Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Here's an article to encourage anyone who needs to refresh herself or himself, whether it be in writing, other work, parenting, or life in general:

How To Stay Motivated - Easy Tips for Sustaining Your Passion by Sheri McConnell
(Free Articles )

1) Find a Natural Sanctuary - Stimulate the Senses

By far one of the best ways to stay motivated and to sustain your passion (no matter what it is) is to get outside and walk or jog or run. Our bodies and our brains need to be stimulated and nothing does this better than nature. Nature is vivid. The sounds and textures and smells will help you come alive. And by physically moving in nature, you will stimulate your body even more. Once your senses become stimulated, your brain will start to give you answers to personal and/or business questions. Your body will also become programmed to generate new creative ideas when you stimulate your senses.

Clearing the Clutter and Chaos

One reason we lose our motivation and can’t find our passion in life is that we are too busy experiencing chaos. Chaos comes in many forms–people, events, TV, radio and so on. You must experience nature to find and sustain your passion. Just 30 minutes a day will clear the clutter from your brain and reprogram you to breathe and think more instead of being so reactionary to all the numbing stimulants in your life!

2) Create a Fun System


Once you clear your mind each day, you will need a FUN system to keep track of all the stimulating ideas you will get! I have a notebook that I carry with me where I jot down affirmations, goals, and problems (personal and professional) that I need to solve! And I find that every few months or so I like to rip it all out and throw it way and start over. For me, I seem to solve all those problems and reach all the goals and this physically lets me have a clean slate and move on. Be open to the process of journaling and do what your gut tells you to do.


I also love mindmapping because I am drawn to the creative visuals! There are some great software resources out there like http://www.mindjet.com/. For me the process of mindmapping stimulates the creative side of my brain.


The other fun way that I stay motivated and connected to my passion is by using a graphic coach. My coach, Christina Merkley at http://www.shift-it-coach.com/ took me through her Shift It Program. Not only was this fun, it was eye opening! And she even has maps and instructions so you can use this graphic coaching process yourself at home.

3) Pay Attention

The wonderful thing about creating a fun system in your daily life and getting back to nature more is that it allows you the time and space to “Ask Yourself Questions.” This step is the key to sustaining your passion. You will change and the world around you keeps changing so it is important (now-more than ever!) that you keep asking yourself questions so you can stay centered. What types of questions should you ask yourself in order to sustain your passion?- What makes me happy?- What do I enjoy?- What excites me?- What makes me cry?- What can I do to learn more about my passions?- How can I use my passion to improve the world around me?- Am I doing anything creative in my life?- If not, what can I do?


Want To Use This Article In Your Ezine or Website? You have my permission, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Sheri McConnell is the President of the National Association of Women Writers (http://www.NAWW.org). She helps women writers and entrepreneurs discover, create, and profit from their intellectual knowledge! Free reports for writers available with subscription to NAWW Weekly. Sheri lives in San Antonio, Texas with her husband Seth and their four children. Contact her at naww@onebox.comor her toll free number at 866-821-5829.

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Friday, March 07, 2008

A Tale of Two Cities

No excuses. We're all busy. But here's why I haven't been blogging much the last few months:

My husband's boss threw down a gauntlet of sorts some months ago. Always one for a challenge, Steve was raring to go for it. Being the thoughtful husband he is, however, he came home and discussed it with me first. The proposition meant he would be working in another city, but we would keep our home base where we've lived the past 23 years.

Thus began the adventure, with Steve sometimes commuting to get home for special events but more often spending most of the week away. Once he moved into temporary housing provided by his company, I began to "visit." Sometimes I drive up to join him and have my car to check out the area.

Often I ride with him and stay most of the week, so I have to be creative about meals and how to pass the time. The winding layout of the apartment complex provides a great place to walk. I made a bonus discovery after a few weeks--a herd of eleven deer appear regularly from the woods to a grassy area on the hill opposite Steve's building. That is, when the most vocal and hyper of the canine tenants aren't being walked.

Time is running out for the temporary pad, so Steve and I've been hunting--for new quarters. If all goes well, we'll move him into the place we've found in a few weeks. The challenge lies in furnishing another dwelling from the stuff we have in our house and buying as little as possible as cheaply as possible. Good thing we saved hand-me-downs from our parents and grandparents for our almost-independent kids. Don't leave home yet, kids. Dad is borrowing your furniture.

In the meantime, I take care of things at home sometimes while I'm physically present and often from a distance. Our son minds the cats, keeps the garbage put out, and generally brushes up on his self-tending skills out of necessity.

A weird way to live, this situation could stress us. But we've chosen to look at it as a grand new adventure. Home is still home, but we're also getting acquainted with another place, exploring it together. We're apprehensive about taking on new real estate and more fiscal responsibility, but being frugal to pay new bills brings its own rewards, including self esteem and more reliance on the Lord.

Give me a few years, and I'll let you know how it went!