75 Questions: Day 45

There are 75 days before the triumphant start of a new Gregorian calendar year. So, for the next 30 days (Monday – Sunday) the blog postings will ask you one question. That question may inspire you, it may perplex you, it may anger you, or it may tickle you.  It’s about the strength in you. The intent of the 75 questions is to probe, to prompt a reaction, to get you to stretch, to press beyond tradition or boundaries, to think broader, to break free, and then give a thoughtful answer to the one question of the day.

The overall intent of the 75 questions is to capture change. The questions are to be a catalyst for inner change that leaves you feeling more gifted, alive, powerful, intrigued, and authentic.

Oprah Quote                                                  Illustration: Jen Troyer from Oprah.com

When these amazing emotions are opened up within you (they already exist), you change and your world changes and the whole world changes with you.

Question 45: What is your calling?

12 Gifts for You

As you absorb the active spirit of giving, don’t forget to give to your inner self. It is important to pause and add your name to the gift list. Gifts oftentimes bestow happiness, especially when genuine thoughtfulness is attached to it. Then, it is not the gift or the cost of the item but the care and kindness that is associated with it.

Make it a practice and often used priority in your life to give a gift to yourself.

“Each day provides its own gifts.” ~Marcus Aurelius

12 Gifts for You:

1. Joy – greet every experience with joy. The feelings of appreciation, gratitude and acquiesce, regardless of the circumstance, are invigorating life learning moments. Joy gives you wings.

2. Affirmation – say “yes” to life. Affirm your ability to direct your life. You are the captain of your life ship; guide yourself to whatever you desire. Claim your gifts; the universe is saturated with gems of inestimable value that are just for you.

3. Confirmation – verifications are right in front of your face when you are thinking about and doing the right thing. The available gift is for you to recognize the confirmations that automatically follow right action.

4. Understanding – in all of your giving, get the gift of understanding. Kindness is the bedrock of understanding. Stand on the principled rock of kind understanding, people will listen.

5. Excellence – doing your best, making excellence your signature, is a legacy gift. The imprint mark of excellence that is associated with your life is an eternal evidence of your life.

6. Confidence – go boldly in the direction you have chosen. Respect your choice(s) to the fullest. Find your way by this spotlight and “see the dawn before the rest of the world,” says Oscar Wilde.

7. Exploration – the world awaits your discovery. The excitement and enlightenment that accompanies exploration are priceless gifts.

8. Silence – quiet introspection causes the world to listen. Allow the gift of silence to guide your ultimate happiness and success. Calm mindfulness is a balm.

9. Openness – there are lessons to learn every day. Be open to teachable moments, these innocent gifts guide you closer to source.

10. Compassion – first never do harm. Gentle compassion to you is a gift that gives premium, perpetual joy. Give yourself the gift of compassion and then continuously give it away to others.

11. Peace – let the soft flowing water of peace buoy your life. Regardless of what happens, and many things will intrude upon your peace, quickly restore your calm with the gift of peace.

12. Love – love you! Love every piece of you; love your mind, heart, body, soul. Love you and all of the essence that composes this priceless pearl that you are. Love you in all of your uniqueness, there is nothing better than love.

  • Gifts (valleyroadrambler.wordpress.com)

Give Yourself a Gift

It does not matter where you are or who you are-today is give yourself a gift day. This is important since you seldom pause long enough to be a self-gift giver. The world is locked in ambition, activity and automaton so much so that YOU are often forgotten, but not today. Today, and any other day you want to repeat this, give yourself a gift.

Make this pledge today: (You must practice this all day. This pledge can be repeated any time).

I give myself the gift of____________________

Don’t over think this-just give yourself a gift. Simple. (HINT) You may have more than one gift today.

Suggestions:

I give myself the gift of patience

I give myself the gift of truth

I give myself the gift of meditation

I give myself the gift of relaxation

You get the point, give yourself an inner character trait that strengthens your state of consciousness; please try to stay away from materialism – materials or longing for external stuff does nothing to advance who you are a person; one who is free from anger, envy, unhappiness, jealousy, sexism, or any other ego-centered feeling.

Instead, give yourself a gift that confirms and affirms the gift that you are.

Please feel free to share in a blog comment the gift(s) that you gave to yourself today on his blog. It would be exciting and healing to acknowledge your gift and pass it on to others as a gift from you.

Live your gift today!

52 Ways to BOSS It or TOSS It

 52 Ways to BOSS It or TOSS It©

 (A once a week (or daily) method to live your best life.) You can add enriching control in your life, do it NOW!

  1. Plan ahead.  Keep pantry staples list, keep gas tank at least ½ full, make copies of keys. Check it off.
  2. Say NO!  Don’t over schedule your time with extra events, projects, or invitations.
  3. Get up fifteen minutes earlier and/or go to bed fifteen minutes earlier.  Give yourself a big hug.
  4. Don’t procrastinate.  Do it NOW! Schedule projects, events, vacations, or even dinners ahead of time.
  5. Prepare for the morning the night before.  Plan the first hour or two of the next day.
  6. Write it down!  Don’t rely on your memory.  Write each appointment on a calendar on in your PDA.
  7. Learn.  Take a magazine, inspirational book or tapes/CDs with you while you wait.
  8. Add $8.80. Buy an extra book of postage stamps.  Then your mail/bills won’t be delayed.
  9. Get a good night’s sleep or take a short power nap on the weekend.  20 minutes of real rest is divine.
  10. Ring, ring. Let the answering machine/message service take the call.  But promptly retrieve messages.
  11. Slow down!  It is permissible to stop and smell the roses, swing in the park, swim or relax.
  12. Simplify!  Enlarge your file 13 (garbage box) so that you keep the things that you only need.
  13. Give gifts.  Give away good items that you no longer need or want.  Someone else may treasure it.
  14.  Make personal or family time a priority.  Build in some “me or us” time every day.
  15.  Make one night a week family fun.  Do something exciting with a member of your family.
  16. Turn off the television/video games.  Tune into yourself and each other for real conversation.
  17. Adopt a hobby.  Paint, build, exercise, practice an instrument, or make crafts together.
  18. Schedule household assignments.  Create a simple reward system.  Create a checklist.
  19. Volunteer!  Research and commit to a volunteer project.
  20. Laugh, laugh, laugh!  Keep a jokes file or watch a funny movie.  Laughter is medicine for the soul.
  21. Stretch.  Take mini stretch breaks after long meetings or sits.  Stretch and breathe deep.
  22. Write weekly goals.  Look for gaps and over commitment.  Eliminate tension builders.
  23. Use email or voice mail reminders to yourself and others to cut out any stress.
  24. Enjoy a good meal or dessert or snack.  Don’t just rush.  Savor each flavor.
  25. Take breaks.  Do NOT work through lunch.  It is important to leave your desk.
  26. Look at your color choices.  If you see that your predominant color is neutral or black, add color!
  27. Delegate.  Choose responsible people, designate specific tasks, and let it go.  Don’t micro-manage.
  28. Journal.  Keep a journal.  You will be amazed at how much you achieved in a year.
  29. Be a friend.  Care about others and lean on them for comfort too.  Confidential sharing relieves stress.
  30. Vacation.  Plan relaxation days (bookend to a weekend) or plan a longer vacation to rest, relax, restore.
  31. Visualize.  See your success in exact, vivid detail.  Plan what success is and looks like ahead of time.
  32. Avoid negativity.  Negative people or situations should be avoided.  Maintain optimism.
  33. Worry less.  Don’t deny your concerns, but spend minimal time worrying.  Decide what must be done.
  34. Change.  If your routine is reflexive, you do the same things.  Change where you go or what you do.    
  35. Be private.  Allow time every day for privacy, quite time or solitude to reflect on what’s important.
  36. Do the hardest first!  Get it out of the way so that you can pleasantly, leisurely enjoy the rest.
  37. Count.  Count to fifty (50) before you speak.  Pausing a few minutes before an outburst saves anxiety.
  38. Forgive.  Standardize your expectations of yourself and others.  Expecting perfection is stressful.
  39. Smile.  Be optimistic and project joy.  You will feel good and so will others around you.
  40. Gather loose change.  Count all of your coins and give yourself a treat.
  41. Say Thank You!  Express gratitude.  Appreciate and recognize the goodness in others.
  42. Make something.  Try origami; build a kite, ceramics, pottery.  Find a creative outlet.
  43. Dance.  Turn on the music.  Dance, step lively for a few minutes a day.
  44. Talk positive.  When your words are positive and encouraging others respond in kind. 
  45. Sing.  Let the melody flow.  Even if it is only in the shower, add vocal rhythm to your day.
  46. Meditate.  Be still.  Listen to earth sounds, hear the birds chipper, connect with nature.
  47. Cry.  Release tension with a good cry.  Let it all out and let it go.
  48. Try something new.  Candy-making, belly dancing, sign-language, fitness, weights, bike riding, skating. 
  49. Take a bath.  Fill the tub with warm, soothing water and chill. Maybe add candles or aromatherapy. 
  50. Redlight.  While stopped at a red light, say to yourself, “I am happy” or “I am an achiever.”
  51. Take a class.  If you are challenged in the kitchen, take a class.
  52. Renew every day.  BOSS or TOSS something in your life everyday and live anew.    

The Importance of Thank You

I was talking to a dear friend last night and during our conversation we shifted to saying thank you to each other. She remarked that someone she knew said of her that she cherishes their friendship because she always said a sincere “thank you” to others for what they had done for her or given her.

This caused me to pause and ask myself if I am that thoughtful?

The answer is yes. I make it a priority to thank my friends and family for their kindness. Without fail I express my thanks in a multitude of ways. It is important to me to say thank you and I always do.

Thank you is important for two reasons: 1) It displays a graciousness and consciousness of a kind act from someone else. It reminds you to be grateful – in all ways always and 2) It allows you to acknowledge and accept kind gestures from others.

Both reasons – being grateful and acceptance – form character and character forms the person. It is praiseworthy and important to be known for having the being of a good character.

“Good character is more to be praised than outstanding talent. Most talents are to some extent a gift. Good character, by contrast, is not given to us. We have to build it piece by piece by thought, choice, courage and determination.” ~John Luther

Let me share a few ways to say “thank you:”

1. Say it immediately after a compliment. Acknowledge the words with gracious gratitude. Your response may be just a simple thank you with a smile or you may bridge onto that compliment by saying something sincere and true about the other person.

2. The Post Foundation recommends writing a handwritten thank you note promptly after an interview, getting a gift, or after receiving an award. Handwritten notes are far more powerful than e-mail or text messages – it says that you took a little more time to write the note and that leaves an indelible impression.

3. Make a phone call. Call the person and talk about the gift, award, or kind gesture. Be sure to sit down and have a conversation rather than rush through the acknowledgment.

4. Send flowers or a small gift. Yes, it is appropriate to send flowers or a small, well chosen gift when you have gotten something that is important to you. Two years ago I needed an endorsement for my new book and I was given that endorsement without a fee attached from a powerful figure in my target field. Not only did I send an elaborate thank you note, I sent flowers to her office too. They were impressed so much that we still stay in touch. I have gained monetary and professional bonuses which exceeded the cost of the flowers from my kind act that extended beyond the usual to say thank you.

Thank you is important! You will get more back when you express your gratitude for the good will given to you by others.

Practice the habit of saying thank you. Be gracious, be sincere, be willing to open up and let others see your character.