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Back to School Blues: 5 Tips to Change the Color of Your Mood

Are you feeling down, depressed, and blue? Ugh…Me too! It is end of summer and kind of like the end of March break for those of us who never went back to school or work, except for online. I worked online as an educational assistant and my son with special needs participated online for school. The return to school seems strange and so uncertain. We had training last week for 3 days on new policies and procedures for safety and the staggered return to school.

For the most part, the day will consist of orchestrated movements around the school between arrival, nutrition breaks, recess, and departure. Principals and administration have my sympathy currently. What a challenging time. Every step of the day requires so much consideration, especially in a large school.

Along with the blues there is so much confusion and fear going around about the virus, the use of masks, the best kinds of masks to use. So many unknowns …how it spreads? Will I get it? I have a low immune system. If I get it will I survive? Can you get it again if you survived? Have I had it? I have heard many say they that they feel that they had it earlier in the year before the outbreak. I feel like I had it late January, I was in bed for a few days, low grade fever, the chills were unbearable ( moving caused them to increase), my body ached like I was run over by an 18 wheeler transport. I have had juvenile arthritis my whole my life and the all over body pain was excruciating. The pain in my lungs when I took a deep breath was one that I have never experienced even through bouts of bronchial asthma. I feel like I have residual affects from it as well.

Symptoms…Another confusing aspect of covid-19. The list keeps growing. I am beginning to think if you have a hang nail you must have covid-19. Just joking check with health sites for the most updated symptom list.

Asymptomatic? That is the most confusing, If I had it but never showed signs how will I ever know? How high are the risks of getting it? Should I just hibernate forever? Pondering if I am I a terrible mom if I send my child for his education and social skill building? Am I operating too much on fear if I do not send him? The decisions can be overwhelming. Congratulations on whatever decision you have decided to make for your child I am sure the decision you made was not taken lightly nor was it easy.

Now what? The whole pandemic scenario and decision-making process has been an opportunity for skill building and use of your tools to avoid the recipe for stress and fear, which is not asking questions, focusing on negative, not giving your own self care a priority.

  1. Keep in mind the power of focus. Focus on what is positive and good.
  2. Ask questions! It is your child’s and your health at risk. You have the right to know if you are being protected and then decide if you feel safe based on the answers that you receive.
  3. Avoid self doubt go by your intuition. Let your intuition be your guide. If you feel a situation is unsafe or you feel like you need to change your mind on your choices. Follow your heart and do so.
  4. Self care will be the best thing that you can do for yourself and your family at this time. Use all your strategies: meditation, journal, gratitude, exercise, nutritious foods, drink plenty of water.
  5. Feeling stressed? Put your hand on your heart, take a breath and ask what is the most loving thing that I can do for myself at this moment, and then do it!

And now, as we move onto the next season Autumn, it is a perfect reminder to be present, find beauty in what is around us and like the gently falling leaves do… let go of fear and worries and know the best is yet to come! Believe!

Be confident and hope filled! It is time to drop the blues and add oranges, reds, yellows, browns…. All the beautiful colors that Autumn brings…. Bring on pumpkins, spice and everything nice. I look forward to wearing leggings, tall boots, warm comfy oversized sweaters and drinking hot apple cider. What do you look forward to?

I am ready! Are you?

To your health & wellness,

Sheena

Get a free journal to write your fears, and worries away…. http://sheenalsmith.com/free-gift/

Choosing Happiness – 11 Ways to be Happier Now

11 Ways to Make Happiness Your Choice during Times of Crisis and Isolation:

It truly is YOUR Choice! With so much overwhelm and stress in our lives these days due to this recent pandemic of Covid-19, we really must be mindful and aware how we create our own happiness just as much as we can create unhappiness. The quickest way to unhappiness is comparison. The easiest way to happiness is gratitude. There is always something to be grateful for. Always!

How are you feeling? Are you feeling isolated and alone? Are you feeling jealous and sad when you see others having things seemingly “easier” or “better” in life that you feel you should have as well you may find yourself falling into the zone of unhappiness. Are you wishing for things to be different than they are?  Are you feeling angry and resentful because this isn’t the way life “should”be?  What are you thinking? Feeling? Are you  feeling like things are going downhill?  Are you afraid?  The world can feel like a  scary place right now!  Are you simply wishing for things to be different than they are right now?

This can be a powerful  time of growth and self reflection. More than ever people are called upon to be stronger, resourceful and more resilient. They are forced to switch their whole lifestyles, completely change their routines, face financial uncertainty and reassess what truly matters most. It is a time to make self care a top priority. what you focus on may make all the difference between being happy or not being happy.

What have you been focusing on? Is it causing you to go down that rabbit hole of darkness? depression? sadness? If so …

It’s time to change your focus. You always get more of what you focus on. There is no better time then now to focus on everything that is good and right while at the same time it’s a great time to express your feelings constructively.

Here are some of my favorite ways to make happiness my choice….
1. Spend quality time with family (if you live with them in person) and family/friends (online for the time being through social media sources) doing “fun” activities where you can share laughter and love.

2. Get enough sleep. You’ll be more productive and happier when you are well rested. People are feeling many emotions during this time ranging from sadness, grief, anger and even depression. Our lives have been thrown into and a whole new way of being. Eventually a new found sense of being will come to be. Then, peace will be found through reflecting, resting and determining what your priorities are.

3. Go outside and enjoy plenty of fresh air. Being in nature can help you feel grounded and energized.

4. Exercise-there are so many benefits to exercise. Find something that you love to do and do it often.  Dance-Dance-Dance!

5. Meditate and/or find time to relax, unwind and listen to energizing music. It can ease your mind and restore your soul.

6.  Play-especially if you have children get out and play with them. You’ll feel younger for it. (watch for my upcoming post on activities to do and games to play)

7. Find ways to be of service to others. Giving back promotes a feeling of wellness and belonging. You can definitely make the world a better place somehow. We all have our gifts. Send someone a surprise supper, a pamper gift (bubble bath, candle, wine, chocolates), send a card or handwritten note. Send a gift card or certificate for a local business to help support them now during their challenging times. Call someone and check in on them. I have sent out over 140 cards since March to check in on people and remind them to stay safe and be well.

8. Smile and laugh daily-even if it means turning on a comedy channel. Find funny shows on you tube. Videos of pets doing silly things always makes people laugh and smile.

9. Have plans and goals and take steps to move forward each day. Your success depends upon it. Take advantage of this time to finish your home to-do lists. Organize your home. Take the de clutter challenge. For 9 days straight throw out or recycle 27 items to give away, get rid of or sell. If you miss a day you have to start over. It’s a very freeing feeling to release and let go of items you do not use, are broken, or you haven’t used in years.

10. For fun, Plan for future travel and the adventures you will have when this is over. While you are dreaming of your trip(s) you can raise your vibration through thinking of all the amazing experiences you will have when you go on this future trip.

11. Last but not least…..make it a priority to express your gratitude daily. Choose faith over fear! Throughout the day consciously be thankful. Each night write out all the things you experienced throughout the day that you are thankful and grateful for. Go off to sleep in your “gratitude” mindset and you will marinate in that positively throughout the night.  Sweet Dreams and Keep Smiling!

Get your free journal here-a gift from me. enjoy!

What are your favorite ways to find your smile and be happy? Are you wrinting in a journal daily? What are you doing for self care? What’s your best tip? Add in below in the comments.

Sending you love,

Sheena

P.S. Please note this article is for informational purposes. It is not a substitute for seeking medical assistance and advice from your physician. If you are feeling depressed or overwhelmed please contact professional assistance.

21 Ways to Boost Your Self Confidence

21 Ways to Boost Your Confidence Especially During These Trying Times

The best way to begin to build your self confidence is to know where you are. What are your skills, gifts and talents? Are you clear about your goals and dreams? What do you think you are afraid of? What skills can you learn to change what you think? Sometimes just changing the way you look at things can change everything? What do you need to learn or get better at?
Self confidence is a skill that can be learned with effort and energy put into changing oneself.

1. What would you like to be better at? Right now, many are just wanting to be better at coping with all these lifestyle changes. Make self care your focus if that’s where you are at.  Develop a routine and a plan. If you are feeling balanced and up for a challenge to make the most of your time to develop your skills more go for it! If you would like to be a better speaker but would rather pull out your teeth before ever attempting to speak in public (the greatest fear). Take some online courses or join toastmasters. Many learn their skills through doing them and practice, practice, practice. Get experience- them more you do something the better you will be at it. Want to be a better writer, same thing take a course and write, write, write. With the internet your choices for how to begin to increase your self confidence are limitless. You get out of it what you put into it. Want to be a better parent? Focus on your priority and simply be a better parent.

2. Don’t be so hard on yourself! Do not focus on your flaws. We all have them. We are all perfectly imperfect. Focus on your gift and talents. Be kind and generous. Are you able to accept a compliment without an explanation or excuse? Such as “oh this its old” or “thanks, I hate my hair-it’s too thin”. Those are not accepting compliments. Simply say “Thank You”! Gratitude! Attitude! If after receiving a compliment you say something under your own breath, think about why you are saying that or doing that. Awareness of your thoughts and actions matter. Be grateful!

3. Look in the mirror and practice kindness with yourself. Use “I am” statements. It may seem awkward at first but stick with it until you mean what you say. Speak kindly to yourself and love yourself. There is only one you in this world. How special is that?

4. Recognize your fears and put them in their place. EFT is a great way to get beyond fears and move forward in life. By noticing and paying attention to what you think when you are thinking negatively or have fearful thoughts you can then replace those thoughts with positive.

5. Pay attention to your posture. Are you slouching, walking with the weight of the world on your shoulders or are you standing tall? Smiling? Looking confident and making eye contact when you have conversations with others?

6. Get plenty of fresh air and exercise. Nature helps people to stay grounded, more focused, more energetic and helps you to be clear with your thoughts about what you truly want out of life. Meditate and be learn how to be calm. We hear our best answers when we are calm.

7. How are you dressed? Are you dressed for success? How you dress can be confidence building in itself. Although, working from home in my pj’s can feel pretty great too!

8. Imagine yourself as you wish to be. Imagination is one of your most powerful allies on the road to changing your levels of self confidence.

9. Changing your thoughts and building confidence isn’t an instant fix. You must practice and create new habits. New habits of though. New habits of being confident and taking action consistently.

10. Never allow others to put you down. Stand up for yourself. Be assertive. We teach other show to treat us by what we allow.

11. Be kind and generous to others. What you put out comes back to you. Put out kind thoughts to others. Wish others well.

12. Practice self care. Look after you-drink lots of water, eat nutritious foods take quality supplements. Take in some sunshine every day!

13. Stay out of drama. Avoid negativity and the negative energy of others. This energy can cause you to be down on yourself and others. Know that things are rarely as they appear to be. Think positive and find the good in everything. There is always some good in everything.

14. As for help when you need it. It’s important for your growth and success. We all can get by with a little help from our friends and family. Feeling successful and knowing that you have people to count on builds confidence too.

15. Don’t allow yourself to be discouraged when there is a set back. Let it make you stronger. Learn the lesson and get back in the game. Persistence is key. Can you imagine it Thomas Edison, creator of the light had of quit at 999 tries to invent the light bulb? DO NOT GIVE UP!

16. Believe in yourself! Remind yourself often why you are so great. It’s not an ego thing it’s a matter of building confidence and knowing our value. Don’t play small! Stand up! Stand out!

17. Take risks and step out of your comfort zone. Often the life you dream of is just beyond the light of what you see.

18. Stop holding yourself back from going for your dreams. Build your self confidence and self esteem. Value yourself! Get rid of the fear of failure. Don’t let the start stop you! Begin!

19. Follow your instincts. If you have a feeling or a hunch about something…listen to yourself. This builds confidence and self worth.

20. Know that you matter and your dreams are important. Everyone was born rich and deserves a wonderful life.

21. Sometimes the best thing to do is nothing…just “be”. Take the pressure of “should” off yourself and relax. Then, take steps when you are rested, not feeling overwhelmed or burnt out. What is meant to be will be and it will flow easily. Life is not meant to be a struggle.

The greatest quote that I have heard and now follow when I coach clients on going for their dreams is by Henry David Thoreau “If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, he will live the life he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours”
Go for your dreams! Be confident! Be fearless!
Sheena L. Smith
Dream Builder Coach