An Act of Kindness on National Be An Angel Day

National Be an Angel Day, Acts of Kindness

Image Credit: Sabine Sauermaul

Although today we recognize National Be An Angel Day, why not show a random act of kindness to someone frequently? It costs you absolutely nothing to do a good deed or simply to be kind to someone. The beautiful part about being an angel is that you don’t expect anything in return. Oh my gosh, how amazing you feel after you’ve done something kind for someone who never expected it. Go ahead…make someone’s day!

#NationalBeAnAngelDay

Staying on Track

Fitbit Alta, activity trackers, wireless-enabled wearable technology devices

Image Source: Amazon.com

After going in for my annual checkup a few years ago, it only took the sudden shock of hearing how much I weighed to say “Whoaaaaaaa Nellie!” I believe that news alone made my blood pressure go up, which the nurse took afterward mind you. Now while my weight was not out of control, it was more than I have ever weighed in my life. For several years I used a pedometer to get at least 10,000 steps in a day to stay active, a little bit anyway. Last year, one of my best friends, who is an exercise buff wanted me to use the same type of activity tracker that she used so that we could be each other’s accountability partner. 

Exercising, activity trackers, wireless-enabled wearable technology devices

Image Credit: axelle b

Ahhhhh….so I lost the pedometer and started using my Fitbit Alta activity tracker. I didn’t need anything ultra sophisticated, but this Fitbit Alta helps me track so much stuff like my daily steps, the number of miles walked, calories burned, active minutes performed and how many hours I slept! Yep, you won’t believe how much vital information it provided that only got me hyped up even more.

activity trackers, wireless-enabled wearable technology devices, Fitbit Alta

Image Source: Amazon.com

Did you know that walking 10,000 steps per day can help to reduce the rate of type 2 diabetes by 50% and can reduce stroke rates by 70%? The older we get sometimes makes staying focused, active and proactive about our health and wellness a little challenging. All too often, poor eating habits, the lack of consistent exercising along with a little-added stress on top of that can affect our motivation.

Fitbit Alta, Exercising, cycling, activity trackers, wireless-enabled wearable technology devices

Image Credit: Jean Beaufort

Improve your health, energy, attitude, and productivity by walking, running, swimming, cycling, yoga, or Zumba. Don’t allow inactivity, excessive weight gain, and lifestyle traps make you sink into the evils of health related issues. Take charge and do something. Don’t just sit there and allow time to rob you of your good health and wellness.

Improve your health, energy, attitude and productivity, Fitbit Alta

Image Credit: imore.com

Fitbit is my new hassle free way of turning health and wellness into an entertaining and accountable mission. If you don’t have an activity tracker or pedometer, at least make a commitment to do some type of physical activity each day for at least for ten minutes and drink plenty of water, especially right after you get up in the morning. You can’t imagine how energized and focused you will feel, just by making a few simple changes in your life, like eating better.

Nature Never Stops Teaching Me Life Lessons

Nature, Banana Trees, EnduranceWhat has nature taught you lately? Last week, I knew I faced a daunting task I was procrastinating about for a few months now. Last fall my husband and I dug up the banana trees planted around our deck, covered the roots and stored all of them in the crawl space under our house for winter.

Well, we replanted two-thirds of them the first week in April this year and after being so pooped and achy from a days worth of replanting, I left the balance of them in the crawl space to trash on another day. Well, needless to say, I kept putting off this chore and finally decided that they had to go before the 4th of July got here. Although I tried to give the trees away, people are not as fascinated by caring for banana trees as I am. So everyone declined the gift.

Banana trees, Nature, EnduranceOn June 27, I put on my gardening gloves, fought the creepy crawlers and colony of spiders (Ewwww) that slowly scattered when I opened the crawl space door and I stood there looking in a state of shock. Yep, I was amazed that in the darkness, trees began to sprout perpendicularly and busted through the plastic bags that the root of the tree was housed in. Totally freaked me out. I cut the host stalks off and discarded them, but kept the new sprouts as you can see from the photos.

I suppose these youngins taught me a lesson about growing in the shadows of death valley. They showed me what it is like to keep ‘going’ and ‘growing’ where you are, even when darkness and hopelessness surround you. When the host stalk appeared to die, their roots of endurance continued to thrive, perhaps at a slower pace, but nonetheless, their perseverance under duress made me examine myself under similar spiritual conditions.

Sometimes when situations look hopeless, when you suffer oppression from injustice and abuse, or when grief strikes you so violently that all you can do is moan, as easy as it may feel to just give up, wither and die, that is the very time you never give up. That’s a tough thing to do, but yet a very courageous decision to make.

I am reminded of two things from this experience with these baby banana trees: the poem, written by Jane Eggleston, “It’s in the Valleys I Grow” and a quote someone gave me when my father passed away, “Bloom Where God Plants You.” The older we get, everyone will go through an “in the valley of the shadows of death” experience; some more extreme than others, but this is a test of resilience and individual fortitude that we claim victory in spite of.

Define Your Graduation

graduation, graduating class, commencement

Oh, the exuberant feeling of graduation! We think about excited faces, trying to remain poised and proud, trekking down aisles in an orderly fashion to take their assigned seats, while having reached this summit of learning with a sigh of relief. Whether you have graduated from kindergarten, elementary school, or middle school, or maybe you are now graduating from high school, trade school, undergrad, graduate, specialized degrees or doctoral programs, graduation day signifies a level of great achievement. Who can possibly argue with that?

I remember the day of my high school, Bachelor’s and Master’s degree graduations. The feeling was a proud moment of triumph in my life each time. Once you come down from that incredible high, you realize that the buck does not end there, because reality sets in quicker than you can imagine.

While we primarily associate commencement exercises with graduating from school or college, our education does not end with a diploma, certificate of achievement or degree. Nah! Continued learning is a lifetime full of interesting lessons, the good and unpleasant that tests literally every fiber of our being.

I remember wanting to grow up so badly, to be an independent adult, yet the thought never occurred to me that graduating to the adult level came with even greater lessons, responsibilities, and challenges. I’m sure you too can share some “You ain’t gonna believe this” occurrences that threw you off balance many a day, more than you probably care to admit. Yet, we share those graduation moments where we overcame some challenging hurdles that now shape our character and our life.

Catastrophic events may challenge our faith, hope and trust, but when you overcome those adversarial moments you graduate to an even greater degree of development in some aspect of your life. Such adversities test our very core, but just like the exams we took in school, we can pass them by learning from our mistakes.

So how do you define your graduation? What and where were you graduating from? Life is interesting, but it is also a lifelong classroom of teachable moments.

Our Hidden Greatness

Potential, Growing, Survival

Potential: /pəˈten(t)SHəl/ Latent qualities or abilities that may be developed and lead to future success or usefulness.

Years ago, I read the book “Understanding Your Potential: Discovering the Hidden You” written by Dr. Myles Munroe. The objective of Dr. Munroe’s message makes you discover the untapped wealth of your potential ability, and rise above your past experiences to unearth hidden treasures within.

Whether or not you’ve read this book or are familiar with any of Dr. Munroe’s work, this book started out with the following explosive epiphany: Where is the wealthiest spot on this planet? In the oil fields of Kuwait, Iraq or Saudi Arabia, or perhaps in the gold and diamond mines in South Africa? Nah! The richest deposits on our planet tragically lie in our cemeteries and graveyards. They contain potential that remained potential.

The wealth of dreams has been dashed into the poverty of discouragement. –Dr. Myles Munroe

If I coulda, woulda, shoulda! So this got me to thinking about whether or not I am truly exercising my right to live my best life, not the wealthiest life, but my best. What spiritual gifts and physical talents has God blessed me with to use and enrich the lives of those who need encouragement to help them pass it on and to encourage others? How will we emerge from the ashes of hopelessness into the inferno of hope?

How do we successfully plant the seeds of potential that grow into trees of plenty? How do we leave our footprints in the rich sands of history and not buried in the dirt of a cemetery? Focus on what you have and then build from there. Start this minute if you haven’t begun already. We can’t allow disappointments to disarm our determination. If we allow adversity and discouragement to win, then we’ve already lost the fight before we even got started.