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Tag Archives: Manifesting

Attitude of Gratitude

 

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With the holidays behind us and the new year fully rung in, the season for  thanksgiving has officially passed.   Yet an attitude of gratitude provides gifts year round.

Attitude of gratitude?

What is that?  In life we have a choice on our attitude.  Regardless of what happens in the world, around you, within you- you chose your attitude (remember, no excuses).  Your choice thereby affects the world around you, your relationships, perceptions and ultimately, life. 

Whenever I need an attitude adjustment (exhausted, depressed, stuck or just generally grumpy), there is one exercise that always turns around my mood and perspective on life. 

Gratitude Exercise:

I simply write or say a list of things I am grateful for.  No matter the condition of life around you, there is always an endless list of things to be grateful for.  At times, I have to start with something really, really small.  Such as, I am grateful for this breath.  I am grateful for the sunshine.  The seeds clinging to the winter branches outside my window, rattling in the wind.  Thankful for shelter to keep me out of that wind.  Grateful for beauty and God for eyes to view it all.

Suddenly the mood has shifted and the ability to move positively through life re-emerges.  The nature of an attitude of gratitude is you recover gratefulness and become something positive in the lives of those around you.  Your attitude affects all around you, like little ripples in a lake disturbed by a tossed stone.

 Gratitude is then a gift to those around you.  However, it doesn’t end there; gratitude is an endless gift to yourself.  When you give thanks, and recover positivity, it gives you energy to create change- positive, intentional change.  This small change compounds, attracting the life you imagine.

Ann Voskamp wrote in depth on this subject in her book, “one thousand gifts“.  She utilized a gratitude journal for capturing her gratitude.  In doing so, she dramatically changed her life in the direction she desired.

I find even saying it to myself, part of a continual, silent prayer, works as well.  In this moment, I am thankful there are people in this world who want to be a positive force, to help others, to improve themselves, and give thanks to God. 

Share, do you give thanks?  Do you have a special way of doing so? What are you thankful for in this moment?  It may be this movement (attitude of gratitude) will restart poetry as a contemporary art form. Wouldn’t that be a beautiful change from most status updates 😉

Cultivating Intuition

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As a child I grew increasingly frustrated that there were so many competing rules in life.  I thought there had to be one ultimate Truth regarding how to live.  Shouldn’t we all be taught it and live accordingly?!

A lifetime of experiences has tempered that frustration. Thankfully.

I now believe we each have our own path and what is right for me in this moment, may simply not work for you.  I hope to share tools and insights I have been given that have helped me carve my path in the hopes it may help you (or allow you to share something different that works for you).

The last post focused on imagining the life you want to live.  To move from the imaging phase to the enacting phase, something is needed to guide actions and thereby create change in your life.  The most direct way I have found to enact intentional change is to cultivate intuition.

From Merriam-Webster:

Intuition: a natural ability or power that makes it possible to know something without any proof or evidence : a feeling that guides a person to act a certain way without fully understanding why: something that is known or understood without proof or evidence:  quick and ready insight

The quicker we grasp the right action and respond, the quicker we can move on to the next lesson or stage of our path through life.  Some of us will spend a lifetime reliving the same lesson.   I hope to remain open, learn from my experiences and cultivate the changes I intuitively know I need to make.

One of the great tools I have found in ultivating intuition is explained by Julia Cameron, in The Artist’s Way.  She calls this tool “Morning Pages”.   Essentially, one writes free-flow of conscience (no self-editing, no expectation to ever share the words with anyone).  Why I believe they work in creating change? It gets annoying to hear yourself say the same things every day.  At some point, you decide to change the script and change is born. Here’s how to do them:

  • Begin with a blank notebook or journal and a new easy-to-write-with pen
  • Upon waking (this is the best time to do this, however if you cannot possibly do this, take your first opportunity), set a timer for 15 minutes and begin writing
  • Do not edit your work (I even ignore punctuation as it slows down the stream of consciousness flow of thought to paper)
  • Do not lift the pen from paper until the timer goes off
  • Do not read your work
  • Repeat each day
  • For more insightful tools check out Ms. Cameron’s book (and accompanying workbook), it is truly one of the best books I have come across for awakening your creative self and unlocking your intuition)

Talk back!  Do you have a strong intuition?  Do you listen to it? What has happened when you don’t?  How has incorporating Morning Pages changed you, your life? Do you feel differently?  Do you see your life differently?

The Imagining Process: Part 1

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With the budget firmly in place and the financial plan running pretty much on auto-pilot, I am shifting gears to a series on the first tenet of this blog: imagining the life one wants to live.  There is nothing so personal.  No one can create this for you and no two people have exactly the same vision. It is the result of a lifetime of self-exploration and discovery.  That said, there are steps and tools that have aided myself and many others to visualize a self-directed path through life.

I like to begin this process by creating a Life Manifestation Board.  This is similar in process to the money manifestation board.  Creating this physical representation of what matters most to you in life, makes life change easier and decision-making much clearer:

  1. Start with a pen, paper, scissors and any flat surface (poster board or wrapping paper will work fine). *( If you would like to start the process now and don’t have the supplies on hand, simply create these categories on your phone, computer or a piece of paper.  You can always recreate the physical board at a later time.)
  2. Cut approximately 30 cards large enough to write a word or two
  3. Write 2-5 “Core” values each on a separate card.  These are the essential beliefs/needs you have in life.  For example, these might be health, spirituality, passion, love, beauty, etc.
  4. Then list the Manifestations of the Core, the ways the Core are expressed or shown in life.  Examples include family, exploring, creating, children, work.
  5. Then list the Actions that carry out the Core and Manifestations in your life. Examples include, helping others, eating healthfully, exercise, gardening, etc.
  6. Tape or glue the cards onto the board.  Keep the Core at the top, Manifestations in the middle and Actions at the bottom.
  7.  Spend time looking at what you have created.  Is there anything missing?  Are there things in your life now that occupy a lot of your time and energy but to not fulfill your imagined life?  What can you cut out of your life today?  What can you add?
  8. Place the board either in view or somewhere you can easily access when in need of focusing on your personal map for how you want to live your life.
  9. Refresh your Life Manifestation Board over time.  You will learn and grow and this map of your path should change with you.

 

Budget, once again (Part I)

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After yet another day of deliveries arriving at our house (USPS, UPS, and FedEx all with at least two packages).  I began to wonder, how do you decide when enough is enough?

We have a list of things we would like to buy.  For the house, our hobbies, our family, vacations, events, etc.  Who doesn’t?  Since we had reached our big financial goal, what was stopping us?

In my early 20s the hubby and I began life planning (see money manifestation board).  We dreamed and discussed how we wanted to live our lives (how many kids, how and where to raise them, where we want to travel etc.).  So we developed a budget.  A pretty serious budget.  We sent directly to savings one of our salaries (we make about the same amount).  Our budget wasn’t austere but it gave us a framework for determining what was important to us and using our money to achieve those things.  Essentially, it made it simple to know when to say no to spending. 

Three years ago, that budget meant that we had saved enough to enact our first huge lifestyle change.  We welcomed our first child, moved across country to a small mountain town, I began to work from home (still fulltime) and hubby left his secure, salaried employment to start his own company.

As if that wasn’t enough change, the next two years brought the arrival our last child, hubby was hired by another salaried employer, and we bought and remodeled our forever home.  Somewhere in the midst of this change, we stopped using a budget.

So back to the deliveries…

As the deliveries came in the door I felt frustration. Sure, we reached a big financial goal. What is more important is we are not yet where we want to be to make the next lifestyle changes.   There are only so many hours in a lifetime.  There are many interests we both have that we want to pursue.   These deliveries (inexpensive items but everything adds up) were taking away from the present we want to be living.  While we have the dream manifestation board, we had lost the tool that is essential for making those dreams reality.  And so, it is time to yet again create a budget.

Talk back, do you have a budget?  What are your feelings about living on a budget?  Do you think one can ever have enough money to not find a budget helpful?

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