Getting It Together

Getting It Together

Recently many people have told me they are working on getting it together.

It’s a funny phrase. What are they getting together? And once ‘it’ is together what are they going to do with ‘it’?

I am assuming–because I haven’t really asked anyone–that by it they mean their lives.

I assume this because a few have told me I have ‘it’ together. I didn’t think they were talking about my hair.

Apparently many people seem to be working on getting their lives together because they feel they don’t have it together.

These are my thoughts on that:

  • No one really has it together because life is ever changing.
  • Just when you think everything is perfect and right, life will throw you a curveball.
  • If you had everything in life together and you had no changes, you would be bored.
  • It’s really about your attitude towards life and not your aptitude to get life together.
  • Gratitude towards what is going right is better than worrying about what could go wrong.

So relax, enjoy all the parts of your together and not so together life.

When we are gone no one is going to remember us for how well we had it together but for how much we enjoyed life and those around us!

Time Management

Time Management

Time management is one of the hardest skills to develop.

But it is a skill that if mastered will help you accomplish more of the goals you are aiming for.

Many times we have challenges in managing our time because we underestimate the time a project or task will take and because we allow other things to distract and interrupt us.

Here are a few tips that help me manage my time and make the most of every day.

  1. Prioritize your tasks. Making a list of the many things to do will not help you if you don’t indicate in some way which tasks are the most important to complete. Make your list and number it.
  2. Remove distractions. Turn off your phone or the television and complete tasks in an environment conducive to the task at hand.
  3. Complete all important tasks first. Concentrating on one important task at a time and working on it until it is finished before moving on to the next will help you stay focused.
  4. Give yourself the appropriate amount of time for each task. Underestimating the amount of time a task will take and not giving yourself the appropriate amount of time can be self defeating.

Set yourself up for success when managing your time and you will find your tasks and goals will be easier to achieve!

How To Master 2019

How To Master 2019

Happy New Year! This will not be a post about New Years Resolutions.

If you made some resolutions, great! If you didn’t, it’s ok because you can resolve to do anything you want any day of the year–it’s all good.

I met all my resolutions last year but only because I was ready to make the changes I did. And that is the key.

You have to want it. And you have to set your intentions every day towards your goals.

So here is how to master 2019:

  1. Know exactly what you want. If you don’t know what that is–that is not confusion about your life, that is fear. You know what you want…it’s right inside of you.
  1. Confront the fear. If you are afraid to fail or to let someone down you need to get over it. If you don’t confront what is holding you back you cannot move forward.
  1. Set your intention every day. Intend, in writing and out loud, what you are going to do today to get you one step closer to your goal. This is a marathon not a sprint.

That’s it. It really is easy to take these steps. Keep it simple.

That does not mean that everyday will be easy, but it does mean that whatever life throws at you this year-you will keep moving forward.

The new year gives us new opportunities and a mental fresh start–make the most of it! And make 2019 your year–master it!

Writing a Mission Statement

Writing a Mission Statement

Last week, as I was going through a few papers on my desk, I found a personal mission statement I had written some time ago.

The idea behind writing a mission statement is to have a written record of the values that are the driving force for your life.   You can have a personal mission statement for your life or a family mission statement for your family.

I learned to do this back in college–as an assignment in an English course. Over the last 30 or so years I have had a mission statement and I have rewritten my mission statement as life changes have dictated a new direction. Each time, it has helped me zero in on those things in life that are most important and that help shape some of my major decisions.

It is fairly easy to write a personal mission statement–you just have to keep a few things in mind and you have to be honest with yourself.

Here is how to do it:

  1.  Ask yourself what is important to you.  That means you have to really define what values you think are the most important and that reflect who you are and you have to know who the people that are most important to your life are.
  2. Identify how you want to make a difference in the world–to your family, your community, through work, volunteerism or through spiritual endeavors.
  3. Make a list of personal goals, your talents and your weaknesses.
  4. Take all these ideas and sit down and write your statement.

An example of how to take your information and write a personal statement would be to fill out the following sentence stems:

The core values that are important to me are _________________, ___________________ and ___________________.  These values are especially important in my relationships with _____________________________________________________________________________________.

At the end of my life, I hope I have accomplished ____________________________, by using my talents/gifts of ____________________________.   Additional goals I would like to reach are ___________________________________ and I hope to reach those by ___________________________ in my _____(career, volunteer work, etc)____________________________.

Let your ideas flow.  There are no right or wrong answers or ideas–and remember a personal mission statement is personal. No one else ever has to see it.  But if you set it aside for a while and come back to it I think you will find it quite interesting, if you are honest with yourself, how your life truly falls into a pattern that follows the core values you identified and that leave a legacy for those that are important to you.

Also, a mission statement does not have to be set in stone. You can rewrite it or modify it in anyway that you feel is most advantageous to you.

I have always found it to be a good exercise to come back to, especially during life’s challenging moments–that we all encounter.  It is a good navigating tool for our goals and the paths we want to travel to reach them.

Spend a little time this weekend and write a personal mission statement for yourself and then pat yourself on the back for knowing what is important to you–that is the first step to building the life you want successfully!

So Many Books, So Little Time

So Many Books, So Little Time

I love books. No, that’s an understatement. Books for me have been a lifelong addiction.

I read everything–histories, romance, detective, classics, biographies–and I cannot catch up on all the things I want to read.

I have lists of books I’ve read, and books I want to read.  It’s quite the dirty little secret.

While I have never (ever!) stood in line late at night or in the early wee hours for concert tickets to any band or singer, I confess that I have stood in line–at midnight–at the local Barnes & Noble to purchase the next installment in the Harry Potter series.

Sometimes I feel frustrated that I don’t have enough time to read all that I want to read and I get very invested in certain authors or series of books.

As the technology evolved and ebooks made their debut I was vehemently against them. I thought reading would not be as enjoyable as holding a book and turning the pages myself.

Then I received my first  Kindle as a gift. I learned how to connect it to Amazon books and my local library.  I downloaded the Kindle App on my phone and the obsession continued.

Having a whole library in my pocket gives me access to my books whenever I have downtime–in line at the grocery store, waiting for my oil change, or on my coffee break.

But here is an idea to get more reading time in, if you have the reading addiction like I do:

  1. Get a library card
  2. Download the Overdrive App on your mobile phone.  This will give you access to audiobooks for free.
  3. Electronically check out the books you would like to listen to–and you can listen to books during times that you must spend your time attending to something else.

I listen to my books in the car as I drive to work and back, to run errands, or on weekend trips to other cities.

I listen to my books while I cook and meal prep and do my laundry and while I am on exercise machines or walking in my neighborhood.

This is not the same as reading the written word and turning pages, swiping left or scrolling up, but it is fascinating to listen to books read to you as your brain conjures the pictures in your mind–and it allows you to get a few more books in….

So many books, so little time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Circle

Your Circle

Your circle of friends should want to see you win.

Your circle of friends should not be joyful when you are struggling.

Your circle should be quietly supporting and not critical of your life decisions.

Your circle should not spend their time trying to change you to be more like them.

Your circle of friends should recognize that you are unique and that in reality they are better for knowing you.

Those that are part of your circle should be helping build you up and not constantly breaking you down.

Who is in your circle?

Your circle belongs to you. You don’t have to let everyone in–you don’t have to let ANYONE in–that does not fit in with your goals, your lifestyle, your values and your priorities.

Life is challenging enough without having to surround ourselves with people who are not going in the same direction.

Others will define you based on who you surround yourself with.

And it is never too late to create your circle, modify your circle or remove yourself from a circle that is not aligned to your true self.

For those that don’t belong in your circle, that use their energy to being you down, or that only want to use you, wish them well and let them go.

No hard feelings are necessary, they just don’t belong with you.

Create your circle with people that will encourage you to be your best as you encourage them to be their best–those are the people that belong in your circle.

Old School

Old School

The older I get the  more and more I realize that it is not just because of my age that makes me the person I am but my old school attitude.

This is also what is missing from young people today–they are NOT old school.

More and more or I should say less and less there is no one to teach the next generation how to BE old school.

What makes me old school? I think there are 10 traits that seal the deal on being truly old school–here they are:

  1. If you say you are going to do something, do it.
  2. Do everything with integrity.
  3. Always be early to where ever you need to be.
  4. Respect your elders.
  5. Say please, excuse me and thank you.
  6. If someone is paying you to do a job, don’t do your best do the best they are expecting of you.
  7. Adversity occurs to make us stronger, better, smarter.
  8. Honor your God and respect the God of others.
  9. Hard work always pays off.
  10. Always save some money for a rainy day.

So if you want to be old school or you want the next generation to be old school you have to teach them and lead by example.

I’m proud to be old school, and to be surrounded by old school people. Old school is what has been the fabric of our productive society–don’t let anyone take those ideas and values away from you!