Now that you are another year older…

’twas my birthday on Saturday ūüôā And we all know how much I LOVE birthdays. This one was no different.¬† Husband strategically placed a wonderful card, lots of kisses from the girls, full inbox of well wishes, myspace was hopping, and mom made dinner. Did I mention I had to work? Even that went well. Birthdays seldom disappoint.

My birthday is like everybody else’s traditional New Year’s.¬† I spend some time reflecting on the past year and planning the next. I never make resolutions. I used to develop expectations. This year I exchanged them for intentions (look for that explanation later in the week).

What went great:

  • We welcomed Morgan into the world!
  • Then I got off the baby weight ūüėČ
  • I got comfortable in my writing skin and developed my blogs and website.
  • I became more involved in my community, both business and personal.
  • I have made some great friends.
  • My career is taking off.
  • I learned to create goals and think in a different way.

What didn’t go so great:¬†

  • WHO CARES?!?! It’s my birthday! This is a whole new year.¬† I am a busy woman with no time to dwell on past mistakes, hurts, or missteps.¬†I am here in the now, excited about tomorrow and having the time of my life!

That’s what it is all about after all.¬†Recognizing that all the “errors” in life are only fatal if we let them be, hurtful if we carry them around, painful if we repeat them, and failures if we refuse to learn from them.

Happy Birthday!!

My scattered brain

I have to tell ya Рmy brain is all over the place.  If I could harness all my thoughts and follow them through Рwhat a wondrous accomplishment that would be. But, alas, it is but a jumbled mess and I am trying to decide how best to untangle the web.

I am a producer of clutter.¬† According to the Law of¬†Attraction, this is a result of the clutter in my brain. So,¬†I do the mental exercises, the positive affirmations, the clear the head before bed…guess what…it’s even more cluttered now!¬† Now that I concentrate on my goals that I have learned to set, and focus on the good things in life –¬†expansion to the possibilities has opened up.¬† More stuff in my brain!

The blog should help – get things down, in a category, out of my head.¬† But it is awfully public.¬† I love you guys, but I can’t tell you everything.¬† Maybe it’s time for a journal.¬† Or maybe I should use the Mind Jet program¬†more – but I am not real sure I am using it to the best of its abilities. Has anybody else used it with any success?

Dwayne Melancon has a great post concerning one of my biggest problems – managing email.¬† Actually, managing isn’t the problem – it’s not like I get that much. The problem arises from when the little announcer sound goes off to tell me I have new mail and I will stop whatever I am doing to check it. I know – compulsive.¬† I know – I should not leave it running.¬† Guess what – it’s still running.

So, then I check the email, check my google reader, and then it’s three hours later.¬† How does that happen?¬† j david macor give some great tips for getting this part of my life organized with one flaw – there are too many options.¬† Just tell me which ones to use!

I think maybe I should resort to a doctor’s office type schedule – you know, the one that is color blocked with certain activities at certain times of the day. Ha!¬† The title of the blog is Beautiful Chaos.¬† I am not so sure a highlighter could tame it.

So, there’s my dilemma, and your mission, should you choose to accept it.¬† Any ideas or things that have worked (or not) for you?

The Secret of Positive Thinking

I mentioned some short time ago that the subject of my goals has become a quest for a path.  There have been quite a few people put in my path to help out with all of that.

Things go along as things are wont to do.¬† I am reading “The Secret.” More on that later.¬† I will tell you it is a very easy read…very repetitious – but there’s a reason for that.

“The Secret” is, so far as I am in the book,¬†putting your mind where you want your feet to go.¬† I am a smart girl, so I understand the concept.¬† My mind is also very busy – so I have a little trouble with the focus thing.

In walks Kirsten Harrell.  Well, sorta.  She is a friend of Chris Cree and I lurk her blog trying to figure out how I feel about the idea.

People that know me well, understand that I am a bit of a paradox. I am incredibly feminine, with very little fluff.¬† I love pink and pearls, and have very little time to sit around and talk about what you’re gonna do – set a plan and get to moving!¬† I wasn’t really one for all the SNL Stuart Smalley business.

But, I am also one to admit when someone else may have a better way. So, I had to consider – what if Kirsten was on to something with these “Positive Affirmations” she promotes? What if the cat really was out of the bag with “The Secret” and keeping your mind in line in a particular way was the key.

So, on over to ipopin I went.¬† She has an album of 11 affirmations that seemed to fall in line closely with my values.¬† It was $10 for the download…I figured, I had spent way more than $10 on things far less likely to be useful.

I won’t say that they are life transforming – yet.¬† I will say that I am not disappointed in the least that I bought it.¬† I will also say that I listen to all 11 affirmations more than once a day…and it feels good.¬† I am not ready to give this up to fact vice coincidence…but I am also going to listen to them all again today.

I’d like your thoughts and I’ll keep you posted on mine.

Goals, values, and where do I go from here (even if it scares me to death!)

Not to inflate his ego, but Chris Cree is a smart guy (he married Lisa after all). A few days ago I listened to him on Wayne Hurlbert’s blogging radio show and he said some right smart things. Took me a few days to digest it. But, like all good food, it fed me well.

The beginning of this particular journey, oddly enough, started with Lisa asking me about my goals. Blech! That is difficult for me because of my intense hatred of failure and mediocrity. Where does one start?

I ran into a site via eWomen Network and I joined immediately. Smart Women’s Coaching is headed up by Katana Abbott and Jill Jordan. Again more talk about goals and getting what you want out of life

Well, as chance would have it, Lisa’s husband raised a follow up point – your goals have to coincide with your values. So, I asked myself, “April, what are your values?”¬† That turned out to be a way easier mountain to climb.

I can list a million things I value. After simmering on them for awhile, I can say that most, if not all fit in one of these:

I value family, education, and productive citizenship.

That was easier than “What are your goals?” But, an interesting thing happened. It has now become easier to define my goals.

  • I will be more involved in the school system this year
  • I will complete my GRI and ABR in the next 18 months
  • I will complete my degree within the next 3 years
  • I will continue to be aware and active of government happenings
  • I will start my book this year and have a plan for completion and development within the next 5 years

I think this is good start. And I was mindful to have all the componets that I think make up “a good goal.”

  • There is a concrete action
  • There is a timeline
  • They are written down and shared to provide accountability to myself and others
  • They are inline with my values

I can’t wait to see where we go from here!

Quick update…while looking for a new and exciting link to Lisa Cree, I found another goal…to learn from Christine Kane’s “18 Stupid Mistakes.”

The Newsletter

I don’t normally post the link to Turn Around Tuesday to the blog since the subscribe link is on my page…but this one is special – at least to me.¬† We’ll put it in the category of accountability.

Turn Around Tuesday for June 5, 2007

An epiphany

I wanted to know how people got where they are. I wanted to know what paths people followed. Why they headed in a direction, how they knew what to do. I guess I should clarify that I am speaking professionally and as a person of the community. So, I called the person who I believe knows the most about this sort of thing (Hi Lisa!)

She’s busy as she always is. She makes time for me like she always does. We chat for a while. It takes me a minute to effectively relate what my question of the day is. Lisa is spot on when she tells me it is a test of time. Can you put one foot in front of the other continuously day after day? Good, effective, productive people have perseverance and staying power.

Gotcha – that part I knew, but it helped to hear her say it. My fear is that after much of that time has lapsed, will I look back and realize if I had only known about this sooner, I could have gotten started, begun to develop, initiated the process? Maybe, she says. Depends on what your goals are. What are your goals, April?

Damn…