5 Resolutions You Should Keep – Even If You Don’t Keep Any Others

Every single year, people make resolutions. And every single year those resolutions fail for too many. Instead of making resolutions, I want to suggest a few positive habits to add to your life. You can still call them New Years Resolutions – or you can call them your Intentions for 2016. Whatever sentence feels better to you.

1. Give Yourself Permission To Walk Away

2. Be Kind To Everone

3. Invest In Yourself

 

4. Forgive Yourself

of your body (4)

 

I am wishing you all a wonderful and blessed 2016!

Claudia

The above post is a part of  the following blog hops:

No Rules Weekend Blog Party

Amaze Me Monday

Inspire Me Wednesday

 

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Colds, Binge Watching And Tea

Colds,Binge Watching And Tea

 

Disclaimer: The following post contains links to my own art, and affiliate links, which pay for my art supplies and design programs – opinions are my own. 
Glad you called first before coming over for coffee, because I really do not want to give you the cold. I can send you some cookies if you like, maybe some thumbprint cookies? Those are my current obsession.

I am truly not used to colder weather anymore, after spending years in Florida, and while I hate taking time off, I know that sometimes it is better to step back, instead of producing mediocre designs. Okay, some of the stuff I made today was pretty awful, so I decided to binge watch stuff instead. The designs you  see here today were made last week, so they are actually ready for public consumption.

No, I do not simply watched Netflix or Amazon, and ingest a few seasons of the newest thriller, or mystery (I cannot stomach most comedies out there), even though I was tempted, I thought I could, at least, watch something worthwhile. Hey, who says having a cold is an excuse to not learn something. As long as it does not require physical movement, and I have a hot cup of tea next to me, it is the next best thing to working.

 

Creative Live: 

If you have not checked out Creative Live and their live stream that features anything an artist’s heart can desire, then you have been missing out. You can watch the above-mentioned life stream, but also pick out some of the online lessons you have missed – may it be about photography or content marketing – by purchasing one of the episodes. I try to catch as many shows live as I can – but because of my schedule that is not always possible, so I am happy that they have that purchase option. Check out this wonderful creation by Chase Charvis

 

Inside Quest 

You might know about Questthose bars that taste yummy but are really, truly good for you – but did you know that one of the owners of Quest has this amazing show that features the most successful and creative people on the planet? He interviews everyone from whom we can learn from – starting at Tim Ferriss, and Ryan Holiday. You should really check out this motivational tips and tricks. And eat one of his bars while you are at it. They truly are yummy!

 

Vyrt 

Yup, that is one strange name for a streaming service, but they are truly unique and worth checking out, especially if you are into music. The creation of Jared Leto – yes, that Oscar-winning creative genius, Joker Madman Method Actor and Rockstar – with which he has managed to create a platform for interesting content from vegan cooking tips by Brendan Brazier (Thrive), to their shows, and behind the scene material to other artists and musicians like Linkin Park, Boy Epic and more. Totally binge-worthy.

 

What are your favorite streaming platforms, or youtube channels that you find completely binge-worthy? Which ones do you think I should check out?

 

Thanks for stopping by!

 

Claudia

 

The above post is a part of the following blog hops:

Weekend Coffee Share

Be Inspired # 190

 

 

Gratitude And Tea

 

It is really cold out there! Perfect time to sit indoors, with a hot cup of tea, a couple of cookies and in front of the computer, contemplating.

I am always contemplating on what-to-do-next. While this habit leads me to be goal oriented, it also has the downfall of creating anxiety, especially when not everything goes they way it was planned, or when the list becomes so large that it is overwhelming.

So taking my time to stop, make myself a cup tea, and focus on gratitude is not only a good idea but a necessity. Exactly that concept of mindfulness and the fact that I need to be mindful in order to function with clarity changed the direction of the book I am working on. Which brings me to the first thing, I am grateful for – the progress I am making with my tea book.

Working title “Happy Tea”, this book demanded to take on a different direction this week, completely unexpected. I thought I would write a book featuring tea traditions, rituals and recipes, but the Universe had something else in mind. Instead, I will focus on the mindfulness of tea, the connection of this beverage within meditation, gratitude and positive living. It seemed like this aspect of tea would serve you better. There are many wonderful books out there, who focus upon the technical aspects of the subject, so I can focus on this direction.

Another thing I am grateful for is the holiday season is almost over.  Yes, celebrations are nice, but they also mean extra work, so I am looking forward to having more time to write.

I am grateful that my daughter gets to see Star Wars with her boyfriend tonight. I am not a fan, but they are, so I am happy for them. I am sure they will have a great time.

I am also grateful for the decorations I have been seeing in the neighbourhood.While people do not seem to decorate as much here as in Tampa, the few who have did a great job. Almost made me want to join in. Then I looked at my to-do list and decided to just enjoy everyone else’s decor instead.

What are grateful for this week?

How do you deal with the holiday stress?

Blessings!

Claudia

This blog post is a part of the following blog hops:

Celebrate The Small Things

Reasons To Be Cheerful

Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday Link Up

 

 

Grabbing Your Muse By The Throat

Staring At The Blank Page

 

I began this day, knowing that I wanted to write a blog post. Not like I do not have anything else to write, in fact, I really need to spend a few hours working on the many facets of writing this tea book, which is beginning to take more and more shape, but still I wanted to connect with you.

And then I stared at the blank space in front of me, that white piece of nothing that is waiting to be filled, waiting to embrace something meaningful.

Nothing.

There was nothing, no idea, that resonated, no thought that needed to be expressed, no clever point to be made. Heck, I did not even design anything over the last few days, so there is not much to talk about on that level as well.

Nothing.

How often do we encounter these moments, where we are approaching the blank space, trying to fill the canvas with either words or colors, and there is nothing there? What we do in these times, makes all of the difference. We artists have now a choice: To back away and wait until inspiration strikes, to revel in the despair of not being able to create or to grab our muse by the throat and drag it closer to ourselves, making her work for us.

We artists have a choice- To back away and wait until inspiration strikes, to revel in the despair of not being able to create or to grab our muse by the throat and drag it closer to ourselves, making her work for us.

The difference between an amateur artist and a professional is, that professionals will do the latter.

If you are waiting for the muse to strike or the perfect time to express your art, you are doing it wrong. All of us, every single writer, and every artist has a moment (or more) where inspiration does not flow as much as it does when we are in the zone. Those who work anyway, who believe that the act of working creates inspiration will produce, finish projects, and eventually – if they stick with their subjects and are willing to learn – achieve whatever goal they have put before them. There is no time wasted, no sitting idle, no wallowing in the anxiety of the blank page. There is action – deliberate process of creation, with or without a plan, that matters less, but still – there is action.

Only the act of writing or the act of creating will bring forth more creativity – the act of waiting for the muse to speak to you, does not.

So grab her by the throat, and get to work.

Click here for some books to inspire you to create.

Blessings

Claudia

This post is a part of the following blog hops:

Be Inspired 

Amaze Me Monday

 

Best of Zazzle – Gifts For Her

 

Christmas is almost here, and while I put a big dent on my shopping list, I am like many of my friends, not completely finished picking out something special for everyone. And because I prefer to give something as unique as the people whom I share the holiday season with, I stop by my fellow designers on Zazzle for that different, out of the ordinary gift.

Here are my 5 favorites for the women on my list:

 

 

Classic and elegant.
I am biased – I have a Welsh-Gorgi/Beagle rescue, so I can not resist anything that resembles her.
Now I love eye-catching designs, and this case is hard to ignore. What a stylish way to dress up and protect your iPhone!
A beautiful and unique personalized platter, that fits with any decor. I love the simple elegance of this piece.
No favorite reading corner is complete without a puff to rest my upon.
Aren’t these beautiful? I hope this made your shopping a little easier. Remember that the above products are designed by independent artists, who truly appreciate your support.

Have a wonderful week!

Claudia

(Disclaimer: The above links to my fellow Zazzle designers are affiliate links. Any profit made from sales does not take away from the designers profits and helps me to continue to promote their work and offer advice for their creative endeavours. )

 

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Planning, Goals, Progress and Coffee

If you were coming over for coffee, I would greet you with a hug and some chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven. It has been a while since I posted on this blog, but I have been pretty busy. The fact that my computer has a nasty virus did not help either.

December is usually my busiest month, not only do both of my children have birthdays, and of course, there are the holidays, but it is the time where business picks up, and also the time to plan for the next year.

Which is exactly what I am working on this weekend: Goal and Action Plan for 2016.

I don’t believe in New Years resolutions. Of course, they can be beneficial, but why wait until a particular time to make a change? Yet I do plan the year, but not in a resolution kind of way.

There are overall goals to work out – that has to be the first step, never forgetting that there has to be a why, a reason behind each goal, otherwise, I am fully aware that I will not follow through on it.

Willpower can carry you far, reasons will carry you further.

Then there are the monthly goals – smaller steps that together build the picture of a successful year. Those are flexible, meaning, I can adjust those goals throughout the year to fit the progress I am actually making. The trick is to set these goals high, but not so high that they are not attainable. Otherwise,  the frustration of not reaching them will keep me from going further.

Next are tangible action steps. I ask myself, what do I need to learn to make this happen? How much time am I willing to invest into this goal? What do I need to do to see progress? Those answers will be based on the overall goal and the monthly  goals.

This leaves me with a framework for the entire year.

What I am questioning this year is about how public I should make these goals, and when. I have seen many bloggers and marketing experts, who put all of their goals and their achievements out there – that is wonderful, as it motivates me. But being an artist first, a creative, who might not see monetary results in such a profound way every month – while other months soar – I am not sure, I am going to do that yet. What do you think? How public do you make your goals?

If you were here with me, I would tell you that another year end practice I enjoy and intend to employ this year:

Expressing my thanks to those who inspired me.

Now, some of these people – some of whom are famous, some are very successful might never respond to my email, Facebook message or tweet, but some might (hey, I have had Brendan Brazer, the creator of Vega, and the author of Thrive, acknowledge my tweet the other day, where I was praising his mission, products and words), but that is not the point. It does not matter how successful you are, I am sure that it can not be a bad thing to hear something positive from someone who learned from you, or was inspired by you. Spreading a little kindness through expressing gratitude at the end of the year – and throughout the year benefits the receiver as much as the giver. It simply feels good all around.

So these are the questions I have for you this week:

Do you plan your year? Do you make resolutions? If you do, what steps do you take to allow yourself a better chance of success? And, how public do you make these goals and plans?

I am looking forward to hearing from you!

I hope you enjoyed the cookies. I enjoyed your company as always

Much love

Claudia

 

 

This blog post is a part of the following blog hops

Celebrate The Small Things

Weekend Coffee Share

Thankful Thursdays

Thankful Thursdays 2

No Rules Weekend

 

Disclaimer: The above blog post contains affiliate links.

 

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