Create a vision for your future

“So relaxing and inspiring”

“Fun…made me remember things that I always wanted to do, but forgot about them!”

“Wow, fun and surprising, new ideas popped up.”

Wishful Thinking Women were busy capturing their dreams on vision boards at a gathering earlier this week. I have created many over the years.  They have never failed to inspire me, and I believe they have helped my future far exceed my dreams.

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VB 2017 April (2)

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The “best” vision board is the one you create for yourself! Get busy this weekend capturing your future. It’s easy – all you need is poster board, magazines, scissors, glue and your dreams!

Think about how you want your life to look and feel – and then cut and paste your vision. Keeping it front and center in your life over the next few weeks, month or years will increase the likelihood that your dreams will come true – all it takes is you!

Wishful Thinking Works Vision Boarding tips:

  1. Gather all of your supplies in one place – make sure you have room to spread out.  A variety of magazines works best, but even if you only have a few, go for it.
  2. Set the mood. Pour yourself a glass of wine or a cup of tea, play the music of your choice – this is a great time for new age or classical, but go with what works best for you.
  3. Sit quietly for a moment and take some deep breaths. Say a few positive, comforting phrases to yourself such as:.  “The future of my dreams is waiting for me.”  “How do I want it to look and feel?”  “I am excited about what lies ahead for me.”
  4. And, then go for it! Don’t censor yourself. If something catches your eye, cut it out. You can figure out how it “fits” later.
  5. Once you have a big stack of pictures and words, begin arraigning them on your board. (Dollar Stores sell the thicker foam core poster board for only $1!
  6. Toss anything you cut out that no longer appeals to you – no regrets – we are creating a future that excites and delights you! You are in charge.
  7. Begin gluing the pieces down when you like the arrangement. Nothing has to be perfect here, have fun with it. (You can always create a new board, in fact I recommended doing at least one vision board a year to keep your ideas fresh and flowing, your motivation strong and your inspiration growing. In times of change, try doing one every 3 months or so.)
  8. When you have finished review your board. Create a story for your future, including all the pieces and parts you have captured. Share the story with yourself, as though you are talking to a friend and you have already accomplished everything on the board. Don’t skip this step – no matter how silly it sounds to be taking to yourself – it is key and helps you and your brain truly buy into and reinforce your dreams.

“I just took the trip of a lifetime . . . My new job is amazing . . . I can’t believe I am already done with college/the book/the move . . . This move was the best idea I ever had, I love . . . I feel so much more relaxed now that I am . . . I cannot believe how quickly the pounds came off when I . . . It was hard, but I feel so much better now that I have . . .”

The options are endless and just like your future – the choices are yours.

The future you truly want is waiting for you.  Have fun creating it.

You can do it!

Are you ready? Life could be better  . . . Wishful Thinking Works Life Coaching

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Guided goodness – free meditation series

buddhist-481765_960_720If you have never tried meditating, or if you meditate and would like to add to your current practice, check out Oprah and Deepak Chopra’s upcoming, free 21-day meditation series.

I have used their meditations in the past, and they are guided goodness and a refreshing way to calm your mind and comfort your soul. Meditations are usually 15 minutes in length – a small amount of time that can yield big results.

To enrich your life and create new levels of awareness, insight and joy sign-up for their free meditation series, which begins April 10 by clicking here.

Then join the free  Wishful Thinking Works Meditation Facebook Group , which is designed to help you develop the meditation habit by

  • providing accountability – studies how this is key when developing any new habit,
  • to celebrate your successes – also so important when trying something new,
  • and to give you a place to share your thoughts and questions with others going through the same process.

It’s a virtual support group for your new journey!

The Wishful Thinking Works Meditation Facebook Group is open to everyone, it is listed as “closed” on FB, but that just means no one but members can see your posts. You have nothing to lose and so much gain.

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Join us to find a bit more peace in your heart and happiness in your life. You deserve this and more, and it is all free!

Are you ready? Life could be better  . . . Wishful Thinking Works Life Coaching

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If not . . .

if-not-youSeveral times a month, I meet with groups of wonderful Wishful Thinking Women. At our Saturday gathering earlier this month, we were talking about procrastination, and one of the women shared a phrase, which her Dad had often said to her. She noted that it had inspired her many times to do kind and caring things for others and for herself.

I had heard the phrase before, and had used it as a personal rallying cry to right social ills or widespread wrongs, but I had never thought of applying it to myself!

If not you, who will treat you in just the way you need and desire? How can others know how to treat us, if we do not treat ourselves with kindness, grace, joy, peace and a sense of gratitude and abundance?

If not now, when? Start today to treat yourself the way you wish others would. Move forward with your plans to go back to school, find quiet time, begin a diet or take that trip.

What are you waiting for? If you need permission, Sylvia’s Dad would surely say it is okay. And, Sylvia is such a warm, caring woman, her Dad must have been a very wise man!

You can do it!

Feeling fine on a Thursday afternoon

img_4669Listening to classical music and planning upcoming workshops, which always makes me feel extremely, happy, content and fulfilled.

Are you feeling the same way? If so, savor the moment.

If not, what would you have to be doing to feel the same way?

  • Hold that picture in your mind, breathe deeply and exhale slowly through your nose.
  • Hold it a bit longer, add a few more details, breathe a bit deeper, exhale even more slowly.
  • Gently let the vision fade away.
  • Breathe deeply, exhale with a smile.

Feeling relaxed, happy? Hope so!

Hope this moment finds you immersed in your version of wonderful!

 

When “I’m sorry” is the gift you need to give

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Apologies are something most of us don’t do well or do often enough.

We may think about apologizing. We may even brood about it, but doing it is often left undone. A truly heartfelt “I’m sorry”is a wonderful gift to give and will be well worth the effort, and it is free! Apologies can make the receiver and the giver feel better, and may mend a broken relationship or a heart.

“The decision to apologize is a tug-of-war between stubborn pride and guilt. . . . Making a sincere apology is an act of courage, not a sign of weakness.”

If you would like to get better at giving apologies, or if you are currently in a personal battle between your pride and a growing sense of guilt, the following 3 R’s might help you sort it out.

3 R’s of a sincere apology:

1. Responsibility

  • Accept responsibility for what was said or done.
  • This is the hardest part, I know. It is tough to admit to yourself, yet alone someone else – especially the person you have hurt – that you have done something wrong – intentionally or not. But it really is an act of courage, and one that can repair and enrich relationships.

2. Remorse

  • Allow yourself to feel the sadness or embarrassment associated with what you have done. Pushing it away will only make you feel worse, and will never make the one you hurt feel any better.
  • Accept and explain how you feel when you apologize. Then pause and listen. It might take time for them to let their guard down, and their first response may be hurtful to you. DO not get defensive. Listen.
  • Assure the person you have hurt that you are serious about not wanting to do the same thing in the future. Explain what action you will take to not let it happen again.
    • “I realize what I said really hurt you, it was thoughtless/unkind/wrong and I was wrong. If I get angry.frustrated/etc again, I will walk a way and cool down.  I am sorry. I was wrong/jealous/immature.You don;t deserve that.

3. Reparations

  • “How can I make this up to you?” “Is there anything I can do to make this better?
  • Then listen and do not react defensively! Their request might seem over the top to you or too simple to be effective. But since this is not about you, simply listen. Do not offer any suggestions at this point. Let them share their feelings and thoughts without interruption. Remember you have thinking about your apology for awhile, but they are just hearing it for the first time and may need a minute or longer to fully process and accept it.
  • If you can, do exactly what they ask you to, and if that is not possible, talk about solutions until one is found and agreed upon without getting upset or changing the sincerity of your apology.

Timing

Now! The sooner you apologize the better, but do not let the passage of time persuade you that an apology is no longer needed, won’t matter, or will simply stir up old hurts.

One of the most touching and beautiful apologies I ever received occurred years after the incident, long after the sting of the situation had faded for me. Yet, when I received the apology it opened my heart in ways I did not even know were possible. I was completely impressed by the courage and kindness of the giver and it inspired me to be more open about apologizing to others in the future. I have never forgotten the apology, the bravery and kindness of the giver and the warmth it immediately invoked in me. It truly was a moment to remember.  P. Robson

Don’t miss the chance to make someone’s day, open someone’s heart or help put it back together again. Old wounds can be healed, and new bonds created.

Whether you are apologizing for being short to a store clerk, stepping on the toes of a colleague or for deeply hurting someone you love, the three R’s can help you right your wrong. You may gain as much peace of mind as you give, and your apology may even be powerful enough to change the past and redirect the future.

Please note:  There is always a chance the recipient might not be ready to accept your apology – now or ever. If they refuse, accept it, and try to forgive yourself in that moment. Depending on the situation, you may want to try again in the future. If not, be open to whatever happens and know you did your best. Don’t judge their reaction or brood about it. Accept the fact that your words and actions have the ability to harm and be more aware and caring in the future.

As my Valentine’s Day gift to my readers and a way of spreading love throughout 2017, if you have an apology you want to give any time in 2017, but haven’t yet mustered the courage, I will give a free 30-minute apology insight and practice session to anyone interested in making amends. Email me @ wishfulthinkingworks@gmail.com. Include your name and a brief description of the situation. I will get back to you to arrange a time. If you have been thinking about it, it is time to do it! 

You can do it!

The Perfect Valentine’s Gift

Would you like to make someone you care about happy this Valentine’s Day?

Would you like to become happier in the process?

If so, write a gratitude letter to someone special in your life.

Your letter can leave you and the recipient feeling happier for months. 

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Gratitude Letters

A few years ago I wrote and shared my first gratitude letter; I wrote it to my Dad. I was a bit shy about doing it, but it turned out to be a wonderful experience for both of us, and since my Dad passed away a few years after I wrote his letter, the experience holds a special place in my heart.

I’ve been writing thank you notes for decades. I sent cards not just for gifts, but for experiences, past and present. I’ve written dozens of notes and cards to my aunts and to friends of my parents for their special acts of kindness to me as a child. One of my younger brother’s godmothers always had extra treats for us when she brought him a gift. Another of my aunts hosted weekly gatherings at her and my uncle’s farm each Sunday in the summer allowing my eight siblings and me to swim, dive, jump, ride, row, fish, and enjoy all sorts of other summer fun because they were willing to put-up with an ongoing stream of guests – our family and many others. Those Sundays were magic to me as a kid, and I wanted them to know.

Those letters and the memories they evoked are wonderful, but a gratitude letter is an even richer, more touching way to say thank you. Here’s why:

  • It’s longer – approximately 300 words.
  • It’s read in-person to its intended recipient, making it more of a gratitude visit with the letter as a hostess gift of sorts. The true magic of the visit comes from sharing your letter out loud and face-to-face with its recipient. (If you can’t meet in person, Skype or a phone call will work, but if at all possible go the in-person route.)
  • Dr. Martin P. Seligman, the father of Positive Psychology and one of the first and strongest proponents of gratitude visits notes the ritual is powerful, ”Everyone cries when you do a gratitude visit,” he says. ”It’s very moving for both people.”

Tips for making it work:

  • Write to someone, who holds a special place in your heart or who did something nice or kind for you, but you’ve never thanked, or thanked as much as you would have liked to.
  • Be detailed. Write the particulars of what you are thankful for. Let them know how their actions affected you. Include the whats, the whens, the hows, and the whys.
  • Let your recipient know you are up to something good! A funny thing happened when I read my letter to my Dad. When I finished, he made a joke about how I must have the wrong “Dad”, and then he told me he thought I was going to share something about what he’d done wrong – not right. (I was nervous about sharing my letter, and he interpreted that as seriousness or sadness. When I began reading from a sheet of paper he was sure there was bad news ahead.) We laughed about that, but to prevent any confusion, letting your host or hostess know the visit is well-intentioned is probably a good idea.
  • Leave a copy of your letter with your recipient. Don’t worry about making it too fancy, but using special paper can’t hurt. Laminating or a frame might be appreciated, or to others, seem a bit too much – go with your guts. Just don’t make the visit too much about what happens next with the letter; leave that up to your receiver.

The Ripple Effect

Another interesting facet of this simple and effective gesture is that it tends to grow and reproduce on its own. Recipients often end-up writing and sharing letters with folks they want to thank, and writers tend to write more letters to share with others.

Positive psychology studies show the good feelings can last for weeks, even months. I know for a fact, that years later, I’m still happy I presented a gratitude letter to my father. IT is a sweet and happy memory.

Increased happiness for someone you care about is just a few pen strokes. Don’t let this free,  foolproof opportunity for joy pass you by – send a gratitude letter to someone special this Valentines Day!

Queen for a day

Or a lifetime . . .

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It is free and easy to use, and can move you in the direction of your dreams!

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