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Archive for the ‘Faith In Yourself’ Category

aging www.hispasturepress.com

I find aging, or the topic thereof, interesting.

When I was in my early 20’s I couldn’t wait to grow a little older. Being young can be tough, especially in an office workplace setting. I was at the bottom of the totem pole, and I knew it. I typed invoices on a manual typewriter and I was the one that became the favorite filing clerk. I had a lot of proving to do! I tend to remember how I felt (40 years ago), and younger folks probably want to roll their eyes at me when I tell them I know how tough it can be to be young. I am old, what do I know?

When I turned 25 I was surprised when I realized there were no more age markers to look forward to. 13, 21, and for whatever reason, 25 had arrived and I had looked forward to it. No single age has mattered to me since.

I recently asked a woman about her upcoming birthday, and I made positive comments about our age frame. She did not respond and her facial expression was very controlled, stoic. I started to gently ask, “Did you hear me?”, and then I realized that she had. Oops. That moment was a first for me, and a preventable last.

See, I do not find age embarrassing.

When I was a young child I enjoyed touching my grandmother’s soft hands. I loved to kiss her on her cheek. Somehow, that sagging skin (which was beautiful to me), was precious. She was my elder and I appreciated it so very much. Her eyes and skin reflected wisdom. He gray hair was a crown.

Two things do typically catch my attention, though. The first is any statement along the lines of, “An elderly 60-year-old woman was pushing the grocery cart.” What? Elderly? Or, when I converse with someone 20-30 years old and they say, “My grandmother does the same thing.” I then do the math in my head. Yes, they could very well be a grandchild of mine. A young woman relaxing in our community hot tub said to my husband, “Oh, I know, my parents are old too.” Yep. Ancient. Good for a belly laugh.

Interesting, isn’t it?

Oh, and one more thing, the older I get, people that are my age don’t look so old to me anymore. When did older people stop looking old?

How do you feel about age? Is it a number, or do the oncoming years scare you? Do you hide your “real” age from others?

 

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action steps, first step to small business, solo-preneaurMy husband shares inspirational videos with me. This is one of the things that I love about him, he knows my heart. He knows where I am at today, and where I want to be tomorrow.

The subject of a recent video was a woman who loves to bake. Her specialty – banana bread.

She did not see the value in her unique and delicious recipe but her loved ones did. Her friends and family presented her with colorful labels and attractive bread wrappers and commanded, “Now go to work. Bake your bread.”

She baked her golden loaves and headed out to make cold calls one Friday afternoon. She was filled with anticipation of a display on the front counter of a local meat shop. The owner did not say no, but told her, “I hate to disappoint you. You are not going to sell banana bread in a butcher shop.” Determined, she placed a basket of sixty small loaves on a glass display shelf.

By Saturday afternoon the basket was empty.

Days later, the buzz question in the meat shop was, “When will the banana bread be available again?”

Today, the banana bread women does not bake a single loaf for the bread basket in the meat shop. She bakes 1000 loaves a day.

I have my head wrapped around a new business idea. The creativity wheels are turning. I was sitting at my desk at my full-time job when the chirp of a new text message caught my attention. It was my husband, “Gotta make the banana bread.” Sheer encouragement. Bam!

There is no giving up. The words I CAN NOT DO THIS are not an option. I, you, we, she, must make the banana bread. The support that I (or you) receive may not be cute labels and wrappers, but out of love, I am reminded to make the bread. I am reminding you to bake your bread!

When you want to give up, don’t give in, smell that bread!

Dreaming is not an action. Thinking is not doing. Taking steps that move me, and you, closer to our end goal, towards the vision that we have, is action.

Bake your banana bread!

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Saying goodbye to our past, the things that we loved, can be painful. Once we realize how we have drug our feet it becomes less of a struggle. Imagine strolling down a beautiful wooded path while dragging one foot as you go. How tiring would that be?

shut the gate www.hispasturepress.com

I will use the example of an entrepreneur, myself. I put in many hours to build my soap business. I went out into the world and made an abundance of connections with people, and this became a part of who I was. When it came time to close my business, I held onto the final threads, and it began to interfere with my new aspirations. This meant the life-blood that could have gone to the present, or the future, was squeezed down like a plaque-filled artery. What could have sprung forward and pumped fresh oxygen into the veins of life, flowed out as only a fraction of what I had to give.

What we often fail to realize is that our past, even though we live for the moment, does rightly become a part of who we are. These past celebrations enhance us. We do not drop out of a full pursuit of life because of our former loyalties, instead, we flourish today…and always.

Are you holding onto anything that prevents you from being all that you can be today?

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Share Encourage and Grow is my motto – a shortened version of my life and work mission statement.

I looked at these words this morning and I thought about how important it is for each of us to support one another.

Encourage others to share with you. Listening is a priceless gift that doesn’t cost a penny. When you listen with your full attention, putting everything else aside – no glances at your phone, no staring at the television, you craft a sense of comfort with the person that is talking. They know you are there for them. Everyone, especially in this busy and tumultuous world, can use exactly that!

To encourage, well…there aren’t many words that hold more meaning. We all want to grasp onto the feeling when encouragement fills our head, but life does not resemble a flat line, it has so many ups and downs. When you are up, chances are someone you know is down. Actually, a huge part of the exhilaration in life is the trip up, the anticipation of reaching the peak. Unfortunately, after the thrilling shock of cresting wears off, we end up at the bottom again…often contemplating, where do we go from here?

Growth, where is your purpose in life without it? A friend once said, “I am so careful, I intentionally stay within my comfort zone – every single day.” This is an extreme example of someone that is not happy. He will not go beyond his normal day to day routine, and he trusts his tunnel vision. I do not believe people have to lead such an exciting life that they feel compelled to write a book about it, but, stagnant is just that, stuck in place with nothing to do and nowhere to go. I believe, not only do we benefit from growth, but it encourages those around us as well. We set the example when we learn to accept the challenges in life, knowing that they hold value – growth.

Are you ready to take the initiative? Remember what your friends are passionate about, what their strengths are, and look after their backs. Ask a friend purposely, because you truly want to see good things develop in their life, “So, where are you at with _____?” Encourage them to stick with their dreams. Don’t push…encourage…listen.

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sandbox www.hispasturepress.com @serban enache, dreamstime

It is your sandbox. Play in it.

What do you own that nobody can take away?

Your thoughts and creativity.

Do you yearn for others to stop and share in your passions…to keep you on track? Does this cause you hesitation in your personal pursuits?

Feel the sun on your back. Feel the freedom in the breeze.

Sit down in your sandbox and allow the grains to sift through your fingers. Create your unique sculpture – the gift that sits within your mind.

This is your time.

It is your sandbox. There are no limitations. Play in it.

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www.hispasturepress.com waterfall

The green paper we grasp in our hands allows us to buy clothes for our closets (stockpiling what we often don’t need), cars that we drive, and it slips gold rings on our fingers. I am convinced, none of these items reflect wealth.

The cashier asked the man in the grocery store, “Do you have everything you need?”

He looked at her, nodded at those in line behind him, smiled and said, “I not only have everything I need, I have everything I want.”

Peace comes with knowing that our needs are, and will be, met.

Contentment is living life to it’s fullest, just as it is, with a sense that our most valuable personal treasures are the same as those we hold in our soul.

You make known to me the path of life;

you will fill me with joy in your presence,

with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

(Psalm 16:11 NIV)

What treasures do you want to store up?

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I am not trying to judge.

I have heard this statement made a number of times in the recent past, from a variety of folks.

It is as if people want to cover their tracks right off the bat, quickly throw in the disclaimer, before they innocently say what they admire, or do not admire. Or, what they are concerned about, or not concerned about. You get the picture.

I like the old saying: If you do not have anything nice to say, do not say it at all. I want to shake the hand of the first person that uttered those words. Without a doubt, though, he or she had intentions of teaching someone to be diplomatic, cautious with their words, but not to the point they apologized before issuing an innocent opinion from their lips.

If we are not slanderous. If we put the best interests of others in the forefront, and we are being the best that we can be, why are we so focused on making the nervous statement, “I am not trying to judge.”

I know you aren’t judging, I would rather hear what you have to say without trying to figure out why you are making an excuse for it.

Big sigh. Am I the only one?

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