Perfection

Perfection, is one of those words that you have to wonder what really is the meaning of it. Another example, the word average. What really is the meaning of average? Is anyone really average or perfect? Is it attainable with all the quirks and differences we as humans have? Let’s take a look at what the dictionary has to say about the word Perfection…

Dictionary.com

  • The state or quality of being or becoming perfect
  • The highest degree of proficiency, skill or excellence, as in some art.
  • A perfect embodiment or example of something
  • A quality, trait, or feature of the highest degree of excellence
  • The highest or most nearly perfect degree of a quality or trait
  • The act or fact of perfecting

WIKI

What It Takes to Be a Hero

The word hero means many things to many people. When we were children a hero could have been those you saw on television with supernatural power (or really cool gadgets). Always saving the day, they encourage us to strive to be better than we are.

But what about real heroes? If you had to give the meaning or example of a hero without using a fictional character. What/who would you say is an example?

Hero

Image by Imagine_Images from Pixabay

The Difference Between a Hero and a Champion

These two words are most often used interchangeably, but I’ve found that there is a very real difference to them.

A champion is someone who had become the best at something, using their skills and talents to defeat their opponents, stating that they are the best. A hero, on the other hand, is someone who is admired for their courage and bravery in times of trouble.

The Qualities of a Hero is Someone Who…

  • Loves others more than themselves
  • Believes in something so deeply, they will do what it takes to live up to that belief
  • Sacrifices themselves for that belief
  • Listens to others and encourages them, even though they have their own pain and grief
  • Remains humble throughout it all

What It Takes…

Training

Image by 5132824 from Pixabay

To be a hero in the eyes of others as well as yourself, it takes a lot. A lot of qualities, a lot of skills, just a lot! Below is a list of some traits and skills one must have to be a hero. (Or at least strive to achieve)

  • Courage
  • Dedication
  • Bravery
  • Selflessness
  • Belief
  • Sacrifice
  • Serve Others
  • Take Risks
  • Determination
  • Motivation
  • Love

Why We Need Heroes

As we’ve seen in TV, movies and even in real life, we need hero’s to encourage us to be stronger, to be there when we need them, to understand there are times we just need them around, not talking, not words, just their presence.

We, as humans, look to those we see as heroes for inspiration, admiration, and a picture of strength in our darkest moments.

That person who helps others simply because it should or must be done, and because it is the right thing to do, is indeed without a doubt, a real superhero

~ Stan Lee

Where We Can Find Heroes

Oh my goodness, why would I put this in here if we all know where we can find heroes? Well, you may be surprised by my next few words. Or perhaps you will be expecting them:

You can find them everywhere!

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

I bet when I put that subtitle in there, the first thing that came to your mind was the newest Marvel Movie with all of its superheroes lined up to fight for the thousands of people within a city or the entire word.

Or perhaps you thought of The Lord of The Rings, where you have a ragtag group of beings that are destined for the same goal, but only two make it to the final destination. (Not saying that didn’t have help with a diversion, they were the only two who mad it to Mount Doom with the ring)

Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.

~ Galadriel – The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

Where Are They Hiding?

Stories are build on heroes. They thrive on the the characters overcoming all odds to come out on top, to achieve their goal, to gain the object that has been their obsession for the last 200 or so pages.

Each and every movie, TV show, novel, short story, etc has a hero. The characters may not seem like your typical hero, but they are one, nonetheless. They are determined, even when things are dire and they feel there is no way forward. They strive to help others for the sake of providing a needed service, they listen and provide encouragement even when they themselves are in need of the same encouragement and they remain humble through it all.

You know what else, we have heroes in reality as well. Yeah, I know. Of course, we do. We see them on TV saving animals who’ve fallen into holes or a child in need of medical attention, I’m not bashing those in any way. I recognize a hero when I see one, but when you really look at your life, do you see any that are closer to home?

Is there anyone around you that makes a difference to your life, right now? I bet you can name a few. They are there for you when you need it, giving you advice, help, a listening ear, and more. Here’s another but… do you know what they are going through right now? Those people are the real heroes.

Even though they have problems, issues, struggles and hardship; they make sure they are there when someone needs them, like you. It’s not the talents (or superpowers) you have that matter, it’s how you choose to use your talents that make you a real hero. Each and every one of us has a hero waiting to be set free.

How You Can Work to be a Hero

Image by prettysleepy1 from Pixabay

Though not everyone will gain the recognition of a hero, you can do small things that make you a hero in training or even a hero to yourself.

Let me explain: Because I’m not one to lead you into thinking you’ll never be a recognized hero to a whole town or city, I want you to think of this as a small step toward your goal. And who’s to say you aren’t already someone’s hero right now. It’s a nice thing to think about, isn’t it? Well let’s get started…

Be Your Own Hero

  • Everyone has things they hate to do, right? Talking on the phone, gardening, exercise, etc. Choose one of those things you hate to do and do one each day.
  • Work toward a goal. Like the stories you read, every hero has an internal and external goal. Discover what yours are and strive to achieve them.
  • Each of us has those bad habits we love to hate. Try each day to break that habit and make yourself a better person for breaking that habit.
  • Choose to live like a hero each and every day, exemplifying the traits and qualities mentioned above.
  • Find what fills your spirit to it’s fullest and do it.

Be Someone Else’s Hero

  • Do what you can to help others without expectation
  • Strive to be the change you want to see in the world around you. If you change, you’ll encourage others to do the same.
  • Strive to be the change you want to see in the world around you. If you change, you’ll encourage others to do the same.
  • Strive to perform random acts of kindness – you never know how important that one act can be to the right person at the right time.

Final Thoughts

You don’t have to be super to be a hero, you just have to be you.

Champion

Champion

Champion

What is a Champion?

WIki

    • An ongoing winner in a game or contest.
    • Someone who is chosen to represent a group of people in a contest.
    • Somebody who fights for a cause or status.
    • Someone who fights on another’s behalf.
  • Acting as a champion; that has defeated all one’s competitors.
  • Excellent; beyond compare.
  • Excellent; brilliant; superb; deserving of high praise.
  • To promote, advocate, or act as a champion for (a cause, etc.).
  • To challenge.

Dictionary.com

  • a person who has defeated all opponents in a competition or series of competitions, so as to hold first place:
  • anything that takes first place in competition
  • an animal that has won a certain number of points in officially recognized shows
  • a person who fights for or defends any person or cause:
  • a champion of the oppressed.
  • a fighter or warrior.
  • to act as champion of; defend; support:
  • Obsolete. to defy.
  • first among all contestants or competitors.
  • Informal

What is a champion?

A champion is more than a single person, everyone has someone in their corner encouraging, coaching, motivating, and inspiring them to do better, to reach the next level. Like a parent does for their child, a teacher should for their students, employers should for their employees. The world would be a better place if we had more champions around.

They are they type of people that will take responsibility, making sure success is achieved and assemble their team to work around a cause.

Traits of a champion

Champion 2

Every Champion has a set of traits that sets them apart from others. These could be as follows:

  • Never give up, an I mean, NEVER!
  • Find Humor and Laughter
  • Be Perceptive
  • Love Learning
  • Find or Have Self-Motivation
  • Competence
  • Self-Worth
  • Spirituality
  • Perseverance
  • Creativity
  • Inspire Others
  • Dare to Leave Your Comfort Zone
  • Be Authentic
  • Find Your Bravery
  • Be Character – Driven
  • Be Decisive
  • Engage With Others
  • Be Fearless
  • Become Goal – oriented
  • Humble
  • Just
  • Knowledgeable
  • Listener
  • Motivating
  • Noble
  • Optimistic
  • Progressive – keep moving, learning, growing
  • Wise

Qualities of a champion

All champions posses many qualities, some are as follows:

Persistence – If you really desire something, you must go after it.

Trust yourself – If you have a feeling nagging at you that something isn’t right, be strong enough to walk away, and know that other opportunities will present themselves.

Team Support – Surround yourself with people who are on your side, will encourage, and support you.

Physical and Mental health – No champion is a couch potato who doesn’t keep learning. Think positively to be more positive. Always keep learning new things, you never know when it will come in handy.

Helpful – Don’t be afraid to help others with no reward in return. The knowledge that you did what was helpful and good is the reward.

Love – Love yourself and others

How to be a champion

The best way to be a champion is to be better than you were yesterday. Constantly strive to improve and do your best. Grow, improve and exit your comfort zone, then you will be the champion you’re striving to be.

Together

Find Your Inner Champion

No not the character, yourself!

Find Your Inner Talent – Discover and develop your natural talents. The things you excel at without to much struggle. That’s not to say you don’t continue learning, you can always improve on your talents. You just need to find them first.

Know Your Limitations – Understand your weaknesses, and build off of them. Don’t feel like you can’t use them to your advantage in some way. Knowing what your weaknesses are makes you stronger.

Explore All of Your Talents – You may have more than one area you’re strong at, find which one you are more tuned to and explore that, but don’t forget all those other talents hiding in the background waiting to be utilized. You never know when one can be used with another.

Try to Master New Skill – When you learn new skills, do what you can to master it.

Identify Your Main Goal – When you find your main goal, begin working toward it until you achieve it.

Training Like A Champion

Become an Exceptional Student – A champion studies to improve their skills, learning all they can when they can.

Find Phill and Learn Everything You Can – Find your mentor and learn all you can from them.

Develop Your Training – Build your skills, study to improve, and work to make yourself better.

Train Your Body and Mind – Keep your thinking positive, be confident. Your mind and body are connected, you need to train them both to work together, with each other.

Find Your Motivation – There are always times where we’ll find ourselves in a downward spiral. Find your motivation in writing, music, collages, etc. Whatever you can do to keep going, do it.

Reward/Discipline Yourself – Keep yourself en route by giving yourself a punishment for not achieving your goal, but reward yourself when you do achieve it.

Be a Good Sport

Leave It On The Field – “Do your best and forget the rest” – Tony Horton. He had it right when he said those words. Don’t dwell on what you could have done better. Do your best and leave it as that. (Something I always feel and need to get better at leaving it ‘on the field’)

Win/Lose Gracefully – Don’t brag or put others down, learn from your losses and use them to motivate yourself to improve your skills.

Give Credit Where It’s Due – There is always someone in your corner and they deserve recognition as well for all they’ve done to motivate, encourage and support you along the way.

Take Responsibility for Success/Failure – Only you can decide whether or not you’re a success. Don’t blame others for your mistakes, own them and move forward.

Carrying yourself like a champion

Celebrate Wins, Big and Small – enough said.

Surround Yourself with the Successful – Surround yourself with like-minded people who will support you as you do them.

Be Optimistic – Stay positive

Find Champion Role Models – Find someone you can look up too, get wisdom from, gain inspiration from.

Find Your Next Main Goal – Once you’ve achieved one goal, it’s time to find another. Where is your next challenge?

Why you are failing to become a champion

Worry, uncertainty, and fear of failure will sneak up on you when you least expect it. It’s like a sickness that tries to eat away at you until there is nothing left but an empty shell. Don’t allow those to pull you down. Find your courage, your strength to stand up and overcome the obstacles when you’re down and trudge on. Keep pulling yourself from the mud, and take that step, then another toward your goal.  You’ll reach it before you know it.

Challenge

Losing Focus can be another reason you’re not being who you’re striving to become. When you let things sidetrack you into procrastination, or skipping lessons. You’re doing yourself a disservice by cheating yourself out of your achievements.

We all have those moments when we feel unmotivated, everyone goes through it at one time or another. Find what you need to invigorate your motivation and keep going. Create a board with what you’re trying to achieve your goal for. Carry a small journal to record your every achievement and review it to see how far you’ve come (and how close your getting!) Create what you need to keep those motivations high and you can achieve anything.

Final Thoughts

You are capable of achieving and accomplishing so much ore than you realize. Don’t be afraid to reach for your dreams and work toward the goals you’ve set for yourself. We’ve all got them, know you’re not alone in your journey.

Start by simply doing something each day to get you closer to where you want to be. Small steps will will add up as you go so start taking that step and become a champion!

This Month’s Writing Theme: Heroes

This month’s theme is about all about Heroes!

What do you think are the best qualities of a hero and who is a hero in your life? Who is your favorite fiction hero and why?

Heroes

Example: I feel the best qualities of a hero are their determination, perseverance, and courage in the face of diversity. Who is a hero in my life? Well, there are many. I see heroes every day, but if I had to choose just one, I would say my dad. If you’ve been reading my blog, I’ve mentioned all that he’s gone through and and all he’s overcome. He just learned that he’s going blind on top of all that he’s overcome recently and I know he will do so again with this. He is my hero. 

My favorite fictional Hero, well, that would be a tie between Hiccup and Hero. I Love HTTYD and Big Hero 6, these two main characters are, well, human. They have regular lives, while still doing extraordinary things and they struggle as we do with death, dating, and more. 

So, what are your thoughts? Let me know who your hero is in real life and fiction!

 

 

Updates

Progress Update

Update

Oh my gosh, guys, things have been one whirlwind of a mess after another. Nothing has gone as planned and progress has slowed, but sometimes you just have to roll with the punches. Here is an update of what I’ve been dealing with:

  • I sent out my manuscript to some beta readers and frankly, the feedback wasn’t good. Many stopped reading all together.
  • My dad ended up in the ICU to the point where he had to have someone with him whenever he left the house (and to be honest, I went over there to check on him even when he didn’t leave) my kids and I walked with him every day to get his strength back up and to keep his diabetes under control. He’s doing a lot better now.
  • Shortly after his recovery, they purchased a new house and my kids and I helped them move (as much as we could)
  • Guess the hospital needed someone in our family there, because I ended up there while helping them move. Ive had muscle spasms in my back (under my shoulder blades) and though I tried all my stretches and techniques to loosen it, I couldn’t move without pain shooting there. At 2am, I couldn’t take it any longer and went to the ER.
  • Then, the flu ran through the house so my kids were both sick and my husband had a cold.

With all that going on, I just didn’t have the motivation or strength to keep things going as they were. So, I’ll update you where my progress is with each of my usual categories and what’s happening to get back on track.

Books

Book Update

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Series Update

The response from betas affected me more than I would like to admit. After going through eight chapters, I realized what they were all talking about.

Even though I can swear that I’ve gone though that manuscript more times than I can count. I can even remember changing a large section. I take responsibility for not getting the right copy to my betas.

Where the right copy is, I can’t seem to find. So it’s back to square one; taking the feedback I’ve received and revising it until it’s ready for another round of betas to read through it.

This is one hill on my journey and I’ve learned that even though Scrivener creates backups for your work, Prowritingaid may not transfer your stuff back when you’ve gone through it with their software. Time to add saving a copy to my checklist and update my process.

Stand Alone/Possible Series

I have nearly finished the book. You know, the one I’m still deciding whether to make a series or a stand alone and the definite stand alone is still on hold as I work through my problems. To be honest, a break was necessary and all those things piling on top of each other, forced me to do what was necessary for me to keep going.

There are just times you need to take a break from things and come back to it with fresh, new eyes. Let me tell you, it’s been eye opening.

To Be Read

One of my goals was to NOT add to my To Be Read list and I have only added books where the author has asked me personally to read. Boy have I found some great stories.

I myself have not added to that list, and I’ve begun reading through them. You would think being on break would have made more time for reading, but I just wasn’t into anything that dealt with writing and that included reading.

Yeah, crazy, I know. I never thought I would say that, but it’s how things happened.

Short Stories

As things have thawed, including me, I have plans to get back to this soon. I’ve finally figured out how to make Trello work for me and I’ve been slowly adding the things to it that I’ve been putting off. Short stories are one of them, but I’ve got some in mind that I’ve written down (you know some just won’t leave you until you have it down on paper) and I will have those to you by the end of July early August at the latest. Don’t worry, I’ll update my Trello boards to include that.

Beta Readers

This is what started my downward spiral. I’m the type of person who lets EVERYTHING get to them and I’ll dwell on it forever. It’s something I’ve been working to get better at for years.

The problem was that I put so much time, energy, and soul into my book and the feedback was, well, brutal. I was not expecting the reaction I got from something I worked so hard on.

As I worked through the feedback (mostly of the one person who read the whole book), I realized my mistake, and it was mine. The copy I sent to the beta readers was not as polished as I could have made it. Though I remember changing sections or deleting sections, I have not been able to figure out what happened to the changes, this is where my progress hit a snag and may have not saved when I should have.

So, those of you that read even a portion of that story, thank you so much, and I want to apologize for what was not my best work and I’ve been working to make sure that doesn’t happen again, while I update it to a better form of the previous version.

Communication

Communication

Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

The most important part of this blog, what you take from it and how I can communicate with you, my readers.

Blog Update

The one area where I feel like I’ve keep up with my writing, though I did take the two weeks off after my dad and I were in the hospital. I did my best to keep up with the topics planned and give you fresh inspiration, thoughts, and inklings that come to me.

I want to say ‘thank you’ to all those who have supported me, commented, and liked my work. It means the world to me.

Connections

One of the places I felt I was slacking, but again, this break got me to really think about what I want out of it and I really want to provide you with helpful, inspiring, and even funny content to keep your day entertaining. So, I’ve got more content coming to my Social media channels. Care to see what I’ve been adding or want to stalk me? Links Below!

Facebook

Instagram

Pinterest

Twitter

Business

Business Update

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

New products

I’ve been thinking about adding products that would benefit you readers and writer alike. I’ve been hard at work creating digital products as well as items you can purchase. If you would like to stay up to date on what’s been added and when things are up and running, check out my newsletter where you’ll be updated on all thins I’m working on, products, writing prompts and more. Click here for more.

Video

Seriously, I didn’t realize how freakin’ hard it was to get on camera and actually talk without freezing up or stumbling over words. On the back burner until I’m ready – I’m chicken in front of a camera and refuse to wear makeup, but you’ll see me there eventually. I promise.

Other Items

Interests

Image by Lorri Lang from Pixabay

Educational Update

I’m always looking for books, email courses, online courses that will help me with my writing. I’ve taken a few (or are in the process of taking them), so that part is going well. I’ve got to catch up with one. I’m a bit behind, but I’m gaining momentum so I believe I’m doing well here.

Art/Music

Something I wanted back in my life was drawing and playing my guitar. Two things that brought me joy and I felt I excelled at. I’ve started a drawing challenge with my sister, so I’ve finally started drawing every day, but the guitar hasn’t made it into the plan… yet. It’s going to though. This is a promise I made to myself.

Sometimes you need something for yourself.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, you can plan all you want, but life will find a way to put you off track. It’s not what you can do to stop it; it’s how you handle it when it comes around. That break did wonders for me and I highly suggest taking one yourself if you’re feeling too overwhelmed.

Don’t forget, if I can get through all that, you can traverse what has been put in your path. Remember one step at a time. You’ll be over that mountain in no time!

Joy

Pinterest

Joy happens whenever we are even remotely happy. The difference between happiness and joy is that happiness is the emotional elevation of delight over time, while joy is happiness you feel in the moment.

A little more on the word Joy:

WIKI

  • A feeling of extreme happiness or cheerfulness, especially related to the acquisition or expectation of something good.
  • Anything that causes such a feeling.
  • Luck or success; a positive outcome.
  • The sign or exhibition of joy; gaiety; merriment; festivity.

Dictionary. com

  • The emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally good or satisfying; keen pleasure; elation
  • A source or cause of keen pleasure or delight; something or someone greatly valued or appreciated:
  • The expression or display of glad feeling; festive gaiety.
  • A state of happiness or felicity.

So, Now that we have the meaning of joy out of the way, let’s take  a look at some more aspects of the word and how you can find more of it!

Kinds of Joy:

So what kinds of joy is there? Well, I listed some I could think of here, enjoy!

Kinds of Joy

Image by xxolgaxx from Pixabay

Small~  Those joyful moments that are happening in the current moment.

Reminiscent ~ The delightful moments we remember with fondness and/or wish to pass down to our children and grandchildren. Examples: Rainbows, Fireworks, Ice cream with crunch/sprinkles.

Inner ~ Moments that come from within, those times when you make yourself happy, finding inspiration inside yourself.

Connective ~ The happy moments gained when in the presents or by interacting with others.

Outer ~ Moments of delight while out in the word, hiking in nature, deep in the city, experiencing what/where you love.

Large ~ Larger events/experiences that bring you pure delight.

Benefits of Joy:

There are always benefits to the emotions we feel and joy is no exception. So what are the benefits of joy? Let’s take a look:

Experience Joy
Image by Igor Link from Pixabay

Well, experiencing joy just plain feels good, which leads to other reactions such as laughing more often, experiencing even more joy, and really joy is just how we are most often. At least, I hope you are.

Having joy in your life, like so many other emotions creates a healthier you, you know all those endorphins and whatnot that are released? (I don’t get technical, so bare with me) Your body becomes healthier because you are in a good mood.

And speaking of being in a good mood, experiencing delight and happiness,  like smiling can attract you to more people which could benefit you if you were trying for a specific position or job. You never know what a little joy could show your potential employer or yourself for that matter.

There is nothing more important than the connections we make with others and your joy could inspire that, not to mention motivate others as well as yourself,  and form better connections with those around you. With just a little joy, others around you will see you as someone they can communicate with, someone they can trust, someone they look at and want to know what you’re taking to be so uplifting.

 

Finding Joy:

Now that we’ve talked about the benefits of joy, let’s move onto how you can find joy. In my opinion, you can find joy in any place and in any situation. (Well, maybe not every situation or place, but pretty close.)

Journeying
Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Health

Even your health can bring you joy, let me tell you how:

  • Self- Care ~ As with any area of your life, self care is important. Keeping yourself healthy and moving is going to bring you more joy than you could possibly realize. When you’re not feeling tired, breathless, or worn, you’ll realize that taking care of yourself will bring you more joy than that bowl of ice cream. Trust me, I know! Chocolate is my weakness.
  • State of Mind ~ Keeping your mind in the right state is also important and can bring you joy. When you’re not concerned about every little thing, your mind is free to let all the joy of the world enter and fill you up.
  • Focus on You ~ Take some time for yourself. Do something for yourself, whether it’s taking a walk, a nap, a long soak. Free your mind and relax your body, release the tensions of the day. Have some fun. You choose!

Emotional

Well, joy is an emotion, so use it!

  • No Waiting, No Worrying ~ Don’t wait for joy to fall in your lap, it’s not going to.  Go out and get it! Look for it wherever you are. Seek it in the things you see, the things you read, the events you participate in, even the smells. It’s up to you to see joy in things that may not seem like there’s much around. Trust me there is!
  • What Makes You Happy ~ People are always telling you to ‘Do what makes you happy’, well, I’m going to tell you the same. What are you waiting for? It’s never going to be the right time, get going and be happy! Draw, learn a new skill, rock climb, whatever it is, do it!
  • Appreciate the Small Things ~ Look around you, no, really look! See all those small things, yep, you know which ones I’m talking about. ALL OF THEM, even that half used eraser still has some use out of it. Appreciating even the tiniest things can cause joy. You could not have that eraser when you’re searching everywhere for one! Yes, you appreciate that small broken eraser because it was there when you really needed it and it’s also a memory because your son decided to pick it up and talk to you through it!

Connections

We connect with everyone around us, whether we are walking past them on the street, they are part of our group (family, friend, co-worker, etc.), or we see them on a screen, watching our favorite characters. We all connect with someone in some way…

  • Laugh ~ Everyone has that one person who makes us laugh, whether we are hanging with a friend, watching a particular movie, show, video, listening to a podcast… You get my point. When we need happiness, we have places we look first to cheer us up. Where do you go first?
  • Love ~ Love comes in many forms. If you love music, play it, sing it at the top of your lungs and jam out. Love movies, watch your favorites. If you love being around people, see if you can get together. Do what you love and see those you love to experience more joy.
  • Relationships ~ As I mentioned above, like right above, the relationships you have with people can bring you happiness. Just think about it. I bet you can think about that one person and they put a smile on your face. Who is that person and can you go see them to experience that thing called happiness that makes joy last longer?
  • Positivity ~ Find those things that create positivity within your life and keep them around. Now, I’m not you, so I can’t tell you what those things are, but you do, so go get them and make certain you see them every morning and whenever you need some joy in your life. Surround yourself with positive people and things (pictures/memories/etc) that create positivity in your life.

 

Create Joy:

You can find joy in many places and in many ways, but what about creating joy, and not just for you, for others too!

Painting
Image by Prashant Sharma from Pixabay
  • Plan ~ When you need joy, well, you never know when you’re going to need it so, gather those things that give you cheer and keep them close for when you need them. Keep that positivity with you at all times. Use a small journal to keep a list of things that bring you joy, add images, photos, phrases, anything that brings you joy and look at it when you’re feeling down.
  • Find Purpose ~ What are you passionate about? Where do you find inspiration? Go after them! Find your purpose! Enough said.
  • Accomplishments ~ Create a running list of your accomplishments, no matter how small, put them on there and see how long your list gets. Enjoy the feeling, knowing your rocking it!
  • Create a Story ~ Not just any story… You only get one life, one story, make it one you WANT to tell people about. Create, dream, achieve!
  • Challenge Yourself ~ Do those things you’ve always been wanting to try, challenge yourself to do something new; find, create, achieve joy in your life.
  • Create Something ~ That thing you’ve been putting off creating, do it. Make the time to get it done. Sometimes you have to literally create your joy!
  • Take a Leap of Faith ~ Don’t try to keep making things work that aren’t; let them go, find a new angle and make room for the new.
  • Create Inspiration ~ However you feel to take this is up to you; find your inner child and let it free, take a walk in nature, pray, create, explore, inspire.
  • Take the Bad with the Good ~ Yep, there are going to be times when you just need to cry, so cry. It’s okay, but don’t forget what you’ve learned here. Grab and hold those things that bring you joy and revisit them often.

 

Final Thoughts

We, as humans find and create joy in so many ways from revisiting our childhood and eating ice cream cones with crunch/sprinkles to creating things that inspire others; from watching fireworks and finding rainbows to reminiscing and collecting what makes us happy. Whatever it is that brings you joy, keep it close. You never know when you’re going to need a pick me up.

 

 

Summer Plans (You and Characters)

Summer is here and who doesn’t love sunny days, shorts and ice cream, right? Okay, I know there are some of you ‘crazy’ people out there that do love the cold and snow. I am definitely not one of them. I love being warm, not wearing heavy coats and ice cream on a hot day. Let’s talk about summer plans!

But let’s move on. It’s summer and I bet you have plans, whether it’s a vacation, continuing to work, or spending time with your family.

Summer

Summer is a time of freedom, especially for the younger ones. They look forward to the time away from school, vacations, doing (almost) nothing around the house and just plain having fun.

Beach Time

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

I know my children were ecstatic when they worked hard to get their school done early this year. (The benefits of homeschooling!) Though they still have chores, they are glad to have time to be themselves and so am I.

One thing I love to do is watch them as they create, play, or dream of what activities they want to experience next. The imagination and creativity they express is astounding when you allow it to flow. I’ve seen what happens when that is blocked from children and it’s a very sad thing to see. But we’re not here to talk about that, we’re here for Summer!

Our Summer Plans

One of our ‘traditions‘ and I say traditions because it’s something we do every year in the spring. We create a list of all the things we would like to do or experience this summer as a family. Anything anyone thinks of goes on the list no matter how big or small.

Camping

Image by Brahmsee from Pixabay

We then spend the summer trying to mark off all the things on that list.

This years list:

  • Visit The Domes
  • Go to the beach
  • Go Camping
  • Visit the Renaissance Faire (We go every year!)
  • Go to a Museum
  • Go to the zoo
  • Go to the Aquarium
  • Go on a picnic
  • Go to an ice cream shop
  • Have root beer floats
  • Play ‘Rainy Day Games’ (We each choose a board game and we play them all)
  • Bird Watching
  • Miniature Golfing
  • Disc golf
  • Bike Ride

We always have a few things that are a bit more expensive and some that may or may not cost anything at all. I’ll create a checklist that is visible to us all and hang it near our calendar. When we complete one of the activities, we check it off and at the end of the summer we look back to see all the things we’ve done as a family.

Writing

I can’t talk about the summer (or anything really) without talking about writing, and although I haven’t been my usual enthusiastic self – writing until my fingers fall off – this summer, I have not given up hope that I will return to that state sometime in the near future.

But to keep with the topic, have you ever thought of what some characters would do if they had a summer vacation? I don’t mean characters who are already on the big screens or whether the story took place in the summer, but if the character actually had a summer vacation from whatever they were doing at that moment, whether it’s a mission, job, career, or whatever. What would they do?

Teamwork

Image by rawpixel from Pixabay

What do you think some of your favorite characters would be doing to relax, have fun or just hang for longer than say a weeks time? Yes, anything can happen and we hope it does in the stories we read, but what about outside the story. If the characters were real, what do you honestly think they would be doing with the time off they were given?

Let me know the character(s), book and what you think they would be doing if they had an entire summer to do whatever they thought was fun!

Smile

The power of a smile can do wonders, but what can it really do?

Let’s look at it further…

WIKI

  • A facial expression comprised by flexing the muscles of both ends of one’s mouth, often showing the front teeth, without vocalisation, and in humans is a common involuntary or voluntary expression of happiness, pleasure, amusement or anxiety.
  • To have (a smile) on one’s face.
  • To express by smiling.
  •  To look cheerful and joyous; to have an appearance suited to excite joy.
  •  To be propitious or favourable; to countenance.

Dictionary.com

  •  To assume a facial expression indicating pleasure, favor, or amusement, but sometimes derision or scorn, characterized by an upturning of the corners of the mouth.
  • To regard with favor:
  • To assume or give (a smile, especially of a given kind
  • To express by a smile
  • The act or an instance of smiling; a smiling expression of the face.
  • Favor or kindly regard

 

So What are The Benefits of Smiling?

I bet you never thought that there were benefits to smiling, so it’s a good thing I’m here to inform you of just that very thing!

Smiling Makes You Look Younger

Well, aren’t we all striving to look younger? Here is an easy way (something else we are always looking for) to make you look younger. Just start smiling!

Laughter Benefits

Have you ever walked down the street and seen someone who just looked pissed at the world, you try to smile at them and hope that you’ve cheered them up just a little. I bet if you asked how old they were, you would think they were older than they really are. Those frowns cause your facial features to crease and turn down leaving those who see you to have the impression you are older than you actually are. So give a smile back and start looking younger!

Smiling Elevates Your Mood and Creates a Sense of Well-Being

So that’s the reason my husband is always making me smile. I have to agree with this. Smiling does, even just a little bit, lifts my mood when I’m down. Anyone else feel like that?

You’ve had a bad day, and you feel like nothing will make you happy, but your significant other, friend, sister, whoever tries their hardest to make you laugh? They get you to crack just a tiny smile and you end up giving them a jab for their efforts, but it did the job. You feel better and now you’re smiling. Mission accomplished.

Smiling Induces Pleasure in the Brain (More than Chocolate)

A study showed that one smile could generate the same level of stimulation in the brain as 2,000 chocolate bars. Now I’m not sure I believe that this to be true, I love my chocolate and it certainly will cheer me up better than a smile some days, but you never know.

beautiful-71493_640

Even a Forced Smile Can Lead to a Better Health

They  say that smiling can relieve stress, boost immune system, and lower blood pressure. I guess smiling could do those things if it’s capable of boosting your mood. It could calm you and allow your body to do as it was meant to accomplish if you’re no longer worrying over things happening at the moment.

So, take a break, smile and you may just improve your health. Hey, what easer way do you need to do that?

Smiling Makes You Seem Courteous, Likable, and Competent

This may seem like common sense, but smiling like so many other things in our lives is something I think most take for granted. You never really understand the action until you really think about it (or loose the ability to perform the action).

May Not Know

When you meet someone and you’re smiling you’re definitely more inviting than if you were frowning so it would only be reasonable that you would seem courteous and likable.

As for the competent part, I would think that would be related to posture and how you present yourself as to how competent you seem. People can see through a fake smile in a New York minute and if you really don’t want to be somewhere, others can always tell that by your manners. I’m just saying there are other factors at play for this one, but I’ll leave the final decision to you.

Why You Should Smile

Well, if they things I just mentioned don’t get you smiling, I don’t know what will. You are a hard shell to crack. Just kidding!

Along with the reasons above, smiling creates a more inviting atmosphere around you. As I mentioned, we as humans are social creatures and smiling tells others that you are approachable. No one wants to talk to someone who looks like they haven’t smiled or had a happy moment in 30 years. There are people like that, you know you’ve seen them.

Walking down the street, you almost void eye contact in the hopes you don’t catch their negative atmosphere or worse, makes them even more upset because you’re happy and they’re not.

Laughter

Other than the view others would have of you, smiling for yourself is just as powerful. You create happiness with everything you do, even when you’ve had a bad day, I bet you can think of something that would make you smile. Your kids playing, your furbabies, your significant other, the memories we have and the times we’ve spent with them cause you to crack a smile.

So remember, there is always something to smile about. We’ve recently loss one of our kitties. It was a strange day, I woke before either of my kids to find that he passed away during the night. He was sick, and we were sad, but a few days later we were talking and reminiscing of the times we had with that little firecracker of a cat. He was such a joy to have in our lives, (no matter how annoying his tendencies were). It shows that we are able to create happiness even through dark times.

What a Smile Can be Used For

We use smiles for many different reasons, but what are they?

bokeh-2594745_640

We use smiles in greetings, to show affection, to cheer the broken hearted, and to reminisce of times past. We use them to communicate our feelings and our confidence.

What can you think of that you use a smile for?

How a Smile can Inspire

Smiles are the universal communicator of happiness and joy. Why do you think the Mona Lisa has been so memorable? It wasn’t just the artist, who is renowned for his work, but her smile has gone down in history. It’s the first thing you think of when you think of the Mona Lisa.

girl-4190153_640

Smiles can inspire and encourage others from images to real life. People take pictures daily and in each one the subjects (or a majority of them, there is always that one person who refuses to cooperate) are smiling. As they look back on that photo, they don’t want to remember a time that wasn’t happy, joyous or entertaining.

A smile is a powerful tool, one you always have in your arsenal ready to be used whenever you need. It creates happiness just by the action of using it. What could be more powerful than that?

How do you use your smile to encourage others? How has a smile encouraged you?

Character/Story Communication

What is Story Communication or even Character communication, you may be asking yourself, well, I’m going to show you what I’ve found, so keep reading.

What is Story Communication?

Story communication is the connection you get from the story itself. The deep level, overall, feeling of completeness once you’ve finished a good story. It’s how the words resinates with you as the reader. Have you ever read a story and when you were finished, you were completely devastated that it was over? Or completely satisfied by the last words finishing the tale? That’s story communication; it’s how the story itself, as a whole resonates with you, the reader, when you throughly absorbed every last part of the story.

Story Communication

Image by Fathromi Ramdlon from Pixabay

… And Character Communication?

As with story communication, character communication is the connections you have with the characters. When you envision the story unfolding in your mind with the way the characters talk, act, and move throughout the story, it’s the way you feel about the characters within the story. The hatred, yet understanding of the villain; the way you root for the main character and love their love interest as much as they do. It’s the feeling of going on their journey along with them.

That connection is the author communicating with you on such a deep level that you are able to envision yourself within the world they created. You root for or against each character and even relate to those of the secondary ones who pop in every now and then to impart wisdom or provide comic relief.

Why is it Essential?

The most effective way to engage and resonate with your readers is through storytelling. What better way than to create a story so memorable, you create engagement within your readers? That is one of the goals of a writer, to have your readers so enthralled and invested into the characters and story that they want more. If you create a story so engaging, your readers will feel just a strongly as you do about the characters and the story itself.

Engage Your readers

Image by 【中文ID】愚木混株 【ins-ID】cdd20 from Pixabay

When one creates a story from the heart, whether that’s romance, horror, mystery or adventure, your readers have no choice but to love what your write.

Stories are Used To…

As I’ve written in  my post ‘What Is A Story?’ stories are produced by the imagination of the writer for entertainment, encouragement, a way to escape, but also as a way to pass down history, teach morals, create and continue traditions, and more.

Imagination

Image by Виктория Бородинова from Pixabay

It’s how we got to where we are today. Families tell them when they’re together to remember the good time, or the bad, to reminisce about the battles won and the ones lost. They create memories and that’s the most important part of stories.

Stories as a Tool to Influence

Stories are a great took to influence and encourage others. Writers use their talents to create words and phrases, even situations that encourage, inspire, motivate and help others in any aspect of their lives. It’s a way to let others know that they are not alone, that others have experienced exactly as they have/are experiencing.

Communication

Image by Yuri_B from Pixabay

There is no better feeling than knowing someone else has experienced the same problems you have and have survived/overcame those same obstacles. Each one of us is living our own story and as the main character in that story, we are going through our own ups and downs, trials and hurdles, obstacles and triumphs. There are just those times when you need to know there is someone else who’s experienced what you are going through and came out of it stronger from the experience.

When we open up by sharing, it creates a vulnerability that allows for a deeper connection with another and that’s what’s important.

We use stories to inspire, encourage, escape and pleasure. How do you use stories? 

May’s Writing Theme: Communication

This month’s theme is about communication; business communication and story communication. There are many types of communication out there and some can cause more problems than others.

What types of communication are you using within your business and your stories? Print, Texts, Verbal, Face to face, etc. What troubles are you having with them and have you thought or have you fixed those problems so things run as smooth as possible.

communication

Example: I have been using Trello to keep myself organized even with my contacts, but I do tend to use messenger as it is one of the most perferred methods of communication by those I contact. 

What communication avenues are you using and are you having any issues with them? What are you doing to try to fix the problem?