Happiness Challenge

Happiness Challenge

Ready to end this month of improving our satisfaction with life with a bang?  Hopefully by now you’ve created a happiness jar and you are using it daily.  If not, go do it right now, or at LEAST grab your list from earlier this month and get ready to use it. Next week I’ll be hosting a 5 day Happiness Challenge starting Monday March 27th.  I’m so excited for this as it will be a fantastic way for you to practice adding happiness to your days.  I want it to become a habit.  A happy habit 🙂 This is how it will work.  Below is a list of daily ideas.  You can do these OR you can pull from your happiness jar or draw from your list – doesn’t matter to me so much WHAT you do as that you are doing something to increase your satisfaction with life every day. Each day you participate, post on Instagram, Facebook or even below in the comments.  I’d love to see a picture or a description of what you did.  Make sure and tag me so I see it (links to my pages below), and add #happyhabit.  Each time I see a post, picture or comment, you’ll get an entry – and at the end of the week, I’ll randomly draw a name – winner will receive a bottle of Young Living Lemon oil so they can enjoy all the projects and ways we learned to use it this month.  Participate each day, you’ll get five entries!  And you’ll have had a week of fun too, so really EVERYONE wins! Daily ideas: Enjoy...
Create a Happiness Jar

Create a Happiness Jar

It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day craziness of life that we don’t take the time to do what makes us happy.  Think about that for a moment.  That is really sad – we don’t have time for happiness?  How in the heck did THAT happen? I don’t want this to be the norm any longer, so today we are going to make a visual cue so you won’t forget to add happiness to your life each and every day.  What better way to improve the satisfaction with your life than to be enjoying it? Got your happiness list from last week?  Get it out because we’ll be using it. Now find yourself an empty jar – doesn’t have to be pretty – in fact a Mason Jar works beautifully. On small slips of paper, write down ALL the things on your list that make you happy.  Fold them up and put it in the jar.  If you are crafty, feel free to make this as pretty or interesting as you’d like, but it’s totally not necessary – function is enough! Put that jar somewhere you will see it daily.  Some suggestions:  near the coffeemaker, your computer, your toothbrush. Each day, pull out a slip of paper.  If it’s something you can do that day, by all means DO IT!  If it’s something you have to plan, put it on your calendar so it’s coming up soon.  If it’s something you can’t easily do in the next few days, give yourself five minutes to think about it, remember it and how much you enjoy it. A...

Create a Special Day

Feeling a bit overwhelmed lately?  Too busy to have fun or enjoy yourself?  Then this is exactly when you need to create a special day.  There are three steps to the process – all of which are fun and will immediately improve your mood. Look at your calendar and pick a date you can take a few hours away from everything that SHOULD be done.  Ideally take a whole day off.  If your life is anything like mine, this date might be a few weeks from now, but you CAN make the time.  Block it off on your calendar and if anything comes up, simply say “Sorry, but I can’t do XXX on that date, I already have something scheduled.” Now spend some time between your chosen date and today dreaming. What do you enjoy?  What fuels your soul?  Grab a notebook or open a folder on your phone and jot down your ideas.  Need some inspiration?  How about time in a coffee shop reading?  Browsing stores?  Taking a long and relaxing bath?  Going for a walk in the woods?  A lovely lunch alone or with a friend?  A movie?  Working on a hobby you love but can never get to?  Once you have your list, think realistically about how much time you have blocked off and pick a few things.  This planning time can be almost as fun as the actual day!!! Enjoy your special day. The great thing about this day is that it’s tailored just for you – it’s full of things you love and enjoy.  By the end of the day you’ll feel rejuvenated and ready to plunge back into the...

5 Ways to Help with Anxiety

Feeling anxious?  I run into this a lot with my coaching clients.  With the crazy, busy lifestyles we all live these days, it’s not surprising.  When you have 5 places to be between 4:00 and 8:00, not to mention dinner, homework, etc. how can you not feel anxious?  Next time you feel that tightness in your chest or the beginning of panic in your mind, give a few of these ideas a try: Slow down.  When you are anxious, your heart rate speeds up along with your breathing.  So stop for a minute or two and take 3 to 5 long, deep and slow breaths.  If possible, close your eyes.  This small pause is sometimes enough for you to catch your breath and get yourself back on track. Define what you are anxious about.  Is it true?  Are you worrying about something that just “might” happen or “might” be true?  Is it something you can’t change?  Then maybe it’s time to let it go.  A simple example (I know you might be worrying about something much bigger, but often it’s these small things that push us over the edge):  you are going to be late to an appointment because you’ve been rushing around all afternoon or are over scheduled.  Is there anything you can do to be on time?  If not, call ahead and let whomever you are meeting know and then cover up your clock.  You are going to be late regardless so quit focusing on how late you are and just get to where you need to go safely. Distraction.  Break the cycle if you can by reading...

Food Prep for Weekly Success

It’s pretty apparent I believe strongly in preparing ahead of time.  Last week I shared how I keep lunch making stress to a minimum.  To keep things even easier and to help with all meals during the week, there are a few things I regularly do right after grocery shopping.  These few tasks will make EVERY working mom’s mealtimes go a little bit smoother. I know some of you will read this, roll your eyes, and say to yourself  “NO WAY!  I don’t have time for this nonsense.”  BUT, I timed myself and it took me twenty minutes start to finish.  The benefits include healthier eating and less stress for the whole week.  that’s worth twenty minutes to me.  Got older kids?  Make your life even easier and enlist their help. As soon as I get home from the grocery, I pull out the cutting board and a knife and prep a bowl of veggies.  Once that’s done, I can pack the veggie portion of school lunches in seconds, and if dinner is rushed, this bowl can be pulled out as a healthy side.  I also make a small bowl of dip or hummus to enjoy with the vegetables, and a pint size mason jar of healthy salad dressing (Just mix a few T of extra virgin olive oil with a few T of some type of vinegar, add salt, pepper and any other herbs you’d like.  You can also add a t or 2 of dijon mustard.  Yum!). Greens are washed and spun dry, then packaged in bags with a damp paper towel.  Now they are ready to be...
Easy and Healthy School Lunches

Easy and Healthy School Lunches

Wherever you live, I suspect school is back in full swing by now.  A few years ago, I did a post on my lunch “formula.”   The method I use to pack easy, healthy lunches for my kids.  This is still exactly how I do it, but as an update I thought I’d delve a little deeper into the details. Every week, I try to mix up the lunches so that the kids eat a variety of foods.  Below is an example week – you can see that each lunch follows my “formula,” but contains slightly different components. M – salad with leftover grilled chicken, cucumbers and sliced peppers, berries, pretzels, chocolate covered blueberries, water T – yogurt with granola, snap peas, watermelon, crackers, water W – hummus and pretzel crisps, celery/cucumber/carrots, sliced peaches/plums, chocolate square, water Th – soup or chili, whole apple, crackers, carrots, water F – peanut butter & jelly sandwich, applesauce, cucumbers, Pirate’s Booty or popcorn, water Notice how earlier in the week I include berries, watermelon, peppers and snap peas.  The items that are freshest and taste best right after I purchase them.  Apples and carrots tend to last longer so they are typically reserved for Thursday/Friday.  Ditto for peanut butter and jelly. I also often tuck a little note or joke in the lunchbox – not every day, but definitely several times a week.  Right now I’m LOVING Lunchbox Love – they are easy, pretty and fun, but you could totally take a post it note and make your own. I tend to prep and pack lunches the night before – usually while I’m making or...

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