I have typically been the type of person whose entire day would go wrong if, say, I overcooked my morning bacon. Or sub my toe heading out the door. Recently I came across a few things that have helped propel me into this wonderful feeling that consists of equal parts freedom, love and confidence. 

1. Loving people.

I took my dog to the vet the other week and my mother and boyfriend came as well. My mother, being her typically bubbly self spoke to everyone as she walked in with her contagious smile. She greeted cats, humans, dogs with the same reverence and love and, as always joked like laughter was the ony thing that mattered in the world. When I went back to the vet to pic up a prescription, the girl behind the counter told me “You know, your mom is like the sweetest person ever. She’s like a little butterfly. I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone so wonderful before.”

And it’s true. My mom has only made enemies because she was too strong, or too beautiful. And I say enemies loosely, because my mother has never in her life hated anyone. Even when they did her wrong, she had the strength to let go. I have noticed more and more how I am NOT like my mother, but do wish to be. I am trying my best, now, to emulate her. WWMD? What would Mommy Do?

Overcooked bacon? Call it Cajun or blackened.

Stubbed toe? Kept you in the house an extra second as needed for the cosmic plan of your life.

2. The Alchemist.

I’ve never read anything like it. I know that’s what everyone says about it, but it is truly unique int he way that it is a piece of fiction that has the power to move and motivate you like nothing else in the world. In reading about Santiago’s travels, encounters and experiences we all can’t help but compare ourselves to him. Are we achieving our dreams? Are we accepting all that occurs – negative and positive – as incidents that will put us exactly where we need to be? If not, you’re not letting the Universe speak to you. God, your God, is speaking to you and you’re not listening. I am beginning to listen.

3. Joan Didion’s “On Self Respect”. 

So what if you’re an accident waiting to happen? Love and respect yourself for what you are. It’s not about anyone else’s approval. It’s about you. Are you confident enough to be who you are, flaws and all, to withstand any negativity thrown your way be others? It’s the single best essay I’ve ever read. I am not longer seeing myself through the lens of the world, but through my own. I appreciate my havoc-wreaking, dramatic, over indulgent self. And I respect myself enough to be honest with myself, and to take my own criticisms.

4. The January Issue of Real Simple.

This month’s issue of Real Simple includes so many goodies to help you balance your life. The article that hit home for me was “On an Even Keel”. It asks scientists the best ways to handle situations, i.e. someone messes up your order at the coffee shop. I have already put a couple of the tips to use, and lo and behold, positivity where I had not expected it. There’s also articles that help with finance and the only quote from post-College Drop out Kanye I’ll respect is “Having money’s not everything, not having it is”. Money issues can cause stress and you lose energy. To focus on what you love, get these things organized – your home, your money and your mind. This issue is the best magazine of its kind to be printed. From cover to cover you will feel like you’re getting great advice from a woman who has it all.

So whether you’re going to check these out or find the things that spark excitement in you, here’s hoping your new year is looking bright! 


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