Category Archives: Inspiration

Slipper to Shoes

 

Watercolor background

Many of us want to be more than just a parent, spouse, friend or family member. We all have dreams that we would like to see come true someday. The question is: what are you doing to make them happen?

When I was a little girl I dreamed of being a ballet dancer. I took dance classes and my favorite out of all of the classes was ballet. I would watch the older girls in their toe shoes and dream of being just like them. When it came time to advance from the ballet slipper to toe shoes I was told that this is hard work, that you will have to practice as much as you can or the shoes would be to hard for you to dance in.

I took that information to heart and when I got my first pair of toe shoes I was in those shoes as soon as I got home from school every day. I did not walk on my feet I walked on my toes. My mom had to insist that I stop wearing them at times when we were heading to school, church or to visit family. I worked hard to break in my shoes, to be able to walk on my toes as if that was how I was taught to walk. That year I had made it so that I could dance with the ‘big’ girls in class wearing those wonderful ballet shoes. I was only ten years old at that time.

That dream was crushed soon after for me. Not because of anything I had done but because of the financial situation in my life with my parents. They couldn’t afford to pay for my classes anymore and even though my dance teachers begged my mother to do things for them in trade for my tuition it never happened. I remember them telling her that I was the youngest student they had ever had that was really good on my ballet shoes and that I had great potential to be something if she could just keep me in the classes.

I have to say I was crushed. I didn’t want to believe it so I kept walking around in my toe shoes for many months after that. I even got a Ballerina Barbie doll for Christmas the prior year and the only two things I ever had with me were those toe shoes and that doll. Family life wasn’t all it was cracked up to be in our house and eventually anger took hold and my ballet shoes and dance outfits were tossed out so that I would face the truth, then it was my doll that went. Parents mean well sometimes but they didn’t realize how they crushed my dream on those specific events in my childhood.

I turned into a child that was shy, quiet, did what I was told but didn’t ask for anything, didn’t dream of doing anything. When my parents divorced my mom got me a clarinet and put me in band classes at school. The music helped and I was good at that too but eventually I was reminded that it’s only a dream and wanting to play music for life wasn’t going to happen, just like being a ballet dancer.

When I grew up I realized that those that love you the most sometimes can’t handle the fact that you are chasing a dream and making it come true. They feel they should be chasing there own and when they aren’t and you remind them of what they would rather be doing they sabotage even those they love to keep from acknowledging the pain that comes with not chasing your dream.

So I ask again, what are you doing to make your dreams happen? Are you learning all you can about the subject in question? Are you surrounding yourself with others that are positive and go-getters, doers and dreamers? Are you taking steps even if small ones towards that goal around your life? We all have responsibilities and we have to have shelter, clothing and food for our family, and ourselves but what do you do on those off times? Do you sink into the couch watching TV and wishing for a different life? Do you pick up a book and read to get lost in those characters because your life isn’t going where you want? Or do you say I have far too much to do and am far to busy raising my children and keeping them going in all their activities? Are you using excuses like I fail at things when I try them so what’s the point?

No matter what your dreams are also important. Your dreams keep you going and alive in the grind of life. Those dreams give you a sense of accomplishment, confidence and pride in the ability to chase a dream, be an example to your family and know that anything is possible if you work hard and go after it. Do you watch a toddler go from crawling to walking without falling down? What dream are you chasing today and if you haven’t started then why? There is no better time than now. What are you waiting for?

I hope you enjoyed this blog post. Please share it with someone that you think it would help or touch. I’d like to hear what dreams you are chasing so leave a comment below. Have a blessed week!

The Time is Now

the_time_is_now_by_textuts-d5i01b6

Do you have dreams you wish to achieve? Then the time is now to start working to get them. Time seems to move by so much faster now than I remember it doing when I was a child. I use to think school was going to take forever until summer break. Now, I’m trying to hold on to each day because it’s moving by so quickly.

We all have the same number of hours in a day, so what is holding you back from achieving those dreams you talk about or think about? If you work a job and come home each evening to prepare dinner and spend time with your family, what do you do with the few hours before you go to bed once the kids are put to bed? Do you watch the latest television show and just relax each evening?

What about your dream? Do you do anything towards it in the evenings? How about weekends? There is always an hour here or an hour there that you can eliminate one activity that doesn’t help you achieve your dreams for those that can. If you want to be a writer then start reading books about how to write if you aren’t sure where to start. If you want to learn to paint then take a class to learn some basics at the local college or from a local art teacher on weekends. If you want to take photographs then get out the manual to your camera and start learning what all the various knobs on the camera do and how they work together to create specific images. If you want to be a chef then practice some dishes on your family and have a little get together and see how they like them.

The only thing that is really stopping you is you. The time is the same for everyone and how you use it determines what you end up achieving in this life. Yes, things come up and you might have to skip that hour that one time but usually when something comes up its important like a sick child, a family vacation, overtime at work or even an illness you have to focus on. You can still do your dreams around the challenges.

You should start now while you can, because the next time you blink it may be five years later and you are wishing you had started because even if you did just a little bit towards that goal or dream you would have come far in five years. Let’s use weight loss as an example, you want to lose 100 pounds and it just seems so daunting of a goal, but if you focus on one to two pounds a week then that seems doable. If you don’t lose one or two pounds a week do you stop? No, of course not because even if you only lost two pounds a month it’s still 24 pounds in a year and 96 pounds in four years.

Writing a book can be the same way. You take the time to read how to get started and what you need to focus on and do. Then you sit down and take building a character as an example and doing a character sheet for the main character of a book idea that you have. Maybe next time you sit down you do another character perhaps the bad guy. Then the next time you sit down you might figure out what type of scene you want to start the book with or time period and do the research you need. Each time you sit down to work on it you get a little further and a little further. It might take you a couple years to complete the first book, but I assure you the second one won’t take nearly as long because now you know the process and you can utilize that time you have set aside better to achieve the next book.

So what is holding you back from achieving your dreams? The time is now to get started and make them a reality. You can do it!

If this post inspired you or you think would help someone else please share it or leave a comment below on how you are making the time you have now help you achieve your dreams. Have a blessed week!

Let it Rain

Rainy weather

Monsoon season is upon us here in the desert so let it rain it’s only temporary. It seems the last week it has decided to grace us with these thunderstorms at night and when it does the next day is just a little bit cooler, the sky bluer, the dust settled, the smog gone and that is refreshing. When temperatures hit 110 or higher here in the desert you just want to turn the AC as cold as possible and hide out from the sun and heat.

My life at times feels like monsoon season with so many challenges hitting me all at once. The thunderstorms and lightning shows from the drama in the family, the health issues in the family, job issues, financial issues, goals not being met, dreams not coming true can be overwhelming. I’ve learned that if I’m doing all the right things in my life, working towards my goals daily, taking time for my family, doing the best I can with my job, juggling the finances to stay within what we make, and the challenges keep piling up then I’m under attack because I am focused on the right things.

Some people make changes in there lives and when things start to get tough or more challenges are dumped upon them they give up and go back to what they were doing, which was nothing exciting to make it all stop so they can function each day with little or not challenges. What kind of life is that? I don’t care of you are broke or rich we all have challenges. Just how we can take care of them varies based on our faith and finances.

I say ‘Let it Rain’ in my life because it’s only temporary. I know there are good things that can happen to steer our journey a new direction when it rains. You can’t see it now but on the other side of it all you can and you are thankful you were able to get through it too. I look forward to seeing bluer skies, the dust settling and all that smog gone after each thunderstorm in my life.

As a mentor of mine says, “It’s only temporary”. As you face these challenges just tell yourself it’s only temporary and I can get through anything that’s temporary. That illness that has hit someone you love is only temporary, that challenge at your job that is making you work so many extra hours so you can’t see your family, it’s temporary. Those finances that seem to be larger than what you bring in right now it’s just temporary.

We can all face something temporary because we know it will go away soon enough or change. Let it Rain – it’s only temporary.

If the words to this blog have helped you in some way or would help someone else please share it or leave a comment below. Tell me about a situation in your life that you felt was overwhelming but was only temporary.

Six Months

The months passing by this year rather quickly.

The months passing by this year rather quickly.

Can you believe it, it’s already been six months in 2015. Time sure is passing by quickly and seems to do so even more as you get older. This is a good time of year to look at the previous six months and analyze if you have made progress towards your goals and dreams. If not, why? What can you do differently so the next six months will move your forward with them?

Do you need to work on scheduling your time better? Do you need to say ‘no’ to people that want all your free time for other things? Do you need to learn something before you can move forward? Do you need to purchase something first? Do you need help with motivation or encouragement? Do you need to make smaller changes to reach your dreams?

Every one of those questions can be changed or dealt with so that you will move towards your goals and dreams instead of staying the same or going backwards. Making changes in your life so that you can move forward can be small changes. Some small changes could be setting up a family night or date night on your calendar each week so your family doesn’t think you are working all the time and ignoring them.

We all want to help others but sometimes we have to say ‘no’ in order to not put our own dreams and passions on the back burner. Volunteering for every little thing at church may not be the best solution for you. Taking on projects for your family may need to be spaced out and scheduled differently. Just remember you are the one in charge of your time.

Some things take more time than you want them too in order to be done right. Writing a book for example might only take you a month to write but then you have to edit the book and do some rewrites in order to polish it up so that it’s a great read. Artwork can take time as you plan out the piece you wish to do, do the sketch of the idea, work out the details, color palette you wish to use, then doing the work of the painting itself.

Evaluate your goals and see what you need to change in order to move them forward in the next six months of this year. Don’t get discouraged as you move forward. It’s like losing weight, when we start we have such a large goal and then we break that goal down into smaller sections in order to meet the goal. Even if you had a setback with losing weight you don’t just stop because you didn’t reach your goal, you adjust and keep going. Losing 20 pounds in a year is better than nothing if you were trying to lose 50 pounds. Now you only have to lose 30 and you can break that down into smaller amounts so that it doesn’t seem so overwhelming.

Stay motivated, schedule your goals, focus on the small steps and the next six months will fly by and you will have accomplished more than you think. Have a blessed week.

Be sure to share this post or comment below on ways you stay on track to meeting your goals.

Imagine the Unimaginable

"Imagine Sign" in New York Central Park, John Lennon Memorial

“Imagine Sign” in New York Central Park, John Lennon Memorial

There are times when I sit and imagine things I wish to have happen in my life and sometimes those things seem so unimaginable or out of reach that I wonder why I want such big things. We are all able to dream and have vivid imaginations. Some of us use them for creating things others can enjoy or to help them and some of us use them to manipulate situations in our favor.

What do I mean by that? Well, there are always people in your life that live in what I call ‘excuse or victim land’. They spend there time dreaming up excuses as to why they can’t do something, have something or accomplish something. They have great imaginations and can conquer up all types of excuses. All that talent of creating excuses is going to waste. The same way you can create an excuse you can create a way to make it happen.

Here are some ways to realize you are preventing your own dreams from coming true or that you are using your dreams or imagination to manipulate others so you don’t have to pursue those dreams.

  • How often do you use the word “I”; I need, I want, I must have, I can’t do it, I don’t know how, I want you to…
  • Do you use the words “I’m to…”, I’m to old, I’m to sick, I’m to short, I’m to tall, I’m to lonely, I’m to busy…?
  • Do you use phrases like, “Someday I will, I probably should but, What if…?
  • Do you talk yourself out of things? I couldn’t possibly do that because, I’m sure if that was meant for me, I’m getting old and this is to much for me?

I can tell you from experience that it is easy to live in the excuse or victim land over stepping past the fear and objections and just start doing. Bad things can happen to anyone and if you play victim it’s a choice you made. If you keep making excuses as to why your dreams cannot be reached it’s also your choice. Some bad things take a bit to overcome, but know it’s still your choice if you don’t even try.

We as humans are not meant to hit some magical age and stop doing things we love to do. We aren’t meant to sit and stare at a TV watching other people make dreams happen and then say it’s to late for me now. We are also not meant to make others feel guilty for accomplishing their dreams when we gave up on our own.

Our imaginations can run away with us and can come up with some pretty awesome and unimaginable things we want to accomplish in our life. Tell fear to get out of the way and start working towards those dreams or goals. Those excuses you come up with are just fear talking and trying to keep you from doing what you truly wish in your life. So, why not, what do you have to lose? Step out in faith that your dream is possible and see what an amazing life you can create by going after it.

I hope you have a blessed week and will share this with anyone you feel could use it. Leave a comment below if you have overcome a fear or excuse and are working towards your unimaginable dream.

Head in the Clouds

Head in the Clouds

Head in the Clouds

Do you remember as a child laying in the grass and staring up at the clouds, watching them move and trying to make shapes out of them? I did that a lot as a kid because I knew there was something magical about those fluffy white cotton balls in the sky. As you get older though you will hear the turn ‘get your head out of the clouds and pay attention’ by teachers, relatives, parents, friends when they are talking to you about something they feel is important.

When you were looking up at the clouds, everything was possible to you. There wasn’t anything you couldn’t do. Your dreams would be huge and it didn’t matter if there were things that realistically or logically got in the way of making them come true. Those moments of just dreaming, creating, making anything happen we should do as adults too.

As an adult I know that real life issues got in the way of those lofty dreams I had laying in the grass and looking up at those clouds. Now at this point in my life I’m asking myself why didn’t I still go after them? Once you get past all the junk that you have been through from manipulative, negative parents and family to jealous friends that attempt sabotage every time you started to become successful at your dreams it begins to seem possible again.

It’s time to journal out those negative feelings, the guilt pounded down on you, the thoughts of you don’t deserve it, you aren’t worthy enough, your not smart enough, the calculated manipulations others played on you or whatever else that is rolling around in your head causing you to not pursue the things you really want in your life.

I know in my own life I had to write letters to those that really pushed me down spilling out all that has hurt me and caused me to feel negatively toward them for doing such things and then I took those letters and burned them. I released myself from feeling the way that I had been so that I could move forward with what I wanted to become. I had to forgive them for how they treated me not for their benefit but for my heart and mine so I could move past these events and begin to soar with the clouds once more.

It’s okay to have your head in the clouds and to believe in anything you dream up. It’s possible and it only takes the willingness to step forward and start doing the things needed to make that dream come alive and be possible. I hope you will take the time to let your mind float into the clouds and open up to the possibilities that are before you. You just have to reach for them. Why reach for the eagle in the sky when you can reach for the stars themselves? Dream big, believe, start doing and you will see anything is within your grasp.

If you feel this blog post has helped you in some way or would encourage someone else please share it. Feel free to leave a comment below if you are inspired to reach for a big dream and let me know what it is.

Have a blessed day!

A Second Opinion

Take off your blinders and get a Second Opinion!

Take off your blinders and get a Second Opinion!

They tell you when you get diagnosed with a serious illness to go have a second opinion to confirm the diagnosis or treatment for that illness. I have found the same is true when you are struggling with life, goals, dreams, the future, the past, the present and anything else that you are stressed about with your life. That second opinion is usually a close friend, a relative or even a counselor or pastor. These opinions can also come from mentors or someone you consider a confidant.

We all make BIG decisions in our lives, what career, what home, the size of our family, health issues, and helping our parents that are elderly. Then there are the deeper passions in our lives; what is my purpose, how do I reach my goals, why does it feel like all I do is struggle without success? We all feel these questions at various times in our lives. Even with a plan sometimes things change so drastically that you aren’t sure of your real dreams any longer.

Recently, a mentorship program I am part of asked a question that I found very profound and life changing, here it is; what would you do if you won the lottery and all your financial matters were taken care of? Would you travel? Would you take photographs? Would you paint? Would you become a chef? Would you write? Would you film movies? What is the one thing you wish to do in your life if money wasn’t an issue?

For me that is writing and taking photographs. These are deep passions that I have put on the back burner telling myself I would get to it eventually when things slow down. I’d like to ask you, when does life slow down? It’s not happened for me, so I was beginning to feel that these deeper passions weren’t meant for me to accomplish. This is when that second opinion came in handy for me. It was a way to give yourself permission to be yourself and do what you really want to do.

At times I am also the close friend that gets to listen to someone else’s dreams, problems, excuses, or whatever it is at that time. I get to give advice based on what they are telling me through fresh eyes, a different viewpoint. It’s enough to allow the other person to think and refresh there own thinking and drives for their life. Don’t hesitate to ask someone for there opinion. Sometimes you are living life with blinders on. You only see what is immediately in front of you and thinking outside of the box doesn’t happen for you.

You need to take your current schedule and find a small amount of time here and there to start working towards those passions you have. You might need to give up TV shows, meeting with friends each week to just hang out, or you get convinced to do some project or participate in some event that really isn’t something you want to do because your dreams are real and worth fighting for, just for you.

We go in early and stay late for our jobs to earn the money we need to live, why not wake up early or stay up late for just an hour a couple times a week so you can work on your own dreams? When are you going to tell others ‘No’ and start saying ‘Yes’ to yourself?

Start thinking about what you truly want. What would you do if money no longer worried you? Sit down and look at your weekly schedule, how can you put in some time for your own true passions? All it takes is one step forward each day. That step can be as little as 30 minutes a day it’s still moving forward. Give it a try and see where you are in six months.

Leave a comment if you have found your passions and have begun to spend time towards them even if they are baby steps. Share this with someone else that you think is struggling with the same issues. Have a blessed day!

Changes for the Better

Change - Positive & Negative

Change – Positive & Negative

As we live our lives sometimes we get into a rut and then something major happens and you begin making changes for the better, but at the time they are happening you are wondering is this the right choice for my life. We really have no way of knowing for sure except by how we feel we are being led to go, or as some say your gut instinct kicks in. A major change is happening in my life as we are moving from a home we have lived in for 17 years to some place new this week.

At first, moving was not something I looked forward to doing because there is all that packing, sorting, tossing, hook ups and turn offs, moving mail, updating accounts with a new address, changing business information and more. Now, I’m just excited for the change, the new place, the new area, the new flow or routine, new neighbors and friends and the possibilities that will develop.

I admit I was someone that after moving sometimes every six months as a child I just didn’t want to move very often as an adult. I wanted to plant myself some place and build memories, but honestly the memories go with you. As you clean out the closets, cabinets, drawers you locate things that make you laugh and things that can make you cry that were past memories. Glancing over those items I realized they are the things that made me who I am today.

You could say I didn’t want to move because I was afraid of change. We all are afraid of things, some very real and strong like spiders or snakes, and then there are other things that are unknown. It’s the unknown for me that I don’t like. I like to be informed, make decisions based on facts and then make a choice. When you are dealing with things you can’t control or don’t know much about it has a fear for some of us that is rather strong.

I hope you don’t let fear get in your way of making decisions that are changes for the better in your life. I know this step of moving for my family is a big one. Some other major changes can be jobs, relocating to a different city or state, having children, dealing with parents that need care, planning for a future or even buying a home. All of these things are considered highly stressful and major changes in people’s lives.

As you think about choices in your life, changes for the better, think about whether or not your hesitation is fear and get excited about the possibilities once you move forward.

If you feel this post would be inspiring to a friend or relative please forward it to them and if you have a way of dealing with changes for the better in a more positive light please leave a comment below. Have a blessed day!

Hidden Beauty

Red Desert Flower Hiding in the Trees

Red Desert Flower Hiding in the Trees

There is beauty in many things in this world. Sometimes though you have to look more closely to see it and most of us when it comes to nature will walk right past it without even a glance. On a recent trip to Springs Preserve in Las Vegas with family and friends there was plenty of beautiful desert blooming flowers all around on the pathways and then there were some not on the pathways that you had to look a little deeper to see. That’s what this image is for me. A look at beauty not so easily found as this magnificent red desert flower peeks through the greenery of the trees.

As I go through life not only do I see many amazing and beautiful flowers, landscapes, seascapes, forest and wildlife, but I also notice the beauty in people. Making someone smile sometimes is all it takes to make the eyes sparkle, there own smile to grow into a more lively and vividly expressive face, but it also brings out the heart within the person. Take the time to say hello or just smile at someone and see how a sad or depressed expression can turn into a face of thankfulness that you even noticed to look or speak to him or her.

Life is full of challenges for all of us and some days we just don’t feel appreciated, accepted, wanted or loved. This one act will do more good for a person than you even realize. There have been countless stories told of people that thought no one noticed them or cared and they were only moments from eliminating themselves from this world. Learn to look outward at those around you and not so much as your phone and own problems. I know for myself when I focus on others it helps me to feel better because I took the time to give hope, share, be kind or even smile and that in itself helps me when I am feeling low.

Give it a try sometime and see how many people you can make smile. Spreading love to others should never be a chore but a pleasurable experience for all.

If this blog post was inspiring to you or could be to someone else you know, please forward it, or leave a comment below at how you try to show you care to others that are strangers to you. Have a blessed day!

A New Life

A new life awaits you if you would only START DOING to get it!

A new life awaits you if you would only START DOING to get it!

Since I have started a mentorship program and started the art of DOING, I can say a new life awaits me. I’ve been busy taking my fears and facing them head on. I’ve been scheduling time to photograph, to write and to do my blog each week. I’ve taken time to learn new things and to expand my goals and dreams.

I’m in the process of editing my first book, which will fall into the category of Romance. I’m a hopeless romantic so I had to write in this genre. I want my books to not only be romantic but, to provide hope, show love, and even some inspiration to those readers that decide to follow me.

I’m learning new things with my photography and trying new things that I had not thought of before. I’m developing my craft one step at a time with one photo shoot at a time. I’m choosing to photograph the things I love, which makes it easier to totally be passionate about what images I choose to capture.

I’m also now getting to share the knowledge I’ve learned through writers, photographers and my mentor with others that need some guidance. This has been quite fun and rewarding as it makes me see that I know more than I did even a year ago about my new passions in life. Giving to others after receiving such blessings is only going to make this life an even better experience.

Overcoming fears has allowed me to be productive in areas that I never thought were possible before due to them. Now, I look at those fears and ask myself why not now? Why wait years before I choose to step forth even if I fall on my face and have to get up and try again? It’s exciting to know that when you go through this and conquer a fear here and a fear there that you were the only one holding you back from those dreams in the first place.

I say to you, when are you going to start doing and conquer your fears? When are you going to make your dreams the priority over those fears? The only one holding you back is you! Find out what kind of new life you could have by facing one thing each day that could step you forward in your life to what you ultimately want and how you can help others in the process.

Leave a comment on how you have conquered a fear or made a dream come true. If you know this would inspire someone else then please forward this blog to others. Thank you for reading. Have a blessed day!