Life Lessons

In The Happy Spot. More on Medium.

— the Night Before.

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Photo by Carolina Heza on Unsplash

It was 5:55 pm. I had just dropped my five-year-old off at a Trader Joe’s parking lot where her father was waiting in a parked car for her, a neutral territory only those going through a not so amicable divorce can appreciate. As I was getting back into my car and he was strapping our daughter into the car seat in his car, he yelled, “I called to pay for half of the food order, and they said it was canceled.”

It was less than 17 hours before my daughter’s 6th birthday party held in a park next to an amazing café that was to cater it. …

Not one published in 2020.

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Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

Books make us wise. They allow us to see from another’s perspective through story. A good book can take you out of your own life and drop you into someone else’s, taking you to a place you’ve never been while giving you lessons you’d never learn otherwise. Books feed the soul, as well as the mind.

Twyla Tharp said,

I read for growth, firmly believing that what you are today and what you will be in five years depends on two things: the people you meet and the books you read.

All the books on the list I would read a second time. I’ll never recommend a book that I wouldn’t read again. Because when you evolve through different life experiences, reading a book you’ve already read can give you new insights when you come at it with a different perspective. That is just one of the many glories of reading books. …

Habits, productivity, and systems.

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Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

Whether you are a writer, the boss, a manager, an entrepreneur, or a parent, we all struggle with productivity and creating good habits.

Thanks to the pandemic giving me hours back from not having to drive and do things out in the world, I’ve had the most productive and lucrative year to date since I started blogging five years ago. Stuck inside and nowhere to go, I chose to seize the opportunity of gaining time to write and work on my blog.

Challenging times reveal who we are.

More than a few times, I wallowed in the fear overwhelming the ethos and hid on the couch, streaming Netflix, and eating carbs. But for the most part, I put my head down and got to work. After a few weeks stuck inside, I made the conscious decision to limit TV and social media scrolling for my Most Important Thing — writing. …

The Diderot Effect.

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Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

A few weeks into the pandemic, I started having a few friends over for Saturday movie night outside in my backyard, taking advantage of the open air.

It’s my good friend’s “one night out.” He lives alone, has a pre-existing condition, asthma, and takes the necessary precautions to stay healthy. To stymie the adverse mental side effects of never seeing anyone other than on Zoom, he makes Saturday nights at my house the one exception to staying in all the time.

Pre-pandemic, he and I went to see nearly every critical hit in the movie theater (no blockbusters), mostly indie films and art-house features. So, when I decided to recreate movie night in my backyard, I went on Amazon and picked out a projector and a screen. We’ve had movie night outside for many months now and will probably continue this tradition when/if Covid ends some day. …

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Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

9) Stay in bed for ten minutes:

Feel your breath. Bring awareness to your body, move your toes, circle your ankles. Feel each muscle. Starting at your feet, bring awareness to each part of your body.

You’re reinforcing the mind-body connection. When you do this, you become more self-aware. Self-awareness is the cornerstone of emotional mastery.

8) Stand next to your bed and stretch:

Raise your arms above your head, do a slight backbend. Lower your hands down to the floor, with your back hunched over, and stay there for one — three minutes.

7) Take 0.5 ml. of CBD oil:

CBD oil reduces pain, quells anxiety, and calms you. …

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Photo by Tarun Savvy on Unsplash

Warning: the following books delve into the resiliency of the human spirit. I wouldn’t classify them as “light reading,” although, they’re easy to read because they are so well written you won’t want to put them down once you’ve read a paragraph or so.

If you have a weekend to dedicate, read one of these, you won’t be sorry. The brilliance of the storytelling will get you out of your head.

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t use affiliate links. I’m just passionate about books that break you open, make you think and feel, describe the human experience in vivid detail, and crack open your heart a bit to let the light in. …

And make you a better human for having read them.

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Photo by Dids from Pexels

A few times, during a dark hour or a confusing time, a book came along just when I needed it and changed my perspective.

Books can be incredibly powerful. They can point us in a different direction, teach us a lesson, help us articulate our emotions, take us on a new adventure, and change the way we think. They inform us, give us a new perspective and help shape us.

The most powerful ones change our lives forever.

If it weren’t for the books I’ve read, I’d be a different person today.

Books, especially the great ones, have that power. At least three books have fundamentally changed me as a human being, and I bet you can think of at least one that changed you for the better. …

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Photo by Anne from Pexels

Some women are predators. I’m not blaming her. Ok, I am blaming her entirely. I blame him entirely too. My husband was, technically, an adult when they met, even though he quickly regressed into a man with the emotional maturity of a teen in love.

He was gaga.

She can keep my husband.

But the dress she stole from my closet, I want that back.

While away for Thanksgiving, she went into my home and stole my favorite dress from my closet, only a few months after they started sleeping together.

It was bad enough that she came into my house where our child learned to walk, but my closet (!) while I was away with my five-year-old nursing my wounds with family and attempting to figure out why my life was falling apart. …

Toxic love kills your sense of self.

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Photo by We-Vibe WOW Tech on Unsplash

Most of us picked up unhealthy ideas of love from rom-coms, parents, Disney movies — mass media — which can be categorized as a gross misrepresentation of healthy love.

Most of what we learned is crap.

Far too often, what we see in movies or what we gleaned from parents can be summed up as codependency and not conducive to maintaining a healthy relationship.

John Bradshaw, a family-systems therapy advocate and family dynamics expert cites research that found that 96 percent of all families have dysfunction.

A large number of us didn’t see our parents demonstrating what real love looks and feels like. …

9 questions to remove negative blocks preventing success.

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Photo by Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash

When I first learned about this exercise, I thought, “Bonkers!” there is no way this will tell me anything about my relationship with money.

I was in a how-to-communicate-more-effectively-for-your-relationship class, hosted at my house, with my then-husband. A ten-week course that promised to make our marriage stable and connected again.

The marriage didn’t make it, but my relationship with myself and money improved.

If you are willing to have an open mind for the next few minutes, you can change your relationship with money.

Not right away, but this exercise will pinpoint areas you need to work on, once you know where the disconnect lies, it’s much easier to have the money you want. …


The Happy Spot

“We read to know we are not alone.” ― C.S. Lewis

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