The Travel Series: Work to Live or Live to Work?!? (Part 2)

Listen here to this podcast episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmrLU6joNuU

I recently got a chance to watch the new Netflix series, Emily in Paris, which transports me back to the time I lived abroad. Living abroad shift my perspective on the work-life balance. When I was living in Iceland and Italy, I was always aware of the importance of living in the moment. International living helps me grasp the difference between American and European culture.

In America, we live to work because our life rotates around the demands of work. This lifestyle encourages long working hours, making more money, neglecting family and friends, and taking fewer vacations. People who choose to live to work rarely take breaks to enjoy life but escape a life they hate. The feelings of low self-worth, needing validation, and other internal insecurities often plague their lives. Workaholism is the number one addiction in this live to work culture. 

However, European culture promotes a work to live culture. This lifestyle encourages working fewer hours to enjoy a quality of life, making less money to live a specific lifestyle, and utilizing vacation for a time of leisure. People who choose this type of living are happier, productive, and excel in their personal and professional lives because they spend more time enhancing their creative nature.

A work to live mindset has significant benefits than a live to work philosophy if you notice people live longer in other countries versus the U.S. because they promote the importance of a healthy work-life balance.

And so I want to give you a few tips on how to begin your work to live lifestyle.

  1. Prioritize your most important task you need to complete. Figure out the top three things you have to finish at your job so you will not spend time working overtime.
  2. Use your vacation time. Don’t let your vacation time build up instead be proactive by planning your vacation at the beginning of the year.
  3. Plan your exit strategy. If you are working a job that does not promote your ideal lifestyle start looking for different alternatives.

Pursuing Your Dream

Pursuing Your Dream

 

How many times have you looked at your life and realize you are not living the life you desire? Did someone tell you that your dream was unattainable? Or did you let society dictate to you what was more important in your life?

When we are children, we believe we can be anything we desire to be in life. No matter how ridiculous our dreams may seem, as a child, we believe in our thoughts. As we shift into the teenage years, we start to let society dictate to us which journey will be profitable. We begin to focus on reality instead of the desire of our dreams.

The child inside of us starts to disappear because reality becomes more important than our childhood dreams. Our lives no longer hold enthusiasm or passion; instead, our adulthood has made us apathetic. We begin to forget about the vision we had to live a life full of wonder, passion, and excitement. Our dreams have become faint whispers needing a fresh breath. What can we do to resuscitate our passion for pursuing our dreams?

  • The first step to pursuing your dream is to reconnect with your childhood dreams. When I was young, I enjoyed writing, and I remember my Uncle Dave would always tell me I was going to be a famous writer. I remember in 2003 while living in Sicily, my love for writing reignited when I read Maya Angelou’s poem “Phenomenal Woman” for open mic night. Four years later, I published my first poetry book. The little girl on the inside of me reconnected back with my lifelong dream to become a writer. It was up to me to answer the call!
  • The second step is to write a list of the the things that stopped you from pursuing your dreams. After you recognize the roadblocks begin to write a list of possibilities of following your dreams. (For example: Roadblock: I stopped pursuing my dream of painting because I didn’t think I was a great artist. Possibility: I can start taking art classes at a local gallery to brush up on my artistic skills.)
  • The last step is to surround yourself around people who are living your dream. When you surround yourself around like-minded people you are building a community of support. When you have a support system it fosters a life filled with enjoyment, creativity and success.

So pursue the life you desire instead of burying your dreams. Dreams are meant to be lived out loud!!!

Become the Picasso of Your Life

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In 2019, I realized to have a different year I needed to become the painter in my own life. So often I have allowed other people to paint their ideas, opinions, and theology for my life which resulted in forgery. Allowing others to paint on the canvas of your life causes fraudulent creations because you are letting them put their vision into action. It is essential to create a vision for your life and be the creator of it. When you put other people into the driver seat of your life it causes chaos. I am learning that when I have a vision, I can’t expect people to understand it or co-sign on it.

A vision is something that gives you clarity about the goals you want to accomplish. When you are not clear about the idea for your life society will cloud your judgment with their perspective. In 2019, it is time for you to take back the paintbrush and begin generating your life masterpiece.

Below I have three specific ways you can become the Picasso of your own life!

1.Create The Vision: Whether it is a vision board, vision journal or collage take the time to define your vision, this will help you see your goals clearly. Then you will be able to create action steps to accomplish them.

2.Stop Explaining Yourself: I have learned the hard way that sometimes it is better to keep your mouth shut. When you prematurely share your dreams, aspirations or goals with others sometimes it can discourage you if their input is not what you wanted to hear. True, we want everyone to be excited about our goals, our life and dreams but understand everyone will not understand the blueprint of your life. God individually designed your life to fit you and others validation is never needed.

3.Creativity is Messy: Understand that the road of life is not a straight line but filled with dead ends, detours and u-turns. When you are handed a blank canvas to create the vision for your dream life know that being flexible is essential. Many artist create beautiful masterpieces by understanding the first stages are messy.

 

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How do you plan to become the Picasso of your life in 2019? (Leave your comment below…)

3 Simple Ways to Make 2019 Your Best Year…

3 Simple Ways To make 2019 Your Best Year....

With the excitement of a new year comes resolutions, goals, and everything under the sun to make 2019 your best year. However, I have three simple ways you can make 2019 a year of ease.

Step 1: Mind Your Own Business.

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Life is so much easier when you learn to focus on your own life and tune into the present moment. When you focus on fine-tuning your life, you will find no time to be worried about what others are doing including obsessing on what other people are posting on social media. You will be able to accomplish your goals quicker and see the beauty in your life.

Step 2: Stay on Energy Saving Mode…

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So often we are exhausted and burnt out from fighting battles that are not our fight. We spend too much energy overthinking, fearing and obsessing over things that create distress.  We feel the need to give our opinion to every situation just to be consumed with other’s problems. When you preserve your power for the essential things in your life, you will be at peace. Exhaustion, stress, worry, and anxiety will slowly drift aside when you put your emotions on energy saving mode.

Step 3: Don’t Join The Circus….

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Every clown or court jester that begs for your attention does not need to be entertain. Two thousand nineteen is not the year to sign up for anyone’s circus of foolery be adamant about setting boundaries and ignoring the distraction. To live your best life in 2019, you will have to learn the power of ignoring things that don’t require your attention.

Comment below and tell me, which step you will focus on this month to make 2019 your best year? 

Self Care Essentials: Finding Your Zen…

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“What you seek is seeking you.” ~Rumi

In the last month or so my life has been filled with the unknown, I have found myself looking for answers in this unfamiliar place. However, I have learned the answers lie in between the moments of letting go. This entire year I learned the importance of letting go and detachment from things I can’t control. When I let go there is a moment of peace that comes with detaching myself from the outcome. I have learned to be more in tune with my mind, heart and soul.

These moments of zen have taught me the importance of releasing the struggle and embracing the ease. I have spent my entire life in survival mode, trying to stay afloat so the pressures of life would not overtake me. As I was struggling to stay afloat  I found myself drowning from the pressure of trying to keep it all together. I realize now that this facade kept me from becoming free, free from thriving to my fullest potential.

However, when I decided to stop fighting the flow of life things began to fall into place. I was able see things more clearly and implement self-care into my life. Self-care has taught me how to be present in the moment. It has also taught me how to be still, let go and flow in uncomfortable situations. Self-care has been a great teacher in showing me how to reconnect with my true essence.

So, below I have listed self-care essentials to help you find your zen and tap into the peace of mind you deserve.

1.Tea, Anyone? : Green tea and other teas have been linked to having many health benefits. I often drink tea to calm myself when I feel overwhelmed and full of anxiety. My favorite tea is Yogi Tea, this tea has a variety of teas that you can choose from to suit your needs. I often use the bedtime and ginger tea. Another great benefit is they add inspirational quotes on the tea bag label.

2. Candles: Candles can reduce your stress by adding some aromatherapy to your day. Here is a list of the best organic candles on the market Organic Candles

3. Music: Music is a great way to cultivate some calm in your everyday life. BMG Channel on YouTube is a great channel to listen to it has a variety of music for studying, relaxing etc.

4. Whoosah: Meditation is a great way to bring calm into your mind. The Calm App is an app I have used for years. It has various programs to help you get into your calm.

5. Selah: Taking time to hit pause in your life is a way to stop and listen to your inner self. Pause help you clear the noise, clear the clutter & reconnect with yourself.

So, which self-care essential will you use this holiday season ?, share your thoughts in the comment section!

The End of An Era……

The End of An Era

Wow, I can’t believe next week Sunday is my birthday. My 30’s journey has been a beautiful evolution of “self”. I have been able to spend the years of my thirties facing issues of my past, closing the door to my past, making intentional changes to my life and most of all becoming the woman I desire to be.

As a single mom I have endured many hardships and personal setbacks but my 30’s have been my years of reflection, refreshing, starting over again and creating the life I desire.

I have become comfortable in my own skin. I love the woman I have evolved into at this point in my life. However, I know the journey is a continuous process. I am excited about my future ahead.

Since, I am commemorating the last year of my 30’s, I am sharing 39 lessons with you I learned during my 30’s journey.

Here are the 39 lessons I learned in my 30’s:
1. Confidence. Confidence is something that starts within & it is something you work on everyday.
2. No validation needed. You are grown,stop asking for permission.
3. No is a complete sentence. Stop explaining yourself.
4. Mind your own business. It never matters what others are doing. Stay focused on your life.
5. No deprivation. Stop depriving yourself of the things you love & desire.
6. Know Your Worth. You have to know your worth to know what you deserve then you will stop giving discounts to people who undermine your quality.
7. Self-care is important. Self-care is about preservation. You have to put it into practice for all areas of your life (mental, emotional, financial, physical & spiritual).
8. Trust God. 
9. Get out your own way.
10. Ask for help.
11. Be gentle with yourself you are doing the best you can.
12. Stop procrastinating.
13. Do it afraid.
14. Get out your comfort zone.
15. Be your own best friend.
16. Speak up. You have a voice use it.
17. Stop chasing. You don’t have to chase a man, friends, people or dreams. All the things meant for you will come at the right time.
18. Travel somewhere new. 
19. Date yourself.
20. Believe in yourself.
21. Do what is best for you.
22. Be unapologetic about your greatness.
22. Set boundaries.
23. Spend time with those that celebrate you not tolerate you.
24. Celebrate yourself.
25. Be patience.
26. Saunter through life.
27. Let things flow.
28. Detach yourself from the outcome.
29. Stop the comparison. When you learn to value your life you will feel no need to compare your life to others.
30. Have faith.
31. Smile often, Laugh more.
32. Have fun. Include more bliss, pleasure & enjoyment in your life.
33. Be ok with not being ok.
34. Be vulnerable.
35. Live life. Don’t just exist live your life alive.
36. Reinvent yourself.
37. Reflect.
38. Pursue your dreams. No matter how old you are you can always pursue the things you desire.
39. Be limitless. Don’t put limitations on your life.

The Joy of Solitude….

The Joy of Solitude (2)

Long holiday weekends are warrant for spending time in solitude. This weekend was no exception. After spending the last two months suffering from exhaustion all I wanted to do is simply nothing. I can honestly confess I am tired of going hard; doing more to get more to be more.

When I lived overseas I cherished life in slow motion. Since I’ve been back in the U.S. life on autopilot is the norm. I constantly battle with this insane concept. So, I decided for the next 30 days I will spend time replenishing my mind, body and spirit.

I will take intentional time to slow down and be present in the moment. It is refreshing to be still, marinating in life’s precious moments. Below, I made a list of  ways you can replenish yourself.

1. Read your favorite novel.

2. Take a lavender epsom salt bath.

3. Unplug from social media for a day, week, month or year.

4. Take a walk without your phone.

5. Sleep.

6. Meditate.

7. Get creative and color.

8. Go to the beach.

9. Watch a sunrise.

10. Watch a sunset.

11. Go to a bookstore.

12. Staycation; reserve a hotel room in your local town.

13. Binge watch your favorite Amazon Prime show or Netflix episodes.

14. Stay in your house all day.

15. Cook your favorite meal.

16. Listen to your favorite music streaming station.

17. Aromatherapy; buy some aromatherapy candles & burn them in your house.

These are just a few ways you can replenish your mind, body and spirit. I dare you to make your own list and spend a day, week or month in replenishment. How are you going to replenish yourself this summer?

 

 

 

Losing The Weight…..

Letting Go

When you think of the words “losing the weight” I am sure a flood of ideas come to your mind. These three words can be interpreted in various ways but, for me losing the weight has been my 2018 journey. In the last five months I have found myself lost in translation, no longer identifying with my old system of beliefs but embracing new beliefs. The things I allowed to define me no longer could fit into my new belief system.

Fear was a weight that held me back from living my best life. Once I began to lose the weight of fear I began to see my life unfold. When you allow fear to run your life you stay in a comfort zone. And you know nothing brilliant or great grows from comfort zones.

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Below is a few ideas to help you lose the weight of fear:

1. Do It AfraidIn order to face your fears you have to be brave enough to do it in the midst of your fear.

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2. Assess Your Beliefs. More than likely what you fear is not supported by truth or fact so let it go and collect new data. F.E.A.R is False Evidence Appearing Real!

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3. Feed Faith, Starve Fears. In order to weaken the hold of fear you have to be willing to starve it and feed your life with faith which creates confidence.

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4. Rock Confidence. Fear can’t reside where confidence overrides. In order to fear-less you have to believe in yourself. Confidence gives you the faith to conquer fear.

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So, which idea will you use this week to help you lose the weight of fear. Comment below in the comment section…

 

The Importance of Reinventing Yourself…

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In the last three months I can truly say I have been on an inner personal journey . I am learning how to face my fears, be vulnerable and communicate in an authentic way. Nonetheless, each journey has introduced me to a different me. I am evolving out of my cocoon and flourishing into a beautiful butterfly. I know as I evolve reinvention becomes an important part of the journey. Reinvention is the key to growth in life.

If you think about it companies are always reinventing their brands to appeal to different demographics. Companies take time to reassess what has worked for their brand and what has not worked for them. Just like a company, we should always reassess ourselves to see what methods in our lives are working and which ones need to be eliminated. Reinvention is the answer to transforming our lives into something new.

Below I will share three concepts on why reinventing yourself is so important.

1) Pain changes you. When we endure a tragedy in our lives it has the power to change us. I remember in 2007 when my two-year old daughter died it changed my life forever.  The power of losing a loved one changed my perspective on life. Pain causes you to step back, assess your lose and recreate a better you.

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2) Starting Over. Sometimes it is hard to start over but starting over gives you a new outlook on life. It opens you up to many possibilities of living a life of adventure.

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3) Nothing grows from a comfort zone. If you find yourself frustrated, irritated or annoyed nine times out of ten you are outgrowing the space you occupy. Many people allow fear to keep them hostage to their comfort zone. The biggest thing I have learned is that comfort zones are great but nothing phenomenal or extraordinary grows out of them.

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Pain, starting over and escaping your comfort zone are essential things that help you reinvent your life. Reinventing yourself is important so it can unlock extraordinary things. So today, I challenge you to evolve past the norm and be intentional about reinventing an area of your life that seems stagnant. Once you begin the process you will  see life from a different perspective!

Life Is An Adventure….

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At the end of 2017,  I learned a valuable lesson concerning the complexity of life. The lesson taught me to embrace all the things life has to offer. It is easy for us to celebrate the good things but can we rejoice in tribulation.

Everything we endure in life is meant to help us grow and expand our horizon. True, sometimes the difficult times make it hard to celebrate. But when life brings unexpected moments we have to realize the messy parts make life interesting.

The messy parts challenge us to see our lives as a perfect masterpiece curated by God. As our lives are designed by every path we begin to understand that it is an adventure.

Life’s adventures gives us the passion to experience each moment. Instead of rushing through the moments we start to saunter. Sauntering ignites self-awareness; being present in the moment. When we are totally present our senses become alive.

Whether good or bad life is an adventure worth experiencing. Without the experiences life beomes mundane. So, if your life seems hopeless right now just remember your next adventure is waiting. All you have to do is embrace it and enjoy the ride!

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