Mindful Mondays – Week 49 – Creativity is the Spice of Life

Creativity, unlike variety, just may be the true spice of life. I was in a meeting recently and I was asking for feedback on a fundraising idea I had. As I spoke, I heard one of the meeting attendees say to another, “someone is a creative thinker”. As a writer, this of course made me smile. In all honesty, it made me warm and fuzzy all over.

One of my life goals is to infuse my creativity into all things I bring into my awareness. I just hadn’t realized it had actually taken effect. Not until it was pointed out to me anyway. The more I write, the more creative I become. So, I suppose it is just natural that my creativity will bleed into all aspects of my life.

Creativity is like having the right key for every door you try to open. It is the magic that allows us to see solutions to obstacles that may be slowing our progress or blocking the way. So, even if you aren’t interested in writing a book or being the next Picasso, boosting your creativity will benefit your everyday life.

Creativity is the Spice of Life

Creativity Boosting Tip #1

Get quiet and imagine. Dream time is never wasted, nor is it frivolous. I like to think that dreaming is to cast your hopes into the future while expecting a positive outcome. Spend time dreaming about your goals, your wishes, your desires, and then take some ‘real life’ action to achieve them. But, nothing in life is achieved without first having dreamed of it. Continue reading

Mindful Mondays – Week 48 – Subliminal Success

Subliminal success. Does that sound a little out of your comfort zone? To be honest, I had only dabbled in the world of subliminal influencing until a few weeks ago. Then I stumbled upon an email with a link to download two free audio trials from Subliminal Guru.

As I write this blog post, I am listening to an acoustic version of my chosen audio from Subliminal Guru. My favorite part of these audio downloads is having the ability to take care of emails, blog posts, and the like, while improving my subconscious mind.

Subliminal Success

I never recommend something I haven’t tried and benefited from. I understand that subliminal messaging may not be for everyone but I would be remiss if I didn’t at the very least share the notion with you. After all, many a successful individual uses subliminals to improve their skill, career, and life. Some of these individuals are sport figures, movie moguls, and inspirational speakers.

The Facts:

  • Subliminal messages are short affirmations that when delivered in a way that has an impact on the subconscious mind, help alter the state of consciousness in an individual..
  • According to the Subliminal Guru website, “Subliminal MP3s work by flooding your subconscious mind with thousands of positive affirmations. These positive affirmations are layered over audio (such as relaxation music, or sounds of nature), using a variety of special techniques. These techniques mean the conscious mind doesn’t get to “hear” these messages, yet the subconscious mind does. By exposing your mind to these affirmations over and over, you help to rewire long-standing thinking patterns – helping you to think more positively, lose weight, or gain confidence, for example.”
  • Subliminal messaging has a strong scientific background. Check out a bit about the science behind it on the Subliminal Guru website.

The Benefits:

  • You can use the audio recordings as background music throughout your day (no headphones required) or you can sit in meditation and focus your thoughts and energies while enjoying your chosen audio.
  • Subliminal messages have the ability to spur an individual into action. A daily subconscious reminder of the goals we are striving for.
  • Subliminal Guru has 350 audio downloads available. Everything from getting fit to becoming a better photographer and so much more in between.
  • These messages in the form of positive affirmations, boost your mood. The audio downloads from Subliminal Guru are positive affirmations. I believe strongly in the power of words and thus daily reminders of love, joy, success etc has an immediate positive affect on your state of mind.
  • In relative terms, subliminal messaging works quickly. You should notice a difference in approximately two weeks time.
  • Each audio download is ten minutes long which makes them easy to fit into a busy day. If you find yourself with more time, then simply put the music on repeat and go about your day.

Subliminal Success

My Conclusion:

  • Most days I need to attend to computer work of some kind. Whether it is checking my email or doing my grocery order, I am seated in front of my computer for at least twenty or so minutes each morning. This means, that I have twenty or so minutes of affirmations effortlessly slated into every day.
  • I really enjoy the acoustic soundtrack and tend to just play it on repeat.
  • Each audio download comes with six music or nature sound tracks so I can change the music to fit the mood I am in.
  • There are bonus brainwave audio tracks (not to be used while driving or operating heavy machinery). The brainwave tracks are perfect for meditation or reflection.
  • If you are anything like me, I have more than one area of my life I would like to focus on and improve. I have created a subliminal playlist, all acoustic of course, with four or five differing subliminal message downloads. This means that in one sitting, I am improving my ability to learn new things quickly, maintaining my attitude of gratitude, releasing limiting thoughts, and waking up with energy.
  • Subliminal messaging only works if you actively choose it do so. Nobody can subliminally sell you something you really don’t want to purchase. Just the same as no subliminal audio will make you an exceptional photographer if you never pick up a camera. You don’t lose control of yourself with subliminal messaging. Instead you enhance the aspects of your life you chose to focus on.

Want to give it a try? Click the image above to download your free subliminal audio files and start improving your subconscious mind today!

Let’s stay in touch. Subscribe to my newsletter for a twice monthly behind the scenes peek at my reading, writing, gratitude filled life.

~

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Mindful Mondays – Week 47 – Burrowing Owl Escape

Burrowing Owl Estate Winery located in Oliver, British Columbia was the first stop on our spring break adventure. As residents of this diverse and beautiful province, Oliver and the surrounding wine country area is far from new to us. Staying at the Burrowing Owl during shoulder season surpassed our expectations and provided us with an exceptional escape from the everyday aspects of life. Our Burrowing Owl stay was an exceptional case of mindfulness.

Burrowing Owl Escape

Special packages are available during shoulder seasons and we purchased a package that included our night’s stay, dinner, and breakfast. If you are considering a visit to BC’s wine region, here are a few of the perks we found while visiting Burrowing Owl before the hustle and bustle of the busy summer season begins.

Peace and Quiet

Did you hear that? Neither did we. The Burrowing Owl Estate was exceptionally quiet and tranquil during our stay. With only one other guest room booked out for the evening, we eased into the calm, pristine, clear air and wandered about the vineyard snapping photos and marveling at the landscape.

A Room of Luxury

A comfortable room is one thing. A fabulously appointed room is quite another. The large guest room boasted a king size bed that when accompanied by the still and silent night, provided a deep and rejuvenating sleep. In addition, the guest room is thoughtfully arranged with a fireplace, a soaking tub, shower, complimentary use of robes and slippers, and a mini fridge to chill any wine purchases from the tasting room.

Take My Breath Away

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Mindful Mondays – Week 46 – Taking Stock of Your Achievements

Achievements are the icing on the cake of life’s goals. Why then do they pass us by, often with barely a nod of acknowledgement at having reached them? You’ve heard the adage, “life is about the journey, not the destination”? I agree completely with this statement. However, it is just as important to take stock of our achievements along the way, if only so that we can recognize just how far we have come.

Taking Stock of Your Achievements

Step 1

If you’re like me, you’ve got a running tally of the goals you are working towards either in your head or on an actual piece of paper. Goals encompass all areas of our lives and thus are varied and extensive. Whether it is losing 10 lbs before bathing suit season arrives or it is to finish writing your first book, all goals add an aspect of looking ahead in our own lives.

So, I want you to think back or find that list of goals you’ve been working on. If you don’t currently have your goals written down, do that now. Taking stock of your achievements involves the act of crossing things off the list and in order to do that you first need to write them down. As a side note, science tells us when we write our goals down we are far more likely to achieve them than goals that are only thought about. Continue reading

Mindful Mondays – Week 45 – 5 Steps to Mindfulness Everyday

Mindfulness is one of those topics we feel we should know a lot about but yet it’s true integration in our lives can feel illusive. What does it mean to be mindful? Do you have images of a Buddhist monk? Or perhaps a woman seated cross-legged, deep in mediation?

The word mindful evokes images of peace, serenity, and  balance. All of which are true to the root of the word. However, if you live the same real world that I do, mindfulness can be hard to grasp. We are pummeled with electronic communications each day. Trying to empty that email inbox is a task set in futility. Things fall through the cracks and for all this over communicating, we’ve become more detached. More detached from one another for certain, but more importantly, more detached from ourselves.

Being mindful is a moment to moment process. Whatever the moment, being present in it is the key. Yes, that sometimes means we are in a moment of sadness, anger, grief, frustration etc. The trick is, to allow ourselves to feel each and every moment so that we can pass through it, growing our understanding as we do.

5 Steps to Mindfulness Everyday

To guide you, here are 5 steps you can incorporate into your day to find a little nugget of mindfulness each and every day. Continue reading

Mindful Mondays – Week 44 – 3 Key Building Blocks For Life

Building blocks for life are those key pieces of information often passed down from generation to generation. You know the ones. They keep you safe. They keep you grounded. And they add joy to our lives in the simplest of ways.

Most of us look both ways before we cross the street. What is likely the presence of a habit now, was once a rule, a building block, that our parents instilled in us as they guided us through our formative years. Life moves at a fast rate and some days we are just barely hanging on through it. So, let’s simplify things and focus on 3 key building blocks we can use to keep us on the straight and narrow of a mindful existence.

Building Block #1

Get back to basics in at least one way every week. For me, this means stepping away from my computer and putting pen to paper for some free writing or character sketching. The act of handwriting is not only a skill that can be easily lost, but also one that forces the mind to work in different ways, often resulting in new ideas.

Want to give this a try? My most favorite pen to write with is the Monami FX Zeta. I must confess, I am quite likely addicted to this pen. I use a smattering of notebooks from spiral bound to old school leather replicas. In reality any pad of paper will do the trick, but if you love stationary like I do, go ahead and splurge on a new notebook, just for the joy of it.

Your turn: Think about what you do on a daily basis that can be transformed into an old, “new” way on occasion. Perhaps you could hand wash the dishes instead of piling them all into the dishwasher every night. Or, maybe you could walk to the grocery store instead of taking the car.

If you are an avid TV watcher, this week pick an evening and ban the TV. Instead, listen to a radio program or a podcast, or read a book. Wink, wink, shameless plug ahead…. You could always pick up Becoming Mrs. Smith, I promise it is a quick read at only 110 pages.

3 Key Building Blocks For Life

Building Block #2

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Mindful Mondays – Week 43 – And the Oscar goes to…

Oscar! Both a man’s name and a celebrated achievement for those in the movie industry. Last night, we popped the pop corn, readied the snacks, and decorated in Hollywood style. We sat down to enjoy the 90th Academy Awards with our bets placed and coveted prizes awaiting the announcement of Best Picture.

Oscar is ninety years old and still so slim, so shiny, so gold. It’s no wonder he is at the center of so many theatrical dreams. So when Jimmy Kimmel, whether out of humor or all seriousness, suggested that the shortest acceptance speech of the night would win a jet ski, the room roared with laughter. Funny as it was, it got me thinking.

Taking out the obvious that most of the audience goers at the Academy Awards can afford to purchase their own jet ski. Would anyone really be so willing, when given the chance, to dismiss that moment of importance? Besides being a honor to receive, Oscar is a symbol of a job well done, a validation of sorts.

The Oscar Goes To...

None of us walk through this world without the help of others so I can’t imagine not taking the time to thank all those that walked beside me should the opportunity present itself. With Hollywood and its productions touching our lives, our news feeds, and our hearts on a daily basis, it is easy to forget the courage it takes to create art. Whether it is a feature length film, a musical score, or editing that makes the difference between a masterpiece and a flop, each person involved in the process steps out on a limb and says, “this is me”!

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Mindful Mondays – Week 42 – Mindfulness in a Snowstorm

Have you ever noticed the magic of being lulled into oblivion by a snowstorm? This past weekend we traveled to Idaho for a Jazz festival that our son was participating in. The first day of travel was pleasant. Though snow adorned the hills and valleys, the roads were clear and safe passage was granted.

The following day as we traveled from our hotel to the festival site, the roads were far less forgiving. A semi truck jack-knifed on an exit ramp was an eerie reminder of what can happen during travel through a snowstorm. It was however, the journey home the next day that made me question one’s ability to be mindful while driving.

White was everywhere. In the air, on the hills, covering the highway. The white out conditions were mesmerizing at best and treacherous at worst. I will admit, I am a nervous passenger by nature. Yet even I found myself being sucked into the vacuum that was the lull of the snowstorm.

Being mindful is often thought of as taking time throughout the day to reflect, be still, and be present. As we crept our way along the highway like a trail of ants destined for the same ant hill, I was struck by the notion of how thoughts, goals, and potential deadlines might be the motivating force for others traveling the same roads.

Mindfulness in a Snowstorm

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Mindful Mondays – Week 41 – The First Draft… Or a Chinese Dinner

First drafts are a lot like other challenges in life. So often I am told by those that do not write, how impossible they think it would be to write a book. I am confident though, that like any challenge, if the desire exists, the challenge can be met. I must admit that there are some aspects of writing that come easy to me. Others though, not so much. Most of my struggle can be found during the first draft stage of writing.

The first draft of any project is somewhat like preparing a special birthday dinner. Let me explain. This past December, my son requested a Chinese dinner for his 18th birthday celebration. The list included sweet and sour pork, lemon chicken, chow mein, beef and broccoli and the almighty fortune cookie among others. No problem you may think. Take out is only ten minutes up the road my husband pointed out. Me, being the “Mom” and wanting to make the day a special one, decided to make the feast from scratch.

After all how many of these milestones will we have left to celebrate with a young man on the verge of adulthood? This doesn’t take into account the fact that one, I don’t eat much in the way of Asian cuisine. Two, I have never attempted to make such a meal. And three, and only upon reflection after the fact, I do not have enough stove top burners to pull off such a feat.

So there I sat, a few weeks before the big day. I scoured the internet for the perfect recipes. My grocery list resembled something of a foreign language quest. I visited seven, count them, seven stores in search of ingredients I had never known to exist. Pulling my hair out, I sought guidance from store staff only to be greeted with a blank stare and a shrugging of shoulders.

The First Draft... Or A Chinese Dinner

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Mindful Mondays – Week 40 – The Rule of 70/30

I have a rule. It is called my 70/30 rule. I can’t remember if I heard the notion from someone far wiser than myself or if the realities of life taught it to me. Either way, the 70/30 rule simply states, in life there is likely to be 70% of experiences you enjoy to 30% of those you do not.

This rule can be applied to virtually any situation. Life, work, parenting, and even play offers us a percentage of the same balance. I have discovered that if the mark of 70% of enjoyment is reached, the willingness to endure the remaining 30% of necessary tasks is accepted by most individuals.

The Rule of 70/30

This morning, I watched an Olympic athlete very graciously accept accolades for his achievement of a gold medal in Pyeong Chang. He spoke of the hard work it took to reach his goal. Then he spoke about the level of stress he had endured up to his last ski event. His words and body language both confirmed the extreme level of stress he was still recovering from. Continue reading