I’ve always loved quotes. One of the best things about them is that you can read one and it can instantly turn your attention around to a new, and likely more positive, direction. Quotes also have the ability to lift you up when you’re going through tough times or encourage you when you need a boost. That’s why I thought it might be SMART to list a number of quotes that are most helpful to me as a way to jumpstart our New Year. To make it even easier to read through them—I’ve classified them according to the SMART categories. When you’re done, I’d love to hear which one’s you liked best in the comments below. Even better, if you have one that you’d like to add to the list, please share it with all of us as well. Ready for a lift? Here are the quotes: [Read more…]
Since writing my post last week about curing my addiction to “more,” I’ve continued on by dwelling on the idea of success. Gradually I’ve come to the conclusion that success is another one of those things that many of us waste much of our lives pursuing, without being fully aware of what it really means to us. Like Lily Tomlin says, “The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat.” With that in mind, maybe it’s time to stop striving for success at anything—anything that is—except for being the best “me” each of us can be. [Read more…]
At the end of every year I have a habit of going back and reviewing things that worked well in my life in the last 365 days. I think it’s useful to explore the actions, mindsets and understandings that have enhanced my well-being and happiness—and recognize those that didn’t, so they can be modified And because a big part of living SMART 365 is staying conscious, awake and aware—this practice might prove valuable for all of us. I’ll start by sharing a few ideas that increased the quality of my life in 2012. [Read more…]
Happy SMART Day Everyone!
The recent World Happiness Report reminded me that it is always a good idea to define your terms—even with a common word like “happiness.” That’s because while we all tend to use the word on a regular basis, what I think happiness means, what you think happiness means, and what everyone experiences as happiness are very likely three different things. And if we are going to pursue it as the U.S. Declaration of Independence suggests, then it is critical that we know what we are talking about. [Read more…]
Happy SMART Day Everyone!
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking this year about the best and SMARTest way to celebrate the holiday season. While I’m no expert, Thom and I have tried several different ways throughout the years—everything from the traditional family in “It’s A Wonderful Life” to a vacation in Hawaii ala “Christmas with the Kranks.” While some experiences were more meaningful than others, I’m pretty certain I’ve discovered what it’s NOT. And even though I’m okay with buying myself something I want or need when necessary, I think it’s best to NOT end up making our Christmas or any holiday “present” about “self-gifting.” I mean really!?! Before that idea gains any more acceptable traction, let’s remember that the true meaning of a gift is something that we give—not something we receive. [Read more…]
One of the best-known quotes about happiness comes from President Abraham Lincoln. He said, “A person is about as happy as he makes up his mind to be.” That’s right, Lincoln, who was said to be the most respected and loved of any American President basically implied that my happiness, and your happiness, is up to us. But why don’t more of us accept that as true?
With the new school year fast approaching, I think it is useful to recognize that people generally have one of two different mindsets when it comes to learning. Some people think you “just have what you were born with” as far as smarts or intelligence goes, while others live their lives with the belief that you can always learn more and become more with effort. Which are you? Sort of like a brain “operating system,” believing and behaving with either a growth mindset or a fixed mindset will go a long way towards determining your success and happiness in this lifetime. The good news is, if you haven’t been getting the results you crave, you can always change your mindset and go from there.
Drop a light bulb on the floor and it shatters. Drop an apple and it bruises. Drop a hard rubber ball and it bounces back—good as new. What about you? Every single one of us experiences a variety of events every day. Some experiences are smooth and pleasant, some merely okay, and others downright tough. While most of us can sail easily through the good times—whether we shatter, bruise or bounce during the tough times are as individual as we are. We all know a few people who are amazing at bounding right back. Others—not so great. The good news is that with the desire, every one of us can improve our bounce-ability quotient. [Read more…]
Just over six months ago Thom and I added a new family member to our household—a puppy we named Kloe. To be sure, a puppy ads havoc, lots more work and a great deal of responsibility to anyone who cares for them. However, the increased value and joy Kloe brings to our lives more than compensates for any inconvenience. Not only does Kloe make us laugh on a daily basis, there is plenty of proof that she is also good for our health.
“Research has shown that people with a greater sense of vitality don’t just have more energy for things they want to do, they are also more resilient to physical illnesses. One of the pathways to health may be to spend more time in natural settings,” Richard Ryan.
As some of our friends and family know, Thom and I have been renting a house for a month every summer up in Idyllwild for around 17 years. Idyllwild is a very small mountain town, (less than 2,000 permanent residents) about an hour from our home in the desert. Back in 1993 we did it for the first time because, quite frankly, we couldn’t afford any other type of vacation. It seemed like a good way to escape the desert heat and was a great bargain as well. Little did we know back then that the experience would be so rewarding, that we would still be doing it 17 years later. Now, not only do we consider it still an amazing vacation value, we are living examples of the restorative power of spending time in nature. [Read more…]