Age gracefully……

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As a woman, I feel this extreme pressure to constantly feel like I need to look younger.  Tone up, if you will.  Make sure that I am in “perfect” condition for everyone.  Sure we all might feel like we are at our best when we look our best, but where do we draw our line?

I am young.  I am happy with my body as far as I recognize I have my problem spots and I know what I need to do to get them back in shape.  It is MY responsibility to get my body to the shape that makes me feel the best…not someone else’s expectations of “you should be as skinny as a rail, 100 lbs, your stomach’s getting pudgy work it out, you should wear make-up to the gym because heaven forbid you actually run into someone you know there, oh and your hair…um yes…grow it longer because short hair it just isn’t what women should do…it makes you look like a mom.”  I am tired of the pressure frankly.

Why is it so hard for people to face their music?  Why are we dragging our feet? Why do we feel like we have to look younger all the time?  Why is it so hard to find a wrinkle and be proud of it?  Well maybe it is a sign of people’s lack of appreciation for their age.  Do you fully embrace where you are at in the present moment?  Do you say, thank you for making me 25 years old at this very moment in time?  Or maybe your 10 or 70 years old in some cases!  No regrets, right?

To me, it is a lack of personal gratitude and appreciation for life’s journey when we force ourselves to “look” younger.  We start off as children and we “wish we were older” always….then we hit a point where we wish we could go back to that innocence.  We sit there and wish our lives away.  Seems rather silly doesn’t it?

I want to offer a little bit of “natural” solutions to looking and feeling younger (not found in a bottle of anti-aging cream or diet pills).  In no particular order:

1.  Surround yourself with people who care about you.  They support you.  They genuinely love you.

2.  Smile more.  If you smile for no good reason, I guarantee you will find a reason.  Plus, smiles brighten other’s days.  It might actually change someone’s bad day into good!

3.  Never actually act your age.  My good ol’ friend Herb taught me that.  Surround yourself by young people and you will forever feel connected and youthful.

4. Make sure that you wash your face, brush your hair and don’t smell like body odor.  One of the best ways to feel good about yourself is just simply keep good hygiene.

5. Try to make a point of doing one random act of kindness for someone daily.  When you give your effort and time to others it really pays back.  That little act could mean the world to someone.

6. Keep in touch with your friends.  Keep in touch with those who are distant old friends more so.  Just call to see how they are doing.  It makes a world of difference in your appreciation of that person in your life as well as talking about your past times keeps you youthful.

7. Talk to people of all ages.  There is someone always that has either been in your shoes, is walking your walk right now, or will be in the future.  Learn what they did, are doing, or what they might do to make the situation a little better.

8. Keep things in perspective always.  Is this really a big deal?  Is this really something that I need to worry about?

9.  Take care of our body, mind, and soul and seek balance always.  If you need to work out more to keep yourself in balance, then do what YOU have to do…keep your mental and physical health in check always.  Remember no one is perfect, so find what works for you!

10.  Pray daily and keep your God and creator at the center of your focus.  He will point you in new and amazing (sometimes amusing…) directions which will keep your mind off the aging process.  🙂  This part is the liberating part!

11. Love others genuinely with all your heart.  Keep your pride down and really work on looking past one another’s flaws.  It makes life so much better!!

I would like to end with this article I came across that I think will shed some light upon how to embrace growing older…http://www.psychologies.co.uk/news/how-to-embrace-growing-older/.

How are you going to embrace where you are at and in this very present moment?  How are you going to embrace this aging process that people consistently fighting today?

❤ The CatMan

Restore faith in yourself…

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–One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.– Lucille Ball  (LOVE HER BY THE WAY….)

I lOVE Lucy….no not the show, although I watched it frequently as a child.  Lucille Ball is one of my favorite all time actresses.  I think because I can relate with her uncanny timing, laughter, and “well poop” situations.  It never failed that she could always get herself in trouble.  But, the witty actress had a great humor and could get even the deepest ‘Negative Nancy’s’  to laugh.  Humor was a great way this star kept things light.  It never seemed to fail that she was going to find herself in a predicament and then you would  hear a  “LLLUUUUUUUUCCCCCCYYYYYYY” (of course) in a Cuban accent.   She never gave up on herself and never gave up faith to keep being a great actress.  She kept a great outlook along the way…

One very hard thing to understand is why things happen the way they do.  Why is it that good people have bad things happen?  Well that is just life.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig4jbcU9db0 .  So in order to “cope with life” we must keep things in their respective places with perspective.  Let’s not make anything a bigger deal than what it is and if we have a problem with someone or something let’s strive to get past it.  Holding on to those negative feelings or ideas will never ever do anything for you.

Today as we go through our life and coping, if our perspective is out of whack, then let’s shift our focus inward and see what is REALLY going on!  Normally when my perspective is off kilter, it is nothing the other person or thing has done at this point.  It is nine times out of ten my lack of understanding that is what causes it.  The initial bad thing happened.  OK it’s done and let it lie there.  No need to continue dragging the event out past the initial.  So then that needs to be filed away, but keep in mind if a certain person is always causing you grief it might behoove you to reexamine this relationship with them in regards to your own personal and mental health.

Next, when you feel life is shaking you from your very core, remember your values and believes.  If you have a solid foundation then stand up and stand firm!  Stand strong.  Nothing can harm you at this point in the game.  Finally, restore faith in yourself and like Lucille Ball said, “…it doesn’t pay to get discouraged”.  Stay positive and you will go far…

Step 1:  Keep everything in perspective.

Step 2: When something goes wrong, find a solution, don’t dwell on it and move on as quick as possible…

Step 3:  Stand firm in your values and believes.

Step 4:  Have faith in yourself and don’t get discouraged.

What can you do today to keep yourself in check?  Stay positive?

How to stay positive….

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This morning, I had a great outlook on things and I have made some real progress.  I really came in with the idea in my head….”What am I going to do to promote sales?”  Successful in my attempt…things are really going swell.  I could use some sunshine right about now to stay positive though….what do you all think?

I found this article that I wanted to share with you all.  I think it is so important not to get yourself down when things are down or you are seemingly twiddling your thumbs.  http://www.selfgrowth.com/articles/nolen1.html.

Now, because it is raining cats and dogs our there (by the way, anyone want to adopt any of them???  Take them off our hands PLEASE!) I made the choice to sleep an extra 15 minutes and not do my hair.  It was going to get destroyed anyways so why worry about it?

Lastly, music is always a good pump up.  So in hopes to make you have a more POSITIVE day listen to this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELNh23yRiJc.

🙂  Have a “Super” Day!

❤ CatMan

Behind every man….

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Behind every great man is a woman rolling her eyes.
Jim Carrey

 

There is great truth behind this comment.  Think about it….how many “great ideas” come before one is achieved?  (eye roll)  The answer is too many.  Just do it.  Stop over thinking it and just do it already!  How hard can it be?  ha.  OH very hard apparently.

When we over think we are allowing our brain to over ride our natural ability to listen.  We process until we process something to death.  Now that is not very productive AT ALL.  So why do we do it?  Good question!  Because we are control freaks.  So, today is about listening to the whole thing not just one aspect but ALL aspects.

This week, I managed to throw my back out picking up a box.  Yes it was as silly as it sounds.

I went to the chiropractor and a massage therapist.  I feel 95% better.  After last night, I have more mobility than I did and I feel like she really did a great job!  Crunch, crunch, crunch…I was a regular hot mess.  When I got home and relaxed–I felt so much better.  I was drinking lots of water.  I am a little sore, but it was well worth it.  Icing has been helping.

While I was in the massage, she told me that she was trying to intuitively listen to where my body was pulling.  So can I do that too?  Sure I can!  That isn’t hard…I mean sometimes it can be tricky…but anyone can listen.  I decided that I was really going to make a conscious effort to listen better.  Shut the pride and brain down and listen to what my heart and body were saying.  Seek the listening first.  Then adjust accordingly to seek balance.  That is going to be my goal.

Maybe if I had just listened to my body say “that’s too heavy CatMan”…I wouldn’t be in such pain.  The parts of the body are so intricate and everything hinges off each other.  This being said, your heart, physical body, spirit, conscious mind, intellect, emotions, soul and over all energy have some “words to say about you”.  If you want to feel your best?  All you have to do is listen!  When something is out of whack, it might scream at you until you do something about it.  Simply stated, if I had listened to my body saying “no way!” I might not be in this mess.  I would have saved approximately $167 and the pain of looking like a sissy.  Nothing hurts the ego more than that.

Through all of this Nomad has been a peach.  Very empathetic as he has back issues and knows it is a pain in the rear literally.  These painful times are a good reminder to balance.  Where there is an action, there is an equal cause or reaction…or something like that.

Well speaking of Nomad, he is doing some really great things.  He is looking into going back to school.  This is a very positive long time coming decision.  I am really proud of him.  It took him a decent amount of time to discern this whole thing and figure out what his best option was going to be and I think he is on the right track.  Maybe not exactly to the program he needs, but he is getting there!  I have been trying to encourage him, motivate him, and etc…but you know people move in their own time.  (eye roll)

Oh to be yourself…Go walk naked!

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“To be nobody but yourself in a world that’s doing its best to make you somebody else, is to fight the hardest battle you are ever going to fight. Never stop fighting.”  –E.E. Cummings

So I am really struggling right now blog friends.  I am finally starting to understand how much really loving people…not like your average gushy mushy love, but really pouring forward all emotions and heart into others is very hard.  This means practicing understanding, patience, kindness, trust, and knowing eventually this period of love will pay off, Right?  Practicing and encompassing all gifts of virtue and yet, strange enough that is not enough for a person to come to grips with how much love you are giving to them!  Love is so foreign people who reside on the surface.  They try to walk 100% away from this “love” thing because it is a vulnerable foreign feeling found only at the very core of our beings and when we were children.  As adults, this is a feeling that is a rarity and seemingly so distant in our current live style.

Our hearts can become hard.  Our attitude callused.  And then when we find someone to which is willing to pour forth love and give you anything/everything you need for success–we are confused, tormented, and fearful as to WHY?  Why me?  Why do you have this invested in me?  What did I ever do to you?  Well the simple answer is you didn’t have to do anything…it is just because I love you!

As hard as this feeling of love is in demonstrating it to others…I think it can at times be hard to be yourself in such a world that can be cold and cruel.  One should be themselves and have the strength and courage to do so to the best of their ability.  Just simply being yourself is hard.  Being yourself doesn’t mean being misguided like these “little rebels” can be…but, being yourself means stripping the fluff off and developing what’s left.  That is the real you.

What a confusing, sometimes bitter cold world we live in today.  Despite the negative, we must strive to ALWAYS find hope.  There is still a lot of that in this world.  Although you might have to dig a little deeper to find it.  It will be well worth the scavenger hunt when the treasure: HOPE is found.

 

Last night, I was asked if I had ever been “skinny” dipping.  (gasp!)  Well not in the way he was thinking, but I have started walking naked more often.

Go on a walk today.  Naked.  I dare ya!

“Oh…but I can’t!”  (you respond)

“Oh…but you can and you will probably love it!” says the CatMan!

(The crowd GASPS…….)

Strip yourself down to your core and walk around naked.  You might actually like that version of you.  That’s the hope I am talking about!  You might feel smut free then and you may actually feel better about letting yourself out!  Get to know the real you and embrace!  Once that naked beautiful person comes out of the hard shell they were in, you could just discard that shell (as you won’t need it anymore).  Don’t be afraid!  The real you is not so bad.

 

We do it to Pistachio nuts all the time.  They are considered elite nuts and when shelled they are beautiful!   Precious green goodness.   Just remind yourself that when you are second guessing “going naked”.  🙂

That is all,

❤ The CatMan

“Misfits”

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“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes…the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules…You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things…they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”   –Steve Jobs (1955-2011)

What a great reminder that it is more than OK to be different!  Have courage and faith to stand firm in who you are.  Find out what your made of so you can capitalize on it!  OWN IT.  There is only one of you.  You have a great and awesome purpose here so don’t waste another moment in your pity party.  Go figure out what you have to offer people and this world and shoot for the moon!  Look where it got Steve Jobs…RIP.

❤ CatMan

 

Shift in Focus. Adjust Perception. Change in heart.

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‎”When one focuses too much on the negative, all they see is road blocks. When one focuses on the positive, that is where one finds hope…” (me)

 

It is so easy to allow ourselves to be drug down by the muck surrounding us or listen to others that are only trying to bring us down.  Unfortunately, it is harder to be a leader than it is just to allow us to be sucked in to the abyss.  It is so easy to listen to the negative bringing us down….then we crash…If we ever expect to make it past tomorrow’s muck we must be willing to change our focus and stop listening to the outside noise.  Focus on what is good.  Focus on what we have going for us and focus on hope.  Hope is a key component to this whole situation.

One way I like to ensure that I don’t become a dirty muck pie is to visually wipe myself clean (literally take my hands and fling off the negative) and affirm myself often.  I constantly need to remind myself exactly what my purpose is.  Without affirmation, we can lose focus.  Something simple would be “I am a vessel to which God uses for His Good Works.”  I also like to personally make take my focus deep inside of me and allow God to transform from the inside out.  Think about it, this takes YOU out of it and allows Him to work His magic.  “Send my mind, body and soul into light and love” is another great affirmation.

Human’s are naturally imperfect.  We will always have flaws.   By taking us out of the mix, we are able to recognize we are a tiny part of this bigger picture.  It is amazing to understand what your purpose is and to fall in line with the circle of life!  Each little purpose that we all have is apart of a bigger entity.  We might be small, but the purpose of the small is equal of importance to the bigger picture’s results!  Without the little parts, the picture will never be fully complete!

Next key component…adjust your perception and do not make anything bigger than what it is.  You own that girl….or guy?!   This is a true test of inner peace when you can keep everything in check.  You spill coffee and it goes down the front of your shirt…take a deep breath and embrace it.  We have all been there and you know what?  Starbucks has a shirt with a “printed coffee stain” down the front of it!  You can get that for the bargain of $80 at your local department store.  Someone cancels on you, again.  OK.  Not a big deal!  That is life–so what are you going to do now?  Maybe go on a walk, or find a little cafe’ close and just observe!  Life is good remember.  It’s not the end of the world.

Now we are focused.  Everything is in check and balanced, so now what?  Now we have to make the most important change!  Change in our heart will not just happen overnight.  It takes time to get ourselves back to a state that is more enjoyable.  Let me explain….http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eefP4bG2EkI&feature=related

When we were children, we had very little to worry about and things seemed relatively easy.  Something happens to our heart as we grow up to be adults where we allow the muck of the world to steal our innocence.  Now it seems we are always stressed, always on the go, and always rushing without really taking time to smell the roses.  This is definitely a problem.  When this situation gets to this point, we are really missing out on living.  Those little things as a child we so dearly loved are now buried under adult junk.  UH OH…now what?  A change of heart is needed to keep in balance.

Start simple.  “Live simply so that others might simply live.” (Mother Teresa) Learn to notice everyone on the street, yes even the weird ones.  The people who are the most interesting are the one’s (usually) last noticed.  Dare you to talk to one!  (Oh did your mother tell you not to talk to strangers?  Well it’s fine now, you’re an adult!)  Learn to ask people questions when you don’t understand.  Learn how to give your time and knowledge to helping others succeed.  Hey they might thank you later!   Learn to get back to that child like innocence and you might just find yourself living an even more incredible life.  Take the ownership back and start living life with a purpose!

❤  CatMan  🙂

Tonight’s Observation: Caramel Corn is Good

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I love this fall weather not only for the change and beauty of the weather, but for the food and snacks associated with this time of year.  Take for instance, we have two major holidays to which you dress up, play the role of someone else and receive candy….and the other holiday encourages you to indulge in home cooked meal and have parties to bring people together.  Seriously, the only time I will encourage and promote being anyone but your normal self.  It is good to bust out of our boxes and get the creative juices a flowing!

Boots, sweaters, costumes, football, family and get-togethers!  Transitional changes in the weather, in yourself is you are open to it, and probably being OK with adding a few pounds to the hips from all the goodies….oh they tempt me so badly!  Why must I have a sweet tooth!?  WHHHHYYYYY?

Transitional seasons can make someone feel so alive.  Out with the old and in with the new.  Clean out your house and make room for new growth and development figuratively and literally speaking.  A time to examine your heart and the house you keep.  What a great opportunity for growth and preparation for a second chance?!  Personally, I am trying to focus on listening more.  I need to balance and find quiet moments whether I can find them for five or ten minutes vs. longer extended periods of time is irrelevant.  I just need to find them.

Tonight I found the Caramel Corn just staring at me.  It was just sitting on the table.

I was minding my own business, yet that tricky little something else  got me…..the inner dialog between me and Mr. CC went something like this:

CC: “How YOU doin’?” (eye brow raising)

CatMan: “Um…seriously?  Since when does Caramel Corn talk?”

CC: “Look how incredibly good I look!  ummmhmmm….I am so yummy you just want to take a handful of me and you know….*wink*”  (yes a wink…)

CatMan: “Yeah I am trying to get into shape and you REAAAALLY aren’t helping my cause…so good bye!”

CC: “What?  Wait, wait, wait….just take the lid off and look me in the eyes….I think we are a match and I want you to handle my goods…if you know what I mean…just one whiff…”

 

By this point, I was very inquisitive as to why the Mr. Caramel corn was “talking dirty” to me at the kitchen table…it was very puzzling.  Not to mention disturbing!  BUT maybe he was just taking advantage of my brief moment of weakness.  The CatMan is ONLY human you know…OK so here is how the rest of this went down….

 

CC: “Come on!  I might be a little sticky…BUT I will do you well…I taste so good…just open the lid and smell my sweetness…OH I will never disappoint you CatMan, if you allow me to show you.”

CatMan: “Maybe just a little whiff will be enough…I am not having any Caramel this late at night…”

(opening the lid I was totally sucked in and it was all over from there!!!) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rqDkDhkJKQ

 

CC: “Yes, yes….go on…touch me!”

CatMan: “Nope not doing it!  Sorry…..well maybe just one but that’s it….(like I said this is all internal…I am NOT that crazy…)…I can afford just one piece and I will be good….ugh…I am so weak…stupid Caramel Corn…” (I reached my hand in and pulled out a ball of goodness, we made eye contact and I just got weak in the knees…)

CC: “Try a taste.  Just a bite is all…”

CatMan: (staring this little ball down)  ‘Just one’ “ohhhh…you are so good Caramel Corn…” as I chomp myself to a 400 calorie mistake…(I put that piece in my mouth and how satisfying!)

CC: “See how do I taste?  Good, huh?  I told you I would never disappoint you…you kind of like me don’t you?”

What was happening on the inside of my mouth as I just couldn’t resist anymore. Literally the inside of my mouth was doing this:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFz2WkVAk38

Then it was ALL OVER….Mr. Caramel Corn won….and my only response?

CatMan: “Mr. Caramel Corn, you were right about one thing…you are VERY good….Bastard….”

ALL I could do is shake my head in discussed…well there is alway tomorrow right?

So what’s this evening’s observation?  Caramel Corn is good.  sigh…just not very good for my hips!  Darn it!