If you missed yesterday’s post, I’m working on writing something more deep and meaningful than a healthy meal idea and home cleaning product recipe…Not that they aren’t wonderful things to know and blog about! LOL I’ve decided to spend a few days or week, or whatever to discuss happiness, love, self-esteem, and goals. Or something along those lines. Just going to write and see where it takes me. 🙂
There really is a method to my madness. So bare with me. I’ve read a great deal of self help books, attended seminars, etc. what I’ve learned is that it’s very hard to achieve success without some level of confidence. Thing is, how do you achieve confidence? Let’s be honest, if you’re even reading this there is a great probability that you are lacking perhaps even a little bit in this area. Success, confidence, happiness, positive thinking, love – they are all not only related, but are relative to each other. You get me? It’s a kinetic chain of sorts. One effects the other, effects the other and so forth and so on.
I touched on trying to build confidence yesterday with goal getting and silencing the “CANNOT’s”. Today, let’s address love.
This is a big one for me. I have a really hard time saying that I love myself. I have learned, however to really, truly love all of you. I can say with all sincerity from the very depths of my heart that I have love for EVERYBODY. It’s taken a lot of work to get here. Won’t lie, there are days that I love some people quite a bit less than others and may need to remind myself that regardless of that person’s short coming or great stupidity (ahem) I do have love even for them. :-0 This love stems from my Christian beliefs. It was so commanded that we love our neighbor as much as we love our God. If you knew any of my neighbors at all you would fully understand what a challenge this was for me at first. 😉 Even if you aren’t Christian, it’s an important component to living a happier life. Another one of my all time favorite people, Bob Marley, also suggested we love each other.
Let me tell you, there’s such freedom and enormous satisfaction in looking at a stranger and thinking, “I love you!”. When you learn to love without boundaries, regardless of stature, color, race, religion, or intelligence (this one I struggle with at times, LOL) you really feel just GOOOOOD! When I’m feeling down, or agitated, or stressed and I force myself to acknowledge my love for the strangers that pass by, my day just changes. I feel lighter. I feel happier.
When people cut me off while I’m driving, I (most of the time) refrain from using my middle finger, instead I interject a feeling or thought of love and gratitude. I thank them for keeping me on my toes and thereby making me a better driver. I thank them for making my otherwise boring drive a little more interesting. I pray for them. I pray that they make it to their destination safely, happily, and without injuring anybody. 🙂
As far as loving myself, that’s another thing all together. Crazy, huh? Most of us are like that. Can you seriously look at yourself and say “I love you” and mean it? From the depth of your soul, really, really mean it? I can’t. I’m a work in progress. So, let’s do this together!
As with my goal setting suggestions from yesterday, I suggest we start out small. How about our toes? Don’t know about you, but I have really ugly feet. LOL! Wish I was kidding. So, my toe. Hmmmm. You know, I can learn to love my big toe. Let’s start there!!! My toe, it’s big and crooked BUT it looks just like my Dad’s. I have his feet. When I look at my big toe, it makes me think of my Dad. I love my Dad. So, that’s a great thing, right? OK!! You, know what? I LUUUUUUUUV my big toe!!!
Baby steps on our way to self confidence. We stop hearing that yucky “can’t” word and start loving ourselves, can you imagine what might become of us?!!!!!
I wouldn’t be serving anybody if I didn’t bring up the downside. Here goes: YES, there will be/are bad days. Days when you just don’t feel good about yourself, you don’t like anybody else, you feel defeated, you feel weak, you feel like a failure, yep they will always be. What do you do? You face those B@#%es and tell them where to go!! lol Actually, that’s where your journal comes in handy.
On those days when you look in the mirror and even that toe that you love with all you heart just can’t bring you up, you turn back the pages in your journal and read about your accomplishments. You read about what you thought was wonderful last Wednesday. You see that you put another 23 cents towards your family trip to Europe. 23 cents!!!! That’s leaps and bounds closer than what you were a week ago!!! It’s not that it’s only 23 pennies, but that it’s 23 pennies with REAL INTENTION. You accomplished something BIG! HUGE!!!! You realized a dream, a goal and you made a move in that direction. That’s worth a pat on the back, right? That’s something to feel good about.
So yes, Christ commanded that we love one another. Once you practice it and realize it’s rewards, it’s kinda like you commanding your children that they have to eat chocolate ice cream. Not a hard thing to do, because it makes you feel really REALLY good. Loving your neighbors gets easier, as does loving yourself. Baby steps.
Go. Write in your journal. Write about how much you love your toe, or any other part of you, 3 parts of you in fact. Write 3 things that were great about your day. Write 3 things that you accomplished today. Think of three people that you find challenging, forgive their short comings and try to find love for them.
One thing that can always make me feel good about myself, even if it’s just for a little while, is exercise. I feel the strongest, most beautiful, the most confident about myself when I’m dripping in sweat and crawling on my knees from exhaustion. It’s the one time during the day that I really don’t care what anybody else thinks, I have no self doubts, no questioning, no hate, I just do. I work out. I go. It makes me feel so good. If I write down my workout beforehand and then finish everything that I had written, I feel so empowered, so accomplished, so happy!!!!
I suggest to you, GO! DO! Find something that challenges you. Work hard. Beat the heck out of it!!! Then carry your head in confidence back to the mirror and find something bigger than your big toe to love.
Go for a run/jog. Interval. Run for 1 minute or 30 seconds full out, walk until you catch your breath, repeat for 2-3 cycles. Then drop and do 20 push-ups or 15 burpees, then carry on and repeat for 20-60 minutes depending on your personal goals/fitness level.
Recipe of the day:
Bamboo steamed fish and vegetables:
I just recently broke out my bamboo steamer from the deep dark depths of my cabinets. I had forgotten how much I really loved it! I used to use it all the time. Especially back in my, “I’m terrified of encountering any fat in my diet” phase. lol
Bamboo steamer baskets really add a flavor and aroma to your food. Aside from the benefits of cooking without oils and fats. They really do enhance the flavors of your foods.
4-6 ounce serving of chicken, flounder, or cod per person
Toss in seasoning of your choice, I like garlic, parsley and lemon juice or gluten-free, sugar free Cajun or blackening seasoning.
Add in all of your favorite vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, kale, boc choy, zucchini, etc. whatever!! Go crazy!
Serve with jasmine rice, cauliflower rice, or zucchini noodles = Awesomeness!!!! You leave the dinner table feeling full and really REALLY satisfied. You just feel clean. Try it, you’ll know what I mean.
You may also feel like you’ve just eaten too clean and may be craving something sweet. For this I suggest my absolute favorite banana bread/muffin recipe EVER!! No grain, no sugar, just really really good. To give it an added naughty feeling, you could add maple syrup (REAL!!!), extra banana chunks and double the cinnamon. That will give it a Banana’s Foster touch! Decadent, and a little naughty. 🙂
Best Banana Bread/Muffins Ever:
- 4 bananas (+ 1, if you’re going to go for the Banana’s Foster)
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup almond butter (I’ve used cashew butter and sunflower seed butter with the same delicious results)
- 4 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1/2 C combination of cashew and almond flour/meal + 1Tbsp of Coconut flour or 1/4 C coconut flour
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon (play with this to your taste, 1 was just not enough for me)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 pinch celtic sea salt
- optional 1/4-1/2 tsp nutmeg
- optional 1-2 Tbsp of pure maple syrup
- Mix wet ingredients in medium bowl. Combine dry ingredients in separate bowl. Stir to combine. Then mix on high speed for 2 minutes.
- Grease 9×5 bread pan, bake at 350 for 55-60 minutes, or line muffin tins bake for 30-35 minutes.