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The gift Mom gave

Mother’s Day can be challenging for those who grew up without their Mom, or lost their Mom as adults. I lost mine tragically to suicide when I was only 15. Yet there doesn’t seem to be an adequate way to acknowledge the memory in the sea of Hallmark moments or gift-buying ideas. If Mother’s Day causes you the blues, the best solution is to create your own moment. Moms give the greatest gift that is possible: LIFE. Regardless of any familial circumstances, she was the vessel that allows you to grow, develop, and evolve to create your own experiences and memories. So what better way than to honor Mom than by living your best life, having no regrets, and making each moment matter. I believe that’s what she would have really wanted for you. So if you have your own kids, be a great Mom to them. If you are childless, celebrate and enjoy the gift of life in your own unique way. Make the memory of your Mom’s gift to you really matter this Mother’s Day and forward on.

#Thrive in 2019

Life always moves forward regardless of circumstances.  Even if you become stuck and are trying to figure out a solution, life lives on. And sometimes the best solutions are patience and time.  Patience to allow the universe to align in your favor and time to allow the work to transpire.

But when you are in the thick of it, it is easier said than done. No one wants to be stuck, feeling emotionally, mentally or physically trapped without answers. It’s a painful, lonely and gut-wrenching experience.

I know. This same feeling has intermittently disrupted my life for 38 years since when my Mom passed in my teen years, and I felt abandoned, unloved and rejected by my family. I’ve been stuck more times than I care to remember trying to navigate life. Sometimes because of circumstances, bad timing or just plain, poor decisions. 

But what has been constant in all my travails is my ability to learn, grow, recover and renew.  So, when it was time for me to again reflect, plan and identify my yearly guide word, I knew “THRIVE” was my word.

Thrive (verb) \ˈthrīv \

1: to grow vigorously FLOURISH

2to gain in wealth or possessions PROSPER

3to progress toward or realize a goal despite or because of circumstances

I remember when I was going through an especially difficult hardship a few years back and feeling depressed, a woman who hired me to do freelance writing said, “you are thriving; you are making it, and that’s something to be proud about.” And more recently, I had a college friend tell me that I make rebounding seem easy, so others can’t see or don’t understand my struggle.”  In both those scenarios, I was so caught up in how I felt or what it looked like, I didn’t even see that I was indeed moving forward and thriving in my life at the age of 53. As my peers are winding down, I’m gearing up and thriving, looking youthful and feeling good. That’s a true blessing and one that should not be taken for granted.

Me at work holiday dinner, South City Kitchen, Midtown Atlanta; December 2018. Photo by co-worker.

So even though it never feels easy or fun to me because I’m living it out, my heart chooses to intentionally thrive in all areas of my life in 2019. My #Dream2018 efforts won’t go to waste because patience and time are on my side. As a matter of fact, several of my dreams began to manifest last year, and I look forward to seeing them thrive in 2019.

#oneword365 #nevergiveup #stayfocused #believeinyourself#

What’s your word for 2019? Pick one and find your tribe at Let’s keep life simple and enjoy every moment!!!

Commit To It Or Lose It Forever

ID31140737 © Tim Hester |

I recently read a quote attributed to novelist Will Self that reads “Always carry a notebook. And I mean always. The short-term memory only retains information for three minutes; unless it is committed to paper you can lose an idea for ever.” I couldn’t agree more with Mr. Self, having suffered through recall of ideas I thought I would remember. If you are an individual with a voracious aptitude for generating ideas, consider starting an idea journal. It may be an idea on how to prepare a meal better, to improve a process, for a business product, starting a business or writing a short story or novel. There is no limit to the number and types of ideas that you generate. Some will be zany, some will be brilliant, some half-baked; it doesn’t really matter as long as you capture the moment for yourself. For 2016, my mantra is “freeing ideas onto paper,” and here are three reasons I encourage you to do the same:

Brainstorm at your pace. In most instances, journal writing is a daily practice. But let’s be real, ideas and thoughts shouldn’t be forced but more organic and intuitive born. When you journal ideas, you have the ability to brainstorm and more fully develop the idea as you think through it over time. Having an idea journal allows you the convenience to revisit your thoughts and make revisions or move in a completely different direction.

May inspire future action. Timing is everything. Just because an idea manifests into your consciousness doesn’t mean that it’s time to take immediate action (or take action at all). However, if write it down, it may be the catalyst you need when the opportunity presents itself for you to act.

Shows the power of potential. When life takes a turn, it can be challenging to find your bearing. With a bevy of written ideas, it can serve as a go-to source and reminder of potential for past creativity and inventiveness to give you that boost you need to continue moving forward.

Now that you realize there is value in writing your ideas through a journal process, the next step is to take action. There are many ways that you can journal, you can write it in a physical or online journal (my favorite is a journal book), audio record, or videotape yourself. All of these options can be found using pre-installed apps on your smartphone, like Notes, Voice Recorder, and Camera video feature. And if you audio record or video tape, consider hiring a transcriptionist to turn your verbal thoughts into words onto paper.

The point is to pick what works best for your lifestyle and just begin. The best way that you can endeavor to free your ideas and own your magnificence is to begin somewhere other than your memory, and what better way than in your own written words.