Ready, Set, Change!

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Change is inevitable… why hold on to things that we have to let go of?” – Jhene Aiko

I was at work one day, calling on a soul mate client who wasn’t answering her phone. Her voice mail message started out in the usual way, “…we’re not home, leave a message…” what followed was not so usual. It continued, “…by the way, we’ve recently made some changes in our life, if we don’t call you back, you’re one of the changes, beeeep”. My first reaction was disbelief at what was probably one of the REALEST messages I had ever heard. But I couldn’t get it off my mind, and by the end of the day, I began to admire the woman she’d become, who was obviously at the end of her rope. She was very determined, for whatever reason, to end relationships that were affecting her life in a negative way. I felt like the soul work we were doing together was working – and it showed.

Change is never easy, especially when it requires us to dramatically alter the way we’ve become accustomed to living our lives. Leaving our comfort zone, no matter how much we dislike it, requires a combination of bravery and determination, as well as education in that area.

Many times we’re so desperate to better ourselves, we hastily make ineffective and, sometimes expensive, decisions that we feel will quickly produce the results we are looking for. Purchasing a costly gym membership and vowing to attend seven days a week while surviving on lettuce, may seem like a great idea for a few weeks (if you’re very determined,) but how long can you live like that?

If you’re serious about making a long-term change in your life, take these steps to ensure your success:

  1. Educate Yourself

Aside from determination, education is the most important key to your success. Knowing exactly what you must do to accomplish your goals will give you the power to make them a reality. Consult a professional or check out a book written by a credible authority on the subject. You can also tap the wealth of information to be found on the Internet. Friends and acquaintances can also provide insight. I have a good friend who is very organized, an area in which I am always trying to improve. Over the years I have learned a great deal from watching her manage her incredibly busy life.

  1. Set Reasonable Goals

You are not going to lose 30 pounds in two weeks. Nor are you going to undo years of financial irresponsibility in six months. After becoming educated, you will get a realistic picture of how long it will be before you should expect to see results. Having this knowledge upfront will prevent you from giving up too soon.

  1. Plan and Track

If you’re trying to accomplish something that requires long-term commitment, purchase a journal or notebook to write down your short and long-term goals. Detail how you will carry them out and when you will complete them. Check each item off as you accomplish it. Keeping a journal to record your achievements can be motivating on those days when you feel like sliding back to your old ways.

  1. Just Say No

Avoid situations that will prevent you from accomplishing your goals. This is especially important in the beginning before your new way of life comes naturally to you.

  1. Pat Yourself on the Back

Be proud of yourself for making the decision to improve your quality of life. When you reach important milestones, reward yourself in a way that is in sync with your new lifestyle. A new outfit is a great reward for losing weight, but would be considered a setback if you’re trying to cut back on spending!

Healing To Become Your Highest Version of Self

How to Find Your Real Self Again? 

On the surface it seems an odd idea that you could actually be anything other than who you really are.  But from the time we can talk, we’re being programmed to “fit in”.  We find ourselves conforming in order to please the people we love, and who love us. 

But sometimes that means that you have to suppress what you know is the real person inside. 

And yet, your relationship with yourself is the most important relationship you’ll ever have.  Without a healthy relationship with yourself, it’s practically impossible to have healthy relationships with anyone else.  

If you’re ready to get re-acquainted with someone you haven’t seen in a while – yourself – start with these 5 ideas to help you rediscover the real you.  

Quiet the noise in your head.  

You know those voices well, the ones that are constantly nagging you to pick up the dry cleaning, talk to the school teacher, juggle the bills, schedule the vet, keep the boss happy.  With all that noise going on, it will be impossible for you to hear anything above the din.  This MUST be the first step.  How do you do that?  By setting up systems, simplifying, and establishing enough extras in your life to allow you to operate from a position of abundance, instead of lack. 

Practice thinking about yourself in healthy ways. 

In order to do that, you must first believe that you are valuable, and your Real Self has something to offer the world.  Since you talk to yourself more than everyone else in your life combined --that’s a lot of talk!—it’s up to YOU to establish the healthy communication in your thinking.  Consciously listen to how you talk to yourself; write down the unhealthy things you say; challenge them; and replace them with facts. Self-Talk: “You never do anything right.”  Challenge: “Of course I do things right.  I did (example) right.  I did (example) right.  This time, I just made a mistake.  I’ll learn from it and have better success next time.”  

Listen to your heart. 

Sounds easy enough, but by the time we’re adults, most of us have stopped listening to our hearts and go only with our heads.  Those two must reconnect in order to find your real self.  It’s easy to become accustomed to thinking about your feelings instead of really feeling them.  Instead of asking yourself what you think about something, ask why it’s important.  

Be careful not to get hung-up on a specific goal. 

What you’re really after is a feeling -- respect, love, appreciation - as opposed to the company car, or a great guy/girl.  Keep an open mind to the feelings, and be willing to adjust the methods you use to achieve them.  Determine not just your goals, but how it satisfies who you really are.  The mask will come off and your real self will come shining through.  

A person you can know and love - you! - is waiting for you to take the time to listen and understand and accept.  When you accept your Real Self again, you'll make smarter choices, and those choices will stick because they actually fit who you are.  Now, that's what you're really looking for, isn't it?

Check out "Energy In Motion" from the Modern Soul Sister Album on the Bandcamp app to help heal your heart and inspire self-love.

7 Ways To Feel Happier #PersonalTransformation

Sometimes we get stuck in our own emotional dumps and forget how easy it is to feel happier, so here are seven simple ways to lift your mood. Many people have found them useful. Some of them may surprise you!

1. Go for a walk.

Most people know that going for a short daily walk is one of the best forms of exercise. When you are feeling down it is even more beneficial. If you can, go into a natural environment with plants and birds. Can you think of such a setting not? What do you notice first? The different shades of greenery, the fresh  smell of country air, the sounds of birds, or the sunlight shining through the trees? Make it real by taking a short stroll.

2. Listen to feel-good music.

Music can shift a listener's state within moments. It's effect can be nearly magical. Dig out that CD you haven't listened to in ages or tune in your favorite streaming station to something you've never listened to before. 

3. Open yourself to discovering something new.

Read something (printed, not on line) different than what you would normally watch. There are a ton of different types of magazines can you get these days. Visit your local library or browse through a magazine rack.  Pick up or buy a magazine you wouldn't normally buy. You may discover something wonderful.

4. Find something to laugh at.

Laughter is one of the best ways to lift your spirits. Find a humorous book, or watch a comedy. Even better, try to learn a few new jokes and tell them to others.  

5. Simple breathing meditation.

Breathing meditation is a great exercise that you can do anywhere.  Simply allow yourself to sit comfortably with your back straight. Now close your eyes and become aware of the flow of air into and out of your nostrils. That's all there is to it. Do this for 10-15 minutes. Notice how pleasantly surprised you can be at how you feel afterward.

6. Draw just for the fun of it.

Most people can remember when they were young and used to doodle for hours. Kids love drawing silly little pictures. Drawing is not just for kids or artists.  Whoever you are get some pens, pencils, crayons or whatever you have and just draw for the fun of it. Notice how your state of mind shifts.

7. Think of others less fortunate.

The fact that you are reading this article suggests that you are probably much better off than most people on this planet. At times this may be hard to believe, but if you can read and have access to the internet, just those two things alone means you are better off than most people in the world.  There are many human beings that barely have access to the basics of survival. There are people in lots of pain. Allow your compassion for them to grow.

These are all pretty simple. There's nothing profound or life changing, but when all you need is a quick pick me up these may be just the thing you need. 

Putting simple ideas, methods, tools and techniques into action will help you achieve change more quick and easily--surprisingly so at time-- than you imagine.