FORWARD Moving

Every step is worth the effort
Sometimes it takes a little work to move forward, but it’s worth every step!

I love this picture.  I found it several years ago, online.  I think it was a plaque for sale on some site.

 It was a tough few months at work and there were serious issues at home.  I was beyond understanding any of it because I couldn’t focus on either.  Sleepless nights ensued and a short temper was the gift my sweet hubs endured.  My health started to decline. Not eating correctly, joint pain and my hair even started thinning.

It’s what happens, if you live long enough and you aren’t prepared.

If we live long enough, life will find a way to get complicated and it seems like it will do it in several ways at the same time.  Being tired and stressed muddy’s the water, so to speak.  It makes it hard to realize the real truth of the situation.  Our personal well-being influences our understanding of the issues at hand and sometimes builds them tougher than they really are.

What I learned was to just keep moving and it will be understood later… or not. Either way, when we just accept what we cannot change, we can move forward faster and more peacefully.  No time wasting… just positive movement FORWARD.

Unless you can’t see which way is forward.

I have many ways of discovering where my Forward is… lots of contemplation and dreaming, writing in my journal, list making, reading, and daily conversation with the one that knows my personal future already.

Yep, a daily conversation with God helps me safely spill all my doubts, fears, gratefulness, appreciation, guilt, willingness, concerns and oh! so much more. A conversation has to be two ways. So after the talk, save time for the listening. He is open to you talking first, but He needs you to listen, too.

After that conversation, it’s time to do the work.  The work may appear in the form of listening, reading, researching, trying something new, spending time with loved ones and helping others.  It’s amazing what can happen when I’m washing dishes and enjoying the nature outside my window.

These are a few easy plans for finding your path Forward.  Sometimes Forward is closer than you might think.  Taking time to do the work and have the important conversation is a peaceful way to find where you may gravitate.

Start eating right. Add vitamins to your daily routine. Cut your hair short and pamper it awhile. Spend time feeling better, physically.  Walking, play on the Wii, bowling, dancing with your love before dinner or after the children fall to sleep, swimming… anything that makes your heart happy.

Short on time?

Five minutes.  For five minutes take a break between dishes and the run to town.  List 5 things you’ve never taken time to do.  Are you still interested in them?  Aha! What did you learn?

Thirty minutes.  Grab some picturesque magazines and some scissors.  Quickly, choose all the pictures that appeal to you and remove them from the magazine.  Some people glue them to boards, papers or even large envelopes.  I just spread mine out on a table in order of their importance.  Are they achievable… like buying it, or planning time for it? Add it to your budget plan! Learn the skill or find a way!

Life must continue during the search for Forward, so I find spending dedicated time spans each day will help. I like the morning. For my friend, it’s after the children go to sleep. I know a man that works full time and has a large family. His Forward search is on his solitary walk after dinner.

Keeping the trip Forward in perspective, knowing in your heart it will come in time, doing the work and being open to the direction is important.

Where will you find your Forward?  In art, music, volunteering? Will you work with numbers, with people, with pets? What a world there is out there.  Just remember to take it one step at a time.

Like the picture says, ‘Someday everything will make perfect sense’.

If you need an ear… here ya go!

The trip is well worth the time and effort!  Enjoy! After all, it’s about living better!

Morning Retreat

I love the new routine! (Previously posted in July 2017)

Wake when I choose, go through the usual morning stuff on the way to the kitchen and grab that glistening bottle of water I left on the cabinet last night.  I set it out at night to let it warm to room temperature. The rest of the day, I LOVE a cold bottle… but first… it needs to be room temperature.

Tear open some green nutrition and head for the great outdoor retreat (my office). Yes, the “office” has become the retreat instead of the cave I once enjoyed. Can you believe that?

I actually ENJOYED the cave.  It was a place of quiet contemplation, pouring over numbers and opportunities (they call it) for improvement. THAT desk was piled high in notes, books, reports and half-filled bottles of water.  I answered every issue and opportunity with positive encouragement and recommendations, and some guidance.

Trees in East Texas
I snapped this picture with my cell phone, sitting on the patio – working.

Today’s retreat is a little different.  Green all around me.  Crickets and locusts singing and an occasional helicopter taking someone for much needed care.  The sun is gentle from this point of view thanks to the shade of the beautiful trees!  They lock branches to keep the sun filtered and the air cool. The grass needs mowing, as we’ve been blessed with an abundant amount of rain this season.  God’s blessings are right in front of me. I don’t even have to look for them or imagine what He may have meant for me to see. This miracle of nature that I call my office is provided, just for me!

Sometime before I go in, I’ll answer emails, send a few messages and check my blog for private messages. I’ll finish writing this and pack up the car for tomorrow’s event.  Two more people to check on and I’m done.   The rest of the day belongs to me.

My morning simplicity makes the day go well. As a friend shared … “doing the things that makes her heart sing!”

Off to the piano… work is done for the day!   What makes your heart sing?  This day is all about living better!

Walking in Texas

Clematis bloomed for the dogs
Aren’t they scrumptious! I wish everyone, not just the dogs, could see!

The weather is beautiful!  It’s about time.

The sun is bright and the wind is fair, so it’s time to walk.

In Texas, a walk at certain times of the day will almost always include mosquitos. The little jiggers just think they belong with someone who is trying to work up or sweat…or not.  They buzz around one’s head until you feel like you will fall over from swatting. I guess they actually help increase your heart rate. That could be a blessing in the long run.

I try to remember to wear something dark so just maybe, I can hide from them.   You know, I read the herb, jojoba, is a natural repellent, so apparently that’s why those bath oils work so well.  I put a 1/2 cap full in the dog’s bath water to help her fight them off.  It’s not a product for outdoor-in-the-sun use! It’s OIL. Duh!  If you plan on being in the sun, around the water, find your SPF!

So during our walk, before I got off point, I noticed beautiful blooms in my garden! Everyone knows I have a brown thumb, so I was so excited I had to take a picture. Any beautiful thing that I don’t kill is a miracle to be sure.  So, I hope you love my picture of the clematis growing in my yard… on a trellis… facing the dog’s yard.  Ugh!

That’s right. The one thing I planted myself, that’s growing beautiful, only faces the dog’s yard! No one from the street can see  it.

Even if they are in the driveway, they can’t see it.  It’s the one plant I planted and grew successfully and my dogs are the only ones to enjoy it.

Except me.  Except you.   I hope you enjoy your walk… without any pesky tag along flying blessings. Enjoy the view.  It’s a great way to live better!

It’s a Process

Stunning photo! by Patty Black on unsplash
The time it takes to change to a beautiful creature, with a peaceful purpose, is for me!

It’s a process.

Trying to find balance in a world that was created around family and work and responsibility.  To renew beliefs that have always been there but not fully explored while off doing other things.

It’s a process to be comfortable doing nothing, or having nothing required of you except what you determine.

Photo by Patti Black on Unsplash   (beautiful, huh?)

As a young mother, the days were ordered.  Get up at the first whimper, place everything in order before the full-out assault to the morning and get everyone and everything done before running out of the house to work. After work chores included a time schedule to get everyone to bed on time and ready to repeat the morning ritual.

Hopefully, everyone leaves in a great mood, ready to attack the day with a positive attitude.  That, too, takes it’s toll.  It can be exhausting to take on the responsibility of everyone’s happiness.

As I’ve aged and they are raising their own, I see the challenges from a different perspective. I see them accepting the responsibilities with more grace than I.  I think that’s a positive thing. They have a clear direction for their families and goals for the future.  More positive to enjoy.  I see God’s blessings as they move forward with their lives.

My mom and dad retired. I mean, they actually did not work or even think about having anything else to do after they retired.  They fished, she quilted, he watched tv, they gardened, took long drives, played dominoes with church friends, helped others and they took turns bugging us on the phone.  It was sweet and I loved those little phone calls about the weather or the mosquito population.

I don’t know anyone doing that anymore.  I just don’t know them.

Everyone retiring has something else to do.  They trade stocks, write blogs, sell handmade crafts, sell antiques, sell a used car or two and some even work part time at local businesses (where they probably have a trusted connection) that need a little extra help now and then.

I have an 80+ year old friend that continues to care for one infant in her home, until  the baby can crawl.  Then they move on and she takes another for some lucky working mom who needs a grandmother to nurture her newborn while she is away. What a great job!

Many sign up to sell something. It’s the easiest thing to do.

Some just want to sell a little product they believe in.  It’s a good way to earn a little and stay sharp with business skills.  It’s a good way to contribute to social causes, too.  Selling the products that benefit the American Cancer Society, for instance.  Those who sell the products earn a little here and there and enjoy a personal discount.  Usually, 20-40%, based on their volume of designated products.  They purchase materials and pay shipping from those earnings (so take about 10-15% of those earnings away) and the sales taxes collected benefit the communities where the products are sold.

The problem is the recruiting.

Most direct sales companies have realized that using the MLM model is a money maker for them… and their top recruiters. So, why wouldn’t they offer that to everyone?  The truth is, very few recruit. Most sell and will take a recruit if they walk in the door or sign up under them.  They’ll get a small bonus for that effort and possibly a 1099 to go with it.

Those associates who choose to pursue the dream of success, using the MLM stream, are flooding the social networks, emails and all other phases of communication. There’s so much of it that now  many potential customers will not even look at the products (which could be smart purchases) because they don’t want to get flooded with opportunity reminders… over and over and over again.   I don’t blame them.

The saturation of consultants in MLM’s is great. I have seen, from experience, that there are so many more non-successful at reaching their dreams, than there are those who reach the top.  But, then… where is the “top”, for you?  HOPE.  That’s their magic.  Offering hope. Because anyone CAN, but few DO.

The saturation is so great because they tout  “start your own business” for such a small monetary investment and the “freedom to work as you please” while the newbies dream of posting on the social medias and waiting for the orders to flood the carts!  NOT! When the big offers of success disappoint, they quit.

Because the company forgot their new associate signed up to sell a few good products to their contacts and that WAS their dream. Then the companies brainwash those well meaning sales associates to buying into the HOPE.   And, the MLM label killed their initial dream.

It’s a process.

As I enter this new stage of life, I really want to sell some great products I believe in. Having worked in the industry as an employee, I have learned the value of the products and their ingredients.  While I’m not actively recruiting, I’ll gladly help anyone who does happen to sign up under me.  I’m not goal-reaching, other than buying and selling at a good return. It’s something I love to do and I hope the MLM aspect of my company will not hold me back.

This is truth. And it took me a time to come to this point.

When I first started, I went all out. I worked it like a business.  Every day I made 5 to 10 contacts and every day I posted or wrote posts for scheduling. I gave up weekends for events and spent a portion of everyday in self development.   In the first six months, I signed over 20 new associates. I earned bonuses and even a trip. It was fast and furious.  It was fun, getting to know my team and helping them get started.  Within 3 months, all but 11 are gone. Because they only wanted to sell a few products, not recruit. Because selling just a few products doesn’t make the money all the video’s and training talk about and everything the company offers as incentives, is focused on the recruiting.  They only wanted to sell!

So I asked myself.  Do I want to retire with the stress of working it like a business?  Or why did I come here?   I know, first hand what must be done.  I came here to prove a point.  I wanted to show them they chose wrong. I could do it better than most.  So, I did.   I took their bonus money, their rewards, even the trip and now I have confirmation that I don’t want to retire with the stress of working it like a business.  I want to sell a few great products.

And, I still love some of the products. And, I really like some products my friends sell.   I want to speak honestly about those products, and if someone orders from my affiliate website, I could earn a bit, but I want them to not be afraid of receiving too much spam. Did you know you can buy and then unsubscribe? A customer has a choice!

When I started blogging, my goal was to document the discovery process of my unplanned retirement.  I’ve looked into affiliate links, cottage industries and the printable market.  The thing they have in common is that they are selling something.

What I’ve learned, is it’s the same.

While it’s not a designated MLM, numbers do count.  They earn by recruiting others to their affiliate or t-shirt business or download or membership site!  It’s the same thing – without the label.  Getting attention to your site or the proper link is recruiting. It’s selling.  The payoff doesn’t come with a pre-paid trip (but you can buy your own without paying income tax on it) and you don’t need a fancy title to find your success.  The dream is the same… hope.  We hope to find joy in writing and recruiting to our affiliate(s).

It was a process.

I choose to sell a few great products that I believe in. Those products happen to be sold by some companies who also offer the MLM stream of income  – but those companies  are more than an MLM and, personally, I believe they do themselves a disservice by not finding a better balance between the earning opportunities and the product offerings.

The associates who represent the products should not be punished or held back because of that lack of balance. After all, they came here to sell a few good products with a good name to some good people who have supported the company for years and years.

I hope the MLM description of the companies that sell my favorite products, won’t kill my selling dream. My dream is about living better.  What’s yours?

 

 

Lunch

The last two days have been a tad unusual, and totally joyful.  Lots of driving to accomplish this joy, and I like that, too.

On these days, I met girlfriends for lunch.

Before leaving, I chose my outfit carefully, applied by longest lasting lip stain and looked for any jewelry that would pay homage to our past.

Yep, I drove 60 miles on one day and 80 miles the next… one way. To have lunch. It’s not really about lunch. It’s about the girlfriends. The laughs, the reminiscing, the fun and laughter at each others expense.  Each “lunch” lasted 2 to 4 hours. Can you imagine if we all took long lunches everyday?  Again, it’s not about the food. It’s about the girlfriends.

I am reminded how I used to love to be with them on a regular basis.  I know them all from different places and different circumstances. We have lots of things in common. All of have a  firm belief in God and feel free identifying that belief by name-unapologetically.

We all love music, either listening, making it or moving to it.  We all love food… it appears we love it a lot!  We all like wine, mostly red.  And, we all love to talk at the same time, sometimes lovingly across each other.  Fun!

Girlfriend picture
Photo by: Vonecia Carswell, it’s the girlfriends that make the drive worth the effort.

Photo by Vonecia Carswell on Unsplash  (thanks!)

I get to spend time driving to and from these events because I live further from Dallas. It’s a quiet time of a sort. Time to think about the coming meet up and the past days together. The future, the questions and their opinions I need.  Drive time is also talk to God time…for everyone’s travels, their needs and my guidance.

The trip home is best. Letting it sink in and taking time to savor the laughs, the concerns, the prayer requests, the grins and the plans for the next time.

I love having girlfriends. It’s fun to share and touching moments inspire a trust that only girlfriends can claim.  Who has time to eat?  It’s about the relationships. It’s about the love.

I can’t wait for the next one. Let me think… who is 60 miles away?   I need a decent drive. Chica, I’m headed your way!

Time for a New Project

We are officially remodeling.

Last summer, we worked diligently on the yard. I hired my girlfriends to come “help”.

For me, that meant I get to take baby steps into this new world.

1. I don’t have to dig.

2. I don’t have to plant.

3. I will water.

4. I will shop for plants and other fun stuff.

5. I will still be organizing the world around me. (control freak).

6. I will pay money to NOT dig and plant.

Ha! I enjoy sitting outdoors looking at “our” hard work. When I drive up the driveway, I am pleased and proud that “we” did all that hot work!

Fast forward 4 months. Here we are in January, starting a new project. No girlfriends. Just us.  You can pray for us, if you are so inclined.

So step one was to get Ronnie to commit to the project.

Wow! I can’t tell you how many objections I had to overcome.  I know that objections are just requests for more information, so I tried to use my best marketing techniques to answer his questions and sell him on the idea.

It must have worked, because three months after I began the campaign, he showed up for the appointment with our new friend Gail at Lowe’s.   She’s a magician, let me tell you!  We know we are over our head when you talk about construction.

The new project:

The front bathroom. The one our visitors see.  Our home is around 30 years old, and it needed to be redone.  We didn’t want to spend a lot, just enough to update it for selling purposes, in case we decide to downsize.

We decided to use a GC (General Contractor) to install a simple walk in shower and hardware and replace the vanity and counter top.  We were pleased that Gail came by first to take a peek and take some general measurements. Then, she brought the GC by and took even more measurements.

We spent a lot of time talking about what we thought it should look like when it’s done, the colors, textures and any changes we might consider.  I really felt like they listened well, and didn’t try to sell us on anything extravagant. The budget was always at the top of mind.

I’ve always loved the furniture vanities popular in some custom homes, so it was decided that I would be in charge of acquiring that piece of furniture and finishing it to match.

Gail found the most beautiful granite top, called Chaldonea, so the race is on!

I searched all the online garage sales and used a couple of apps to locate the perfect piece.  A beautiful maple Basset Buffet.

vanity buffet
This was a great purchase at $100.00. It will be perfect for the vanity.

Today, I find we are starting in 6 days! We were so excited, it’s like finding out you won a prize!   I ran to my favorite “paint” store and quickly got directions from Melanie at Sisters Reclaimed, in our cute little downtown .  I picked up a few supplies and off we went!

Step one:   WASH the buffet.  Really, that’s what she said.  With Dawn.    That was too easy.

Step two:  Ronnie will repair the one drawer that has a loose groove.   GLUE.

Step three:  Let it dry.   I got this!

Step four : Paint.  We are using Annie Sloan Graphite… recommended by Melanie.  I added three coats of paint, then finished it with a clear wax.  I have to say, I almost choked when I saw the price because I haven’t had time to be familiar with the cost of paint lately, but it is so worth the cost. The paint is smooth, pretty and the coverage was thorough.   The brush recommended for the wax was awesome.  I will treasure it always for future projects.

After three weeks, it appears very durable and I love it!

And BAM! The magic of the internet.

It only took a few days, a couple of guys running in and out of the house and some banging and clanging (which drove Ronnie crazy).  I must say, my favorite thing is the buffet and the space we gained.

chalk painted buffet, now vanity
Finished, well almost. Just a couple small pieces to add to each side to camo the plumbing.

I apologize for the lighting of this picture, but I wanted you to see, because there are still a couple of slight problems with which to deal.

  1. Hardware.  The old hardware is quaint and I’m debating about adding some sleek new replacements- in bronze.
  2. The water connectors to the next room.   My first thought is to build little “doors” on each side, and finish them to match the buffet-turned-vanity.  Another option may be to place inserts that are painted to match the wall, giving the vanity more attention.
  3. I’m still looking for some farmhouse type of container for my airbrush system.
  4. I think I’d love a small flower arrangement in the corner (or a lamp).

I’m curious about your thoughts.

Further, we chose a simple walk in shower insert and opted out of having a shower door because I like (love) my shower curtain, and I don’t like cleaning shower doors and tracks. I replaced the stainless curtain rod with one that matched the shower, and we purchased bronzed fixtures throughout.  Ronnie spent a couple hours patching the shower curtain rod holes and touching up the wall and trim paint.  We had to rehang the towel and toilet paper holders.  I stole the mirror from the mud room bath because it was just asking to be moved to a new home.

When the tub/shower combo was removed, the contractor discovered some work not properly completed during the original construction.  After a day of correction and new concrete work, the shower was installed with lots of banging and noise.

Note to self: remove everything from the wall behind the new shower before they start installation!

In all, we are happy with the process. We learned a lot and are still trying to make some decisions regarding the few unexpected items.

We gained 3 inches of floor space… which means my flooring doesn’t fit, so that’s another project, and of course, what to do about the view of the plumbing.

It’s bright, and replacing the tub with a walk-in makes the room look so much larger.  The insert cleans easily and the counter top is beautiful.  The green is still my favorite.

When I was a kid, my mom and dad would always suggest we “live with it awhile” before making decisions on change.  We are at that stage now.  We are living with it.  Happily.

This project definitely fits with our goals of keeping our projects about living better!

The Magic of Adulthood

Something happens when you are a young parent.  Every baby seems a bit brighter than the last, more talented than the neighbors child and more calm than the kid at the day care.  Oh, and those eyes! How adorable and did you know her poop smells sweet?

I remember one evening after work, sitting in my mother in law’s den after dinner talking about all the important lessons I wanted to teach my newborn.  Music, (classical, of course) books (Chaucer, thank you) and museums (art!).  I went on and on about what was available in our large city and how important it was for my baby to know all of them.  She said (probably in an effort to get me to stop talking), “I’m sure you’ll give your baby a wonderful life and then, you’ll have to enjoy the magic of adulthood”.   I didn’t understand.

Every child has challenges and rewards… even the golden and seemingly perfect require special attention that keeps a mom busy from daylight to dark.

Teens stretch the boundaries, practicing what we taught them as babies, to see if it will get them to adulthood at a quicker pace.  Letting them (and encouraging them) to reach a little further with each experience may be a little tough, but necessary.

How else will they learn to properly react and to make those secondary decisions? Tethers like rules, curfews, dress codes, speed limits, allowances… all are about living better in the future.  They are the seatbelt that keeps our children safe in the traffic of life.

Then the true magic happens.  They live to adulthood.  They graduate, make a few decisions, regret a few choices and reboot to survive nicely… without you.  Making that adjustment is easier for some parents (and children) than others.  It can be a sad time or a glorious freeing time.

Some however, must be stuck in the middle for a bit.  Being stuck in the middle can be an obvious bother to the new adult and the parent… that’s where I was for a long time. Stuck in the middle. Between their childhood and their adulthood. Between guiding and nurturing and helping them move on! Eventually, they move and finding your place becomes a little more difficult.

Stuck in the middle is like being forced to live the life of a wall flower. With emotions swelling up when you (think you know) know the answer, they won’t listen and both are afraid to take that step out – for fear of offending someone or being outdated and just flat wrong, or being ridiculed for a belief.  After spending years as the teacher, all of a sudden they can think for themselves and you wonder… “who told them they could do that”?  It’s humorous when you think of it.

Just recently, I discovered the magic of adulthood means someone else can plan the menu for a get together, take a dare and live through it, purchase clothes for the grandkids and be the helping hands this world needs. These magical adults can have their own opinions, disagree with mine, change their spiritual direction and move away!  They can move into a house, mop their own floor, fix their own car, shop for food and stay away for months, if they like.  They’ve learned the magic of adulthood and are living it.

So what does this magic mean for me?  freestocks-org-547542-unsplash.jpg

Photo by freestocks.org on Unsplash

The magic of adulthood allows me to move forward, pretend they aren’t sneering at my suggestions or political views, and enjoy their children and their futures from the side.  The magic of adulthood is not just for the children, it’s for all adults.  Music, art, museums without the diaper bag, road trips, laundry for two instead of for five is a snap, and trying new dances or walking paths can be an adventure. Enjoying the passion of entrepreneurial fun for profit, practicing music again, sharing free time as a local volunteer may be rewarding for some.

It’s looking pretty bright out there.

So, here’s to the magic. Here’s to the babies, now grown and gone from my lap. Here’s to the freedom to have beer at breakfast or champagne with lunch.  Here’s to time… to walk, to visit, to read and write.  To play dominoes and cards, to create beautiful gardens and clean guest rooms.  More music, art and museums, too!

The magic of adulthood awaits us, one and all and it’s definitely living better!

I Opted Out!

Sometimes the best thing you can do is Opt out.

It was a hard lesson to learn.  I read something that said “What can you quit, in order to do more”?… WOW!

So, I quit worrying about the numbers.

I quit trying to keep up with peers.

I quit trying to fit everything into my day, week, month.

I quit subscriptions that weren’t paying off… like my company’s lead program.

That was yesterday.

It took all day to opt out of the unneccessary. 

But today, I took time to join my husband and our good friends for lunch. I left my phone in the car. We rattled the whole hour and a half, without alcohol, without business.  We enjoyed each other.   My husband and I ran errands together and drove over to the lake to check out the water.

Then, we took a nap! Each to their own recliner!  How different life is when you just take care of what you love.

Now, I don’t have to read all the social media to keep up with everything and the newest trends.  I changed my social media email to Weekly updates!  I’m thinking I’ll read one update a day and get on with life.

I won’t be worrying about updating all those dang leads. If those people really were interested, I wouldn’t need to be constantly contacting them.  They would want to be my acquaintence, my business partner. They would want what I have.

I switched back to my journal agenda, and I’ll just use the electronic agenda to set alarms.

anete-lusina-382329-unsplash.jpg

Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash   (thank you)

I’ll write notes and letters, because they mean more.

I removed my contact list from the living room. Put the product brochures in the car – not within reach at all times.

I’ll tell people who are interested in my products, about my opportunity.  I can find my own team members… they’ll match me and my business.  We will fit, because we will already have our relationship established.

I’ll support my team when they need it, not when I think they should have it… or because the company “recommends” it.

All this, because someone suggested I could quit trying to be so, so bossy and be more accomodating to myself, my family AND my team.

So, how would you choose what to give up?

I took a look at my day. Social media was a real time suck. Somehow I fell into that trap of keeping up with everyone. Not friends, but business peers. Not neighbors, but people I don’t even know.     This is a def streamlining challenge, but I will.

I love recruiting.  With purchased leads, I had a specific time frame to make contact, develop and close the enrollment.  Like a machine.  – Gone!

When I naturally, spontaneously recruit, there are no deadlines. It’s about them and their needs. It’s about whether or not my opportunity offer can fulfill their needs. If it will not, then why should we waste our time.

Better to be friends for a lifetime than business partners for a year.  Better to earn trust and security in our relationship than a $500.00 bonus.  I think I’ll spend more time building relationships.

Subscriptions are now all cancelled.  I wasn’t reading any of them regularly,  So now we’ll see where I can  put that extra 76.00 per month.

Worrying about numbers?  I’ll have to practice to streamline this.  It’s an old habit that needs breaking. Instead of trying to achieve more than I need, I’ll try to not NEED it, but enjoy the surprise!

So, now it’s about doing for others and building relationships.

As my load becomes lighter, my goal will be to meet 5-10 people each week.  I’ll intentionally find time everyday to meet someone new.   I’ll make a ton of new friends… some will / will not be business partners… and that’s perfect.

kelsey-knight-449204-unsplash
Photo by Kelsey Knight on Unsplash

Opting Out may be the best idea ever! It’s definitely about living better!

This I believe:

When we do the right thing, for the right person, we receive the right rewards. 

Follow the Routine

feet
Skin care is all about the routine

I’ve spent a good amount of years working in the cosmetic industry as a consultant, representative, employee and customer.  (this post includes affiliate links) The routine is always the same. The products may differ, but the routine is what’s important.

 

Photo by Frank Vex on Unsplash

Science teaches us that the skin responds to our efforts, environments and consistency.

When we drink plenty of fluids, exercise, protect it… we live better.

Here’s the basic facial skin care routine, my two cents are listed in red.

  1. Cleanse twice daily.   Use a cleanser (not soap) that meets your skin’s needs. Moisture in everything… plus oatmeal or lavender if your skin is easily irritated. Exfoliation “beads” (if you work outdoors or are in a dirty environment) – there are cleansers for every skin type! Be sure to PAT dry… don’t rub your sweet skin!
  2. Exfoliate.  When you exfoliate a couple of times each week, you open up your skin to the benefits of moisture and any other treatment you provide.  Without removing the dead cells, the treatments and rich moisture applied will just sit on top… wasted.  There are all types of exfoliants. Every company has their top seller and the price ranges are unbelievable. Shop wisely. Here are my two favorite exfoliate products:  Anew product line has several and it just depends on your preference.  I really like the Clinical Resurfacing Expert Smoothing Fluid.  It’s a product to gently exfoliate and retexturize at the same time!  And, I love the Bamboo Polish Facial Exfoliant from Luminess, as a daily gentle scrub. It smells like banana’s! One tip: don’t use dipilitories or products containing alcohol immediately after exfoliation unless you want to enjoy an uncomfortable stinging sensation and possible redness afterward. 
  3. MOISTURIZE, girl!  After showers, while your pores are warm and cozy and OPEN, take advantage of  opportunity to give your all-over skin a break! Even better, if you can add it IN THE SHOWER!   Then don’t forget to cool your body down before leaving the shower. 
  4. SUNSCREEN EVERYDAYWithout doubt, we know that the sun can damage our skin in a very short period of time! Fifteen minutes and WHAM! got ya!  Everyday, whether it’s in the Day Cream or the Sunscreen Lotion, there must be SPF15 or more! Personally, a daily SPF15 and foundation which contains SPF are part of my routine. 
  5. DOUBLE CHECK.  While you are adding that excellent moisture, notice if there are changes in your skin appearance or texture. If there are…treat them and if needed, go to the Doc! 
  6. TREAT.  If we are lucky and determined, we live longer.  We may choose to, as my friend said, “look great for my age”.  I agree with her that looking too young is unrealistic and stressful. Looking healthy and not older, is a much better option.  Exfoliation regularly, applying sunscreen every single day and using retinol laced products help us to achieve our best look.  MOISTURE is most important, but applying it to clean, new skin is required.  Choose treatments wisely, from eye creams to dark circle removers and skin tightening products… all require the above 4 steps before benefits can be noticed. 

 

That’s the routine. Simple and straight-forward. Do it and benefit. Skip it and try to make up time later.  Like I said… skin has some self-healing properties.  It can rejuvenate with your attention to the details.  I encourage you to make it part of your effort to live better!