to relax.

I’m so proud of you!

Your Friend,
Lauren

Crafting a soul-prospering life.