Tag Archives: positivity

Intent of the Day: Beauty We See

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This week it has been our intention to notice beauty in the places we tend to take for granted or overlook. In ourselves, in others, in our surroundings. The act of noticing causes us to slow down and to train our eyes to look for something specific. To notice beauty is to disrupt the cycle we can find ourselves in where we are noticing what didn’t go our way. We end up noticing the people we don’t like, the ways we were slighted, the things that didn’t go our way, the disappoints we have with others and ourselves. Adter spending the week noticing the beautiful, we want to take the next step and call out the beauty we see. Why? Because it’s nice for someone else to hear? Sure. But we are also changed when we speak out the kindness and goodness we recognize.

How? He are 3 ways we were changed:
Continue reading

Intent of the Day: Choose Positivity

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Today we’re looking to turn around some of this gloom with a burst of positivity. With the recent rush of emotions coming from all directions, it’s time to find a firm place to plant our feet and we hope that is in a place where we can do good and move forward. So our intent is to make a choice and that choice is to choose positivity.

You too? Here are 3 resources to help: Continue reading

Boost Your Self-Confidence in 5 Easy Steps

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We aren’t innately born with perfect self-confidence. In fact, I think I was born with the least amount of confidence in myself as was possible and it took me a long time to build it up. I spent years in high school feeling awkward, unbalanced, and just plain out of place despite the fact that nearly every other teenager around me felt the same. My low self-esteem swept me up into a flurry of years of college as a quiet, constantly-apologizing, ball of self-doubt.

Many of us spend our days criticizing or comparing ourselves to everyone, and because of this, you might realize you aren’t very content or comfortable in your own skin. You might become overly anxious because of this, stressed or even depressed. As I began investing more time into understanding how to love me for who I was and also figuring out just how to “gain self-esteem,” I began to realize how common my own journey was.

According to the UT Counseling and Mental Health Center at the University of Texas, low self-esteem can be a big cause of strained relationships, it can impair your performances at school and work, and can “create anxiety, stress, loneliness, and increased likelihood of depression.” On top of this, low self-esteem can even make you more vulnerable to drug and alcohol abuse. No one wants that.

Because of the change that this journey had on my life, I knew I couldn’t just walk merrily along my way and not share. So here are five ways to help you boost your self confidence. And know this: how you love and view yourself won’t change overnight. It will take time, and patience, but it will happen. And these five things aren’t the end-all, you will spend time each week practicing these things to keep your confidence and yourself in a good place. Continue reading

Five Reasons to Smile…A lot!

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By Brigitte Cutshall

“You always look happy.” One of my neighbors said this to me once while out walking my dogs. Guess I was caught smiling again.

A smile can make a positive impact in any situation. It’s contagious. This is something we need to remember now that the holidays are here. You can enjoy those holiday parties and meals more by simply smiling.

The holidays are an opportunity to help reinforce the values and beliefs that are important to us. Yet many people feel overwhelmed and complain that they just want to survive the holidays. That’s a red-flag that values are taken for granted and you should adjust the traditions that have been set.

Even if you don’t feel “it” or aren’t in the moment, the simple act of smiling can change that perspective. Who cares if your Aunt Betty brings a casserole dish over for Christmas dinner that you won’t eat and find kind of gross? Focus on the good things happening. It’s best to just smile and be thankful for the moment to be there together. Continue reading

From Intent.com: Battling A Scarcity Mentality with Gratitude

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One day this week I was sitting on an LA subway (translate: no internet) without emails or text messages to distract me from the growing anxiety and worry over to-do lists and conquering of constantly looming life questions.

“Am I making enough money?”
“Am I wasting time/my life?”
“Should I go home for Christmas or would it be wiser to stay in town?”
“Did I email so-and-so about the time change for the coffee meeting in two weeks?”
“Is marriage in the cards for me?”
“Do I already have a padded envelope to do that mailing or do I need to pick one up?”

Questions were coming at me like I was sitting at the base of a waterfall.
All mixed together. No theme or particular problem to unite them.
My whole life was starting to suffocate me at the Pershing Square station and that part that felt most suffocating was that it was so easy to answer every question with negativity.

“No, there’s not enough time/money/energy/happiness in my day.” Continue reading

From Intent.com: Visualize

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Does it ever feel like being a realist is synonymous with being a cynic? You want to stay grounded in your hoping and dreaming, so you end up focusing on the worst case scenario. If you’re aware of the worst case, at least you can’t be disappointed. But there are plenty of books, news articles and bumper stickers that remind us about the power of positive thinking. Continue reading

Kindness – It Does Your Body Good

Helping the homelessI remember being told to be kind as a kid, primarily as it related to how I treated any of my five siblings. I was thinking about this again this week while watching how little kindness there seems to be in the news. Between political battles of ideology, fighting for land, arguing over resources and fighting over egos, we have forgotten how to be kind. “Be kind for everyone you meet is fight a hard battle,” is a quote attributed to Plato. Regardless who said it, its message rings true now more then ever. What would it take for us to be more intentionally kind? And, how would our world change we did?

To me, the word Namaste says it all – “may the divine in me acknowledge the divine in you.” May whatever is great in me focus on seeing the greatness in you – even if I don’t know you. And if I did, I would be kinder. If I did, I would be more generous, more loving and more forgiving. I would see the greatness in you, trying to express your inner divinity. “We must find out for ourself that inside us is a god or goddess in embryo that wants to be born so we can express our divinity,” says Deepak Chopra in his book The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success.

Here is an exercise I regularly use for myself and as a challenge I share with my audiences. The next time you are on the highway and someone cuts you off, or you are in line and someone steps ahead of you, how will you make a point of seeing their greatness and their divinity instead of feeling offended? How will you see them as related to you, part of you and part of a greater plan? It isn’t easy because we have been trained to focus on ourselves more than on others. We feel violated, slighted or insulted. But it doesn’t have to be this way – our reaction to this is our choice. As we can choose to be unkind, we could also choose to be kind.

Changing a habit takes intention. To change a habit of focusing first on us takes the intention of wanting it to be different and committing to make the change. The starting point is awareness. We have to be able to see when we are kind and not kind. We have to be present enough to see ourselves in action – to notice our triggers and be aware of our responses. Only then will we be able to stop the “go-to” reaction of selfishness and retaliation, and instead see that we have a choice. That choice could include kindness. In the example of the car cutting you off on the highway, it could mean not blaring the horn and passing a gesture, but instead slowing down, letting the other car in and be entirely unaffected by the event. This is a choice.

The most amazing thing about being kind, is the greatest benefit is not for the other person; it is actually for you. The more unkind we are, the more damage we inflict on ourselves. I was coaching a client this week who is getting ready to leave an employer for some unfair and unprofessional things the employer did. This employee has the ability to “stick it” to his employer; be upset, carry a grudge and bad-mouth his employer. Or, he can realize that in a win-win termination solution, the employee can choose to not be at the effect of the situation, but actually choose to show up kinder, more aware and more committed to greatness. He can choose a mutually beneficial response that treats both sides kindly and professionally. He took the higher ground. His mood, health and spirit were left intact from the event. Kindness, it does a body good.

In what ways can you be more intentionally kind today, this week and this month? Feel the effects of it. See the effects of it. Though kindness does a body good, it also can do a planet good. Choose kindness.

Clean “House” with These Inspiring Quotes

One of the most important skills in maintaining balance and wellness is to de-clutter your life of negative influences. Sometimes that’s easier said than done because we are attached to things that aren’t necessarily good for us (food, people, habits) or we can’t recognize the negative effects they are having on our lives. It’s important to do a regular clean out of the things that are weighing or bringing you down. To help you keep on track with your New Year’s goals we’ve compiled a few inspiring quotes to help you “clean house” and keep yourself motivated!

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What is your favorite inspiring quote for letting go? If you don’t see it here please share it with us in the comments below! 

I Intend to Keep Holiday Happiness All Year Round

flowerhappinessI have to say the holidays from Thanksgiving to New Year are my most favorite, but not just because of all the festivities. The family and food and wine and chocolate, and I love to give gifts. My mom is the most amazing seamstress and every year we create something for her to make. We give them as gifts; made by hand and imbued with our love.  There is such sweetness in thinking of each person, what will bring a twinkle in their eye and a deep wrinkle-causing smile to their face.

That smile is what I love.  For most of the year, getting my friends and family to smile like that seems harder than convincing Kim Jong Il to admit he’s been holding Elvis Presley hostage all these years. Seriously, life seems to be so full of busy this and busy that these days, we often don’t take the time to stop and smile from the depths of our soul, a smile so wide our eyes squint and we see the world just a little bit differently.

But something happens just after we take that first bite of Turkey. It’s like the Turkey (or maybe it’s stuffing, could be the stuffing) alters our DNA. It’s as if eating pumpkin pie (or any holiday pie) is the magic porthole that sucks us into another dimension where life is just…well…altered. I look around and everything appears to be softer, diffused, and just a little bit blurry, in a good way. All the worries of the year seem like a distant memory.  And everyone is smiling like a Cheshire cat.

And just like Alice in her wonderland, I too have fallen down a rabbit hole, but this one is warm and fuzzy and full of love and all things good, and I have no desire to find my way out of it. I float about this new world where everything is made of candy canes and marshmallows and even as the snow falls, I still feel warm wrapped in my favorite winter scarf, that one I only seem to wear during the holidays.

The vibrations of love and joy wind upwards all the way to January 2nd where I wake up, and after surveying the empty champagne bottles and confetti, realize that somewhere in the night I transported back to reality. I see the pile of bills on the table by the door, the Christmas tree is looking dry and tired, and dust has collected in the nooks and crannies of my collection of Santa’s from around the world. And I know it’s time to put it all away for another year.

And for a while I feel sad. I miss my house filled with people, all laughing and singing, having too forgotten about their woes for a while. I miss the jolly feeling I carry with me, as if I’ve had just enough bubbly to make me float. My feet are firmly on the ground now, ready to face another year of busy this and busy that.

With each year that passes, I notice I’m less interested in the New Years resolutions. I’m less interested in creating vision boards I probably won’t live up to, and I know that life will creep up on me and chaos will ensue. I like it that way. I’ll dream a dream and go about bringing it to life; I need not make a list for that to occur, and dreaming and doing is what we humans do, after all. But as we embark on another year of living, I reflect back on the years I’ve already lived and I am happy with all my doing. For sure there is more I could do, more I should do and more I want to do, and I will, but underneath all of that, there is a smile as wide as Texas and this year I’ve decided not to put that smile away with the Christmas lights and the stockings. This year I intend to wear that smile all through the seasons. And when I begin to forget that feeling of warmth from the fire I sat by on Christmas Eve, when I lose site of the glow that shines from the holiday lights that herald the joyous season, I’ll put on my scarf, close my eyes and smile like a kid on Christmas morning.

Like Betsy’s intent? Support, share and adopt these similar intents on Intent.com!

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Intent to stay positive

DIY: Create a Jar of Awesome for 2014

We can all fall victim to the negative sometimes or end up in funks that last weeks or months because we don’t feel satisfied with where we are in our lives. It’s a natural rhythm, but how can we pull ourselves out? What can we do to remember the positive things – no matter how small – to remind us to be grateful for the advantages and blessings we already have?

You create a Jar of Awesome.

The idea has been floating around Pinterest for a few years now, but as Intent is heading into a major make over in 2014 we wanted to share this idea with our audience. Get yourself an empty mason jar, bottle, or small box – any empty container you choose. Decorate it with paints or glitter or markers – write positive sayings on it, quotes that lift you up, paint it a ridiculously bright color – whatever you choose. We’ve included a gallery of some of the favorites we found on Pinterest that you can use for inspiration.

Once your jar is decorated to your liking, find a visible place for it and keep it near a small notepad or stack of sticky notes. Starting on January 1st, every time something positive, inspiring or awesome happens to you write it down on one of those sheets of paper. Write down the date if that helps, or not (it’s really all up to you) and put it in the jar. Make the commitment to yourself to try and stick at least one piece of paper in the jar a day. Encourage your friends to also make jars. Then on December 31st of next year throw a get together so you can read through all the great things that happened to you over the past year.

The jar also works for mid-year or quarter-year slumps. Whenever you start to feel taken over by the negative, open the jar and read through the great things that have happened to buoy yourself back up. This is a great DIY craft to do with your family or with a group of friends at your New Years party. At the end of the year it’s a really fun way to share your memories and to reflect on everything you’ve accomplished over the year (It’s way more than you think it is). The potential to make 2014 awesome is up to you, and creating this jar is just one tool to help you get there.

What would you put on your Jar of Awesome? If you’ve made one show us your pictures in the comments below! 

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