Release the Negative and Keep the Positive – There’s an App for That!

Why I Love Let it Go

Let it Go App
I’m really excited to tell you about an app today that I think know you’ll enjoy a lot. What’s more, this app has the potential to bring more focus, peace, and balance to your life. There’s only one requirement… you have to use it!

Let It Go is an iPhone and Android application (“app”) that basically lets you “get out the bad” so that “only the good remains.”  You can write down anything that is bothering you, releasing the negative in the process.

This may be anything…

  • the speech you’re worried about making
  • bills, bills, bills
  • school
  • work-related stress
  • cranky kids
  • cranky spouse
  • the human dragon who snapped at you
  • weigh loss plateau
  • did I mention bills?

You get the idea - any of life’s unexpected or expected unpleasantries can get the heave ho before they stick around long enough to do your mood or psyche any damage. When negative thoughts and worries are allowed to linger, before you know it, they’ve made YOU the cranky spouse and/or the snapping dragon.

The releasing process in Let It Go is “completely random” for each negative thought and takes between 1 and 72 hours to fully make its exit.

Are you beginning to see why I’m so excited to tell you about this particular self growth and improvement app?  Writing down and releasing your negative thoughts, worries, and experiences is liberating!  Getting rid of negativity improves your mood, your day, and your life.

Here’s something else I love about this app: If more people use it to release their negative thoughts and emotions – maybe they’ll stop airing them out across social media!  I think people have the mistaken belief that sharing their negative thoughts and worries with everyone is beneficial, but it isn’t.  Personally, I think it becomes kind of a crutch and a habit.  I think a lot of people log onto a social media website and automatically think, “OK, what am I going to gripe about today? How can I elicit all the pitying and back pats I can stand today? ”

Oddly enough, I believe some people even air out their dirty laundry on these websites as a means of “getting at” another individual.

And people wonder why there’s so much stress flying around.

Releasing your worries and negative thoughts PRIVATELY and ANONYMOUSLY is healthier for you as well as everyone else.  It allows you to THEN go to the social media websites of your choosing a happier, more positive, productive, and funner to be around person.

The person you were meant to be before negativity tripped you up.  Someone who others will think, “I can’t wait to see what she/he has to say today!” instead of “Oh, no. What kind of drama do they have going on now?”

The community feed in the Let It Go allows users the opportunity to “opt in” and share ANONYMOUSLY what’s on their mind.  You can vent without anyone knowing who you’re ranting about or even who’s behind the rant.

The community feed is an optional way to further “let it all out” and gives those who like to vent a chance to do so. But, as I pointed out above, the beautiful thing is it allows you to do so without spraying negativity all over your friends and acquaintances.

You can, then, leave your app FREE of negativity and drama and go face everyone in your life (online and off) with the stress-free, more peaceful and happy face you REALLY want them to see.

That’s what they deserve and, more importantly, what you deserve.

I hope you’ll check out the free Let It Go app right away.

Let it Go App

To keep the body in good health is a duty, for otherwise we shall not be able to trim the lamp of wisdom, and keep our mind strong and clear. Water surrounds the lotus flower, but does not wet its petals. – Buddha

How to Use Your Subconscious Mind to Help You Achieve Goals

3 Simple Steps to Making Your Subconsciousness Work for You

Quote About Achieving Goals with Our Subconscious Mind
The quote above, by Earl Nightingale, is a beautiful reminder of the power of our subconscious mind. Whether we fully realize it or not, our subconsciousness is one of our most powerful weapons – sometimes all we really need to do is get out of its way.

If we were to take the quote above and drain every drop of self improvement goodness from it (something we should do with all inspirational quotes), we’d realize a few things:

  1. First of all, we should make certain that we feel as strongly about our goals as we think we do.  Have you ever found yourself struggling with a particular goal or dream only to realize it isn’t even your dream? That, in fact, you’re actually trying to live up to someone else’s goal for your life? There’s a reason that doesn’t work – YOU have to feel strongly and passionately about the goal or dream. It has to be YOUR dream. YOUR vision. YOUR passion. If it’s someone else’s dream, let them work on it while you work on your own.
  2. How do you make sure the idea is “buried deep” in your subconscious mind? At the risk of grossly oversimplifying… you put it there!  Think about the goal you want to achieve and think about it often. You aren’t working some sort of mumbo jumbo – trying to bring the fulfillment to you, you are taking yourself to the fulfillment. Proactive beats inactive or reactive every single time when you’re going after goals. Goals and dreams aren’t on wheels, you can’t coax them to come to you, you have to lace up your own skates and roll to them. Frequently thinking about these objects of desire puts the wheels in motion. This particular step is why things like “vision boards” (picture collages of images that represent goals and dreams) are so popular. It’s also why so many experts recommend “picturing” yourself where you WANT to be. Both of these exercises are ways of burying the idea deep in your subconscious.
  3. When you’ve put your subconscious mind on the path to your goals, let it works its magic. You’ll find yourself with fresh ideas for making your way down this particular path.

Your subconsciousness is your own personal superhero and he/she is just waiting for you to call them to action.

The more intensely we feel about an idea or a goal the more assuredly the idea, buried deep in our subconscious, will direct us along the path to its fulfillment. – Earl Nightingale

Why The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman Should be the Next Book You Buy (Review)

Ten Reasons Why You're Going to Love this Book

The VB6 Cookbook Collage

“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.” – Ann Wigmore

If you’re looking for fun, simple ways to eat healthier, here’s a book that’ll prove to be a dream come true for you. The VB6 Cookbook: More than 350 Recipes for Healthy Vegan Meals All Day and Delicious Flexitarian Dinners at Night doesn’t just provide you with delicious, easy to make recipes that won’t break the bank, it makes eating healthier fun and.. yes… tastier.

Okay. Before you accuse me of getting my Self Help Blog mixed up with my Food Blog (Get Cooking) let me assure you I’m posting a cookbook review on Self Help Daily for an excellent reason. You see, this isn’t just a cookbook. This book is actually part of a life improving program, The VB6 plan by Mark Bittman.  Anything that can improve someone’s health and life is a perfect fit for a self help and self improvement blog.

Have you ever heard the term “flexitarian?” Flexitarian refers to a relationship with food that isn’t 100 percent strictly vegan.  It’s a way of eating that is flexible, meaning more people will actually STICK with it. Mark Bittman’s VB6 program is simplistically beautiful: You simply eat vegan before 6:00 pm.  The program has helped a great number of people improve their health, lose weight, and feel better than they’d felt in years.

See? I told you this book was a perfect fit for a Self Improvement blog!

Below are the Top 10 Reasons you shouldn’t wait another day before you buy The VB6 Cookbook:

  1. Gorgeous Book. Whenever I review a book on Self Help Daily or Get Cooking, I always pay close attention to my first impression of the book. Is it well-made (meaning it’ll stand up to years of use and enjoyment)? Is it attractive? Does it look like the publishers were serious about impressing the readers or was their heart only halfway into it? The VB6 Cookbook is a real looker. The beautiful, hardback, 250+ page book is everything, visually, I’d want a book to be.
  2. Mark Bittman. Period. To say I cook a lot is a ridiculous understatement. I’m in my kitchen more often than a Priest is in church.  I’m seldom happier than I am when I’m cooking meals for my family and I LOVE trying out new recipes as much as I LOVE using and re-using favorite recipes.  Mark Bittman is the author of many of my favorite recipes. When I want to try out a new recipe for something in particular, I’ll turn to Mark Bittman’s recipes before I turn to a lot of household name celebrity chefs.  His recipes never fail, it’s as simple as that.
  3. Healthy Eating = Healthy Living. Not long ago, I spent a few days in the waiting room of a cardiology surgical center.  I was with a family member who was WAY too young to find themselves in a hospital gown in such a place. Sad thing was, as I looked around, I saw A LOT of people who were WAY too young to be where they were. Heart disease isn’t just frightening, it’s striking more and more people and it’s striking them at younger ages.  Plain and simple, it’s the American diet and something has got to be done about it.  We’re creating our own plague of Biblical proportions and if people don’t wake up and start eating healthier, they’ll find themselves in hospitals, cardiology departments, and worse.
  4. KISS.  No, not the rock group.  KISS as in Keep It Simple, Stupid.  This book – or more to the point, this program – makes it painless and incredibly simple to start eating healthier. If you don’t know why that’s important, you must have skipped number 3.
  5. Delicious Food! Even if, somehow, you didn’t associate these recipes with healthier eating, you’d still love the delicious flavors.
  6. Fun Food.  Whether you’re one of those people who live to cook (like me) or you’d rather do just about anything BUT cook, you’ll love The VB6 Cookbook.  The recipes are fun, creative, and mix things up a bit in the kitchen.  You’ll find recipes you’ll be so excited about you’ll want to try them the very day you get the book.  I actually made my first recipe (Chipotle “Mayo”) from The VB6 Cookbook within 2 hours of getting the book in the mail. That’s a new record, even for me.
  7. Your Family. While this one may somewhat tie in with number 3, it’s important enough to get it’s very own number.  The more healthy meals you’re able to feed your family, the better their health will be. Not only are you giving them wholesome, healthy food at one particular meal, you’re introducing them to a whole new relationship with food. They’ll soon realize that healthier eating is actually more flavorful than unhealthy eating.  When you get right down to it, most unhealthy food tastes pretty much the same.  Fried. Fatty. Salty.  The VB6 way of eating will introduce your loved ones to a world of wonderful flavors that’ll make them fall in love with healthier eating.  Here’s a little secret about eating healthy – you can keep this between you and me, the kids and spouses don’t have to know: Healthy eating becomes addictive.  When you get rid of the bad stuff, you’ll find yourself craving the good stuff.  Where you once said, “I need a big fat cheeseburger with a farmer’s wealth of bacon,” you’ll find yourself thinking, “I have to have a Cherry Vanilla Smoothie and Vegetable Pot Pie or maybe Schezuan Beef and Celery..” (3 of the recipes in the book).  I don’t know why – but it’s my experience that the healthier you eat, the healthier you want to eat. Sadly the same is true about unhealthy eating.
  8. Motivation and Inspiration.  The first pages of the book include Mark Bittman’s “My Story.”  The motivational intro makes you even more committed to eating right. Basically, you jump right in the boat with the author and agree to go on a healthier journey with him.  He’s one of those authors who write in a manner that makes you feel like he’s talking to you, personally.  Reading his books (and even his recipes) feels like you’re having a nice little visit with him.  This type of writing cannot be taught, it’s a gift and when he was gifted, he was gifted generously.
  9. Information and Advice Beyond the Recipes.   After the wonderful Introduction, pages 12 through 45 lay out the VB6 plan beautifully. There are charts, information, meal plans, ideas, suggestions, and more.   There are also personalized tips and ideas with each recipe in the book – including “variations” and “more ideas.”
  10. You’re the Boss of You.  While The VB6 program is best (as in you’ll see the most results) if you follow it as designed, when all’s said and done, You’re the boss of you!  If you want to approach the program strictly and eat Vegan before 6:00 on most, if not all, days – go for it!  If you want to simply add MORE vegetarian meals to your diet, then approach the cookbook in that way.  If you’re simply looking for fresh new healthy recipes to serve your family… the cookbook is still a must have.

 Some of the recipes you’ll love:

  • Chipotle “Mayo” (the first recipe I made from the book – delicious! This “mayo” is a great dip for vegetables and is excellent as a condiment for burgers or protein patties)
  • Scrambled Sweet and Hot Peppers
  • Pico De Gallo
  • Nut Butters
  • Everyday Salad Bowl
  • Blueberry Spoon Bread
  • Schezuan Beef and Celery
  • Cherry Vanilla Smoothie
  • Avocado Banana Smoothie
  • Morning Milkshake
  • Pork Chop Pan Roast
  • Raspberry Sorbet on a Stick
  • Green Toast
  • Fruit Candy
  • Frozen Tropical Truffles
  • Red Paella with Scallops
  • Beans, Shrimp, and Fennel
  • Southwestern Bean Dip with Peppers (black beans, cloves,cilantro…)
  • Red Soup
  • Creamy Tomato Soup
  • Big Batch Cooked Beans
  • Rice Pudding with Slow-Roasted Fruit
  • MANY MANY MANY more.

From the Back Cover:

Mark Bittman’s breakthrough diet plan, first introduced in the #1 New York Times bestselling VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 to Lose Weight and Restore Your Health . . . for Good (click through for the hard back version of this bestseller  - a Kindle edition is also available), has been hailed as “compelling” (Publisher’s Weekly), “commonsense” (Washington Post), “sustainable” (TheKitchn.com), and a “small painless change” that can have a “huge impact” (Salon.com). Now he expands on his appealing, simple, reasonable approach to flexitarian cooking with a companion cookbook, featuring hundreds of delicious new ways to make VB6 your permanent style of eating. It’s never been easier to eat vegan before 6:00 – and deliciously all of the time.

I hope you’ll click through and take a closer look at The VB6 Cookbook: More than 350 Recipes for Healthy Vegan Meals All Day and Delicious Flexitarian Dinners at Night - I’m really excited about this particular approach to eating and I’m having a ball with the wonderful recipes.

I know you’ll love The VB6 Cookbook just as much as I do.

Note: I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review. The opinions are entirely my own.

The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman

Urban Halo: Chic Headband That’s Perfect for Summer

My Urban Halo

Urban Halo - Midnight Lace

This one’s for the girls (sorry guys).  I’ve fallen hard for a new headband that I thought you might like to check out.  Urban Halos are silky soft headbands that keep your hair out of your face when your face is the last place you want it to be!

Whether you’re gardening, walking, jogging, cooking (!), or simply enjoying a day on the lake, Urban Halos save the day and look uncommonly chic while doing so.

These super soft, comfortable, and great looking headbands are available in a lot of colors and styles, including one that’s pretty hot right now: Pink Camo.  Each headband is just $15, which is actually a great price given the fact that they’re exceptionally well made.  My personal favorite (and the one I was sent to check out) is called “Midnight Lace.” The colors go with anything and everything and… I dunno… I think it brings a touch of glamour to even mundane moments like frying eggs!

Cooking is actually my favorite time to use headbands. It keeps my hair back out of the way – which, let’s face it, when you’re cooking, is a very good thing.

I also love the one (pictured below) called “Street Cred.”  Really sharp.

I have to say, when I was contacted about checking these headbands out, I didn’t get my hopes up, because my luck with headbands is kind of crummy.  Normally they either give me a headache or slide down so often they drive me nuts – but Urban Halos are different from the rest.  No headaches. No sliding.  No worries.

See Urban Halo for more information. Be sure to click through the indiscreet numbers at the bottom of each page to see the MANY colors and styles.  You might want to grab several – a few for yourself and maybe even some to put back for Christmas gifts.

Urban Halo: Street Cred

 

Hard Times Require Furious Dancing

Hard Times Require Furious Dancing

Beautiful excerpt from a beautiful book.

“I know my duty to life, to stop wars… especially those I cause within myself.” – Alice Walker, Hard Times Require Furious Dancing: New Poems (A Palm of Her Hand Project)

About the Author: Alice Walker is known around the world for her fiction, poetry, essays, and human rights activism. She was honored with the 2010 Lennon Ono Grant for Peace and has been inducted into the California Hall of Fame. Visit the author’s website, Alice Walker’s Garden, to learn more about her beautiful writing and poetry.

July is Lost Pet Prevention Month!

Cat Pause
July 11, 2014

Bo
If you have pets in your family, you know valuable and (and insanely loved) they are.  If you’ve ever  spent hours looking for one, you realize it possibly even more than most.  See the picture of the little beauty above? His name was Bo and when he was a kitten, my husband, daughters, and I spent hours in the rain looking for him.  We drove, we called, we walked, we prayed, and a few of us had tears.

Hours. In the pouring rain.

He was one of the kittens our outside cat, Carly’s first litter and, unlike the other kittens, he was fond of getting up into cars for warmth, so anytime we went anyplace, we had to do a “tiny head count.”  We’d knock on the hood, and call out for him – he’d always come out if he was up in the car.

Apparently, on this particularly cold  night, he had zero interest in coming out. Someone must have assumed he wasn’t in there and drove to the store.

With Bo.  Unfortunately, they came back without him.

We actually found him about 4 of 5 miles from the house. We went into each store and restaurant in the area, asking if anyone has seen a VERY small white-ish kitten.  Finally when we got to a Taco Bell, one of the workers said one had just been seen.

Sure enough, we found the tiny little guy huddled under a tree next to the restaurant,  shaking from both fear and cold.  I was scared to death that, in his state, he’d run if I approached him too fast (his nerves were obviously stressed out with the rain and traffic – our home’s in a rural area outside of the city, so he’d never seen this many cars, or lights for that matter!).  I walked up (very slowly) to him, talking the softest, sweetest baby-talk imaginable and, thank God, he allowed me to simply pick him up.

When we brought him home, our youngest daughter dried him off, cried over him, and didn’t put him down for about 5 months.  We all began parking out of the driveway, outside of the fenced in yard – and we began a policy of “All cats in sight before even getting into the car.”  From then on, Bo was called “Taco Bo” and he went on to fill our lives with wacky adventures for years.

I hope you never find yourself looking in the rain for a furry member of your family, but here’s  is a link to an article in honor of Lost pet Prevention Month:  10 Things to Do if Your Pet is Lost. It’s great information to file away and hope like heck you never need it.

This way, if you’re ever faced with the drama, you can ensure your friend has the same happy ending Bo did.

Self Help Lesson from a White Cat

Live IN the Moment, Without Looking PAST the Moment

Cat on Pine Mountain , Kentucky

The foolish man seeks happiness in the distance; the wise grows it under his feet.  – James Openheim

 

When you first look at the picture above (and to the right –>), what’s the first thing you see? Your answer is probably the stone on the building, the tree’s trunk in the foreground, or the trees in the background. Or, you may be an artistic sort who first notices the colors of the “canvas” before the individual parts.

Then again, you may be like me – such a bona fide animal lover that the first thing you see is the gorgeous white cat.  Of course, if you didn’t see her right off the bat, that doesn’t make you any less of an animal lover. She does blend in with her surroundings after all.

Story Behind the Picture

I took this  picture a few years ago when we were in the beautiful mountains of Eastern Kentucky. We’d just arrived at Pine Mountain State Resort Park and were taking in the awe-inspiring beauty.  The mountains are always gorgeous, but in Autumn, the scenery just takes your breath away.

I was in the middle of taking a lot of pictures of the mountains and trees decked out in their Autumn best when I had the distinct feeling that I was being watched. I knew it wasn’t my husband because he was busy snapping away with his own camera.

Given the fact that I’d already seen several signs telling guests to keep an eye out for bears, the feeling of being watched was a little bit more unsettling than usual.

I happened to look “closer” than I HAD been looking and that’s when I saw the beautiful little white cat.  Given the fact that I’d been looking so FAR away I hadn’t seen her before.  For an animal lover, like me, her beautiful face trumped everything else.

Then again, I love cats as much as my next breath. I have had at least one (usually 2-4) cats all of my life. I find them to be the most amazing, intelligent, colorful, and joyous little beings God ever created.  When I come across one in public, my reaction would lead you to believe I’d just encountered Bigfoot, himself.  So the fact that I could have missed seeing this little cutie simply by looking too far in the distance left an impression on me.

When we got back home and I sat down to upload my pictures to my computer, this particular picture made me stop and think. It’s a reminder of something we’re all guilty of from time to time – some more so than others: We often get so caught up in looking “off” into the distance that we miss what’s right in front of us.  Whether our eyes are fixed firmly in the future or stubbornly in the past, we’d do well to always remind ourselves to stop and look around in the present.

Who knows what we could be missing?

Because of the effect the picture had on me, when it came time to re-design Self Help Daily, I used this picture as my palette. It reminds me to not only “see” the big picture of life, but to always stop and appreciate the small details – the ones right in front of me.

Ironically, this whole premise goes with my new favorite quote. Not only do I collect quotes, I’m utterly obsessed with them – so I often have a favorite quote “of the moment.” The quote that has been my favorite for some time now is from Thoreau, “Live in the present. Launch yourself on each wave. Find eternity in each moment.” If that isn’t a life-changer, I don’t know what is.

Write it down. Live it out.

Find Eternity in Each Moment

... find eternity in each moment. – Thoreau