A random, eclectic mix of thoughts, feelings, observations, and experiences – LIFE

Posts tagged ‘lessons’

Wordless Wednesday: Positivity


Be Beautiful

As you already know, I like sharing things. Little bits of happiness. Advice. Smiles. Jokes. Today, it’s something I think we can all stand to read at least once in life. I spent some time hanging out over at Bloom Anyway today, and came across a link to THIS (and you KNOW I’m highlighting things):

Here are 36 ways to start feeling absolutely beautiful right now:

1. Smile. It lights up your face. It triggers happiness in your brain. It makes others feel happy.

2. Remember your posture. Stand up straight. Hold your head high. Throw those shoulders back. You look confident, energetic, amazing!

3. Focus on the best not the worst. Stop staring at the wrinkle or the bulge. Quit comparing yourself to Patty Perfect. Let your “worst” features recede and focus on your best instead. You have far more beautiful features than you see!

4. Be amazed at the wonder of your body. No matter your size, shape, or age, your body is a miraculous temple. Observe how wondrously it operates to house the beautiful person you are.

5. Appreciate your flaws. You are part of the Great Community of Flawed Persons. Welcome to the club. So embrace your flaws as a reminder of your connection to humanity. Flawed is the new perfect.

6. Be expressive. When you are animated and expressive, the fullness of your personality shines through. What could be more beautiful?

7. Get excited. Allow yourself to be enthusiastic and excited about life. Don’t let your concerns about appearance hold you back from embracing the beauty of living. It will reflect back on you! <<< I admit that I struggle with this. Even when I get excited, no one knows. This was actually brought up one day at work. Co-founder said, “Are you going to show this much enthusiasm with everything?” *sighs* Must. allow. self. to get. EXCITED. Legitimately.

8. Break a sweat. Get some exercise. Put on that lovely spandex and move your beautiful body. Get an endorphin high. Let your hair get sweaty and greasy. Through the sweat you are shining like star!

9. Practice beautiful movement. Try ballet, tai chi, yoga or some other movement that is fluid and allows your body to respond in beautiful new ways. <<< This is my thing for today.

10. Acknowledge your inner beauty. Get pen and paper and write down all of the beauty that you do, that you give, that you create, and that you are. You are a powerhouse of beauty.

11. Show kindness. A kind person is exquisite in their beauty. It shines from them like a beacon of hope and peace.

12. Don’t try too hard. Don’t overdo it with make-up or clothes. Don’t spend thousands getting surgery. Don’t exercise yourself to death. When you try too hard, you look desperate. It’s hard to feel beautiful when you feel desperate. <<< This is my life. Easy.

13. Don’t act your age. Your age doesn’t define you or your capacity for beauty. In fact, age ripens you and provides a lushness to your bad, beautiful self! Live the age you feel.

14. Create something. Creativity is the handmaiden of beauty. Creativity is beauty expressing itself through you. Paint, write, garden, scult, cook, sew, decorate — be creative and you will feel beauty spilling out of every pore.

15. Inspire others. As the poet Rumi writes, “Let the beauty we love be what we do.” Do beautiful things. Live beauty. Be beauty. You will inspire others through your beauty.

16. Stop your thoughts. It’s hard to feel beautiful when your brain is whirring away like a ticker tape with negative thoughts about your appearance or age. When you are trapped in those thoughts, stop yourself and redirect your thinking.

17. See yourself through the eyes of a loved one. View yourself the way those dearest to you see you. Offer yourself the love they offer you. Feel the beauty they feel around you. <<< Now THIS is a REALLY good idea! Love it.

18. Connect with the beauty of nature. You are part of the natural world in all of its infinite glory and seasonal changes. As you experience nature, become aware of your connection to the beauty around you.

19. Listen to beautiful music. Certain music speaks to your soul. It touches and enlivens the most spiritual and beautiful parts of ourselves. Listen to Brandenburg Concertos #5 by Bach to feel your beauty come alive.

20. Make love. No explanation needed. <<< !!!!!!!

21. Wear clothes well. If you aren’t a natural at dressing to suit your body type, age, and coloring, find someone to help you find clothing highlight the beauty inside of you.

22. Hug often. Share loving physical touch with friends and family. It’s a beautiful thing!

23. Get enough sleep. You know what lack of sleep does to your appearance, not to mention your mental health. A good night’s sleep is a mini facelift!

24. Dance. Dance alone. Dance with a partner. Dance like no one is watching. Dancing makes you feel like a beautiful child, carefree and happy.

25. Update your make-up. Make sure your make-up doesn’t look dated, too heavy, or just wrong. Sometimes we get stuck in make-up ruts. An new look can highlight your most beautiful features.

26. Have a beautiful mind. Don’t corrupt your mind with ugly thoughts about yourself or others. Don’t dwell on unpleasant things. Don’t watch violence or negative programs or movies. Fill your thoughts with loveliness. <<< Good call!

27. Stop smoking. It ages your skin, it smells bad, it’s bad for you, and it doesn’t reflect self-love. Dropping this bad habit will instantly make you feel more beautiful.

28. Be outgoing, even if it’s hard. Initiate conversations. Show interest in people. Make introductions. Smile. Bridging the gap between stranger and friend feels beautiful.

29. Do physical work. If you have a desk job, sometimes you miss the beauty of a task completed with the physical evidence of your accomplishment. Do something physical like washing the car, raking leaves, gardening, etc. to see the fruits of your labor. Moving, working, accomplishing — that feels beautiful!

30. Take care of your teeth. Since you are now smiling often, you want your teeth to look their pearly best. White, clean teeth make you look ten years younger. Plus, it’s hard to smile if you are embarrassed about your teeth.

31. Create beauty around you. Let your surroundings reflect the beauty inside of you. Remove clutter. Clean windows. Add flowers. Let your home be filled with your beauty. <<< SUPER important in my life. I neeeed things clean. And neat. And clutter-free. Otherwise, I’m confused, unable to think clearly, unhappy… Not good. GOTTA keep the surroundings as I keep myself.

32. Cook a beautiful meal. Well-prepared, healthy, and delicious food prepared by loving hands is beauty for the mouth and the soul.

33. Reduce stress. Anxiety, a furrowed brow, a tense frown, hunched shoulders are all the physical manifestations of stress. Find the cause of your stress and do something to relieve it. Shine the light of your beauty on the situation. It might dissolve.

34. Exude self-confidence. Show the world that you know you are beautiful where it counts. Your self-confidence rises in direct proportion to your self-acceptance. Love the unique and beautiful person you are and share that with the world.

35. Dress up. Life has gotten increasingly casual. Dress up on occasion. In fact, be the best dressed person in the room. Wear red! Turn a few heads.

36. Express gratitude. Be grateful for everything you are and everything you have. The handful of complaints you have about your appearance is nothing compared to the cornucopia of blessings that surround you. Bathe in the beauty of your blessings, and it will transform you from the inside out.


Sweet list, right? What would you like to add to it? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

50 Lessons Life Taught Me

You already know I love this stuff. Nice quotes, little bits of inspiration, things to think about, ways to grow, food for though. I love it. And I’m not selfish enough to keep it to myself when I come across it. Gotta share! As usual, I’ve highlighted my faves.

50 Lessons Life Taught Me

By Regina Brett

To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me.

 It is the most-requested column I’ve ever written. When my odometer rolled over to 50, I updated the list.

Here it is:


Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.

  2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
  3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
  4. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
  5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
  6. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

  7. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone.
  8. It’s OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

 <<< Ummm… I’m don’t agree with this one.
  9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
  10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
  11. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present.

  12. It’s OK to let your children see you cry.
  13. Don’t compare your life to others’. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
  14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
  15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don’t worry; God never blinks.
  16. Life is too short for long pity parties. Get busy living, or get busy dying.
  17. You can get through anything if you stay put in today.
  18. A writer writes. If you want to be a writer, write.
  19. It’s never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.

  20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer.
  21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
  22. Overprepare, then go with the flow.

  23. Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.
  24. The most important sex organ is the brain.
  25. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
  26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: “In five years, will this matter?”

  27. Always choose life.

  28. Forgive everyone everything.

  29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

  30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.
  31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
  32. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.
  33. Believe in miracles.
  34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn’t do.
  35. Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger.
  36. Growing old beats the alternative – dying young.
  37. Your children get only one childhood. Make it memorable.
  38. Read the Psalms. They cover every human emotion. <<< And Proverbs.
  39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

  40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.
  41. Don’t audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
  42. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.
  43. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
  44. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
  45. The best is yet to come.
  46. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

  47. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

  48. If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
  49. Yield.
  50. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift…

Regina Brett is the author of God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life’s Little Detours. Her book is an inspirational collection of essays and stories about the lessons life taught her along the detours of life. 
She was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist twice, in 2009 and 2008 for columns she wrote for The Plain Dealer, Ohio’s largest newspaper. Learn more at www.reginabrett.com

50 Lessons Life Taught Me | Maria Shriver – StumbleUpon.

Anything you’d add to this list?

On Giving Up

Day 26 – Have you ever thought about giving up on life? If so, when and why? 

There have been times when I’ve felt very tired. Exhausted. Completely depleted of all will to continue in the struggle that life seemed to be. I’ve never allowed myself to get to the point where I truly threw in the towel. I’ve had times when I’ve decided to let go out of certain things. Certain people. I let some dreams fly in the wind. Some for a short time, some for a longer period of time, some for good. I’ve realized that everything won’t be rainbows, butterflies, and chicken wings all the time. There are highs and lows. There are great days and not so great days. If it weren’t for the tears, we wouldn’t know the value of the smiles and giggles.

What used to happen to me was a severe overload. Then, there would be a big breakdown. a build-up of everything I refused to share with anyone or deal with at all. I just internalized everything for months and months. Of course, I would come to the point where my cup overflowed. How did I get to that point? Well, like I said, I would pretend like everything was fine. I wouldn’t let anyone in. No one would ever know what was going on with me. I still tend to just get very quiet during more difficult times. It’s hard, even for people who know me well, to know when I’m feeling down because I’m so quiet in general. Mind you, I talk a LOT, but when I FEEL like it. It comes in waves. Hahaha.

These days, I allow myself to feel a little down. I give myself a few minutes to just mope. Be sad. Cry if I have to. Vent if I need to. Blog if I want to. After the allotted time is up, that’s it. No more moping. I move on. Either come up with a solution to the problem, or realize that it must not break me. Then I play a happy song and/or dance, or go for a bike ride, or have a nice, long, hot shower, or eat ice cream, or a combination of things. Sometimes, before that happens, I play a song to help me feel whatever I’m feeling (or trying not to feel). Most times, I end up playing Sade’s King of Sorrow.

A nice gospel song for the down times is this one.

And then this song makes me feel better.

While we’re on this, here’s a new song from Kirk Franklin.

I just don’t understand the pink lipstick. I mean, wear lipstick if you want, Kirk. Whatever. I just think you should try to pick a better colour/shade for your skin tone. That bubblegum pink is just… Wrong.


  • It’s okay to feel down sometimes. It happens.
  • It’s not okay to internalize everything. Yes, some things are private. There are some things we’d rather not share with the world, or people outside of the situation. It’s just important that we express the way that we feel in a harmless way. Talking to someone, writing, painting, physical activity, etc.
  • Music is good. It can make you feel all kinds of ways. It can help you cry. It can make you smile. It can help you to heal.
  • Never allow yourself to wallow in sorrows for a longer time than you’d allow your mother, father, sister, brother, cousin, best friend, husband, wife, girlfriend, or brother to wallow in sorrows.
  • Allow yourself to FEEL. It’s in the nature of human beings, and it is okay.
  • Know yourself. Completely. Be able to make a distinction between a rough day, a rough little while, and depression. Know when you need to reach out to someone for help.

Reason For Everything

Day 22: Something you wish you hadn’t done in your life.

[After sitting here, staring blankly at the screen, then doing other things for 40 minutes…]

I’m coming up sort of blank. I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago that I really believe that life is a series of linked events. For one thing to happen, the thing before it had to have happened. One little change could alter major things. Ok, yes, some things are probably inconsequential, but if there’s something I’d undo, it’s probably big enough to change the course of my life. There are definitely things that I did that I may not have done if I’d thought about them a little more or a little less. There are things I did because I (felt that I) had to. There are things that I did for the wrong reasons, or with the wrong motivation or driving force. Would I really change any of it? Probably not.

I moved back to Nassau, from Halifax. Blech. Bad move, bad move, bad move. I really don’t like it here. Sure, there are things I like about being here, but I dislike some of the same things. I’m glad I’m close enough to family to drop by and visit them, call them for free, etc. That works against me sometimes. I liked the distance that was between us a lot of the time (for varying reasons). My reasons for moving, I have to stand by. I felt that some relatives were getting older, and the time I could spend with them was only reducing. My great-grandmother is 91 years old. My maternal grandmother is 85. My paternal grandmother is about 74, as is my grandaunt. My paternal grandfather died about two years before. My great-grandmother was planning to close her business – one that I grew up in. I spent a lot of time in “the shop” (a ladies’ boutique) from I was a baby until I left for school. Saturdays, school breaks… I spent a lot of them at the shop. I didn’t want it to just disappear. I didn’t want to visit Nassau, to meet a huge parking lot where the business used to be. All of these things prompted me to move back. Then my mother got very ill. It just made sense to be here. It was supposed to be temporary. VERY temporary. It’s still temporary, but was supposed to be WAY more temporary. Hahaha. Moving back is something I wish I didn’t do, but I’m glad I did.

There are other things too… Wasting time at the local college (UGH!), crazy relationship with an idiot, being in a pointless relationship I really didn’t want to be in for pity’s sake…

All lesson learned, really. Did I have to learn them all through those experiences? Maybe not. But I did. And that’s okay.

Do you have regrets? Did you learn lessons or find the greater purpose for certain things you did that you may like to undo? Do you think life is like Jenga? Can you move certain blocks without the whole tower falling down? Are there pivotal pieces that just can’t be moved and leave the tower standing strong?

Completely off topic: Is anyone else having trouble with WordPress? My “Blogs I Follow” and “WordPress Reader” are coming up empty, and I have no idea why. This has been happening from yesterday. I feel like I’m so far behind in blog world. Is this happening to you? If not, do you know how to remedy it? If I lost everything, how do I get my fave blogs back without remembering them all?

The Holstee Manifesto

Sometimes, we just need to be enlightened. And then reminded.

How To Live

Desiderata, written by Max Ehrmann

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others,
even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia