Keeping Up With Healthy Initiatives When the Seasons Change

Healthy initiatives can seem energizing when you first start them. They give you hope of a better tomorrow and the good feeling in your heart of really doing something important for yourself. When Mother Nature sees fit to make changes in the seasons, it can throw a curve in your plans. Also seasonal holidays can seem like an excuse to no longer stay the course. Having a plan to combat these changes is the best way to not let them derail your progress.

If you follow my blog you probably know I have a number of healthy initiative all going at once. Taking Care of Me; Step By Step, is the blog that lays them all out if you are interested. My husband and I have been doing an excellent job getting our 10,000 steps in a day. We’re getting up and walking before work, then after work and again before bed, if we still need some more steps. This week we got snow here in MN. I wasn’t expecting it and upon waking discovered 3 inches of the pristine white stuff covering everything. I found it hard to want to get out an walk. I did eventually bundle up and head to the grocery store. I could have driven and it would have been quicker and warmer, but why not take care of 2 things at once. It was a nice sunny day. The bright sun reflected off the snow and I reflected on how to keep up with all that we are working on, despite time marching on.

I am a wonderful “justifier” and snow seems like a great reason to justify skipping a walk. Having a plan in place helps keep you on task. Just like with the intermittent fasting that we are working on. There is always a justified reason to not stay the course; family in town, a special gathering, or an appointment that throws a kink in things. Recently, when my brother visited, we met him early each morning for breakfast. I always look forward to this annual visit and our early morning breakfast and conversation. As his visit neared, I started to fret about what to do about the intermittent fasting and the fact the fact that I wait until 10am before I break my fast. In the end I had a conversation with my brother, who was gracious and understanding. I still met him for breakfast and I enjoyed a nice cup of hot tea, while we had our usual time together and great conversation. Having a plan helped me stay the course. I have so far lost 15.4 pounds by sticking to the intermittent fasting.

Finances is another healthy initiative we are working on. The holiday season is fast approaching. This is the time of year when people often try to spend money to show someone how much they love them. Buying someone a gift, that they may not need or want, will not necessarily communicate your love and appreciation of them. I encourage you to come up with a plan on how to handle this time of year. Start a savings account that you add to throughout the year. Set a budget for gifts and holiday groceries and stick to it. Find innovated ways to show your love and appreciation for those you care so dearly about. Start a conversation with your friends and family about other ways to celebrate your love and appreciation like agreeing to volunteer together as a family. Make an understanding about gifts and a cost limit. Give homemade gifts infused with good intentions and lots of love. There are so many options.

As soon as you decide to focus on a healthy initiative, something will come up to throw you off course. Try to think about what these things may be. Make a plan for them. Remember that healthy initiates are not things we do just for today or tomorrow. These are things we incorporate into our life an become our new standard of living. To ensure success at improving our life, we need to think about how to remain faithful to ourselves. We need to make ourselves a priority by having a plan to keep our momentum moving forward.

Thank you for reading my blog today. I love you! May all your plans come easily, so that you stay the course, and reach the goals you set for yourself, as if by magic.

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When Is Enough, Enough?

I was recently on a hiking adventure with Adventure Sister, Emy. While climbing up a pretty steep ascension, some rambling thoughts became an opportunity to reflect on my life and how I view what is enough.

As I was climbing, I was thinking of a friend who had shared stories of many spiritual ceremonies she had participated in. I thought, I would like to do more of that but time and money never seems plentiful enough to spend it on those types of practices. I whole heartedly believe that those wise souls, who facilitate these types of ceremonies, deserve to be paid for their time and energy, so that they can make a fair living for their own life. I was thinking once I have more financial abundance, I will take the opportunity to participate in more of these types of ceremonies. Ones that feed my soul and call out to my heart and fulfill my need to connect to spirit through nature. I will attend more classes given by wise souls who have knowledge to share. Once I have that magical amount of financial abundance called “more”.

It hit me then, as we climbed up and up from the river down below, that I  have made this deal with myself in the past so many years ago. I am much more financially abundant than I was when I last made this same promise to myself. I have noticed, as well as been told in the past, that the more you make the more you spend. This has proven to be very true. Also it seems that priorities shift. Spirituality has been a priority for me for a number of years but I create my own ceremonies and experiences rather than paying others for them. I trust my intuition, wise friends, and books for guidance,

It got me thinking, when it comes to abundance, when is enough, enough? Emy shared with me something she had learned about manifesting and getting the specifics into the visualization. How much do you want to make? How much vacation time do you need? What kind of benefits do you want? Do not try and manifest the how. Let the universe figure that part out. Getting the specifics figured out is also discussed in Lisa Nichols book, Abundance Now. She suggests you really think about the costs of doing things you want to do and living the lifestyle you want to live. She says only then can you really manifest the life of your dreams. This is something I have not ever really done before. I have never sat down and tried to figure out when enough will be enough.

I plan to spend some time deciding when I will feel abundant enough that I will feel safe to spend money to participate in ceremonies on a regular basis. Until that time, I will continue to participate in the occasional paid event but mostly will look within myself and to those wise souls who are walking this journey with me.

Thank you for reading my blog today. I wish you a lifetime of having enough to feed your soul and live the life of your dreams, as if my magic.

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Do You Feel Alone? Do You Think You Are the Only One?

Do you feel alone in your mistakes? Do you ever think you are the only one who has made a poor parenting decision, eaten or drank too much, or spent money foolishly, racking up massive debt? In her book: I Thought It Was Just Me(but it isn’t), Brené Brown says, “I don’t tell anyone the things I have gone through”. This is how Emy and I stumbled upon the idea for our book, Lessons Through Forgiveness. Emy wrote a heart felt chapter for another book. In this chapter she share a story from her life. It was full of regret for choices she had made in the past. It was so raw that it touched me in a way that few stories ever have. We all have these moments in our life that few, if any, know about. We are all not perfect.
Just think about all the things you are or ever have beat yourself up for. What mistakes have you made in the past that you feel are unforgivable or that you would never want to see the light of day? Do you judge yourself a failure for these things? What is so taboo to talk about; so we all most suffer alone in silence?
Parenting – Nothing can hurt you like your children. I have found that parenting has been the most painful experience. There is joy too, but everyone shares the joy. Few of us can really talk about the way we feel we have failed our children.
Sex – Sex is so often used for the wrong reasons. So many of us think sex will bring us love or boost our self esteem. I am sure there are many people out there who feel they slept with the “wrong” person. It might have been a poor choice in a partner or maybe they cheated on a relationship. Did you know that 25% of Americans have an incurable sexually transmitted disease (hivplusmag.com)? Yet no one talks about this.
Substance abuse – 23.5 million Americans are addicted to drugs and alcohol according to drugabuse.gov. Unless you are attending a recovery program you are unlikely to hear anyone share these stories.
Eating disorders – I am an emotional eater. Others forego eating when they are stressed. Depending on the website you look at it is estimated anywhere from 8 – 30 million Americans have an eating disorder. I can think of many painful stories related to my dysfunctional relationship with food that I have NEVER shared with anyone. When I have felt safe enough to share some stories with others, I learned that my stories were not all that unique.
Mental health – Even today, when we know so much more, there can still be such a stigma around mental health. 1 in 5 adults in this country has a mental health illness. The rate is about the same amongst teens. So many people are afraid to share when they are experiencing mental health issues. There are even those who are afraid to seek treatment for fear of what others will think.
Financial issues – Money troubles, crippling debt, gambling addictions, bankruptcies, Stockmarket missteps, foreclosures, even the good old “retail therapy” are ways that financial woes can creep into our lives. Many are busy beating themselves up for a history of poor or impulsive decisions related to money.
So many ways we judge ourselves and others. I am not saying you should run out and share all your stories. What I am saying is you should forgive yourself for your missteps. Know that you are not alone. Love yourself even if you feel like you have made mistakes, even if you think those mistakes are unforgivable.

Thank you for reading my blog today! I wish you a life filled with self acceptance.

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