“Encouraging Thunder” award

Well, I have to say, it’s been a long time since I got an award for my blog. In fact, I really thought the days of handing them out was long gone as I haven’t seen anyone getting awards in probably the last year or so.  So, imagine my surprise when I awoke this morning to find the lovely writer, Marjma, nominated me for the Encouraging Thunder award.

encouraging thunder award

The award is used by others to encourage life, to make your own thunder and to make sure your thunder is loud enough for others to hear. It is to encourage you to get up when you fall and keep going. It’s meant to be powerful and strong. It is a symbol of your own booming voice, your own crack of lightning. your own beautiful presence in the universe.

I am not one to pick and choose who should get this award or any award, but I will share it with any of you who want to take it and display it proudly on your own blog as a symbol to all that you are proud, you are loud, and you are strong in the face of all life’s pleasures and adversities.  May your thunder roll on. 🙂

My Mantra for #NaNoWriMo … and life in general

I trust my ability to know what’s right for me without having to doubt who I am when I get things wrong. I realize that there’s always room for improvement and I commit to consistently trying to become a better person in all aspects of life. I’m not better than anybody… it’s just clear that I’m not the same as everybody…and I work within my purpose every day to make that clearer. Greatness is my choice for my life, therefore I make no excuses when I fall short; I only put forth more effort. I’m here for something bigger than me, and my only desire is to add value to everything that I can. Should I stumble, I will remember these words, I will remember who I am, and I will remember that my mission is more important than my mistakes. I will never quit. ~ anonymous

10 Resolutions for 2014

I never make New Year’s resolutions.  Deep down inside, I hate planning and conforming to rules.  I’d much rather fly by the seat of my pants.  Over the years, however, I’ve ‘re-arranged’ myself to look or act a certain way, be a certain way, but it wasn’t ‘me’.  You know what I’m talking about?  I can’t tell you how many times I refused to sing in front of others because I sound like a dying cow, or I don’t smile as much as I should because I have a dorky smile, or I fail to express my childish enthusiasm and run sporadically like Phoebe Buffay because it’s embarrassing to those around me. Well, guess what?  2014 is going to change all that.  Here is a list of 10 things I’m going to do to get back to the real ‘me’:

1.  Eat healthier and get away from this dreadful type 2 diabetes that has been plaguing me for several years.  Yep, I’m going to eat more prebiotic foods like berries, bananas, artichokes, asparagus, onions, garlic, and leafy greens.  Take in more whole foods.  Get thin again and feel good about me.

2.  Exercise more.  #1 and #2 go hand in hand.  Just gotta do it, even if it means going for brisk walks.  I don’t want to die before I’m 55.  Only I can change it.  Now I have to do it.  Who’s with me so far?

3.  Stop expecting people to Realize not everyone will like me, and that’s ok.  No more trying to ‘fit in’, or be what I perceive others want from me. I’m beautiful the way I am with all my  quirkiness and strangeness.  Some may see me as ‘unworthy’, but to others, I’m priceless.  That leaves me all gooey inside. 🙂

4.  Respect myself more than I respect them.  I’m always doing this…telling others how beautiful they are, how proud I am of them, and then turn around and tell myself I’m fat, I’m ugly.  How stupid is that?  Those words are getting a swift kick out the door.  I’m going to trust who I am, believe in my choices and feed off my inner strength.  I’m going to stop putting myself down.  Instead, I’m going to say, “I’m beautiful.  I’m strong and I’m happy in my skin.”  Come on, say it with me – “I’m beautiful.  I’m strong and I’m happy in my skin.”  Don’t you feel better already?  🙂

5.   Accept others for their uniqueness the way I want them to accept me for mine.  Theodore Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss,  once said, “Be who you are and say what you mean because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”  That’s my mantra from now on.  You love me for me, I love you for you.  It all has to do with that respect thing in #4.

6.  Understand I can’t change people (or allowing others to change me).  We are all unique with special gifts and talents.  If I can’t accept someone’s behaviors or habits, then I will need to change my relationship to it, not ask them to change for me, and vice versa.

7.  Allow myself to be happy.  Enough with the envious thoughts, the thinking I don’t do enough or if I’d only done something better.  Enough with holding my feelings hostage, pretending they don’t exist or don’t matter.  Follow my inner calling of being a writer and working with animals. Express myself.  Live.

8.  Those all too familiar words:  “Never mind.  It’s not important” that comes out of my mouth all the time?  They’re going away because if I’m feeling it, if I’m experiencing it, it’s important.  A great deal of unhappiness and confusion and feelings of betrayal comes from not saying what we feel.  I need to be brave and say what I think and what I feel.  There’s no greater sadness than holding on to words I never had the courage to speak.

9.  I will do whatever I can to not focus on the bad, but put all my thoughts into the good.  This is a difficult one for me and one that I will strive to fix.  I’ve suffered from depression my entire life.  I tried to commit suicide at the age of 18.  Yep, that’s a whole different blog post right there.  I’ve been in toxic relationships all my life and have pretty much lost who I am because of my need to fit in, be accepted, believing that acting a certain way would make someone love me more.  All it’s done is lead me to the place where I am today.  Someone I don’t even know recently directed me to a podcast by Joel Osteen’s on how we cannot be defeated.  You can listen to it here if you choose.  Anyway, it made me realize I’ve allowed myself to be defeated.  I’m the one amplifying the problems because I’ve dwelled on them and made them bigger than they need to be.  I lost my faith in God, in life, in everything around me.  This unknown angel (and a few others) brought me back to my faith, to the God I truly do believe in, and I know now He has a hand on my heart and I’m graced in His favor.  I trust in His guiding light.  I will not be defeated.

10.  Finish my dadburn novels!  They’ve been sitting here waiting, screaming at me to finish, but I have been filled with so much self-doubt, so much depression, so much hurt, I couldn’t focus.  2014 is the year.  3 novels are going down this year. I’m also going to get an agent and get my dream publisher.  I know 2014 is going to be a great year as I already have one publishing credit to announce in the next couple of months.  I’ve squandered my gifts for far too long.  It’s time to listen to my heart and my soul. What about you?

IT’s Your turn…

What does your New Year’s resolution list look like?  Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.