The Importance of Contemplation and Gratitude

“Gratitude is not a passive response to something we have been given, gratitude arises from paying attention, from being awake in the presence of everything that lives within and without us!”

I was going to write about this later in the month of December but after the events of my weekend, I knew I had to write it today!  

Saturday night was pretty normal, I went to sleep around 12:30am, and at around 1:30am Brandon woke me up because he was having severe pains in his abdomen and chest.  After I saw how panicked he was, and how much pain he was in we decided to head to the E.R.  They were amazing and got us straight in…and immediately ruled out his heart as causing the pain – which was a huge relief!

We were taken back to a room where then took blood for some further testing, put him on monitors etc. etc. and kept checking in with us about every 1/2 hour.  After they had ascertained that it wasn’t a heart issue, they ruled out gallbladder and gave him a G.I. cocktail.  It is basically Lidocaine and Maalox, and after about 1 hour his pain was almost gone.  

It took hours to get the labs back, and when they did they thought he could be suffering from pancreatitis, so to rule that out they had him eat some crackers.  Because there was no pain from that, and the fact that the cocktail made him feel better, they thought it was very likely to be acid reflux with esophageal spasm.  

OK, so I know that was a very detailed story, and the reason I wanted to share all of that with you was because that is kind of what kept me going.  I immediately went into the role of helping him, being there for him and not even thinking about the fact that I hadn’t had any sleep.  

As I contemplate my life with Brandon, I realize that I haven’t always been the most amazing wife, I sometimes let my needs be all consuming, and because of my past life and relationship experiences I have, at times, not allowed myself to be completely vulnerable and present with him.  Going through something like we did on Saturday night, even though it turned out that it wasn’t life threatening, we didn’t know that when we were in it.  It certainly made me pause to be grateful for having him in my life.

Adding a pop of color to this fabulous leopard dress – shop my post by clicking the links below

Do you ever find yourself being so caught up in living your life that you don’t have time to appreciate how amazing your life is?  I was talking to a friend who also has kids that are getting older now, and we both agreed that having young kids was one of the best times in our lives…but when I was raising a house full of boys, the chaos, the mess, the tantrums, and the lack of freedom sometimes caused me to wish away those years to the day that I would be able to leave them at home alone!  Now that my boys are getting older, I have less and less control, I hate that they are not the snuggly little boys that they used to be and I wish I could bring back all the wonder and excitement they had around learning new things.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love my life, and I love this stage of my kids too – I have definitely learned not to wish away the time, but I am also grateful for all the younger years too.  The years that both they were and I was younger…the years that they were excited to go to the movies with their parents and hanging out with us was always a first choice 😉

There are so many things that I feel gratitude for, especially at this time of year, because I allow myself enough time to slow down and notice the things that are important in our lives.  Having a family I love, working side by side with my husband helping people improve their lives, having a home I love, friends I couldn’t live without, sharing my experiences and hopefully helping others know that they are capable of anything they set their mind to via my blog and so much more.

I choose to pause and feel gratitude every day so that when I contemplate what I have in my life I don’t have any regrets…and that I am able to share my appreciation and love with others!

What would you answer if you asked yourself every day “what do I have to be thankful for RIGHT NOW”…even when things are going wrong, there is always something to feel gratitude for!

Create Your Own Day

 

“Ask yourself – what’s really important and then have the courage and wisdom to build your life around the answer!”

 

I recently came across this concept and I absolutely fell in love with it…

It’s the concept of creating your own day.  What I mean is, other than your birthday, what day do you use to celebrate YOU?  I have found that my birthday, as enjoyable as it is, is never really just about me – not in a bad way, but it involves celebrations, dinners, and very often I have to work.  So when I came across this concept I immediately latched onto it.

Here’s the thought…Make a day your own.  Create a celebration of you and spend time doing whatever it is that sets your soul on fire.  If it’s being alone, then do that, if you prefer to be with friends or family, do that.  Ultimately the goal is to take a day to reflect on where you are in your life, what you’ve accomplished, how you feel about yourself, what you are grateful for and so on.  My theory (I haven’t actually tried it yet) is that I will feel rejuvenated, I will find it easier to handle stresses, challenges, disappointments and it will reaffirm why I love my life.  I know, no matter what, there are always things that aren’t the best that are happening in our lives, but when you start to look at how things are happening FOR you and not TO you, it can change your perspective.

I haven’t decided the date I am going to celebrate my day, but I’ll give you some ideas of what I love to do so that maybe you can come up with some of your own or use some of mine:

  1. I will workout in the morning, that way I know no matter what happens during the day, I feel good about me knowing I am taking care of my body.
  2. I will get a massage, a pedicure or a facial.  Just a few things that are focused on self-care and love.
  3. I will have a lunch at one of my favorite lunch spots with a friend that I know will lift me up.
  4. I will do a little shopping – it actually relaxes me.
  5. I will find the best bakery in town and get myself the most decadent dessert (I have to because there’s no birthday cake 😉 ) And I won’t feel guilty because I worked out already.
  6. I will go for a drive up the canyon and take in all the beauty.  I love to drive different ways, see different things and feel appreciation.  If the weather is warm enough I will trade the drive for a bike ride.  I love taking my mountain bike into the foothills and getting dusty while I am enjoying the view.
  7. I will go to dinner with my lovely husband, because he’s the one that can make me feel the most amazing of all.

 

 

 

It may seem silly, but if there is something I can do to help in the self care department or something that will help me remember that I am important and that ME taking care of ME doesn’t have to mean neglecting anyone else.  in fact, it is necessary to take care of me, so that I CAN take care of others.

What do you think about this concept?  Are you on board?

My birthday is February and I hate that I can’t do a lot of the things I love because the weather is usually cold, so I will probably plan MICHELLE DAY for a day in the spring or summer…stay tuned!  I’ll post some pics 🙂

you can shop some coats similar to the one I’m wearing by clicking the links below…

 

 

Living in a Masculine World

“In a world where masculinity is respected and femininity is regularly dismissed.  It takes an enormous amount of strength and confidence for any person to embrace their feminine self!”

You’ve probably heard me talk about how I have 4 boys…but I’m not sure if I mentioned that when we bought my dog my ONLY request (because I really didn’t want a dog) was that it would be a female.  I am sure you can guess where this is going – my dog’s name is Rooney (after Wayne Rooney who used to play for Manchester United my favorite football/soccer team) and he is a male dog.

I live in a house where there is more testosterone than most people would know how to handle, but let me explain why I am equipped.  I grew up the oldest of 3 kids, and you’ve guessed it, I have 2 younger brothers – no sisters.  I have never known the likes of the drama that can come from living in a home with girls, nor have I ever had the pleasure to have a sister to share my deepest thoughts and secrets with.  I know this is why I take my friendships so seriously – they are an escape for me from my current environment and I consider them the sisters I chose.

Even though I live surrounded by all this masculinity, I have never lost my love for my feminine side, in fact, I think I am able to embrace it even more because of what I see around me.  I love sports, I love cars, I am not a pushover (and those of you that know me, know this is quite an understatement), I am handy and love to do home projects and fix things, but I also love to shop, cook and make the most of how I look.  I don’t think I am an anomaly, I just think I am not afraid to be who I want to be without worrying about what I think I SHOULD be.

 

 

Unfortunately we still live in a time where, as a woman, we have to prove ourselves over and over, where we are not always given opportunities to rise to the top in careers, and sometimes we are even blatantly discriminated against.  Guess what, however someone else treats us doesn’t have to determine how successful we are.  Rising to top in anything requires tenacity, persistence, patience as well as confidence, and these things only come when we are not bitter, resentful or frustrated.  Believe me, in my career I tried pretty much every angle to achieve my goals and quite honestly the only thing that did work for me was just being ME and not giving up no matter what.  I found that when I embraced my femininity and inner confidence that I felt when I did that, I was able to attract more positivity to my life which also brought more success, fulfillment and happiness.

I found that when I became too aggressive (which I know I have a tendency to do) I intimidated people, which actually gave me negative results.  At the time I didn’t realize that my aggression and frustration was causing people to want to move away from me, which included clients, my husband, my kids, my friends, and so on.  It’s a weird thing when you feel that people don’t want to be around you, especially when you sit down and think about why that might be and take accountability for your actions in the whole equation.

Life is filled with things we can’t change, and the only way we can work through those things is if we accept that we have no control over them.  Letting go is the most freeing feeling, but it requires practice.  It doesn’t mean that you are always going to like it, but it means you are able to move on despite how you feel.

I love the fact that I get to be the only girl in my house – sometimes the smells, the disorganization, the untidiness, the laziness, and the constant meal making can be a little much, but quite honestly, I wouldn’t change it for anything.  I feel blessed that I can come home and one or more of the “boys” in my house will give me a 20 second hug which is exactly what I need to ease away the stress from my workday.

Staying feminine when all around you is masculine is an art, its a habit, and it is a path to success in business.  In any relationship (whether personal or professional) there needs to be a masculine and feminine energy, and most men like to take the masculine lead.  If they take that lead the best way for you to have success and create a connection in that relationship is by being the feminine you.  I feel very fortunate as a woman to be able to be strong and confident and I don’t have to give up my femininity to do it.

 


Release your Inner Power

 

“I’m street, so look both ways before you cross me!”

 

I had to post today’s quote because it reminds me that I have that whole other level inside me that kicks in when I really want to accomplish something.

Do you know what I mean when I say that? Do you have that smolder inside you that lies dormant until someone tells you that you can’t do something or tries to stop you from achieving your goals.  I didn’t realize how strong mine was until I really sat and thought about what I wanted to be when I grow up.  I know, seems kind of crazy, but you could call it mid-life crisis or just a heightened awareness, but I definitely reached the point in my life where I didn’t feel fulfilled or happy with what I was doing.

I am sure some of you can relate to this in some way.  Is there an area of your life where you are not feeling fulfilled?  It could be your job, it could be your home life, it could be school…there are many ways to feel unfulfilled.  So what do you do when you find yourself in this place?  The simple answer is to change it…but that’s not always feasible.

I found myself in this place a few years ago, so I knew that I had to make a change.  I had to decide if I would be happy if I was in the same place in a year or even 10 years.  Obviously my answer was no, so that’s when I knew that I had to think about what I did want to be doing.  It took me some time to ponder this question, months even, but when I came to the realization that it was important to me to help people, I knew what I had to do.

That’s when I called on that inner gangster & determination that I knew was inside me because I had used it many times before.  The easy part is knowing what you want to do, the hard part comes when you have to slog away day after day, being consistent, undeterred and motivated (even when you don’t feel like it).  This is when the grit comes in. That part inside you that doesn’t doubt you can put in the work necessary to get it done.

 

 

One of Brandon’s favorite shows is Shark Tank, and recently I have been watching it with him.  I have found it so interesting to see these people that literally started with nothing, come up with an idea and grow that idea sufficiently that they are qualified to make it onto a show on TV.  I love seeing their belief in what they are doing, I love seeing them overcome fear day after day – because that’s what I know I must do.  It helps me know that I’m not alone, and that the only way anything happens in this world is if we believe enough in it and in ourselves to make it happen.

So what if, inside you, there is this inner bad girl with grit just waiting to help you accomplish your dreams?  What if I told you that it is there – you just need to find a way to harness it.  It’s no that it’s easier for some than others, it’s just that some will do whatever it takes to make it happen – they believe that much in themselves.

I may be that girl that eats organic foods, believes in the environment, believes that people and their feelings are more important than ideas, but I still love to listen to rap music.  I still love to be walking the line of conformity, because I know that when I am open, loving and real, that’s when I am able to feel love and fulfillment in my life.

Sometimes I feel the need to show the outside world that I am not just a pretty face, but I have an attitude and I’m not afraid to use it…that’s why I chose today’s more casual, get stuff done, inner bad girl look 😉

Shop my look by clicking the links below…

 


Boost your Confidence – Wear Fur

 

“She always stood out from the crowd so she decided to embrace it and just be exactly who she was!”

 

I don’t own a “real” fur, but I have to admit I have quite a few fur coats, jackets and then some with fur accents like the Leather one in this post.  I love it because no matter what I am wearing, when I add fur it just elevates the whole look and makes me look and feel classy (not to mention the fact that it also keeps me warm).

Wearing fur can be a little intimidating for a lot of people, because it’s definitely one of those things that really makes you stand out.  In today’s post I am showing just a few of the fur coats and a jacket with fur detail so you can see the many ways to wear it.  I do realize that not everyone is going to want to wear things exactly like I like, so as well as posting links to shop the coats I am wearing, I have also included some links that are not quite so bold (see the bottom of the page).

 

 

Over this Thanksgiving weekend I was speaking with Dalton, my oldest son, and asking what he wanted for Christmas.  He said that he pretty much just wanted cologne, shoes and clothes.  Right after he had finished telling me, he paused and said “I don’t want all STYLEQUEENIE clothes though!”  When I asked him what he meant he said that he’s OK with some things that are flashy but he didn’t want me to buy everything according to what I like, which apparently he thinks is too “flashy”.  I had a choice, to get offended or just take it for what it is and realize that not everyone is going to like the same things as me, and just move on.  I chose to move on and take it as a compliment – I like being flashy, I like to stand out – there’s nothing wrong with that, I’m just being ME.  It’s also OK that he doesn’t want to do that…it’s OK that he is who he is supposed to be as well.

I have always encouraged my kids to be themselves and express themselves how they want to in their style – but this also means that I sometimes have to take them out wherever we are going looking a little less put together than I would like.  The good news is that now they are all a little older, there are very few times that they are not presentable, and they feel validated.  They feel like they are free to be themselves! This was a lesson I was taught by my dad.  I have always enjoyed dressing differently than others, and as I was growing up, my dad always told me “if you look good, feel good and it makes you happy, then you shouldn’t worry about how others view you.”  I 100% agree with that statement and it has definitely guided me many times in my life – especially the part about not worrying what others think.  I have found that when I like the way I look and I don’t judge myself, then that also is how others see me and there is no way that their view can negatively impact me.

So does fur make you flashy?  Well, it can, it just depends on how you wear it, and how much confidence you have in yourself.  There is one thing for sure though, it is definitely going to get cold and fur can keep you warm.

Why not add a little fur into your life – and increase your wow factor?

Shop my looks and more by clicking the links below (the best part, it’s Cyber Monday so there are some steals!)…

 

 


Motivational Monday

“The biggest source of motivation are your own thoughts, so why not think BIG!”

You may have noticed that I like to post a quote each day, and that they tie into the theme I am writing out that day.  You may be asking yourself why I do that, so I thought I would fill you in…

I have talked a little about why I started this blog and what it has meant to me, but there’s definitely more to it than I have have spilled the beans on already.  For example, when I write a blog post, the reason I do it is because it is something that resonates with me that day and I feel that by sharing what thoughts I have that it might also help someone else as well.  I have found that when I have thoughts about something, when I am feeling a certain way, it really helps me to focus on handling it rather than avoiding it.  It is pretty much the story of my life and it is definitely worked for me to come at something “head on”.  I choose quotes that serve as motivation for me, and they help me focus on overcoming whatever I am going through at that time…or at least serve as a reminder of what I need to do.

We all have storms in our lives, and I am definitely no exception.  I really need to remind myself constantly to be strong, to weather the storms, to feel grateful, to be patient, to remember why I am here and so much more.  So when I post something about gratitude for example, it’s because on that day I realize that I need to focus on gratitude rather than the fact that something might not be working out for me!

I have found that my mindset is absolutely what controls my outcome.  When I feel positive I am much more likely to achieve what I am striving for, or at the very least, be OK with whatever comes my way.  Do you ever wonder why when something bad happens that more bad seems to show up as well?  I have seen it time and time again in my life, and being lucky enough to be married to a mindset coach, I have learned that focus is absolutely what needs to change if we want results to change.

Now don’t get me wrong, just changing how you think isn’t going to change everything in your life, action is still required, but positive action starts with positive thoughts.

 

 

Do you have habits that you wish you didn’t have?  The best news about habits is that they can be changed at any time in your life…and just as they were started, habits can only be changed by repetition of what you want to replace your old habit with.  For example, if you want to change the way you eat (kind of like the post I wrote on Friday), then you have to create new habits that embody the way you want to eat in the future.  Think about why you want to change, what it means to you, what it would mean if you didn’t do it and how it could affect anyone else around you.  Once you reach the point of pain where it hurts too much to continue the old habit, that’s when you will be motivated enough to change.

The key to changing those old habits, because positive thinking is not all that’s needed like I said, is to realize that there is a COST associated with not changing.  I have had many times in my life where old habits are stopping me from getting where I want to be in relationships and in business.  Here’s one of my habits that I have had to change to make my relationship with Brandon excellent:  I have always been someone that is not big on talking about my feelings in a relationship, I have never been a big talker and I always felt like because Brandon wanted to talk about EVERYTHING that it meant there was something wrong and I was being told that I was doing something wrong.  You see, Brandon (and actually 2 of my kids) are people that need to problem solve by talking things through, and I am a person that internalizes what I am going through and just handles it on my own 99% of the time.  As you can imagine, me not being a talker and having a husband that needs that could cause huge problems in our relationship.  For many years I fought it, I thought “why should I have to be the one to change?”  “This is just the way I am”, but eventually I realized that I wouldn’t actually be giving something up to give Brandon and my kids this gift.  I started to open up more, to talk things through and learn how to not “own” whatever it was they were going through and to not try to fix it.

Once I started creating a space where I was open, the conversations became easier, and now (not that I still get it right all the time) but I am definitely on the road to making this my normal behavior rather than just shutting down.  It wasn’t until I realized that the cost to NOT do it was higher than it was to DO it, that’s when I was able to change my habit.  It was worth it to me to be there for Brandon and my kids, and guess what I found out, it actually wasn’t just who I was, and I started to be able to feel empathy and just listen – something that was hard before because I very often could see something and want to just fix it.

Whatever you have going on in your life, I hope that you will find at least a little motivation from my posts and quotes…and if there’s a topic you would especially love to see – i’m all ears!!

Happy Monday!

XOXO

 


That Vogue Feeling

“Life is a mirror – what you see from your outside comes from your inside!”

 

Whether you’re like I was when I started this blog and hate having your picture taken, or even if you don’t mind at all, there are definitely some pictures that you HATE and those that you LOVE!

Thankfully in this digital age and with fast shutter speeds a lot of the pictures I have taken manage to capture me without my eyes closed, and some even make me have that “Vogue” feeling – where I feel like I could actually be a model.  Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t ACTUALLY think I could be in Vogue magazine, but I have learned to appreciate my beauty and definitely love finding good pictures of me.

The reason I am telling you this is that it is so important for us to see our own beauty, and like the quote says, true beauty comes from being beautiful on the inside too.  I have known a lot of people in my life that may not have had the most attractive features but once I got to know them, I realized that they were the most beautiful of all people…because they radiated that inner beauty.  The same can be said for those people that have the perfect features, and are pleasing to the eye, if they are not beautiful on the inside, that will eventually show and they won’t be seen as beautiful people.  Do you remember that movie “Shallow Hal” with Jack Black and it had a cameo from Tony Robbins who actually taught him to see the inside and not just the outside.  Once he did that he started overlooking people’s outside flaws and saw them for who they really are.

OK, so I know that Tony Robbins is not going to actually do that for each of us, but here’s a great way we can start:  We can see ourselves as beautiful, recognize beauty in others (and not just appearance beauty but the real stuff) and the more that we look for it, the more we will see it (including in ourselves).  I know a lot of people that can truly see beauty in others but have a hard time seeing it in themselves.  For whatever reason they don’t like to look for it.  Here’s what I’ll tell you, just like the lack of inner beauty eventually shows, so does the real beauty and no matter what, even if you kid yourself that you aren’t actually beautiful or deserve love, guess what, it’s going to come out in the end.  You may as well see it for yourself because it’s not something that can be permanently hidden.

 

Shop my outfit & more by clicking the links below

 

 

Perhaps it’s a worthiness, where because of something in your past you don’t feel worthy of love or anyone’s praise?  Perhaps you have heard your entire life that you aren’t beautiful from someone you trusted or loved?  Or it could even be that you have faced some type of bullying or abuse?  The only way you can change your past is by changing your future.  If you’re still believing what someone told you, how you felt, and you’re ultimately agreeing with what they said or did, then you are still allowing that person or situation to control you.  Maybe i’m the only one that has a problem with control, but I can tell you, something like that wouldn’t sit well with me – I definitely wouldn’t want to feel that someone or something else had power over me.

Don’t get me wrong, there have been times in my life when I have felt “less than” because of someone’s behavior, because of not meeting unrealistic expectations I put on myself, and many more reasons.  So, when I did eventually come to my senses and realize that in order to move through something I had to just let go, that’s when everything changed.  I have been known to have a hard time letting things go, i’m not going to lie, so when I tell you that I did it, just know that it didn’t happen overnight.  In fact it took years, and during that time when I didn’t let go I was absolutely miserable.  I had this notion that everyone should know what an injustice had been done to me, that it just wasn’t fair, and honestly I thought I was fighting back, but what I realized is that what I was doing was perpetuating the situation.

So how do we move through something so that we can start to see our beauty (and not just the mirror reflection kind of beauty)?  The easy answer is just change your thoughts, but that’s easier said than done.  So honestly, here’s what it will take…repetition, telling ourself that we are beautiful, so that eventually we start to see what others see.  And here’s the best news, as you start to see beauty in yourself, the beauty around you becomes so much more pronounced and life just starts to seem rosier!

I don’t about you but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with looking at the world through rose colored glasses – who knows we might actually start to find things and people we didn’t even know existed.

Happy Wednesday – you’ve made it to the middle of the week, there’s definitely beauty in that!

 

 

 

 

Remember the 5th of November

“If you don’t do wild things when you’re young, you’ll have nothing to smile about when you’re old!”

For those of you that know anything about the history of England you will know that today, the 5th of November, is when we celebrate Bonfire Night.  Guys Fawkes was the reason Bonfire Night started, and his story is pretty gruesome.  He tried and failed to blow up the Houses of Parliament, was held as a prisoner in the Tower of London until he was executed.  So, being a country strong on tradition, ever since then we have celebrated his failed gunpowder plot by putting a stuffed Guy Fawkes on top of a bonfire and burning it to the ground.  Kind of crazy when you think about the history, but as I was growing up I didn’t realize all that history (as I am sure many of the youth now don’t either) I just enjoyed a time to hang out with friends and family, with treacle toffee, parched peas, parkin (to name just a few of the foods we ate) along with some fireworks.

Since obviously we don’t celebrate the 4th of July in England, this was when we got to let off our fireworks and have a good time.  I must admit, I do much prefer fireworks in the summer than in November when the nights can be very cold and quite often rainy.

You might be wondering why I am telling you about this good old English tradition – well obviously the first reason is that today is the 5th November, but secondly it’s because as I sit over the other side of the Atlantic from my home country I realize that there are a lot of things, whether the reason behind them are great or not, that I miss about England.  I have traveled back there now twice in the past 2 years, and the more I go the more I realize that I had an amazing upbringing and I am very happy for the life my parents gave me over there.

There is a lot to be said about tradition and nostalgia.  There are a great many traditions that I brought over with me and I share with my family.  Remembering where we came from is a huge part in recognizing and being grateful for where we are today.  I have no plans to move back to England, however, I miss my friends, and I definitely miss a lot of the history that is everywhere over there.  It has made me feel like I want to take my kids (now that they are older) to see some of the sights, to walk down memory lane with me, and to see where I grew up.  My youngest two boys have never been over there, and I think they would love some of the places – who doesn’t love a castle or two?!

There have been times in my life when I have gone through hard things, one of which was moving over here to the US as a single mum…but now as I look back I can be grateful for that trying experience because it shaped me into who I am today.  So as I sit and think about my life and the things that have made me stronger, I feel nothing but gratitude and appreciation.  There are rewards from trials but only if we let ourselves surrender to the good that came from it.  I know in some things it is harder to find something good that came from it – and it may be something as simple as meeting someone that helped you through or admitting to yourself that you need help (a challenge for me)…

Wherever you’re from, whatever you have been through, looking back at your life with fondness and love is the only way that you can move through today into the rest of your life.  After all, nothing can drag you down if you’re not holding on to it!!

Have a fabulous Monday…

You can shop my outfit and similar pieces by clicking the links below…

 

Pursue your Dreams

“Dreams and goals are important in our lives – we should not give up on our dreams your dreams is not as important as what you become by achieving your dreams!”

 

When you were little and someone asked you who or what you wanted to be what did you tell them?  I had a dream to be a Doctor and more specifically an OB Gyn, which changed to an Optometrist when I realized I could only handle births that had happy endings.  I studied pre-med for my Associates Degree and then my Bachelors was in Physiology with Microbiology.  Sounds like I was on track, right?  Well, what I found out along the way was that I actually didn’t like to be tied down to something, have a rigid structure or simply that I really didn’t like to be told what to do.  As you can imagine, that would never be the case with anything in the medical field, so I decided to look into sales instead.

My dad had been a very successful salesman for all of my life, and I had realized that he had enormous amounts of flexibility, make amazing money and had lots and lots of vacation.  Obviously all three of those things were selling points for me, so that’s how I ended up where I am today.

I don’t feel like I gave up on any of my dreams, or at least I didn’t until a couple of years ago, and that is the time when I started working more with Brandon and started by blog.  I knew I wanted to give back, I knew I wanted to help people, and I knew I loved fashion.  For a long time I had no idea how those things could possibly tie together, but I am starting to figure that out now.

Dreams and goals are so important in our lives.  In order to achieve the big goals we have to be willing to set smaller ones and work towards achieving them.  At some point in our lives we have all achieved SOMETHING and the feeling that we get when we achieve something, well that’s what keeps us on track for bigger and better things.  It doesn’t mean that fear doesn’t creep in or that we sometimes have to change our direction or tactics, but what it does mean is that a dream or goal is just that – something that we get to turn into reality by constant effort, drive, determination and resilience.

 

A fun Fall look – you can shop my look and similar by clicking any of the links below
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Have you ever been told by someone that you wouldn’t be able to do something?  I know I have.  When I was in High School in England I had a teacher that didn’t like me and had no confidence in me.  In fact she actually told me that I should set my sights lower than being a Doctor.  I have to admit it was probably because I wasn’t the best student, but shhh! don’t tell my kids that.  Regardless, that kind of negativity is bound to have an impact on even the most confident person.  I am pretty tough, but I can tell you, for a while I actually started to believe that I wasn’t smart, that I wasn’t going to be able to do what I wanted to do and even worse, that I wasn’t good enough.  Not believing in yourself is probably one of the worst things you can do to yourself.  It is what depression is made of, it can create anxiety and even thoughts of suicide.

Having a dream is something that can create sunshine on even the darkest day, but only if you realize that in order to get what you’re dreaming of, you actually have to put in some effort.  I know there has been a lot of information out there about “manifesting” your dreams, and don’t get me wrong, we absolutely attract to ourselves the things we focus on, but it still requires work, dedication and commitment – and when you combine those things with focusing on the dream, that’s when it becomes more attainable.  I’m not saying that good things won’t ever happen to you without work, because I have had great things happen to me…but it is also not the norm.  I used to have a boss that always told me “the harder you work, the luckier you are” and I believe that 100% because that is what I saw in my business.

No matter what you believe, remember that having a dream and pursuing that dream is not something you should ever give up!

Happy Wednesday – dream on!!

 

 

 

The Power of Music

 

“And for that one moment while the music plays.  You know who you are and everything you wish to be!”

 

Do you have a ritual or something you do that gets you ready for a hard task you need to complete, or to just make you feel better?  Music can have such a positive influence in our lives if we find the right music to get us pumped up.

There are so many options out there for good music, and there are so many bad ones as well.  I am more drawn to a beat than I am the words, but definitely the words (especially if they aren’t good words) do have an impact on us.  I love to listen to a wide variety of music, and I tend to focus on certain types to achieve different results.  When I am wanting to feel like I want to dance or just feel good, I listen to rap, hip hop, R&B, a little pop and disco.  I like NWA (I know, not typical), I love Mary J Blige, P!nk can really get me pumped up, love a little Rihanna, Drake, Travis Scott, and so many others.  If I want to feel inspired I listen to songs like “This is Me” from the Greatest Showman, “Unstoppable” by Sia, and a few others that help me to remember why I am here and how great I should feel about myself.

Music has been used to centuries for inspiration, and many other reasons, so there must be something to this theory.  I have had times in my working career where I could become distracted by negativity, and I would use music through headphones to block out the “noise” and help me to focus on the things that were important.  As I have been working with Brandon and going to his Live events, we use music to create a certain mood.  We use it to help people get out of their comfort zones, and I have seen it work amazing wonders. In fact, the more I see it, the more I want to use it in my life.

He goes through a ritual every morning and listens to music to wake him up, to get him ready to take on the day and the make sure his mind is in the place it needs to be so that he can be there for the people that NEED him.  I love that music can do that, I love that just by listening to the beat, the words and by letting that music take you places, you can honestly change your state and put yourself in a better mood, create the energy you need to accomplish anything if you really want to put your mind to it.

 

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Even when I am at home and I have to clean the house, the task doesn’t seem so bad when I have music on and it can take me away from what I am doing.  Driving long distances in the car becomes a lot more tolerable when you can listen to some great music.

As I started to think about Brandon’s LIVE events, his morning ritual and the feelings that I have when I listen to some music that speaks to me, I started to think more and more about it.  What I realized is that music and it’s artists really do have a power, and it’s there for us to use if we choose to!  We can harness the power of music and use it to our advantage.  You may already be doing it without even being aware, but my guess is that if you set yourself up with a great routine or ritual of listening to inspirational and motivational music before you do something that is important to you, the results will actually end up being better.

I have a few playlists loaded in my iPhone, different ones for different reasons, so that when I am working out, driving to work or a meeting, or even just having a hard emotional time, I can call on that playlist to help me change my state.

As I sit writing this post I have some background music, not something that distracts me from what I am writing, but rather music that makes me FEEL so that I can be real and write something that hopefully resonates with you.  You’ll have to let me know…;)

Now Monday is here, and let’s be honest Monday’s don’t have the best reputation, why not start incorporating more “good” music into your life.  Should you choose to accept this challenge – I would love to hear how it worked for you.

Have a great week!