Its the most wonderful time of the year!! I just love the feeling of Fall. The leaves, the colors, the chill in the air, the warming of most hearts. People are generous, they smile more. It’s just something about this time of year, actually almost everything about it fills my heart with love. We have a traditional prayer before we eat and we say what we are thankful for. This year I wanted the boys to say something they want to see happen in the coming year that they would be grateful for. That ended up making my heart completely full!! Although my boys are older for the most part, 25, 19, and 12, they love our family life. They always say in comparison to their friends, they wouldn’t have it any other way. That’s amazing!! And they prayed for sick and lost loved ones and thanked God for moving in our family and a friend’s baby being born today. That’s what Thanksgiving is all about for me. Love overflowing and not forgetting about others that may not be feeling the way you are. I pray that everyone that reads this is captured by love and feels an overwhelming amount of gratitude for what you have as you look forward to what is to come. Gratitude and acceptance is what leads us to healing. Until we accept and feel grateful for what we have, nothing will motivate us to move forward to happiness. I want that for my boys. I try to teach them to be humble and grateful because what they do have can be taken away. I also don’t mind them being happy about what they have. We should not have to minimize being happy about what we have because someone may not have it. Just be grateful…For whatever you have. Things can be way different, in either direction, so learning to accept it all and be grateful will make everything look different. Your attitude changes and you are motivated for more of the same. I am grateful for my family and friends and I look forward to what loving them all will bring to my life………
Happy Thanksgiving to you!!!!
I cannot tell you how many bright ideas that I have had that have yet to pass the starting position. I am honestly quite busy but I know that I have the time to put more than a thought and a journal entry into a few of those ideas. I admit that I try to put as many things on my plate as I can so that I stay busy and it can make a girl crazy! The things that I do attempt get finished, it is just that I am completely worn out after them and I have little time for anything else. Time management and learning to say no are going to be at the top of my list for the New Year, that is for sure.
I have a new planner on the way and goals that I have set for this year are going to see me as a more organized and accomplished being (giggles from excitement). I have been using my meditation and quiet time to map out a vision board and this girl is going to see plenty of good in the coming year. How am I getting there? What is the plan? I am evaluating my past attempts and experiences and making the changes from there. I have learned a lot from previous choices and I am ready to make my goals a reality. Let me share with you what I have learned…
- Enjoy what you are doing or trying to do. It sounds simple enough but many of us end up spending most of our day doing things that we do not enjoy. Why do we do that? When you have an idea….for anything at all, you are more than likely going to find yourself hitting a few dead ends. That doesn’t mean that you need to quit altogether and go back to doing what you are comfortable with. We just have to step back and find another way to get there. Everything that we do will not always go well all of the time; we just have to love the process of getting to where we want to go as much as finally getting there.
- Be in love or fall in love with your ideas/goals/dreams. You know what they are! The things that I am working on are definitely things I am passionate about. You know, those things that make you so excited you can burst from the inside when you are thinking about them or make you so full you want to cry when you visualize the moment you realize you did it. They are part of your purpose and they are the things that make the rest of your life a little easier to deal with. The thought of what that idea/goal/dream can be should give you the motivation to push forward and forget about quitting until you get there.
- Mind your budget. Depending on your idea, this budget has the potential to get out of control. Budgets are crucial and I work on doing one for everything…sometimes. There are times when I hit the mark and others, not so much. Seeing a budget helps us to measure our goals, making them more tangible. Numbers help us to see if and when those ideas can become a reality with what we have on hand. If you don’t see enough resources, you can be creative with what you have before looking for outside sources. If you are like me, you want to do things yourself, which is another thing that I learned about.
- “No man is an island”. We know that saying and for some of us, we are working on believing that (my hand raised). It is very rare that we have all that we need within ourselves to accomplish our goals. We need help! And so what if others know we cannot do it alone. We have to network. There are few things that we can do without meeting others who have been there so that we see those dreams of ours as a reality. Talk to people that are where you want to be or read about their journeys. For the most part, there is a person or a group that is already doing something similar to what you are trying to do and not getting paid for it. Join them and bring value to the people that you are meeting with. If you don’t find that group, create it.
- Prepare yourself for change. I am not one of those people who have to see things done the same way every time. I am very spontaneous and flexible. I think that is part of why I do not get worked up when things do not work out. It can be frustrating, don’t get me wrong, but it will not completely knock me out. Embracing change is not a strong point for many but it can save anyone a lot of stress if they learned how. It is best to not get fixed on things happening one way. A new way of thinking or doing things can be refreshing and can set things on a greater path than you originally planned.
- Tell the world! This one is huge for me because I am not good at this one. I am a quiet person when it comes to sharing who I am and what I am doing. I have no idea why I am such a private person (yet I started a blog, right). Maybe it is because I have problems trusting that the people I know will actually support a project I have or maybe I have a problem with rejection. I am not sure and I do have issues with both of those at times. I am learning that I have to go outside of my circle for authentic support and be bold and confident in what I am doing. If I don’t believe in it, I cannot convince anyone else to. I know that I have to be ready for all types of feedback and advice and I am. I also know how to weed out the good from the bad and keep it moving. Feedback is important for a lot things that happen in our lives but we cannot get caught up in the opinions of others. We also have to know that we should not worry about things being perfect, nothing really is. We just have to be careful not to just share any ol’ thing with the world. We have to give our best at the time and work on improving things from there.
Whatever it is that you are planning on trying or doing in the upcoming year, do it! Do it afraid. Do it with boldness…just do it! If you are like me, you may be tired of creeping your way to the place you want to be. Tired of letting someone’s opinion make you back away from the idea. Get in your quiet place and make a plan, set a goal, journal your dream. Get ready to have the time of your life on a journey to everything that you want to do/be. Celebrate yourself with every small accomplishment along the way. Love on yourself with every little failure as well. Write it down…make it plain…get it done!
I truly do love this time of year! I love the weather because I get to wear my cute boots and scarves. I love the sales, music, and the friendly faces too. Right next to the people with those friendly faces, are the ones who absolutely dread the holiday…yet, they still get out there with everyone else. Why?!!! I do not get that! Looking all irritated because they feel like they have to run up a credit card bill and empty out their accounts to make someone they love semi-happy. I refuse to drive myself crazy trying to give everyone everything on their list, and do it all in 30 days. We all know that the Christmas season does not shift around…meaning, it comes every year at the same time! The prices are not always something to celebrate at this time because many stores raise their prices so that you will pay the real price after you get your “60%” off. We swipe those cards and give the credit card companies an opportunity to make a lot more money off of us if we pay the minimum balance, so where are we saving?
I have enough bills to deal with throughout the year so I am mindful of this time of year and the “bargains” it may bring. I would like to enjoy the season and still be on good financial footing when the new year begins. I have been reading some about finance and budgeting and I have been using some new ways to keep my stress level down and my wallet balanced during heavy spending times, including the summer, school, vacations, birthdays and Christmas.
- Set a budget and stick to it! I used to buy things just because I could and it would end up being something that would probably not be used, it was just on sale. Am I the only one? We do not need to impress others with our ability to create debt. Look at your finances and create a budget that gives you air to breath. If you need someone to help you stay accountable to your spending, get someone!
- If you think you need to, earn some extra cash. There are plenty stores that hire for the holiday season so get out there and do what you need to in order to help your family have a memorable Christmas and not put any significant dents in your main income. You can always take on more hours at your present job if you do not want to take on another job. I found a mobile app where you can do surveys and make extra money as well, Swagbucks. There is also Field Agent. With them, you go around scanning items in stores that you frequent and make money for each scan. It really does work and has plenty of positive reviews. Check them out!
- Sell things that you have and do not need, use or want. Get rid of it! Go ahead. It is taking up space and you can potentially make money off of it. I am currently giving away purses (you have no idea how hard that is) and maybe a few pairs of shoes. Someone is probably looking for what you don’t need anymore. I see a lot of people selling things on Facebook yard sales and other places. You never know what you can make and be able to purchase gifts for the family without having to create more debt.
- Be creative with your gifts. Think about the people you want to purchase gifts for. They are not all the same and some of them already have too many scarves, ties, and pajamas at this point. You can always make something unique or plan an excursion that they would appreciate. I coupon so some of my loved ones may be getting gift baskets with practical everyday things that they can use. That saves them money and the time it takes to shop for the items. Be creative and “out of the box”; most of the time those gifts turn out to be the best and most memorable ones.
- Pay your bills ASAP! If you did have to use credit cards, try to pay the debt off as quick as you can. The longer you sit on it, the more interest builds and that $9.99 sweater you purchased will really end up being a whole lot more depending on your rate. I know it may be hard to do, but just try not to use them at all. If you have no choice, budget your spending on them. I do not really use mine much because the plan is to be credit card debt free by the end of next year and it is a reality for me because I only have one to go!
This is the time of year to show love to our families and also strangers. Trying to make it through the holiday season without significant debt can be hard, but with careful planning and sacrifice, we just might be able to do it. Giving gifts at Christmas does not have to sneak up on us. I know that it’s coming so planning throughout the year allows a little less stress and gives time to actually enjoy the season and the reason for it. Happy Birthday Jesus!