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Ridiculously Cute Halloween Costumes: Pet Obsessed!

Ridiculously Cute Halloween Costumes: Pet Obsessed! | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it
Twenty five awesome Halloween pet costumes. Check them out! ~ V.B.   (Click on the image or title above to view original post.)
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Wait 24 hours before getting mad and reacting about anything

Wait 24 hours before getting mad and reacting about anything | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

Wait 24 hours before getting mad and reacting about anything. If it doesn’t bother you in 24 hours time, it probably isn’t important enough to get mad over.

    When you feel extremely angry, wouldn’t it be amazing to throw a juvenile temper tantrum without someone having you committed?

    I admit, when I see a kid losing his marbles in the cereal aisle, I don’t cringe. I envy.

    At a certain age you start holding back on the immediacy of your emotions, and who can blame you? These days, being too happy is considered naïve, being too sad is an automatic clinical diagnosis, and being too angry is a complete waste of energy.

    You’ve heard it all. Suck it up. Let it go. Move on.

    Anger isn’t worth it. Right?

    Wrong.

    Anger is the most important emotion you have. When you’re angry, it’s a red flag that something needs to change, and when you’re extremely angry, something needs to change right now.

    There are two ways you can deal with anger depending on the situation at hand: as it happens, or as a building block toward bigger life changes.

    In the moment, decide which fork in the road you should take, then use one or more of the options below:

When You Feel Extremely Angry…

1. Let it Happen

You’ve been given a wide spectrum of emotions for a reason, so use them. Suppressing your anger is unhealthy. It can lead to ulcers and heart disease, never mind the damage it can do to your relationships and overall sense of well-being.

When I feel extremely angry and find myself holding back, I just think of Meg Ryan in French Kiss:

    A healthy person is someone who expresses their feelings… Express, not repress… You know what happens to people who shut everybody out? They fester. Inside. Fester and rot.

This might seem strange, but try it! The next time you’re not expressing yourself, just picture a little Meg Ryan on your shoulder: “Fester fester fester, rot rot rot.”

If you attempt to hide or ignore your anger, it won’t go away. It might subside for a certain amount of time, but eventually it will manifest itself elsewhere.

Don’t apologize for or excuse your anger. You’re angry for a valid reason, and acknowledging it is the first step toward resolving what’s bothering you.

2. Separate Emotion from Action

You’ll likely want to pull a Godzilla and destroy everything in your path, but it’s important to take a step back and feel the emotion before you take action on it, especially when you feel extremely angry—let the anger take its course. Prematurely deciding to take action may cause more angst than waiting to give perspective to your anger.

After you’ve cooled off, you might find:

    the situation wasn’t as big a deal as you thought.
    in the long run it will lead to better things for you.
    it will take more than an outburst to solve the issue.

Or, you might find your anger was triggered by something completely different.

3. Identify Why

Extreme anger typically stems from a build-up of smaller annoyances. It’s like lighting a match: a person or situation rubs you the wrong way and your suppressed emotions flood to the surface. What’s awkward about this level of anger is when it strikes: it tends to hit at inconvenient times, such as while you’re at work or out with loved ones.

The problem isn’t the delay in dealing with your anger, it’s when the delay turns into avoiding it altogether. Either the initial rage subsides and you try to shrug it off, or you’re so consumed by your schedule that you simply add it to the pile of unresolved issues.

The next time you feel extremely angry, don’t just promise yourself you’re going to deal with it at a more appropriate time—pencil in alone time. Make it happen.

4. Cool Off with Exercise

A great outlet to reduce tension is physical activity: use your anger as fuel for a healthier lifestyle.

Test various workouts and figure out which are most effective at calming your anger. Some people prefer aggressive exercise, such as kickboxing or running, while others find quieter activities more beneficial, such as walking, gardening, or (gasp!) cleaning.

5. Delay Your Reaction

If you’re in a situation where dealing with your anger immediately isn’t an option, inhale deeply. As you exhale, count to ten or repeat a phrase that helps you relax. Keep doing so until you feel centered again.

6. Distract Yourself

If you turn your attention elsewhere, it will help you focus on the present moment and prioritize your emotions.

Think of a pleasant memory, read a book, find your happy place (or borrow Happy Gilmore if you have to).

7. Do Your Homework

If you feel extremely angry because of something that’s out of your control, like losing a promotion to someone else, do your homework before reacting. Look beyond what’s happened and find out why it has. Look past someone’s actions and look at their intentions: most of the time, they haven’t intended to hurt you.

There are always underlying circumstances—a cause and effect—and it’s crucial to look at a situation from every angle so all perspectives are taken into account. Nothing diffuses anger like logic.

If afterward you’re still angry, find out how others have moved on from similar situations; be the one to come out a better person.

8. Don’t Play the Victim

The worst thing you can do is blame the entire universe for your problems.

Yes, this person did you wrong, and sure, that situation could have worked out better, but you have a mind of your own: your life isn’t happening to you, so why are you acting like it is?

Until you take responsibility for your part in what’s happened—how your reaction to this person and that situation lead you to where you are today—you’ll just keep making the same mistakes and fanning the fire instead of putting it out.

Don’t ask, “Why me?” Ask, “What now?”

9. Find a Safe Haven

We all have our “spot”: a primary place we go to think or relax. This can be a room in your home that’s just for you or a piece of the forest you’ve claimed as your own. It doesn’t matter where this spot is, as long as going there makes you feel calm and helps you re-energize.

When you feel extremely angry, you’re physically and emotionally overstimulated—the demands on your time are inevitably getting to you. If the situation allows you to leave and take a time-out, do so and immediately visit your spot.

Sometimes all you need is a change in environment (and pace) to calm yourself down and gain perspective. During these quiet moments, see if you can think of ways to cut down or cut out the triggers that are making you angry.

10. Look Before You Leap

If there’s a chance someone has betrayed you, your first instinct will likely be to confront and lash out at them.

While I’m a believer in always following your instincts, in this instance I encourage you to step back before confronting them and evaluate the situation: did you hear this through the grapevine? Does it seem plausible or out of character for them? What will you say when you confront them? What do you want to know?

Line your cards up and give them a chance; you don’t want to automatically assume the worst.

If it’s someone you’ve had problems with in the past, do your best to be specific about your anger. Focus on the situation at hand.

If you batch together all the anger you’ve ever felt toward them, this will obviously lead to more anger, and a much larger argument than necessary.

11. Discuss Your Anger with Someone Trustworthy

When you’re having a frustrating day or going through something that’s causing ongoing stress in your life, find someone trustworthy to talk to. This can be a family member, a close friend, or someone you work with. Even if they don’t offer specific advice, the simple act of sharing what’s bothering you might help you find a solution.

There have been many occasions where I went into a conversation asking a question, and found the answer during my stream of consciousness rant.

12. Listen to Music

Music is one of the best things to have in your dealing-with-anger arsenal for several reasons:

    Listening to aggressive music that matches your mood allows you to work through the emotion productively.
    Listening to slower music (such as acoustic) allows you to slow your thought process and calm down.
    Listening to specific songs with lyrics that relate to what you’re going through help you put your own experiences into perspective.
    Turning up the volume allows you to drown out your thought process when “the little things” are irritating and distracting you.

Decide whether you’re going to use music to work through or distract from your anger, and hit play.

13. Write an E-mail

After you’ve argued with someone, are wronged by them, or your anger toward them is lingering longer than it should be, create your own closure by writing them an e-mail.

Write out your fury in stream of consciousness format, then continue to revise the e-mail as you think of new things you would’ve liked to say at the time.

Get everything out of your system about the issue on your own time, as the words come to you. Once you have nothing more to say and you’ve perfected the e-mail… delete it.

Use erasing the e-mail as a symbolic gesture toward letting go of what’s bothering you. Trust me, you’ll feel a lot lighter afterward.

14. Make a List

Make a list of all the things, people, and situations that make you angry. Be as specific and detailed as possible, and then rate each item from 1 – 5, with 1 equaling Annoyed and 5 Infuriated. Next, determine whether you can cut back on it in your life or cut it out entirely.

With the items that have to stay, plan ways to reframe how you feel about them so they don’t send you off the deep end. Do everything you can to phase out what infuriates you, no matter how long it takes—nothing is worth jeopardizing your heart health.

15. Disconnect from Your Triggers

There are always little things that set us off, no matter how trivial.

Me? Shopping on weekends turns me into a total nutcase. (I won’t even get into the story about the guy who held everyone up trying to return a microwave he apparently hadn’t used, despite the fact that there was food stuck in it!) Not only do I not shop on weekends, I never shop during peak hours: this allows me to fully enjoy my shopping experience.

Be mindful of your triggers. It doesn’t matter why something makes you tick, just recognize that it does and do what’s necessary to work around it—for yourself, and for those who cross your path.

16. Redecorate

Your home should always be a place that relaxes you. If your home feels less homey and more mental institution-y, take the time to turn it into an oasis.

Declutter, use stress-reducing colors, and why not try feng shui—it couldn’t hurt, right?

17. Watch a Funny Movie/Show

When you’ve tried everything and still can’t shake your anger, why not laugh it off? (Literally.)

Laughter soothes tension, encourages muscle relaxation, and lightens your mental load. While there’s a lot of controversy surrounding the studies on how laughter improves your health, who cares? Laughing doesn’t suck. Anger does. Period.

18. Put Yourself First

Many of us don’t put our health first, even though it’s on our minds constantly.

But if you become more mindful about doing so—cutting back on things like caffeine and nicotine, getting more sleep, exercising regularly, and decreasing stress—guaranteed your emotional fuse wouldn’t be tested as often.

19. Do Something Relaxing

What activities do you enjoy most? Which ones put you completely at ease? Are there activities that you love but never make time for?

Reconnect with the things you love to do. Doing what you enjoy will make you feel more fulfilled, and feeling fulfilled will automatically lessen your desire to feel angry.

20. Use Anger to Fuel Change

I love anger because I’ve mastered how to use it, and you can too.

There was a time when my life turned out exactly how I swore it never would, and I was so exhausted from the simple act of surviving I had no idea how to make the necessary changes.

Then something happened, something small that was as insignificant as burning your toast in the morning, and that was it. I was done. I had a Scarlett O’Hara moment and refused to live one more day with things the way they were. That anger propelled me to where I am now: building the writing career I’ve always wanted, surrounded by everything and everyone I care about. It gave me the adrenaline rush necessary to see things through.

But maybe you’re not burnt out like I was. Maybe it’s fear holding you back: A fear of failure. A fear of success. A fear of disappointing others. Whatever your fear, anger trumps fear in the rock-paper-scissors of life. It will productively push you to where you want to be, but you have to let it.

Own your anger. Don’t let it own you.

 

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

Good stuff.

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Don't Worry Baby

The Beach Boys singing Don't Worry Baby released on May 11th, 1964
Vilma Bonilla's insight:

I'm on a Beach Boys kick. Good tune on any given day. This and Good Vibrations. ~ Don't worry Baby, enjoy! #LoveIt

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Warm weather updos

Warm weather updos | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

We've compiled five updos for short, medium and long hair styles, just in time for spring.

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

It's about time for warm weather and some awesome updos! Click on the image or title above to view the original post and pics.

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Inner peace, calmness, relaxation, life balance

Inner peace, calmness, relaxation, life balance | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

 

by Marissa Håkansson

Inner peace is not something we need to ‘attain’; it’s present within us at all times. However, experiencing inner peace can sometimes seem difficult.

We get so busy in our minds and lives that we end up feeling disconnected from our bodies and inner self. Along with that, we lose touch with our innate sense of peacefulness and ease.

So how do we connect with our sense of inner peace?

Well, there’s nothing we need to “do” per se to feel peaceful and at ease. Peacefulness arises more out of a non-doing. Out of our ability to simply ‘be’ with ourself and feel connected at a deep level.

Because many of us are used to ‘doing’ rather than being connected to our inner self, sometimes we need a little help; something that will gently guide us in the direction of inner peace.

In my life, I use four main pathways to help me reconnect with inner peace.

I call these ‘pathways’, because in and of themselves, they won’t  necessarily result in a state of peacefulness. However, if you engage in them consciously (when you’re genuinely present with yourself and the experience), you’ll find they lead you in the right direction. At least, that’s what I’ve found to be true for myself.

I find that the more I integrate these pathways into my life, the more naturally I feel balanced and well within myself. By engaging with them, they prompt a sense of openness and freedom within my whole body and self. And from that place, I  can connect with the stillness and inner peace that resides at the core of who I am.

The pathways that can support you in creating inner peace are:

1. Quietness

Creating quiet spaces in your day is one of the most transformative practices you can integrate into your life. By prioritising being quiet, and resting in that quietness, you’ll naturally create a deeper sense of life balance.

I know this to be true from my own journey of managing stress and experiencing exhaustion from a busy life. By introducing quiet spaces into my life, I gradually learnt to create relaxation, ease and wellbeing in my life.

I still create and prioritise quiet space in my life now. While the way I create that quiet space may look a little different each day, in essence there’s nothing for me to do other than be with myself and my experience in that moment.

2. Nature

Nature continues to be a haven that helps restore a deeper sense of inner peace. When I  feel the presence of nature around me, I feel connected within myself. Being in touch physically with nature helps me feel grounded.

If I’m struggling with my thoughts and finding it difficult to be present in my body, I know that being in nature will help me reconnect with what’s real. And from there, it’s easier for me to be calm and connect with a sense of inner peace.

3. Movement

Moving my body consciously through practices such as stretching, yoga, walking and dance immediately help me feel present and connected to my body. And in doing so, naturally evoke a sense of inner peace.

When I feel particularly ‘stuck’ in my thinking or disconnected from myself, consciously moving my body opens up the possibility of experiencing deeper calm and ease.

There’s nothing I need to do other than tune into my body and follow what movement feels intuitively right for me. When I make conscious movement a daily practice, I embody peacefulness within the whole of who I am.

4. Music

When I listen to music that inspires and moves me, I naturally connect to a deeper part of myself. It might be quiet, meditative music, or something entirely different, depending on what feels good to me in the moment.

Like the other pathways, music effortlessly brings me back into connection with a sense of inner peace within my whole self.

I find that if I’m genuinely present with music, and feel the music immerse my whole body and self, it creates an environment that’s both healing and incredibly empowering. It helps me be present to what is real and moving within me.

These are the pathways that help guide me into a space of inner calm and peace. Perhaps you resonate with these, or perhaps you have your own ways of deepening the experience of peacefulness within yourself.

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

We always have a choice. ~ "Inner peace is not something we need to ‘attain’; it’s present within us at all times."

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In Your Eyes

Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes Lyrics: love I get so lost, sometimes days pass and this emptiness fills my heart when I want to run away I drive off in my car ...

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I see the light the heat...

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How to speak strategically

How to speak strategically | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

 

It had been three weeks since my throat started to feel sore, and it wasn’t getting better. The pain was most acute when I spoke. So I decided to spend a few days speaking as little as possible. Every time I had the urge to say something, I paused for a moment to question whether it was worth irritating my throat.

This made me acutely aware of when and how I use my voice. Which led me to a surprising discovery: I spend considerable energy working against my own best interests. And if my experience listening to others is any indication, so do you.

In my observations, we speak for three main reasons:

        To help ourselves
        To help others
        To connect with each other

That’s not surprising. All three of those objectives are legitimate and worthwhile.

What is surprising though is how frequently we fool ourselves into thinking we’re achieving those objectives when, in reality, we’re thwarting them. The more I listened, the more I noticed how we undermine our own interests.

Frequently, I had the urge to gossip about someone else. I realized that I did this to help myself (I will feel better if I think I’m better than that person) and to connect with the other gossipers. But clearly that would distance me from the people about whom I was gossiping. In fact, it would probably even distance me from my fellow gossipers too; who could trust someone who talked behind other people’s back? My attempt to strengthen relationships was, instead, hurting them.

I also had the urge to share information when I thought it would be helpful to someone. That’s a productive reason to speak. But several times I had the urge to say something simply to show that I knew the answer. Or to get attention. Or to increase my power in the group. It became clear to me that my urge to speak in those moments came from my desire to feel special. I wanted people to like me and to think highly of me. But who likes the guy trying to show off?

Sometimes I wanted to help myself by getting the answer to a question, or making sure I was counted in a decision. That’s useful. But other times, I just wanted to make sure my voice was heard over the din of the other voices. I caught myself wanting to speak over someone in a meeting. Or arguing a point to get others to agree with me so I’d feel more confident in my own opinion (which I’m hearing a lot this political season). Is that really helping someone else?

In fact, I was amazed at how often I wanted to speak simply to assure myself that I was here. I had a role. I was noticed.

As I sat silently, trying to preserve my voice, I had the opportunity to notice how and when other people spoke as well. And I noticed all the same tendencies.

If I were to reduce our counter-productive speaking to a single motivation, it would be this: We often speak to make ourselves feel better in the short-term.

But life and relationships are long-term. And when we gossip, raise our voices, speak behind other people’s backs, offer unsolicited opinions, or make jokes at other people’s expense we’re isolating ourselves over time.

There was some good news in my experience of talking less: I listened more. And listening, it turned out, was a much more productive way to achieve my speaking objectives than speaking.

When I listened, I helped myself, helped others and built relationships at least as effectively as I did speaking and with much less collateral damage.

I’m obviously not suggesting we stop speaking; we can’t achieve our three objectives unless we do. We need ask for things. We need to share information. And there are a number of ways — like offering compliments and rephrasing what we’re hearing — we can build relationships through speech.

I am, however, suggesting that we think ahead — long term — when we’re about to say something in the moment. And that, before speaking, we ask ourselves one simple question: Is what I’m about to say going to detract from one of the three reasons I speak? If the answer is yes, consider saving your voice.

My throat is better now and I can speak as much as I want. Which left me feeling a little nervous; now that I know how easy it is to be self-defeating, will I keep myself on the productive side of the speaking equation?

Thankfully, the sore throat left me with a gift: the memory of a sore throat.

These past few days, when I get the urge to talk, I find myself doing a little calculation in my head: If I only have so much speaking I can do in a day, is this thing I’m about to say a worthwhile use of my voice?

What’s amazing is that most of the time I immediately know.

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

Make your words count, long term.

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Wise Quote

Wise Quote | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it
Vilma Bonilla's insight:

"The problem with that approach is that [life] is too dynamic. Situations rarely repeat. Human behavior is diverse, erratic, and often unpredictable." ~ http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/04/how-to-override-your-default-reactions-in-tough-moments/

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, April 16, 1:37 PM

This is well said.

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Poor Leadership – by Anna Johansson

Poor Leadership – by Anna Johansson | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

No ship can set sail without a captain, and the same is true of businesses. Without the right leadership, a business will almost certainly fail even if the best possible employees are on hand. There’s a reason leaders in organizations get paid the big bucks.

Sometimes it’s the wrong fit, someone leaders get burned out and don’t step down or sometimes the leaders had no right being there in the first place. Still not convinced? Take a look at these five businesses that were destroyed because of poor leadership. They might still be active and flourishing today if someone else was at the helm.

1. Netflix

Who had the bright idea to split Netflix into separate paid services? The leadership, of course, and it was to detrimental effects. Netflix had the potential to take over and revolutionize the video industry, and in fact that’s exactly what it did when it took down Blockbuster. Nobody saw RedBox coming or the popularity of paid online streaming like Hulu Plus – including Netflix – until it was too late.

2. Blackberry

Remember when Blackberry was the ultimate status symbol, and nobody could fathom having any other type of smartphone? Blackberry has a history of nepotism, which often leads to poor leadership. The company also promotes people from within based on tenure rather than on skills and potential to actually lead. When competence isn’t the primary reason for a promotion, a company will surely sink.

3. Enron

This may be an extreme example of leadership gone corrupt, but it happened and is likely happening (perhaps on smaller scales) at other companies today. A number of Enron executives were found guilty for a variety of charges and are now serving long prison sentences. The takeaway lesson here is that they got away with it for years, and corrupt leadership caused financial ruin for hundreds of people.

4. Citi

Vikram Pandit simply didn’t have what it took to save Citi, which is why the company is now in bailout and basically owned by the government. He’s an example of a leader who should have never been put in the position, and should have had the foresight and courage to step down before taking down everyone else with him.

5. Merrill

Stan O’Neal wasn’t popular to begin with, and his incredible cost-cutting tactics earned him plenty of enemies. However, as the CEO of Merrill, he also became an ouster and he was in charge when Merrill had the biggest losses in nearly 100 years. He was then caught trying to merge with Wachovia behind the board’s back.

………………………………………………

It’s clear that poor leadership is poison to a business. However, keep in mind that it’s also important for everyone in a company to be invested. Many of these disasters could have been prevented if the leaders weren’t blindly trusted and given the keys to the kingdom. It’s a two-way street with both leaders and subordinates being held accountable.

Figuring out and strategizing leadership is something that should start in a business plan when a business is just beginning to stretch its limbs. Failure to plan and not having SOP in place are triggers for poor leadership, but it’s just so easy to skip over these steps in the early stages. Business owners too often think they can get around to these kinds of details later, but later never seems to come. Perhaps if more startups focused on streamlining management protocol, foundations would be sturdier.

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

There are plenty more examples of poor leadership. The most egregious error by far, however, is not holding leaders accountable or supporting their efforts. Don't be surprised when employees leave.

 

For what you tolerate will continue. People will treat you, the way you allow them to treat you.

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Fields of Gold

Music video by Sting performing Fields Of Gold. YouTube view counts pre-VEVO: 5,830,897. (C) 1993 A&M Records
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Rediscover the beauty of life

Rediscover the beauty of life | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

“If we look at the world with a love of life, the world will reveal its beauty to us.” ~Daisaku Ikeda

As kids, we are beings of wonder. Spending hours inspecting blades of grass, hoping to discover lady beetles, rocking fairy wings or a cape at the shops because we feel like it, laughing for the silliest reasons, and finding unadulterated happiness in special treats, our favorite cartoon, or a game of hide and seek.

As teenagers, we often become too cool to find joy in the simplest things but still manage it hanging out with friends, falling in love with celebrities, and listening to that one song over and over again.

But, by the time we reach full-blown adulthood, those whimsical childhood traits may be as forgotten as an invisible friend.

As grown ups we’re allowed to do all the fun things we spent high school wishing we could do, and yet, we get caught up in jobs we hate, paying bills, sitting in traffic, and sometimes ‘just getting by.’

I know this feeling, because I’ve been there.

And then, one day, I decided it was time to stop for a second and find a way to get back to a time when life was more joy-filled. Rediscovering the beauty of life, instead of focusing on the ugliness, the negativity, or the laborious pains of just getting by.


The Beginning Of Change

Since I was fifteen, I wanted to work in film and television. I did my high school work experience at a post-production company and decided I would work there one day.

I graduated top of my class studying film and TV in high school, I was (and still am) a total film geek, I studied it at university. And then landed by dream job at the company I’d experienced five years earlier.

I could not believe it.

From that point onward, I went from contract to contract working some crazy hours (like 2PM to 2AM shifts for an entire month).

I went through periods of no work between contracts (and, as a result no money), being morally torn between staying true to myself and doing what it takes to butter people up for the good jobs, working on shows I hated, working with people who made my skin crawl, getting praised by my superiors but being ignored by those doing the promoting, and continuing to strive for a dream job that felt like it was never going to happen.

Of course, the perks of the job were fantastic—working with some great people, every day being interesting and unexpected, traveling, and working in what I still consider to be a really fun industry.

But when something stops serving you, it becomes so much harder to see the good from the downright terrible.

This all culminated when I landed the producing job I’d been working toward. Oh, what an achievement! You can imagine my excitement after so many years of working my way up to the job I’d always wanted. The celebration that followed the promotion was…non-existent.

I was earning good money. I had the job title. I was finally getting somewhere. And I didn’t even stop to acknowledge it because all I could see was that I still wasn’t happy.

A friend rang to congratulate me and I didn’t even notice.

I was so overwhelmed by the anticlimax of it all. And that’s when I knew something needed to change.


It’s Time To Do More of What Makes Me (and You) Happy

It may seem like a ridiculous notion to some, but I honestly and truly believe that when you see these habits of what feels like never ending complaining, whining, and frustration then it’s time to make some changes.

Some people are totally cool to accept that this is all there is, but not me. (And maybe not you, either).

When I realized that too much of my time was spent unhappy, I decided to do whatever I could to change that.

I changed jobs as soon as possible. I started working with people who meant the world to me in a role that was much better suited to me. This gave me room to breathe and come up for air after ten years on a career path that I decided I hated.

I started to see what I loved again.

And even if I was still trying to decide what to do, this made it easier to finally be happy. And I became aware of how I could do more of this on an everyday basis.

I set dinner dates with friends on Monday nights to make the beginning of the week oh-so-enjoyable. I took advantage of coffee runs at work and turned them into glorious sun walks. I found joy in the simple pleasure of sitting in the park on the weekend just chatting or reading.

I noticed I was changing. Sure sometimes stress still popped it’s head up and challenges arose, but I was becoming better equipped to handle the unknown because I had simply brought more joy into my life. The unexpected inconveniences became less frustrating, and the simplest pleasures became more obvious.

The power of needing to change allowed me to find ways of doing more of what made me happy.


Rediscover the Beauty of Life

I’ll be completely honest with you: this is not something that just happened to me overnight. I’m still working toward my new career path and finding what I really want out of life. I still get frustrated or upset sometimes, and I still have a lot of work to do.

But something changed the day I decided to take life into my own hands and seek out the beauty of life.

I became more aware.

I started attracting more happy moments and wonderful people to me because I actively sought them out, and what I put out came back to me tenfold.

I seek out the good stuff instead of dwelling on the not-so-good.

And, through this, I’ve learned that the more we search for beauty of life, the more we invite it in. As kids we noticed it with ease, exploring to our heart’s content but, as adults, we sometimes forget to pay attention.

We get caught up with the mundane, we focus on the negative, and we love joining in on a mutual whine-fest with others. But imagine how much we could gain from our day if we took a moment to soak in the bliss of being alive.

Lying in the grass, laughing with a loved one, being recognized at work for doing a great job, swapping out things we don’t like with things we love, acknowledging someone else and seeing their joy, and just embracing the moments that make up our day-to-day lives is the key to finding the extraordinary in each day.

It may not always seem that simple but, I promise, if you’re willing to give it a shot, try it out, and be intentional when seeking out wondrous moments, it will make a significant difference to your life. And, the more you practice, the easier it will be to see.

I invite you to be aware of what you might need to change and seek out possibilities for joy in the coming week.

Find ways to bring the fun in and keep your eyes wide open for special moments or people that can make your life even more beautiful. Or, even better, take time to be grateful for what you’ve already got.

Try it out, see how you go, and then leave me a comment and tell me how it went!

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

"We can all rediscover the beauty of life, instead of focusing on the ugliness, the negativity, or the laborious pains of just getting by."

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A positive attitude

A positive attitude | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

By Remez Sasson
Positive attitude is the cause of success and happiness.

A positive attitude helps you cope more easily with the daily affairs of life. It brings optimism into your life, and makes it easier to avoid worries and negative thinking. If you adopt it as a way of life, it will bring constructive changes into your life, and makes them happier, brighter and more successful.

With a positive attitude you see the bright side of life, become optimistic, and expect the best to happen. It is certainly a state of mind that is well worth developing.

Positive attitude manifests in the following ways:

    Positive thinking.
    Constructive thinking.
    Creative thinking.
    Optimism.
    The motivation and energy to do things and accomplish goals.
    A attitude of happiness.

A positive frame of mind helps in a lot of ways, such as:

    Expecting success and not failure.
    It makes you feel inspired.
    It gives you the strength not to give up, if you encounter obstacles on your way.
    You regard failure and problems as blessings in disguise.
    Believing in yourself and in your abilities.>
    You show more self-esteem and confidence.
    You look for solutions, instead of dwelling on problems.
    You see and recognize opportunities.

A positive attitude leads to happiness and success and can change your whole life. If you look at the bright side of life, your whole life becomes filled with light. This light affects not only you and the way you look at the world, but it also affects your whole environment and the people around you. If this attitude is strong enough, it becomes contagious. It's like radiating light around you.
The benefits of a positive attitude:

This might seem like a repition of the above, but it helps to make this message clearer.

    It helps you achieve goals and attain success.
    It brings more happiness into your life.
    It produces more energy.
    Positive attitude increases your faith in your abilities, and brings hope for a brighter future.
    You become able to inspire and motivate yourself and others.
    You encounter fewer obstacles and difficulties in your daily life.
    You get more respect and love from other people.
    Life smiles at you.

Negative attitude says: you cannot achieve success.

Positive attitude says: You can achieve success.

If you have been exhibiting a negative attitude and expecting failure and difficulties, it is now the time to change the way you think. It is time to get rid of negative thoughts and behavior and lead a happier and more successful life. Why not start today? If you have tried and failed, it only means that you have not tried enough.
Simple tips for developing a positive attitude:

    Choose to be happy. Yes, it is a matter of choice. When negative thoughts enter your mind, just refuse to look at them, substituting them with happy thoughts
    Look at the bright side of life. It's a matter of choice and repeated attempts.
    Choose to be optimistic.
    Find reasons to smile more often. You can find such reasons, if you look for them.
    Have faith in yourself, and believe that the Universe can help you.
    Associate yourself with happy people.
    Read inspiring stories.
    Read inspiring quotes.
    Repeat affirmations that inspire and motivate you.
    Visualize only what you want to happen, not what you don't want.
    Learn Learn to master your thoughts

Following even only one of the above suggestions, will bring more light into your life!

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

I believe that both positive and negative attitudes are learned behaviors that becomes habitual. It is extremely difficult to be positive all the time but a negative can be turned into a positive. This is not an easy feat. It wakes great energy, focus, and self awareness to turn things around. Everyday is a new day and offers new opportunity.

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You Are The Best Thing

Great Song from the new album Gossip in the Grain from Ray LaMontagne. Click the link or image above to view original video.
Vilma Bonilla's insight:
Baby, it's been a long day, Baby!
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The power of positive thinking and attitude

The power of positive thinking and attitude | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

Positive thinking is a mental and emotional attitude that focuses on the bright side of life and expects positive results.

A positive person anticipates happiness, health and success, and believes he or she can overcome any obstacle and difficulty.

Positive thinking is not accepted by everyone. Some, consider it as nonsense, and scoff at people who follow it, but there is a growing number of people, who accept positive thinking as a fact, and believe in its effectiveness.

It seems that this subject is gaining popularity, as evidenced by the many books, lectures and courses about it.

To use it in your life, you need more than just to be aware of its existence. You need to adopt the attitude of positive thinking in everything you do.
Positive thinking is a way of life.

The following story illustrates how this power works:

Allan applied for a new job, but he didn't believe he will get it, since his self-esteem was low, and he considered himself as a failure and unworthy of success.

He had a negative attitude toward himself, and therefore, believed that the other applicants were better and more qualified than him.

Allan's mind was occupied with negative thoughts and fears concerning the job, for the whole week preceding the job interview. He actually, anticipated failure.

On the day of the interview, he got up late, and to his horror he discovered that the shirt he planned to wear was dirty, and the other one needed ironing. As it was already too late, he went out wearing a wrinkled shirt and without eating breakfast.

During the interview, he was tense, negative, hungry and worried about his shirt. All this, distracted his mind and made it difficult for him to focus on the interview. His overall behavior made a bad impression, and consequently, he materialized his fear and did not get the job.

Jim applied for the same job too, but approached the matter in a different way. He was sure that he was going to get the job. During the week preceding the interview, he often visualized himself making a good impression and getting the job.

In the evening before the interview, he prepared the clothes he was going to wear, and went to sleep a little earlier. On day of the interview, he woke up earlier than usual, and had ample time to eat breakfast, and then to arrive to the interview before the scheduled time.

Jim made a good impression and got the job.

What do we learn from these two stories? Was there any magic used? No, everything happened in a natural way.

With a positive attitude we experience pleasant and happy feelings. This brings brightness to the eyes, more energy, and happiness. Our whole being broadcasts good will, happiness and success. Even our health is affected in a beneficial way. We walk tall, our voice is more powerful, and our body language shows the way we feel.

Positive and negative thinking are contagious.

We affect, and are affected by the people we meet, in one way or another. This happens instinctively and on a subconscious level, through words, thoughts and feelings, and through body language.

Is it any wonder that we want to be around positive people, and prefer to avoid negative ones?

People are more disposed to help us, if we are positive, and they dislike and avoid anyone broadcasting negativity.

Negative thoughts, words and attitude bring up negative and unhappy moods and actions. When the mind is negative, poisons are released into the blood, which cause more unhappiness and negativity. This is the way to failure, frustration and disappointment.

Positive Thinking Practical Instructions

In order to turn the mind toward the positive, some inner work is required, since attitude and thoughts do not change overnight.

1.  Read about this subject, think about its benefits, and persuade yourself to try it. The power of your thoughts is a mighty power that is always shaping your life. This shaping is usually done subconsciously, but it is possible to make the process a conscious one. Even if the idea seems strange, give it a try. You have nothing to lose, but only to gain.
   
2. Ignore what other people say or think about you, if they discover that you are changing the way you think.
    
3. Use your imagination to visualize only favorable and beneficial situations.

4. Use positive words in your inner dialogues, or when talking with others.
   
5. Smile a little more, as this helps to think positively.

6.  Once a negative thought enters your mind, you have to be aware of it, and endeavor to replace it with a constructive one. If the negative thought returns, replace it again with a positive one. It is as if there are two pictures in front of you, and you have to choose to look at one of them, and disregard the other. Persistence will eventually teach your mind to think positively, and to ignore negative thoughts.
 
7. In case you experience inner resistance and difficulties when replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, do not give up, but keep looking only at the beneficial, good and happy thoughts in your mind.

8. It doesn't matter what your circumstances are at the present moment. Think positively, expect only favorable results and situations, and circumstances will change accordingly. If you persevere, you will transform the way your mind thinks. It might take some time for the changes to take place, but eventually they will.
    
9. Another useful technique is the repetition of affirmations. This technique is similar to creative visualization, and can be used together with it.

The other articles at this website, about the power of concentration, willpower, self-discipline and peace of mind, also contribute to the development of a positive mind, and are recommended for reading and practicing. ~ http://www.successconsciousness.com/index_000009.htm

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Nine ways to manage people who bother you

Nine ways to manage people who bother you | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

Ever faced people who bother you? I’m sure all of us have faced such people before. It’s okay when we have to face them just once or twice, but there are times when these people emerge in facets of our life where we have to deal with them on an ongoing basis. They can be business associates, fellow colleagues, friends, or even family members and relatives. In such cases, we have to learn how to deal with them. Here are my 9 tips to handle such people:

9 Ways To Manage People Who Bother You

1. You can only change yourself.

When dealing with people, always remember that it’s not about changing others, but about changing yourself. You can try to change others, but you may not succeed doing so. The best way to address the situation is to change how you perceive it and how you react to it. By changing that, everything else will subsequently change as well.

2. Draw your boundaries.

Be clear on what you will tolerate and what you will not tolerate. Then stick with it. You have your own personal space and it’s your perogative to protect your space. By drawing the boundaries, even if just mentally, you are clearer of the kind of behaviors to expect from others. If you don’t do so, it’s easy for you to be pushed over by others, especially since such people tend not to be conscious of personal boundaries. You’ll wind up shrinking in a corner and feeling miserable, and you wouldn’t want that.

3. Be upfront about where you stand.

If the person has a history of spilling into your personal space, then let him/her know where you stand the next time you communicate. People aren’t mind readers, and sometimes they may not be aware that they are infringing on your space. Giving the person some indicators will help. If he/she tends to take up a lot of your time, then let him/her know that you have XX minutes at the onstart of the conversation. That way, you are being fair by informing him/her in advance. If you prefer to communicate via email/text/chat/other channels, then let him/her know too.

4. Be firm when needed.

If the person does not stick within the boundaries, then enforce them. Give a gentle reminder at first. If he/she still does not get the hint, then make a call and draw the line right there. I used to be very relenting in my communications. I would attend the person for however long it took. In the end it enroached on my personal space, and I wasn’t sure if all that time and energy I spent ever did anything too. As I gradually pushed back and became firm on my boundaries, I was a lot more fulfilled. I realized if I wasn’t meeting my needs, I couldn’t be helping anyone with theirs.

5. Ignore them.

Ignoring is effective in the right moments. When you respond, you give them a reason to continue their behavior. If you just ignore, they don’t have a choice but to seek out someone else. Not only that, it also hints to them about their behavior and helps them do some self-reflection.

6. Don’t take it personally.

Most of the times, these people behave the same way around others too. I had a friend who was very negative. She always had something to criticize whenever we were together. At first I thought she had something against me, but after I observed her interacting with our common friends, I realized she was like that with everyone else too. Realizing it wasn’t anything personal helped me deal with her objectively.

7. Observe how others handle them.

Watching others deal with the same person you find annoying can be an eye-opening perspective. Even if the person may be at his/her wits-end handling the individual, just observing from a third party’s point of view can give you insights on how to manage. The next time you are with this person, get someone else into the conversation too. Take a back seat by broaching a topic that’s relevant between the two of them, then play the silent role in the situation. Observe how the other party handles him/her. Try this exercise with different people – from savvy networkers, someone you find difficult to deal with as well, someone similar to you, etc. You will get interesting results.

8. Show kindness.

Often times, they act the way they do because they are looking for an empathetic ear. Hear what they have to say, and be empathetic towards them. Give them some friendly act of kindness. Don’t impose on them, but just be there and empathize. It might well do the trick.

There was once when I had a long talk with a client on an issue she was facing. Later in the week, I sent her an sms telling her that ultimately it boiled down to her, and as long as she believed in herself, there was nothing insurmountable. Many weeks after that, we were catching up, and she told me how the message was really encouraging for her. She normally deleted all her smses but left that one in her phone. A little kind act from you may take little effort on your part but mean the world to others.

9. Help them.

Beneath the facade is really a cry for help. Check with them if they need any help, or if there is anything you can do to help them. Sometimes, it’s possible they require help but they don’t know how to articulate it. Help them to uncover their problem, then work with them to analyze the issue and discover the solution. It’s important to still let them take charge in the situation, because the end outcome is you want them to learn to take control of the situation, and not grow dependent on you for help.

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Kokomo

Soundtrack for the movie Cocktail 1988.

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

Gotta love the beach chemistry!

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We have the power to choose

We have the power to choose | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” ~Wayne Dyer

When I was twelve years old I got back from a weekend at my aunt’s house with my mom. We came home to find my father dead in bed. I remember my mom’s screams causing many of our neighbors to come over to see what had happened.

The experience shut me down. I don’t know how else to put it. My father was young: fifty-three years old. It was a huge shock to everyone.

Apparently, he was too proud to get a pacemaker. He died of a heart attack.

My oldest sister was on her honeymoon. She had just gotten married a week before. My other sister was away at college. When they came home they were hysterical, just like my mom and the rest of the family.

I felt like I had to be the strong one because I was the man of the house now. I was very quiet and reserved about the whole thing. This gave the impression that I was handling it well.

Things were not well, though. I never dealt with it in a proper way. I never received therapy or any other kind of help. I buried the experience deep down—so deep that I can barely remember him.

I rarely even spoke about it with anyone. I may have had only a handful of conversations about it by the age of thirty.

I thought I was okay with it, but I was damaged.

I realized somewhere in my late twenties that it affected me. I felt an intense emptiness inside. I’d become sad at times for no reason. I’d feel like crying but couldn’t.

I tended to lean toward the negative. The future always seemed uncertain and scary. I have always thought I would die young. I couldn’t see myself living past the age of forty. It influenced relationships in ways I didn’t realize until recently.

It impacted my ability to express emotions, because I’d decided that being strong meant holding them in. I wouldn’t have been able to write this a year ago.

I managed to make it to the age of twenty-nine without having my heart broken; in fact, I was only five months away from thirty when it happened. It was a traumatic experience for me, probably because it was the first time.

The abandonment aspect was hardest part. I was depressed. I felt certain that something was wrong with me. I blamed myself. I hated myself. My confidence and trust were shaken. I felt abandoned. I thought I would never recover. I felt damaged yet again.

Some time later I reconnected with someone I dated briefly in college. I’d always considered her “the one that got away.” We began dating and things were great for a while. We were in love and best friends. But even though we were really enjoying each other, I was not okay.

I shared more of myself with her than anyone ever before, but I was never truly comfortable. I had confidence, insecurity, and abandonment issues. I was always worried that she would leave me.

I was so afraid that I constantly needed validation. The vulnerability was eating me up inside. I tried to hold on too tight to feel a sense of control. Eventually she felt suffocated and broke up with me.

It was a self-fulfilling prophecy really—I lost her because I was afraid I would.

I don’t blame her, though. She is an amazing, beautiful, brilliant woman. It wasn’t a healthy relationship which made things hard on her—I get that. In a way I’m grateful for this. It was a wake-up call.

The break-up hasn’t been easy, but I’ve managed better than I could have ever imagined. I made it a point to try to remain positive, to not let it consume me. I have chosen to view it as a learning experience.

I started writing in a journal every day to get through it and understand myself better. One night I was feeling down, but I wanted to steer my thoughts in a positive direction. I started making a list of things I would learn from the break-up.

They included things like not dwelling on the negative, loving myself, being confident, and being less critical of myself. In the middle of the list I wrote the words:

“I can choose what affects me.”

By the time I finished the list, those words lingered. I repeated them over and over out loud. Every time I said them I felt more powerful. I felt more control over my life. I repeated different variations of the theme:

I can choose what affects me.

I can choose to not be damaged.

I can choose to not be afraid.

I can choose to not let this break-up depress me.

I can choose to look at mistakes as learning experiences.

I can choose to be confident.

I can choose to be happy.

I can choose to feel loved.

I can choose.

Every time I said a phrase, I felt a chill in my body. Tears started flowing, but I wasn’t really crying. It felt like they were escaping; like I was letting go of this deep sadness I’ve carried for so long.

It was an awakening, a healing. It was one of the most significant and amazing experiences in my life.

I wrote the words “I can choose” on my hand as a reminder. They give me the power to take control of my life. Every morning I write them again. Eventually, I won’t need a visual reminder.

Whenever I feel my thoughts become negative, I look at my hand and remember that it doesn’t have to be that way. We don’t have to be slaves to our pasts. We don’t have to go through life with emotional scars.

We don’t have to let negative experiences define us.

We all have power over our lives. It may be difficult to see, but it’s always there. We always have a choice.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, April 21, 8:45 PM

It is hard work, but it is worthwhile.

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The River of Dreams

Music video by Billy Joel performing The River Of Dreams. (C) 1993 SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT
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