Free for the Future

“I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.”
Michelangelo

Do you feel like you’re stuck inside a marble block, just waiting to be freed?  It’s tough to feel this way, and it can really impact all areas of your life.  It can be especially scary or difficult if you don’t know how to free yourself.  Here are some tips to help you get started.

Be creative: this month we’ve been talking about creativity and all the benefits it has for your life.  Freedom is definitely one of them.  If you’re feeling frustrated, it may be hard to find your muse and be creative, so it would be the perfect time to take a class or do a done-for-you creative project.  No, these aren’t the same as doing your own creative thing, but they can free up your creative spirit to help you break through the tough stuff.

Exercise: Not at the gym, mind you, but outside.  Sometimes all it takes is a little interaction with nature to get your spirit back.  Go for a walk in a park, down the street or explore a townhouse community.  Jog around your neighborhood or take a hike up a mountain.  Go swimming or canoeing in a lake.

Try something new: maybe you’re feeling stuck because you do the same thing day in and day out with the same people in the same places.  Take a different route to work, meet somewhere else for coffee with a friend, try new foods for dinner, trade cars with your partner or spouse for the day, move your home office around, or watch a different TV show.

If these three ideas can’t get you re-started, it may be time to look at making some bigger changes.  A new job, new friends, or move to a new city or state perhaps.  Many good things start with a big change.

Where will you start this week to break through?

Thoughtfully Healthy

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells.  Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope.  Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.” Theodore Geisel

Theodore Geisel has done something few have done well: captured the world’s attention with words.  The magic with which they float around the pages of his books is incredible.  Countless movies and other authors have used his work as inspiration.  Who is this smart man? Why Dr. Seuss of course!

Reading Dr. Seuss’s books is one of the more challenging things your brain will experience.  They’re tons of fun, but the words can really get your tongue into a twist. But one of the things I love most about Seuss’s books is that they’re all full of imagination.  As children we spend countless hours playing make-believe with princesses, aliens, superheros and wild creatures, but when we become adults, many of us “turn off” the part of our brain that does the imagining.  This basically means that we stop using part of our brain!  Those of us who have creative hobbies like crafting or sculpting help to keep those connections going in our brain.

If you’ve got a challenge in your life, or something you can’t figure out, do something that takes imagination, fantasy or, as Geisel said, makes life seem like you’re looking at it through the wrong end of a telescope.  Look at that challenge upside-down, backwards, inside out, with different people involved and imagine all possible outcomes.  Don’t limit yourself to only what reality has to offer.  Instead, take some time to laugh at life and look at challenges with a fresh perspective. Not only will you be a stronger, smarter, happier person, you’ll also get through future challenges easier.  Of course, keep a few Dr. Seuss books around to help get those brain cells moving!

What about you?  Are you stuck up against a challenge and cant get through?  Maybe the answer is to go over, under, around or even turn around away from the challenge.  I’d love to help you get a fresh perspective on your challenge, contact me through my Fresh Perspectives website.

Brighter Days

What do you do when you’re having a tough day?  One great thing you can do is listen to inspirational music and speakers.  Lately I’ve been listening to “Move” by MercyMe (check out the video here).

The song starts off with these lyrics:

“I’m not about to give up
Because I heard you say
There’s gonna be brighter days
There’s gonna be brighter days
I wont stop, Ill keep my head up
No, I’m not here to stay
There’s gonna be brighter days
There’s gonna be brighter days…”

I’m certainly ready for brighter days, I don’t know about you.  The good news is that the summer isn’t over yet and there’s still time to prepare for the fall and the rest of your life, as well as enjoy the rest of the summer.  It’s good to take a break sometimes and find out where you stand in life.  Don’t ever let anyone tell you you don’t have choices in life, because no matter what your situation, you have choices, choices that will bring you to brighter days.

What brighter days are you looking for?  I know I’m looking to be less tired, more energized, and more ready to experience all the amazing opportunities that life gives me.  I’d love to support you in your journey for better things, share your hopes below.

2011 in Words-Creativity

This month we’ve been focusing on creativity.  Why?  Because creativity an essential aspect of life, and without it, not only would life be boring, I dare say life would be very uniform and ordinary.  Creativity adds a depth and spice to life that nothing else can add.

There are 4 essential aspects to creativity; process, product, person and place.  Each of these is must be aligned in order for creativity to happen.

Process:
We’ve each got our little quirks and habits that help us get in the grove.  Maybe you listen to music, maybe you play a card game, maybe you stretch, maybe you eat something.  I’m always looking for new ideas and creativity starters to get my mind going.

Product:
There’s always a finished product when it comes to creativity.  Maybe your finished product this month will turn become part of another finished product next year, but it was still a finished project at some time.  Your creativity is constantly evolving and changing and growing, so your products should as well.

Person:
You’ve got to be personally involved in something for it to be creative.  Things don’t just “happen” creatively.  Maybe you stumbled onto something or accidentally came up with a great idea, but no matter what, someone was involved somewhere and sometime.

Place:
I’m most inspired at the beach.  Maybe you’re more of a city person.  I can be at the most beautiful canyon and feel absolutely nothing but you may be inspired to write a whole novel or paint a series of pictures based on that canyon.  Your surroundings can make or break your creativity.

What about you this week?  Which  of the 4 P’s did you struggle with most?

The Spirit of Amelia Earhart

This week we’re celebrating the life of someone very special, Amelia Earhart.  Born on July 24, this woman went on to change the world for both women and aviation.   Her spirit, determination and passion have inspired generations following her life.

When I checked out her biography this week, what inspired me most was “the moment:”

“It wasn’t until Earhart attended a stunt-flying exhibition, almost a decade later, that she became seriously interested in aviation. A pilot spotted Earhart and her friend, who were watching from an isolated clearing, and dove at them. “I am sure he said to himself, ‘Watch me make them scamper,'” she said. Earhart, who felt a mixture of fear and pleasure, stood her ground. As the plane swooped by, something inside her awakened. “I did not understand it at the time,” she said, “but I believe that little red airplane said something to me as it swished by.””

Have you had an awakening?  A moment when your whole body seemed to feel alive, almost humming with intensity?  It’s moments like this that everyone hopes for in their life, and moments that make life worth living.  These moments often can show you your purpose or passion in life.

Amelia could have done many things with her life, but her choice was to pursue flying.  I’m sure that she received more than her fair share of criticism and did a lot of her initial planning in secret because she knew she was going against the flow.  Don’t be afraid to pursue your dreams, taking it slow and secret initially, telling only the people who will support you.  But when the time is right, seize the moment and follow the vision set before you by Amelia.

What have you started?  What big dreams are you following?  I’d love to support you as you follow your vision, share your dreams below.

Beautiful or Bypassed?

Psalm 19:1 “The heavens proclaim the glory of God.  The skies display his craftsmanship.”

Maybe you’ve had as tough a week as I.  I think we’ve both missed something this week, the beauty that is the life God created.   It’s amazing how many of us totally miss the bigger, more beautiful picture of life.  I’d love for you to join me in my quest for beauty this week. I’ll be sharing about it on Twitter.  I’m intentionally taking the time to find and share beauty this week because I’m tired of being tired and tired of missing out on life.

What about you?  Will you join me?  I’d love for you to share the beautiful discoveries you make in life this week with me on Twitter.  Just hit the “reply” link under the tweet I share that day with the hashtag #beauty.

Growing Through Unhappiness

Last weekend I sat down to re-evaluate my business and the direction it’s going in.  Why?  Because I wanted to make sure that my business and I agreed, that we were on the same page and that it met the needs of the people I’ve met and been working with.  The same is true for life.  It’s good to sit down and think about what’s going on in your life every so often.

Start by asking yourself if nothing changed would you be happy in 6 months?

Second, are you happy now?

If you answered no to either question, then it’s time to discover what is causing the unhappiness in your life.   Are you unhappy because you’re not fulfilling your purpose, have the wrong kinds of people in your life or because you’ve made some less than stellar choices?  If you’re worried that you’ll always be unhappy, stop.  I’m positive that life was meant to be enjoyed and not lived through unhappily.

Once you’ve determined what makes you unhappy, you need to decide if anything would make you happy.  If you can’t think of anything that would make you happy, the first thing you need to do is change your attitude.  Why? Because happiness starts internally. And, your happiness, or at least your attitude that you can be happy in life, is essential to getting through any challenges that cross your path.

If your attitude isn’t part of the problem and you can think of things that would make you happy, it’s time to make some plans and set some goals for how to make changes in your life so you can achieve that happiness.

Then take some time for yourself and live happily.  Do the things that make you happy, things that keep you balanced, centered and focused so that when you have to do something you don’t particularly enjoy, you’ll be able to get through and hopefully do it well.

What about you?  Are you happy today or are you struggling.  I’d love to hear where your heart stands on this, feel free to share below.