Staying power: what it is and where it comes from

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staying-power

While nursing a reflective mood recently, I scrolled upon these Facebook gems:

Burning desire to be or do something gives us staying power—a reason to get up every morning or to pick ourselves up and start in again after a disappointment. ~ Marsha Sinetar

True strength doesn’t come from loving yourself when you have your sh*t together, true strength comes when you can stand courageously in your darkest, messiest and weakest moments and still find the strength to love yourself beyond all circumstance and definition. ~ Jannine Murray

Give. But don’t allow yourself to be used. Love. But don’t allow your heart to be abused. Trust. But don’t be naive. Listen. But don’t lose your own voice. ~ Anonymous

I’ve been a little naïve, used, my heart abused. I’ve forgotten how to love myself, and I’m searching for the voice I’ve lost. But my passions afford me strength, staying power—disappointment after disappointment—because I have a reason to rise every day and begin anew.

What gives you staying power?

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Sifting through the muck to reach the prize

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What seems to us as bitter trials
are often blessings in disguise. ~ Oscar Wilde

For the past couple of weeks I’ve wrestled with psychological and emotional baggage that’s over 30 years in the making (and not flattering), which has also triggered a nasty case of monkey mind (also not pretty—see ‘Revisiting…’). Then add in to the mix an extra dose of restlessness that stems from myriad [new] dreams I dared dreamed and laid the foundation for last year, which I hope to begin living out in 2017. And most of the areas I’m working on will not and cannot realize change overnight. After all, it’s impossible to rush something you hope to last forever… or at least as long as you’re breathing. Any type of growth takes time. Healing—physical, emotional, spiritual or mental—takes time, too. I just need to remind myself of this while I wade through each trial to discover my own personal blessing.

Do you count them as today’s trials or blessings?

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When all you see is the mess: there’s still hope

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work-in-progress
Recently I pulled up a link to a blog post I wrote for a digital publication several months ago. I read through the piece with eyes that had grown objective over time and thought, ‘Wow, this is good. What was I so worried about before?’ Later that day, the post popped up in my mind and I recalled it in its rough form: the countless drafts, rewrites, edits from my freelance editor (aka Big Sister). In other words, the work in progress was a mess. Isn’t that what our lives can look like at times? From the exterior, we might appear like we have it all together—and maybe we do now and again—but I guarantee a mess has littered our paths at one point or another. Thankfully, the people we are today are still a work in progress. And there’s hope for us to listen more, speak less and sprinkle love and kindness into our little worlds.

Where do you see your biggest work in progress?

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Time management: the +10 plan

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10-min

Time management: #thestruggleisreal. I can record a task in my planner to the minute, but invariably I’ll end up running behind or, worse yet, running out of time. I tend to think I can squeeze in one more thing, or I simply allow too little time in my schedule. I began 2017 with a new plan: the +10 plan. In the mornings, by the time I leave for work, I’ve lost roughly 10 minutes. For the past two weeks, I’ve set my alarm 10 minutes earlier and moved each a.m. goal back 10 minutes. The result? More cushion. I’m able to spend additional time enjoying my morning devotions, which automatically sets me up for a smoother day. Plus I have extra space to complete my chores with ample time to prepare for my workday. I’ve dabbled with applying this +10 plan to other commitments, as well, and with similar results. If you need more time, give it a try. It works!

What time management tips can you share?

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Energy flows where attention goes

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focus-on-plenty

I’m happy to report that my focus on the ‘Power of p’ is off and running—peace, patience, purpose and prayer at the top of my 2017 pursuits. In addition, I plan to emphasize another P: my plenty (vs. lack). Thus far, this has proven an exercise in attitude adjustment. Sometimes you just want to pout because you’re not where you thought you’d be at this stage of the game (of life). For example, while hiking a couple weeks ago, I ruminated on my novel and how I still haven’t written it (yes, I wrote one a few years ago, during a 30-day challenge, but I consider that my practice)—and about all the writing workshops on my schedule this year. I’ve decided that, like any person training for a marathon or the Olympics or a trek into the Grand Canyon, that’s what my practice and workshops are doing: prepping me to write and publish my novel. It’s about keeping focused on the plenty.

How’s your energy flow?

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A year in review: in only 168 words

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a-year-in-review

It’s my thing: there are 168 hours in a week and 168 words in a blog just ‘feel’ right. So here goes: With 2016 almost a wrap, let’s talk about the past. Wait, what? Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Because a few weeks ago, miles of hiking trail behind me I, too, thought about those well-meaning peeps who suggest you leave the past in the past. After all, that’s not where you’re headed, right? But, how will you know what to bring with you into the new year if you don’t take stock of what transpired? Where did you grow? Where did you trip? Who helped you along the way? What seeds of kindness did you sow? What bad behaviors did you shed? What new habits served you well? It’s about leaving behind whatever holds you back and putting into practice what you’ve learned as you look ahead. Lay the foundation: now you’re ready to begin building a brand new year. Cheers!

What’s your plan for 2017?

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The difference between happiness, joy

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happiness-vs-joy
Recently I heard an apt description of both happiness and joy. In a nutshell: happiness comes to us; joy is inside of us. It stands to reason, then, that happiness is created by external and oftentimes fleeting or fickle people, places and/or things. If we base our happiness on our spouse, job, car or health, and our relationship dies, we’re laid off, we total the car or get sick, it can be hard to put on a happy face (until the next whatever it is). Also, if everything external is temporary, then there must be something more that creates internal joy. For me and for many others, this source of joy is spiritual. For others, it’s a mindset to choose happy, while at the same time setting the intention that nothing or no one will steal their peace away. And, it doesn’t hurt to take the focus off ourselves, whenever possible, to invest in the lives of others (see ‘A rebirth of sorts…“).

Are you happy… or joyful?

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