Loving An Alcoholic

I’m not really sure where to begin… Loving an alcoholic is probably one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my life. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions daily. You wake up each day not knowing what is in store for you. Not a single day, or single moment is predictable. Some days you wake up and the day is going fine and then out of the blue something switches and BOOM! It all comes crashing down.

When these moments arise, you’ll try every tactic to try and keep your loved one from drinking again. I’ve gone at it at every angle, ultimatums, compassion, giving in, silent treatment, you name it and I’ve tried it. None of it works… In fact it always makes the problem worse. The addict is going to do what the addict wants to do and unfortunately I will never be chosen over the alcohol until they choose it to be that way.

As much as I wish and pray my words and actions would help change the mind of the alcoholic, it just won’t happen until they decide that they want to change. It’s one of the most heartbreaking situations I’ve dealt with. Why can’t this person just see that I’m trying to help them? I only want what’s best for them. Why do they always think that I’m the enemy? These are questions and thoughts anyone has that deal with any type of addict.

The truth is…they don’t see or hear any of it while under the spell of addiction. Their brain has to be rewired and consistently worked on if they do want to change. Until then, any person who is extremely close to the addict will suffer greatly by their actions and behavior. They will never see in the moment how their decisions affect the most important people in their life.

The real problem is that, addicts are so broken inside and don’t have the proper tools to work on themselves. Nine times out of ten, addicts suffered a great deal of childhood trauma which set them on the path of self destruction. The only survival skill they have is to numb the pain, and quiet the thoughts and emotions. It’s a viscous endless cycle until they put a stop to it.

Why do I stay??? It’s a question I ask myself on some of the hardest days. Only a person who is in my shoes would understand, to the rest we probably seem crazy. But I’ve been with the alcoholic through sober times and drunk times. This person is a truly kind loving person. I’ve seen the beauty and I’ve seen the beast. I feel that every person on earth is deserving of love and less rejection. I know this persons trauma but I’ll never be able to feel it the way they do. All I can do is support them through the good times and the bad.

Addicts need less judgment and rejection and more compassion and understanding. We don’t have to make excuses or accept horrible behavior, but we do need to see through those actions and understand they are crying out for help and wanting to be loved and accepted. There is always hope for someone struggling with addiction and a big player in their success is their support system.

Please feel free to comment!

Foster Care & It’s Unfortunate Reputation

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

Let’s be really honest right off the bat, being a foster parent isn’t popular by ANY means.

Foster care and foster parents do not exactly have a great reputation in our culture. How many times have you turned on the television only to hear about a horrific crime revolving around a horrifying orphanage experience or crazy foster parents?

Parenting children who’ve gone into foster care is often resented. Sometimes it’s so bad you don’t even want to tell people you are a foster parent because of all the backlash that comes with it. I’ve heard every judgmental comment possible about why I do foster care or how horrible foster children are in my 7 plus years of doing this.

Yes…bad things happen in foster care, there is no denying that. But you know what?…Bad things happen in biological homes all the time, which is why there is a foster care system to begin with. But do we assume all biological families are horrible? Bad things happen in all occupations…but not all employees are judged because their co-worker made bad choices. Tell me this…how many times have you turned on the t.v. only to hear about another child being molested by a church hierarchy? Do we judge all the church goers because their pastor/priest made bad decisions? No… we don’t because that really isn’t fair.

So why are all of us foster parents judged off of another foster parents horrible choices? Why are the children who are in the foster care system judged so harshly? They are in the system not by their choice, but yet they take a lot of judgment from the world. Most people automatically assume that if a child, especially over the age of 5 is in the foster care system that they are a troubled child. Yes…there are troubled children in the system, but not all of them are.

So, why even consider being a foster parent? What is being a foster parent like? Most people don’t even know the answers to these questions because they can’t get past their stereotypes and judge mental attitudes. There’s true beauty behind the bad reputation that only foster parents will know and experience. Being a foster parent is not easy by any means, but it is rewarding.

Here are some positive things about being a foster parent that most people don’t know or understand.

Foster Parents Are In Need:

Overwhelmingly, the children who go into foster care are the victims of either abuse and/or neglect by their parent or legal guardian. At any given time, there are approximately half a million children in foster care nationally and roughly 60,000 under the age 18 in California. This does not include children ages 18-21 in the extended programs and children whom chose to age out of care. In Los Angeles County alone, the number of foster homes has decreased from more than 8,000 in 2005 to less than 4,000 by 2015. The need for new foster homes is increasing and the approval process to be approved is getting stricter.

Contrary to stereotypes, these children aren’t monsters sent to terrorize homes, foster parents and bio kids.  I’ve seen and dealt with a wide range of foster children across all age groups. Many children are very small, some even newborn. Some have been beaten. Some have been neglected. Some have been molested. Some are malnourished and underfed. Some are addicted to drugs from the womb. And there’s even some that come with almost no baggage.

Children with known, extreme behaviors typically aren’t sent to foster parents, they are placed in different level/type of care. Some of the teens have straight A’s, and some struggle to make it through the school day. Some of the teens are happy, and some are sad and angry. Some of the teens are just crying out for moms and dads to love them. They are all kids who have been hurt and endured pain that most people couldn’t imagine. They are needing a family to love and guide them and accept them for who they are and where they come from.

You Can Be An Amazing Foster Parent If You Want To:

Yes, some foster parents and foster agencies have a bad reputation. You don’t have to be a horrible foster parent or involved with a shady agency. You can be amazing, rescuing children from reoccurring trauma and shining a bright light into the world.

Those of us who truly want to make a difference in children’s lives can and will reinvent what foster care looks like. There are more good stories out there than bad and we need to get them circulating. There really is dedicated foster parents out there. Ones who do it to make an impact on children’s lives. I know because I am one of them. As soon as a child is placed in my care that becomes my child. I do anything and everything for that child as if I birthed them myself.

I make sure their time with me wether a short stay or a permanent stay is safe, secure and as happy as possible. No, it’s not all hearts and butterflies and it does get tiring sometimes but knowing how many little lives I’ve impacted keeps me going. The reward of having many children call me mom…is priceless.

It’s A Life-Changing Experience:

Much like biological parenting, foster parenting is life-changing. Besides the normal consuming activities of parenting young children or teens, foster parents have extra responsibilities of meeting state requirements and caring for children with acute/special needs.  Records need to be kept, visits need to be made, medicine dispensed, therapy appointments to attend and social workers and supervisors regularly visiting your home. This is all a daily part of your life. It’s not easy, but it’s good. It keeps the children safe.

Taking care of foster children takes a whole heart, willing to accept the payoff of laughter, pain, sorrow, joy, and even self-improvement. Watching an abused child gain the ability to smile and laugh again is priceless. Seeing a teen comfortable in her own skin for the first time is worth the mood swings. Ice cream cones, football games, and trips to the playground are the perfect distractions from the difficulties of being a foster parent.

Foster care changes children and foster care changes foster parents. The personal growth that comes from being a foster parent is life-changing.

Thank you for reading. Please feel free to like comment and share! I love to hear feedback and personal experiences.

The True Self

Chances are you have lots of beliefs about yourself and everyone else you come across. You use these beliefs to help understand why people do what they do. If someone yells at you, you might forgive them because you know they are under a lot of stress. Or, you might not trust them because you think that this person is always angry with you. Or, you might even think that deep down, they are an angry person who should be avoided at all costs.

There are probably times when you believe that a person’s actions reflect the situation they are in or their current mental state. But, you also have times when you think that a person’s actions are a reflection of their true self.

Psychologists around the world have been interested in capturing the qualities that people think are part of someone’s true self and also in understanding how the idea of a true self affects people’s actions and their relationships with others.

An interesting fact of the true self is that it seems to be a belief that is similar across cultures. That is, aspects of the true self have been explored in studies using many different populations around the world, and the beliefs tend to be quite similar.

Two core beliefs are that the true self tends to be moral and good. So, when people make a change in their actions, they are more likely to be judged as doing something that reflects their true self when they change from doing something bad to something good than vice versa. This is why someone who stops abusing drugs or alcohol is often judged as allowing their true self to come through, while someone who starts abusing drugs or alcohol is judged as suppressing their true self.

These beliefs also tend to lead people to assume that someone can change for the positive over time, even if many of their past actions have been bad. We are reluctant to decide that someone is truly evil and prefer to believe that their true self has a moral beauty that might someday lead them toward better actions in the future.

An interesting fact of the true self is that our beliefs about our true self and other people’s true selves are similar. This belief differs from the way we often treat our motives compared to those of people from a different group. Often, we assume that we and people from our group have better motives than people from some outgroup. But, we also assume that deep down (in their true self) members of other groups are good and moral people.

Why does the concept of the true self matter?

One reason, the belief in a true self affects people’s judgments about what actions give life meaning. A person might work hard at their job and also spend time with family. They might believe that their job is just something they do, but that the importance they place on family relationships is part of their true self. Meaning, the effort they put into their family relationships will give them a greater feeling that their life has had meaning than the effort they have put into their profession.

Another reason, the belief in true self can influence the treatments people will consider for mental illnesses. For example, many college students are willing to take medications for attention disorders that allow them to focus on their work. Part of the reason why they take this medication so freely is that few people consider their ability or inability to concentrate as a central part of their true self. On the other hand, many patients suffering from bipolar disorder are reluctant to take their medication, because they believe that their medication is changing aspects of their true self.

While the true self seems to be an important part of people’s beliefs about themselves and others, it is hard from a scientific standpoint to think of the true self as something that actually exists. I may believe that I have a true self, but is there actually a true self inside me? It can be useful to believe that we and other people are inherently good and moral, but that doesn’t mean that there is an inherently good and moral person lurking within every person just waiting to get out.

What is the Observing-Self? And why it Matters.

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Human beings have a unique ability that rarely gets talked about. It’s the ability to observe and react to our own behaviours as if they were the actions of someone else. In other words, to be the ‘observing self’.

As a Life Coach I encourage my clients to utilize their observing self, because it allows them to ‘step out’ of problematic trance states and gain a fresh perspective.

The observing self makes us human.

The ‘observing self’ is perhaps the seat of what it is to be human. As far as we know, no other creature has the capacity to reflect on reality and its own place within that reality; if other creatures do have something similar, it is to a much lesser extent.

This ability is a function of the prefrontal neo-cortex, which we can regard as the ‘conductor’ of the brain’s ‘orchestra’ or the leader of the brain.

From this capacity flows the potential to become more than just our immediate and current self in our immediate and current situations.

Many psychotherapeutic techniques specifically encourage the use of the observing self. The extent to which we can engage this faculty corresponds to how well we can transcend the situations in which we find ourselves, understand the workings of our own minds, and minimize damaging emotions so we have clarity and tranquility.

Here are three ways I use my clients observing self to help them feel better:

1. Grade emotions

I have them grade their emotions because it is as if a part of us is watching the problem from the outside. We are partly outside the problem pattern and have removed it from our ‘core’ self. This breaks the grip of the problem behaviour.

So for instance: If I feel anxious and decide that ’10’ is the most terrified I could possibly feel and ‘1’ is the most relaxed, I might then rate my anxiety at that moment as ‘6’. The act of doing this requires me to use my observing self. This is one reason I use grading with our clients.

2. Laugh

When we laugh at a situation, for that time, we engage the observing self. When we label ourselves or get labeled as ‘depressive’, ‘anxious’, or ‘alcoholic’, the opposite happens. The core of the person then identifies with their behaviour. In a way, perspective is lost and their identity becomes meshed with their ‘condition’.

Humor needs to be encouraged at the right time and in the right way. But you can tell that the capacity to engage the observing self is getting stronger when you see someone start to show glimpses of humour in relation to their situation.

3. Use imagination and analogy

If you are lost in a forest, all you know is that you are surrounded in a sea of trees.

But imagine what it would be like if you could be lifted above the trees for a few moments. You would look around and see that you are actually very close to a trail. After being set down again, you’d be able to find your way out of this sea of trees.

This metaphor/imagination practice demonstrates both how metaphor/imagination can activate the observing self and how engaging the observing self can help people have a detached view of their situations, putting themselves in a better position to escape a problem state or circumstance. Describing the pattern of a person’s problem with a story or analogy lets them see it ‘from the outside’.

There are many ways to help people detach psychologically from their emotional patterns. It’s a very important skill to learn to have the best chance at becoming as mentally healthy as possible.

6 Reasons Being Organized Will Help Your Life

Being Organized Reduces Stress:

People who describe their homes as cluttered or full of unfinished projects tend to be more depressed, fatigued, and have higher stress levels than people who felt their homes were restful and organized.

Surprised?

When you come home to clutter or a list of To Dos, it may prevent the natural decline in cortisol (the stress hormone) that occurs over the course of the day, researchers say. This can and will take a toll on your mood, sleep, health, and more. Taking the time to tackle those piles of laundry, sort through stacks of papers, and organize your space won’t just clear away the physical stuff, it’ll actually help you feel happier and more relaxed.

Being Organized Makes You More Productive:

Clutter is distracting, and research confirms that it can actually affect your ability to focus. Looking at too many things at once gives you sensory overload. De-cluttering your desk will payoff at work, but the benefits won’t stop there. When you’re organized at work, you’re more productive and efficient, which means you’re able to finish on time and go home. This leaves you with more time for your needs like to exercise, prepare a meal, relax, and get more sleep. Clutter in the home works the same way. You can either spend your days going through clutter regularly or get organized, stay organized and enjoy your space! You’ll find you have time to do other projects or get out and do things without feeling stressed.

Being Organized Improves Your Health:

You’re probably wondering how organization has anything to do with your health. Being an organized person helps you stay accountable for many things in your life. People who set short-term goals, have a plan, and are more likely to stick with an exercise program than those who show up to the gym and wing it. Using organizing skills to be more organized about exercise makes you more aware of your progress, which motivates you to stay accountable even when you don’t feel like it. This will also help you be more mindful about what you put into your body. When you are holding yourself more accountable about exercise the food will follow because you don’t want to ruin that good workout. Another way being organized helps improve your health is you will find that you sleep better. When things are in place as they should be in your life then your mind will also be calm. Between a good exercise regimen and eating a balanced diet your sleep will be on point. All of these things improve your overall health and quality of life!

Being Organized Makes You Love Your Home/Work Space:

This truly is a no brain-er. When you stay organized you can regularly find whatever you are looking for. Your space is clean and highly functional. Who doesn’t love a clean organized environment? It makes you love being in that space because it brings a sense of calmness and relaxation into your mind.

Being Organized Boosts Your Self-Esteem:

Being organized makes you feel more accomplished. This is one of the best ways to boost self-esteem. Go to your dresser and open it. Is it a complete disaster? If so, pull out all those clothes and dump them on the floor. Get rid of the things you no longer wear, and fold the clothes you want to keep. Stack them according to color and season. I love keeping my closet color coded and shirt/pant type. This way, when you wake up in the morning you’ll know exactly where everything is and what you want to wear. You will be amazed at how much better your clothes feel and look on you. I also love to have my bathroom organized with containers under my cabinets. I can always locate what I need when I need it and it makes me feel so good inside!

Being Organized Save You Time And Money:

Organization keeps you from buying items you already have, but you’ve forgotten about or lost in your household or workplace. Did you know lost item replacement is roughly an 80 million dollar business? Being organized can save you so much money and time it takes to replace the items.

Hormones and Exercise…A Key Factor For Your Health

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Understanding the effects of exercise is key to understanding the relationship between insulin and glucagon. As your activity level increases, glucose uptake by the body’s cells also increases. This is because of an increased sensitivity of the cells to the insulin. Insulin levels will drop during physical activity. At the same time glucagon secretion by the pancreas increases to help maintain a steady supply of blood glucose.

Understanding Your Hormones

Catecholamines: There are two catecholamines, epinephrine or aka “adrenaline” and norepinephrine. These are hormones produced by the adrenal glands, which are located on top of each kidney. These hormones help prepare the body for activity. These hormones are part of the stress response also know as fight or flight response. In preparation for activity, the part of the brain called the hypothalamus, triggers the adrenal glands to secrete more epinephrine (adrenaline). This will give you several physiological effects that will help your body sustain exercise activity. Some of these include: elevates blood glucose levels, helps to redistribute blood to working tissues, opens up the airways and increases heart rate and stroke volume.

Testosterone and Estrogen: For both males and females testosterone plays a vital role in growth and repair of tissue. Raised levels of testosterone are indicative of an anabolic training status (tissue-building). Estrogen has many functions, but it mainly influences fat deposition around the hips, butt, and thighs. Regular exercise lowers estrogen levels, which in turn lowers your risk for such problems like breast cancer and added hormonal fat.

Cortisol: Cortisol is typically referred to as a catabolic hormone. This means it is associated with tissue breakdown. Under times of stress, such as exercise, cortisol is secreted by the adrenal glands and works to maintain energy supply through breaking down carbohydrates, fats, and protein. High levels of cortisol brought on by overtraining, excessive stress, poor sleep, and bad nutrition can lead to breakdown of muscle tissue, along with other harmful side effects.

Growth Hormone: Growth Hormone is released from the pituitary gland in the brain and is regulated by the hypothalamus. Growth hormone is activated by several factors like: estrogen, testosterone, deep sleep, and active exercise. Primarily, Growth Hormone is an anabolic hormone that is responsible for most of the development and growth during childhood. Once one hits puberty the sex hormones take over from there. Growth Hormone increases strengthens the immune system, increases fat burning, increases bone development, muscle tissue, and protein synthesis.

Thyroid Hormones: The thyroid gland releases vital hormones that are mainly responsible for the human metabolism. The pituitary gland regulates the release of the thyroid hormones. The thyroid is responsible for regulating many systems in our bodies. Some of these systems it regulates are: basal metabolic rate, body temperature, breathing rate, heart rate, protein synthesis, metabolizing carbohydrates, fat and protein. Low thyroid function is a well-known disorder which causes fatigue, depression, weight gain, sensitivity to cold and low metabolism.

Research shows that after strength training and active aerobic exercise, testosterone and growth hormone levels increase, while estrogen levels decrease. Research has also shown that there can be negative effects after intense prolonged endurance training. It could lead to lower testosterone levels and a rise in cortisol levels. Exercising has a significant impact on hormone secretions and it is important to understand how they work. Having knowledge of these hormones can greatly improve your health.

 

14 Habits That Happy Couples Have In Common

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A happy couple is not by any means a perfect couple that just happens overnight, but an imperfect couple that learns to enjoy each other’s differences, and works together every day to create something special and unbreakable. In other words, a great relationship isn’t luck, it requires effort and care to grow and evolve in ways that keep both partners happy.

I have read several books on relationships, coached many couples who were struggling to find happiness in their relationships, and have been up against my very own personal experiences. All of this has given me insight into the specific behaviors that make two people happy as a couple. Here is what I’ve found to be in common with most happy couples relationships:

1. They practice self-care as individuals

I talk about self-care regularly with my clients. It’s a very important aspect of my work. Relationships don’t create happiness, they reflect it. Happiness comes from within. Relationships are simply mirrors of the combined ecstasy that two people have as individuals. What you see in the mirror is what you see in your relationships. Your dislikes in your partner are often your dislikes about yourself. Your acceptance of your partner often reflects your acceptance of yourself. The first step to having a healthy relationship with someone else is to have a healthy relationship with yourself. If you love yourself then you will radiate love to your partner.

2. They stand together and refuse to let outsiders have a say in their relationship.

Relationships don’t always make sense, especially to outsiders. So don’t let outsiders run your relationship for you. Many times outsiders have a bit of jealousy because of the current state of their relationships and can unintentionally sabotage yours and your partners. If you’re having an issue with your partner, work it out with THEM only! You have to live your own lives your own way… that’s all there is to it. It’s our duty, and ours alone, to decide if a relationship is right for us. If you and your partner both agree that it is right, and it’s worth working on, don’t bring the outside in. It’s ok to have privacy these days.

3. They know their relationship is a unique, uncomparable bond

This I can say I know from true experience. No one understands my husbands and my relationship like we do, and really, we like it that way! Don’t compare your relationship to anyone else’s. Every couple makes their own relationship rules, love agreements, and habits. Just focus on what you two share, and make your unique bond the best it can be.  All relationships have their ups and downs, they do not stay on a continuous blissful high. Working together through the hard times will make your relationship stronger in the end.

4. They are intimate about everything

Sex is not the only thing to be intimate about. Sex doesn’t always equal love either. Especially in the beginning of a relationship, attraction and pleasure in sex are often mistaken for love. Sex is amazing but it’s the easy part. Intimacy is far more and what makes relationships last. It requires honest communication and openness about concerns, fears and sadness, as well as hopes, dreams and happiness.

5. They don’t try to change each other

Our biggest need in life is to be accepted as we are. Sometimes we try to make our partners into what we want them to be, what we think we need, love, or desire. But these expectations and perceptions are against reality, against their benefit and ours, and always end in disappointment, because it is not who they are. The foundation of love is to let your partner be their true self’s, because that is who we are supposed to be in love with. Otherwise we fall in love only with our own fantasies, and miss out entirely on their true beauty. Instead of trying to change your partner, give them your support and grow together.

6. They go on dates or spend quality time alone

They take date nights with each other. If you neglect your relationship, your relationship will neglect you too. With busy schedules we often forget to relax and enjoy each other. In relationships distance is measured in affection, not miles. Two people can be right next to each other and yet miles apart. So don’t ignore the one you love, because lack of attention often hurts more than angry words. I love our date nights. We have 8 kids so date nights are much needed. Sometimes our date nights are simply cooking a special meal and checking out to our room where we watch a movie without kids! Whatever it may be as long as we get to be together.

7. Communication is the Golden Rule

Your partner is not a mind reader. Communicate your thoughts. Give them the information they need rather than expecting them to know. The more that remains unspoken, the greater the risk for problems. Start communicating clearly. Most problems, big and small, within a relationship, start with bad communication.

Listening is also part of communication. Listen intently before replying. Don’t listen so you can reply, listen to understand. Open your ears and mind to your partner’s concerns and opinions without judgment. Look at things from your partner’s perspective as well as your own. Most people fail to understand that communication is both speaking and listening.

8. They don’t play games with each other’s heads and hearts

Cheating and lying aren’t struggles, they’re reasons relationships break up. Relationships fall apart quite easily when they’ve been held together with lies. The truth is, relationships don’t hurt. Lying, cheating and twisting reality until it plays with someone’s emotions is what hurts. Promises mean everything, but after they’re broken, sorry means nothing. So never mess with your partner’s feelings just because you’re unsure of your own. If you are unsure in any way, be sure to say so. Always be open and honest. And remember that when the truth is replaced by silence, silence becomes a lie too.

9. They review and discuss their goals and dreams often

For couples, it’s you two against the world. Having regular discussions with each other about goals, dreams, passions and the future, in a way that’s positive and inspiring, will not only bring you closer together, but will also bring your collective desires closer to reality.

10. They negotiate and compromise on decisions

Since people’s needs change over time, and life itself demands changes too, the inner workings of good relationships are negotiated all the time. And oftentimes a two-way compromise is the best solution. There has to be a balance of give and take.

11. They don’t blow things out of proportion.

People make mistakes. Things happen. There’s no reason to break your relationship into pieces over spilt milk. One way to check if something is worth fighting over is to ask yourself this question: “Will this matter next year?” If not, then let it go immediately and leave it in the past.

12. They Control their anger

Heated arguments are a waste. They drain you mentally, emotionally and physically. Your partner doesn’t have to be wrong for you to be right. Most of the time it just doesn’t matter that much. When you feel anger boiling inside and you want to yell that rude remark on the tip of your tongue, just close your mouth and walk away. Don’t let your anger get the best of you. Give yourself some time to calm down and then calmly discuss the situation.

13. They apologize to each other immediately and forgive whole heartedly 

This takes practice but let me tell you from experience, my husband and I always apologize immediately. Sometimes we both realize how petty we sound and we both start apologizing. Making up after an argument is key to every happy relationship. A simple, honest “I’m sorry” is usually the most important step. We all make mistakes, but our willingness to admit it doesn’t always come naturally. So remember, it doesn’t really matter who’s right, it’s what’s right that matters. If your relationship is important to you, an apology is always right. Apologies must be backed by sincere patience and forgiveness. Because no matter how honest and kind you try to be, you will occasionally step on your partner’s toes. And this is why patience and forgiveness are so important to relationships.

14. They do sweet nothings for each other

We’ve all heard the term “sweet nothings” at some point in our lives. Happy couples will stop and pick up some flowers or their partners favorite ice cream bar to surprise them with here and there. As simple as it sounds, these sweet nothings show your partner that you care and pay attention to the details of the relationship. Sweet nothings can even be as simple as flirting with each other, or telling them that they look beautiful or handsome today. All those little things keep a relationship alive and thriving.

In conclusion I’m not suggesting that these are the only factors to being a happy couple, I’m simply stating some common habits that can make all the difference in the world. Most of the happiness in our relationships is due to intentional decisions. Meaning, it’s possible for us to significantly improve our relationships simply by altering what we choose to do every day. Happy couples are always looking for ways to show their partners that they care and are truly invested in the relationship.

3 Simple Morning Affirmations to Reach Your Goals

Affirmations can play a very important role in helping you achieve your goals. Here are a few to get you started on this Thursday Morning.

I am fully committed to achieving my goals.

I find when I’m going through goals with clients, there is a big commitment issue, it will turn out to be something that the person thinks other people expect from them but the goal is not very important to them. Make sure you are setting goals for yourself and no one else otherwise you will not bring the goals to fruition.

I can achieve all of my goals.

This is a simple but yet incredibly powerful affirmation.  You want to achieve your goals and this is what this affirmation is focused on. You can do anything you set your mind to, so yes you can achieve all of your goals.

I set goals that are really important to me.

Again make sure you are setting goals for yourself. If you set yourself a bunch of goals and the majority of them are not that important to you, your mind will get scrambled and you won’t know what to work on. Set clear goals that are really important to you and really focus on them.

Monday Motivational 5

Happy Monday! Here are the Monday 5! Quotes to get you going on this day. May everything you do today move you one step closer to your success.

With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.”

-Eleanor Roosevelt

“A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.”

-Ayn Rand

“Either you run the day or the day runs you.”

-Jim Rohn

“When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.”

-Elon Musk

“Expect problems and eat them for breakfast.”

-Alfred A. Montapert

5 Life Goals to Build Your Best You

Are you clear with what you want out of your life? Have you ever thought about what life goals you have for yourself? What are the most important things you want for yourself in this life? Setting life goals is a very important step to becoming the true you. Only you know what you want for yourself and only you can accomplish it. Setting goals is a way for us to be able to track our success and know that we are accomplishing what we’ve set out for ourselves. Even accomplishing a small goal really builds self-confidence and keeps us moving up the ladder of success.

Here are 5 Life Goals to help Build a Better You:

Find what you love doing. Yes I know everyone says this, and it’s so hard to just up and quit your job, you’ve got bills to pay and mouths to feed. You don’t need to just stop your current job, but you should spend some of your free time working on finding what you love and doing it as a side job until you reach your potential to quit that boring dead end job. Most people go home and are tired and put off what they really want to be doing for another day. Believe me from experience, even just sitting down and writing it out on paper or talking about it with your partner or friend is setting this shift into motion. Any energy you can put into what you love will eventually come to fruition.

  • Take Care of Yourself: I just posted a blog on self-care in the recent days. This is so important on all levels. “You have to take care of number one” is what my Grandpa always said and it’s true. If you aren’t taking care of yourself then how are you going to be your best you? You can’t have a truly fulfilling life without taking care of yourself. That’s everything from the trifecta mind, body and spirit. If you are not balanced as a whole person you will always feel a sense of lack.
  • Keep the Ego in Check: When we live from the Ego(which most people do and aren’t aware) we lose touch with what life really is. The ego is really good at sabotaging our life. It makes irrational decisions for us and generally acts out of fear, fight or flight. The ego is not your true self, it’s just an outdated survival mode we can’t seem to shake. Getting a hold on your ego will save you a lot of heartache and unwanted emotions. The ego can and will sabotage any life goals you set. The ego loves to cause resistance.
  • Leave Your Comfort Zone: This is a hard one for most people. We love feeling safe in our little bubbles we create for ourselves. Security of the comfort zone is great but what’s not great is no growth happens there. When we are pushed out of our comfort we have to figure out how to deal with that. It’s actually a wonderful life skill to have because you will always be pushing yourself to great lengths and evolving into your true self. Some of life’s greatest achievements come from being nudged out of that comfort zone.
  • Be Kind and Giving: Being kind should be a no brain-er. Unfortunately these days I feel kind people are few and far. It’s a crazy rat race out there and most people think cutting the line will get them there faster. Kind, giving people always finish on top and don’t have to sacrifice anything to get there. Give when you can and that’s not money. Give your time, your energy, your love and give it with no expectations. Being a kind, giving person will come back to you ten fold. It’s the law of energy. What energy you project at life will be projected right back at you.