Health, money, Personal Success, relationships

Busy, Busy Bee

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Drawing practice #50

Feeling stressed and anxious about the holidays is a choice. Yes, it is.

Don’t succumb to the pressure to buy.

“This year, shoppers plan on spending $660 on average for the holiday season. 27% report they did not create a budget at all and 24% say they overspent last year.” (USA Today)

Create a budget. Stick to it. If anyone has a problem with it, it’s exactly that – their problem.

Focus, instead, on expressing love for friends and family. Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. That is the true spirit of the holidays, no matter what your faith.

Here is an interesting graphic from USA Today:

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Health, money, Personal Success

Time is Money

 

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Photo by Ales Krivec

 

My biggest inefficient use of time: preparing food for the family.

I grocery shop, of course, but I rarely think past the next meal or two. Consequently, I stress out a bit 5x/week, deciding what to cook for dinner and what to pack for lunch. We get  Blue Apron delivered 2x/week (skipping weeks where the recipes are not to our family’s liking), but then we’re either out and about and I buy the kids dinner (can’t be helped – they go to symphony practice straight from school and don’t get home until 8 or 9pm.) Or I am too tired and fussy and we eat something which I cook in a groggy state. Sometimes, it tastes halfway decent.

This Sunday, I am going to plan the entire week ahead of time, prepare it, and freeze it.

This will free up time during the weekdays (our busiest days!) and lessen stress.

I’ve had this idea in the back of my mind for a long time, but I’ve always countered it with I don’t want to cook all day Sunday.  However, I’m using those hours (Monday – Friday) when I’m at my most fatigued.

I am going to use recipes from this book:

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But I’m not sharing the title with my family. Knowing it’s healthy, they’ll decide they don’t like the meals before they even eat!

Health, money, motivation, Personal Success

Want to be a Millionaire?

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W is for Wealth and Wisdom*

What I know through years of experience:

 

 

*Part of my alphabiography project

 

 

Personal Success

Podcasts & Productivity

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Photo by Jonathan Velasquez

A year ago,  I read the book “The $100 Startup.”

I hardly remembered what I read, but I recently listened to a podcast (Optimal Living Daily) where the podcaster reviewed this book. The big takeaway (among many) is that people spend an awful lot of time trying to blaze their own trails to success when they can simply follow someone who has already achieved what they want.

The reasoning, Justin (podcast host) believes, is because it feels good to try to create our own means and methods. But if you really want to achieve your goal(s), the most efficient way is to simply follow what someone already did.

This makes sense! Why reinvent the wheel?

We feel good and effective as we blaze our own trail, because we feel so busy.

But do not confuse “busy” with “productive.”

Check the podcast out, he covers many great writers and entrepreneurs. Justin’s voice is very even and mellow. It was easy to listen to as I walked my dog.

 

 

Personal Success

Wishes

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When I was very young (maybe five years old),  my mother made rings out of dandelions. She’d pluck the weed and create a knot with the stem and, smiling, put the ring on my finger. I felt special and lucky. Within hours, the dandelion wilted, the yellow flowers tinged with brown. It was my first lesson of impermanence.

We were poor and a part of me knew it, but mostly, I was blissfully ignorant. I reveled in the smell of burning wood in the Iowa autumn. I loved the dandelion rings my mother made and I loved watching “The Muppets” on TV. All of this was (relatively) free. I thought everyone had a father who came home exhausted and discouraged. I thought everyone shared one bathroom in their family. I thought everyone fought over money.

I’m a lot older now and I have learned this: wishing for “stuff” always leads to disappointment. Nothing you can buy will deliver anywhere near the satisfaction of smelling burning wood on a Midwest autumn evening, or watching the “Muppets” on a chilly Halloween night or wearing a dandelion ring your mother makes just for you.

Nothing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

money, Personal Success

Money Is Only a Tool (Ayn Rand)

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What are your beliefs about money? That you’ll never have enough? That only greedy people are rich?

Money is energy. You receive it in return for your work. If your work is valuable, you will receive currency. Focus on the giving and the rest will take care of itself.

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. –Winston Churchill

Funds (like people) escape those who squeeze too tightly. Do good work, serve people generously, and wealth will come.