Your secret sauce for independence

s.p.u.n.k with Writer Unleashed

Mary E. Knippel, Writer Unleashed

Independence…ability to act freely, self-confidence, spunk, outspoken, or boldness.

Do any of those descriptions ring a bell for you?

No?

Well, it’s time that they did!

 Let freedom ring!

Your day of reckoning doesn’t have to come with a revolution. It can come quietly as you take a stand for yourself today by turning right instead of left on your walk today, choose something more exotic than vanilla or chocolate to celebrate July as National Ice Cream Month, prepare fish instead of hamburger for dinner, wear red (or a flattering version of a festive hue) instead of that customary (read safe) shade of beige, read a whole article, or chapter, instead of watching that sit-com summer rerun on TV.

Where on that face do you see evidence of anyone who had the ability to be outspoken…let alone bold?

That child only wanted to please and for quite a while, that was the story of the woman she grew up to be. However, circumstances forced her to see the consequences of always pleasing others at the expense of her own well-being. 

That little girl could be your daughter, your mother, your aunt, your niece, your cousin, your best friend, your co-worker…it could be YOU! 

Choose you…speak up for yourself!

You don’t have to wait until you have a health crisis to take care of yourself.

Rewrite your story!

You can choose to put yourself on that To Do List…be outspoken and buy that summer novel for yourself, then boldly read it in a bubble bath tonight, show some spunk and schedule a massage before you desperately need it and claim the freedom to take care of yourself.

By the way, taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you’ll stop doing what comes naturally to you…taking care of your loved ones…it only means you have demonstrated your ability to act freely and choose to include yourself among those whom you nurture, love and support. 

Hop over to my Facebook page and let me know what independence looks like for you.

Photo credit:  EAOverland

 

 

 

 

Magic at your fingertips!

 

Magic at your fingertips…sounds absolutely amazing and a bit mysterious doesn’t it As if it were a special way to allow you to conjure your own outcome. Ah, what a beautiful image.

If you have ever wished on a falling star, searched for a four-leaf clover, or wore your favorite t-shirt to play a sport for luck, you have engaged in a bit of magic there.

Magic is defined as the art of producing a desired effect or result through various techniques. 

If you haven’t guessed it yet, the technique I’m talking about is writing.  Specifically, writing in a journal with a “magic wand,” in the form of whatever writing instrument you choose.

Still not convinced you can do magic?

What if I told you…

  • that you can do magic?
  • that you have power at the ends of your fingertips?
  • that you are destined to change lives through your magic?

Would you laugh, or would you lean in and ask me to show you how?

In this digital age, it is all too easy to get closed off and shut down. Closed off from the world and often shut down within ourselves. Caught up in the details of daily life, the temptation is to become oblivious to the big picture that it is possible to be one person and make a difference. 

Yes, I realize that all the details of daily life can consume and overwhelm you and here I am wanting you to add one more thing to do. Now, consider this. What if this journaling thing helped you not only cope with the day to day stress, it could help you accomplish goals, find inner peace and, dare I say this, joy in your lifeSpending as little as five minutes a day could change your life.

At the end of the day, I feel I’ve been given an invitation embrace life lessons as hard-won sweet wisdom through the pages of my journal. Wisdom revealed through the connection between my heart and my fingertips recorded in my journal. – magic!

Call it luck, mind over matter, destiny, synchronicity, angels, or spirit guides…

I want magic in my life…how about you?

Curious? Let’s continue this conversation. Schedule a Complimentary Consultation today!

 

photo credit:  Canva.com

 

 

Whose life are you leading?

Do you look at your life and wonder…what part of this life is mine? because someone accused you of not being who they thought you should be with the words, “I don’t even know who you are anymore!” 

Do you know who you are? Perhaps you’ve embarked on a journey to discover your authentic self just as I have after I was diagnosed with breast cancer…for the second time.

Too often, it is easier to only show the parts of yourself you feel will be accepted and judged appropriate. 

Sound familiar?

 

leapintolifeThis month is about mothering yourself. So reclaim your life and jump back in with power and passion.

Treat yourself with Tender Loving Care and no more being the good girl who wouldn’t hurt anyone’s feelings or disappoint anyone else so you settle for the fuzzy end of the lollipop. Yes, the world needs followers as well as leaders. Why does it always have to be about one person winning and everyone else losing.

It’s not about winning or losing; it’s about respect and awareness. 

It’s not about judgment and who is right…it’s about everyone being heard.

So when is it “appropriate” to speak up about what you want?

Right now!

Let the world know it’s your turn to be heard. As convenient as it would be to have people read your mind and not have to tell them what you want, you’re just going to have to speak up.

Regardless of whether your “office” is on Market Street, Main Street, Wall Street, or behind the wheel of a mini-van barreling down Any Street, this “Voiceless Syndrome,” presents a common dilemma.voiceless

You have to speak up…to reclaim your life.

Reclaiming your life includes a form of self-care you may label radical, but it merits consideration. Think you know what it is? Yes, it’s asking for help…

  • with the paper pile-up that is threatening to overtake your office
  • brainstorming ideas about that next big project or program
  • with the laundry and dinner preparation
  • with childcare and carpool duties
  • with creating consistency and confidence in a world full of challenges and uncertainty

Don’t  look at your life and wonder…what part of it is mine?

It’s your life…claim time for yourself to live a life unleashed. 

Please hop over to my Facebook page and share how you are claiming your life.

 

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

An Internal Audit

taxes (1)Hearing the word audit, my thoughts turn to the April 15 deadline and the number crunching for the Internal Revenue Service. No, the Internal Audit I’m asking you to consider is all about the resources we deplete to the state of exhaustion and have such a difficult time replenishing. Don’t know what I’m talking about?

Do you ever skip breakfast and substitute a giant cup of coffee or tea, along with a bagel or jelly doughnut?

Do you ever grab a candy bar for lunch? Do you ever skip lunch and inhale the contents of your refrigerator standing up when you get home from work?

Do you ever feel as if you could sleep the entire weekend because you are exhausted from the stress of the week?

Now, do you have an image of the “resources” I’m talking about?

Your personal Internal Audit involves a notebook, a pen, and you sitting quietly for 15 minutes to answer the question: How do I build up my resources? Or, what is my plan to nurture myself to avoid depleting my valuable internal resources?

Make a plan right now to decide what you will do when faced with life’s challenges – because we all know that despite our best plans, sometimes we have to go to Plan B or just punt – so figure out what you want to do BEFORE facing those challenges.

  1. Have a quick breakfast option handy for those get-out-the-door-fast days such as a baggie of mixed nuts, or protein shake/bar.
  2. Make your lunch for the next day while you are putting away dinner leftovers, and in the morning all you have to do is grab and go.  
  3. Choose one night a week to go to bed at 9 p.m. Soak in the tub, read a book for pleasure, or catch up on those magazines that have been piling up next to your bed.

Photo credit:  Canva.com

Want to know the secret sauce to independence?

s.p.u.n.k with Writer Unleashed

Mary E. Knippel, Writer Unleashed

Independence…ability to act freely, self-confidence, spunk, outspoken, or boldness.

Do any of those descriptions ring a bell for you?

No?

Well, it’s time that they did!

 Let freedom ring!

Your day of reckoning doesn’t have to come with a revolution. It can come quietly as you take a stand for yourself today by turning right instead of left on your walk today, choose something more exotic than vanilla or chocolate to celebrate July as National Ice Cream Month, prepare fish instead of hamburger for dinner, wear red (or a flattering version of a festive hue) instead of that customary (read safe) shade of beige, read a whole article, or chapter, instead of watching that sit-com summer rerun on TV.

Where on that face do you see evidence of anyone who had the ability to be outspoken…let alone bold?

That child only wanted to please and for quite a while, that was the story for the woman she grew up to be. However, circumstances forced her to see the consequences of always pleasing others at the expense of her own well-being. 

That little girl could be your daughter, your mother, your aunt, your niece, your cousin, your best friend, your co-worker…it could be YOU! 

Choose you…speak up for yourself!

You don’t have to wait until you have a health crisis to take care of yourself.

Rewrite your story!

You can choose to put yourself on that To Do List…be outspoken and buy that summer novel for yourself, then boldly read it in a bubble bath tonight, show some spunk and schedule a massage before you desperately need it and claim the freedom to take care of yourself.

By the way, taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you’ll stop doing what comes naturally to you…taking care of your loved ones…it only means you have demonstrated your ability to act freely and choose to include yourself among those whom you nurture, love and support. 

And being included is a  wonderful thing!

 

 

 

 

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Practicing self-care means…

 

notebook and penPracticing self-care means…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period of time.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt –  practicing self-care means
Or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and/or fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

What makes your heart sing?

free womanMay is Women’s Health Care Month. What are you doing to ensure the best care for the most important woman in your life? Yes, I do mean you! Suppose you embrace the list below as your self-care guidelines.

Must do self-care tips…

1.      Love yourself unconditionally.
2.      Share what makes your heart sing.
3.      Nourish relationships with spirit, family and friends.

  • Bonus tip…do what you need to do to manage stress wisely.

Every woman, yes every woman, must make her own care a priority in order to be there for everyone else in her life. You and I have something in common with Entrepreneur and media mogul Ariana Huffington. The founder of the prestigious Huffington Post found herself reevaluating her life after collapsing from exhaustion and lack of sleep. A classic wake-up call in the form of a personal health crisis.

It happened that way for me with my breast cancer. I jumped back into my life so fast after the first episode that my activities barely slowed down. The second episode three and a half years later shook me to my core. It made me stop and take stock of how I kept saying Yes to everything and not slowing down to enjoy much of anything. It doesn’t have to happen that way for you. You can take action now to promote your best health in body, mind, and spirit.

And I can just hear the protests and debates going on in your head right now…there’s too much to do for me to slow down, who will do it if I don’t, no one can do this to my satisfaction. Arguments which only fuel your escalating stress level and my suggestion is to rewrite the story from a new perspective. Review your to-do list, check off what you enjoy doing, delegate some and delete others.

You can decide to make changes in the way you live your life, including adopting daily practices to keep you on track—and out of doctors’ waiting rooms. To have a more fulfilling life, one that allows breathing spaces to enjoy the richness of the present moment. Give yourself permission to have a massage, sit with a cup of tea with your journal, have a bubble bath, read a book just for fun, enjoy a walk in nature, and take time to just BE!

Hop over to my Facebook page and let me know what makes your heart sing!

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com 

 

 

Congratulations…

daisy fieldIt’s May! The bright colors and and sweet sentiments of Mother’s Day are lingering in the air. And you don’t think any of that applies to you because you haven’t “given birth!” I cherish being a mother to my darling girl. The road to becoming a parent was a long one and I’ll share that story another time. What I want to focus on right now is that there are many kinds of mothering. (Some even refer to self-care as mothering and I think that is wonderful!) As I was watching yet another commercial about honoring Mom on her special day, my heart sank for all those who would not feel honored and appreciated because they are not “mothers” in our traditional sense of motherhood.

Let’s look at this phrase from a different angle.

Have you ever come up with a new way of accomplishing a task that satisfied absolutely everyone involved…from the most senior person down to the newbies?

Have you ever invented a system which shaved time off a process, or saved money in materials?

Have you ever had an idea and ran with it until it blossomed into an article, a book, a piece of art, a physical product or program?

Congratulations, you’ve given birth to a dream!

Now, I hope I’ve given you pause to re-think how you view the concept of “Mother.” You are, of course, going to have your perspective and I’d love to hear from you about your definition, please hop over to my Facebook page.

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

 

 

[Coaxing Creativity Tip] Your Love Bucket List

 

Love Bucket List from the Writer Unleashed

Love Bucket List from the Writer Unleashed

You’ve heard of the Bucket list…well here’s a new twist…a Love Bucket List! 

 List the of ways you can lavish nurturing on yourself. Self-care is self-aware and no matter what your inner critic tries to tell you, it is not selfish to spend quality time with yourself. Think about the proper maintenance of your car. Would you attempt to go on any kind of trip, the grocery store or across the Golden Gate Bridge, if you didn’t know that you had enough gas and the engine was functioning properly because you had the oil changed etc. If you start driving along and continuously ignore the check engine light on your dashboard, you know you are asking for trouble down the road…literally. Maintaining your body/mind/spirit connection is equally as important.

Don’t wait until you have a health crisis to take care of yourself! 

Self-care is being aware of how you are balancing everything in your life. 

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. luxuriate in a bubble bath
  2. take a walk in Nature
  3. buy yourself a bunch of flowers
  4. have tea somewhere new
  5. visit a garden center
  6. explore a craft store
  7. stop and smell the roses
  8. take in a museum and just wander
  9. schedule a field trip to an art supply store
  10. experience texture at a fabric store
  11. give yourself a foot massage
  12. nap in the middle of the day
  13. do some yoga moves
  14. read for pleasure
  15. light a candle and meditate
  16. play with paint, stamps or fun papers
  17. catch a movie on the big screen
  18. work up a sweat exercising
  19. get a new hair cut
  20. write in your journal
  21. invite your inner child to create a dream board
  22. eat chocolate
  23. ride the merry-go-round
  24. give yourself a hug and a pat on the back
  25. listen to inspirational music/books
  26. dance
  27. savor your favorite ice cream treat

Now…go write your own Love Bucket List! And please share your ideas on my Facebook page. I’d love to hear how you nurture YOU!

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Let’s Defy Gravity!

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-climbing-to-success-image12779921

Gravity. It’s what keeps us on earth instead of aimlessly floating in space.

Defy gravity…to stop clinging what’s weighing you down and embracing your dreams instead by reaching for the expansive sky.

Just a minute! I can hear the wheels turning in your head. The good girl in you doesn’t want to defy anyone or anything. It’s human nature to be protective of what makes you feel safe. What if the very thing that appears to be keeping you safe, is really causing you pain? The pain of feeling overlooked and undervalued.

The good girl syndrome is difficult to refute because you may feel it’s part of your DNA. Getting along is a life-long commitment when the alternative is life alone. Sound familiar? That little voice in the back of your head that keeps saying, “don’t disagree, just go along, who do you think you are to have an opinion anyway?”

Yes, there will be those who will try to keep you in your “place.” As the song advises us in Wicked, “…too late to go back to sleep,” when Elphaba sees the Wizard’s true magic exposed. Now that you have woken up to your passion and want to share your message, settling for the safety of the background isn’t enough.

It’s just gonna take a little something Grandma called gumption for you to defy gravity and live your dreams.

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image871073Now, I realize asking you to defy your fears is not realistic. Delaying them is a tactic I’d suggest you try. Break big dreams into small steps to accomplish in manageable chunks. Don’t dive into the deep end of writing your book, for example. Write an outline or set aside a specific period of time to work on a single chapter. Instead of cleaning out an area that has been a dumping ground for years, set the timer for an hour and see how far you get. Start out taking a walk around the neighborhood before you sign up for that marathon.

Gravity in your life could appear as that security you feel when you behave the way others expect you to so that you will be accepted, approved of, and even loved. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Some would argue that is called being dependable and predictable. Good qualities I would agree.

Behaving as though you only exist to be in others solar system instead of making yourself a priority is not a good quality, and not self-care I’d endorse.

Give yourself permission to defy gravity…be free of the weight of:

  • Always living up to the expectations of others and adding to your stress 
  • Not living up to the expectation of others at the risk of your self-esteem
  • Your own disappointment of not being able to express your own thoughts
  • Living someone else’s life instead of your own
  • Grief and sadness because your light is denied and hidden from the world

You matter and your story matters. It’s time to rewrite your story. Time to defy gravity and soar!

Hop over to my Facebook page and let me know how you are defying gravity!

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

An end of summer release…

Allen, Gale and Mary, Fall 1960, from MaryEKnippel.Author

Allen, Gale and Mary, Fall 1960, from MaryEKnippel.Author

Are you excited to attend end-of-summer activities?

Do you have a fall countdown going?

Have you ever had a much-anticipated event go totally wrong…something you’d been looking forward to like a little kid at Christmas…but circumstances beyond your control stepped in with other plans.

Typically, I plan my Minnesota visit for Mother’s birthday  in August and this year is no exception. I expect to be sorting  through old pictures and playing that game of “who is this and what are we doing?” laughing until blue in the face. Or, watching old movies with my favorite aunt and sipping tea, shopping at the mall and catching up with girlfriends – those activities.

I do not, however, want to repeat the two trips to Urgent Care and the four prescriptions episode from a previous visit. Now tell me…does an ear infection, sore throat, barking cough, and pink eye say end of summer fun to you? 

There must be a better way to carve out time for self-care than to be SICK on vacation!

I was well rested, had all my supplements and Chinese herbs packed, spent time in the country absorbing the quiet, looked forward to spending time with family, blocked off time to go to the lake with my girlfriend and had a date to learn new card making techniques with my aunt.

My plan going forward  is to be proactive with self-care

  • I’ll open my journal and pour my heart out on the page to get the stories that are bothering me out of my body and I start rewrite the story and find a solution to stress.
  • I’ll gladly take to the couch and watch a chick flick in the middle of the afternoon once a week not to feel like I’m swallowing razor blades!
  • I’ll happily schedule a massage to allow myself to release the deep knowing issues that I refuse to acknowledge, yet have taken up permanent residence in the recesses of my body so that I can get a good night’s sleep.

I’d love to know how you keep your balance in this fast-paced world.

Please tell me what you do to handle the stress…

[Coaxing Creativity Tip] Spell spunk…YOU

s.p.u.n.k with Writer Unleashed

s-p-u-n-k with Writer Unleashed

 

Independence…ability to act freely, self-confidence, spunk, outspoken, or boldness.

Do any of those descriptions ring a bell for you?

No?

Well, it’s time that they did!

Let freedom ring!

Your day of reckoning doesn’t have to come with a revolution. It can come quietly as you take a stand for yourself today by turning right instead of left on your walk today, choose something more exotic than vanilla or chocolate to celebrate July as National Ice Cream Month, prepare fish instead of hamburger for dinner, wear red (or a flattering version of a festive hue) instead of that customary (read safe) shade of beige, read a whole article, or chapter, instead of watching that sit-com summer rerun on TV.

Where on that face do you see evidence of anyone who had the ability to be outspoken let alone bold?

That child only wanted to please and for quite a while, that was the story for the woman she grew up to be. However, circumstances forced her to see the consequences of always pleasing others at the expense of her own well-being.

That little girl could be your daughter, your mother, your aunt, your niece, your cousin, your best friend, your co-worker…it could be YOU!

Choose you…speak up for yourself!

You don’t have to wait until you have a health crisis to take care of yourself.

Rewrite your story!

You can choose to put yourself on that To Do List…be outspoken and buy that summer novel for yourself, then boldly read it in a bubble bath tonight, show some spunk and schedule a massage before you desperately need it and claim the freedom to take care of yourself.

By the way, taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you’ll stop doing what comes naturally to you…taking care of your loved ones…it only means you have demonstrated your ability to act freely and choose to include yourself among those whom you nurture, love and support. 

And being included is a  wonderful thing!