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Posts Tagged ‘new year’

Are You Ready for Your Gift of Time?

Saturday, December 31st, 2016

You are soon to be gifted with a New Year, all the time in the world. The end of the year is bittersweet. Time is up before the “To Dos” are done. That list you carefully wrote out in January of this year, of all you would accomplish, may require little editing to become your 2017 list just a few days from now. Frustrating, isn’t it?

Mary Ellen & BrianBrian Tracy has been a mentor of mine for many years, and is a recognized authority on achievement. He recommends this time of year that you list the reasons why you didn’t fully achieve the results you intended for each of the things on your list. In taking responsibility for the outcome, the culprit cited, more often than not, is Time.

Yes, you’ve heard we all have the same amount of time, but why do we think it’s never enough? The answer is in the way you think about time. To get you started with some more effective thinking, just in time for 2017, Brian Tracy is sharing the first chapter from this latest book, “Master Your Time, Master Your Life.”

You can get it here now.

Wouldn’t it be great to have a totally new list and look forward to accomplishing it all in the New Year? Don’t waste another minute. Be the Master of your time. You’ll be glad you did.

What New for You?

Thursday, January 1st, 2015

ballAre you overwhelmed with all the advice to make your New Year resolutions today? To set your big goals for 2015? It happens every year- as predictable as the dropping of the Waterford crystal ball in Times Square.

And every year, it sounds like such great idea, doesn’t it? Begin the New Year in a new way. Replace those bad habits and failures of last year with a renewed zeal to move forward. Climb that mountain, loose that weight, quit that dead end job.

How many years have you thought of those great ideas?

Ideas, resolutions, goals.
On January 1, they are all the same; they represent an aspiration to be the best you can be.
But by January 31, or the 10th or even the 2nd, we realize the difference.

Ideas without action are daydreams.

How do you take that great idea beyond the daydream state?
Ask yourself if it’s what you really want in your life.

Can you see yourself doing, being or having the life experience you imagine?
Wouldn’t it be nice to see the view from the mountaintop?
Wouldn’t it feel wonderful to wear your skinny jeans?
Wouldn’t it be glorious to have your own business?

Sure, but can you see yourself taking the journey to get there?
What one action can you take today to begin that journey?
More importantly, what single action will you take every day going forward?

Make it doable, make it fun.
Buy the hiking shoes. Skip the cola today. Look into getting a business license.

Life is more enjoyable when you’re moving forward.

The turning point of an idea is committed action.
Before you know it, it’s a resolution.
You could even call it a goal.

It’s a New Year.
There’s no better time than today to live your new life.

You Have the Habit of Health

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

BeautifulBlueDay two of this new year. What positive habit have you incorporated into your daily routine? In my last post, I said the most effective way to add a new positive habit is to link it to a habit you already have, like reading a few lines of a book while you brush your teeth.

Today I’ll tell you about a habit that may be new for you, but it’s one that we all can benefit by implementing. A few years ago, I was having some health challenges that included severe migraine headaches. I went to see my doctor and she immediately observed I was dehydrated. It showed in my blood work and also on my skin that looked dry with deep lines appearing on my face.

Oh course she recommended drinking more water. I visualized a row of eight 8 oz. glasses of water on the countertop that I would never drink in a day. But I really wanted to relieve those headaches and not look so drawn out.

Dehydration is a condition that affects almost everyone. Our bodies are up to 65% water, so when we do not replenish the fluid that we loose naturally through perspiration and urination, a large part of us literally “goes away,” and our body suffers. If you neglected to put oil in your car, think about those grinding gears as the engine tries to function.

Now I rarely have a headache and when I do, I know the reason why. What’s the easy solution that keeps me running smoothly?

Link the habit of drinking water to a habit I already have. Every morning as I pour my cup of coffee, I pour a large glass of water and drink that down before indulging myself with coffee. After six or eight hours of not drinking while you sleep, you are especially dehydrated in the morning.

One glass down, seven to go. Whenever you use the bathroom, you are in the habit of washing your hands. Link to that habit, drinking a glass of water. Whatever goes out, must be replenished. That will add another four of five glasses per day. If you’re not releasing liquid that often, that means you’re not drinking enough.

Another way to ensure hydration is to always ask for a glass of water when you eat out and don’t leave the restaurant until you drink it all. This also works with your meals at home. Have a glass of water along with your usual beverage, especially when drinking alcohol which tends to be dehydrating.

That’s seven glasses. How can you possibly down another? As you go to bed at night, link to your evening ritual pouring a glass of water to set on your nightstand. Take a sip before closing your eyes and any time you wake up in the night. You will wake up refreshed and less dehydrated.

There, you did it!

Your choices become your habits of health.

 

“All human actions have one or more of these seven causes: chance, nature, compulsions, habit, reason, passion, desire.” Aristotle

No Resolutions this New Year

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

You’re off the hook. No New Years resolutions are required this year. Resolutions, no matter how well your intention, don’t work. They’re too big, don’t feel natural and sometimes daunting. There is a much more effective way to begin your new year, one that guarantees success.

surprised babyIt’s called a Habit. Now before you run through a litany of excuses, think of all the bad habits developed over your life time that have been impossible to kick.

Biting your nails.

Being late.

Embellishing the truth.

That just shows you that habits, once adopted do not just go away.

What about the good habits? At some point in your life a parent drilled into you the habit of brushing your teeth every day. Now you naturally perform that habit without thinking.

After being embarrassed by a college roommate when I hadn’t shaved my legs in a week, I decided to make shaving my legs every day a habit. That simple action became and still is part of my daily grooming ritual. It makes me feel better about myself.

So back to this New Year. There may be something in your mind. You know, if you did it every day, your life would improve. But how, in your busy day, do you fit in one more thing?

The secret to creating a new, positive habit is to assign it a time slot.

The easiest way to find time is to link the action to a habit you already have.

Say you want to read an inspirational or self help book this year. No time as you rush through your morning- or is there? Prop a book up in your bathroom and read a few lines as you brush your teeth. Totally painless because you’re standing there, thinking about something anyway. Your day will undoubtedly be more pleasant.

You may have thought of resolving this year to be a better conversationalist, or to meet new people. No time to join a club or church. Instead make a habit of speaking to everyone you see, in the elevator or passing on the street. Just a hello or small talk is enough to stretch your social boundaries. It will also make the recipient of your gesture feel better about themselves. No telling where this could lead.

What else would you like to do in the New Year? Be more grateful? Add that to your nighttime ritual, just before you turn out the lights. Jot down a note to someone you appreciate- just a line or two will do. That simple habit will release endorphin into your system and you will sleep peacefully. And imagine the smile on their face when they open the mail box.

Our habits create our life.  Only you create your habits.

 

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then is not an act, but a habit.”  Aristotle

Prediction for the New Year

Sunday, December 29th, 2013

As this year draws to a close, our final rainbow color, Violet, is reflected in December’s frosty view. The days grow shorter and daylight is precious. The long shadows on the snowy ground appear to cast a violet hue. Soft, tranquil, still.

 clock faceViolet, found on the lowest arc of the rainbow, is the color comprised of the shortest wavelengths of light that our eyes can see. Ultra-violet is the term for the wavelengths of light beyond our view.

Is it coincidence that the Color of the Year for 2014 announced this very month happens to be Radiant Orchid? You’re already seeing the hue in spring clothing and decorative home décor. This close cousin of Violet will grow in popularity, I predict.

Why? You see, Violet or Radiant Orchid, are colors associated with enlightenment. In Eastern belief, the Chakras, or power centers of the body are assigned a gradation of color, much like the rainbow. The highest color at the top of the head, Violet, is associated with the sixth sense.

The popularity of colors often reflects what is happening in the culture as well as the collective psyche of our planet. The color experts that predict the yearly colors and Pantone, the company that made the Radiant Orchid choice, have an uncanny way of knowing what we are or will be thinking about.

In the coming year I believe we are all ready for a more enlightened way of seeing our lives and responding to the needs of our planet. Uncommon Violet may be just what we need to see, to capture our attention and look at things in a new way.

“Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.”   Mark Twain

Bleeding Hearts and Others

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

bleeding hearts Look closely at this marvel of botanical nature. A favorite of my Grandmother's, this delicate flower held a place of prominence on her front porch. Surrounded by greenery and blossoms of every description, nothing could compare to the Bleeding Heart.

A confusing name to me as a small child. I watched it closely for red droplets like those I saw when I scuffed my knee. The tiny, heart shaped blooms hung precariously from the stem, but did not bleed.

As we enter the second month of this year, we leave the pale pink of the new year, that top edge of the rainbow. Like the edge of the Bleeding Heart transitions to deeper hues at its center, January's newness leads us in to the red month of February.

How appropriate this month our thoughts turn to hearts of another sort, Valentine hearts of the reddest hue. There are roses and heart shaped boxes of chocolates to look forward to this month. Are they going to be pink or red? Red is a deeper commitment than pink.

Pink is puppy love.

Red is passionate love.

Pink looks cheerful.

Red is powerful.

You started this year with thoughts or even resolutions about how you want your life to be. They were delicate pink in the beginning. Now, it's February. Have your intentions deepened? Are they fully formed and powered by the red of your passion?

I've noticed some of mine have drifted like pink feathers in the wind. Those I categorize as "wouldn't it be nice" intentions. Pretty to look at, yet weightless.

But February has a way or sorting priorities. What you are still doing by February to advance toward your dream, now that is where your heart lies. Your Bleeding Heart holds firmly to your core values.

Count your delight in shades of red.

 

"The moment you have in your heart this extraordinary thing called love and feel the depth, the delight, the ecstasy of it, you will discover that for you the world is transformed."
Jiddu Krishnamurti

Red on the Horizon

Sunday, January 20th, 2013

You've had three weeks to ease into this new year. Attracted by the palest pink of dawn, we've begun on a year long color journey at the top edge of the rainbow where color begins.

calm seaBut look at the horizon. The color is getting stronger. No longer pastel, no longer so new, January has set the tone. Are new habits in place? Are there boulders in the way?

Success requires commitment.

To an idea.

To a lifestyle.

To a color.

We each have color memories from childhood. The fond ones become the basis for our favorite colors. Unpleasant remembrances of color can form a lifelong feeling of detest for a certain hue.

A happy color memory for me is the amazement I felt as my aunt, an accomplished cake decorator, starting with pure white frosting, carefully added drops of deeply colored liquid that produced a magnificently colored result.

My favorite was the single drop of ruby red liquid that transformed the ordinary white to the most luscious shade of deep pink. She created bountiful roses, Cinderella's dress, and an Easter bunny's nose with this amazing color, festooned on cakes for every occasion.

No surprise ruby red and deep pink are two of my most revered colors.

Look at that horizon again. The hue of late January is almost there, deep pink. That's what keeps me going this month, the realization that this color journey is getting ever closer to a place of contentment.

What do you see on the horizon for yourself?

 

"I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles."
 Audrey Hepburn


How Soon We Forget

Sunday, January 13th, 2013

Oak Trees In the Snow at DawnAs the January thaw visited many parts of the country this past week, we are reminded how nature has the power to delight us. The rise in temperature, the rays of sunshine, restore our faith that winter's bleakness is not forever. As if to say, it's only temporary, glimpses of green peak through the thinning blanket of white covering the landscape.

Yet, a drop of a few degrees, jogs the memory and brings a shiver to the body. Oh yes, it's still January. The moisture on the bare tree limbs is transformed to sparkling frost. This month of new beginnings is not half over so there's plenty of time to forge your path through snow or not, into 2013.

Revisiting my intention for the new year, I prefer intention to resolution, I'm eager to assess, how am I doing?

I've learned that unless an intention, a goal, or even a good idea is kept in the forefront of your mind, it tends to disappear into the trivialities of life. It's only been a couple weeks. Hmmm. How soon we forget. Now what was that intention? Oh yes…

Let's live a fun and fulfilling life.

What has been fun so far this year?

I'm happy to say I have added more fun to my daily routine this new year. Spending time with friends, going to an amazing play, trying a new restaurant, making travel plans, beginning a book I've wanted to read. To me, all fun activities.

Yet without a conscious effort to make time for pleasurable pursuits, I have, in the past, let many opportunities pass me by.

I'm too busy.

Something else is more important.

Maybe next time.

You know what? You always have time for fun. You need to make time for fun. Fun is the magic elixir that takes care of the other half of my new intention.

Have I felt fulfilled by my life?

What feels most fulfilling to me is making connections with people who remind me of my purpose in this life. To make your life more enjoyable. If you're reading this, I hope I've done that for you because, if I'm true to myself, I am fulfilled.

How are you doing on your resolution or intention or your wish for this new year? Remember what it is. Hold it often in your mind and in your heart.

Let's have a fun and fulfilling life!

 

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget that you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
Maya Angelou

A Week of Progress

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Doesn't seem like only a week ago, we were toasting the New Year and, with bright eyes, we were looking forward to the new possibilities for 2013. How's that going for you?

woman on dockOther than writing last year's date, have you released all that held you back, the doubts, the "what ifs," the can't be done attitude you repeatedly retreated to when confronted by a new idea?

Or is this first week of the new year a continuum of last year's excuses?

If I only had more time.

If I didn't have these other responsibilities.

The flip of the calendar page means nothing if you're not ready to turn the page and begin the next chapter of your life. 

Taking the lessons learned in the previous twelve months, garnering the best advice, and listening to the still small voice inside yourself, your new year will take you far beyond the last. For many years I have followed this significant tradition.

On New Year' Day, I excitedly open my new planner and record the pertinent information from my last planner. Birthdays, anniversaries, and other dates to remember are filled in, along with appointments and schedules committed to in the future.

I then review the notes I made in the previous year; ideas, observations and goals.

Are they still relevant?

What was accomplished?

What needs more attention this year?

This January ritual is helpful to organize the coming year. Yet it is also an exercise is congratulating myself for what I have done and how I have progressed over the past year.

I am eager to fill in the new pages with my plans and to document each day's accomplishments. Acknowledge all that gets you where you are today.

Remember this New Year is only days old. The dawn is still barely lighting your morning sky. Be kind to yourself and begin today to plan your life this year.

This calls for something new. Be new.


"Life stands before me like an eternal spring with new and brilliant clothes."
Carl Friedrich Gauss

Up In Flames

Sunday, January 6th, 2013

A New Year tradition at the Unity Spiritual Center is a ceremony called "Burning Bowls." In this early part of the year, as we tend to look at our life with the intention of improving, our self inspection also calls attention to frailties of character and bad habits that have impeded our progress. New Year's resolutions, after all, are all about making changes.

abstract fire on blackThe only way to improve is to change.

The best way to change is to release the things in our life that do not serve us.

The tradition of the Burning Bowls is a three step process. First, write down on paper those thoughts and feelings that have gotten in your way the past year. What, if no longer in your life, would free you to be the person you want to be?

Some examples may be-

Self doubt

Fear

Criticism

A sense of lack

Make your list truthfully. It's for your eyes only.

Next, light a flame in a fireproof container, a burning bowl, a fireplace or chiminea. Consciously and with intention release the paper into the fire.

As your words are consumed by the cleansing flames, feel the lightness in your body. Those troubling thoughts and feelings have been released. You now have the space in your heart and in your conscious mind to replace what held you back with what you intend to create this new year.

Write a list of the things you will accomplish. With nothing to inhibit your progress, what unlimited goals can you create? Include the attributes that you now claim as your own to help you on your way.

Confidence

Courage

Gratitude

Abundance

This list describes the new you, free from whatever used to hold you back. A new You for the New Year.

The final step is to write a note of gratitude to yourself and to a higher power for the accomplishment of all you intend to be and to do. Write the note with the feelings and enthusiasm you would have in reaching your goals.

Seal this note in an envelope to be opened at the end of this year. Tuck it away with your holiday decorations, or give it to a friend who will return it to you eleven months from now.

Why? To experience the sense of amazement and gratitude when you read your note. The person you aspire to be is the person who will be reading your thank you note.

A few weeks ago, I opened and read the note I wrote to myself in January of last year. There are no coincidences. What I sought and was grateful for receiving at that time, is now in my life.

What you imagine, what you intend, you create.

Release what does not serve you and create the life you choose. Let the power of the flame obliterate the obstacles.

Your own power to create is limitless.

 

"Sometimes you get the best light from a burning bridge."
Don Henley


Tell Me More

Mary Ellen Lapp reveals how the colors we wear, and the colors that surround us, even the color of the car we drive, impact out self image and affects how we are seen by the people around us.

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