Conquer Your Fears

You don’t drown by falling in the water. You drown by staying there.                             ~ Author Unknown

What are your dreams? Desires? Hopes? Wants? We all have them. How many of us do something about them? How many of us put ourselves out there and take a chance or a step forward toward those goals? I bet, not many. I sure don’t. It is safer that way. Sometimes doing nothing is comfortable and safe. It feels like slipping into a comfortable pair of sweat pants. Here, we are in our comfort zone. It is relaxing and there are no fears.

What would it feel like to jump out of your comfort zone? A little stressful maybe. Your heart would race. You might not know what to say, what to do, or even how to get started. All the fears and doubts you have would come to the surface. Those fears and doubts will try to hold you back and put you right back in your comfort zone. A person has to be stronger than their own comfort zone.

I can’t remember the last time I put myself out of my comfort zone. Well, I have very recently, but I am talking about before that! It is a concept many of us are not comfortable with. We are not doing ourselves a favor by sitting idle on our hands. We think we are, but we are not. I have two things that I want to do with my life before it is over. I have wanted it for some time, but being in my comfort zone is easier. I realized that not doing anything about it is not doing me any good.

One, I want to help the elderly and disabled by starting my own caregiver business. I have a huge need in me to help others. I think I can do a better job of it than if I work for another agency. I have done that and most agencies don’t know what they are doing.  It is a lot of work starting your own business. I do understand that. However, when I came across this idea, it felt like God was speaking to me personally. It felt like my calling. I sat on the idea for a while. Scared. Not really knowing what to do or how to get started. Leaving it alone was safer. Until now. I am taking the beginning steps of making this dream a reality.

Two, I want to have one piece of writing published before I die. It doesn’t matter if it is a small paragraph in Readers Digest, my Lions Club magazine, a short story, or a novel. It doesn’t matter if has a lot of publicity attached to it or not. It does not matter if I receive any kind of money in return for it or not. I just want something of mine published before I die. I have known this dream for a while and once again, it is safer to sit on the idea than to work towards it. I knew it was time to do something about it when I saw an add in my local newspaper about a writing class being offered. I actually was going to pass it up, but my husband encouraged me to sign up for it. Instead of the other way around, he is the one who actually gave me a talking to and told me to go for it!

So here I am, working towards the two things I want to accomplish before my time on this Earth is done. Instead of others passing me by on the way to their dreams, I am now walking right along with them. Conquer your fears. Take a chance. You never know what will happen if you don’t.

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Shifting Our Focus

“Life seems sometimes like nothing more than a series of losses, from beginning to end. That’s the given. How you respond to those losses, what you make of what’s left, that’s the part you have to make up as you go.”

– Katherine Weber

I came across this quote today and it hit me like a slap in the face. I wasn’t searching for quotes; it was just there like it was meant for me to read. I really started to think about my life, my thoughts, and my attitude towards certain things. For the last number of years (too many years to put an exact number on), I have said to myself, “my life is a series of losses.” It is all I have been focusing on. My losses. My life has been one loss after another. Whether it is a loss of a loved one, the loss of a job, the loss of money, or a number of other things; my life is a series of losses. However, I am not the only one who is alive on this planet. So many others feel the same way as I do. So many others have it worse off than I do. Our eyes are sometimes open only to our pain and closed to the pain other people go through. We get lost in our own pain all too often. We forget what matters. We give up. Once we start shifting our focus to others and helping others, our own lives improve as well. Not only do we make someone else feel better, but we feel better for helping someone else. I will slip and lose my focus from time to time, but before my life ends, I am hoping to help other people see things in a more positive light. After all, isn’t that what we were put on this planet for?

Six Ways To A More Meaningful Life

“It was not the feeling of completeness I so needed, but the feeling of not being empty.” – Jonathan Safran Foer

My walk Sept 11 2013 015Do you ever wake up to start your day and feel like pulling the covers back over your head so you can go back to sleep? This is common from time to time, but feeling this way a lot is not an easy life to live. The feeling of emptiness that humans have is not an easy pattern to break, but it is possible. All humans need a sense of purpose or meaning to get out of bed each day. Some have more trouble with this. Others it comes easy. Whether you are one to climb out of bed most day with a purpose or not so much, read on to find ways to stop the empty feeling inside and bring more meaning to your life.

1. Change things up in your daily or weekly routine. Some routines are hard to change. For example, taking care of your kids/family, work, school, and appointments are just a few examples of everyday tasks that are difficult to change. However, volunteering, joining a club, and finding a new hobby, are a few examples of doing something different. Meeting new people and doing new things introduces a new purpose in your life.

2. Take control of your life. Are you doing things that you want to do or are you doing things because your family or society says you have to? Are you studying what you want in college or are you studying what your parents want you to or what your friends are studying? Do you have the job you want or do you have a job because society says you should have this job? Are you doing things that you truly want to do or are you doing things that just looks good to other people? Take a break, a breath, and determine what it is you want to do with your life, not what anyone else wants you to do.

3. Stay away from the habits that make you feel empty. This seems obvious, but it is easy to hang around with the wrong crowd, drink & eat too much, watch too much TV, play too many video games, etc… These harmful habits play a role in why people have these empty feelings. Have a healthy lifestyle and that will in turn, make you feel better.

4. Spend time with people who truly support you and want what is best for you. This may be family, friends, church friends, or co-workers. Stay away from people who do not have your best interest at heart.

5. Consider adopting a pet. If you have the time and money, pets are a wonderful way to bring a smile to your day. They know how to bring purpose to your everyday life.

6. Seek help. Whether it is a trusted family member, friend or a therapist, find someone to talk to. Talking to someone you trust and keeping a journal, can help you feel better and find purpose and meaning to your everyday life.

These few steps can help build your life back to a feeling of fullness. Adding these positive changes to you life, plus some of your own, will contribute a well balanced life.

Today Is A New Day

Love this! So true. We all should remember this, myself included. Going through our day to day lives it is hard to remember to seize opportunities to improve our life, but if we do, it is so worth it.

Monday Morning Inspiration

photo credit: YoungToymaker via photopin cc photo credit: YoungToymaker via photopincc

“‎Today is a new day. It’s a day you have never seen before and will never see again. Stop telling yourself the ‘same crap, different day’ lie! How many days has that lie stolen from you? Seize the wonder and uniqueness of today! Recognize that throughout this beautiful day, you have an incredible amount of opportunities to move your life into the direction you want it to go.” – Steve Maraboli

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Go Through With Courage, Not Fearfulness

Mary Anne Radmacher - Courage“Courage is being scared to death & saddling up anyway.” –  John Wayne

So many people struggle through their day with one thing or another. People suffering is all around. It is on the news, in local communities, on social media, in ones families, etc… Just by turning on the TV or the computer, one can read, hear, and listen to people’s problems. Everyone has them. No one goes through life without struggling with something. Sounds depressing, doesn’t it? There is another side to all of this. So many people do struggle through their day, but most of them do not give up. Most of them have the courage and the strength to keep going and go after their dreams. Most of them want a better life and take small steps to improve their life or make their life happier. Most people have the strength to deal with bad news with courage. Whatever people are dealing with on a day to day basis, depressing as it can be, people get through it and move on.

Courage does not always scream out. It is not always visible. Sometimes it is hard to see, but it is there. People get through their day. They are able to deal with family struggles, work struggles, and other personal struggles. People have many tribulations thrown at them, but most have the courage to deal with them on a positive basis. This is a world filled mostly with strength, not weakness. It is a world filled mostly with courage, not giving up. It is a world filled mostly with satisfaction and pleasure, not anger. Next time there is a depressing situation on the news, in the local communities, in someone’s family, look on the bright side. Turn the situation around and look at it from a different angle. The world is filled mostly with good people, not bad people.

How to Think More Positively

“Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.” – Abraham Lincoln

How many people tell us to think positively? It’s good for you everyone says. Or are some of you the one’s telling others to think more positively or look on the bright side? We all go through tough times and times where we want to quit whatever is getting us down. it’s too much work, it’s too hard, it’s not worth it. It doesn’t matter what our excuse is, sometimes we just want to give up. There are a few circumstances where giving in may be worth it. However, most times we need to keep on going.

For me personally, I have always thought negativity rather than positively. Could be because of my personality, life circumstances, the way I grew up, or none of those things. Most people around me know I want to get into freelance writing. The more I look into it, study it, and read about it, the more I want to keep going. I find it fits my skills, my personality, and my wants and needs in a job. It is also easy to get stressed out over. It is hard work and won’t come easy. Yesterday was one of those days where I thought for a second to give in and do something else. Only for a second though! I asked myself, what else would I do? What else interests me? After coming up with a few things, this interests me the most. I am at the point where I am doing a lot of reading concerning freelance writing. Not only is it interesting to me, but stressful as well.

I came across the quote I used at the start of this blog this morning. It started me on a path of positive thinking. I have always enjoyed learning about Abraham Lincoln. I enjoy watching movies & TV shows concerning him. I enjoy reading about him. I have read many interesting and positive quotes said by him. It made me think of how many people tell others to look on the bright side of things, but do not follow it themselves. I don’t think Abraham Lincoln was one of those people. I have been trying to learn from that and increase my positive thinking. It increases one’s mood, decreases stress and has health benefits. Positive thinking doesn’t always come easy, but it’s worth a try!

I thought of a list of things to help myself think more positively. I hope they help others needing it, not just myself.

1. Just do it! Don’t think anything differently. Just think positively.

2. Ignore what others think of you.

3. Use positive words & thoughts such as, “I can” and “I am able.”

4. Smile and laugh more.

5. Get rid of negative thoughts.

6. Think about a successful outcome.

7. Read positive books and affirmations.

8. Exercise.

9. Sit up straight. It will improve self confidence.

10. Don’t watch the news too much.

I hope that these few tips draw out the negative talk and draw in the positive talk for my readers. It is difficult at times to always look on the bright side of things. We are not always able to do that. When we find ourselves feeling negative energy around us, look at these few tips I listed and think positively!

When One Door Closes, Another Opens

When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.  – Helen Keller

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. It wasn’t supposed to be this hard. It wasn’t supposed to turn out this way. How many of us have said that to ourselves at some point in our lives? All of us, I assume. Growing up I had this vision of a perfect, happy, no problem life. Well, no major problems. I pictured myself doing well in school, doing well in college, getting a job I could be happy with, getting married & having it be easy, having kids, no major problems, the white picket fence outside the house, and of course owning a cat or two or as it turned out, three. How many of our visions actually turn out perfectly? How many of them turn out exactly liked we planned and hoped?

I have learned that I am not alone when it comes to visions and plans not working out. Life happens. Life intervenes. I did go to school and college and enjoyed it, but did not do well. I wasn’t the smart kid. I could have been if I applied myself. I have had jobs, but nothing I was extremely happy at. Does that job exist? Some say yes. I could have had that job if I applied myself. I did get married, but of course, it is not perfect. What marriage is? We tried to have kids, but going through loss after loss, we gave up. My point in all of this is, I had this perfect vision of my older life when I was younger and nothing has turned out the way I visioned it. It wasn’t supposed to turn out this way, but it did.

I decided to stop searching for answers as to why things did not work out. I decided to simply live and let go. Life has this funny little way of actually turning out. When a problem arises, nine times out ten, it works itself out. Either the problem is fixed or I accept it for what it is and move on. It is true what the say; when one door closes, another one opens. Looking back on my life, I realize that has happened many times in my life. I just didn’t see it until now. I have been going through my life on a fast pace, worrying, and not paying attention to detail. It is amazing when you start to slow your life down, stop worrying so much, and pay attention to your life’s wants and needs, things do work themselves out. Instead of saying, “it wasn’t supposed to turn out this way,” accept it for what it is, learn from it, let it go, and move on. Everything happens for a reason. It was supposed to happen that way. We were supposed to go through that, learn from it, and continue on with our lives. When one door closes, another one opens.