3 Ways to feel better about New Year’s Resolutions

The New Year is a time for new beginnings and resolutions, 
but for many people it also carries a large amount of shame and guilt. Maybe you set a resolution last year and didn't keep it? Or you view resolutions as something you should be 
doing, but thinking about them makes your cringe. 

Below are 3 things you can do to get through the 
New Year feeling less guilty about resolutions.

1. Don’t let others pressure you. 

New Year resolutions are personal and the best goals are ones that you chose, not because it’s a good idea, but because it’s something you’re excited about. Don’t let society or other people guilt you into setting resolutions that you wouldn't otherwise chose for yourself. Also, be wary of people and businesses that are out to make a profit during this time. Many of these companies will use shaming tactics, disguised as motivation, to try and get you to purchase something from them.

2. Stop saying the word ‘should’. 

In our home ‘should’ is a cuss word, which we refer to as “the other s-word”. That’s because it’s a word that carries a lot shame. When it comes to New Year resolutions you may be telling yourself, “you should do this, and you should do that.” These statements imply that you are trying to guilt yourself into changing. Making and keeping a New Year’s resolution is easier when the desire for that change comes from a place of excitement and love- instead of guilt. Often just being aware of when you are using the word ‘should’ can be a red-flag that the resolution isn’t what you deeply desire, but something that you feel pressured into doing. 

3. Learn to let go of perfectionism. 

Often, when people are striving for perfection they have what has been termed “all-or-nothing thinking.” This means that once they slip up on their goal, they give up on it. Life isn't perfect and that’s 
ok. When setting goals, it’s important to remember that you’re going to make mistakes and have set backs. Anticipate what factors may contribute to those slip-ups, and then make a plan of how you’ll handle them when they happen. 

I hope this list will help prevent some of the guilt that is sometimes associated with New Year’s Resolutions because setting goals is an important part of life. It allows us the opportunity to better ourselves and can help us be more optimistic for the future.

Do you wanna read more about this? 
Check out my post from last New Year.


What are your feelings towards New Year's Resolutions?

Happy List 2

Merry Christmas Eve! 
Here's a list of moments that made me happy this past week:

*Spending time with one of my oldest and sweetest friends.
We've been friends sense 4th grade, and she brought with her a "magazine" that we had created back in the good ol' days. 
It was hilarious! - I love her for hanging onto it all of these years. 

*Going to Ikea and day-dreaming about all their pretty things. 

*Hearing the song "Raise 'Em Up" by Keith Urban and Eric Church while driving to work one morning. 

*The missionaries stopped by unexpectedly and 
we sat in our living room and cut out snowflakes 
while they shared a message with us about Christmas.
I think they all turned out really well. 

*Catching up with some of my co-workers-turned-friends
 from working at the credit union. 
It's always so much fun being with them.    

*Trying a Chick-Fil-A Peppermint Chocolate Chip Milkshake 
for the first time (aka Christmas in a cup.)  

*This text message from J.R. : 

*Listening to old records on a record player 
for the first time in my life. 

*Staying up way to late and wrapping all our Christmas gifts.

*Sipping hot chocolate topped with whip cream and listening to J.R. sing along to Christmas songs.  

And last but-not-least,

*This Christmas video, that may have made me teary eyed:
(If you can't view the video on my blog, click here for the link) 


What made you happy this week?
I would love to know. 

Quotes about Love and Fear

In my last post about love and fear, I said I would follow up 
with a list of quotes that I've been collecting. 
So... here it is!  
Feel free to Read'em as slow and as many times as you want. 
(I've read them at least fifty times.)   

"There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life." –John Lennon

"The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and with out fear for newer and richer experience."  -Eleanor Roosevelt 

"drifters are people who dwell in fear and neglect to use their minds to choose their way out. Drifters let other people and situations influence their emotions and they mindlessly react to life with the same old patterns over and over."  -Life Coach Kimberly Giles. 

Fear does not prevent death. It prevents life. 
 -Naguib Mahfouz

image found here

“...to be in a relationship with God is to be loved purely and furiously. And a person who thinks himself unlovable cannot be in a relationship with God because he can't accept who God is; a Being that is love. . . And so I have come to understand that strength, inner strength, comes from receiving love as much as it comes from giving it.” –Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality 

“The most often repeated commandment in the Bible is 'Do not fear.' It's in there over two hundred times. That means a couple of things, if you think about it. It means we are going to be afraid, and it means we shouldn't let fear boss us around. Before I realized we were supposed to fight fear, I thought of fear as a subtle suggestion in our subconscious designed to keep us safe, or more important, keep us from getting humiliated. And I guess it serves that purpose. But fear isn't only a guide to keep us safe; it's also a manipulative emotion that can trick us into living a boring life.”
–Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality


*There is no fear in love, but perfect love 
casteth out fear. (1 John 4:18)

*Look unto me in every thought; 
doubt not, fear not. (D&C 6:36)

*Fear not I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: 
I will strengthen thee; I will help thee. (Isaiah 41:10)

*Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the 

Lord am with you, and will stand by you. (D&C 68:6)


Is there anything else that you would add to this list?
I would love to know! 

Happy List 1

This was the first week that I recorded  a "Happy List", 
and it was a good week to start because a lot happened. 

J.R.'s work had their company Christmas party at Energy Solutions Arena where we ate some delicious food, had some hilarious conversations, and got to watch the Jazz Game. 
His work tries to make their employees feel appreciated, 
and they gave same encouraging speeches and wonderful gifts. 

This week was also my nieces first birthday party! 
She loves to hug her little cousin, and whenever he cries she tries to comfort him by patting his back. They are seriously the cutest! 

My heart just melts.  

I got home from work one night and 
found these under our Christmas tree.
J.R. always writes the cutest gift tags. 

I know it's hard to read in the picture but it says, 
From: your husband
To: my amazing beautiful wife.


For the past two years we had been borrowing an extra tree from J.R.'s sister, but this year we bought our very own Christmas tree. 

J.R. set it up the day we bought it and 
then we decorated it a couple days later. 
Except we never put the star on top  - I don't know why.
But on Sunday we finally got the star on and 
now our decorations are complete.  


We normally go over to J.R.'s parents house each week for Sunday dinner, but J.R.'s work had given him a turkey back in November for Thanksgiving and he decided that he wanted to try and make dinner for his parents on Sunday instead.  

Cooking a turkey for the very first time was 
entertaining to-say-the-least and I'm not gonna lie,
J.R. did most all of it by himself, and it was amazing! 
Also, I think his parents appreciated us inviting them over. 
(and not having to cook)

Here's a list of a couple more things
 that brought me happiness this week.

*J.R.'s dad made the tastiest chocolate cake I have ever eaten. 
*My mom made her famous Christmas fudge. 
*Eating "Christmas Bark Candy" for the very first time. 
(Good food makes me happy - don't judge me. lol)
*Delivering our Christmas "neighbor gifts".
*Going ice skating at the Gallivan Center 
with the youth from church
*Going to Christopher's Prime Steakhouse during 
work for our office Christmas celebration.
*Getting home late one night and gently waking J.R. up to tell him I was home and, without opening his eyes, he asked in the sleepiest most concerned voice, "You're safe now?"


Thanks for reading. 
What made you happy this week? 

Love and Fear

There is a popular blog and Facebook  
page called Humans of New York
Brandon, the man behind the blog, set out to photograph 10,000 New Yorkers, and sometime along the way he started interviewing people and including their quotes with the pictures. 

What I love most about the site is how honest 
and unintentionally poetic people are. 
Brandon has taken these "ordinary" strangers and shown how everyone has an interesting story to tell. Some stories are beautiful, some are poignant, and others almost tragic. The blog is a good reminder that everyone we meet has a history and some unique advice to give. 

As readers we don't usually know what types of questions Brandon has asked. We just get to see how people reply, so it feels like they just happen to be sharing something interesting about their lives with you. I like to read the stories and  guess what questions Brandon had asked them, and I've complied a list of questions I think he most commonly asks:

What was the happiest moment of your life?
What was the worst moment of your life?
What do you remember most about your
 mother from your childhood?
What do you remember most about your 
father from your childhood?
How did you meet your significant other?
 What do you do for a living?
What's your biggest goal in life?
What's your biggest weakness?
If you could give a large group of people advice, 
what would it be?

I thought it would be important to ask myself each of these questions, and while I don't have answers for half of them, there is one that I want to write about today. Which is the question: If you could give a large group of people advice, what would it be? 

I would tell people to live life from a place of love and faith - instead of fear. And more importantly to never make life decisions based on fear. Make them based on love. 

I'm definitely not fearless, and I may have written this 
as more of a reminder to myself than for anyone else to read, because it can be easy to live in fear.

I'm sure that you can think of your own examples of when you or someone you know has made a choice out of fear instead of faith. Maybe you know someone who entered into a marriage not necessarily out of love, but because they were afraid. Or you know someone who hates their job but they won't look for a new one because they're afraid of change.

I know all of us are afraid of something - it's just a part of life.
 But I also know that people who face their fears and
 make life choices out of love and faith are the happiest people.


What advice would you give to a large group of people? 

In the near future I'm going to make post about all the 
quotes I've collected about love and fear, I hope you'll like them. 

This has been published check it out here.  

Life Lately

Sorry I haven't posted for a few weeks. 
Life got really busy there for a little bit, but I'm done with finals for this semester, so I plan on posting more consistently. 

(and please excuse my blurry phone pic)

I've been reading Emily's blog over at emmyjake.com and every week she has been posting a "Happy List". Which is a list of things she is grateful for or things that bring her joy. They are usually small everyday moments or simple pleasures, but I've really enjoyed reading them. And she has inspired me to make my own happy lists.  

I think that it's important to take notice of all the good things that happen each day, because I know if I'm not mindful of them then it can be easy to take those special moments for granted.  

So get ready for my first "Happy List" next week!  

(And make sure to check out Emily's most recent Happy List here)

Do you keep a list of things you're grateful for 
or things that make you happy? 
I'd love to know. 

Thanks for reading!