Monday, February 16, 2015

8 Goals To Live By---#5 Be Present

I am presently babysitting my nine month old grandson and I would not be writing if he were not taking his nap right now.  When he is awake I get on the floor and play with him.  We read books, play with his various toys, or he walks around the room with me while being safely secured between my knees, his soft little hands grasping mine.   When I was here two days ago I took him for a walk in his stroller.  We ended up sitting on the grass for almost thirty minutes.  No toys, just the texture and the scent of the grass and the various sounds all around us.  Together we enjoyed looking up at the trees as their leaves rustled in the gentle breeze.  

I didn't have one of these when my children were small!

I babysit my grandson because I love him and I love my daughter and her husband.  I do something for them but they in turn do so much more for me.  If we let them, grand babies can teach us how to be present, without any distractions or interruptions.  It's totally different than when my children were small because at that time I still had to do my laundry, keep the house clean, prepare meals, and try to keep caught up on my other work.  Thank God I didn't have a cell phone or a laptop back then or who knows what other responsibilities would have beckoned!  Grandchildren are a different story.  When I am with Christian I do nothing else but be with him.  I don't answer my telephone, I don't check my emails, or my Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, etc, etc.  I am fully present with him and this is the gift he gives to me.  I'm convinced that our times together are even better for me than they are for him.  Being in the present moment with someone allows a connection that some of us are missing.  It is a time when we can concentrate on what is real and what is lasting.  Love, shown in time spent with someone is a special gift which creates memories that outlive any other gift you can give.  I am so thankful that I have been given this opportunity to show love in this way.

We can all practice living in the present. Wouldn't it be nice if the next time you are with a friend or a family member you put down your telephone (everyone will survive if you don't answer that text in the next hour or so), turn off the t.v., stop all of your business, and just sit and try to really hear what the other is trying to say to you.  I'm talking about being truly present

A friend of mine passed away a couple of years ago yet I will always remember him as the one who carried a little poem with him 24/7.  You could always count on Tom Harken taking out his little card and reading it to someone in the room.  He often gave away a copy and I have one that he gave to me. The poem goes like this:

I have only just a minute,
Only sixty seconds in it.
Forced upon me, can't refuse it.
Didn't seek it, didn't choose it.
But it's up to me
to use it.
I must suffer if I lose it.
Give account if I abuse it.
Just a tiny little minute,
but eternity is in it.
         Dr. Benjamin E. Mays

As a goal for this year make it a point to be totally present for your friends, family, and anyone you come in contact with .  When you are sitting across the table at lunch with a friend please don't take your cell phone out of your purse, or your pocket-- not even for a minute.   The message to the other person is that the one calling or trying to get in touch with you is more important than they are.  If someone needs to reach you it won't matter if it's thirty minutes or an hour later when they do.

If you don't have a grandchild then find someone to help once in while.  Spending time focusing on the needs of another will get you out of your ruts and help you be a more grateful person.  There are plenty of people who need your minutes to help them get through some really tough hours, days, weeks, and years.  If you need advice knowing where you might be needed please contact me and I will try to help.   I have network of amazing friends who run some awesome non-profits and they are always looking for volunteers.    ...Or it could be as simple as helping the person who lives nearby who can no longer go to the grocery store by themselves.

Gotta run....time to be with Christian!

So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.  Psalm 90:12

To contact me:

Friday, February 13, 2015

Goal #4-Be Healthy

For updates re: my father-in-law, Dr. Robert H. Schuller please go to:

The Employee Health Promotion program

 Health Definition
n. noun
  1. The overall condition of an organism at a given time.
  2. Soundness, especially of body or mind; freedom from disease or abnormality. (Hmmm? Where’s the spiritual?!)<note by me!
  3. A condition of optimal well-being.

 A lot of my formal schooling is in nutrition so people can instinctively think my main goal in coaching is to critique diets and assign strict exercise regimes.  Although physical health is an important aspect of overall health, truly being vigorous and strong involves so much more than just eating right and exercising.  I have met many people are in great shape physically while on the inside they are dying emotionally and spiritually.   The reverse can also be true.  One can be in a great place mentally or spiritually but they neglect their bodies, thus are out of sink with life in many other ways.  There are those who are “so spiritually minded that they do no earthly good.” 
 In my book,   "Healthy Family, Happy Life: What Healthy Families Learn From Healthy Moms" I outline various characteristics of health which include specifics of spiritual and emotional well-being and their integral roles in helping you live as a whole and a healthy person.  Some of these would include:  being honest with others, having clear-cut goals, striving through hardship, forgiving and loving yourself and others, and knowing where you stand with your relationship with God.   I believe all of these, and more, play a very important role in how healthy you are and how peaceful you live your life as a result of the thoughts you think, the attitude you have towards others, and yes…what you put in your body and how much physical activity you get (certain hormones released as a result of exercise and choosing the right fuel for your body have a huge influence on your emotional and spiritual health) Everything we do effects every part of us since we are laced together and “created in the image of God,” body, mind, and soul.  

It’s the middle of February so by now you should have written down your goals: physical, emotional, and spiritual.  You should have a clear understanding of where you want to see your social and love life, your family and friendships, and whether or not your work is or will be satisfying.  If you need help with your 2015 goals please refer to my post on Goal Setting from last year.  You can read it here.  If you are feeling overwhelmed with this process or if you need help evaluating your life and the direction it’s going, you can always talk to me.  I can coach you for just one session or for as many as you need.  To reach me you can email me here.

Your life should burn brightly with passion and purpose.  You should embrace good health by giving your body everything it needs and your should be in touch with your emotions and your past, and be able to forgive all of your past mistakes.  Last but not least, you should have a clear understanding of being a “spiritual being on this physical journey” called life.

 “For I will restore health unto you.  I will heal your wounds.”   Jeremiah 30:17  

To reach me:

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Goal #3-Living A LIfe Of Gratitude

Goal #3-Be Grateful

This is the day which the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.  
Psalm 118:24

"Being happy does not mean having what you want, but wanting what you have."

 Thousands of years of literature talk about the benefits of cultivating gratefulness as a virtue and my intention today is to encourage you to be thankful even if you're going through a tough time.  There are multiple scientific studies that show how living with an attitude of gratitude really does improve your life.

In Robert Emmons book, "Thanks! How The New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier" he reports on several studies. In the first, he and his colleagues divided participants into three groups, each of which made weekly entries in a journal. One group wrote five things they were grateful for. Another group described five daily hassles and a control group listed five events that had affected them in some way. Those in the gratitude group felt better about their lives overall, were more optimistic about the future, and reported fewer health problems than the other participants. Results from a second study suggested that daily writing led to a greater increase in gratitude than weekly practice.

In another study he discovered how people using daily gratitude journals report more satisfaction with their lives and are more optimistic about the future than people who don't. Interestingly,  grateful people also report getting more sleep, spending less time awake before falling asleep and feeling more refreshed in the morning.

Researchers at the University of Connecticut found that gratitude can have a protective effect against heart attacks. Studying people who had experienced one heart attack, the researchers found that those patients who saw benefits and gains from their heart attack, such as becoming more appreciative of life, experienced a lower risk of having another heart attack.

Hopefully I've convinced you that living a life of gratitude is the only way to live.  There are so, so many reason to be thankful...always.  Oh...and don't forget to say "thank you" when someone does something nice for you or pays you a compliment!

For more specific ideas on how to set your goals you can read one of my posts from January 2014 here:
Goal Setting 101

"The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving."
H.U. Westermayer

Gratitude turns what we have into enough. ~Author Unknown

To reach me you may write me 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

The #2 Goal To Live By In 2015

Goal #2 For 2015-Be Generous

 Sometimes I hear people say that they don’t get involved in non-profits or charities because they just can’t afford it.  Or they say things like, “I just don’t have anything to give.”  I think we can all feel that way from time to time but I am going to challenge that belief because everyone has something to give.  Whether it’s to a lonely neighbor, a troubled teen, or an organization that feeds and shelters the homeless; giving back is critical to our well being.  Being generous with the gifts that God has given you will make you a healthier person in emotionally, spiritually, and physically.  It will create in  you a more grateful heart as you learn of the unique plights of those in your own neighborhood. Giving of your time and your talents is very helpful for others but just as critical for you.  Even a smile or a kind word can make a huge difference in the life of another.  It's also important to remember this:  it’s not all about the giving of your finances, although not valuing our money over human need is an important attitude to live by. I like the saying, “use money and love people but never use people and love money.”  At the end of the day it’s all about love.

“The emotional benefits [of generosity] are that we cultivate an internal sense of plenitude, enjoy positive feelings from those within our community, and experience an improved self-esteem. This goes for time, love, and attention just as much — if not more — than for money,” says psychologist Chloe Carmichael, PhD, who has a private practice in New York City.
The benefits of giving back don’t just apply to adults. A 2013 study published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics examined how volunteering might affect the physical health of adolescents. Researchers divided 106 tenth graders into two groups — one group regularly volunteered one hour a week for 10 weeks, and the other group didn’t volunteer at all. After 10 weeks, the students in the volunteer group had lower levels of cholesterol and inflammation, and lower BMIs than the other group. 
Generosity improves our self-image, lowers our blood pressure, gives us better heart health, and improves our outlook, empathy, and intimacy towards others. Over and over we read about the many benefits of volunteering so make sure you put that towards the top of your list of goals for 2015.  Your children, grandchildren, and anyone in your sphere of influence will also benefit as they witness your example.

“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”  Luke 6:38

To reach me you may email me at:

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Goal #1 for 2015-Be Curious

Curiosity is tied to intelligence and health in body, mind, and soul in multiple ways.   Remember when you were a kid and you drove your parents or your grandparents nuts with all the questions?  You had to ask those questions as you developed as a person in order to know how to get by in this world.    What happens as we age is most of us lose that childlike quality of wanting to know "why?"  Sometimes we just aren't paying attention or other times we just aren't interested.  It could also be that we don't want to come off as being dumb or uneducated.  No ones knows about everything so the first thing I want to encourage you to do is to start asking "why" and "how" questions.   After doing so hopefully you will comment about some of your experiences so all of us can learn from it.
Being a curious person means that you have a thirst for knowledge and a desire to explore subjects and places that may be foreign to you.  Delving deeper into your faith life, learning a new language,  starting a garden,  finding out about the planets or the stars, or learning just about anything out of your comfort zone will help your life grow and prosper.  Curious people tend to have better and more intense relationships with others as well.   As an example there are many studies that show how studying anything new will help you prepare for a test, no matter what the subject.  Click here or here if you are interested in learning more.

Out of the "8 Goals To Live By In 2015" my first is to encourage you to learn something new.  If if frightens you to do so then that's probably a good thing.  The main thing is that you step out of your routine and learn about a new subject, start a new hobby,  travel to that far-away place you've always dreamed about,  or write that book you've always said you would write. 

Next time I will be sharing how generosity is one of the keys to happiness in 2015 and beyond!

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will."

Romans 12:2

**Make sure you join me on The Call on January 15th at 6pm Pacific time.  Dial 530-881-1300 and key-in 642848#   Can't make it this month?  Join me and my husband any month on the same day and at the same time.   Talk to you then!