5 Simple Things to Create Joy & Brighten Your Spirit

 

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“Joy is the fibre of your Soul. “
– Danielle LaPorte

Life can be challenging, exhausting and heart-wrenching. Let’s face it… sometimes it just plain sucks. But, what if you had a list of simple things to make yourself happy, create joy and brighten your spirit. A go to prescription list to medicate your mind and heal your heart and soul.

Here are some things I’ve tried that helped me and want to share them with you. All I ask is you try one of them, just for one day. If any of these makes you feel happy and joyful, awesome! If none of these make you happy and joyful, that’s ok too. It means this wasn’t the right list for you. But the world is unlimited filled with opportunities to create peace and joy.

  1. Do Not Worry: Just for today, let go of your worries and release your troubled mind. You know those stories of mass destruction filled with pain and suffering playing repeatedly in your mind? Guess what? Never happens. It’s easy to imagine worst-case scenarios. But, in the end, everything usually turns out OK. All worrying does is steal your light sucking the life force energy out from underneath you. The next time you worry, replace it with prayer or a positive affirmation. Worry steals life, but prayer feeds life.
  2. Meditate: Sit in silence for five minutes a day. Yes, just five minutes. To calm the mind and build focus, that’s all you need. Sit on a chair or sit on the floor with your back straight. Focus on your breathing. In and out, in and out. When the mind wanders, and it will, gently bring it back to the breath. Just breathing. When thoughts come, let them go like waves in the sea or clouds in the sky. A simple, daily meditation practice gives you presence of mind to create peace, clarity and stillness in all areas of your life.
  3. Spend Time Outside: Spend 10-20 minutes a day outside in nature. Take your dog for a walk, play ball with your kids in the backyard, look at the stars at night, or read a book sitting next to a tree. When you spend time outside, you ground your energy releasing any negativity from your body and your energy field. Nature is a natural healer balancing and centering yourself making you feel peaceful, whole and connected.
  4. Pray: Talk to God for 5-10 minutes every day. Pray for yourself when you feel lost and can’t see the sun beyond the storm. Pray for your family when they are sick and want to ease their pain. Pray for your friends so they may be happy, successful and prosperous. Pray for your neighbors, the Walmart store clerk, the UPS guy who comes to your office, and even the stranger on the street whom you never met. When you pray for others and yourself, you feel a connectedness to humanity with a deep understanding we are all one.
  5. Read Spiritual Books: Read a book on spirituality. Whether it’s reading a Bible scripture, a chapter from the Course in Miracles or any author whose words touch your heart, it will lighten your spirit making you feel inspired and alive. Words are powerful with ability to penetrate deeply in your soul helping you see things from a different perspective. Reading spiritual books creates positive change within yourself bringing you to a higher vibration.

With the energy of today’s environment and the stress pounding on your soul every day, take a little time to make yourself happy. Even if it’s just for one day, try these simple things to shine rays of light into your spirit and to open your heart. You deserve to feel joy and love in your life no matter where you are. If you start today, then maybe you can feel joy the next day, then the next, and the next… until one day living in joy and being the light is the essence of who you are.

Love Yourself First

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“Do you want to meet the love of your life? Look in the mirror.”
– Byron Katie

Every morning when you wake up, the first thing you should do is to appreciate yourself, your life and your new day. Know deep in your heart you have much to be grateful for. Your alive. Your breathing. Your blank canvas is waiting for you. It’s beckoning for you to paint the scenes of the hours and minutes of your life to come. But, to create a beautiful masterpiece filled with color and vibrant energy requires one vital thing …

Love Yourself First.

If your day gives you lemons and throws rocks at you, be easy on yourself. We all have bad days, but they don’t define us. They are an experience. A learning lesson. Are they hard and excruciatingly painful sometimes? Yes, absolutely! But they are only a moment in time. And this moment will pass until becoming a distant memory fading into the infinite sky. So, when life throws you punches and you feel you can’t take anymore punishment, remember this one thing to keep you strong…

Love Yourself First

When you make a mistake a work, feel fat, forget to pay a bill on time, have a bad hair day with a humongous pimple on your face, get angry at your kids, feel overwhelmed, unworthy and plain stupid… remember you are beautiful, loving, compassionate, amazing, powerful and strong. And, your totally and completely worth it. You will feel awesome above all the shit in your life if you remember this one thing…

Love Yourself First

Creating more light in the world spreading joy and peace begins with you. If you love yourself a little bit more each day, it spreads like wildfire into your soul, into your heart, to your loved ones, the grass beneath your feet, the next-door neighbors, to their next-door neighbors, then spreading to every being in your town. This wildfire of fierce, purifying, magnificent love begins and only begins with you. To ignite this fire of sacred love, all you need to do is this one simple thing…

Love Yourself First

The truth is real love is not outside of yourself. It’s in you. You are love. Yesterday, you were love. Tomorrow, you will be love. This is essential truth never changes. All you need is to drop your guard and see it, feel it, hear it and know it. No matter what happens to you or what challenges you face, the light of love always shines bright even beneath the dark clouds. So on the days you mess up and fall apart to biblical proportions or create magic with your presence, remember this most important thing…

Love Yourself First

Photo credit www.stuchy.com

Heartbeat… Can You Hear It? Can You Feel It?

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“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition – they somehow already know what you truly want to become.”
– Steve Jobs

If you want to live a passion filled life – the fire burning in the pit of your stomach, courageous truthfulness, unlimited creativity, big and bigger vision, then feeding and feeling your heartbeat is essential.

What attracts you? What draws, yanks and pulls at your innermost desires? What fuels your burning need begging for attention? What makes your heart beat hard and fast taking your breath away?

Whatever is for you — listen and follow your heartbeat all the way. Maybe it’s fulfilling a childhood dream that always haunts the back of your mind. Or doing something to overcome your fear with a pure act of courage. Perhaps a call to serve humanity in a way that raises your spirit. Or feeling the push and pull of an energetic connection with another human being. Or maybe it’s the wild, out of this world creative idea dying to get out of your head into the real world.

The rhythm and beating of your heart signals to what drives you, motivates you, inspires you and captivates you. When it beats strong spreading warmth throughout your body, it means yes. When it beats slow or normal, it means no. Listen to the sound and feel your body’s wisdom. Then, follow and act on the messages of truth sent by your heart.

Listening and acting upon the thundering sounds within paves the way to live the life you are meant to live. They’re clues, signals and messages to take the next big step and venture into the uncharted. Trust the messages and believe if you follow, you will discover great treasures along the way.

No one said it was easy to listen and do what excites your spirit. But, if you are crying for more wanting to unleash the veil between the ordinary and the extraordinary, you must say go right now. Not next month. Not next week. Not tomorrow. But… Right now.

What is it that thing gripping your heart making it move. Stop and listen. Even just for a second. Can you hear it? Can you feel it? The boom, boom, boom beating of your heart is speaking to you, beckoning you, guiding you to what brings you happiness, passion, wonder and fulfillment.

Listen. Feel. Follow. Go. Do… right now.

Featured photo by Sergio Rola

Bad Ass 2016 Year in Review

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The other day I was reading Danielle LaPorte’s blog post (check her out… total spiritual warrior), on the 5 Q’s for Your Deeper Year in Review. Danielle answered, and invited others to answer, these five questions below to gain self-inquiry and insight from the past year and hope for the next.

What didn’t work?

What did work?

What were the highlights?

And then: What does the new year look like if it’s full of what works?

Bonus Q: What do your highlights say about you?

I thought “Damn!” These are bad ass and sooo much better than New Year’s Resolutions. To be honest, resolutions suck and are a hell of a lot worse than doo doo. And since, I loved this strategy, I decided to answer these questions myself and share them with you. And, hopefully, you will answer your 5 Q’s and share those as well.

What didn’t work?

  • Not trusting and believing in my abilities. Gotta trust myself and not rely on anyone else for my success and happiness. It’s comes to down to me baby!
  • Worry: Nothing amazing comes out of worry. Ab-solute-ly nothing.
  • Being too nice: Just because I am a spiritual geek doesn’t mean I should let anyone treat me like a doormat. No one has the right to treat me that way. Nada zip zero. No one.
  • Not listening to my body when it’s in pain. Mind, body and spirit are one. Must integrate all parts to live whole.

What did work?

  • Taking fear by its horns and smashing it down to the ground by starting this blog.
  • Finally taking care of my body when it’s in pain. That integrating to live whole thing.
  • Learning to love myself no matter what. You can’t rely on love from other people to make you make happy. This love must come within your heart and soul extending out into your entire being.
  • Trusting my intuition. My gut never lies. Ever.
  • Back to meditating every single day. Peace at last.
  • Starting my Reiki practice again. Profound healing begins.
  • Smiling as much as possible. Because it works for myself and everyone else around me.
  • Loving and embracing my sensual side as a woman. Seriously… wearing beautiful clothes that make you feel good works. Plain and simple.

Highlights

  • My son, Hunter, taking Judo with me and watching him compete. Hell! I never competed in Judo. Kudos to Hunter!
  • Seeing Hunter perform loud and proud in his first musical. He rocked it!
  • Inspiring people to live in truth to their heart and souls with my blog and writing.
  • Becoming a published writer with guest blog posts on SweatpantsandCoffee.com and TheChangeBlog.com. Yes! I feel like a legitimate writer.
  • Bad ass girl’s night out with my martial arts super hero chicks. Celebrating Katelyn’s 21st birthday was a must. And, we kicked it!
  • Testing in the DoJang for the first time with Hunter. Me: 2nd level Brown Belt in Judo, Hunter: Yellow stripe in Judo. Sweeet!
  • Creating deeper and long-lasting connections with my truest friends.

And then: What does the new year look like if it’s full of what works?

  • Taking my blog and my writing beyond expectations. Honest, no holds barring, risk taking messages. Complete and utter truth speaking straight through the mind and soul.
  • 2017 is my year. Nothing less. Hopefully more. I will make damn sure this happens.
  • Making those long-lasting connections grow deeper creating stronger friendships.
  • Allowing intuition to blossom. Watch out world… I am getting ready to serve you more.
  • Being a complete bad ass woman at all levels filled with light, love and spirit.

Bonus Q: What do your highlights say about you?

  • I love people. I love helping others and making them smile. I love love. And I am learning to love myself once again. It’s all about love, baby.

Now, it’s your turn! Let’s hear it and share it with me and others today.

Have a Blessed and Happy New Year!
Jodi

Featured photo by Brigitte Tohm

 

Be Bold. Be Beautiful.

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“Whatever you do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius and power and magic in it.”
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Today, decide to do two, simple things to change your life.

Be bold. Be beautiful.

Being bold and beautiful means choosing to be assertive standing in the real you. Raw, honest, authentic, strong, vivacious, loving, fearless, compassionate and empowered. Being bold dressed in the real you makes you beautiful like a shining star sparkling in the indigo sky.

Being bold and beautiful is not being what someone else wants you to be. Not following today’s trend guaranteed to die tomorrow. Not following the masses because everyone else is doing it. And not trying to impress the wrong people for the wrong reasons.

When you become bold and beautiful, your unlimited. Powerful. Magnetic. Your spirit soars like a rocket to the heavens above giving a message you are ready for more. God will listen sending you affirmations and opportunities to make you more the real you.

I will be honest. Some people won’t like the real you. It will frighten them shaking every fiber and bone in their bodies smack down into their core. Because seeing you be real makes them feel they should be real. And, you know what? They are afraid of facing the real person deep inside of them.

The ones who are ready for the bold and beautiful real you, are ready and waiting for you to arrive. This tribe, your tribe, will always have your back. I betcha they too are ready to be bold and beautiful just like you.

Today from here on out fill your life with fire-breathing passion, real and gut-wrenching love, unwavering and focused commitment and a solid connection to humanity. This transforms you into the ultimate beauty irresistible to yourself and the world in every way.

Be bold. Be Beautiful.

 

Featured photo by Tavin Dotson

Be the Light in Post-Election Trauma

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“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Darkness pervades the promised land. The black clouds of anger, hate, fear, resentment and anxiety spreads across the sky snuffing out the sunlight. It fills our towns. Our streets. Our buildings. Our homes. Our bodies. Our hearts. We can’t see anything anymore. Only negativity. It’s debilitating. Heavy. It’s wearing down on our energy and our souls.

The invisible wall has been built. It can’t be seen with the physical eyes, but the division is made clear and strong. The feeling of us and them has never been more palatable pulsating through our veins feeding fear and angst into every cell of our bodies.

Seeing our nation torn apart with all the fighting breaks my heart. Doesn’t it break yours? Can you feel the pain and the hear the crying of those suffering?

No doubt this election was a harsh, bright flashlight inflicting the pain of truth into our eyes. It shined into every dark corner revealing the amount of suffering, hopelessness, anger and frustration we all felt and still feel as a nation. It’s been brewing and building over many years with people feeling left out, unheard or being shoved to the wayside.

Now where do we go from here? How do we move on within this culture of rapid judgement and self-inflicted violence? How do we heal after a twisted election filled with vindictive, verbal sparring between the candidates, social media, our society and our loved ones? What’s the answer?

Be the light. Shine the light. Share the light.

To be light means to listen with deep compassion and understanding. Not with a mindset of us and them or east side, west side. Or how could you or why didn’t you. But with why or what? Or who you are or tell me your story? This is an opportunity to start a sincere, open conversation with people on the other side to gain a deeper understanding of what pain and suffering lies beneath.

The planet is crying in desperation for more lightworkers not darkworkers. Choose to be a lightworker and help make this earth a better place. Hold out your hand and be ready to serve. Not only for yourself, but for humanity. Turn on your inner light and let your heart rule. It’s that simple. Your ego is what makes it difficult. Not your heart.

Together with you and me and us and them, we have the power to create positive change by being the light with an understanding we all want one thing.

To be happy.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s your town or a third world country. Or your run-down, beat-up house or a majestic, 12-room mansion. We all are connected in one family. That’s the universal truth. Like most families, there will be people you don’t agree with. But whether you like or not, we are all one in need of healing and love. And the more we heal, the more we love, the more we can reunite.

All it takes is one spark to light a flame growing into a wildfire burning down all the pain, negativity, anger, hatred and pain. All that will be left are the ashes leaving the space to build and create something new. Together we can build this new creation with light, love, patience and understanding. Step-by-step. Brick-by-brick.

Go out into this dark world and be the light, shine the light and share the light. You need it. Your family needs it. Your neighbors need it. Your city needs it. Our country needs it.

The world needs it.

Are You in Pain and Hardly Breathing?

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“Turn your wounds into wisdom.”
― Oprah Winfrey

The pain. It hurts. Like nothing you have ever felt before. It’s crushing. Debilitating. It paralyzes you. You hope, you pray that one day this awful pain will go away.

Trust me. It will.

Breathing is hard. Short and shallow. Each breath you take feels like broken glass entering your lungs. You wish and hope for the day you could breathe like a normal human being once again.

Trust me. You will.

Right now, you feel buried. Buried deep down in the ground with the dirt of your life suffocating you. The grimy, filth of your troubles makes it hard for you to breathe. You want to wipe this shit off from your face, your life, your body.

Trust me. You will be clean once again.

It’s hard to be around people. The laughs, giggles, boisterous conversations and social interactions seems too out of touch for you to comprehend. You want to disappear and get the hell out confining yourself in the safety of your cocoon. But you hate living and feeling this way. You want so much to feel happy and connected like everyone else.

Trust me. One day you will.

This trauma, devastating life experience is hard. Real hard. You wonder if you ever will make it through. But, I know for a fact you will get through it and rise above it. You will become better, stronger, tougher, amazing, powerful, beautiful and wonderful. And even if you don’t believe me, pretend you do just for a little while.

Trust me. You will rise above the ashes.

You are a survivor. A warrior. A soldier. You are your own personal superhero with ability to tackle any villains on your path. You are stronger than you know pulling out your strength from deep within the reservoirs of your soul. No doubt, you will fly and soar high in the sky.

Trust me. Your cape is waiting for you.

The path before you used to be clear. But now there’s only darkness. You fear the unexpected twists and turns making you fall and breaking you down even more. But one day, the light of your inner wisdom will appear. It will be dim at first but will grow brighter as you continue to venture down your new road.

Trust me. One day you will see the light.

I know life is hard right now. Real hard. And, you can hardly breathe. But one day, you will get better, stronger, tougher, amazing, powerful, beautiful and wonderful.

Trust me. You will.

When You’re Having a Shitty, No Good, Bad Day

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“Happiness is a choice.”

“Be positive at all times.”

“Smile and have a good attitude.”

“Life is what you make it.”

Yes, all the above positive statements are uplifting, true and helpful indeed. I use and live by them almost every day. At least, I try to anyway. But sometimes, I feel shitty having a no good, bad day. Plain and simple. On these shitty, no good, bad days, hearing these statements makes me want to hurl a projectile vomit and throw a spear at anyone who dares to speak them to me. And, you know what? That’s OK.

We are human. And being human means we experience a vast array of emotions ranging from anxiety to peace and from depression to joyfulness. I do believe life is 100% better being happy and positive. But we need to accept there will be days when we feel upset, stressed, scared, depressed, anxious and frustrated. Life is not always rainbows and unicorns, but sometimes tornadoes and wolves. Once we accept this fact, we can take the proper steps to prepare and handle these difficult emotions with grace and dignity.

Even though we feel wrecked, these unpleasant emotions aren’t necessarily “bad”. They give clues to what needs attention for self-improvement and healing. Once we notice the clues, we have the opportunity to look deep within and see what truth lies beneath the surface. It also means we are normal trying to navigate our lives in a difficult world. In the end, what matters most is what we do with these emotions.

I’m no expert since I am working on this all the time. But when I feel negative or sad, here are a few things I try and maybe they will help you too.

  • Embrace it: When you feel down or upset, embrace these feelings. Like a loving mother holding her crying baby, nurture and hold your feelings with love and compassion. Heal your pain with your attention and care. After a while, the pain or sadness fades away transforming into peace.
  • Let go of the story: We tell ourselves stories in our minds about how bad it is, how awful we were treated and how we are victims over and over again. Today, let go of the story. Release it into the universe. If you can’t let it go, change it. Make yourself the hero. See yourself rising above the ashes to overcome your challenges and win.
  • Journalize: Write down your feelings. Let all the nasty, raw emotions bleed right on the paper seeping through the other side. The more honest you are with your writing, the more you release and heal. This is great way to process your emotions while helping you see things from a different perspective. When I write about something I am upset about, I notice towards the end my words have changed to a more positive tone. My view point shifts throughout the journaling to see things in a new light.
  • Feel your body: Pause and take a moment to feel the stress and tension in your body. Where do you feel tightness? On your forehead or cheeks? Are your neck and shoulders tight and tense? How is your breathing? Is it short and shallow? Are you tensing up your jaw? The more in tune you are with your physical body, the greater ability you have to relax. Practice deep breathing and release the areas you feel tension and restriction.
  • You are not alone: All of us have bad days. We all get stressed, overwhelmed and experience disappointments and failures. Please know you are not alone and it’s ok. Reach out to a friend and talk about what’s going on. I’m sure they have their own story to tell helping you understand we all experience struggles.
  • Relax: Take a time out and relax. Meditate next to a tree. Go for a walk next to a lake. Maybe even take a nap. Sometimes the best medicine is go within and be with yourself for a little while. There’s nothing selfish with needing to spend time alone to rejuvenate and center your spirit. When you come back from relaxing, things will be much easier to deal with. You might discover it’s not as bad as it seemed to be, but instead, turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

If you are feeling shitty, having a no good, bad day, remember it’s normal to feel this way. Don’t beat yourself up. Instead, understand you are a beautiful soul filled with light and love learning valuable lessons in a challenging world.

One day, you will get there.

We all will, together.

Be a Tough and Awesome Fighter

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I’m a martial artist who loves to fight. Kicking, throwing, punching, arm barring, pinning. You name it. I love it all. If you challenge me, I will take you up on it. If obstacles are in my way, I will push through it. If someone charges at me, I will throw them down. Hard.

Nothing stops me from facing my opponents head on. Is fighting scary? Yes! Is fighting fun? Of course! Do I learn from fighting? You bet.

As much as I love fighting in the Dojo, my favorite fights are the ones I face in daily life.

But first, let me clarify what I mean by fighting. It’s not being mean to someone, being a bully, hurting people or starting arguments.

What I mean by fighting, is to fight the good fight. The good fight involves fighting for your passions and dreams, for what you believe in, your self-worth and your life purpose. It’s about living and walking your inner truth being the person who you are deep down inside. The good fighter is strong and brave, but fluid and relaxed with a spirited heart filled with light and love.

So how do you become the good fighter?

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