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10 Healthy & Happy Habits To Start Today

We are all striving to feel our best and to do our best. But without taking care of ourselves how can we keep doing just that? Healthy habits can be simple and easily worked into your days. Whether it’s taking some time to yourself to recharge by taking a hot bath in the evening, or calling up a friend to vent about your day, or walking down the drive to get the mail instead of driving, every little bit makes a difference in how you feel each day. 

Here are 10 Simple, Healthy & Happy Habits to start doing today to feel your best! 

  1. Drink more water.
  2. Reward yourself for meeting goals.
  3. Get more sleep.
  4. Include “me” time in each week.
  5. Keep your to-do list organized.
  6. Talk to your friends and family routinely.
  7. Get active every day.
  8. Wash your face and moisturize each day.
  9. Reflect often.
  10. Smile more.

Want more tips for a happier and healthier life? Check out these posts:

10 Tips To Get A Restful Sleep

How To Build A Better To-Do List

Reflect On How Far You’ve Come

Top Tips For Managing Stress

5 Apps To Stay Balanced In A Busy Life

 

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How to Keep your Pup Busy & Entertained the Natural Way

 

It can be a challenge to keep the pups entertained when you have so much going on…though I’d love to spend my whole days running around, throwing the ball or playing tug-of-war with my pups I know that’s just not my option most days. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely sneak in some play time throughout the day but there are the down times I need to get some time behind the computer screen so keeping the pups entertained on those counts is a must. 

My pup Lucy has a gluten-allergy which surprisingly I learned that most dog treats have some form of gluten in them so when she was diagnosed we went all natural with her. She gets home cooked meals or special dog food, and she gets elite treats which can add up the cost quick visiting specialty dog treat boutiques, especially since she’s quite the busy body.

When we discovered Bully Sticks, we felt saved. We had found a treat that both pups love that we could feel confident were all natural and gluten free. 

Lucy eagerly but patiently waiting for her Wyldlife Pets bully stick.

 

5 Natural Treats To Keep In The Treat Drawer

 

1.) Bones – The key to these is to make sure they are actual, natural bones. Stay away from rawhide. It has been proven through several studies that rawhide does not digest properly in a dog’s stomach and can cause several health problems down the road. You can grab some bones from the butcher or shop for all natural bones. Here are some I found that are fairly inexpensive – All Natural Grass Fed Meaty Bones.

 

 

2.) Himalayan Mountain Dog Chews – Lucy makes her way through these a little faster but she still really enjoys them. I love how simple the ingredients are in these – Cow’s Milk, Yak Milk, Salt, Lime Juice. No Artificial Ingredients, No Additives, No Preservatives. 

 

 

3.) Bully Sticks –  These are Lucy’s favorite treat! I came across Wyldlife Pets subscription pack and special savings and it has been wonderful! I always know that these are on their way to replenishing our treat drawer. It gives me so much peace to know that I can give Lucy a treat to keep her happy and healthy. Check out their deals here – Wyldlife Pets Bully Stick & Tendon Mix.

 

4.) Hooves –  Fill these will some all natural peanut butter and you can keep your pup entertained for a bit as they work to get all the peanut butter out and then to sit and chew away at the hoof. Words of caution though – these babies hurt if you find yourself stepping on one in the middle of the night, so collect them after your pup is done chewing!

 

5.) Chicken Feet –  Okay, I know these are a little weird to have laying around the house but the pups go crazy for them! I promise they aren’t as bad as they sound. They don’t even smell as weird as some of the other treats we’ve tried in the past…we tried the raw bones, that was something to get used to!

 

You can check out all of Lucy’s favorite toys and chews here – Keeping Your Pup Entertained.

All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive payments for leads/sales. For more information please reference my disclosure page.

 

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How To Plan A Healthy Schedule When You’re Super Busy

It’s no secret that I’ve been really hammering down and trying to build a simpler life…I always manage to have a lot on my plate though and that seems to be how it’s going to be for a bit yet…but I am working on organizing my life so that I can complete more tasks efficiently, add more mindfulness into my days, and focus on my main priorities first.

I’ve been de-cluttering like crazy (you can check out my Closet Clean Out Post here), working on redefining my blog and blog series to align more with my goals in life and career, and have been focusing on building a routine and more balanced days. It can be a tough gig to balance out a full time job, blog full time, focus on the launching of a boutique, and be a mom on top of everything else that falls into our laps but I’m a very determined gal!

Here’s how I planned out my goal schedule for my work week:

 

I know that I’ll have to be flexible on some days but this helps give me a good guideline to follow. On the weekends I’ll tackle chores, social and family activities and I’ll work additional blog and boutique task time in. Also will tackle classes for my Health/Life Coaching Certification on weekends. I know this all seems like a bit of a hustle but it’s what I need to do to reach my goals! If I learn to manage my time well and make the most out of it, focus on continuing to move forward, and make sure each day includes healthy habits and self-care routines then I know I’ll land on top <3

8 Key Tips To Remember When Building Your Schedule:

1.) Allow yourself some flexibility. Don’t beat yourself up if you have to move things around some to fit what’s come up for the week.

2.) Hold yourself accountable. Even if you have to move some things around, the key is to move them, not delete priorities altogether.

3.) Get rid of tasks and to-do’s that aren’t serving value to your goals or your life.

4.) Allow yourself time to rest. If you’re feeling exhausted, make a note of it. What can you adjust to ease up on yourself? I make sure to allow some down time on the weekends for myself to recuperate.

5.) Have activities that are fun or enjoyable in your schedule.

6.) Don’t negate self-care routines. Make sure there is some in each day!

7.) Make sure you are ensuring you have enough sleep. Everyone is a little different in how much sleep they need. Make sure to allow the time you need each night.

8.) Eat healthy. Food is our main source of energy. I just noticed that I don’t have breakfast on my schedule…doesn’t mean I don’t ever eat breakfast, I usually have a breakfast sandwich and cappuccino or a fruit smoothie once I get to the office while I go through my emails

Here are some other helpful posts to help you on your journey:

Here’s what a weekend looks like for me: A Day in My Life – Weekend Tasks & Bliss – Balancing Chores, Self-Care and Fun All In One Day

Creating a to-do list that you can manage –  How To Build A Better To-Do List

Tips to keep stress under control – Top Tips For Managing Stress From Wellness Bloggers With Stress Experience

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How To Build A Better To-Do List

Ah the mighty to-do list.

I have a saying for myself that goes, “if it makes it to the to-do list it’ll get done, if it doesn’t then it gets lost.” I depend on my to-do list like a road map to my duties, so much that it can get a bit out of hand sometimes. I have been working on mastering the to-do list process for many months (okay, seriously years) and I think I’ve finally nailed down a process that is working for me. It might continue to evolve as I do but for now I think I’ve got a pretty good way to keep my mega to-do list organized.

1.) Pick up a notebook to keep all your lists and notes in. I find it so much easier to be able to keep all my scribbles together to reference when I need to. I have an 8×10 notebook with a golden pineapple on the front and lined pages that I absolutely love. I feel chic and organized lol. Here are some other great notebooks to grab: Beautiful Notebooks To Keep You Organized. 

2.) When writing out your to-do list try and group things together when possible. I can usually do pretty good with this when I’m initially writing out my list but I find things get a little scattered as I add more tasks so I color-code tasks also. For example, purple is for blog tasks, pink is for boutique launching tasks, turquoise is for paintings for upcoming shows, and black is for everything else.

3.) Highlight priority tasks. I currently have two levels of priority – yellow for high priority and pink for very near future.

4.) Review your calendar and note deadlines on your to-do list next to the corresponding task.

5.) Add some fun to-do’s like ‘schedule dinner with a friend’. This helps keep you engaged with your list, keeping it from turning into the mundane.

6.) Keep your Bucket List separate from your to-do list. You may include tasks that need to be completed to work towards setting up something for your bucket list though. For example, scheduling an appointment, booking a hotel, buying tickets, or picking up needed supplies.

7.) Use the box and cross-out method in conjunction. Check or ‘x’ the box when the task is started or in progress, cross out when complete.

8.) Re-write your list weekly, you’ll notice some things change. Some things are added, some things fall off. Keeping your to-do list up to date will help you manage the tasks and deadlines.

9.) Review your to-do list daily. I review mine three times a day – once in the morning, once mid-day and once in the evening. This helps me add things that come to mind and helps me manage what needs to be completed in that day or the next.

10.) Keep it close by. I take my notebook with me almost everywhere. If I am going somewhere I can’t take it, then I’ll write out a short list on a post it to stick in my pocket. This keeps my top priorities in front of me for the day. This also helps me to plan them into my day. For instance, if I’m going to the grocery store and need to ship I package I can map out passing a mailbox or a shipping center.

All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive payments for leads/sales. For more information please reference my disclosure page
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Power Tips For An Awesome Closet Clean Out

 

So as I journey towards Minimalism, I find myself in a constant battle over my wardrobe. I love clothes and style, after all I had a focus in Fashion Design & Merchandising for part of my schooling. Moving to a ‘Capsule Wardrobe’ (even though I do think they are a wonderful idea!) is just not something that is a realistic goal for me right now but that doesn’t mean I can’t slender my wardrobe down. Each season, I make time for a good closet clean-out and overhaul.

Minimalism isn’t about only owning the less stuff you possibly can, it’s about only holding onto things that bring joy and value to your life so some thoughts to keep in mind when you’re going through your clothes (really think hard into these questions too!):

1.) Does it fit well?

2.) Do I feel confident and fabulous in it? Does it add value to my day?

3.) Have I worn it or do I see myself wearing it in the near future (in season – within the next month; out of season – within the next 3-6 months depending on the piece of clothing)?

The Tedious Process of the Closet Clean-Out (but oh so necessary!!!):

1.) Take everything out of your closet.

2.) Hang back up the things you wear routinely or absolutely love and can’t live without.

*Organize by either type of clothing (i.e. work, play, going out wear) or by color.

3.) Start three piles:

First Pile – Donate

Second Pile – Try On/Keep if fits well

Third Pile – Sell

And a trash bag

4.) Start going through everything. Go through each piece of clothing and separate into each  pile, tossing anything that is mega worn, has holes or tears and doesn’t have any life left in it.

5.) Try on the clothes that are in that pile. Hang up what you have decided to keep. Quick Tip: Put your out-of season clothes in the back of your closet and then switch out when the season changes. The clothes you’ve decided not to keep, split up in the other piles accordingly (donate/sell).

6.) Pack up clothes for donation. After they’re all packed up, put them by the door or in the car so that you take them next time you go out. The key is to getting them out of the house as soon as possible so they don’t end up sneaking back into your closet! One of my favorite places to donate is Soles4Souls – they even hooked up with Zappos now and you can get free shipping labels to send your stuff in. They take both clothes and shoes!

7.) Take out the trash bag! 

8.) Prepare/Pack up clothes to sell. There are tons of places to sell your clothes nowadays. Here are a few of my favorites:

Ebay – The process to set up a listing on Ebay has become much easier than it used to be. The downside is that I’ve found I don’t sell my items for very much money here but it’s a great place to get items sold quickly.

Swap.com – I am loving this site! I pack up my stuff and ship it in and they take care of the rest – photos, listing on their site, pricing and shipping to the buyer. This is a newer site for me so I’m still waiting to see how I profit out of it but I really love the ease of it. You have three options to ship your clothes to them – Print a prepaid label and ship in your own box (which is a decent size box, up to 17 x 17 x 20 and up to 50 lbs.), request a label to be mailed to you, or request a shipping bag with prepaid label. They take the shipping cost out of your profits so there’s no upfront cost. I also like that they will take all seasons of clothing (of course, it may not sell as well if it’s out of season but still so nice to have the option to be able to ship it all out at once!) and they take women’s, men’s, and children’s clothing.

Poshmark – This is an app based site so you’ll have to download the app to your phone but it’s pretty simple to use. You can take pictures of your clothing within the app which makes it a pretty seamless process. Poshmark is more of a social selling platform in which members follow your “closet” and share your listings to their followers. I’ve been a Poshmark member for few years and I’ve made some sales here and there. Be ready to reply to comments and questions on your items, I’ve found it’s definitely more a conversational sale. They also have the opportunity for members to make an offer on your items and you can bargain back and forth for the sale a little bit.

Brick & Mortar Consignment Shops – These can be nice because they’re local but I find them to be more time consuming. Typically you’ll bring your items in for review, wait while they review them, and then they will review what they are going to take and what they will be pricing at them with you. You’ll have to head back to pick up any unsold items and they usually mail you a check for your commission. If you go this route, I recommend trying to find a shop that will offer you cash on the spot for the items they accept – it saves you some trips!

Yeah, I know the big, awesome closet clean-out can be a good day’s work but that aahhh feeling you have afterwards is so worth it and it pays off in the long run. Keeping a clean, organized closet helps relieve stress in the morning when you’re getting ready, helps ensure you have clothes that make you feel your best each day, and saves you money by keeping you up to date on what you already have (so you don’t end up with duplicates) and keeping basics on key for each season.

Get rid of the closet clutter! 

All opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links. For more information please reference my disclosure page.
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How To Be Productive On A Sick Day

So I found myself feeling down and out yesterday morning, less than motivated to get anything done on a very busy week. Sick days are never convenient especially for us “always keeping busy and always have something to do” types. But when your body calls for some healing time you shouldn’t ignore it. king at my to-do list, however, I knew it wasn’t a day I could give up completely to stay in bed. Luckily I have a job that I can remote into and work from home on days needed and with budget time approaching soon I couldn’t feel more blessed to have that option. I needed to create a day where I could take my sick time but also still push through some productivity and accomplish some tasks. 

How To Be Productive On A Sick Day: Tips and Tricks to Help You Take Time To Heal but Still Get Things Done

1.) Take it Easy – I chose not to shower and get dressed. I chose to save that energy for meetings later in the day. I spent the day curled up in bed behind my laptop keeping me warm and comfy. This gave me a bit of sense of security not having to face anyone in person when I wasn’t feeling my best. Write out a realistic list of tasks that you think you can accomplish throughout the day.

2.) Start Small – Take a peek at your to-do list and see what tasks range closer to the “easy” side. For me, it was tackling sponsored Facebook posts. The verbiage is basically copy and paste so I didn’t have to get much thinking going early in the morning. Chose tasks that are also self-sufficient. Like laundry, this is a chore that you can throw in the washer and then let the washer do its thing. Save any hand-washing for another day.

3.) Hydrate – make sure you are drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day. This will help you stay more energized and it will help flush out the toxins. I am a huge fan of tea especially when I’m not feeling well so I kept a cup of hot tea by my side most of the day.

4.) Put on Some Background Noise – For me, this meant a good Netflix binge. The background noise kept me feeling more awake to work but still relaxed enough that I didn’t feel stressed.

5.) Take Breaks – Be honest about your limits when you don’t feel good. Take frequent breaks throughout the day. Remember a sick day is about resting so you can get better. Sick days are not the days to take over the world…save that for tomorrow when you’re feeling back to par!

Bonus – Go to be early! Remember that there is always another day, “what doesn’t get done today will get done another day”.

I knew I needed to give myself some extra self-care so that I could get better but I am also one that will stress about what I’m not getting done while I’m laying in bed being sick so I curated my plan of attack so that I could find the right balance to work for myself. This isn’t to say that every sick day can have this plan…some sick days you just have to let it all go and stay in bed! 

How to Stay Motivated & My Top TED Talks for Motivation

Sometimes I need a little help getting motivated, a little kick in the butt to get back to tasks. I have found TED Talks to be extremely inspiring and motivating. They speak truth, they speak action, they speak change. A key way to keep motivated to work towards your goals is to surround yourself with motivation and positive thoughts of change.

  1. Surround yourself with positive, motivated people.
  2. Post motivational quotes at your desk, in your planner, and in your room.
  3. Read an affirmation every morning.
  4. Listen to music while you work or clean.
  5. Read motivational books and listen to motivational podcasts.

My Top TED Talks for when I Need Motivation

  1. The Art of Being Yourself by Caroline McHugh
  2. How to Stop Screwing Yourself Over by Mel Robbins
  3. The Power of Vulnerability by Brene’ Brown
  4. The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong by Amy Morin
  5. Your Elusive Creative Genius by Elizabeth Gilbert
  6. Lessons from the Mental Hospital by Glennon Doyle Melton
  7. Listening to Shame by Brene’ Brown
  8. The Power of Introverts by Susan Cain
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How to Manage Stress, Top Tips from Wellness Bloggers

Life can be tough. It can be challenging, busy, and stressful. Sometimes stress is unavoidable. But becoming over-stressed can hurt our health, state of mind, and our happiness. It’s important to make it a priority to help keep stress at bay no matter how hectic things get. I reached out to my community of Wellness Bloggers for their expertise on how to keep stress under control so that you can keep the joy high in your life and keep on managing every day beautifully and strong.

Julie Voss

www.hellopeacefulmind.com

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Julie was diagnosed with anxiety and depression during the summer of 2016 and has since helped hundreds of people fight these mental illnesses and become happier. Read Julie’s inspiring story, “My Journey Into Acknowledging The Depression” on www.hellopeacefulmind.com and find out how you can become happier too!

1.) The first thing to reduce your stress is to find out its source.

I used to start every day with one sentence “I don’t want to go to work.” At the time, I would wake up at 6:30 am, take a quick shower and rush toward the door with a snack in hand to be stuck in traffic for an hour.
No wonder I couldn’t get out of bed. Who is excited to start the day stuck in traffic?

So I realized that I needed to change my morning routine. Starting the day in such a negative and stressful note was transforming the whole week into a nightmare.

Now, I wake up at 7 am to do things that I love like working on Hello Peaceful Mind. I am no longer rushing out for work. I take the time to enjoy my morning by sitting down for breakfast and then I get ready to go to work.
By the time I leave the house there’s no more traffic and when I get home at night it only takes me 20 minutes!
I have to tell you that since I changed my schedule to avoid traffic (which was my main source of stress) I am so much happier!

So what is stressing you out and how can you change that?

2.) Break down your goals into smaller tasks.

Stress can come from many different reasons. For me, it’s usually because I have too many projects on my plate and I overwhelm myself.What happens is that I think about everything that needs to be done and get overwhelmed. So I don’t do anything. Then I stress about it and I am even less likely to work on it. Do you know this feeling?

Basically I get stuck in this vicious cycle.

But I decided to break this cycle and started writing down my goals and big projects. Then I break it down into smaller tasks. And every day, I add only 3 of these tasks into my to do list. This way I am no longer overwhelmed and I feel good every time I cross something off the list!

You should give it a try and let me know how you feel!

Laura Brassie

www.ivoryandpine.com

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Laura is a mental health therapist who works full-time in a hospital with patients in crisis. She launched the blog Ivory & Pine in September 2016, which focuses on intentional living, self care, and mental health. She loves spending time with friends, lots of coffee, hiking in the mountains, exploring new music, and helping others grow their own intentional life. She lives in Colorado.

1.) Build self-care into your busy day.

You don’t have to get a massage once a week or practice yoga for 3 hours a day, although more power to you if you can. Download podcasts so that you can listen to words of encouragement and learn something new during your commute. Get an essential oil diffuser and switch out scent combinations to help get you energized in the morning and relaxed at night. Do your best to meal prep the night before… it seriously feels so nice to be hungry and have a healthy meal right there, ready for you. Make your bed in the morning.

Sometimes, it’s the little things that help you feel like you are proactive about having a good day, rather than reacting to circumstances.

2.) Take a retreat.

I love the idea of periodic retreats.

If you can, take an hour a week, a day a month, and a weekend a year to totally disconnect from electronics, get away from the daily grind, and push that reset button on your soul.

Use this dedicated time to journal, meditate, pray, exercise, be out in nature… whatever helps you de-stress! It’s important to ask yourself tough questions during this time and answer them thoughtfully… increasing self-awareness is important.

You can do this retreat by yourself, with a partner, or a couple friends, but I would leave the group quite small. We can practice these things at home of course, and we should…. but distractions still come up constantly. I really value nature, and so I try to take my retreats out on trails or in the mountains. I always come back with a greater sense of peace.

Jessica Bignell

www.moderndaygirlblog.com

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Jess is a mental health blogger devoted to helping improve the lives of anxiety sufferers. She shares tips, help and advice for those struggling, so that they can live a better life. Anxiety can be controlled, rather than it controlling you.

1.) Look for the signs. 

Dealing with stress can be difficult. I find that sometimes I’m much more stressed than I might realize, and that my body is actually telling me more than I realize.

If this sounds like you, I would definitely pay more attention to what your body is telling you. It could be the little things like shaky hands, headaches, chest pains or back pain. Maybe you’re not sleeping well, or sleeping too much. If you can catch the stress early, you can work on how to make it better. For anxiety sufferers, it’s very easy to ignore the signs and thinking that you’re okay when you’re not.

As Julie mentioned, once you’ve figured out what is causing you extra stress, you can work on improving your situation.

2.) I find that writing can often be the best therapy for stress and anxiety.

You don’t even need to be a blogger to benefit from the therapeutic qualities writing has.

Quite a few of my friends suffer from anxiety and I always recommend writing as a way of releasing whatever is bothering them. I advise them to start with whatever is bothering them first (as sometimes you don’t always have someone to talk to). It doesn’t even to make a whole lot of sense, just getting it from inside the mind and onto paper helps relieve strain.

So the next time you’re feeling a little anxious, write about it, put pen to paper and write about how you’re feeling. What caused it? Is your stress and anxiety as a result of a situation you can work on? Do you need help from anyone else?

Get it written down.

Laura Romberger

www.dofivethingsaday.com

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Laura is a big dreamer, full time marketing manager, blogger, and part-time artist. She brings an eclectic mix of excitement, passion, and a story to tell of self-discovery, development, and love.

1.) Make sure you are well rested and getting enough sleep.

When we are overtired we aren’t as capable to manage emotions and stress. Being well rested will help you stay calmer and able to process situations better before reacting to them. I always find that I’m less stressed when I’m not so tired! 

2.) Set Boundaries.

Make sure you only take on what you can really handle. Steer clear of negativity. Take time for yourself.

I am a sensitive person and I naturally suck in everything around me. I need to make sure that I am setting limits on the amount of negativity I consume and I need to ensure I have time set for “me time” so I can recharge. 

Boundaries are important to keep you balanced.

Stress is a part of life but you can choose to not let it control you. We all have those days, don’t beat yourself up for it. When in doubt, reach out to your tribe, your close friends. Look for inspiration in all the RIGHT places. It’ll get you back on track.

You got this!

5 Go-To Apps to Stay Balanced in a Busy Life

In today’s world so many of us are always on the go, juggling several tasks all at once, it can be tough to keep organized. As much as sometimes I hate to admit it, I’d be lost without my phone. As a blogger, marketing manager, and fitness & wellness geek my phone is my on the go bestie. Besides the several times of day I’m on social media sites sharing a post or sending a message, I also use my phone to help keep myself on task and on track.

 


Evernote
– This app is a godsend for me and my ever-racing mind. It gives me a place to put my ideas and thoughts while I’m on the go. Even in the car, I can use the talk to text to capture a thought. I love that the app also gives me the opportunity to organize my notes into notebooks feeding my need to categorize and helping me find the notes quickly later.


Fitness Apps – I currently use a few to keep track of my fitness goals, exercise, and activity. My FitBit app collects all of my steps and I love that it senses my activity throughout the day. It took me a while to jump onto the FitBit wagon but I am so glad I did! I love this because I can set daily and weekly goals, check my heart rate during my exercises, and review my sleep habits plus can see a text or call come through while I’m on the treadmill. I also use Map My Run and Map My Ride to help me train. They are a great place to record stats.

 


Prism
– This is a great app to help me stay on top of my bills. I set reminders of upcoming bills, can see when my next paycheck is coming in compared to upcoming bills, and it even has a feature to allow me to pay my bills through the app.

 


Wildflowers
– I love this app! This is a wonderful app to practice Mindful Meditation with. You can choose your mood and it will suggest guided meditations based on your mood. The music and voices are soothing and relaxing. Great for a quick before bedtime meditation.

 


PicMonkey
– I have been using PicMonkey for a while for editing photos for my blog. Having an app has been great for editing pics for social media posts. I can crop quickly and easily to fit different social media sites using their templates, edit lighting, add text, and add additional filters.

 

 

This post may contain affiliate links. For more information please reference my disclosure page. All opinions are my own. 

How To Be Kind With Tough People & Situations

Life can be tough. It can be complex, and sometimes the people that you encounter can be challenging to communicate with. But even in moments of frustration, kindness will always prevail.

How to be Kind Even in Tough Situations:

1.) Take a deep breath before you respond. Use the breath to slow your words, control your body language, and let it flow through you calming your thoughts.

2.) Change your perspective. Maybe their fight isn’t really with you. Maybe they’re frustrated with the situation as a whole or maybe they have a whole separate inner battle surging through them. Maybe they’re having a bad day. Remember that patience is a virtue. If the tables were turned, would you hope someone would be patient and understanding with you?

3.) Ask questions. Questions are a very powerful tool in building healthy communication. Ask with the genuine intent of understanding.

4.) Choose your words wisely and from the heart. Don’t attack in response. Use positive and encouraging words in your conversation. Keep an open mind.

5.) Choose your battles. Sometimes you just need to give up and leave the fight. It may not be the time for the solution to present itself, it may need some sitting time. Or even in some cases, there is no solution.

6.) Allow them to have space to take responsibility for their own emotions. We can’t fix people, we can’t save people, and we can’t make people happy. We are each responsible for our own emotions and moods and we each deserve the room to move through them and process them on our own sometimes.

7.) Breathe again…and keep breathing. Breathing deeply will keep your heart rate down and help you stay in control no matter how tense a situation gets.

We cannot always control what happens in life or who we have to deal with but what we can control is our reactions and how we respond. This is what will set you apart, this is what will make you stronger, calmer, and happier. Discipline yourself to be kind in all situations.