Sunday, September 21, 2008

Isn't This a Great Template???

I found this template yesterday at You really need to go there! She's got all sorts of really cool and wonderful free blogger templates like this one. I think it fits really nicely with the theme of this blog, and I love the look of it!

As you can see, I'm in the process of breathing new life into this old blog, and re-vamping a few things on my life coaching website, over at, including a new voice blog. So stop by, have a look and a listen, and see what's new!

Also, while you're at it, take a look at It's a great site with lots of great people!

Friday, September 19, 2008

5 More Ways to Add Joy to Your Life

  1. Risk openness. This tip is from Martha Beck's book The Joy Diet": "When it's time to be open about something, you'll know, because you'll want to say it. You'll want the other person to know it. You may be terrified of the vulnerability you'll feel when you open up, but desire will urge you to do it anyway. Follow its guidance."
  2. Replace your "shoulds" with "coulds". This is a modified version of an exercise found in Louise L. Hay's Love Yourself Heal Your Life Workbook: Each time you think of something that you "should" do, replace the word "should" with "could". Ask yourself "Why haven't I?". It could be that you are beating up on yourself for something that you either never wanted to do in the first place, or that wasn't your idea at all.

    It could also be that there's a belief underlying the "should" that needs to be challenged. For example: "I should go and visit my mother, because if I don't, I'm a bad daughter/son." Does not visiting your mother automatically make you a bad daughter/son? Not necessarily. It could be that every time you visit your mother, you leave feeling like a piece of crap. In that case, not visiting could be a healthy way of protecting yourself from the toxicity.
  3. Challenge a belief you have about yourself or the world. Let's say your belief is that you can't manage your money. Notice how that belief makes you feel, physically and emotionally. Ask yourself "Is this true?" Then, ask yourself "Is this always true? My guess is that your answer is probably "no". Counter the belief with evidence to the contrary. Think of how many years you've managed to put a roof over your head and food in your belly, despite your financial circumstances at the time.

    If you can't think of any evidence to disprove your belief, ask those who are supportive of you. One of my own personal beliefs that needed challenging from outside sources was that all people saw was my weight. It was during a workshop and I hadn't met any of the other attendees prior to the workshop. So I really got totally unbiased feedback on that belief, and not one person mentioned my weight as what they noticed about me. Some of the things that did get noticed were my energy, my enthusiasm and my sense of humor. It was a very eye-opening surprise. Try it sometime!
  4. Do something out of the ordinary for fun. Doing something out of the ordinary, or something you haven't done in a while can be a great way to add some joy to your life. Having fun on a regular basis is important.
  5. Think about the things that bring you joy. Think about the things that have brought you joyful memories over the past month or two. What are they? List as many of them as you can. Do they have anything in common?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Recommended Read of the Week

I've decided to re-start an old feature, the "Recommended Read of the Week". Each week, I will feature a book that I've found helpful, interesting or just plain funny.

This week's book is:

The Joy Diet by Martha Beck

Martha Beck, among other things, is the author of the bestselling Finding Your Own North Star and columnist for O Magazine. The Joy Dietconsists of 10 steps to be practiced on a daily basis to achieve a more joyful life. The steps include methods for dealing with emotional pain, identifying true desires, creativity and taking risks.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

5 Ways to Add More Joy to Your Life

  1. Start the day by listening to music that makes your heart and soul sing. I find that when I do this, it puts me in a much better place the rest of the day. Some days, it may be Strauss waltzes and polkas, and some days, it's the soundtrack to "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", but it works. If you have an alarm clock with a CD or cassette player, pop in a favorite tape or CD, and wake up to music you know you'll love.
  2. Find the funny. Read the comics in the newspaper. Call or spend time with someone who makes you laugh. Subscribe to a joke e-mail list. Watch a funny show or movie. Read a funny blog. Whatever your choice is, find something in each and every day that makes you snort with laughter. Score bonus points for doing it out loud and in public.
  3. Do something for someone else. Acts of kindness not only make both parties feel good, they may also help people live longer. Do something kind for someone else each day and you'll reap the benefits as well.
  4. Spend time with people who really "get" you. Spending time with people who appreciate and support you and your goals is uplifting. Whether it's on the phone, or in person, make a point of connecting with them regularly.
  5. Do something you truly enjoy every day. Spend a few minutes every day doing something you truly enjoy. Like photography? Take a few pictures. Love to sing? Put on your favorite song and sing it. Like shopping? Browse through a catalog or visit one of your favorite shopping websites. It doesn't have to be big, or take a lot of time, as long as it brings you joy.

Monday, September 01, 2008

5 Steps to Get Through Fear

  • Identify the fear that’s holding you back. Is it fear of looking stupid? Making a mistake? Fear of failure? Fear of success?

  • Imagine the worst-case scenario. What if what you feared actually happened? What if you really did look like the biggest moron in the neighborhood, and all your friends avoided you like you’ve suddenly developed the plague or a highly contagious rash? What if you tried learning to drive and hit a car? What if you actually wrote the “Great American Novel”, started earning checks with lots of zeroes at the end and lived in a spacious ranch in California?

  • Imagine the best-case scenario. What if you did jump off the cliff, leave your boring day job and start writing personal-growth books? What kinds of people would you meet? How would it feel to be doing what you really love? How much support would you have from your friends/family? Where would you live? What would your average day be like? Identify people and evidence that support the idea that, yes, you can!

  • Think about what you’re missing out on by not even trying.

  • Assess what you could reasonably stand to lose by going out on a limb, and whether or not you can handle it. If so, than ask yourself a big “So WHAT?” and do it!

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