Ways to share the LOVE a little more

I LOVE YOU MORE is a big phrase in our house, so seeing that February is THIS week, I thought I would post some ideas on ways to LOVE a little more in your life. Whether it is your spouse or kids, here are some great ideas. Enjoy!!

YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR PARTNER:

beauty-couple-dance-dress-friends-girl-Favim.com-49574tumblr_m5lc17b0jM1qdblieo1_500I was recently reading an Oprah post and I loved this visual–“Drop your story about who your partner is and see him/her with a “fresh-start mind.” Decide that today you are going to learn three new things about them, or you’re going to really listen when you have dinner together. As Someone once told me, if you’re dancing with someone and aren’t paying close attention to the way they are moving, you step all over each other. And then you don’t want to dance anymore.”

I LOVE that visual of dancing, being present, moving in the moment, together. Can you see it? Can you visualize dancing and not being present—stepping all wrong, getting frustrated, not enjoying the dance. Who enjoys getting stepped on, both emotionally and physically–no one!! So, work on the dance within your relationship. Begin to get present, truly listen, find things you both enjoy together, hold each other and begin again.

heart-shapeMORE TIPS:
Here are a number of tips, I will probably do another post on this same topic because there is a lot to cover about Sharing the Love.  Look for my additional LOVE posts. 

According to PsychologyToday you should have a ‘pet name’ for each other because calling your partner by an affectionate name brings a positive response.

Share the housework is another thing they suggest, because it makes you feel like you are working together & that not one person carries the brunt of the work.    My husband has always been a great example of this. He is always working so hard and then is always looking for opportunities to help where he can. Amazing!!

Play, get out and do things together that are new.  I can definitely say that getting out and trying new things together helps you feel alive, it makes you look around and enjoy where you are—together. It is a fun way to connect.

Share a Surprise: Everyone loves a good surprise, so throughout this month do fun little things that will surprise the ones you love.  My Dad gives my mom a ‘Love Mantel’ where each day he puts something new on the mantel each morning. He puts cheesy plush animals that move, giant love cards, poems he writes, etc. It has been a fun tradition that my Mom looks forward to.  You could also plan a special date that is full of surprise locations, a special dinner, a walk on the beach, a fun activity, a stroll through a museum, a night under the stars, etc. You create it and Surprise!! A great gift for everyone.

Personalize something: A great gift is something from the heart, so pull out your guitar and write a song, make a delicious dinner, write a note that shares your feelings, plan a trip somewhere they have always wanted to go or is a favorite destination, send their favorite flowers, change their phone background to a picture of the two of you, Copy and paste the lyrics from one of their favorite songs with a sweet note, get a card deck & write things you love about each other on each card & then share them with each other

Pray together (as a family/as a couple): This is one thing that brings you together, solidifies, helps you listen to matters of the heart—what you are all grateful for, the highlights from the day, things to think about, matters to ponder. It brings everyone to a place of quiet listening.

Share something positive: Send a sweet text, share a quote you come across, a fun pic from the weekend, something that will inspire. Just send!! Just be careful who you send it to. smile. I know this sounds funny, but my husband was up in our kitchen working and I wanted to send him some love. I typed up a little note and texted it to him. I smiled as I heard the ding, only 20 feet away. I listened to him type up something & then I smiled again as I heard the jet plane noise go off. I waited for my text from him. He was waiting for my response. After a few minutes, he finally said, didn’t you get my text? Puzzled, I replied, No! He instantly looked at his computer and started to laugh out loud, with a little bit of shear panic. He realized he had sent the note to our brother-in-law. Luckily, it was just a sweet note full of…You truly mean the world to me and I would walk to the ends of the earth for you. I would swim the deepest ocean for you & I would climb the tallest mountain for just one kiss. Our brother-in-law responded….That was perfect!! You are pretty okay too!  It was very funny. Lesson learned—be careful who you send stuff to. smile. smile.

Say something positive: Researchers have found that happy couples have a ratio of five positive comments to each negative comment (urtango).  This only makes sense, relationships have a better foundation when the people involved are building!! Build a positive foundation with good things…compliments, things you enjoy about each other, things you admire in one another. Build! Build! Build! Don’t tear each other down, don’t tear down the beautiful things you have built together.

Do something small: Write a little note & stick it on the car dash before work. I like this one, use a toothpick to write “I Love You” on the outside of an unpeeled banana (I am going to try this right now!)–urtango. Write a note and leave it on the bathroom mirror, grab their robe when they get out of the shower, put their favorite treat with a note on the car seat, record a memo message on their phone, write a love note on their calendar, get them a new audiobook to listen to on their way to work, get their favorite bath gel & leave it in the shower with a little note, buy a magazine subscription they like…

state-of-the-nation-children-390x285YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR CHILDREN

Share the Love: By saying I Love You, Giving hugs (at least 15 a day), Sharing highlights from the day with each other, Wrapping up in a big blanket and sharing a good movie or reading a chapter in a book together, Having special back scratches or ways you paint their face with your fingers, Having a special song you put them to bed by, A special story book you read out of, By letting them help cook something in the kitchen & then licking the spoon, By walking home from school together, By having Mommy Missy or Mommy son dates that are one-on-ones especially for them, Sharing a sweet smile, Lovingly hold their hands when you walk together, Sharing your time and being present.

Share Stories: Share with them memories of their childhood, the day they were born, the way their name came about, stories about your childhood, things about you, share your likes, your dislikes, share stories that connect you.

Write a letter: I write a special letter to my daughter every six months. I write about what she is like, what she is doing in school, her friendships, her likes and dislikes, funny moments, her favorite things, and then I am collecting them to give to her when she is 18. I occasionally read bits and pieces of them with her to make her smile. It’s a great tradition.

Ask Questions: Ask your child what they are thinking about, What they wonder about, What is magical to them, What they love about their life, What they love about you as their parent, What was their favorite part of the day, What they wish for, What they want to be when they grow up, What it means to be a good friend, What they like you to do as their parent, What they struggle with, What they enjoy about the different holidays throughout the year, What they love about the seasons…

Give special gifts: Find something special, that is especially made for your child. Put some thought into it & create a memory when giving gifts. Write a note that accompanies the gift. i.e.: my daughter loves Orangutans & wants to be a zoologist one day. She also dances, so when I found a small orangutan doll, dressed in a tutu, I knew I had to have it. My daughter fell in love with it–the message with the doll…be You, Shine, Be an original. It was perfect. When you take the time and put thought into gift giving=great memories and gifts that will be cherished.

Give them a gift of a memory with you: Teach your child something special—teach them to make homemade pumpkin cookies, how to peel potatoes, how to fold laundry, how to shuffle cards, how to play HORSE or Around the World, how to play ping pong or mini golf, how to knit, how to take a photo, how to write a thank you card, how to draw or doodle, how to set a table properly…

Hope these ideas get you thinking about ways to share the love a little more.  Enjoy the month of LOVE!!


The Legacy of your Life

IMG_0617Over this past weekend I ventured down to southern Utah to an area with more than 500 petroglyphs dated as far as 8,000 years ago. Wow! As my little family walked the gravel paths and found large rocks over 10 feet wide etched with what seemed to be life time lines, we were in ah. The primitive images of birds, animals, people walking, circles and circles that looked like labyrinths, it made us wonder about the people who drew the images. You wondered about their life out in the middle of nowhere, the heat, the rock ledges, the solitude, what their life was like, what they dreamed of, what they did day in and day out, what their family was like, the things they held precious…

IMG_0639I then thought about my own life and the legacy I will leave. Will it be a legacy of faith, goodness, light, love? Will I be remembered as someone who was a good mother, a supportive, loving wife. Will I be remembered as someone who tried things, who was brave and adventurous, or someone who didn’t risk, who stayed safe. For some reason lately I have been needing to step out of my usual, to try new things, to venture beyond my limitations, so I have been risking more, I have been trying to venture more. This year has brought discomfort with having to go to dinner parties (not my favorite past time), putting my work out where people can reject it (entered some visual work into a contest & gala–that was a couple of tough situations), but I have also tried playing more, having more adventure—hence my idea of finding indian ruins in the desert.

There is only so much life you can live if you stay within the lines, if you walk in only comfortable shoes, if you don’t go beyond and find more within yourself. So, the last couple of weeks I have been writing down things I have tried, things I have done, things I have accomplished, things I am proud of within the years of my life…small things, big things, adventurous things. Things that define who I am and the life I have led so far. It is fun to see the details, the wins, the growth, the learning. It is also fun to create new lists of things you want to do, to accomplish, to dream.

So, with that in mind, I challenge you to read other people’s life lists, bucket lists, to do’s of the year & create your own wish lists, life lists & begin one by one. Step by step, to see yourself go beyond, one little step at a time. Life is good. Life is NOW. Your legacy is written with what you do every single day. You are writing the pages of your life, so make them great!!

Good luck. Best Wishes.

wishlistHere are some Wish list ideas: Enjoy your children, Spend more quality time with those you love, Start a blog, Write every single day, Do something creative, Have an article published, Write a book, Create a business, Feed animals in the wild, Try a different sport of some kind (snowboarding, paddle boarding, skiing, fishing, hiking, canoeing, climbing), Try gardening, Take # of pictures this year, Read # of books this year, Go see the olympics, Learn a language, Stay in a tree house, Meet a celebrity and have your pic with them, Pet/feed a wild animal, Write a fan letter to someone you admire, Drive a convertible, Try something extreme like skydiving or scuba diving, List out places you would like to visit, Ride a motorcycle, Go sailing, Take a class, See a cirq show in Las Vegas, Visit # of National Parks, Ride Horseback, Go dogsledding, Attend a floating lantern celebration, Try sorbing (giant bubble ball walking on water), Send a message in a bottle, Take a dance lesson, Learn to play a musical instrument, Take # road trips, Own a hammock, Sell something, Find a good service project once a month, Make one new recipe a month, Go on # of dates with husband, Buy a city pass and do all the activities…there are so many ideas to bring to life—make them your own.

Here are some quotes I liked on the subject..enjoy!

quotation-john-nichols-life-legacy-humanity-meetville-quotes-203530quotation-rasheed-ogunlaru-living-life-legacy-destiny-live-courage-today-tomorrow-mortality-regret-meetville-quotes-240345 Quotation-Taylor-Swift-life-good-legacy-people-Meetville-Quotes-128977Quotation-Tavis-Smiley-life-legacy-live-morality-choice-Meetville-Quotes-18918


Lessons learned from the movie Elvis & Anabelle

6d80bfe2699a4737dd077805b891cde7Probably many of you have never heard of this movie, but I came across it on Amazon after watching another quirky movie, My Sassy Girl (which I will do some lessons for that next). I did not know anything about this movie, so I was definitely surprised by different parts. I don’t want to spoil the movie for you, so just watch and learn.

I will say, this movie definitely brought up some personal feelings regarding loved ones and suicide, depression…I have had people throughout my life who have suffered from depression and on a couple of occasions had people close to me at  serious tipping points. It is very Scary, emotional stuff, so this movie had moments that definitely hit home for me.

The opening scene of this movie was almost like a horror film with embalming fluid, a hearse, the run down funeral home. But with any movie you have the dark moments followed by the light, and thank heavens for that balance. The movie was a journey seeing the characters, their lives, their personal struggles and their need to break free from the world they were living in.

film1You have Elvis, his mother had committed suicide on Christmas day, he lived with his father who had been running a funeral home, but with a recent accident was unable to, so Elvis has been taking over without anyone knowing. Elvis loves his father very much and there is a very sweet bond between these two characters.  On a side note, Max Minghella (the actor that played Elvis) was truly drawn to this role because of the relationship between the father and son. Very sweet.

-Elvis-Anabelle-Movie-stills-blake-lively-15143475-399-268You have Annabelle, pageant queen, mother loves her but has driven Annabelle’s whole life to revolve around winning pageants, smiling, being pretty. Annabelle plays the part, but inside she is dying on a personal level.

Lessons learned:

0The life lessons of mortality–why? Why do I have this life? You could see this multiple times within this movie. You could see the characters faces wondering, why?      I think that is a very typical life question that we all wonder at different points within our lives. I think this question often comes from the perspective we see, the outward existence, a heart that is seeking to understand certain things, the mystery, the confusion, the dark, the light. You can ask this question when you are struggling, but this question can also come up when you feel you don’t deserve all you have. It is an ongoing lesson.

pdvd1105Cherished time is so important: We all seem to spin each day in the same direction and often find it hard to slow down and be present with those we love so dearly. Time is precious & this movie reminded me how each moment needs to be cherished. Elvis enjoyed reading every night to his father and their friendship and love was truly shared. I hope we all strive to have close relationships that we can hold and cherish always.

film3See life as a gift filled with miracles: At one point in the movie Annabelle runs away from her glamorous life to find solitude in the questions, the mystery of life. She begins to see life as a gift. She noticed the sunsets, the starry nights, she planted a garden to believe miracles would want to grown, even in bad dirt. She gets determined to plant something & buys bags of seed, starts up the tractor that has not been used in a very long time, determined to believe in miracles. Charlie (Elvis’ dad) and Elvis don’t believe what she is doing. They think she is wasting her time. She does not tell either of them what she is planting.

tumblr_lj0x9pakPZ1qckv4ko1_500_largeSee life with a new perspective: Annabelle realizes that for every terrible tragedy that happens in the world, there is always something equally miraculous that grows from it.  Can you believe that gift within your own life? Can you begin to see that when something tragic happens, something good from it will grow?

54089bf0c2f9defc261039df6f3bcc98Live this day: Annabelle is chased off the farm. She begins to think of her time at the funeral home—painting, tilling the fields, planting seeds, investing in other people and evaluates where she has been in her life and realized that she has not ever truly lived one day for herself.     Do you ever feel like this? Feel like you are always on a rotating cycle of doing dishes, homework, the same job, the same cycle? Maybe you need a little thing to do today that is yours. Make a list of a few things you would like to do in the next month—it doesnt have to be big things. Begin with little things: Go on a walk, Read 15 minutes a day, listen to an audio book on your way to work, doodle something, learn about something on youtube…just begin to live this day doing something small that means something to you. Make it your own!

tumblr_lno9kbinsp1qdssiwo1_500Don’t focus on the negative: Elvis is stuck in depressing thoughts, wondering what happened to his mother, feeling overwhelmed trying to run the funeral home & take care of his dad, not being able to pursue his own dreams…Annabelle tells Elvis if he keeps thinking his depressing thoughts, then he will have a depressing life.      How are your thoughts? What do you focus on in your life? When you talk out loud, what are you saying to others? How do you feel inside? You can feel if you are feeling negative or positive—it is pretty easy to tell. Be aware and focus on the good things within your life.

img-thing-1Good question: Annabelle asked Elvis…If you could do one thing in the whole wide world, what would it be???       Ask yourself that question. Nothing is being held from you…what would you want to do??

The movie does have some depressing moments where the two main characters are apart, depressed, wishing to be free of this world, the misunderstandings, the media, the loneliness…until one last miracle shines through in the sweet ending.

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Something to INSPIRE you to Play Big

BestSelf-e1377554016803This week I have been posting about Playing Big, Being Bold, so here are some fun videos to help bring those feelings to the surface. There are many ingredients that help aid us in playing a little bigger today and here they are…

Personal Motivation: great video with a great message   Believe in what you can do.

Enthusiasm and a Positive Attitude: great video of kid practicing for baseball   Just remember, having an enthusiastic attitude will get you even further in anything you do. Look at every situation and find the positive.

http://www.values.com/inspirational-stories-tv-spots/99-the-greatest

Take Action: funny video–getting stuck on escalator     We often get stuck in our mental madness, listening to our inner critics, just playing it safe for the sake of staying safe, taking the easy way. But, sometimes it is just taking a little step each day and moving forward to get going in the direction you desire. Take action—don’t get stuck!!

Practice whatever it is you enjoy doing: video of Amazing Talented People   There are amazing people doing amazing things because they take the time to practice, get a little better each day and are able to master what they focus on. You can apply this to anything: your job, your health, your attitude, your direction, your talent, your dreams.


Shout it Out for Yourself!!

Shout-it-OutIn the spirit of being bold, playing big, I thought this video would be perfect to help you find that something that you want to dream about. SoulPancake is one of my favorites & I love the videos they do, this one is a perfect fit for today!! Enjoy.

One thing to think about and make happen for you—go outside and Shout Out a dream, a goal, something you want to do that will propel you forward to play a little bigger in your life. Do it for YOU!

WHAT WILL YOU SHOUT OUT??


Be Bold Video

Well, today I wanted to share with you a video that I made awhile ago, but I thought it would fit perfectly with the topic of BEING BOLD, not giving in to the inner critic, the voice that tries to keep us safe, to not play bigger. This video is full of people and their experiences of becoming unstoppable, pushing through the fears, the critics, themselves and striving to play big in their lives.

But, I think we also need to take into consideration the people around us, the agents, the editors, the family members, the friends, others outside of us that can also hold us back from playing big. If we begin to believe what others are saying or telling us to do, then we are not being true to ourself or the dream of playing a little bigger in the world. Here is a great story from an Oprah article that illustrates this point very well. Plus, you will see this person in my video as well. Smile. Smile. Enjoy.

Once Upon A Time, there was a girl named Taylor. When she sat down to eat lunch in her school cafeteria, the girls she’d once called friends stood up and moved to another table. They had cast Taylor out of their clique because instead of going to parties with them on weekends, she’d stay home and write songs on her guitar. The outsider landed a development deal with a record company and moved with her parents to Nashville. She would go on to become the first artist since the Beatles—and the only woman—to record three consecutive albums that spent six or more weeks at number one. Taylor Swift is still writing songs and once told a Nebraska audience, “What does it matter if you didn’t have any friends in high school when you’ve got 15,000 of your closest friends coming to see you in Omaha?”  -taken from Oprah, The Power of Quirk

Well, here is my video…enjoy. I hope you take the stories of inspiration to heart and begin to see that any dream is possible, in the face of adversity, when someone tells you No, questions your talent or rejects your ideas. Continue on, be bold…there is genius in it!!


LIVE BOLD

freedomWell, today is about being BOLD, finding that something that you are hiding from and taking the steps to set it free. We each have our own genius, our own spark that is suppose to light up the world, but often we doubt, we struggle, we hide and are afraid to let the spark ignite and then shine. We are all victims of this smallness.

Yesterday I was listening to a great podcast that had Tara Mohr as the guest. She has a new book out called Playing Big. On the podcast she was sharing her personal experiences of listening to the small voices within, the fear, the part of us that just wants to keep us safe. She shared a story of being invited to be on the Today Show to share her message about her work, Playing Big. Before she went on the show she had multiple thoughts & voices in her head of comparing herself (under 5 ft tall, not model thin, millions watching, sitting next to these beautiful women who may ask tough questions). The thoughts hit her & she had to remember her own work & thank the voice for its concern and tell it she had the matter under control. She had to remind herself that her work needed to be about playing big, she had to remind herself of the millions of people watching the show & the number of people that may be inspired by the message. She had to be bold and play bigger than the little voices inside.

It was a great story about how we all have our own insecurities, we listen to the voices that keep us small, but when we begin to see that the voices are just thoughts trying to keep us safe, we can identify them, thank them and keep going into a bolder direction.

The inner critic will show up whenever we’re on the edge of playing bigger, and whenever we’re taking a new risk and stretching ourselves. And so we just need tools to deal with it.  -Tara Mohr

timthumb.phpTara shared some great quotes that will illustrate how our inner critic/fear comes up in ALL of us. It isn’t partial to the weak, to the insecure, to the strong, to the successful, etc. Here are some great examples from Tara & some I found…

Twyla Tharp, the award-winning choreographer, says her number one fear is “People will laugh at me.” -from Tara

Who could have thought that Richard Branson (Virgin) has a lifelong dread of public speaking. When he launched Virgin in the early 80s, his mentor, entrepreneur Freddie Laker, told him he had to make himself the public face of the company. “I remember thinking, ‘That’s easy for you to say,’ because I was utterly terrified,” says Branson. The Resolution: Branson relies on a slew of mind games to get him through his numerous speaking gigs. He forces himself to imagine he’s in his living room, chatting with pals. He spends weeks writing and rehearsing seemingly off-the-cuff speeches. And he relies heavily on videos and Q&A’s to shift attention elsewhere. Branson’s methods have been so successful that now he delivers speeches on—you guessed it—“The Art of Public Speaking.”  (taken from lifereimagined)  A little something more about Richard Branson– is the fourth richest person in the United Kingdom. He owns the Virgin group of brands, including a record label, an airline, and the mobile phone company. He also owns an island in the Caribbean. As a child, though, he performed poorly on tests in school and struggled with dyslexia. Teachers and authority figures assumed he wouldn’t go very far, but Branson defied the odds, and attributes his success to his people skills – proving that street smarts can take you far. (masterschannel)

Perhaps it was inevitable that beloved American institution Donnie Osmond would develop a paralyzing dread of another beloved American institution: the shopping mall. One night while starring in the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Osmond had a panic attack so severe that (as he later wrote) “I honestly believed I was dying.” It was part of a pattern of social anxiety that had dogged him for most of his life. One focal point became an extreme fear of malls, where he became convinced everyone was ridiculing him. The Resolution: Osmond worked with a cognitive-behavior psychologist who showed him that many of his worries were groundless. Among his psychological exercises: buying a shirt at a shopping center, then returning it the next day—without disaster! “I survived,” Osmond said, “and even learned to laugh along with the people I always feared were laughing at me.” (taken from lifereimagined)

Gustave Eiffel, the designer of the famed Eiffel Tower, was terrified of heights.

Roger Moore (James Bond) cannot pick up a gun without uncontrollably blinking.

Walt Disney, who gave the world Mickey Mouse, was indeed, afraid of mice.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett was “terrified” of public speaking. He was so nervous, in fact, that he would arrange and choose his college classes to avoid having to get up in front of people. He even enrolled in a public speaking course and dropped out before it even started. “I lost my nerve,” he said.  At the age of 21, Buffett started his career in the securities business in Omaha and decided that to reach his full potential, he had to overcome his fear of public speaking. Buffett enrolled in a Dale Carnegie course with another thirty people who, like him, were “terrified of getting up and saying our names.” (taken from forbes.com)

The world famous minister, Joel Osteen, sells out places like Yankee Stadium and speaks live to 40,000 a week who visit Lakewood church every Sunday (the mega-church meets in Houston at the former Compaq Center). Osteen says the week before his first sermon in 1999 marked the worst days of his life. “I was scared to death,” he says. At the time he knew very little about speaking or preparing a message. In fact he was perfectly content to sit behind the video camera during his father’s sermons. When his father passed away, Osteen’s wife and family encouraged him to take the stage. Osteen did not overcome his fear for a long time. The conversations he heard didn’t help. “I overheard two ladies say, ‘he’s not as good as his father.’ I was already insecure and—boom—another negative label.” Words, he says, are like seeds. If you dwell on them long enough they take root and you will become what those words say you’ll become—if you let them. Osteen says negative labels—the ones people place on us and the labels we place on ourselves— prevent us from reaching our potential. (taken from forbes)

Albert Einstein–failed his college entrance exam.

Steven Spielberg was rejected 3 times by USC’s film program

Jim Carrey had to drop out of school at 15 to help support his family. His father was unemployed and the family had to start living in a van.

Jay-Z couldn’t get signed to any record labels. Yet that didn’t stop him from creating his own music powerhouse. His label would eventually turn into the insanely lucrative Roc-A-Fella Records. Here’s proof Jay-Z is on top: Forbes has estimated his net worth at $500 million, and TIME ranked him at one of their 2013 Most Influential People In The World. And he’s married to Beyoncé. (huffingtonpost)

poster-be-bold-discomfortI think that the phenomenon that people are pointing to — noticing that women often don’t see themselves as ready to take on a next bigger role, and all these issues of self-doubt — I think it’s right to shine the spotlight there, and to start to say something’s going on here, and we’re seeing too many capable women not stepping up for reasons of self-doubt. The problem, or one of the problems, I think, is that then we have framed the solution as: let’s become more confident. That’s where I would disagree. I think that self-doubt is the problem but confidence is not the antidote; the antidote is relating in a new way to our own self-doubt, and that new way has to do with hearing it, being aware of it, but not taking direction from it.  -Tara Mohr

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Peace to you and your brilliance. SHINE. Play Big. Be YOU.


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