Category Archives: People

10 Reasons Why You’re AWESOME!

1. You have a gorgeous smile.

You really do. The whole world becomes brighter when you smile.

2. You’re doing the best that you can.

I know you are. You may not know where you’re going, or what to do next, but one thing is for sure, you’re doing your best. And that’s enough.

3. You’re a kickass dancer.

C’mon, don’t pretend it’s not true.

4. You have a big heart.

The way you love and care for others is amazing. Never stop loving like you do.

5. You’re so good at what you do.

It’s true – you totally rock!

6. You inspire people.

Believe it. You won’t ever know just how many people you inspire every day, but I can tell you now that you inspire me just by being who you are.

7. You are loved.

Truth.

8. You’re not perfect.

You are awesomely imperfect. I love that about you.

9. You never give up.

After everything you’ve been through, all the challenges you’ve overcome, you’re still here. You’ve proven that you can handle anything that comes your way. Be proud.

10. You put the YOU in beaYOUtiful.

And don’t you forget it!

Stay Awesome! 😀

Jen ♥

*My recent post Enough was just featured on the beautiful Kind Over Matter blog! 😀 Check it out!

Wise Words: Keep It Simple.

“I can express gratitude for the simple act of being able to breathe in and breathe out. I can move away from darkness and depression to light and hope.

I can be happy with who I am, not what I should be, or what I might have been, or what someone tells me I must be.

I am me, the true me; you are you, the true you – and that’s good. That’s beautiful. That’s enough.”

~ Janet Jackson

How AWESOME is this quote? So simple, yet so true.

I guess, when it comes down to it, life actually is pretty simple.

We breathe in, we breathe out. We drink, we eat. We rest, we move. We laugh, we love. We give, we receive. We share, we thank.

The real truth is, life is simple. It’s not complicated, it’s not hard, and it’s not unfair.

We are the ones who complicate it with our worries, we are the ones who choose to see it as hard, we are the ones who choose to live as victims rather than empower ourselves to live our best lives.

I am me, and you are you. It’s as simple as that. We are alive, we are healthy, we are loved, and we are blessed. That is enough.

And if you take the time, even just thirty seconds, to count your blessings for today, you might just see that what you have is, in fact, much more than enough.

Keep it simple.

Jen ♥

*MARCH already? 2011 is flying by! Now is a great time to go back and revisit the 2011 Virtual Vision Wall! Stay motivated, stay inspired, and most of all, stay AWESOME! 🙂

*My Smiling Heart was just featured on Positively Present, in a post called “be amazing anyway: self-love wrap-up + resources!” Check it out here 🙂

*Thank you to My Smiling Heart reader, Karen, for sharing this quote on Facebook and inspiring this Wise Words post! 🙂

Enough.

 

“Enough already with the stuff that doesn’t enhance who you really are.”

~ Oprah Winfrey

 

Enough already!

Enough already with looking in the mirror and not loving what you see.

Enough already with living in excess, filling your house, life and body with things that won’t ever bring you happiness or give you the love that you can only find within yourself.

Enough already with the labeling, judging and hating of those who you choose to see as ‘different’.

Enough already with bringing others down because you are afraid that their success will make you feel inferior.

Enough already with blaming your weight, your age, your spouse, your friends, your children, your boss, your parents, the service at the supermarket, the line at the post office, the younger generation, the price of petrol, the state of the world. Do something about it.

Enough already with not seeing beauty in everything.

Enough already with not letting your intuition guide you.

Enough already with not laughing hysterically every single day.

Enough already with letting the media dictate how you feel about yourself.

Enough already with thinking that there’s nothing you can do.

Enough already with not following your heart and living the life that you deserve.

Enough already with lying to yourself, denying who you are, and ignoring the screams of your soul.

Enough already with feeling inferior.

Enough already with standing by and doing nothing as children starve, women are raped, men are killed, animals are tortured, and the earth is poisoned.

Enough already with thinking there is only one true path to God.

Enough already with believing that any God is worth killing for.

Enough already with letting one small thing ruin your whole day.

Enough already with being afraid.

Enough already with the hate.

Enough already with thinking that there is any living creature on this earth that doesn’t deserve to feel love.

Enough already with looking outside for all the answers that can only be found within you.

Enough already with the excuses.

Enough already with using the number on the scale as a measure of self-worth.

Enough already with taking our anger and insecurities out on others.

Enough already with thinking that you aren’t enough.

Enough already with trying to deny that we are all connected.

Enough already with thinking that you don’t deserve a life full of love, passion, purpose, and happiness.

Enough already with judging your worth by what others think of you.

Enough already with being ashamed of your imperfections.

Enough already with letting other people have power over you.

Enough already with hiding who you really are.

Enough already with not dancing like nobody’s watching.

Enough already with trying to fit in.

Enough already with seeing vulnerability as a weakness.

Enough already with dumbing yourself down or creating drama to get attention from others.

Enough already with the drama.

Enough already with thinking life’s not fair.

Enough already with focusing on the colour of the skin instead of on the heart within.

Enough already with staying in your comfort zone.

Enough already with the inequality.

Enough already with thinking your way is the only way.

Enough already with punishing yourself.

Enough already with the inaction.

Enough already with thinking that who you love is more important than the love itself.

Enough already with avoiding doing the things that scare you.

Enough already with giving up when it gets tough.

Enough already with not accepting others for who they are.

Enough already with seeing obstacles as failures.

Enough already with thinking that the past equals your future.

Enough already with needing to be right all the time.

Enough already with not learning from our past.

Enough already with the regrets.

Enough already with thinking it’s too late.

Enough already with the guilt.

Enough already with being a victim.

Enough already with the blame.

Enough already with the revenge.

Enough already with thinking you don’t have anything to be thankful for.

Enough already with condemning others for following their hearts.

Enough already with not showing kindness to everyone you meet.

Enough already with being anything but yourself.

Enough already with the denial.

Enough already with not taking care of yourself.

Enough already with waiting for somebody else to do it.

Enough already with not seeing how amazing you are.

Enough already with living with a closed mind and heart.

Enough already with resisting change.

Enough already with spending your time with people who bring you down.

Enough already with sending hate and negativity out into the world.

Enough already with forgetting that everyone in this world just wants to be happy.

Enough already with thinking you aren’t powerful.

Enough already with thinking that you don’t have anything to offer the world.

Enough already with settling for less than you deserve.

Enough already with letting your daughter learn how to hate herself by watching you hate yourself.

Enough already with letting your son think showing his emotions makes him weak and showing violence makes him tough.

Enough already with thinking that what’s popular is always right.

Enough already with thinking we can survive while the earth dies.

Enough already with believing everything we are told.

Enough already with thinking it’s not our problem.

Enough already with not using our lives to make this world a better place.

Enough already with thinking it can’t be done.

Enough already with thinking that you can’t change the world.

Enough already with thinking that you don’t have a beautiful smile.

Enough already with hiding that smile from the world.

Enough already with forgetting that everyone is doing the best that they can.

Enough already with denying that your thoughts create your world.

Enough already with not doing the things that make you happy.

Enough already with hiding the Goddess that you really are.

Enough already with spending your life worrying about things that never happen.

Enough already with associating ‘different’ with ‘wrong’.

Enough already with ignoring your divinity.

Enough already with the oppression.

Enough already with the ignorance.

Enough already with using fear to control others.

Enough already with not seeing that it’s always the children who suffer the most.

Enough already with wishing for world peace but not creating it within yourself.

Enough already with rejecting something just because you don’t understand it.

Enough already with thinking that you can’t choose happiness.

Enough already with forgetting that everyone is somebody’s son, daughter, brother, sister, father, mother or friend.

Enough already with not learning from your mistakes.

Enough already with trying to be perfect.

Enough already with forgetting how blessed you are.

Enough already with the excess.

Enough already with not smiling at yourself in the mirror.

Enough already with following the paths of others instead of creating your own.

Enough already with trying to do everything at once.

Enough already with not living in the moment.

Enough already with thinking you can truly love others without truly loving yourself.

Enough already with the ego.

Enough already with not seeing the lesson in every experience.

Enough already with not showing gratitude.

Enough already with not seeing your own awesomeness.

Enough.


You have everything you need within you. Take hold of your power and choose to live the life you deserve.

Enough already with everything else.

 

 

Jen ♥

Wise Words: Bohemian Musings

Today marks the beginning of a new monthly segment on My Smiling Heart, in which I interview inspiring, passionate, and creative women about how they are following their bliss and living a positive life.

Our first amazing guest couldn’t be more fitting of this description!

Jessika Gilker is a Free Spirit who spends her time taking pictures, doing yoga on the beach and travelling off the beaten path in her quest to live a full authentic life. She lives in Greece where her and her husband run Fresko, a Juice Bar on the Beach.

I know, AWESOME, right? 😀

I discovered Jess’ blog, Bohemian Musings, only a few weeks ago, but I’ve already been so inspired by her journey and wisdom, I just had to ask her to be the first My Smiling Heart interviewee!

What encouraged you to start Bohemian Musings?

I started Bohemian Musings in the New Year on a whim, wanting to learn more about the world of Information Technology, as well as explore my Passion for writing and photography.

I soon realized that starting this blogging journey was opening me up to a whole new world of personal growth. The reasons that motivate me now to continue this journey are:

  • I want to Challenge myself on a whole new level and expose my Thoughts, Feelings and Inspirations for the world to see. Being vulnerable is scary but can teach you so much about yourself. I’m introspective by nature. I spend a lot of time with my thoughts in my head and tend to share them only with my closest entourage. So this is a way to set those thoughts free.
  • Since I’ve chosen to live an Unconventional life by society’s standards and have found success and happiness on my personal journey, I hope I can help others see that it’s not out of their reach either. Meeting really cool, like-minded individuals (like yourself) is an added bonus of being a blogger.

Do you know what things you need to do on a regular basis in order to maintain your happiness? What are they?

Keeping my body, mind and spirit balanced is what leads to my happiness. Attaining that balance requires me to be conscious in all areas of my life as not one thing makes me whole but several together. They are:

Yoga is my salvation, it keeps me centered and in the present moment, while laughing and being around the people I love is what makes it worthwhile.

Writing, photography and design are what I need to do regularly to let my creative energy free and being curious and learning keeps my life fresh and exciting.

My strong interest in nutrition and my vegetarian lifestyle keep me healthy and ready to pursue my frequent adventures even if it’s exploring something on my doorstep that I’ve never seen before.

Making sure to spend time alone each day to reconnect with my thoughts allows me to be rejuvenated and ready for whatever life throws at me.

What advice would you give to someone who is going through a challenging time?

Don’t give up. Challenges, fear, and self-doubt are all part of the journey.

Roadblocks are placed strategically on our path to see just how badly we want something. If you persevere you will succeed.

Instead of viewing obstacles negatively, and allowing them to stop you from your goals, ask yourself what lesson you can gain from what is happening. As long as you are following your passions and being true to yourself you will make it. Remember, that those who fail and quit, are usually just around the corner from turning their dreams to reality.

Why do you think it is so important that we make our own paths in life rather than follow the paths of others?

Following anyone else’s path in life except your own will only lead to misery because it means ignoring your inner voice.

I tried it by wearing a white lab coat and studying bacteria, but it quickly ate away at my being until there was no other solution but to accept that this was not for me. Instead of ignoring what was left of my soul, I chose to listen to its cries.

My intuition served me well, and I was soon on my way to a dream internship doing research on Loggerhead Sea Turtles in a small village I never heard of in a country that I had never really given much thought. The next 6 months gave me time to reflect and realize where and what I wanted to be and following my inner voice has led me to achieving more than I could have ever imagined.

We weren’t created to follow others. We all have unique talents that we need to share. The universe wants to help us achieve our dreams but we must first believe in ourselves.

If we spent less time comparing ourselves to others and more time realizing that being unique is a blessing, something to be cultivated and then taken and served to the world as we see fit then we could all be happy on our own unique paths.

What has creating your own path in life taught you most?

If you can Dream it, you can do it.

Any goal, or dream that I have pursued with all my heart, strength and courage, I have achieved. Some have come easy, others have tested every last ounce of power from my being, but through hard work and perseverance, they have become a reality. I also learned that I was much more strong than I gave myself credit for and to always trust my intuition.

What wise words do you live by?

Live. Love. Laugh. Three simple words that individually hold such a strong message. They are the three ingredients to a happy and successful life.

What is something you are really proud of?

I’m really proud that I had the strength and courage to know that I had to choose my own way from an early age. I’m happy I went to University and tried the career route early on, so that there are no doubts in my head about which is best for me. I’m proud to be living my journey on my own terms.

Professionally speaking, Fresko, my Juice Bar in Greece is a joint effort of creativity and love that my husband and I have made a reality and I’m real proud of our success.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given? Who gave it to you?

I was lucky to have a very wise and supportive father, who was also a free spirit in his own right.

He always made me believe that I could achieve anything, and that no dream was crazy as long as it’s what I really wanted and worked hard to attain it. He instilled great confidence within me and gave me space to make my own decisions from a very young age.

He set me on the path to think for myself and I surely would not be where I am today without such a great influence.

What are you most grateful for?

My life. My family. Being a Generalist (Jack of all Trades) has opened me up to so many opportunities and has helped to push me in the direction I am in today. If I didn’t have the ability to be passionate about 101 things at the same time (Yes, it’s normal), then I would not be where I am. My passions lead me to more passions and in turn to adventures that have opened door after door in my life.

How do you want to inspire people?

My hope is that if someone can find one positive or inspiring message or idea from something I have written or experienced and can add it to their own life and it allows them to take a step closer to a goal or dream then that would make me happy.

Life is so short and so beautiful, I just want to inspire people to open their eyes and take a deep breath and really see what’s around them, then LIVE, but according to their own rules.

What makes your heart smile?

So many simple things 🙂 Sunrises, yoga on the beach, a good book, bird’s singing, the exhilaration in discovering a new place through Travel, my husband’s laughter, Broadway, my Spaniel, Murt and Harry my rescued cats from Croatia, inspiring blogs, music, bright colors, vegetarian/vegan restaurants, Organic Fair Trade Coffee, Champagne, Sunsets and the list goes on and on….

Join Jessika on her Journey at Bohemian Musings, where she blogs about her thoughts and inspirations on how to live an Unconventional life straight to your dreams. Follow her on Twitter @bohemianmusings.

Hope you enjoyed the first My Smiling Heart interview!

Keep Smiling! 😀

Jen ♥

*A big THANK YOU to each and every one of you! Because of you, I reached my goal of making it to 50 fans on the My Smiling Heart facebook page by my 24th Birthday! You ROCK! 😀


*Did you see my guest post on The Mad To Live? I was asked to write about what I would say in a message in a bottle – so much fun! 😀 Check it out here!


*Another big THANK YOU to everyone who participated in Friday’s ‘Share The Love, Share Your Links’ event on the facebook page, it was so AWESOME learning more about all of you through your blogs – looking forward to doing it all again this Friday! 😀

Sharing The Love This Valentine’s Day

Photo by Jen

Happy Valentine’s Day to all the smiling hearts out there!

I hope you are having a love-filled day, not matter what your Facebook relationship status says.

To share the love, I’ve made a list of some of my favourite blog posts from some of the most inspiring bloggers I know.

Read through the ones that pop out to you, remember the wisdom it holds, and go smile at yourself in the mirror 🙂

 

Positively Present:

Using The Four Agreements To Increase Self-Love

 

The Happiness Project:

Six Tips For Boosting Your Sense Of Self-Respect

 

I Want Her Job:

Abiola Abrams: Define Who You Are Clearly, And Never Give Up.


The Bold Life:

60 Ways To Become The Person You Love

 

Sarah Wilson:

Sunday Life: In Which I Be Thoroughly Me

 

Bohemian Musings:

Simply Smile

 

The Mad To Live:

Do You Remember How To Truly, Deeply Feel?

 

Tiny Buddha:

May You Have Many Worries

 

Urban Soul Retrieval:

Get Stupid, Really Really Stupid

 

The Kind Life:

Fable Of The Porcupine

 

Kind Over Matter:

How To Rock This Trip Around The Sun

 

Keep Smiling! 🙂

Jen ♥

Wise Words: Long Way Round

Hello beautiful people!

Are you AWESOME today? I certainly hope so 🙂

Well, I’m back from a seriously amazing week in Beijing, which I will write about soon, but for now here is another edition of Wise Words. Enjoy!

“We’ve come this far, & people’s faces have changed & people’s houses have changed, & people’s beliefs may have changed, but ultimately we’re not any different from one another, you know? We all love our kids, we all need somewhere to sleep, we all need some food… We’re not all that different.”

~ Ewan McGregor


The very handsome & charming Ewan McGregor (whose name is so fun to say in a Scottish accent. Go on.. say it 🙂 ) said these wise words during an episode of his awesome series ‘Long Way Round’, which is my latest obsession.

In the show (which is also now a book & another series), Ewan & his best mate, Charley, ride their motorbikes from London to New York, travelling through countries such as France, Slovakia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, & Russia.

I have to admit, at first I was really only watching it because I have a tiny crush on Mr McGregor (who doesn’t?) & I love seeing actors being so raw & discovering what they’re like without a script. But I’ve completely fallen in love with everything about the show, from learning about places like Kazakhstan & Russia to the hilarity & complete honesty of Ewan & Charley’s friendship.

One of my favourite funny moments includes the guys fixing one of their bikes on the side of a road, a car stops to see what’s going on & Ewan (aka Obi Wan) says ‘These are not the bikes you’re looking for’. Love it! 😀

It is so awesome to see two mates leaving everything behind for a few months & embarking on such an amazing adventure. The challenges they face are overwhelming, yet they never once give up or lose sight of their goal of getting to New York.

Their positive attitudes throughout the whole experience, & the awareness they have of themselves & how their mindsets affect their experiences, is an inspiration. Ewan in particular is very thoughtful in his reflections of the experiences they have, recognising the challenges as ‘tests’ that will make them stronger & make their memories of their travels that much sweeter.

Even though I’ve only travelled to a few places, mostly in Australia, then the USA when I was 17, & more recently, China, I can still really relate to this quote.

With all of the differences that set me apart from the 1.3 billion people in this country, at our core, we are all the same. We all need to eat, we all need somewhere to sleep at night, & we all need to feel love, & we all just want to be healthy & happy.

Being here for exactly seven months now, I’ve become quite accustomed to all the differences, the oddities, & the things that I once found so frustrating.

Now, I can recognise myself in everyone that I see, in the tired eyes of the workers on the street, the curiosity of the taxi drivers & the smiling faces of the children. In fact, what I’ve noticed most recently since being here in China, isn’t the spitting or the pushing or anything negative, it’s the smiling.

It started because we get stared at a lot here, & my natural reaction to anyone staring at me is to smile, & straight away they smile back. From the ancient & hunchbacked old man that lives in our building to people in the shopping malls & all the children we see every day, they all smile back.

It doesn’t matter that my skin is lighter than theirs, that I speak a different language or that I do things differently, when we smile at each other, there are no differences.

A smile is all it takes to know we are all the same.

And people are almost always willing to help us. Being in a foreign country, we often get confused or a bit lost, but there has always been someone there who has gone out of their way to try to talk to us & help us find our way again. And as I watched Ewan & Charley travel through 12 different countries, my heart smiled to see that there are people like that all over the world.

So, the moral of this story is one that seems to pop up a lot on this blog: smiling can change the world.

Smile at yourself, & you have a happy heart; smile at a stranger, & you have given someone else a happy heart.

Who have you smiled at today?

While we are on the subject of Ewan McGregor, here’s another quote of his that I love:

“I fight cynicism. It’s too easy. It’s really boring. It’s much harder to be positive and see the wonder of everything. Cynicism is a bunch of people who aren’t as talented as other people, knocking them because they make them feel even more untalented.”

Awesome!

Keep Smiling!

Jen ♥

A Little Something For You

Hello awesome people!

As a part of the art subject that I’m doing online, I had to make a 30 second stop motion animation. I decided to make something with a positive message, that I could share with all of you – my amazing readers, twitter followers & facebook fans.

Keep in mind though, this is the first time I’ve ever done any sort of animation work, so apologies for it’s not-so-good quality! I hope you like it anyway 🙂

Everything You Need Is Within from Jen Saunders on Vimeo.

In other news, you may remember me mentioning something called the Love Bomb a few months back, well this week’s recipient is someone I know & respect. Brianne, the inspiring woman who runs I Want Her Job & ran the Likes For Learning campaign that I helped out with recently, lost her best friend in a car accident this week.

As part of the Love Bomb mission, people visit Brianne’s latest blog post & leave her a supportive, love-filled comment. It would mean a lot if my readers joined me in supporting Brianne through this hard time, so please leave a comment here.

I’ve said it before & I’ll say it again:

Kind words never go to waste.

Also, Mike & I are heading to Beijing tomorrow night to celebrate Chinese New Year. I’ll be gone for a week, & I’ll try my best to get online & post when I can, but it will take me longer than usual to respond to all your fantastic comments, tweets, messages & emails. Don’t let that stop you from saying hello or leaving comments, though! I love hearing from you 🙂

Keep Smiling!

Jen ♥

Wise Words: Being Bold

This week’s Wise Words post is a bit different. Recently, I was interviewed by the lovely Tess Marshall from The Bold Life, & it has just been published!

For anyone unfamiliar with The Bold Life, it’s an amazingly inspirational self-development blog that always provides wise insights & encourages everyone to live boldly & speak their truth. I was absolutely thrilled to be interviewed for such an awesome blog & am so excited to share this great news with you all!

The questions I was asked for the interview were so challenging, they really made me think a lot more about who I am & how I could still live a much bolder life. If you are feeling particularly bold yourself today, I encourage you to take a look at some of the questions I was asked & take some time to think about what your own answers might be. You might be surprised!

So, head over to The Bold Life & check out ‘A Bold Artist With A Smiling Heart‘ 🙂

Feel free to comment on it after, I’d love to know what you think!

In other news, I’ve been working on a few little goodies for you guys, hopefully to be posted over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out! 😀

Go smile at yourself,

Jen ♥

The Importance Of Self-Acceptance

“I highly recommend inviting the worst-case scenario into your life.”

~ Portia de Rossi in Unbearable Lightness


I love books that change my life, & I just finished reading ‘Unbearable Lightness – A Story Of Loss & Gain’, by Portia de Rossi, &  it has already had a profound affect on the way I see the world.

It is such an amazing book. I couldn’t put it down.

In this beautiful memoir, de Rossi describes her childhood, her early career as a model, & her rise to fame after being cast in the hit show of the 90s, Ally McBeal.

But this isn’t just a book about Hollywood or an autobiography detailing the fairytale life of a seemingly normal girl from Geelong (near my hometown of Melbourne), Australia.

It’s so much more than that.

It’s about a girl who grew up feeling as though she wasn’t pretty enough or worthy enough to be loved by anyone, including herself. It’s about a girl who feels lost, & overwhelmed by the pressure to look, think & act a certain way in order to gain the approval of others & ‘fit in’. But most of all, it’s about a girl who, after overcoming the hardest challenges of her life, learns to love & accept herself for who she really is.

Isn’t that something we can all relate to?

De Rossi describes in detail how the pressure of the media & her low self-esteem lead her to anorexia & bulimia, & how terrified she was of the world finding out about her sexuality.

Portia reveals all of her vulnerabilities, sharing every thought she had about herself & about food during that dark time, from her extreme exercise routines & weighing small portions of food to the paranoia & anxiety at the thought of fat cells growing on her body.

This book has really opened my eyes & helped me to gain some sort of understanding of what it is like to have an eating disorder; the thoughts, the perceptions, the anxiety, & the lying & maintenance that is required to keep up such a painful ritual.

I don’t know if I’ve ever read a book as heartbreakingly honest & authentic as Unbearable Lightness. There’s nothing I love more than someone who is brave enough to be their complete authentic self, imperfections & all.

This is a must read for anyone who has ever felt less than or has struggled with self-acceptance. I’ve even read a few opinions of the book from girls living with eating disorders, saying they really related to de Rossi’s story & found it comforting to know that they weren’t alone in their illness & that there really is hope for recovery.

As for me, this book has made me question how much I focus on the way I look, & the ending was so beautiful, truthful, & wise that I don’t think I will ever stress about food or weight or exercise ever again.

Unbearable Lightness has helped me to discover more about myself & accept myself more than I ever have before.

I am who I am, whether that be straight or bisexual. It doesn’t matter.

And I look the way I look, whether that be a size 8 or a size 14. It doesn’t matter.

All that matters is that I love & accept myself for exactly who I am.

And the same goes for you.

You are who you are, & who you are is AWESOME.

It doesn’t matter what your sexuality is, what colour your skin is, what language you speak, how much you weigh or anything like that. All that matters is that you can accept yourself for who you are, & love yourself, flaws & all.

I’ll finish with another quote:

“The hotness is not about age, looks, body type, race – it is about honesty, knowing who you are and being who you are, without trying to front like you are better than you are. It is about the deep down authenticity of self, then living it, loving it and looking it.”

~ Margaret Cho

Keep Smiling!

Jen ♥

Four Steps To Re-Awesomofication!

Hmmm… Do I use the word ‘awesome’ just a little too much? Oh well!

Hey, you! Yes, YOU!

You know you’re AWESOME, right?

What ever you’re doing right now, whether you are drinking your morning cup of coffee, stressing over your daily to-do-list, or sitting on the couch in your pajamas (10 points to anyone who is doing all three!), ask yourself this:

Am I feeling relaxed?

Notice your shoulders, your neck, jaw & anything else that feels tense.

Now do what ever you need to do to relax. Sit back in your chair for a second & just… sit. When was the last time you just sat? Not watching TV, not typing or Googling or stalking people on Facebook, just sitting with your head back & your arms relaxed by your side?

If you’re like me, you probably never do that. So stop whatever you’re doing & just sit, be still. Do it now. I’ll join you 🙂

…………………….

…………………….

……………………

Welcome back!

Now, take a moment to breathe. Right now.

Not a little, half-arsed breath. Put some effort into it. Stop whatever else you are doing – forget about the to-do-list for just a second – & slowly, take in a big, deep breath.

Breathe in.

Hold it.

And let it go. Slowly.

Do it again.

One last time. Breathe in. And out.

Feeling your awesomeness, yet?

If not, try it again. Really pay attention to your breath. Focusing on your breathing is a quick & easy way to bring yourself into the present moment, the only moment that matters – because all we really have is right now.

I lost touch of that today, & when I lose touch, I forget my own awesomeness. I was pushing myself too hard, stressing out & trying to accomplish a thousand & one things all at the same time. As always, that lead to me feeling frustrated, overwhelmed, & extremely tense.

Luckily, I know myself pretty well, especially lately, so once I become aware that I’m not feeling as awesome as I’d like to, I immediately begin the process of re-awesomofying myself.

My Four Steps To Re-Awesomofication:

1. Breathe.

The deep breathing & centering exercise that I just described is usually my first step. Breathe in…. Aaand out 🙂

2. Dance.

Put on your favourite playlist of songs. Songs that are positive, upbeat & just so fantastic that your awesome levels have no choice but to rise. It’s just like the slime from Ghostbusters 2 that (spoiler alert!) dances & comes alive to the music – only without that creepy Viggo guy from the painting (Random Fact: My number 1 fear? Viggo. *shudder*).

3. Vent.

Talk it out. Hearing yourself talk about the things that you’re freaking out about internally will always make you realise that you are okay, that it’s not as bad as you thought it was, & that you can totally handle it.

Most of the time I talk to Mike or my Mum or Dad, but if there’s no-one to talk to I’ll write about what’s worrying me, which is just as good.

4. Laugh.

Lastly, invest some time in something that will make you laugh. It can be a TV show or a classic funny movie, otherwise there’s always Youtube, or talk to people who always make you laugh – for me it’s Mike or my brother 🙂

By the end of all this, your awesomeness will be back to a healthy level & you’ll be ready to handle anything that comes your way!

But, of course, I do have a back-up plan for those rare occassions when all this doesn’t get me the results I want; sleep. If these 4 steps to re-awesofication don’t lead me back to my usual awesome self, then chances are I’m just exhausted & need to get some rest!

What do you do to re-awesomofy yourself & your life?

Do you have any kickass steps that need to be added to this list? I’d love to hear them! 🙂

Keep Smiling!

Jen ♥