10 Ways to Improve Your Listening Skills

March was International Listening Awareness Month but every month is a good time to check how well you listen. What with the endless supply of texts messages, abbreviations and acronyms we use to communicate, it's no wonder our listening skills fall short. Listening is the process of receiving, constructing meaning from and responding to spoken and/or nonverbal messages. In the early years of marriage, my husband often accused me of not listening. Of course, I denied, explained and defended my listening skills repeatedly.  Fortunately, I learned that hearing is not the same as fully listening. According to the International Listening Association, only about 50% of what we hear is retained immediately after we hear it and only … [Read more...]

Quotes and other Life Lessons

For years, I’ve subscribed to Readers Digest. I especially enjoy the courageous and inspiring stories, adventures, healthy living tips, jokes and quotes. I have quite a collection of inspirational quotes I’ve gathered over the years from a variety of other sources. Here are some of my favorites: “Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – George Bernard Shaw Many times I’ve heard people say things like, “I’ve just got to find out what I want to do with my life” or “I need to find out how to … [fill in the blank] Your life is not about “finding” anything. Nothing is lost! You already have everything within you that you need to life an abundant and fulfilling life. What I understand about this quote is that … [Read more...]

Tap Into Your Inner Wizard to Overcome Fear and Doubt

You might wish you had enough courage live authentically, write a best selling novel or live with purpose and authority. You might long for loving, fulfilling relationships with your partner, family and friends.  Or you think you don't know the answers to the probing questions you have. The answers you're looking for already within you. You already have the intelligence,  courage and confidence to achieve your hearts desire. But doubt and fear have you stuck so that you can't find your way back to the happiness and success you desire. No matter what other dreams you have, being happy is a dream most people share. Yet, a lot of people are “unhappy”, given up on their dreams, constantly overwhelmed, confused and lack the strength … [Read more...]

10 Inspirational Tips to Give Yourself a Boost

  Most of us can use a little push, from time to time, to help us shift our mood and lift our spirits when we're bored, drained, and sluggish. While your energy level might be low and you feel unmotivated, you don't have to stay that way! Here are some easy tips you can follow  to give yourself a boost to inspire, encourage and rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit: Start a gratitude journal. Write down 5 things you are grateful for each day.  Showing appreciation for the things you already have keeps you from dwelling on lack and scarcity. Try out a new hairdo – nothing perks you up like a new “do" to uplift your spirits Listen to some up-tempo music – this is not the time for ballads and blues – you want … [Read more...]

How Problems, Patterns and Perceptions Influence Your Behaviors

If you’re anything like a lot of people, you’ve had your share of problems. And, that could be anything from a pesky leaky faucet to totaling your new car. In the book, Power is Within You, written by the wise Louise Hays, she talks about how the problems we have with our cars may suggest some inner issue that we have not faced.  For example, if  you’re feeling stuck and can’t seem to move forward, that feeling might show up in the form of a flat tire preventing you from getting to your destination. And, just as you would call your local auto club or a friend to fix your tire, you must call on your inner reserves and delve deep into the patterns and perceptions you embrace to repair the irrational beliefs that are keeping you … [Read more...]

Create Memorable Holiday Moments

The past six weeks have been like a whirlwind that keeps gathering speed. First, we had a major snowstorm the last week of October that knocked out power for over a week.  And before I could fully recoup from that, I found myself in the throes of preparing for Thanksgiving. And, now Christmas is just a few days away!!! Although, over the years I’ve found ways to cut down on all the hoopla of shopping, planning and cooking, I still sometimes find myself with more to do than I have energy or time for. Have you ever felt like that? Earlier I shared with you tips to make your holiday stress free. And, if you haven’t already gotten your audio of 30 Tips in 30 Minutes for Making Your Holidays Stress-Free, Budget-Friendly and Loaded … [Read more...]

Holiday Traditions, Rituals and Habits

Holiday Traditions, rituals and habits are staples of our American culture.  But just because your mom or grandmother always did things a certain way doesn’t mean you have to unless you really want to. In my family, our holiday traditions are wide ranging. Pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving is as traditional as it gets but we’re not exactly the “pumpkin pie” kind of family.  We might have the traditional turkey at Thanksgiving or we might have something non traditional like lobster for dinner depending on our mood. We might open our presents or Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  We might invite guests for a sit down dinner or host an open house during the holidays.  Maybe, your holiday traditions in your family include y volunteering to serve … [Read more...]

Holiday Gift Giving Tips

Most of us are feeling some of the effects of downed economy. However, that doesn't mean you have to bust the budget to give gifts to those you care about. After my colleague, Dr. Flora Brown and I finished creating an audio where we share some useful and practical holiday gift-giving, budget friendly tips, I remembered some other tips to share with you. If you haven't already picked up you free gift - "30 Tips in 30 Minutes for Making Your Holidays Stress Free, Budget-Friendly and Loaded with Remarkable Memories",  click here to get your free audio download now! Most of the ideas here are less than twenty dollars and can be ordered on line or purchased locally. They are equally appropriate for both men and women. In the last few … [Read more...]

Can You Show More Gratitude?

    You can never run out of things to be grateful for. So many times we take everyday things for granted - like our cell phone connection, lighting and heat for our homes, the Internet, TV, microwaves, our games and global connections. Recently, we had a major power outage in our town.  Our home was without power for seven days. For some folk the outage lasted longer. Spending two nights in a cold dark house with a fireplace for warmth and four nights in an emergency shelter was a stark reminder for me to be more conscious of the things I have to be grateful for. It's easy to be grateful when you receive a tangible gift or for food, clothes, shelter but what about the everyday things that we so easily take for granted … [Read more...]

Show Your Appreciation in 10 Simple Ways

  Showing appreciation is about more than saying the perfunctory "thank you" when  someone does a good deed for us.  Many times, we neglect to tell the people who enrich our lives just how we feel about the things they do or say and that create a richer experience for us such as being a good friend or making us laugh. We take so much for granted that we may not pay that much attention to the daily things we can do to light up someone else's life.  As the wise poet, Maya Angelou says, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” You can start now to "make someone's day" by not only noticing their good deeds but also showing … [Read more...]