December 14 – Appreciate What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it? (Author: Victoria Klein)
A good friend of mine says that I’m a mountain climber. She meant in regards to setting goals as opposed to literally climbing hills. Basically when a true mountain climber gets to the top, instead of taking a moment to see all the way he’s traveled, he immediately sets his sights on the next highest peak. Even though the current mountain he just scaled seemed very high, it now seems like a valley in light of the new height. In general, that has been the story of my life. Every goal I’ve ever set seemed so impossible until I completed it-then it seemed like nothing and I immediately focus on the next goal-or mountain if you will. In the past, this type of existence has served me well. In recent years, that mode of thought has not been very encouraging. Now that I know how the story goes, it is difficult to gather the energy for a climb. I’ve convinced myself that once I make the trek (and going through whatever challenges this may bring), I will not be satisfied so why bother. I, the mountain climber, has been stuck on the side of a cliff for the last few years, convincing myself that its not so bad. This year, I’m most grateful that I’ve begun to eradicate that belief system and recognize how much value there is, has been and continues to be in the journey. I’m so grateful that I’ve begun to look at things from a different perspective. I know that my attitude of gratitude surrounding my journey will better serve me!
December 13 – Action When it comes to aspirations, it’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen. What’s your next step? (Author: Scott Belsky)
One of my friends is a stylist. Whenever he gets the outfit just so he stands back, observes his work and says ACTION! His work is done at that point but he says ACTION signifying it is time for the client to do their part-work the outfit w/poise and confidence. I feel like that’s where I am. I’ve DONE the work. This year was about A LOT of work! I’ve learned more that I ever thought I could know about myself. Now its time for ACTION. What do I do next? First step is walking in confidence. WHATEVER I decide to do, I believe I can get it done PERIOD end of story. So I need to move that way in the world. No use in hiding it! It’s now time to aggressively set some goals. I may have been reluctant in the past to do so because I didn’t see the point. I’ve always been able to literally make things happen, now I just need to be more strategic in my approach. So as I look at the year ahead I’m so ready for ACTION! Here we go…
December 9 – Party Prompt: Party. What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans. (Author: Shauna Reid)
I must admit, thinking of this post made me realize just how much fun I had this year! I’m always so quick to say I don’t ever do anything or I don’t have any friends when that is CLEARLY not the case! 2010 was challenging but there was always time for a good time! Instead of writing about it, I’ll show it. Here are some pics from some of my fav shindigs of the year! I’m blessed to be able to have had some REALLY great times with really cool people I so look forward to what 2011 has in store
December 8 – Beautifully Different. Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different – you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful. (Author: Karen Walrond)
This one was hard. It appeared on yesterday and it took a while to find the way to say what I meant quite right. I find it difficult to speak on myself in a positive light-it can be taken for arrogance or conceit. The thing is though we all SHOULD know how special we are and speak on it! I don’t think that necessarily makes us boastful but just aware of the truth.
I think the things that make me different are evident in how people receive me. No matter where I go, the majority of folk will take something positive away from interaction with me. I think it’s my smile-people seem to be drawn to my smile. I think I’m a REALLY active listener as well. I have a great memory so that helps me to be able to remember folk-I didn’t think that was anything special but I guess in a world where people come and go, it feels good to have someone really remember/recognize you. I’m an awesome cheerleader. If someone does something I like I show my appreciation by spreading the word. In general, I’m willing to try new things. I’m a sharer and a giver. I’m genuine as well, even when my words my send mixed signals, my facial expressions won’t-I’ve never been the best at hiding how I feel. I’m a whole bunch of things but I think it’s my personality that makes me beautiful
December 7 – Community Prompt: Community. Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011? (Author: Cali Harris)
I think that this year I exposed myself to a variety of communities. In the early part of the year I just wanted to be alone but once February rolled around, I was determined to get off the sofa. I had my friends from my waitress days so I was a part of the hospitality industry community. I became a part of the underground music scene in New Orleans which is its own community. When I went back to work on a TV Show I found myself in the midst of a great entertainment employees community. Later during the year I joined a writer’s group and was grateful to be a part of a community of writers and storytellers. Funny thing is that all of my communities (except for the hospitality one) were with people or relationships that stemmed from social media networking.
In 2011 I want to have a deeper connection with my writer’s group. There’s so much talent and experience there and I know my work can grow as a result. I also want to involve myself more with a spiritual group. I’m thinking (and have had this thought for some time) that I want to start A COURSE IN MIRACLES group.
December 6 – Make. What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it? (Author: Gretchen Rubin)
I make vision boards and posters and the like quite a bit but have not in some time. I think that I’ll clear some time and make one before the end of the year. (short post but that’s all I’ve got.)
December 5 – Let Go. What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why? (Author: Alice Bradley)
I am a seriously emotional person. I have never been able to half-heartedly do things. If I’m in, I’m ALL in. So when things don’t work out, it gets me off tilter-ESPECIALLY if I feel I did everything I was supposed to do. There was an instance this year where I felt I was being 110% above board and my efforts were basically shit on. I met someone, I had a vision of ways we could work together, I outlined these ideas, they were accepted and we got to work. As I said if I’m in, I’m in so when financial requests were made I stepped up but was clear on the expected repayment. Long story short, timelines weren’t complied with and when I said why it was important I get my money back as promised, the response was basically no and the work relationship ended on the spot with no possible recourse. This was so hurtful because part of the plan involved a film I wanted to produce. When that didn’t work out I was pretty devastated and as I stated I don’t do things lightly so I replayed everything over and over again in my head trying to figure out where I went wrong, how I could do things better, what I had done to cause such a horrible ending. In retrospect, I take FULL responsibility for my part. I lay no blame and no ill will towards the other party. But I know the situation still resides within me because now I’m a little less open with sharing my ideas-because as I stated, with me its no talking just to talk. I get emotionally invested in my work/plans/ideas. I find it difficult to trust people from the area because I feel they are all have some underlying agenda or lack of vision to see where it is I’m coming from. I know I need to let this go because it stifles my creativity. Holding onto shit like this only hurts me-the other people involved have long sense moved on. I know that I can not reach my goals alone-I have to work with others but I’m so leary of getting involved with other folk. LOL! I can’t make movies alone after all! I’ve got to come to terms with what happened, let it go, accept the lesson and move on. I know that I’m doing nothing but preventing new things to come in by dragging my feelings around the situation along with me. I do not want to take these feelings of “feeling some kind of way” about this situation into 2011. I will work on it and do what needs to be done to release myself from the hold this has on me.
December 4 – Wonder. How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year? (Author: Jeffrey Davis)
I had to really think of where my sense of wonder came in 2010. It hit me last night. One of my favorite brass bands was in Baton Rouge last night and as I let the beat take me over, I remembered that this year my wonder came embracing my unemployment. Since I got my first job at age 14, I became a bit of a workaholic. VERY focused on my goals which is great, but I didn’t allow much time for things outside of work. Everything about my life when I moved to L.A. revolved around work-all of my friends were co-workers and we talked to no end about work (we had fun too but work was always the focus). I thought this was just me-I’d say so often things like, “I love to work,” “I’ll never retire,” “No one can outwork me.” And while I am a beast when it comes to jobs I enjoy, time with no job wasn’t so bad.
I didn’t hold a full-time job from Jan-March and during that time I allowed myself to do some things I always thought about. Now let’s be clear, I worked just not full time. I thought Barbizon a couple weekends a month, did freelance projects and lived off my earnings from my previous job-I wasn’t just chilling. But I did have a whole lot of free time. One of my favorite things was to go and write from coffee shops. I’d get up when I felt like it, go for a walk, then head to my favorite spot (Mojo’s on Magazine) and explore the world wide web and write about the things going on in my life. I got into music. I became a fan of the brass bands and frequented the Maple Leaf and Les Bon Temps (two spots that feature bands on Tuesdays and Thursdays that I heart). I allowed myself to take risks with my business-I did PR for a local singer (who signed a label deal by the way on Friday!!!). I rearranged my furniture, read books and watched old movies. I got a library card so those books and movies free! I used that time to connect with the part of me I didn’t see very often and I loved it. I realized that I didn’t love working 24-7 as much as I thought I did because when I was off I was much more free to enjoy life. When money got funny I was VERY ready to return to work but I went back with a little less pressure to work all the time as I had had before.
This time off made me realize how wondrous life is when there’s time to do what I love. Now I’m back to work-12-14hour days/at least 5 days a week. The difference is now I know how to make time to be more balanced. No more all work all the time for me. My activities are varied and I find time to create which provides tons of wonder in my world!
December 3 – Moment. Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors). (Author: Ali Edwards)
I’ve had a ton of memorable moments that felt invigorating but I’m gonna have to pick January 24, 2010. It was the day the SAINTS played the Vikings in the NFC game to see who’d go to the SuperBowl. I had to work until 6pm at Barbizon that day. When I got off I met friends at one of their friends houses to watch the game. There was a ton of good food and good times. It was a great atmosphere to watch the game. During the fourth quarter it was so back and forth up and down and then we won. The Saints were going to the Super Bowl! Me and my one friend rushed over to my apartment and I threw on my Purdue sweatshirt (alma matter of the quarterback Drew Brees!) and we headed to the French Quarter. There was a TON of people there! You made eye contact with everyone and the words WHO DAT were spoken to everyone you passed. I felt alive because it was just genuine joy and love in the spirit of everyone I saw and was around that night. I felt proud of the team-I’d been a long time Drew Brees fan since my days of working at Purdue and to see him make it that far was amazing. I was in New Orleans, my new city and it felt like home. I felt like there was no limit to what I could do. I felt on the verge of making all of my dreams come true. I felt like I was exactly where I was supposed to be. I felt FREE! I felt excited! I felt more alive than I had ever felt before!
December 2 Writing. What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it? (Author: Leo Babauta)
At least once a day I say, think or type that I don’t have time to write. I feel like this is detrimental to my writing goals because I’m continually voicing I have no time to do it. I can eliminate this…I can change that pattern and find time to write something everyday. And the truth is I do write most days. No I’m not completing chapters in my memoir or scenes in my short film but I blog daily. I’ve got to start acknowledging what I AM doing instead of what is not getting done.