2018 Vision Board…

2018 The Year of Expectation vs Reality

I was challenged to create a vision board for 2018 to include all things that are important and a priority in my life. You may think, there are so many things that are important, how can you narrow it down to just a few? I agree. It was a little difficult narrowing it down but of the many things that I had to choose from, these seven focus areas are THE most important. My friend Susan from school created a vision board group on Facebook and shared her past vision board from 2017 to give us a visual as well as ideas of what to include in our vision boards.

I have done vision boards in the past however, I took this one more serious because although 2017 was a good year, there was a lot of not so good things that happened. Vision boards are visuals that are used to concentrate and maintain focus on goals you have set for yourself. You can do vision boards online using technology or you can create one using paper. My board lands somewhere in between.

I used a poster board, pictures from magazines and online and stickers from my sticker vault. Continue reading to see what I included in my vision board…

My vision board

Faith

This is an area that is extremely important to me. It has helped me in the toughest of times as well as the best times. This year, I would like to grow stronger in my faith by completing devotionals daily and journal my lessons. Writing in my journal will help me commit the lesson learned to memory and help me implement what I have learned into my life.

The book I have started

Family

This area breaks down into two areas…

Husband

Mario works extremely long hours. He goes in at 2 am and sometimes does not make it home until 6 pm. With that being said, time is limited for us to reconnect. We rarely get a date night in and more times than not, it feels like we are just passing each other by on this thing called life. This year, I would like to have a scheduled date night once a month and connect more as a couple where we are acting more as “one” in our decisions, the way husband and wife should be.

Children

This year, I plan to have intentional time together with the kids, fun family outings once a month. Also, something else that’s extremely important for me is family dinner time. I am guilty of veering away from the way I was raised for dinner time. Dinner growing up was eaten at the table with both parents and my brothers. The table would be set and we would pass the dishes around that held the food. We discussed our day and had conversations with each other.

Today, dinner looks a little different in my home. I fix everyone’s plate and we sit in front of the tv. Cell phones are not banned and we are not actively engaged in conversations with each other. The goal I would like to put in place is to have a no cell phone dinner time where we discuss our day and just catch up on what is going on in our lives.

Finances

Saving money is not my forte. I am slightly addicted to shopping. When I am happy, I shop. When I am sad, I shop. I even shop when I am stressed… Do you see the problem here…This year, I would like to budget better. To do this effectively, I have purchased a budget extension pack to use with my planner. The rent we pay is ridiculous and the amount we pay is much more than many pay for their mortgage. Our lease will be up this year so we are wanting to purchase a home. In order to purchase a home, our finances must be in order. I have also been looking into the Dave Ramsey Budget and I am trying to implement that as well.

Well Being

This area is soooooo important. I deal with anxiety and when I am stressed or lacking rest, the anxiety is at an all time high. I want to devote time to take better care of myself through my yoga practice and a better sleep routine. When I work out, I instantly feel better. I feel I look better in my clothes and my mood shoots through the roof. Both of these things help my self-esteem boost and it is imperative for me to stay consistent in this area, doing yoga 5 days a week.

When it comes to my sleep schedule, I currently do not have one and recently have been falling asleep on the couch while watching tv. My sleep is interrupted through the night with my 4 year old climbing into our bed. She has gotten better and only comes at most two times within the night but I need that to be reduced to zero times.

 Journaling is something I would also like to stay consistent with. For as long as I could remember, writing is something that has been an outlet for me. When I need a brain dump, I often journal in whatever random notebook laying around. This year, I would like to journal 3-5 times per week in the same journal. Nothing extreme, just a quick 5-10 minute session for things I am grateful for or things that may be overwhelming me during that season in my life.

Towards the end of 2017, I began getting regular manicures. I would like to continue with this which helps me to get “me time” and come out with beautiful nails.

Friends

Friendships are very important. I have said it before but I truly mean it. Friends are family that you get to choose. Moving around a lot growing up, it was always easy for me to meet and befriend new people. Although I know a lot of people and I am friendly with more, I only call a few my true friends. This year, I would like to spend more time building and fostering relationships with people who love me for me and do not have hidden agendas. I want to surround myself with people who help me become a better person, who I can laugh and have a good time with.

Work

Teaching

This is my 12th year teaching and I would like to get out of the classroom. This year, I am planning on beginning the route to getting my reading endorsement.

Blog

Last year, I began blogging monthly, for the most part. This year, I would like to step my blogging up and do it more consistently, at least twice a week. The crazy thing is, I do write often, much more often than I post. I just am so ADD that I fail to complete it and jump onto something else and I haven’t gone back to complete them. As of right now, I have 12 posts that are saved as drafts and need to be posted. I will be working on getting those out as well. I also would like to do more collaborations with other bloggers and possibly some small businesses locally.

Limelight

Many of you know I am a Beauty Guide for Limelight. A promotion I was able to accomplish in November. In 2018, I would like to qualify every month and post regularly about this amazing company. I have a draft saved that discusses Limelight and the products more thoroughly, so please stay tuned to hear more about that.

Travel

This is an area that is very foreign at this time. I have not traveled on a vacation since 2012 for my honeymoon. Traveling is something I used to do often and it is great to just disconnect and see different parts of the world. In 2018, I would like for us to travel as a family on a vacation and as a couple, have a staycation or a weekend getaway.

If you have ever created a vision board, I would love to hear how you did it and if you were successful with achieving the goals you set for yourself. Do you set goals/resolutions? Please share how you keep track of them.

Happy New Year!!!

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Ways to Instantly Boost Your Mood

good vibes onlyIt is awesome to be upbeat, happy go lucky and full of life. Life however, sometimes has a way of knocking us off our feet and for whatever reason, our mood can quickly change. Did you know that YOU have the power to change that mood? I have found that the following four things have helped me to come out of a slump at some time or another along my life journey. I hope these quick and easy tips can help you as well.

Clean up and organize

cleaning

It’s interesting, when I feel like things are spinning out of control, I have found that cleaning can be quite therapeutic. Having my space neat and put together helps me clear my mind and organize my thoughts. According to an article from Shape Magazine titled “How Cleaning and Organizing Can Improve Your Physical and Mental Health,” women who described their home as cluttered or full of projects that were unfinished were more depressed, fatigued and had higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol (29, January 2015). When I am organizing, in my closet for instance, I like to go through and group my clothes in sections such as skirts, dresses, pants, sleeveless shirts, etc. but you can group yours in the way that is most effective for you however. Once you have gone through and categorized your clothes, all the clothes that have not been worn in a while should be donated to the Goodwill or even a women’s shelter.

Acts of Kindness

Acts of kindness are random non consistent ways to show kindness to others. A few months back, the pastor at my church challenged us to go out and show our love to others by doing a random act of kindness. He gave examples such as purchasing someone’s gas, buying someone a coffee or even purchasing an individual’s groceries. These were all great ideas but I wanted to do an act of kindness where my kids could be involved as well. We live in a fairly big city and in big cities, there are usually large homeless populations. At stoplights you are able to see them with a sign asking for money. Rather than giving money to one homeless person, I decided we would feed the homeless. On a Saturday morning, we packed lunches for some of the homeless in our community and drove around looking for people to feed.

feeding homeless

Within two hours, we had fed 9 different homeless people and my two older children both commented on how good it felt to make someone else smile. That is what it is all about. When you are not feeling good, try doing something for someone else. There are always people that can use a little help. Whether it is your aging parents, a neighbor or volunteering at a local food bank. If you are a bit of an introvert, things such as these listed may feel a bit overwhelming. You can do a random act of kindness such as sending cards to sick children in the hospitals, collect soda tabs to donate to the Ronald McDonald house for sick children and their families, or write letters of encouragement to individuals who need them from the website www.moreloveletters.com.

Workout

working out

Working out is something that not only is good for your outer appearance, it is equally as good for your body internally. When people work out, they feel a sense of well-being due to the release of endorphins. According to the American Psychology Association, there are many benefits to having a regular exercise routine. When people work out, they feel more energetic throughout the day and are able to sleep better at night. Exercising also allows people to feel more relaxed and positive about themselves and their lives. Having a regular workout routine has been known to help reduce negative moods, reduce tension and anxiety, improve memory as well as helping individuals think more clearly to make better decisions (http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/mind-body/stress/exercise-improves-your-mood/).

Pray/Mediate

praise

Faith and spirituality gives a sense of purpose and helps people to connect to something greater than themselves. A prayer during times of stress relieves the feeling of being alone. When individuals feel God is listening to their prayers and will help them, it gives them a sense of hope. With hope, individuals have the strength to move forward in life.

https://adrenalfatiguesolution.com/faith-and-stress/.

Prayer and meditation is one of the best ways to quickly boost a negative mood. I actually try to incorporate it into my everyday life to help keep me in check and avoid feeling down altogether. When I first wake up, I read from one of my devotionals to help me set the tone for the day. I’m currently reading Jesus Calling by Sarah Young and I also have the Joyce Meyer app on my phone which is amazing for her daily devotionals as well as replays of her daily broadcasts.

If you are not a spiritual or religious person, mediating works great as well. Yoga is a great way I have used meditation. A few years ago, I attended my first hot yoga class with a co-worker of mine and it was life changing. I can honestly say, this was one of the only places I was able to let go of all of my worries. Between sweating like a pig and trying to maintain the poses without looking out of place, I had no choice but to concentrate and focus on the present moment. LOL. If you have ever attended hot yoga, you know exactly what I mean. The temperature can easily get to over 100 degrees with no fans in sight, it feels a little like death warmed over. After an hour and a half session, I felt completely exhausted yet amazing at the same time so it was a no brainer to attend again. When I attended the following times, I was able to fully relax and again feel present and in the moment. Meditation can also be done alone, without yoga or a workout routine. There are many meditation videos on Youtube you can use or you can always Google meditation videos and choose the best one for you.

Remember, YOU have the power to change your mood, so choose wisely.

What are some of the ways you use to boost your mood? Comment below,  I would love to hear from you!