#Cultivate16 Day 21: Intention

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 31, 2016

-Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering 'it will be happier…'- Alfred Tennyson
What is/ are your intention(s) for 2016?

My intentions for 2016 are:

  • Exercise to become healthier and strong
  • Give up lactose/ casein and soy and limit caffeine to one cup of tea and one cup of coffee for Lent
  • Plan a guest prompt series for May (possibly moving Cultivate to May from now on)
  • Purchase a newer-to-us vehicle
  • Find a new place to live
  • Decide if I want to go back to school, what for, and where
  • Finally update my blog and website
  • Actively pursuing tutoring and consulting clients again
  • Go out with friends about once a month or so
  • Restore family traditions that have become muddled over the last three years

I hope to keep up with these intentions during the year, but I’ve always enjoyed yearly intentions better than resolutions. A yearly focus makes me feel like I’m accomplishing my goals, even if it’s a slow progress.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 20: Follow Your Heart

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 30, 2016

There is no denying the wild horse in us. Virginia Woolf
What part of you is begging to come out?

My free spirit wants to come out and play. I’m dying to take off on an adventure and then lay around doing nothing as I please. I want to experiment in my kitchen to my heart’s content. I want to feel the wind in my hair and the sun on my face. I want to write and take photos. I want to sleep until the sun’s up and stay up late to see the stars. I want to live everyday like I’m on summer vacation. Or winter break. Or spring break. It doesn’t matter. I want that feeling of freedom and contentment. The question is how do I balance that with the very real need to making a living?

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 19: Foodie Friday

Filed under: cultivate,Foodie Friday — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 29, 2016

-People who love to eat are always the best people.- Julia Child
What would you like to make or eat this year? With whom?

I’d like to bake birthday cakes this year, just as I always do. I’d like to try my hand at the peanut butter cup cheesecake again, and sit with my family as we savor each creamy bite. I want to experiment with more recipes and cooking methods, and my favorite eating companions have always been my family. I’d love to meetup with friends, though. I’m hoping to go out for coffee and dessert with more than a couple of friends — because what could be better than caffeine and sugar with good company?

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 18: Community

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 28, 2016

-The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.- Mark Twain
How can you cheer up those around you?

Even when I was younger, people knew me for my smile. A dentist nicknamed me “Smiley,” in fact. I’ve been smiling at others partly because it’s part of my personality and partly because it helps soften the people I’m around. It’s hard to be upset when you’re smiling or when someone’s smiling at you. I offer an ear and a shoulder to cry on — and I can promise you that if you’ve ever told me not to share it with someone else, I’ve kept my mouth shut. I’ve been offering this prompt series as a means to not only help myself but to also help others see the beauty in life and themselves. I want others to know that the world is a beautiful place with a plethora of opportunities to be happy. I’m going to keep doing so. I’m going to share my smile. I’m going to share jokes. I’m going to share words of inspiration. I’ll probably even share sweet, fattening treats because it’s hard to be sad when you’ve got some indulgent in front of you!

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 17: Appreciate

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 27, 2016

-Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest things that we’ll ever do.- Brene Brown
How can you love yourself better?

I certainly struggle with this self-care stuff. I don’t always sleep when I need it. I haven’t been drinking my water like I should. Being sleep deprived and dehydrated usually leaves me feeling like sitting around doing nothing and achy. As a result, I don’t workout like I should, which at my age is going to cause a lot more harm than it used to. I’m in my early 30s, so I’m about to see a decline in my flexibility and strength. I’ve seen elders who’ve allowed their health to decline, and I see how limited their mobility is. I don’t want that life for myself, and it’s time to love myself. It’s time to appreciate the fact that I cannot function the way other people function, and I shouldn’t feel guilty because I can’t run on fumes like some other people do. I need to own it, nurture it, and be fully myself. If I’m thirsty, I don’t care how fast you want me to complete a task — I’m stopping to drink my water. I’ll function so much better for it. If I’m tired, I’m going to lay down. Let me sleep, for when I wake I shall move mountains. I’m going to make time to take care of myself this year no matter what. It’s going to take the majority of the year and a lot of baby steps, but I vow to take better care of myself with each passing day. I also vow to forgive myself for days that I don’t reach my goals or adhere to my intentions.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 16: Affirmation

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 26, 2016

-Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.- Carl Jung
What is your heart trying to tell you?

My heart is trying to tell me to stay open. Remain open to possibilities of all sorts while I focus on restoring myself in 2016. Remain open to letting nurture follow me for as long as it needs to. Remain open to the stories of others, rather than assuming their intentions and attitudes. My heart is telling me to stay open and offer a smile to all I meet, whether I feel happy or think highly of the other person. I must stay open to being kind even to the unkind. I must stay open to seeing the bigger picture. I will allow my heart to open wide during 2016.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 15: Action

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 25, 2016

-You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.- John C. Maxwell
What can you do daily to change your life?

Each day, I can drink enough water. I can prepare healthy, nourishing foods to fill my body with strength and energy. I can write in my journal each day. I can stretch my muscles and meditate. I can wake up ready to give myself what I need most — whether that’s a full day of work and/ or play or plenty of rest. I just have to ask myself daily what I need.

Use the links below to share or keep in touch. Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 14: Dreams

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 24, 2016

-All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.- Walt Disney

Tell us about your dreams. How will you bravely pursue them this year?

I know this year I won’t reach my dreams, and that’s okay. You see, I want to buy a house, run a lifestyle business, and spend my days however I please. That takes time and effort, so I know I can’t expect to see those dreams come true by December 31st. However, I know I can work towards fulfilling my dreams, and I want to be brave. I’ve got to clean up my credit so I can buy a house. I have to redesign my website and hone my marketing skills so I can build my business. I have to decide what I’d like to do for a living and build it around my life. I will work hard this year so that in the following years I won’t have to work as hard.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 13: Voice

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 23, 2016

-People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.- John C. Maxwell
Does your attitude express how you want to be heard? How can you change your tone to let your voice be clearer?

I can be meek and timid at times. I think this gives off the mistaken expression that I’m weaker than I truly am. I’m non confrontational, and I prefer not to indulge drama. However, this doesn’t mean that I’m a push-over. Over the years I’ve learned when to speak up, and I’ve bordered on advocacy in some situations. I want to be heard as gentle yet firm. I want my tone to indicate that I’m both calm and serious while still having a sense of humor.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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#Cultivate16 Day 12: Happiness

Filed under: cultivate — Meredith @ 10:00 am January 22, 2016

-Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling.- Margaret Lee Runbeck
What do you do to practice happiness? How can you practice happiness daily?

Each day I start three lists: five things I’m grateful for, five things I accomplished, and five things that bring me happiness. I write a messy list of concerns, then I write a page. Writing out my concerns, things to be thankful for, things I’ve accomplished, things that make me happy, and my general thoughts helps clear my mind and brighten my mood. Over the last three years, I’ve been a little less likely to maintain this daily practice, so I’m trying my best to improve my writing habit during 2016.

In addition to my daily writing practice, I plan to embrace each moment as a chance for happiness. I can choose to see the negative in a situation, or I can choose to see the positive. While I know it’s impossible to always be happy and always find the bright side, I intend to mindfully practice happiness on a daily basis.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting here on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.

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