Monthly Archives: April 2014

Affirmations for Happiness

By: Gloria Marie

Create Powerful Affirmations

“When you believe yourself to be master of your thoughts, you become so.”

-Emile Coue´

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Affirmations are statements that help us practice positive thinking.  Your mind cannot have two thoughts at the same time.  You may have thoughts that follow one another but there is only one thought at a time. Affirmations help us replace any negative or undesirable thoughts with a thought that will empower us.  Affirmations can help us become strong, happy and whole. There are all types of affirmations: for love, prosperity, good health, happiness, self-love, the list can go on and on. I am a very strong believer in affirmations.  I write down affirmations and keep them on index cards or sticky notes.  I put them on my bathroom mirror, my desk, my kitchen, or where ever I spend time.  They change as I change or as my life changes.

An interesting point about affirmations is that they have been used for a long time. In 1922, Emile Coue´ published a book titled, “Self Mastery through Conscious Autosuggestion”. He was a French psychologist who developed a method for attaining health, success, and happiness through the use of autosuggestion. He did 20 years of scientific research and experiments with thousands of people to develop his method.

This is the Emile Coue´ method:

1. Sit in a relaxed position with eyes closed.

2. Repeat in a monotonous tone, the magic words:

     “EVERY DAY, IN EVERY WAY, I AM GETTING BETTER AND BETTER”

3. Repeat these magic words 20 times in the morning and 20 times in the evening.

4. Do not think about your illness or your troubles while repeating these words.

5. Your desire must have absolute faith and confidence.

 That is it!  This is simple to do.  You do not need any special props or need to be in any particular place. What you do need is confidence in yourself and to believe firmly that all will be well.

Try it for a month.  See if there are some positive changes in your life.

 

Create a Dream Journal

By: Gloria Marie

 Create a Dream Journal

Sensational Sunday

Every Sunday the Single, Happy, and Strong Blog will have an exercise for you to do.  This is a wonderful way to start a new week; to reflect, grow, and begin a shift in your life.  Today exercise is to create a Dream Journal.

Dream!

 “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

-Walt Disney

 Dreams are a series of thoughts, images, and sensations occurring in a person’s mind during sleep.  This week, start a “Dream Journal”. Get a journal to keep by your bedside to record your dreams. This way if you wake up at night and remember a dream or if in the morning you remember a dream, you can immediately write it down.  You may manifest some great ideas or solutions.

 The most vivid dreams occur during Rapid Eye Movement sleep (REM).  REM usually lasts 90-100 minutes and occurs three to four times per night. It usually lasts longer as the night progresses. During REM sleep, the brain is active and the large muscles are relaxed.

 In your Dream Journal, you may begin to see patterns, inspirations or teachings.  We dream in color and the images or symbols during our dreams have different meaning for each person. When I have a particular wonderful dream that feels me with such warmth, I love that I have a distinct place to record the images and memories.  Some nights you may not have any dreams and that is alright.  But, you will be prepared when you do have a dream that you want to record.

The International Association of the Study of Dreams has the following suggestions to record your dreams:

1. Before you fall asleep remind yourself that you want to remember your dreams.

2. Keep a journal by your bedside to record your dreams. Write the images before you get out of bed. They will fade quickly if not recorded immediately upon awakening.

3. Write down any image you remember no matter how vague. Do not judge the images.

 Remember to look for patterns or inspirations. Maybe the next wonderful book idea or project will manifest itself in your dreams.  Maybe a solution to a problem will become vivid. Try it! Start this week.

Did you have any interesting dreams to record?

 

 

 

 

Practice Forgiveness

By: Gloria Marie


 Practice Forgiveness

Big Heart of Art - 1000 Visual Mashups

 Forgiveness is probably the best practice for us to cultivate in our lives.  Anger is a negative, dark emotion. It clouds our hearts and our lives. Forgiving another person allows positive energy and love to replace the darkness.  Is anger holding back from leading a full life? What do you think you can do about it?

Sometimes just the awareness of anger towards someone is the beginning of forgiveness. It is not easy or quick to forgive.  Just sitting and acknowledging that you are angry at someone is progress.  The Dalai Lama’s says about forgiveness, “I forgive but, I do not forget”.  Forgiveness does not mean what was done to you was alright. Forgiveness frees your soul to allow more light to enter.

The New York Times published an article on April 5, 2014 titled, “Portraits of Reconciliation” with photos by Pieter Hugo and text by Susan Dominus. It was an extremely moving article on the power of forgiveness. They went to Rwanda; 20 years after nearly a million people were killed during the country’s genocide. There is a national effort in Rwanda toward reconciliation. Groups are counseled over months with the objective that the perpetrator formally requests forgiveness from their victims.  The text and photos are remarkable.  One common theme among the survivors was that they felt more peaceful after they forgave the perpetrators. They felt peace in their hearts.

There is a lot of power in Forgiveness.  Is there someone you are ready and would like to forgive? Follow these tips.

1. Be gentle and loving with yourself.  Think of the image of a deer, gentle and loving.

2. Be patient.  It will take time.

3. Take small steps.  Start with something or someone that may be easier to forgive. Gradually move on to larger, more difficult situations.

Did you give it a try?

 

 

Ten Books for Motivation and Inspiration

By: Gloria Marie

Sensational Sunday

Every Sunday the Single, Happy, and Strong Blog will have an exercise for you to do.  This is a wonderful way to start a new week; to reflect, grow, and begin a shift in your life.  This week I encourage you to find an inspirational book, I have listed ten books, to read each morning or each evening, whichever time you can reflect on the message.

~Serenity~

 Ten Books for Motivation and Inspiration

 This blog is all about empowering you and helping you gain inner strength.  This is a constant challenge. Some days may be great, other days we may have trouble just putting one foot in front of the other.  Since the 1970’s, I have always kept a daily inspirational book by my bedside. The book would provide a short quote or positive story.  Sometimes I would read it in the morning for motivation.  At night, if I had trouble sleeping, I would just pick it up, open up a page and begin reading.

This week, try to find an inspirational book that motivates you.  It may be religious or more self-help oriented.  This is another “tool” for your tool box of practical steps to take when you need a little more encouragement or a little more support.

Here is a list ten books that I have used.  Maybe one of these will “speak” to you.

1. “Positive Thinking Every Day: An Inspiration for Each Day of the Year” by Norman Vincent Peale.      I started reading his books, at my Father’s suggestion, when I was 10 years old.

2.  “The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have” by Mark Nepo.

3.  “Jesus Calling: Devotions for every Day of the Year” by Sarah Young

4. “The Way is Within: A Spiritual Journey” by Ron Rathbun

5.  “Words to Live By: A Daily Guide to Leading an Exceptional Life” by Easwaran

6.   “Christian Mystics:  365 Readings and Meditations” by Matthew Fox

7. Ave Maria Press has a wonderful series of books called “30 Days with a great Spiritual Teacher”.  Each book provides a month of daily readings from one of Christianity’s most beloved spiritual guides.

8. “Around the Year with Emmet Fox” by Emmet Fox.  This has been on my nightstand since 1977 and I still enjoy reading it.

9. “A Year of Miracles: Daily Devotions and Reflections” by Marianne Williamson

10.  These are a deck of cards.  “Power Thought Cards: A 64 Card Deck” by Louise Hay

Did you find a book that touched you? Motivated you?

 

 

 

 

 

Start a Weekly Club

By: Gloria Marie

Tip #15 Start a Weekly Club

 Yarn Transmitters

Being suddenly, or not so suddenly, separated, divorced or single again after a breakup takes some adjustments.  You have more free time; more alone time and initially that may be painful. Support from friends and family is so precious and important. My Tip Number 15 is to start a weekly club with your friends for companionship, fun, and growth.  The ideas for a club are endless.

My “Stitch and Bitch” group met every Monday at my house. It was started as a knitting group. Several of us had knitted at one time and we thought it would be fun to give it another try. We were not very strict and even if you didn’t know how to knit, you could attend.  Some women did buy needles, yarn and learned.  Everyone brought a dish, appetizer, or desert to share and whatever they personally wanted to drink.  We never organized the types of food everyone brought. It was really fun to experience all the different kinds of food. We used paper plates to make it casual and easy to clean up. Sometimes we would watch a movie after we ate.  Both man and women attended.

It was a wonderful evening of sharing, laughing and just being together. We even discussed writing a “Stitch and Bitch” Cookbook with all the favorite recipes from the food we shared.

The ideas for different clubs are endless:

  • Card Club
  • Book Club
  • Movie Club
  • Investment Club
  • Craft and Hobby Club
  • Current Event Club

The important points are to keep it simple and casual.  The idea is to get together and have fun.  The club you initially start may change, as mine did.  What started as a knitting group evolved to a get together to share recipes and watch movies.

What ideas do you have for a “club”?

 

 

How to Use Music as Meditation

By: Gloria Marie

Sensational Sunday How to Use Music as Meditation

Every Sunday the Single, Happy, and Strong Blog will have an exercise for you to do.  This is a wonderful way to start a new week; to reflect, grow, and begin a shift in your life. Today on Sensational Sunday we will discuss music as  Meditation. This will be another tip for your Tool Box!

meditation

How to Use Music as Meditation

Meditation helps to calm the mind and connect with the inner, most deep part of ourselves.  It is the closest we may come to experience the Divine, God, the Source or whatever your term is for it.  Meditation does not relieve our problems in life, but, it may help us handle our problems and stress.  There are so many types of mediation and there is no right or wrong way.  I believe it is a personal choice. Today, we will explore using music at a type of meditation.

There is much research done on the use of music for stress reduction. The Mayo Clinic and the University of Maryland both have done extensive research on the use of music.  In an Indiana University study, they stated, “Since the beginning of time chanting, singing and rhythmic vocal activities have been used for stress reduction”. The American Cancer Society says that music therapy promotes healing and there is some evidence that it may relieve stress and provide an overall sense of well-being.

In a 2013 study in “The Arts in Psychotherapy” found that “The effects of sedative and stimulative music on stress reduction depend on music preference”. This research gives strong support that we should choose specific music to release stress.

Now the question is: what is your preferred music?  You probably have music you enjoy listening to, but, it may or may not be the type to relieve stress.  This week I want you to explore some types of music and then choose one song that calms you.  Keep this for your “Tool Box”.

The steps:

1. Spend 30 minutes today exploring different types of music.  Go on Pandora, uTube, iTunes, or whatever you are most comfortable with.

2. Some Suggestions:

Blues, Music to open the chakras, Classical, Meditation music, Operatic, Chanting, Tibetan Bell Music

3. Pick 3 songs from 3 different genres.  Listen to each for 5 – 10 minutes each.

4. After each song, write down in your journal how you felt. Happy? Relaxed? Peaceful? How did it speak to you? Did it resonate with your soul?

5. Take 1 of the songs into your week.  Spend 5 minutes several times this week listening to your song. Just sit, uninterrupted, quietly listening to it.  I

What song did you choose?  Did you feel it helped relieve some stress?

 

 

 

 

 

Dating and Being Stood Up

By: Gloria Marie

Tip 14 Dating and Being Stood Up

“Love is a state of Being.  Your love is not outside; it is deep within you.  You can never lose it, and it cannot leave you. It is not dependent on some other body, some external form.”

-Eckhart Tolle

New Years Eve 2011 London

These wise words from Eckhart Tolle are important to remember while in the dating process.  We all want love and companionship from other human being, but, love is deep within us.  Sometimes it may be hidden, but, it cannot be taken away from us. Dating will have its ups and its downs; just like life.  When you are stood up for the first time, it can hurt.  You may try to internalize the experience. You may try to relive the last time you spoke. Stop all the chatter in your mind and grow from yet another dating experience.

There was a man I met on an online dating site.  We went out for about 5 dates and had good times.  He asked me out for New Year’s Eve and I thought, “Great!”   It had been several years; yes several, since I had a date for New Year’s Eve.   December 30 he texted me and asked what I was doing the next evening.  I responded, “Going out with you, I thought we had plans.”  Well, that night, the next day and the next evening: no call and no text message.  I choose not to call him and I never heard from him again.

Of course, my mind initially created so many scenarios and finally, I decided, it did not matter what the circumstances were. All that mattered was my reaction to them.  I could have gotten angry. Anger could be a very logical response.  But, who would my anger hurt the most?  Me! I do believe in Divine Order and in circumstances like these, it is important to become unattached to the outcome of the situation. Instead, every time I would feel hurt or anger, I would say, “I wish him much happiness”.  I continued to repeat this until the hurt and anger were gone. This creates positive energy for you! I do hope he is happy and I do know for sure, he would not be for me!

When you feel hurt of anger toward someone:

  1. Deep Breathe
  2. Repeat, “I wish him much happiness”.
  3. Keep repeating until the strong feeling of anger or hurt has past.
  4. Repeat for as many days, weeks, as necessary.

Next time someone hurts you, wish them the best.  And remember as Eckhart Tolle says, “Love is deep within you and cannot leave you.”

Have you ever been stood up?  How did you react?

 

 

 

SWOT Chart for Single Women

By: Gloria Marie

Sensational Sunday for Singles

Every Sunday the Single, Happy, and Strong Blog will have an exercise for you to do.  This is a wonderful way to start a new week; to reflect, grow, and begin a shift in your life.  This week for Sensational Sunday we will create a strength, weakness, opportunities and threats chart (SWOT chart),

DSC06006-Colours

A SWOT chart is usually used for business in strategic planning and goal development. Today our SWOT chart will help you identify different parts of your life and provide a roadmap for success. Take some time to fill in the chart and reflect on your answers.

Exercise:

1. Get a paper and pen.  Copy the chart below on a sheet of paper. Fill in each box. There are no correct or incorrect answers.  There are also no rules on to how many items you fill in each box.  Some boxes may have more than others.  Again, this is a road map.

2.  Your Strengths – These could be business strengths or personal strengths or both.

3. Your Weaknesses – These are areas in your life that you feel need improvement.  Maybe a new job? A better exercise routine?  You may need more self-esteem?

4. Your Opportunities – These are areas or people in your life that you can tap into to help realize your success.  A stable job?  A supportive family? Financial stability?

5. Your Threats to success – Really spend some time thinking about this one.  It is not always the most obvious answer.  Consider that it may be your own insecurity or self worth that may be preventing you from living your best life.

                        Strengths                           Weaknesses
                     Opportunities                             Threats

6. Reflect on your SWOT chart and begin brainstorming solutions. Write down 5 solutions to lead your most successful life ever based on your chart.

7. Step 2 – Get some blank paper and something to draw with: crayons, markers, gel pens in different colors.

8. Draw a cartoon of yourself living your most successful life yet. Base your cartoon on the solutions you wrote down in step 6.  An article in the Harvard Business Review (March 10, 2014) said studies have shown that humans process images 60,000 times faster that text. Have fun with the cartoon. After is complete, put it where you can see it on a daily basis to remind yourself that you CAN lead an incredibly successful life, you have the tools and the resources.

Did any of your answers surprise you?

 

 

 

Tip 13 More Online Dating Tips

By: Gloria Marie

Tip # 13- More Online Dating Tips

From my very unscientific research among my single friends, it seems always a dilemma on whether or not to try online dating.  It is easy to get discouraged and sometimes you need a really thick skin to continue online dating.

Restaurant Le Malesan

Singles in America complied the following data for Match.com:

-Fallen in love with someone they did not initially find attractive -44% of men 52% of women

-Think good first dates last between 2 – 4 hours – 52%

-Research a date on FaceBook – 47%

-92% of men would feel comfortable if women asked them out

-32% of respondents ask for the first and name when asking a date out

 

Here are today’s tips, using the data above and my vast experiences from online dating.

1.      Before meeting with someone you met online, spend some time researching them on the Internet. While everything you might find on the Internet may not be accurate, it may help you discover a little bit about the person you are going to meet. I usually try Google, property tax records, and I try to confirm their employment.  Keep in mind, the reverse is true.  Your potential dates will also be researching you, be mindful of what you put on FaceBook and the Internet.

2.      First meetings can me awkward, so, I have the two date rule. Unless someone was completely dishonest on their profile, I try to go out on a second date.  This is of course, if the man also wants to try a second date.  Second dates can be a little more relaxed.  If the men lied about their age, weight, or marital status that is a deal breaker.  The stats above show approximately 50% of both men and women fell in love with someone who they did not initially find attractive.

3.      Be Flexible. Be bold, ask the man you find attractive out, and try to make the first contact. If this is uncomfortable, start in small steps.  Email him; ask for his phone number, what do you have to lose?  From the stats above, 92% of men feel comfortable if women asked them out. 

What are some of your online dating experiences?