Sunday, April 26, 2015

Hitting the Nail on the Head

My blog isn't the only thing being neglected lately. Personal development lacks the attention needed to make this more than a group of words on a list of things I chose to make a priority this year. As much as I didn't want to make it a big deal, the events that occurred following a few posts have made me question myself and my goals for this forum. This was originally just a venue for me to write about the chaos I call life. It has turned into a recipe sharing, fitness loving, sometimes needing to vent in black and white journal of sorts. Turns out I have more than a few readers and for that I am extremely grateful. I don't need any kind of validation that my words matter, but knowing that people have noticed has made me cautious of what I share and the manner in which I write about it. Life isn't sunshine and rainbows all the time. My goal has always been to share life's struggles as much as life's successes. I've had to really look at how transparent I can be without hurting those I care about. If you could see all of the posts I've begun and never posted! I wouldn't care about it if I wasn't raising a family, but it's not that simple. Despite friends who encourage me to continue to be transparent in the name of truth setting us free (thank you for the encouragement!), I'm afraid I can no longer do that without jeopardizing my relationships with those most important to me.

That being said, I did some catching up on my personal development yesterday. One of my favorite sources of inspiration and development is Chalene Johnson's Chalene Show podcast. This particular podcast featured author and podcaster Michael Hyatt. They were talking about setting goals and being honest with yourself about your goals. One thing that stuck with me was Michael talking about being honest when you know things aren't working and the need to address them head on. For him it was talking to a business partner about leaving their company. It turned out he was able to give his partner some really great ideas for the direction of the business that proved to be successful for everyone. Nothing important happens in the comfort zone. It is important for us to continue to learn and grow. Part of that growth comes from being uncomfortable. For me, not being transparent is uncomfortable but is completely necessary for me to learn and grow my garden of skills to be successful in the future. It also requires me to be totally honest with myself and those around me. Some very uncomfortable conversations are coming. I HATE confrontation so this is going to be tough for me but I know it's essential for my professional and personal growth.

Being uncomfortable does not equate unhappy. Happiness doesn't come from arriving at a destination. The happiness comes from the journey to the destination. We have to make the most of things while in flight. That's where the growth comes from. We only get one life and we aren't promised tomorrow. I can only make the most of today. I'm going to continue to dream big and not listen to other's negative voices saying I can't. That's a pretty amazing way to live if you ask me.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Be Soft

This quote from Kurt Vonnegut moved me deeply this afternoon. It may be redundant to even describe my feelings. If you listened to the news at all in the last week, you have likely heard about the chaos that is Indiana politics. My heart is heavy with the hate that swirls in the media. I am deeply saddened that anyone would think it's ok to make legislation to perpetuate hate toward anyone. Keeping citizens from living an authentic life driven by their faith, morals and beliefs is just wrong to me. This after a rather tumultuous fall and winter with criticisms of teachers and education and previously approved state contractors. It becomes easy to feel angry and bitter. To feel like these are personal attacks against me as an educator and citizen of Indiana.

I've said it before; it's not that I want to live life as an ostrich, head buried in the sand. It's more of making sure I don't take things to heart. I can only control myself, my emotions and reactions. I can call, write, make appearances at local events. I can not think for anyone else. I can only think for myself.

Despite all of the ugly things going on around us we are surrounded by beauty. I was raised Catholic and this weekend we celebrate one of the greatest gifts of all; Salvation from our sins. I don't consider myself a highly religious person by any means. I was taught to love others and do unto them as I would have done unto me. I do my best to follow those rules each day and in doing so I have learned to recognize the beauty around me. Each day is filled with beautiful people, things, events, sounds, sights, experiences. Each day is a gift. We are not promised tomorrow, only today. This very moment is an awesome adventure. Love one another, friends.

Be soft. Be sweet. Believe it to be a beautiful place.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Catching Up With Technology

Vacation is ending and we go back to school on Monday. It was nice to get away last week. Now it's time to buckle down for the next 8 weeks. To be completely honest, I'm not looking forward to getting back. There is so much to be done. Some time will be spent mapping out the next two months to see where and when we need to be different places. It's going to be a fun whirlwind!

I'm a big technology fan. I like experimenting with new apps and programs. There are some tried and true that I can't do without like Google Docs, FB, Twitter, Instagram. I keep seeing new social media pop up like Meerkat. So many businesses are popping up on SnapChat. There was the Kik phase; the boys like Vine.  There are just so many to keep up with. We got a Smart TV at Christmas. I was skeptical but turns out to be the best thing ever! To be able to stream Netflix right through the TV is awesome, not to mention Pandora and streaming state finals games. So cool!

We spent the better half of our snow days  over the winter streaming movies and television shows and it got me thinking about how to get my workouts via a video streaming service. I did some web searching to find workouts available online. There are a few, but none of my Beachbody faves were available. I sent a few emails to corporate and got very polite responses about things being in the works, but nothing yet. And then last week when I logged into my Team Beachbody account I found the Beachbody On Demand tab! I knew it had been going through Beta testing with specific groups, but didn't realize it would be available to me. How amazing is that! Now I can access all of my favorite P90X, P90X3, Turbo Fire, and PiYo workouts from #BOD. What an awesome thing last week when on vacation away from home and not packing my DVD's or my computer. I pulled up my workouts on my iPad and did them in my sister's living room. Have resistance band will travel. Better than that, it gives me an opportunity to use other programs I've been wanting to try. I've been debating on purchasing P90X2. It's on BOD. My most recent program purchases? They're on BOD. I'm hoping my 21 Day Fix Extreme will join them soon. Yesterday I did Brazil Butt Lift. I would never have purchased this program, but holy glutes! I'm amazed with the workout and was not put off by the dancey nature.

You may be asking what this has to do with you. Anyone with a Beachbody account has access to preview this for 30 days. If you purchase a program you get access to it on BOD for 30 days as well. You can continue BOD access for a $2.99 a week. A value of well over $1000 of Beachbody programs at your fingertips 24/7. Did you know a Beachbody account is completely FREE? It's such a great way to stay accountable and now totally portable. I love that! Click here to sign up for your Free Beachbody account for access to these awesome tools!