Back in December, I posted a little something about how to do nothing. I wanted to encourage everyone to take a little mental health day after the holidays. After all the chaos from Thanksgiving til New Years, we need to unwind.
Well, here we are past the half way mark of 2017. I am realizing that I, along with many of the people I know and love, once again need to schedule a Do Nothing Day. We have longer days and we are trying to fill them with as much living as we can. What we call relaxation looks remarkably similar to cramming things into our calendar because we are afraid of missing out. Continue reading →
Philanthropy does not need to be boring. It can be fun.
I know what you’re thinking. A rubbery chicken dinner and a basket raffle do not usually a good time make (unless you win the basket and it is full of stuff you really like and would not have purchased for yourself anyway, then all of a sudden it’s a lot more enjoyable).
Would you like to give back and have a little bit of fun along the way? Would you like to complete the summer having done something a little more epic and make the world a better place at the same time? How about a chance to go on an all-expense paid vacation to somewhere like Hawaii?
We regularly have opportunities in our life that show up unplanned.
The best things in my life came as a surprise to me. My husband, three of my career tracks, some of the friends I have, and some really cool experiences I had never had even thought to want all appeared when I least expected it.
The irony here is that, in general, I don’t like surprises. I like my goals set, and life well planned and documented in my calendar in advance. As most people who have made it to adulthood know, the universe laughed at this! I have been thrown a lot of surprises, both good and bad. The bad helped me find strength and perseverance but the good has brought me so much happiness.Continue reading →
Quit saying, “I’ll be happy when…” or “Things will be good if…”
Stop trying to choreograph it with grand gestures.
All of that just wastes so much of our natural happiness resources! Every time we do that kind of thing we are ignoring the very things, moments, events that we could be reveling in now. And that is sad.
I did a very scientific poll (facebook, twitter, email, phone calls) and asked people for their definition of success. Most of the answers were different phrasings on one of my favorite quotes and what I use to define success:
“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. “- Maya Angelou
Being generous is the natural side effect of living a happy and fulfilled life. It is also the antidote for when we feel lost or blue. It can take our focus off ourselves and make us pay attention to the world around us. It serves both us and the receivers of our generosity. It is empowering.
Many times people equate giving with cash. If you have the means, then go ahead and share but what if you don’t? While monetary philanthropy is important, it is a narrow way to be generous. There are many other ways to share with others.
Instant gratification is sexier than delayed gratification. It’s decadent, indulgent, and it’s dopamine releasing. That means we get a rush (cue James Brown). Sadly, instant gratification can be a smoke screen and hurdle keeping us from the things we want the most.
Delayed gratification is by far the most reliable road to success. Yet we have become accustomed to fast and easy. We all want the most with the least amount of effort and delayed gratification is none of that.
Let’s face it. Delayed gratification often feels like a sacrifice. Seriously, who doesn’t want to eat that ice cream, buy that bauble, sleep in later, avoid the hard work? Who wants to deny themselves? Who doesn’t want what they want when they want it?
Everyone can spot a huge romantic gesture. It has bells, whistles, applause. It is almost like a theatre show. It looks like a tux or a party dress.
Not everyone sees the small, even tiny, romantic acts and expressions that can total up to be far more important than those big gestures. It presents itself looking more like work boots and a bad hair day. Sometimes we have to train ourselves to notice these things.Continue reading →