A Writer on Writing. One Step forward, two steps back…

Download PDF


A story to share about my writing journey
With writing, at times, you never know where the words might take you. For me, I’ve been in the process of writing my fiction book for about 7 years now. I know, crazy right? Do you want to hear something even crazier?

Recently (I’m talking just a few days ago) I decided to start over on the manuscript. Yes, you read that last line correctly. Rewrite the script. Why, you might ask? Because I realized I could write it better than it was.
Now, I’m not trying to be pompous here. For you fellow writers know that starting over is one of the hardest things to do. I’ve spent tons and tons of hours pining over the plot, the characters, the scenes, etc. but in the end of trying to move stuff around, I realized, the depth of the story wasn’t there. And I can write better than the current manuscript. Now, that’s not a dig on myself.

What to do next?

1) Remember that everything takes time
2) Know that I’d rather the manuscript be at it’s best and not send it out
before that time
3) Understand that writing a fiction book is different than writing a nonfiction book
4) Allow the story to unfold more naturally instead of trying to make it something it shouldn’t be
5) Embrace the process and enjoy it while it’s happening

#1 Remember that everything takes time –URGGGGHHH! Why does it have to take so long! Sometimes, I am just so impatient and want things to happen faster! But in the past, when I’ve stopped and allowed things to flow as they are supposed to, I do find that it goes smoother and comes out better than expected. I guess because there is a reason why things happen in the way they do, right? And the same goes for this book. It will come out when I’m done writing it, not before it’s ready.

#2 Giving it time to be the best it can be –For me, I’ve learned there isn’t anything such as perfection. We are all the way we are because we are—simple but true. With our flaws and all. And what if the flaws we think we possess are not flaws at all. Same goes for my book and writing. If nothing is perfect, than the book doesn’t can’t reach perfection so why strive for something unobtainable. However, my book can be it’s best and that’s what I would like to see for my book.

#3 Writing fiction is different than writing non-fiction –Boy is this true! On one hand, writing fiction gives you freedom of your imagination. On the other hand, with having your imagination to draw from in your writing, it can be hard to pick the right personality for a character, a enticing scene or captivating plot. Knowing that it’s different allows me some room to grow and learn.

#4 Allow the story to unfold naturally –With my first fiction book, I was initially writing it close from my memory of life events, but now I realized (duh!) that I don’t have to stick to those event verbatim if I don’t want to at any given time while I’m writing. And I can add in more depth to the characters instead of choosing to write from one person’s point of view. YAY!

#5 Embrace the process –As a lover of words, I need to just relax and enjoy the ride. I need to remember there isn’t a timer that says I need to have this manuscript done by a certain time. I want to take the time to enjoy the journey of sitting down at my computer and see how the story will unfold with these characters, Heather, Marc, Lillian, Sophia, and more…

What lessons have you learned on your writing journey? What advice would you give your fellow writers?

I’ve Been Reading – ‘Life is a Verb’ by Patti Digh

Download PDF

Book by Patti Digh

Book by Patti Digh

‘Life is a Verb’ by Patti Digh – A Book I’ve Been Reading
Great title of a book, don’t you think? I love it. And the story behind the title makes it even more thought provoking.
In October 2003, Patti Digh’s stepfather was diagnosed with lung cancer. He died 37 days later. The timeframe made an impression on her. What emerged was a commitment to ask herself every morning: What would I be doing today if I had only 37 days left to live? The answers changed her life and led to this new kind of book. Part meditation, part how-to guide, part memoir, Life is a Verb is all heart.

Within these pages―enhanced by original artwork and wide, inviting margins ready to be written in―Digh identifies six core practices to jump-start a meaningful life: Say Yes, Trust Yourself, Slow Down, Be Generous, Speak Up, and Love More. Within this framework she supplies 37 edgy, funny, and literary life stories, each followed by a “do it now” 10-minute exercise as well as a practice to try for 37 days―and perhaps the rest of your life.

Here are a few highlights I enjoyed (among many) while reading ‘Life is a Verb’.

1) Your Dreams are Waiting – Digh offers a quote by Tom Peters “Celebrate what you want more of”. She gives the reader a challenge to go out and purchase birthday candles and for the next 37 days every day find something to celebrate, even if it’s something small. She says even the smallest of things are even more fun to celebrate because they aren’t expected. She calls this chapter Intensity: Say Yes! which is about celebrating things in your life you see, people you meet and things you get to witness or be a part of each day. Don’t wait, celebrate today.

Teresa’s Tidbit I concur with this because although I practiced gratitude beforehand. I truly focus on it more now since my mom passed last year. Once she passed, I thought, “Teresa, what makes you happy. Now is the time to make it a reality and do it more than ever. Don’t put it on the back burner anymore!”

2) Everything isn’t Important, Focus where you Want – Another chapter is titled, “Intention: Slow Down”. I like this quote she has in there by Frank Zappa, “Without deviation, progress in not possible.” Take life on from a new perspective but you may need to slow down (even stop) to see it. And engage with it.

Teresa’s Tidbit With our fast paced lifestyle seemingly needing to get faster and bigger, the need for more seems to be the thing to “have”. But I believe and know it doesn’t have to be that way in order to live a full and happy life. But again, it depends on what you want, what is important to you and where your focus is at. For me, I don’t need to be a best selling author, I don’t have to have a mansion or the latest car. Why? Those for me are not things that will make me happy and fulfilled. My life where I get to write my books and blog, where I get to dive into my creativity through other means like painting, where I get the opportunity to help fellow writers with coaching, consulting and doing workshops, a life where I have a nice cozy house and a car that works great for me, and best of all, a family that loves and supports me I am truly blessed and grateful. But it took me to recognize that I don’t need to have all the glory that I “THINK” I wanted. I needed to slow down with intention to realize what my ideal life looked life and realize I was pretty much already there.

3) At the center is Love – In this chapter, she begins with a quote from Rumi, “Your task is not to seek Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” Then Digh goes onto the ask, “Do we love ourselves for who we are or only what we have?”
She adds in another quote, “Love is an act of courage, not of fear?” Paolo Freire. Does our world condone love without fear. Do you have to be fearful in order to love…

Teresa’s Tidbit I’d like to add something to that above—“Do you only love yourself when you feel you have achieved something that is good by society’s standard or get the newest (insert material object). Why don’t we learn to love ourselves for who we are from our soul, the essence of who we are meant to be from birth and come to be it in our physical world. Why don’t we get taught to love ourselves without being fearful. Because when you choose to love yourself, the realness of love is there in all the variety of ways it shows up.

I enjoyed reading this book as it was a REAL reminder for me that this life is precious and to find the love, joy and simplicity in the things and people around us and even in us.

You can pick up your copy here on Amazon. And you can read more about Patti (and find out more about her programs and other books at 37 days.com

Top Five Tips for Dating from Danielle Elyse, author of Warning Signs

Download PDF

Top five tips for dating: How to avoid “Red Light” relationships*
by Danielle Elyse (Ward), author of Warning Signs


1. *Don’t lose yourself*. When you fall head over heels for someone, don’t bump your head! Stay grounded in your relationship. If you were involved in activities and hobbies before you started dating, continue doing those things. Remember, your mate was attracted to you as you originally presented yourself, so there’s no need to change and become someone else.

2. *Know what you want*. When you go to a restaurant, you take a moment to peruse the menu before selecting something that appeals to your taste buds. You don’t just walk in, close your eyes and point to any item on the menu. Why do that in a relationship? Take time, see what appeals to you and choose what you want in a potential mate. Create a “negotiable/non-negotiable” chart to hold yourself accountable. Unlike a
restaurant selection, the effects of this choice will be around for longer than a few hours, so choose wisely.

3. *Be ready*. Did you take the time to “heal and deal” before entering into a new relationship? You should heal from your past relationship, and deal with any baggage you may still be holding onto. Make sure you are
prepared for all that a relationship entails — the good, bad and the ugly. Dating someone seriously will require you to be present, and you can’t do that if you haven’t healed or dealt with past issues.

4. *Avoid common traps*. It is imperative to listen to what your partner is telling you. You may hear that actions speak louder than words, but words are clear as well. Pay attention to what you hear, and give it credence. We usually give indicators about who we are in our casual conversation, so listen up! Also, avoid making emotional decisions that counter your standards (i.e., being caught up in a relationship with someone who’s married or being pressured to behave in a way that makes you uncomfortable).

5. *Expand your reach*. When we date, we tend to want to spend all of our time with that special someone and no one else. While quality time is great, it is also necessary to spend time around your partner’s family and friends. Watch the interactions, note the conversations and take advantage of the bird’s-eye view. Your mate’s guard will be down around loved ones. This more relaxed state will allow you to get a better idea of who you are dating.

Thanks to Danielle for being a guest on Inspiration Nation. In cased you missed the interview, here is the Danielle talking with host, Teresa Morrow, sharing about her book, Warning Signs


Tuesday Marketing Tip – Online Marketing Check Up

Download PDF

Photo by Dreamstime

Photo by Dreamstime

This week’s Tuesday Marketing Tip is about giving your online marketing a checkup. Just like you get a physical or medical “check up” for your body each year, it’s a good idea to do something similar for your online marketing strategy.

An online marketing checkup involves going onto Google and seeing what comes up when you search by your author/book title or business name. What comes up in the search results? Is it what you want for your potential clients, customers, or readers to see? How about your social media profiles? Do they reflect your those things you wish to be known for? If not, this is the time to update or change them.

Here is more on doing a check up with your online marketing–

Writers on Writing, Blogging and Books to Change Your Life – Around the Web

Download PDF

Around the Web Book Marketing & Writing Resources


As I am a lover of the world of words, I enjoy sharing resources from the internet from different blogs, videos, articles and websites on a variety of subjects as writing, publishing, and organizing.

One of my favorite places to find and get books (and connect with fellow readers and writers) is GOODREADS!
Great place to celebrate books –Goodreads.

A great journalist and one of the best interviewers (I think) is Charlie Rose. Here he is sharing about writers on writing

One of the things I like to share is about blogging as there is always something more to learn in this fascinating space we an individually occupy on the web. Here is a site that shares The Secrets of Long Term Success of Blogging

You and I may think we have all the grammar typos slips and mishaps fixed…here is the Grammar Girl’s to Clean up your Writing (hey, no harm in checking it out, right?)

I’m always finding another book I want to read that seems that it will enlighten, support, encourage or transform my life in some way. Here is a website that shares 32 Books to change your life

If you have resources you would like to share, please do so. The more the merrier!

Inspiration Nation welcomed Sue Sabella-Marsh aka Reverend Sue

Download PDF

Inspiration Nation Radio brings Sue Sabella Marsh -author of “Transitions to Transformations” and “SurThrival”

Sue Sabella pic

Another fellow Floridian, Sue Sabella-Marsh joined me on Inspiration Nation Radio to share about her books that highlights her writings and her poetry. Reverend Sue is a trained Usui Reiki Master and was ordained as an Interfaith minister in 2011. She has been able to see the Human Auric Field a.k.a. “Auras” on herself and others since age 11 and is also an Auric Portrait Artist giving folks a glimpse into their own Human Auric Field through these portraits. Reverend Sue is also Clairscentient. Clairaudient and Clairsatient as well as a Medium. Reverend Sue is the host of the popular blogtalkradio.com show, “Transitions to Transformation Radio Show™” which is broadcast online every Monday night 8 pm Eastern Standard Time.

Be sure to check out Reverend Sue’s book, ‘Transitions to Transformations’ and her latest, ‘Surthrival’
transitions_to_trans_cover_for_kindle-1 img_1715

If you missed this episode with Reverend Sue, you can listen to the archive here on Blog Talk Radio, Inspiration Nation Radio.

5 Time Management Tips for Writers

Download PDF

Young business woman thinking.
As a writer myself, I know that it can be hard to “find time” to write. But is it really that we don’t have time to write? I don’t know if I believe that anymore. Now, I’m not saying we all don’t have many other things to do…HOWEVER…if we want to write, REALLY write, we will find the time to do so.

    Here are some tips to help writers manage their time better to get to their passion of writing:

1) Make it a priority – As I was mentioning above, if writing is important we will make time to write. Just like anything that is important in our lives, we do find time to do it. Mark your writing as you would any other appointment in your calendar. Don’t waiver from the importance of this writing appointment unless, of course, there is an emergency. Which leads me to the next tip…

2) Enjoy mini writing sessions – Have you ever heard the phrase, “You can’t eat an elephant all in one bite.You have to eat it one bite at a time”. The same thing goes for writing. You don’t have to set aside hours of time to write in order to feel like you are a successful writer. You get to choose the writing schedule that works for you. At times, that may mean you write for 20 mins each day for a week. Or it could mean you write for 5 mins in your car and then 20 min at your desk and then 10 min at the gym. Each time you make the time to write, you are writing.

3) Let’s others know – Share your passion of writing with your loved ones. Let them know how important writing is to you. Sometimes, as writers, we feel as if no one will understand or support our writing efforts. However, most of the time, if we express the importance of it to us, those who care and truly want the best for us, will become our biggest cheerleaders in our writing journey.

4) Ask and Get Help – Many times I’ve heard from fellow writers, I don’t have time to write because I have so many other things to do. One of the things I learned in my self love and self care journey is, asking for help is not a bad thing. In fact, most of the time, other people in your life are wanting to be of help to you, if you would just ask. This could be asking a friend to carpool your kids to a weekly event. Or it could be asking your spouse to help with the dishes after dinner. Remember: You don’t have to do everything yourself! When you allow others to help you do other things, this creates time for you writing.

5) Know your best time to write – If you are a parent of school age kids, don’t assume you will be able to write at 3pm in the afternoon. Know when the best time for you to write any given day. For those who have kids, perhaps a good time is 9am or 10am. If you have a full time job and kids, once you get the kids to bed maybe a better option. If you aren’t a morning person (I’m not), I choose to write either during the afternoon or later in the evening. If you are a morning person, get up early and write away. Write when your creative juices are at their best. When we try and go against that, it can just lead to frustration.

Writing is something you enjoy doing. It’s part of who you are so realizing there are some ways to management time to write is what I wish to share with you.

I’m going to be offering more tips, tools and strategies at the Time Management for Writers Workshop Wednesday May13th at 6:00pm-7:30pm at Largo Library. Register Now!


Tuesday Book Marketing Tip from The Author’s Cheerleader – Search on Internet

Download PDF

Where are you on the Internet? Tuesday Minute Book Marketing Tip from The Author’s Cheerleader

Laptops connect to the global networks (white background)

Laptops connect to the global networks (white background)

As the internet is ever changing, it’s a good idea from time to time to check and see how you are showing up on the internet.

How are you being found on the internet?

What words are people using to find you on the internet?

How are people searching for you on the internet to find you?

Where are you being found on the internet?

And are these the places, spaces and ways you want to be found on the internet?

Be sure that how and where people are finding you on the internet is aligned with where and how you WANT to be found on the web!

That’s what this week’s Tuesday Minute Book Marketing Tip from The Author’s Cheerleader is focused on how you are being found on the internet. Listen below.

Tampa Bay Books Spotlight – Afsaneh Noori, author of Change Thrivers

Download PDF

Tampa Bay Books Spotlight – Afsaneh Noori, author of Change Thrivers

Please share about your background (where you were born, where you grew up, siblings/family dynamic, career background , where you live now, etc.)

I was born and raised in Tehran, Iran and moved to US when i was 20. I was the only daughter with 3 brothers. The oldest 2 were much older and they moved to US when I was very young. I grew up with my youngest brother who is 2 years younger than me.

My family was one of the oldest and most influential families in Iran. My parents were wealthy, well educated and well traveled, giving me opportunities that were not available to most girls in Iran. My father was a general in the army of the Shah. My mother was to run a household of servants and to be an asset to my father’s career goals.

My father retired when I was relatively young. My parents decided to move the rest of the family to US to prevent me from a marriage they didn’t believe was good for me. I was in love and adamant to marry a young man from a different religion and background whom I met in college. The difficulty with this marriage would have been similar to an inter-racial marriage in the 60’s in the US. We would not have been accepted by anyone.

Once in US, I continued my college education and became an Industrial engineer. I worked for the local electric company for 13 years. Mid career at this company, I shifted my focus from engineering to internal organizational development consulting and training. My last project was leading the efforts for a company wide culture change initiative to prepare employees for the changing environment in the utilities.

In 1994, I established Socio-Tech Systems, an organizational development and training company focusing on organizational change, team and leadership development.

When did you begin your writing journey?
I don’t consider myself a writer although I have authored the book Change Thrivers. It is more accurate to say that I had something important to teach and I wrote it in a book.

What inspired you to write this book?
Having gone through a great deal of personal changes and having witnessed numerous other people go through change in the various organizations, I have learned a thing or two about the process of change and the difference between resilient people and those who succumbed to the pressures of life. I began to notice the qualities that helped some people make the best of the challenges they faced and make a better life as the result of having learned from these events. This was valuable information on change thriving skills that I wanted to pass on to others.

Please share about your book, Change Thrivers.

CT_book_1Change Thrivers – Your resource guide for making change work, is a combination:
Memoir Intriguing personal life stories explain and simplify the concepts while adding warmth and personality to the book. People tend to remember and identify with ideas better when they are told in a story. The stories are especially interesting since they have the exotic elements of an Iranian-American woman’s life challenges.
Since people often have to manage multiple rapid changes in their lives, the goal of the book is to help readers create a plan to become change-ready. They are guided to evaluate the support structure in their lives, their attitude and belief systems, and their approach towards change. The people that have gained the most are those who created a plan to apply the information to their own lives by completing the worksheets at the end of each chapter.
The assessment alone allows the reader a self evaluation that will help them to identify the elements that supports them in change as well as those things that they need to develop or strengthen in order to be change-ready.

Change Thrivers book not only offers concepts that helps reader understand the nature of change and their reactions to it, but it also offers variety of solutions and tools to help them navigate the process. The reader will find a book that has plenty of concise and clear lists, models, tips, charts and inspirational quotes that make reading and absorbing the information enjoyable and simple.

Change Thrivers is the basis for my speaking, training and coaching work.

What are some takeaways you would like your reader to get from reading your book?
• Our experience of changes and challenges are directly related to our perception and our attitude.
• We have the power to change our thoughts and therefore our experience.
• Life works in cycles and there are predictable phases to every change that can be managed easier with awareness, knowledge and tools.

What is your advice to beginning writers?
The best advice I have received is to write about what you know well and have something you really want to share.

What was your biggest challenge in writing this book?
Interestingly enough, writing the book was not as challenging as the publishing of it. I know it sounds like a cliché but once I was clear about the topic and the audience I was writing it for, the rest just poured through me. I began writing one night at 9:00 pm and when I was done, it was 2:00 am and I had written 37 pages.

What has been your greatest reward in writing this book?
The knowledge that I have brought something valuable to this world that has the potential for helping others long after I am gone.

Most writers are readers. What books are on your “to-read” list?
I enjoy fiction for relation. I am reading “Call me Zelda”. The non-fiction I am reading is Executive Coaching –A systems approach to engaging leaders with their challenges.

Where can readers find out more about you and your book?

Question for fun sake—what was your favorite childhood meal and why?
The Iranian national dish, Ghormeh sabzi which literally means sautéed greens. The main ingredients are a mixture of sautéed herbs, consisting mainly of large quantities of parsley, leeks or green onions, coriander, seasoned with the key spice of “shambalileh” (dried fenugreek) leaves. Other ingredients are stewed meat, red kidney beans and spices. It is served over rice (link for a recipe http://mypersiankitchen.com/ghormeh-sabzi-persian-herb-stew/)

This is my comfort food. It is colorful and aromatic. Just one whiff of it takes me back to another world.

Inspiration Nation Interviewed Mary Jane Cronin, author of “A Caregiver Connection”

Download PDF

Inspiration Nation interviewed MaryJane Cronin, author of ‘A Caregiver Connection’
I had the pleasure of having a fellow Floridian on my show, Inspiration Nation, Ms. Mary Jane Cronin of Cronin Counseling and Coaching.

We talked about one of those subjects that too many of us face more and more these days…being caregivers. Mary Jane offered many great tips to caregivers such as being mindful of taking time for yourself while caregiving.

She highlights her insights and tips also on her blog called Cronin’s Chat. One of her latest is about Helping a neighbor or friend cope with loss. She says, “The news of late has been filled with people dying. It may have been an accident, a murder or a suicide. Hearing this sends many people into self-reflection. “What if it was a member of my family, a co-worker, or even me? I can say from experience that before the funeral of my loved ones, I was having a difficult time concentrating. If you are a friend or family member there are a few things you could do to help those suffering.” You can read more on her blog, Cronin’s Chat.

On Inspiration Nation Radio, Mary Jane and I talked about the subject of caregiving as she focuses on the connection of the caregiver in her latest book, ‘A Caregiver Connection’ to help those of us whom have been guided to be fully in that role for a loved one.

If you missed our conversation on Inspiration Nation, you can listen to it via Blog Talk Radio, Inspiration Nation.

Hey Check these out! Writing & Book Marketing Resources from The Author’s Cheerleader

Download PDF

Writing & Book Marketing Resources from The Author’s Cheerleader

As I am a lover of the world of words, I enjoy sharing resources from the internet from different blogs, videos, articles and websites on a variety of subjects as writing, publishing, and organizing.

The first one is about one of my favorite subjects – Motivation.
5 Simple Motivation Hacks Although I don’t know if I agree with all of these ideas, I do like the “create no alternative outcome” as a motivating option. The way I see it, when you set a goal this one says, you are all in. Go for the score. Do it and don’t allow there to be another option.

As writers, the publishing world is a part of the process. And these days one of the ways writers can see their work come to life is by self publishing through Amazon’s own CreateSpace. It’s the publisher I used to put both of my books, “Life Lessons from the Heart” and “Healing from Broken Trust” out into the world. Check out this publishing option for you- – Self publishing a book on CreateSpace

For my fellow writers and other lovers of the world of words…here is a list of 100 words…nice and not-so-nice. Some I liked are: Chrysalis: protective covering, Enrapture: delighted, Myriad: great number and Sonorous: loud, impressive, imposing. Check out the list and let me know which ones you resonate with:Daily Writing Tips – 100 Beautiful and Ugly Words

Organizing is one of those things that helps us whether we are a writer, blogger, and/or author. – How to Organize your Business (Yes, your writing is a business). I use files for not only “things to do” but also, I use them for organizing the chapters of my book(s). What items do you use for organizing in your writing business?

Tampa Bay Books Spotlights Dr Noelle Sterne, author of ‘Trust Your Life’

Download PDF

Tampa Bay Books interview with author, Dr. Noelle Sterne, author of ‘Trust Your Life’.

Trust your Life book cover
Please share about your career background.
My dreamed-of career has been writing for as long as I can remember. At the same time, I became an academic—hardly a breath between getting the undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral degrees, and then teaching on the college level. To have more writing time and because I kept nodding out at the English Department committee meetings, I became gracefully fired. Then I established a dissertation typing business near Columbia University, my alma mater. Because I had trouble controlling my brain, I soon started commenting on clients’ dissertation productions. They began to ask me questions and for advice as well.

Eventually, the typing blossomed (or deteriorated, depending on your point of view) into dissertation coaching and consulting. I have been engaged in this work for over 28 years, now with doctoral candidates nationwide and worldwide. It is very satisfying to see clients master scholarship, advance in their professions, and grow in their personal sense of self-worth and self-respect.

What inspired you to write this book, Trust Your Life?
Two things. First was the clients in my coaching and editing practice assisting adults who return to universities for dreamed-of graduate degrees. No matter how impressive their accomplishments and titles, they often moaned that they’d made mistakes in life choices (“I waited too long to enroll in graduate school!”) and feared they’d never finish (“I’ve lost my brain-power!”). They lamented about lost time, feared they would never finish, and voiced destructive perspectives that impeded their progress. The academic could hardly be separated from the personal and emotional. I wanted to help them more see the “progression” of their lives and how none of their experiences was wasted (this is a major premise of Trust Your Life).

The second source of inspiration was my quest of my own dream. Like clients, I was battling the same doubts and fears about deserving to reach my dream—writing my own work. Writing about achieving one’s dream was what I needed to learn too.

When did you begin your writing journey?
In the likely apocryphal story my mother loved to repeat, I stood up in the crib at 4 months old crying not “Momma, Momma” but “Book-a! Book-a!” I don’t remember this.

Other than this, like so many other writers, I started early. I still have, from my productions at about age 10, crumbling black three-ringed notebooks filled with lined pages of painstaking handwritten poems and stories. These notebooks proliferated, graduated to file folders, and now to magically stored computer files with gigantic gigabyte capacity. I have been writing ever since.

Please share about your latest book, Trust Your Life.
The title capsulates what so many of us feel about our lives. I persisted in not forgiving myself for past decisions—such as earning my own doctorate instead of plunging into creative writing. The title reflects the connection between trusting one’s choices, wherever they have led, and not judging them as misguided, wrong, or blatantly stupid.

The second part of the title also tells readers that it’s acceptable—no, necessary—to honor our inner guidance and secret dreams. And I am pleased that both titles are imperatives or, if you will, affirmations.

What are some takeaways you would like your reader to get from reading your book?
In addition to the title-mantra, I discuss three specific principles for readers to take away to bolster and shore them up in going after their own dreams:
a. There are no mistakes. Even if it does not feel like it, your life experiences prepared you perfectly for where you are now. Nothing was wasted.
b. You can reframe your past. Instead of branding your past experiences as negative or wasted, you can view them as inevitable steps toward the future you want to create.
c. The outer reflects the inner. Your experiences result from your thoughts and feelings. You can name, visualize, expect, and experience your God-planted greatest desires.

With this foundation, and many explanations, anecdotes, steps, and examples, I show readers how to go about reaching their Dreams.

What is your advice to beginning writers?
Keep the above words in mind. But start small—with an essay, a story. If your dream is a novel, start with a paragraph on the plot and how the main character(s) learned and grew. Then, start with a single chapter, and it doesn’t have to be the first.
Above all, as I’m sure you’ve often heard, write regularly. If it is not daily, decide on another regular schedule. Make it as regular as any other daily habit you do for physical health. Writing is for your mental, emotional, spiritual, and creative health.

What is the best advice you have received about writing?
The advice is a composite of many other writers’ wisdom as well as my own discoveries. Write because you need to and cannot imagine life without it. Write because you must. Write for yourself. Write what is in your heart, and later think about markets.
The more you delve and explore your own heart, the more you will touch others.

What was your biggest challenge in writing this book?

Completing it. I’d written almost exclusively essays and stories. It was my first long work (I have another nonfiction manuscript in an old file but never finished it). I was scared. But I followed the advice of devoting regular time to it. And I had the incredible revelation that a book is only a series of essays. So I divided it into these “essays” and took one at a time to completion.

What has been your greatest reward in writing this book?
It has been very rewarding to read the praise for the book, to receive invitations to speak, and to publish excerpts. But my greatest reward has been seeing people’s responses to the ancient New-Age teachings of the book as these teachings become more accepted in the mainstream.

Most writers are readers. What books are on your “to-read” list?
I don’t read for fun or escape (that’s reserved for TV mysteries) but for nourishment and knowledge. The books I read and are stacked up to read are (a) spiritual self help (two by Abraham-Hicks), (b) writing craft (The Art of War for Writers by James Scott Bell, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron—for the third time), and (c) scholarly (can’t shake my training)—I am fascinated by early Christianity (The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels, The Ministry and Message of Paul by Richard Longenecker).

What are you working on now?
Reminding myself of all the positive buttresses that helped me complete Trust Your Life, I am now working on a book more directly based on my academic coaching practice. This book helps doctoral students complete their dissertations, the last and possibly most agonizing hurdle of an advanced degree. However, this is not a usual handbook—plenty of those are in print. My book addresses students’ largely overlooked but equally important nonacademic difficulties and is possibly the first to do so in depth. The title: Challenges in Writing Your Dissertation: Coping With the Emotional, Interpersonal, and Spiritual Struggles.

I am working on a sequel to Trust Your Life: Competition Therapy: Conquer Your Envy of Others Who Are Where You Think You Should Be. Spiritually based, this book attacks the notion that if you’ve got it, I can’t get it. Other works are perpetually in progress and stages of publication, including articles on spiritual and writing craft topics, personal essays, and several novels in various stages of sprouting.

Where can readers find out more about you and your book?
Readers are invited to visit my website, http://www.trustyourlifenow.com, on which they can read an excerpt from the book and other works. Trust Your Life in paperback and ebook is available on Amazon and other sites.

My webinar presentation on the book can be accessed on YouTube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95EeqllONIQ&feature=youtu.be

A chapter titled “Send Love Ahead” will be published in the forthcoming book (August 2014) Transform Your Life! http://transformation-publishing.com/ book/transform-your-life/

Essays appear on the Writer’s Digest blogs. www.writersdigest.com
My contributions to Author Magazine are available at the “Authors’ Blog.” http://www.authormagazine.org/

Anything you would like to add?
Yes. Thank you, Teresa, for this opportunity to share my work and outlook with your readers. To continue to spread the message of Trust Your Life, I want readers to know they are in control of their lives and have the power to build their lives as they wish.

Time Management & Organization for Writers Workshop

Download PDF

'WRITING' in letters / writing on square tiles - Education, Scho
Hey fellow writers:

Just wanted to let you know that I’ve slated another Time Management for Writers workshop at the end of April.

WHERE:Largo Library – 120 Central Park Drive, Largo, FL
DATE: Wednesday May 13, 2015
TIME: 6:00pm-7:30pm
COST: $35.00

Register NOW!

In this workshop you will:
*Reveal the things that sabotage your time
*Discover how to find time to write
*Learn to create a time management system that works for you
*Seek out how perfectionism messes with your time
*Find out some new organizational tools to save you
time with your writing
and much more!

I’m ready to manage my time better to get my message out to the world!


Tuesday Minute Tip by The Author’s Cheerleader: Using Google Alerts

Download PDF

The Author’s Cheerleader Tuesday Minute Book Marketing Tip

With any business (and YES! writing is a business), you will want to have your “pulse” on what’s going on in the industry you are in. For writers, that could be writers in your local area, events happening in your local area, publishing or writing opportunities.

One of the easiest ways to have this type of information to “come to you” is by setting up Google Alerts (or updates/reminders) to your email account (gmail) through your Google account.

Why set up a Google Account?
1) It’s FREE
2) You can forward your other email accounts to your gmail account
3) You can set up Google Alerts
4) There are other extra helpful tools (like Google Documents)
5) Connects to your Google+ account AND YouTube

Listen here a bit more about Google Alerts from The Author’s Cheerleader


Celebrate YOU! Self Love & Self Care Workshop

Download PDF

heart in sand
SELF LOVE & SELF CARE to CELEBRATE YOU! Workshop at Serenity Now Books & Gifts
I am thrilled to have the opportunity to bring this workshop to others. I believe that both self love and self care were pivotal in my life to gain more awareness.

Self love allowed me to understand, recognize and embrace love that was within me WHICH in turn, gave me the where with all to understand, recognize and embrace love that has been given to me.

Self care showed me that I am important and if I don’t take the time to take care of myself, I am not able to be there fully for those I love in my life.

The Celebrate You! Self Love & Self Care workshop is going be held at:
May 16th 1:00-3:00pm
Serenity Now Books & Gifts
3269 Tampa Road
Palm Harbor, FL
CALL 787-5400 to reserve your spot!

If you’re ready to celebrate you!
Call Serenity Now at 727-787-5400 to reserve your spot!

Grief, Loss and Change – Guest Post by Colleen Jais

Download PDF

Grief, Loss and Change by Colleen Jais
I don’t react well to the word grief. I think because it implies pain and suffering, something bad, unhappy—the opposite of joy. I actually hate this word. I know it too intimately.

But grief is a crucial part of being human and it is not just about physical death, but it is also about loss or change in any aspect of life that we emotionally feel devastated by. There is grief over a failed marriage; grief over the separation from an estranged family member or friend; grief over the loss of a home or grief over a lifestyle ended due to bankruptcy.

I had a conversation the other day with a friend who told me that for the past 10 years she put everything into her house—all of her money, emotions, care and love. Her home symbolized HER and her success, aspirations and dreams come true. And then when she had to face the financial reality that she was losing the house, it devastated her. Completely. She said when she saw the realtor’s lock box on her front door; she broke down and couldn’t stop crying for a very, very long time. She was grieving for her old life, symbolized by that house, which was now gone.

I think for a long time I wore grief like a cloak; it’s all encompassing folds and nooks and crannies were easy to hide in. It shielded me from everyone and everything. I could blame everything on grief to avoid dealing with any other issues. When I started to “see” the grief I held around me as a coat that could be lifted off, it was scary because I was no longer sure what was under that coat. What brokenness would be revealed? Was there anything left of the me I use to be? The questions were almost as painful as the grief itself. Maybe I didn’t want to know anymore.

That grief cloak was heavy, and I had needed it to make me feel safe and secure. I started to trust my grief cloak and want to keep it on. However, it wasn’t serving me well anymore—I was not handling things in my life with the same conviction I once had. So I began to step out from under grief, very slowly, tentatively and fearfully. It was not pleasant, but with that heavy mantle lifted I felt a little lighter, and strangely, I began to remember things, good things. Grief had selectively numbed and “erased” memories, to shield me from pain; but at the same time, grief had erased good memories and aspects of joy too.

I respect grief. I don’t like it, but I know it’s not just there to remind me of what’s gone—I know it can save a life.

Like my friend who lost her home, her status, there is a part of us that we must let go of during grief; not just letting go of the object or person we are grieving for, letting go of a part of who or what we once were. Then you will find “space” in you that is expansive—with love, with creativity, with knowledge and yes, with endless possibility.

Teresa’s Note: I wanted to thank Colleen for being on Inspiration Nation Radio —hear the interview on BlogTalkRadio

colleen 2About Colleen:
Colleen Jais, author of Into the Slipstream: A Guide to Finding Inspiration through Grief, Loss and Change. For Colleen life is in fact a study of transition; life itself becoming her resume. An artist living in the real world, Colleen has always worn many hats to fulfill the practical, yet taciturn nature of the journey of daily life and all of its evolutions. A writer, an artist, a mother, a daughter, a sister, business owner, an entrepreneur, whose passage through these transitions is the fabric of her being. Colleen shows that each ‘change’ along the way is an extension of her ability to assimilate and then access the wisdom born of life experience. This capacity level or the ‘war chest of experience’ has guided Colleen through life from small town girl to a well-traveled capable soul, ready to guide others through the twists and turns of living their journey.

Her book:
Into the Slipstream: A Guide to Finding Inspiration through Grief, Loss, and Change is a book for anyone who has found themselves at the edge of their capacity to handle life’s inevitable challenges. Through her personal struggles with grief and loss, Colleen found her way to healing and hope. In this touching and empowering book, she shares the wisdom and tools that it takes to thrive through life’s transitions and enter The Slipstream.

I’ve Been Reading – You Can Become the Person You Want to Be by Robert H Schuller

Download PDF

I’ve Been Reading – ‘You Can Become the Person You Want to Be’ by Robert H Schuller

As a writer, I am an avid reader. I believe I share this trait with many of my fellow writers and authors from around the world. And as a person whose mantra is “Sharing inspiration through the world of words”, this is another way I get to continue in my journey of connecting the world of words with you.

I was introduced to Robert H.Schueller in a local book store Haslam’s. Robert H. Schuller is a author of 37 books,six of which were on the NY Times and Publishers Weekly best sellers lists. Some of the include Tough Times Never Last but Tough People Do (1983), Thomas Nelson (ISBN 978-0-8407-5287-1), The Be-Happy Attitudes, and Living Positively One Day at a Time.

One of the books I found and read is “You can Become the Person You Want to Be

Here’s a few points in the book that stuck out to me:

Consider your possibilities – It states, “Do not consider the resources you have on hand. Consider the resources that are available in the world! Because you do not have the time, talent, money, brains, skill, energy or organization is NO excuse for not trying if your cause is right!

Teresa’s Tidbit: I hear two things here in this statement. 1) Many times we allow ourselves to become short sighted as to what our resources are…however, if we consider the resources available in the WORLD, not just in our own network, boy, doesn’t that open the door to more possibilities. YES! 2) Just because you (or I) may not possess all the things (time, energy, money, skill, etc) in order to get something done, it doesn’t mean we can’t TRY to get there. It just means we may need to re-think the how we may get it done.

Creativity is related to deep relaxation – Schuller states, “The very word “work” generates pressure-producing tension. Work means responsibility. This implies accountability, which in turn produces sub-conscious creative blocking tension. The word “game” suggests freedom from responsibility which implies exciting race running, and risk taking (within boundaries that are quite safe). “…Consider a mind-set that results from the “game attitude”.

Teresa’s Tidbit:
First, I have to say I love the first line, “creativity is related to deep relaxation”. I know for me when I’m writing, I am in the element and it just makes my heart sing. Even as I’m typing this blog post, I’ve got Pandora on my computer, jamming to tunes from the 1990’s, 2000’s and feeling so blissful! I do agree about what Schuller implies by not allowing the want to get our purpose out to the world become a tension creating task but rather coming from a place of freedom and joyfulness. However, I do feel that with our purpose comes some bit of responsibility but it’ wrapped in the intention of love and kindness.

Turn Fear from a Negative into a Positive ForceHe states, “Make your fears work for you—not against you.”
Here’s a few affirmations or statements about fear you can use:
“Fear not that you might fail…fear rather that you will never succeed”
“Fear not that you might be hurt…fear rather that you will never grow”.
“Fear not that you might love or lose…fear rather that you might never love at all.”

Teresa’s Tidbit Fear has been one of my greatest teachers over the past few years. And each time I meet my fear instead of running away from it, I not only learn something new about myself, I grow deeper in my own knowing of who I am. One of my recent expressions of this was when I attended a burlesque (yes, I wrote BURLESQUE) dance class. I hadn’t taken any type of dance or workout class in many years. As I sat in my car before the class my ego was screaming at me, “are you really going to try and do this?” “you are going to make a fool of yourself in front of these other ladies who are probably skinnier and in better shape than you!”. I acknowledged my fear and my ego and went into the class. You know what, I had a great time! I didn’t allow my fear to be a part of something I wanted to do stop me from doing it. And from this class, I was able to meet some lovely ladies and burned some calories while learning some pretty awesome dance moves! WHOOHOO!

I appreciate the works of Robert H. Schuller for his positive outlook in a world that can shift our mindset to become fear based and creating negative beliefs that keep us from showcasing our universal purpose in the world.

How are you choosing to become the person you want to be? I’d love to hear from you.

A Greater You: Living a Connected Life with Trinda Latherow

Download PDF


A Greater You: Living a Connected Life – Guest post by Trinda Latherow

A greater you is indeed possible when you make those vital connections to self, others, and a greater power and presence. When you connect to your higher self and strive to live in the highest of virtues or that of wisdom
and love. When you connect to others in right and meaningful ways. When you begin to live aright or with right thoughts, right words, and right deeds. When you pray for each, speak with a kinder but truer tongue, and act for
the betterment of all. When you connect with a greater power and presence or that which man calls God, Creator, Source, Spirit, or the One of all. When you earnestly seek to know God or to form a closer connection with that from whence you came. When you long to know the truth to your being or more of who you really are and why you are here. It is then that a chain reaction occurs and a greater you comes about from living a connected life. From
first making those vital connections to self – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. To others through right thoughts, words, and deeds. To a greater power and presence that flows through and around every
living thing, the true essence of each.

By connecting to our higher self or true self, we realize that we are more than just the body or human persona. We see the greatness within or the part of us that connects to something greater than flesh and bone alone. We come to recognize the spirit within, that which is part of an even greater Spirit. We begin to understand that the essence of us is that which animates the body sacred. It is that which is still in a state of becoming or evolution through all of our soul’s experiences, including those here with others.

By connecting to others or those with whom we will come to meet and make a connection throughout our life, we begin to see a reflection of self. We see the same needs and desires in others. We see more of our similarities than differences and begin to live together more in wisdom and love. For we learn and grow the most when once we meet and make a closer connection with others.

By connecting to a greater power and presence, we realize our divine ancestry. We begin to recognize our inherent gifts or innate abilities. We see the same spark of greatness within each. We remember that we are part of a divine mind in a sacred body with eternal soul. How splendid is that, and we know it not from faith alone, but from all of our experiences while living a connected life. Connected to our higher self or from living in the highest of virtues. Connected to others or from living aright and connected to a greater power and presence or from living in a closer relationship with God, Creator, Source, Spirit, or the One of all.

To live a greater life or one that is happier, healthier, and wealthier or more abundant and fulfilling, we must first make those vital connections to self, others, and a greater power and presence. We must remember to connect with our higher self and come to live in the highest of virtues or that of wisdom and love. We must remember to connect with others in right and meaningful ways. See the same needs and desires in others. We must remember to connect with a greater power and presence. See our interconnectedness to everyone and everything, but especially the One of all.

Yet, to make real and lasting changes for the better, we must first heal and transform all the parts of self – the mind, body, heart, and soul of us. Remember the greatness within and live in a greater awareness of self and life. Connect with our higher self, knowing that we are more than merely flesh and bone alone. Use our inherent gifts and infinite source of creativity, knowing that we connect to something that is all-knowing and all-powerful. Forgive those trespasses upon self and others. Connect with others in right and meaningful ways, knowing it is only in service to others that we discover our own value and worth. Connect with something greater to see the infinite possibilities to our being. Know more of who we truly are and where we came from, but more importantly, why we are here among so many others. Live more in wisdom and love or practice living aright with right thoughts, words, and deeds. Perfect all the parts of self through our shared experiences and countless lessons for the learning.

To meet and make a connection with our higher self, others, and a greater power and presence is to live this life to the fullest by first healing on multiple levels. Begin today by embracing those spiritual practices that allow you to know more of who you really are and why you are here, which is to learn how to live more in wisdom and love. Allow your higher self or your true self to live in this world. Connect with others to learn of the same needs and desires in each. Connect with your spiritual support system of teachers, guides, angels and loved ones. Remember, you are never alone in this life, never. Even if you have no one physically beside you here, know that you have those in spirit who are always near, comforting you, supporting you, and guiding you throughout your journey here. You need only live a connected life, become a more mindful co-creator in this shared world, and then simply give thanks to the divine essence that flows through and around every living thing. A greater you is indeed possible, if you but first make those vital connections to your true self, the real heart and soul of others, and an even greater power and presence.

A Greater You: Living a Connected Life is a collection of life stories and inspirational writings that address our vital connections. It reminds us that we can be even greater than we ever thought we could be by making those vital connections to our higher self, to others, and to a greater power and presence. We can be happier, healthier, and truly wealthier once we realize who we really are and why we are here. We can be greater – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually by living a connected life. A Greater You: Living a Connected Life by Trinda Latherow is available both in print or digital formats. To get your copy, simply select from the links below or visit www.Trinda.net for more on how you can be an even greater you!

If you missed interview, you can listen to it here. Interview on Inspiration Nation with Teresa Morrow.

Trinda-Latherow-2013-cAbout Trinda:

After the birth of her daughter and soon after death of her mother, Trinda stepped upon a path of mysteries and miracles alike in a quest for the answers to some of life’s biggest questions. Asking, “Who are we and where did we come from, but more importantly, why are we here?” Along the way, she met world renowned psychics, scientists, spiritual leaders, doctors, authors, artists, and gifted laypeople who each held some valuable piece of the puzzle to our existence. She has been writing and speaking of her unique experiences ever since.

Previously addressing the mind and body as a safety and health professional, Trinda is now focusing on the mind, body, and spirit of us as an author, speaker, and consultant. Please visit her blog, Meet and Make a Connection to learn more about Trinda, her work, and all those she continues to meet, as well as how making the mind, body, spirit connection can help us to live our best life yet!

“>FREE e-Book

Writing & Book Marketing Tips from Around the Web – Publishing, PR and Grammar

Download PDF

During this post, I want to bring to you a set of websites, videos, or blogs that I found around the web on the topics of writing and/or book marketing.

'WRITING' in letters / writing on square tiles - Education, SchoHere are the selections for this week:

1) The first one is a video about myths you may have heard regarding publishing a book. He shares about traditional publishing vs. self publishing. Although you may get more branding recognition through a traditional publisher, you will probably have to wait longer to get your book published. And if authors such as Mark Victor Hansen and Jack Canfield select self publishing, perhaps it is a good route for you too. Check out the rest of the tips for 7 Mistakes in Publishing a Book

2) The next tips (or shall I say tips) is from Lisa Orell (PromoteUGuru.com). When trying to promote yourself, you need to allow people to know what you are doing. People can’t support, engage or purchase from you, if they don’t know what you are doing. One of the tips Lisa mentioned was about the reason to market yourself through your blog, website, social media or via press releases, is to position yourself as an expert in your industry. Listen to the Tips to Get Mass Media Exposure

3) You have some favorite authors? Of course you do. I do too! And one of my favorites are one the top 10 list of best selling authors—Janet Evanovich (the Stephanie Plum series). Katherine Heigel played Stephanie Plum in a movie version of One for the Money (title of the first in the book series by Janet Evanovich). Check out who are the other nine authors on the list offamous Authors – Can you guess who is the number one best selling author

4) Now, Kathleen Gage is stating something I hear from aspiring writers and authors too often than not too. The believe is that by going with a traditional publisher means the publisher will do the marketing for you. NOT! Even if you publish with a traditional publisher, you, the author, will need and be responsible for doing most if not all of the marketing for your book. Listen to the 3 Myths in Marketing Your Book

5) The last tips is on grammar and how to use a semicolon. One of the proper ways to use a semicolon is that if you have two independent clauses that could stand each as a sentence, you can place a semicolon in between them.
Read examples and other tips on how to use a Semicolon

What marketing or writing tips do you have to share?


The Author’s Cheerleader Tuesday Minute Marketing Tip – Hosting Your Own Radio show or Podcast

Download PDF

Tuesday Minute Marketing Tip from The Author’s Cheerleader

One of the ways you can promote your work or the subject matter of your book is to host your own internet radio show and/ or podcast.

These days with the availability of different technology, we are given a variety of opportunities to share our message like being a radio show host with such platforms as Blog Talk Radio, VoiceAmerica or PodBean.

In this Tuesday Minute Tip, I share with you about adding a radio show as an additional promotional or marketing tool for your business, writing and/or event.

Here is the tip of the week:

You can either do a live show where you can allow callers to join in the conversation live on air. Another option is to pre-record the show and then have your show air at a time you prefer.

Also, you can have the show where you have guests that you interview or your show can be a place where you offer your guidance and expertise to the listeners.

A few tips if you are thinking this might be something for you:
1) Check out some shows online at Blog Talk Radio, Voice America, or PodBean.
2) Think about the format and information you would want to share on your show.
3) Be sure you have the time to dedicate to this venture. It takes additional time to schedule guests and market the show, not to mention the time to do the show itself.

Do you have a show yourself? Please share. What are your tips for others who may be thinking about starting a show? What are some of your favorite online radio talk shows or podcasts?

Deeper Happiness: Four Keys to Getting There by Maura Sweeney

Download PDF

Happiness concept.
“Happiness, true happiness, is an inner quality. It is a state of mind. If your mind is at peace, you are happy. If your mind is at peace, but you have nothing else, you can be happy. If you have everything the world can give – pleasure, possessions, power – but lack peace of mind, you can never be happy.” ~ Dada Vaswani*

Is there “more” to happiness? When it comes to being happy, is there something beyond the momentary, superficial emotion that we can hope for and attain?

I was recently asked this question during an author interview on BlogTalkRadio’s Inspiration Nation.

Host Teresa Morrow wanted to know how to feel happy when facing tough times and life challenges.

Having spent a lifetime pursuing the *Art of Happiness*

I was delighted – or should I say happy – to respond to this critical question.

When life doesn’t deliver its best, here are a few keys to experience a deeper and more meaningful level of happiness:

*1. See yourself as a beneficiary rather than a victim *

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t — you’re right.” ~Henry Ford*

Despite the nearly infinite number of circumstances we can encounter in life, there remain, ultimately, just two lenses through which we choose to view ourselves: victim or beneficiary. Personal experience becomes a
reflection of that internal belief.

If we choose to see ourselves as victims, our experience will prove us correct. But if we choose to see ourselves as beneficiaries, then experience will ultimately deliver us pleasant miracles and unexpected gifts.

*2. Make the choice for happiness and repeat as often as is necessary*

*“Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” * ~ Abraham Lincoln

Sooner or later, we all encounter a loss, death, disappointment or separation. What we choose to do about these encounters determines their impact on our life. There’s a time to grieve, but arising from our low place involves an active choice.

The mind needs continual training and “reminding” to move from one view of reality to another. Keep choosing happiness – over and over again – until the mind is retrained and responds accordingly.

*3. Find happiness internally rather than pursuing it in outward circumstances*

*”Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.”* ~ Denis Waitley*

If you’ve ever sought hard for something to buy, gain, acquire or attain, you’ll admit that the high doesn’t last very long. Those of us who insist on finding happiness on externals are setting ourselves up for anxiety and
emotional instability. We’re happy one moment when things go our way, we’re disappointed or crushed when things go awry in the next.

To experience the “more” of happiness, keep your mind focused on values and attributes that are positively endowed – like goodness, peace and joy. You emotional roller coaster will eventually be replaced with the gentle wave
of a deep river from within.

*4. Trust in the wisdom of time *

“Wisdom is justified by her children.” ~ Jesus Christ

When we hurt, we want immediate answers. We demand explanations for our losses, failed desires and crushed dreams. This is where the happiness rubber meets the proverbial lifetime road. By suspending our own perspective and the narrow scope through which we view current circumstances, we can begin to trust in the longer and broader picture of a grander scheme. This is often the place where our surrender to a wiser Source becomes our anchor and our trust.

Time may be delayed, but grace, wisdom, compassion and other unexpected bounties can ultimately be gleaned as our eyes look toward a greater plan than the one we presently see.

Learning to trust in the wisdom of time brings us full circle. When confronted with life challenges, we must always ask ourselves the foundational question: *Am I a victim or a beneficiary?*

The answer we choose ultimately delivers itself back upon our belief.

May the heart of happiness be an ever-dawning place of peace, refuge and joy for you – in the good times and the in-between times too! ~ Maura Sweeney

Maura4u brand image in frameMaura Sweeney*
*Podcaster, Blogger, Author*
“Living Happy – Inside Out”
Connect with me at Maura4u.com

Find me on iTunes
& Stitcher

Follow me on Huffington Post ,
Facebook & Twitter

So how do you get a deeper level of happiness for yourself? Please share here.

Writing & Book Marketing Tips from Around the Web

Download PDF

books sign

Book Marketing & Writing Tips from Around the Web

  • Questionnaires for Character Profiles
  • Are you writing a fiction book? If so, take a look at these cool interesting questionnaires for writing profiles for your characters. I have also found doing this is good to boost your writing nonfiction too! Creative Writing – Questionnaires for Writing Character Profiles

  • Need some extra motivation in your writing?
  • Check out this video by mogul Anthony Robbins to get your writing back on track. Motivate your Writing – Anthony Robbins Motivates you in 20 min

  • Want or need some rules for writing?
  • Here are a few from Neil Gaiman’s 8 rules from writing.
    A few rules I like:
    #6 Fix it. Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to write the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.
    #8 The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.)

  • Blogging by Michael Hyatt, author of Platform, Get Noticed
  • One of the first things he shares is about never giving up. I couldn’t agree more. Most of the time people want to give up just when they are on the brink of showcasing their own essence. He shares a video on Blog Tips for Building a Bigger Audience with Michael Hyatt

  • Write to Sell Your Book
  • Here’s a bit of advice by Diane O’Connell
    “Find opening lines you love and mimic the approach, sentence structure and tone, using your own story. Don’t be afraid to take risks with creative writing. Experiment, and don’t despair if you end up with a dozen opening lines you can’t select one from; the opening line is often the line most changed in a novel.” Here are her 3 Ways to a Killer Opening Line

    Inspiration Nation invites Kellie R. Stone – author of “The Butterfly Payoff”

    Download PDF

    Kellie R. Stone offers her insights on purpose and doing the work on Inspiration Nation with host, Teresa Morrow

    11004963_10152695966662469_1156691208_nIn Kellie’s quest to guide women on their journey of self-discovery, she is an avid student of life. This Life-Purpose Visionary, Inner Journey Strategist, and Intuitive Energy Healer received her coaching certification through renowned spiritual life and business coach, Karen Coffey and her attunement through Reiki Master, Christine McKenna-Eartheart. You’ll discover Kellie’s published articles on her women’s global community, Womenslifelink.com and on Livestrong.com, Allthingschic.com, awakeningthegoddesswithin.net, Coffeytalk.com, Goddesslifestyleplan.com and many other blogs.

    Her published books include, The Butterfly Payoff: A Woman’s Guide to Defining Her Purpose, Fulfilling Her Dreams, and Getting Paid for It, and Are You Out of Your Freakin’ Mind: Break Mental Barriers and Live from Your Sacred Creative Space. She is also the co-author of the International Best Seller, Success In Beauty: Secrets to Effortless Fulfillment and Happiness.

    11001134_10152695967042469_1695795596_oAbout The Butterfly Payoff
    It’s never too late to live a magical life filled with Purpose, Dreams, and Abundance! Kellie R. Stone takes you on a journey to define your deepest passions and sacred purpose. Each page of The Butterfly Payoff brings you hope, confidence, and simple action steps to claim your truth and authentic place in the world. Quickly discover how to effectively conquer fear and non-serving mental habits while building a tower to your dreams.

    In cased you missed the show, listen to it here, Inspiration Nation Radio with Kellie R Stone

    I’ve Been Reading – Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck

    Download PDF

    Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck

    For this book, the subtitle is “Claiming the life you were meant to live”. Some how, I think we are often feeling like we aren’t living the life we are meant to live. We get stuck in the day to day things and are led to believe that “this is just how is supposed to be” instead of knowing that we can live the life we are mean to life. In her book, Beck, shows us a map to a more fulfilled life.

    Here are a few things I enjoyed from the book:

    • In the first chapter Beck talks about the disconnected self. She shows a chart that has a column for “ behaviors of your social self” and “behaviors for your essential self”. Under the behaviors of the social self there are words like conforming, avoidance-based, predictable and planned. Under the behaviors of the essential self the words shown are; unique, inventive, playful and spontaneous.

    Teresa’s Tidbit – Sometimes for me it doesn’t take much to give me an AHA! Moment. Do you (I know at times I do) want to remember to be more playful and inventive instead of feeling as if I have to be conforming and predictable. I encourage you (and I’m telling myself this) to include fun in your work and showcase your inventive side more.

    • In a chapter called, Just Because You’re Paranoid, author Beck has a section titled The Truth is Out There. She shares that she met Chris Burke’s mom (Chris is the actor who played on Life Goes On) and who has Down’s Syndrome. When they were having lunch Beck asked Chris’ mom did she ever dream that Chris would be a famous TV star when she heard from the doctors of his condition. Chris’ mom replied, “of course. Why Not?” Beck goes onto to say she sees her clients the same way Chris’ mom has always seen him—through and with her essential self. Beck states, “The more you integrate your essential self, the more you will perceive both yourself and others in this way.”

    Teresa’s Tidbit – I think this is a great reminder to interact with each other as our essential self (I like to call it our authentic self). When we can do this, we allow ourselves to view others in the same light, without all the unnecessary labels we tend to carry with us. Too many times we even do show our essential selves afraid of rejection but when we live from our essential selves we attract those will help encourage and support us to live our best life.

    • Martha Beck offers a piece called The Change Cycle in the chapter titled, The Map of Change. She discovered all business and organizations (and people) go through these phases when they come up against a major transition. The Change Cycle has four different squares—Death & Rebirth, Dreaming & Scheming, The Hero’s Saga and The Promised Land.

    Teresa’s Tidbit – The Change Cycle reminds me of the stages of grief a bit. With the first stage, when things change in your life, you have lost someone or something important (death) and now you are starting new (rebirth). You think you can make it (dreaming) and try to force yourself to be okay with the change (scheming). Then you come to realize you don’t need to force a new life, you have to accept the change and move with it (the Hero’s Saga). You begin to learn from the change that has happened in your life and find a new way of living not forgetting the loss but accepting it (The Promised Land).

    You can get your own copy of Finding your Own North Star on Amazon (affiliate link) –

    Inspiration Nation Radio invites Linda Burhans, author of ‘Good Night and God Bless’

    Download PDF

    Cargiving Advocate Linda Burhans join Inspiration Nation Host Teresa Morrow
    It has been said that in our life, we will either be a caregiver, know someone who is a caregiver and/or will be cared for by one of our loved ones.

    LindaheadshotLinda Burhans is a national speaker on Caregiver Advocacy and the author Good Night and God Bless, a heartfelt story about the joy and challenges about caring for a parent.

    As an expert in Caregiver Advocacy, Linda has facilitated over 600 support groups and workshops for caregivers. She shares lessons learned and coping tools with thousands of caregivers who attend her events or read her work. Her weekly blogs provide expert guidance on resources and best practices for caregivers all over the United States.

    Book-Cover[1]In her book, Good Night and God Bless, Linda welcomes readers to join her on her emotional, rewarding, and sometimes frustrating journey as caregiver to her beloved mother, Jo McCauley, during the final 18 months of her life. The book offers inspirational messages of unconditional love, loss, joy, sorrow, and a healthy dose of humor for those caring for aging parents.During this interview, Linda Burhans and Teresa Morrow discuss the subjects of caregiving, healing and grieving and her book, Good Night and God Bless on Feb 11, 2015 at 10am ET.

    You can listen to the interview here on Blog Talk Radio.

    Do you have a story to share about caregiving, being a caregiver or have a question about caregiving? Please share.

    Choosing Happiness in Life: Some of My Answers

    Download PDF

    Hey there friends! I’m excited to be just one of the Happiness Crusaders to bring the message of HAPPINESS and #ChoosingHappiness to women around the world along with over 100 awesome women from around the world.

    In today’s post I share how I chose happiness in the midst of life’s messiness by answering a few questions from my inspiring friend best-selling Publisher Linda Joy. Today is the official release of her new book, Inspiration for a Woman’s Soul: Choosing Happiness featuring the soul-inspiring stories of 27 amazing women who share their intimate stories of transformation. Choosing Happiness also includes Reflection Questions after each story which will empower you to integrate the vital lessons of each woman’s journey into your own life. For a limited time you can get over 40 transformational gifts with your copy of Choosing Happiness. Grab your copy today of Inspiration for a Woman’s Soul.

    Q: Was there a pivotal moment in your life when you realized that your happiness was an internal choice that could be made despite your outside circumstances?
    Yes, when I was dating my boyfriend (now my husband) but we were having issues and I couldn’t figure out why I was feeling the same way in this relationship that I had in past relationships. I went on a journey of self discovering and realized that I wasn’t allowing myself to be authentic which in turn made me unhappy. Once I realized that my happiness came from within first, I came to love myself and then I could allow love, recognize love, give love and accept love in a pure way than I had never done before.

    Q: How do you remind yourself that happiness is always within and catch your footing in those whirlwind moments of life that can throw us off balance? When life throws me curve balls, I remind myself of my happiness by 1) remembering happiness is a choice 2) start with gratitude and 3) embrace the blessings I already have in my life

    Q: What is your personal definition of happiness today?
    Happiness is remembering that love is the center. Remembering that my purpose is to spread inspiration and choosing to share that purpose with those around me in the most authentic genuine way only Teresa can.

    Q. Share three things that bring you happiness.
    Only limiting it to three things will be very difficult for me because I can find happiness in so many things from the world. I’ll try.
    1) The love from my husband, daughter, parents, sister and brother (and my dog Louie).
    2) The support from the awesome friends I have that have been there for me through good and not so good parts of my life.
    3) The work that I do with fellow authors and writers to help them bring their inspirational messages to the world.

    Thanks to my friend, Publisher Linda Joy, for these inspiring questions! Please share your answers on how you choose happiness in the comments below.

    Be sure to check out Linda’s new book, Inspiration for a Woman’s Soul: Choosing Happiness and grab your copy today at http://bit.ly/Happiness_Book to receive the bonus gift bundle worth thousands!


    The Author’s Cheerleader Tuesday Minute Book Marketing Tip : Use Local Community

    Download PDF

    Dear Author’s & Writers:

    I can’t believe that it’s only in my local community, however, there are several opportunities to join in, be a part of, collaborate with other businesses, people, organizations or events that are aligned with the message of local authors and writers. palmtree dreamstime

    The purpose of our writing is to bring out the message, right? Well, being involved in local community events allows you more exposure to spread that message with more people.

    This week on The Author’s Cheerleader Tuesday Minute Book Marketing Tip I emphasis this point.

    Here are a few ways to find out where there are going on that you may be able to get involved in:
    1) Search on Facebook for local events. You can do this by going to the search box on FB and then typing the city that you live in. Most of the time, you will get a list of people, organizations or events that are happening in your area. For instance: Just this past week St. Petersburg had an event called Localtopia which featured local family and/or run businesses. To join in the event, they had local artists, bands, chefs AND even a booth of local WRITERS and AUTHORS!!
    Take the time to do some research to find out about these events. But the rewards in finding one event that you wish to be a part of can be a great addition to your marketing arsenal not to mention the wonderful new connections with people that you will met in your community.

    2) Pick up and read local magazines, newsletters, or newspapers to find out about the events going on in your area. Sometimes, you may not see or catch it online, you may find it in a local paper of some kind. If you are at a library, grocery store, community center or gym, check out to see what free magazines or newspapers that are on the stands.
    Scan through to see if there may be an event that you may wish to attend. Or a person that you may wish to connect with at an event. You never know who or where you may find a lasting connection, friendship or reader. The important part to remember is to allow it to be authentically driven. Not promotional driven. You want to be a part of something that is aligned with your heart spirit.

    3) You may have an idea for an event (and it doesn’t have to be big). Your event idea can be a book signing or book fair with some a few local author friends at a kid school, craft fair or after school program. If you don’t see what you want to do, then do it yourself.
    CREATE an event you want to be a part of in your community. Think it through and see what comes to your mind of what you may want to put together. Make some phone calls with your trusted friends or colleagues to brainstorm your ideas. Then contact some businesses or organizations to collaborate on an idea for your event. Schedule a time and date. Have your friends and family help you promote it.

    What local events have you been or plan to be a part of (or that you have or are creating) that are aligned with the message of your book? Please share.

    A Lighthearted Look at Life – Guest post by Allen Klein, author of “Healing Power of Humor” and “Having the Time of Your Life”

    Download PDF


    I had the pleasure of interviewing Allen Klein on Inspiration Nation this morning. You can listen to the show if you missed it–check it out on Blog Talk Radio.

    Along with being on my show, Allen graciously offered a guest post to highlight his take on life and it’s twists and turns along the way.

    A Lighthearted Look at Life by Allen Klein ©2014
    With the recent passing of two great comedians, Joan Rivers and Robin Williams, it is only natural that we may be asking ourselves questions like, “What’s life?”

    In honor of Rivers and Williams, below are some humorous responses and a light-hearted look at what life is, and isn’t. All the quotations are taken from a recent book, Having the Time of Your Life; Little Lessons to Live By (Viva Editions, 2014)

    I found out that all the important lessons in life are contained in the three rules for achieving a perfect golf swing:
    1- Keep your head down.
    2- Follow through.
    3- Be born with money.
    —P. J. O’Rourke, American journalist

    The Answer to the Great Question . . . of Life, the Universe and Everything . . . [is] Forty-two.
    —Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

    Life is a roller coaster. Try to eat a light lunch.
    —David A. Schmaltz, author of The Blind Men and the Elephant

    The difference between life and the movies is that a script has to make sense, and life doesn’t.
    —Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Polish-American screenwriter

    Life is rough for everyone…. Life isn’t always fair. Whatever it is that hits the fan, it’s never evenly distributed—some always tend to get more of it then others.
    —Ann Landers, American syndicated columnist

    Life is something to do when you can’t get to sleep.
    —Fran Lebowitz, Metropolitan Life

    You only live once—but if you work it right, once is enough.
    —Joe E. Lewis, American comedian

    Life is not so bad if you have plenty of luck, a good physique and not too much imagination.
    —Christopher Isherwood, British novelist

    Life is like a dogsled team. If you ain’t the lead dog, the scenery never changes.
    —Lewis Grizzard, American comedian

    Life is like a roll of toilet paper, the closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.
    —Andy Rooney, American news commentator

    What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet.
    —Woody Allen, American comedian

    ***NOTE: This article, which is used by permission of the author, was originally titled “What’s life? Funny thoughts on what life is…and isn’t.” It was posted on Examiner.com on September 12, 2014.

    Inspiration Nation Radio invites Anne Bardsley -Author of “How I Earned my Wrinkles”

    Download PDF

    This week, Teresa Morrow, host of Inspiration Nation Radio, invites humor writer, Anne Barsdsley to the show.

    About “How I Earned my Wrinkles:
    You might have earned your wrinkles if:

    • You are married to a Wrinkle Maker, like I am.
    • Like me, you bought the best bathing suit of your life, then saw a maternity tag on it, and it fit!
    • Your husband asked the plastic surgeon if he charges per wrinkle. Then he asked for a payment plan.
    • Your brow has furrowed so long and hard while you tried to remember why you came to the store that you gave yourself new wrinkles. (Only to realize that you were there for wrinkle cream!)
    Sound familiar? If so, join me and let’s celebrate a life filled with laughter, joy, fury, love, memory loss, pure confusion, estrogen, and lack of estrogen, hot flashes, and I forget what else. I hope you enjoy the ride!

    About Anne Bardsley:

    Anne Bardsley is a humor writer, blogger, and author of How I Earned My Wrinkles: Musings on Marriage, Motherhood, and Menopause. Over the years, her work has appeared in several publications. More would be available if she was not so busy pondering ways to firm her thighs. This uses a huge amount of her already limited brain cells. She barely survived raising five kids. They were all worth the labor pains in the long run and have given her wonderful grandchildren. Anne currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida with her husband of thirty-five years and two spoiled cockapoos. You can read more about Anne at http://anzworld.com.

    Check out the interview Inspiration Nation Radio with author Anne Bardsley

    I’ve Been Reading – The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra

    Download PDF

    The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra

    As Deepak describes it, “Success in life could be defined as the continued expansion of happiness and the progressive realization of worthy goals.” He continues , “And yet success, including the creation of wealth, has always been considered to be a process that requires hard work, and it is often considered to be at the expense of others.”

    And this book, he is sharing about the spiritual laws of success. Law, Deepak states, is the process by which the unmanifest becomes the manifest; it’s the process by which the observer becomes the observed; it’s the process by which the seer becomes the scenery; it’s the process through which the dreamer manifests the dream.”
    When I read the last piece of the statement its screams to me a phrase I like to use…taking inspired action.

    So, now here are a few of the laws I enjoyed from The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success

    #1 Law of Success – Law of Pure Potentiality. This law focus on the fact in our purest state, the essence of who we are, we are come from consciousness; also known as pure joy. Deepak states, “when you discover your essential nature and know who you really are, in that knowing itself is the ability to fulfill any dream you have, because you are the eternal possibility, the immersable potential of all that was, is and will be.

    Teresa’s Tidbit: To me, this goes back to self-love. When you know who you are, you love who you are, at your core. When you have self love in your life, you are able to recognize love, embrace love and give love more freely and honesty. Coming back to love, joy, you are able to decrease the amount of anxiety, anger, distrust and dishonesty you have in your life—personally and professionally.

    #5 Law of Success – The Law of Intention & Desire. This law shares that energy and information is everywhere in nature. Chopra adds, “in fact, at the level of quantum field, there is nothing other than energy and information. The quantum field is just another level for the field of pure potentiality and this field is influenced by intention and desire.”

    Teresa’s Tidbit – This law tells us that all that exists is here to help us get to where we want to go, who we want to become and recognize our purpose all the way to accomplishing it with intention and desire.
    Which leads us to the last, #7 law of success:

    #7 Law of Success – Law of “Dharma” or Purpose of Life. This laws says that we have taken manifestation in physical form to fulfill a purpose. Deepak states, “According to this law, you have a unique talent and a unique way of expressing it. There is something you can do better than anyone else in the whole world—and for every unique talent and unique expression of that talent, there are also unique needs.

    Teresa’s Tidbit: You are special and unique, unlike anyone else in the universe. How cool is that when you think about it? We are connected to each other however we are different too. You get to have something that is your “stamp” , your purpose that only you can bring to the world. That’s because there is only one YOU!
    With these laws shared by Deepak Chopra in his book, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, we are given these “stepping stones” that can guide us to our own success in both our professional and personal lives.

    You can get your own copy on Amazon The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success: A Practical Guide to the Fulfillment of Your Dreams

    Inspiration Nation Radio invites Minette Riordan, author of The Artful Marketer

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation invites Minette Riordan, author of The Artful Marketer

    About the book, The Artful Marketer

    Are you a creative entrepreneur who wishes that marketing were easy? Are you tired of trying to figure it out? Have you been stuck at the same income for years and are ready for a breakthrough?

    Inside The Artful Marketer you will discover the 5 mistakes that most creative entrepreneurs make that destroy their chances of breaking through to 6 figures and how to avoid those mistakes.

    Did you know that of the 10 million women-owned businesses in the United States, only 6% ever reach the 6-figure mark? In fact, over 50% of those businesses never exceed $25,000 dollars a year in revenue. You don’t have to remain in that 94% of business owners who never reach 6-figures.

    In The Artful Marketer, Dr. Minette Riordan shows how creative entrepreneurs can turn these statistics upside down and easily break through to 6-figures or more.

    · Learn the 3 simple strategies creative entrepreneurs must have in place to be successful in their business.

    · Find specific ideas for using mindfulness, art and journaling to build your business.

    · Discover practical checklists and templates that make growing your business creative, fun and effective!

    · Create a one-page visual business plan and a colorful, intuitive marketing plan that are easy to implement, fun to create and specifically designed to grow your creative business.

    About Minette:

    Minette Riordan's Headshots

    Dr. Minette Riordan successfully built a 6-figure multi-media publishing company targeting families in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex. For over 10 years she ran Scissortail Publishing, publishers of North Texas Kids magazine, NorthTexasKids.com and producers of the North Texas Kids family expos. She credits her success to learning how to connect with others through networking, referrals, strategic partnerships and an attitude of service to others first.

    Minette is a Certified Life Optimization Coach. She is also a certified Rapid Success facilitator and a certified SoulCollage® Facilitator and Certified Zentangle© Teacher. Minette’s secret to sales success is not about winning a numbers game, but playing the people game: cultivating an attitude of curiosity and openness that will quickly help you attract clients and fans.

    Listen to the interview at Inspiration Nation Radio on Blog Talk Radio:

    Poem of the Week – Love & Writing

    Download PDF

    by Teresa Morrow

    Grey zen stone in shape of heart, on sand background
    The journey I take
    to bring you closer to me
    at times you seem to pull away
    when I want you the most.

    Other times I ignore you,
    find other things to do
    or make up excuses not to be with you
    This just brings on discomfort and unhappiness to me.

    Thankfully I get to choose where I go from here
    my life is about you – my love,
    for you are part of what makes me, me.

    At times I realize you will be dreaming for me
    even when I may not see the dream for myself.

    The path I walk
    among the things that lift my soul
    and spirit, allows you to join me
    in my journey.
    I get to choose that you will be
    a part of me even when I may not feel like it
    because even in those times, the beauty of words
    can shine light where they may be darkness.

    Thank you for showing me the purpose
    I bring to the world.
    As I celebrate love & writing.

    Ask the Guest w/ Mark Hundley about grief, mourning and healing

    Download PDF

    February 2014 pics 046

    This past week I had posted a question on my FB page for Inspiration Nation Radio after having my guest Mark Hundley, author of ‘Awaken to Good Mourning’ on the show:

    What questions do you have around the subject of loss, grief and healing from grief?

    Here are the questions that we received from people:

    Jane Carroll: How can you help someone who is obviously grieving long after the loss?

    Debra Reble: What can others do to assist someone who has lost a significant other in their life?

    Lore Raymond: What facilitates grieving in a healthy way?

    Jodee Sinclair MY question is when you experience a loss of a child whether that be through death or custody why does it feel the same is it because loss is the main factor that your dealing with or is it how you perceive the loss?

    Thank you ladies for supporting my show and asking these valuable questions regarding grief, mourning and healing.

    I’ve asked Mark to come by and share his responses to the questions. See his comments/responses below.

    Inspiration Nation Radio with Mark Hundley

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation host Teresa Morrow welcomes Mark Hundley, M.Ed., LPC, author of Awaken to Good Mourning.

    Awaken to Good Mourning Book Cover

    Rebuild your life after the loss of a loved one. Awaken to Good Mourning, which became an Amazon Kindle bestseller in less than 24 hours, is an essential guide for anyone struggling to cope with grief. The courage required to make it through such an intensely personal journey can be found in this book. After experiencing his own heart wrenching grief, Mark E. Hundley created a life-saving road map designed to show readers how to deal with grief in dynamic ways. By using these effective strategies for grief reconciliation, you can learn to rebuild your life.

    About Mark E. Hundley

    Mark and his wife, Vanessa, own McKinney Counseling Services in McKinney, TX and their main specialty is grief counseling. He is a Life Transition Specialist with a specific expertise in the field of grief. He works with individuals, families and corporations to create and implement strategies for powerful living despite obstacles faced.

    He is a co-founder of the Journey of Hope Grief Support Center in Plano, TX, a non-profit agency that provides free group grief support to children, adolescents and their parents or adult caregivers as they learn to mourn the death or impending death of a loved one.

    He and Vanessa have three children and three grandsons.

    Listen to the show here —>Inspiration Nation Radio with Mark Hundley

    Poem of the Week – Letter from the New Year

    Download PDF

    Letter from the New Year

    Letter from the New Year Poem by Teresa Morrow
    Here I am again
    So what are your plans for me?
    If you have declared me
    The giver of a fresh start
    A fresh start like a blank piece of paper
    Then I hope you will
    Choose to take me in
    and discover
    Talents you have waited to share

    If you someone who has embraced me
    as a reminder
    A reminder not to take life too seriously
    Then I encourage you to approach each day
    with gusto and purpose

    And others of you have taken me on as a beginning
    A beginning to change your life for the better.
    Remember change can happen, it takes one
    Step at a time.

    Now as I have arrived I want you to also
    Take the time to reflect on the past new years
    You celebrated. And even though
    You can’t go backwards you can choose to
    Still take their beauty and remember the
    Precious life moments with those you love.

    I know that I’ve become the spokesperson for not giving up
    Not giving up on dreams, ideas and goals
    While my arrival is still being implemented, I invite you to the party of fresh starts,
    New adventures and personal growth if you choose to accept.

    I am like a buffet waiting to be feasted upon by hungry party goers
    As I give nourishment to the starving, thirsty and those
    who just want to take a piece of me here and there.

    As the party begins, I wish for you to:
    Wake up to embrace each day ahead
    Elevate a positive vibe through each day
    Begin thoughts with inspiration instead of aggravation
    Feed the soul with more understanding & compassion
    Engage curiosity about things you know and those you don’t
    Live your truth as if it’s the only choice you have
    Treasure the time you have with loved ones

    ~Teresa Morrow 2015
    Wishing you a Happy New Year! Let’s Party!

    Get your WRITING ON! Workshop

    Download PDF

    Get your Writing On! Workshop

    Dec 2013 and Jan 2014 pics and videos 010
    This workshop entails (4) weeks of interactive writing tips, tools and prompts to get your writing on track and moving forward. Each week during these 90 minute writing sessions, you will be joining a small group (8-10) of your fellow writers in a natural setting. For each session, we will be meeting in a park located in Pinellas County to soak up the pure essence that being in nature can spark creativity.

    Lake Seminole Park
    10015 Park Blvd.
    Seminole, FL

    1st session: Jan 17th
    2nd session: Jan 24th
    3rd session: Jan 31st
    4th session: Feb 7th

    10:30 am

    COST: $14.00 (this includes a writing journal and notebook) to keep your material and writing in one place during the journey.

    During this workshop you will:
    * Gain confidence in your writing
    * Receive support from fellow writers
    * Learn ways to get past writer’s block
    * Discover tools to help you stay on track
    * Make progress with your book
    * Find tips to becoming better organized
    AND much more…

    Inspiration Nation Radio welcomes Hay House author Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation Radio welcomes guest author Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino

    Join Inspiration Nation Radio host Teresa Morrow as she welcomes Hay House author Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino, author of Percolate: Let Your Best Self Filter Through.

    In this empowering, heartwarming—and often humorous—book, Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino will help you wake up to what’s possible, allow your heart and mind to simmer with fresh ideas to achieve your goals and enhance your well-being, and enable your spirit and passion to rise to the top like the foam on your latte. Elizabeth will guide you through the Percolate ProcessTM, a nine-point plan she developed with Dr. Katie Eastman that teaches you how to implement positive changes to excel in every aspect of your life. It’s simple, practical, and fun!

    Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino, Hay House author and founder and CEO of the Best Ever You Network, understands firsthand the challenges life can bring and has worked with thousands across the globe to illuminate their light within and help them live their best life. She has a degree in communications and broadcasting; is a life coach, food-allergy expert, and anaphylaxis survivor; and is the host of The Best Ever You Show. Elizabeth lives with her husband and four boys in Maine.

    You can read more about Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino, the Best Ever You network and her book by visiting, http://besteveryou.com or http://percolatebook.com.

    Listen live to Inspiration Nation Radio on Wed Jan 7th at 10amET

    Happy New Year 2015 – Don’t Give up On Possibilities

    Download PDF

    In this world, we can be faced with some crazy and sometimes daunting circumstances. As we come into this new year, one of the things I am reminded of is not to give up on possibilities.

    I share a story with you in this YouTube video titled “Don’t Give up on Possibilities” about when my hubby was diagnosed with peripheral artery disease in 2011 and we were told by the doctors they would need to amputate his leg. However…check out the video to see what happened instead.

    This incident really solidified for me not to give up on the possibility of other options that may be available. Don’t quit trying if you feel there is a hint of another solution. Keep going forward to seek out more avenues just in case there can be one.

    I would love to hear about your story of “not giving up on possibilities”.

    Sharing Inspiration in 2015

    Download PDF

    pics & videos at park 061

    2015 is right around the corner and I wanted to share some new and exciting things I’ll be doing in the new year!

    1) Inspiration Nation Radio– For 2015, Inspiration Nation Radio will be a live 30 min show on Wednesdays at 10am ET broadcasted on Blog Talk Radio. The show will feature spiritual, new age, life memoir writers from around the globe to share their stories and messages with you. Please be sure to follow the show on Blog Talk Radio so you can stay updated with the shows and guests.

    2)In January 2015, I will be putting together a local writing workshop in St. Petersburg, FL to help fellow writers get the book from in their head, out into the world. The first one I want to do is a group of writers to get out into nature for inspiration by visiting local parks in the Pinellas County area. You can find out more on my writing workshops/events page.

    3) If you are a spiritual writer/author who is stuck in the writing process and would like someone who will keep you on track, accountable, and motivated with your writing, I’d love to work with you as your writing coach to get your book out there into the world. Check out my writer’s coaching page.

    And I gearing up for 2015 and I’m thankful that I get to do the work in the world with my fellow writers, authors and poets.

    What do you have planned in the new year 2015? Please share and let me/us know the programs, books, events you have coming up in 2015.

    Reflections of 2014 from Teresa Morrow

    Download PDF

    Teresa Morrow shares life lessons from 2014

    Teresa Morrow shares life lessons from 2014

    As I sit in my PJ’s typing this post out, I am reminded of life lessons and what it (life) has taught me in the past year 2014—don’t take things for granted, embrace the blessings, hugs are the best, and laughter can be one of the best medicines.

    Life_Lessons_from_th_Cover_for_Kindle (2) Healing_from_Broken__Cover_for_KindleFor me, 2014 was filled with fulfillment in many areas of my life and some great sorrow too. In 2014, my books, ‘Life Lessons from the Heart’ and ‘Healing from Broken Trust’ were released via CreateSpace/Amazon, which solidified me as a published author. YAY! As a person who has loved words for many years, it was a great joy for me to experience the thrill of having my words become a reality in print to share with the world. And I had the other joy of helping some fellow authors get their message to the world through online promotions. WHOOHOO!

    Christmas 2011 & videos 046On the flip side, I was part time caregiver for my mom whom as diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer and going through chemotherapy. I had never been through the journey with someone of cancer and at first, wasn’t sure how I would do. She was doing the hard part…getting stuck with needles and acting as if it was a day in the part (her tenacity and strength through her journey was immeasurable at times). Watching the women whom raised you and cared for you all through your years, now have to allow others to care for her was humbling but trying at times too. We lost her on June 7, 2014 after her courageous fight. She is now in Heaven as the HUG and GREETING ambassador. Love you forever mom!

    Nov 2013 011And we added another member to our family—our dog, Louie. He came to us after (I’m assuming) his adventures outside in the world. I found him one day curled up underneath our bushes by the side of our house wet, madded fur, and dirty—looking at me with his brown eyes asking for a home.

    My other baby, my teenage daughter Amanda, received her driver’s license and landed a part time job over the summer. She has been and I’m sure will continue to be one of my greatest teachers. In some ways, I believe she got some of my mom’s tenacity as well as her compassion to love others. I think it’s a pretty great combination. But in there is mixed in a bit of stubborn too—which can drive me crazy at times! ARGH!
    I am one proud mom when I see what she has accomplished over her time on this Earth so far. She is smart, loving, creative, beautiful, sensitive, intuitive, silly, funny, stubborn and also truly amazing. She has much to learn and much to teach as each of us do too.

    In a (not so small) nutshell, here are some of the things I learned from 2014:

    1) Don’t take life too seriously – You don’t know when life is going to throw you a curveball, so if you are standing up too straight, you may not be flexible enough to move. Be able to bend with the tide of life. If I wasn’t able to “bend” with the news of my mom’s cancer, I don’t know if I would have been able to help her (or myself) through the journey we went through as a family.

    2) Be happy when it stares you right in the face – Don’t just push aside the happy or funny moments. Become totally invested in them. Sink your teeth in them and don’t let go.

    STORY: When my mom was in hospice, my brother Noel and sister, Sheri came to be with her. My mom had been waiting to see them and it made her happy. She began telling stories of when they little and the laughter started and continued for several minutes. It was great to see her smile and laugh and share these memories with us.

    3) Embrace the blessings in your life – This lessons whacked me on the side of the head quite a few years ago, when I went through the journey after my hubby had a heart attack (you can read more about that in Life Lessons from the Heart). But life has a way of reminding me more and more of embracing even the smallest of blessings in my life. Now, it is part of my spiritual practice to state a gratitude list at the beginning and end of each day.

    4) Hugs can be the best medicine – Something I learned about my mom during her journey with cancer, was that she taught someone else to hug. Initially, I never knew of someone who didn’t “know how to hug” but then I met a friend of my mom. If you know of someone who can use a hug, give one. If you need a hug, ask for one. A hug gives peace and love where its needed the most…the heart.

    STORY:He told me the story of how he met my mom. She was greeting the people at church one day when he came in. He went to walk past her but she stopped him and said, “You can’t go past me without getting a hug”. He laughed and said something like, “I don’t do hugs”. She chuckled back and said, “I’ll teach you, come here.” To make a long story short (HA!), he is now a really terrific hugger.

    5) Just because your loved one is gone from this physical world doesn’t mean you have “lost them” – Now for some who read this you may not agree, but I know for my truth I know my moms (the one who I just lost in June) and my biological mom (whom I lost when I was 6) are with me everyday guiding me. They come to me in my dreams when I request it and send me reminders of their presence all the time. Our loved ones may not be physically here with us anymore, but they are still around helping us through our life journey. I take great comfort in this.

    STORY: My birthday is Sept 2nd. One my birthday, I was missing my mom. I had said quietly to myself. “Mommy, I miss you today. You know what I’d love? I’d love it if you would come see me and let me know you are ok. That’s what I want for my birthday. That night, she came to me in my dreams looking serene with a smile on her face. She held out a card and then opened it. It read Happy Birthday. Validation to me!

    6) Healing takes time and you don’t need to rush it – At times, since my mom passed, I found myself wanting to “rush” the healing process. Not good. Because it just comes back with a bit of a vengeance. Allowing the process to be YOUR process and not forcing yourself, gives you time to heal in your way. Healing doesn’t have a set time line and don’t allow anyone else tell you there is a deadline to it.

    7) If there is someone in your life, you love, let them know. If there is someone in your life that doesn’t resonate with you, let them go. Life is too short to have people in your life that don’t support, encourage and/or love you for you. With that being said, if you have a person in your life, who support, encourages, and sees you for the authentic self, hold on to them. And when I say let others go who don’t resonate or support you, that does not mean you need to send them away with ill intentions. Just surrender them to the world in love and light. With those whom you treasure, keep them close. Learn and grow from and with them in your life.

    STORY: During the last couple of years, I have been able to distance myself from those who don’t align well with who I am and my values. I don’t wish them any ill will or pain, I just don’t allow them to invade my energy space. Then there are those whom I have recognized are good for my energy and soul so I’ve created opportunities to increase the time I spend with them.

    What lessons did 2014 teach you? Please share with me and let’s learn together.

    Life Lessons from A Fault in our Stars

    Download PDF

    March 2014 019Last week, my daughter and I watched the movie adaptation of the book, A Fault in our Stars by John Green.

    The movie in one word for me—intense. The movie in two words for me—intense and beautiful. One more word I would add is real.

    My daughter had been wondering if I would want to watch it because one of the main characters has cancer (my mom passed away just 5 months ago from cancer). At first, my thought was I didn’t want to watch it, but then I thought, “I can handle it.”

    I am glad I went though with watching the movie, A Fault in Our Stars. Even though I cried through most of it. It reminded me of things I guess I needed to hear.

    This movie has allowed me to be reminded of the following life lessons:

    1) Make each day count – In this movie, the main characters are under 25 years old and they are all sick with terminal illnesses. However, one of the main things they come to find out (some sooner than others)….soak up each precious moment that you have left.

    2) Love never dies – In this movie, it reiterates, that even if you have limited days on the Earth, don’t hold yourself from loving someone. Don’t stray away from doing those things you want or love to do. Love can prevail under the most of unfortunate circumstances. Love can run deep and true while alive and beyond.

    3) Quality outranks Quantity – You don’t have to be famous to leave a legacy – One of the things one of the characters talk about in the movie is wanting to create a legacy so when he dies, he will be remembered by the masses. Then someone who he truly loves reminds him that he has changed her life forever and it

    3) Pain needs to be felt – It doesn’t do any of us any good when we try and push or hide pain away. We need to instead feel it so we can find the way to deal with it and through it. In the end even though we might loss someone and the pain comes from loving them. It’s better to love than not to love at all.

    Some times life doesn’t hand us the most pleasant of things to deal with like cancer, loss, death, or pain.

    However, life also delivers us things to celebrate like joy, happiness, growth and love.

    It’s what we CHOOSE to do with ALL of Life has to offer that matters.

    If you wish to find help or support in the lessons that life has to share—

    I am offering a 21 day CELEBRATING LIFE LESSONS CHALLENGE starting January 1st.

    You can read more about 21 Days of Celebration to Life Lessons here.

    For only $14, you will join in to receive 21 days of daily inspirational emails to put you in connection with your inner guidance and empowerment tools from life lessons. Additionally, you will be a part of 2 LIVE phone callswith heart-centered, positive thinking, open-hearted people to further support you on your transformational journey to celebrating life.

    Or SIGN UP NOW below:

    Sign up for 21 Days of Celebration to Life Lessons

    * indicates required

    Grieving is a natural part of life and it hurts

    Download PDF


    Grieving is a natural part of life. When we lose someone we care about, it hurts us. And the truth is it doesn’t have to be when you lose someone. It can be grief over a broken relationship or a loss of a job. No matter the reason for the grief, the pain is still powerful and can drop us down to our knees. We have to take whatever time we need as individuals to get through the grief. And hopefully along the time, so where, we are able to move forward with the lessons from the loss.

    Grief is a process and there’s no right or wrong way to grieve. And I believe there isn’t a time limit either. Although, there can be this underlying feeling of “obligation” to grieve quickly or “get over/past it”? It’s been not even five months since my mom passed.
    She passed away in June 2014. June 7th to be exact.

    During this time, I didn’t share much about it online. And that’s okay. I don’t have to share what I don’t want or feel like I don’t want to share. But I feel that it helps me when I share about those things going on in my life. Look at my books, ‘Life Lessons from the Heart’ and ‘Healing from Broken Trust’—both are written about things that happened in my life.

    And from the experience with my mom (she had stage 4 lung cancer) where I became one of her caregivers, I am planning on writing a book from the lessons I learned to help others.

    Also, I’m a writer, words are how I express and heal from the wounds I face in my life.

    One of the things I have done to honor my mom is to contribute a chapter titled, “Caregiving to the Caregiver: An Honor” to the Transform your Life series (Book 2). One of the things I most remember about my mom is her innate ability to take care of me when I needed her without a second thought. It was as if a light was switched on and she became the most gentle nurturer—I honor her for that.

    As each day passed my grief is flowing back and forth between the different stages of acceptance, anger and disbelief. I wish she could still be here in the physical world however, I wouldn’t want her in pain and where she is now, there is no pain. Just beauty and joy.

    The other day, the theme song for Sound of Music came on. I stopped in my tracks. It was one of her favorite movies and she would watch it every year (most of the time I would watch it with her).
    Last year in December, she had begun her chemo treatments and a day or two after she had chemo, she was having a rough day—not being able to eat or keep anything down. We had been scrambling to figure out how to help her. We finally got some medicine that made her feel much better and she was able to eat some food.

    That night, Sound of Music was on the TV. I had been buzzing around the house doing this and that and my niece stopped me. My niece pulled me into the kitchen (which is next to the living room where my mom was sitting in her chair) and said, “Shhhh, listen”. I replied, “What, what?” Her and I listened.

    My mom was whistling. Now, this may not seem like a big deal to most people. However there is a few reasons why this was truly awesome—1) she was on oxygen 2) she had been sick for most of the day 3) she hadn’t whistled in a long time 4) it was to one of the her favorite songs.

    *And when I say whistle—-I mean the melodic beautiful whistling that flows effortlessly to the notes of a song.*

    WOW! As I write this, tears run down my face as this is one of the great memories I get to have of her.

    I was wondering…what do you do to help you through your grief? Write, draw, cook, sing, dance, exercise? Please share as I believe when we share it can help each of us heal.

    Re-introduction of Teresa Morrow – Part 2

    Download PDF

    pics and videos July 2013 005Hi again. Teresa Morrow here. My last name wasn’t always Morrow, of course. Maiden name was Perkins. But I feel Morrow will be the last, last name I carry.

    That brings me where I left off with my last Re-introduction post, Re-introduction with Teresa Morrow Part 1.

    The man I was referring to in the last post is my husband, Eddie Morrow. He and I met at work. We were friends for quite a long time before we began dating. See, I thought he liked a friend of mine.Disney Trip 2012 with Neal 024

    From the beginning I liked being around him because he was an excellent listener. He and I would have these one to two hour conversations all the time. I could share anything with him. I was able to show my true self with him (or at least the “self” I thought I was at the time).

    We had a HUGE complication at the beginning of our relationship though. My dad did NOT like the fact I was dating a man who was 20+ years older and from a different race (Eddie is African American and I’m Caucasian). He disowned me. It crushed me but looking back on the situation, it was one of the best things that could have happened.

    Crazy to say, right? But, it’s true. It forced me to look deep inside myself and find out who I was and who I wanted to be. It made me discover true self love and what love really was for me in my life.

    From the disownment, I found out who Teresa really was and that she deserved to be loved for ALL of her—the good and growing parts.
    By the way, (shameless plug) I wrote about this in my latest book, Healing from Broken Trust: A Journey of Transformation.

    I find that sometimes when we (I ) am faced with adversity or challenges in my life, there are life lessons dug in there for me to learn.

    Fast forward a bit, my dad and are have a strong relationship than we have ever had but it was work on both of our parts to mend and we continue to mend the relationship. We’ve learned together how to better communicate with each other because we BOTH wanted the relationship to work and come back. And he and Eddie have a good relationship too. This is something I will be share more about in the upcoming year. I plan on putting together some workshops around broken trust and self love. Stay tuned!

    In the summer of 2011, my husband Eddie began complaining of pains in his legs. At first we didn’t know what it was because his work was labor intensive, we just figured he pulled a muscle or something. Back and forth to different doctors but not too much resolve until we went to a vascular doctor. Come to find out Eddie has periferial artery disease in his legs. As we were getting things worked out to get surgery done, he had a heart attack.

    A heart attack that the doctor said should have killed him but didn’t. MIRACLE 1.
    Then,the medical staff were planning on amputating his leg, however, MIRACLE 2 a partner surgeon stepped in and performed a “special” surgery that saved his leg. Eddie had some complications from the surgery—-he developed an infection and with his heart being so weak they thought he would be able to sustain the medicines and antibiotics. He did- MIRACLE 3.

    After he was finally home, he needed to still have work done on his left foot to ensure the circulation would be getting to his toes. The doctors thought he might still lose a toe or two because of the length of time with proper circulation to the foot. He didn’t—MIRACLE 4. It has been 3 years and he is doing well.

    With Eddie’s medical journey, I learned lessons of love, caring, and trust and my spirituality grew exponentially. I knew that Eddie was still with us for a purpose. And that reconfirmed for me, that I too, am here for a purpose. Eddie and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary in Sept 2014. WHOOHOO!

    From this experience, I wrote my first book, Life Lessons from the Heart, which I sprinkled with poems after each chapter. My writing was in full swing and I haven’t stopped writing since.

    Disney Trip 2012 with Neal 008
    The other greatest joy in my life is my daughter, Amanda. She is now 17!!! I can’t believe it! Where does the time go, right? She has been my joy, my life, my heart and one of my greatest teachers.

    This past June (2014), I lost someone very important in my life. My mom, Shirley, passed away after her courageous battle with lung cancer. Christmas 2011 & videos 046

    My heart still aches without her in my life. I do know from my own spiritual knowing that she is and will be one of my guardian angels. But I still miss having her here on Earth with me. I miss her smile. I miss her laughter. I miss her hands. I miss…her.

    After she passed, I thought about what she would want me to do and I heard…do what you love. Do what makes you happy. So, that’s what my mission is—do what I love and what makes me happy. Because of the lessons I learned while care-giving for her, I am inspired to write a book on care-giving.
    And continuing my writing, poetry, helping fellow spiritual authors share their messages. Spending time with my family and friends, those I love. Creating memories and moments. Striving to create (and be) authentic inspiration that I wish to see in the world. Sharing life stories with authenticity and integrity. That’s me.

    Who are you and what helped you get to where you are today? I hope you will share a bit more about you. Bring out and share your life story and what makes you, you.

    Re-Introduction of Teresa Morrow – Part 1

    Download PDF

    Teresa Pics Dec 2011 024Hi. My name is Teresa Morrow. I wanted to offer a “re-introduction” because I feel it’s about time to share more of me—The things that make me happy, the things that make me sad and all the rest in between.

    But first I want to share about my background—where it “all started”.

    I wanted to share about my journey—through words, stories, experience and well, lessons I’ve learned. And boy, I’ve learned some pretty BIG lessons over my (so far) 43 years.

    Starting from the beginning, I was a miracle, literally! Even though I believe we all are truly a gift from our creator.

    My biological mom, Betty, was actually sick when she gave birth to me. She had developed cancer and they found out about it after she had my brother who is two years older than me.

    I only weighed a little over a pound when I was born and the doctors said I probably wouldn’t make it. HA! I guess the joke is seriously on them, right!

    I didn’t think about how much of a fighter I was or how much I really must have known I had a distinct purpose here on Earth until much later in my life (about 10 years ago).

    Me and my mom BettyWe had the gift of my mom, Betty for six more years after I was born. She was only thirty four years old when she passed. As a child of such little years, I didn’t realize the impact her death would have on my life. I’ll share more about that in forthcoming posts.

    About a year later, my dad got remarried to a lady named Shirley who had four children of her own. Is the Brady Bunch song running through your head? If so, that’s okay, now there was a total of 7 children (me, the youngest).

    Being the youngest, sometimes that was a great thing (I got to watch & learn from my siblings) and other times it was a pain (I got left out because I was “too young”).

    My dad had a great house built for his “new” expanded family. There was me, my biological brother Peter, my biological sister Patty then my step brothers, Noel, Neal and Nelson and my older step sister Sheri.

    Now, I HAVE to stop here and point out a very important thing to me. I don’t consider and have never considered my step family, “step” at all. They are my family. We were brought together for a reason…to be there to be a part of each other’s lives.

    I had a pretty darn good upbringing…not too much to complain about there. The normal sibling rivalries and a mom who, at times, was quite over protective.

    Dad worked hard (some what of a workaholic) and we really didn’t want for much.

    When I was in middle school, I took an elective creative writing course. I thought it sounded interesting, so I signed up. Talk about finding your “calling”. I didn’t realize it at the time but it was the catalyst to what I do today.

    Sometime during the course, the teacher had told us that the yearbook staff was looking for a few short stories, essays, or poems for the yearbook. Our class was one of the classes selected to see if anyone was interested in submitting something. I thought, “Sure, why not give it a shot.” I didn’t want to do a short story or an essay but I thought I could probably come up with a poem. I submitted it to the teacher who then gave it to the yearbook staff. A few days later I got the news, my poem was accepted!

    At that time, I was feeling a bit alone—like noone understood me. My poem was a reflection of that. I don’t remember it verbatim but it was about being in a box and feeling alone not able to get out.

    Later in my early 20’s (during my 1st marriage—again, another story for another time!) I found poetry again when I was going through a tough time finding myself and figuring out who I wanted to be. I wrote about heartache, deception and confusion.

    It would be six years before I would write poetry again. I revisited it when my daughter was born and I married her biological dad (2nd marriage).

    mom and amanda pics 2 004This time the poems were more uplifting–about love, happiness, joy, and being a mom.

    During these years, I worked at various corporate and family run businesses as an administrative assistant or receptionist. I had always enjoyed working on a computer and learning different software & applications.

    My 2nd marriage lasted about two years when I realized we were not good together as husband and wife. And being in that situation, in my opinion wasn’t good for our daughter either.

    Now, I was a single mom (shout out to all the single parents out there—WHOOHOO!). This lasted about three years.

    Until I met…the man. The man who would change my life forever.

    I’ll tell you more on the next post…stay tuned.

    I want to hear from you. Will you share your “re-introduction” with me? I’d love to connect with you sharing your story.

    Poet’s Corner: Transcedance by Lisa Vunk

    Download PDF


    At the Dawning I saw the Light of what I thought was a setting sun…
    I ran and hid in the darkness for I found comfort where I could not be seen…
    There…in the black…I Thought…I Fought…I Taught…my self not to believe…
    I, the Lone Warrior, prepared myself for battle as I drank myself to sleep.

    Quietly the hunters came and stabbed me where I slept…
    They were swift about their Duty and left without a trace…
    There…in the gray…Pain…Loneliness…Nothing…as I lay slowly dying in the dusk…
    Only to finally see, by the Light of the Rising Sun, that I had rolled over on my own blade.

    A soft breeze caressed me as I awoke to the sparrow’s song…
    I could smell the Sweetness of the flowers and feel the Warmth of the Sun…
    There…in the Light…Freedom…Peace…Hope…and at last I was able to cry…
    I, the frightened Child, left my mangled armor and began to crawl towards the Sun.

    © Lisa Vunk 1985, 2014
    Spiritual Awakening Facilitator, Conscious Evolution Coach, Healer, Author, and Social & Spiritual Activist/Change Agent @ http://www.transcendance.us/

    What I’ve Been Reading: The Artist’s Way

    Download PDF

    What I’ve Been Reading: The Artist’s Way

    Each week, I’ll share with you one of the books I’ve been reading. This week, it’s all about the book, The Artist’s Way“>The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.

    Here are 3 things I loved in this book:

    1) It can be used individually or in groups. For instance, there is a group being formed in my area to talk about The Artist’s Way. The book is to be absorbed a chapter per week at a time. It allows the reader or readers to dive into each chapter and capture the creativity inside. —>For me, I have read the book individually, however, I can definitely see how this book would be a great group discussion to help support fellow writers.

    2) At the midway point (about 4 weeks into the “course”), the author, Julia talks about our feelings and fears that can deter our creative flow. She says, “We have seen how often we think negativity and fearfully, how frightening it has been for us to begin to believe that there might be a right place for us that we could attain by listening to our creative voice and following its guidance”. –>WOW! This hit me like a tons of bricks because, how often has this happened to me, where the “ego monster” comes out to try and make me think I’m not a good enough writer or that no one will care what I am writing about.

    3) In the last week (Ch 9), she shares about compassion. Having compassion for your fellow writers but especially yourself. There will be times when things don’t work. Cameron says, “Have compassion. Creative u-turns are always born from failure—fear of success or fear of failure. It doesn’t really matter which. The net result is the same”. —>As much as we are our own biggest cheerleaders, we can also be our worst critics that can stop us in our tracks. I hope you and I don’t allow the ego to win because we have special and unique messages that only each of us can bring to the world.

    You can pick up your copy on The Artist’s Way“>Amazon

    Have you read, The Artist’s Way? I would love to know your thoughts, ideas and comments about the book.

    Poet’s Corner – Piece of Pie from Nila Kelly

    Download PDF

    The piece of the pie
    The world’s outcry
    Get it crooked or get it straight
    Though to receive a blessing may be too late
    Never content with anything small,
    Greed makes one Yearn to have it all,
    Self fulfillment is the prominent goal,
    Does negativity soothes the soul?
    No return, though traveling has been far and wide,
    Not knowing any better, just taking it all in stride,
    All over the world the pie is at reach,
    Never finding sanity, nor gaining peace
    ~Nila Kelley

    BIo: I am Nila Kelley I have been writing poetry many years . I enjoy writing, reading, inspiring and helping others. I Have formerly worked in social services and I enjoy the rewards of putting smiles on others faces,and assisting them with maximizing their potential in many different aspects of
    life. I believe writing is a medicine that heals the mind and poetry heals the soul. I am a strong believer in family unity. I have an Associates degree in Human Services and writing poetry is my spare time passion.

    Guest on The Gift of Choice Show with Bonnie Grossel

    Download PDF

    I had the honor of being a guest on The Gift of Choice show with host Bonnie Grossel.
    On the show we talked about self love, trust, anger, relationships, life lessons and healing.

    Bonnie asked me some great questions—one was how I inspired to write my 1st book, Life Lessons from the Heart. I explained the inspiration initially came from the medical issues that my husband undertook in the summer of 2011 after he suffered a heart attack (and subsequently had a laborious operation for peripheral artery disease in his legs). But what I learned from that experience was vast and it led me to reflect on other lessons I learned throughout my life earlier. Life events such as my biological mom’s passing when I was only 6 years old. And the divorce from my daughter’s biological father. There are others that I share in the book and along with the experience the lesson I learned from them.

    During the interview Bonnie asked me if there was one thing I wanted the listeners to take away from today’s interview, what would it be? I shared about self love—how vastly important it was to me in my transition from just thinking who Teresa was to BEING & LIVING as Teresa.

    The catalyst for my self love journey was when my dad disowned me for dating a man from a different race and he is 20+ years older than me. This experience is chronicled in my 2nd book, Healing from Broken Trust: A Journey of Transformation. I learned the crucial important lesson of understanding what self love mean to me and how it could change and has changed my life (for the better)!

    I hope you will take the time to listen to The Gift of Choice show and be sure to let me know what you thought. I would love to hear your comments, ideas and thoughts.

    Poet’s Corner – World Gratitude Day

    Download PDF

    On this day, World Gratitude Day, I wanted to share some inspiration from the world of words…through quotes and poems on GRATITUDE!

    (thanks to Daring to Live Fully for helping with these quotes)

    “Whatever our individual troubles and challenges may be, it’s important to pause every now and then to appreciate all that we have, on every level. We need to literally “count our blessings,” give thanks for them, allow ourselves to enjoy them, and relish the experience of prosperity we already have.” — Shakti Gawain

    “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” — Epictetus

    “You simply will not be the same person two months from now after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life. And you will have set in motion an ancient spiritual law: the more you have and are grateful for, the more will be given you.” — Sarah Ban Breathnach

    “At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.” — Albert Schweitzer

    And here are two poems I found on gratitude. ENJOY!

    Gratitude by Grandma Kay
    I would like to say
    Thank you for The many things
    you have done
    Helping me to understand
    Always being there
    Noble choices in life
    Keeping high standards
    Yesterday’s memories
    Over the years
    Updating always the knot
    Grandma Kay


    Prayers of Gratitude

    Say a prayer for the little ones.
    for the frail and elderly
    the ones in pain;
    all kinds of pain
    Be grateful!! for the good things in life
    AND for the hard times!
    This is the way I begin my day
    I pray and say Thank You….
    Cathy Aaron

    Did You Know? Pre-Sale Orders are here at Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing!

    Download PDF

    Did you Know? Pre -Sale orders coming to Amazon Kindle

    Ok, now this is exciting to me and should be to my fellow writers and authors out there! Amazon Kindle will now have it available for us to pre-sell our books! WHOOHOO!

    Last month, August 2014, Amazon released its offer to allow authors in the Kindle Direct Publishing programs, to pre-sell their books 90 days before their “official” release date.

    The way it works is that you would follow the steps to showcase and list your book on Kindle Direct Publishing. Once going through the steps you will be asked if you wish for your book to be list as a “pre-sale”. You click yes and your book will be listed for pre-sale as long as you follow the requirements set by Kindle Direct Publishing.

    You will need to have your manuscript ready to send to Kindle for review. Also, only new KDP books will be eligible for this program. In other words, if you have a book already being sold, you can’t go back and host a “pre-sale party” as if it were a new book.

    By offering the option to “pre-sale” books, it gives an additional boost to marketing and promotion of your book BEFORE it comes out. You can host a “pre-sale” online party for your book without having to do some of the work that you would have previously had to do.


    What kinds of “pre-sale” parties or hosted events have you done or are you thinking about doing for your KDP book?

    Guest Post: Let’s Talk about ADVENTURE with Terez Hartmann

    Download PDF

    pics & videos at park 061

    The Journey is REALLY the destination my lovely bright spirited friend, states on her blog post about the POWER of ADVENTURE!

    The beauty to me of adventure is that it is UP to you what the word ADVENTURE means to you—it can mean going to a new park or trying a new sport or going to a exotic destination.

    Here’s what else Terez says–

    Here’s another great reason to embrace and incorporate The Power of ADVENTURE into your Allowing repertoire: Participating in some kind of happy ADVENTURE today and NOW allows you to ENJOY now, which IS what having your stuff/experiences is ALL about any way…

    I agree when you ALLOW yourself to be OPEN to adventure, you are BEING in the NOW of the world. WHOOHOO! Love that!

    Terez goes onto say–

    Embrace ADVENTURE on a Larger Scale
    When you wait to live, you live to wait, so why not start enjoying the journey NOW?!

    1. Think BIG and make a list of the grander adventures you’d like to participate in that could rock your world in beautiful ways!

    2. Choose something from your list, live that adventure and enjoy the journey NOW!

    I like the idea of making a list of adventures you wish to participate in—pick something and DO IT NOW! Like she says, why wait, take the jump out of your comfort zone and explore the ADVENTURE!

    Here’s an adventure you can begin with and Terez is here to help:

    If your idea of ADVENTURE involves hiking and experiencing magnificent waterfalls, frolicking in fantastic fall foliage, cruising scenic highways & byways, exploring stunning national treasures, wine-tastings, jamming to feel-good live music, limo parties, inspirational workshops, FUN and all-around FABULOUSITY, join us for our next ALLOWING ADVENTURE in beautiful Asheville and Brevard, NC this fall!

    For full details visit: Allowing Adventures.com.

    You can read the full blog post article by Terez on the POWER OF ADVENTURE

    #ThrowbackThursday Song – “(I’ve had) The Time of My Life” by Bill Medley feat. Jennifer Warnes

    Download PDF

    For #Throwback Thursday Song, I wanted to share one of my favorites of all time…”(I’ve had) The Time of my Life” by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes.

    This song capsulates the theme of what life should be viewed as…don’t you think?
    As a teenager at a prom date or your 1st date with the boy or girl you’ve liked for a long time and you have finally gotten the opportunity to spend time with them, you may be one to sing this song at the top of your lungs. And of course, it brings back memories of one of the all-time most popular 90’s movies, Dirty Dancing with Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze.

    However, it can be more humble than that…just realizing that life is something to be savored and enjoyed every day…not just when the time is good.

    Where were you or what memory do you have associated with this song?

    #ThrowbackThursdaySong – “Jump” by VanHalen

    Download PDF

    #ThrowbackThursdaySong – Jump by VanHalen

    This weekly post is a complement to the #throwbackthursday that was started on Twitter where people show pictures of when they were younger.

    I started thinking about it and while I do have some pictures of when I was younger (and I may share eventually), I wanted to share in a different way.

    Music has always been a big inspiration to me, whether I am having a terrific day or a crabby day, it can always seem to make me feel better.

    For my first blog post in the series I wanted to share about “Jump” by VanHalen.

    Here are 3 things I love about the song:

    1) Right from the beginning note it makes me want to get up and move (possibly jump)

    2) It’s a great anthem song for when you are feeling unsure about where you may wish to go next…to me it inspires us to “jump” aka move forward to what feels right.

    3) I love the this lyric, “You got to roll with the punches to get to what’s real”. I believe this is a reminder that even though life can push you down at time, we have a CHOICE to lay there or GET UP…and well, jump!

    What song do you like that makes you feel like “jumping”?

    Did you Know? About I am a Story (Iamastory.com)

    Download PDF

    Did You Know? About I am a Story

    This column is about random things I found out about in the writing, publishing, reading, media, public relations, and/or blogging industries.

    I was introduced to I am a Story.com on one of the Linked in Groups I am a part of, Writers & Authors Circle. One of the top contributors Rolland Love, Author, Actor, Speaker ✔ OZARKSTORIES.COM – Write Your Life History ✔ IMASTORY.COM shared about this site in a discussion post.

    Why do I think you should check out I AM A STORY.COM?
    Here’s what Rolland had to share about it:

    A FREE and simple way to sell books, photos and artwork.

    * Register with Imastory.com

    * Write or Cut and Paste novels, stories, poems, photos or artwork in Imastory.com include your website address so users will be directed to your site.

    * In the case of books make the best book you have free on ebook publisher websites, for sure Amazon.com and Smashwords.

    * Use Twitter to help drive traffic to stories, photos or artwork that are posted on Imastory.com where there are almost 1,000 stories from around the world that can be read free.

    * Readers, read your stories or look at you photo or artwork and if they like what they see will go to your website and buy your stuff, hopefully.

    * It’s not a get rich quick method but it works. The reason I know this to be true is I have sent out about a dozen Tweets per day for the past (6) months and I have thousands of reads on the stories I posted on Imastory.com.

    You don’t have to write new stories each time you can just cut and paste some of those you have in your archives.
    If you want to see how many reads I have received, once you’re logged into Imastory.com http://www.imastory.com Type my name Rolland Love, or Love, or Ozarks in the Browse mode. Over the long haul the process has resulted in almost 20,000 downloads of my novel Blue Hole and I have over (200) five star reviews. http://tinyurl.com/ogxxlup – – – http://ozarkstories.com

    Did You Know? Goodreads is now on Kindle

    Download PDF

    Did You Know? Goodreads is now on Kindle

    This column is about random things I found out about in the writing, publishing, reading, media, public relations, and/or blogging industries.

    This week, I found out that Goodreads is now on Kindle!

    What does this mean? With Goodreads being on Kindle this allows avid readers (like you and I) to have access to thousands of books at their fingertips—WHOOHOO!

    What book are now available?


    Burnt Toast Makes you Sing Good by author, Kathleen Flinn
    In this family history interwoven with recipes, Kathleen Flinn returns readers to the mix of food and memoir beloved by readers of her bestselling The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry. Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good explores the very beginnings of her love affair with food and its connection

    We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas
    Born in 1941, Eileen Tumulty is raised by her Irish immigrant parents in Woodside, Queens, in an apartment where the mood swings between heartbreak and hilarity, depending on whether guests are over and how much alcohol has been consumed.
    When Eileen meets Ed Leary, a scientist whose bearing is nothing like those of the men she grew up with, she thinks she’s found the perfect partner to deliver her to the cosmopolitan world she longs to inhabit. They marry, and Eileen quickly discovers Ed doesn’t aspire to the same, ever bigger, stakes in the American Dream.

    Between Friends by author Debbie Macomber
    The friendship between Jillian and Lesley, told through their correspondence, begins in the 1950s and is charted through to the present in this remarkable story. Through the years and across the miles, two very different women confide in one another and prove what friendship truly means. It’s a story filled with the laughter and tears that are shared “Between Friends.”


    The Astonishing Power of Emotions by authors Esther and Jerry Hicks
    This leading-edge book by Esther and Jerry Hicks, who present the teachings of the Non-Physical entity Abraham, will help you understand the emotions that you’ve been experiencing all of your life. Instead of the out-of-control, knee-jerk reactions that most people have to their ever-changing life experience, this work will put those responses into a broader context.

    A Woman’s Worthby Marianne Williamson
    With A WOMAN’S WORTH, Marianne Williamson turns her charismatic voice–and the same empowering, spiritually enlightening wisdom that energized her landmark work, A RETURN TO LOVE– to exploring the crucial role of women in the world today. Drawing deeply and candidly on her own experiences, the author illuminates her thought-provoking positions on such issues as beauty and age, relationships and sex, children and careers, and the reassurance and reassertion of the feminine in a patriarchal society.

    Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
    Researcher and thought leader Dr. Brené Brown offers a powerful new vision that encourages us to dare greatly: to embrace vulnerability and imperfection, to live wholeheartedly, and to courageously engage in our lives.

    What books have you read or have on your “to read” list?

    How making pancakes helped me with my writing

    Download PDF

    Pancakes and Writing
    Pencil erasing an "error"
    Churning into my creativity, I was in the middle of putting together the details of my newsletter. Then BAM! I got stuck—I felt like the pieces I was creating didn’t seem to make sense or be helpful or interesting. So what did I do?

    I walked away from the screen. Yes, you read it right. I was frustrated, overwhelmed and not sure what I wanted to do next. Walking into my kitchen I thought “Perhaps a snack would make me feel better”. I opened up my fridge and noticed a newly purchased pint of blueberries and remembered I wanted to make some pancakes.

    At first, I thought “it will be fun to make some yummy pancakes”. Then as I was putting the ingredients together in the bowl and for some reason, I read the box wrong and began to put in 1/2 cup of oil (instead of 1/2 tsp). Needless to say, I had to dump out some of the batter with all the oil and then remake a new batch of batter.

    What was supposed to be “easy” and “allowing me to get a break” was frustrating me even more!?!

    Just when I thought “what the hell is going on with me? This was supposed to be something fun and easy”, I asked myself, Do you want to continue making the pancakes?” “Yes.” was my response. “Why?” Because I know I can do it if I just take my time when doing it.”

    So I did just that. I took a deep breath, remade the batter and create a plate full of blueberry & pecan pancakes. YUMMY!

    P.S. Then I went back to my newsletters and finished them up. You can sign up for my newsletter here at TeresaMorrow.com and/or at The Author’s Cheerleader.com.

      Lesson for me:

    When you get frustrated (whether at life or your writing), remember you can chose to quit or keep going. If you decide to quit, you don’t gain much. When you keep going, you make just make a beautiful masterpiece. Don’t allow getting stuck (or frustrated) keep you from finishing what you love or want to do. Just breath and move forward.

    What lesson have you learned from another activity you enjoy that helped in your writing?

    Writing, Blogging, Grieving and a radio show…oh my!

    Download PDF

    Whew! Tons of things moving around, shifting and then again settling down again.

    On a professional note…quite a few things to share:
    1) I have been working on writing a fiction book…I know, different huh? So far I have about 1500 words…many more to go.
    2) As this is a new blog post, I’m getting back into my blogging mode. I have two other websites that I blog – The Author’s Cheerleader, where I share online marketing and visibility tips and tools for authors. Also, my new website/blog at Inspiration Nation Radio, where I will be sharing guest blog posts from my guests on the show.
    3) I have been asked to be a monthly blogger again at Successful blog.com where I will be sharing a variety of spiritual books to their audience.
    4) As I mentioned above, I will be resuming my radio show, Inspiration Nation via Blog Talk Radio in mid-August. You can read more about that at the website or BTR.
    5) I am grateful I get to continue to work with spiritual authors to help get their work and books out to the masses through my online book promotion services. You can read more about those at The Author’s Cheerleader.

    On a personal note:
    I’m settling back into a “new way of life” since my mom passed away in June. It’s weird, strange and at times it just SUCKS not to have her here with us. However, I have to try and stay in gratitude that she was here and a part of my life (and many others) for a great amount of years.

    We have some terrific memories to cherish and share about her. And now she is at peace and not in pain anymore. Again, we are all grateful for that. I know she is looking down at us and she continues to be a part of our lives as we try and move forward.

    I hope you all are having a lovely summer and continue to shine your unique light with those in the world.

    Thank you all for your ongoing support and encouragement for all my endeavors—my writing, blogging, promotion work and radio show!

    As I continue my work to share inspiration through the world of words!

    Write on!


    Inspiration Nation Interview with Terez Hartmann – Author of ‘Allowing Your Success’

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation interview with Terez Hartmann – Author of ‘Allowing your Success’

    This week I would like to introduce you to a lovely lady I met recently in person after we have been friends online for a few years. —Terez Hartmann, author of “Allowing your Success“.

    In the interview she shares about how we can all life our live the way we want by taking time to go by “how we feel” in the moment. This is just one of the things we talked about. She offers great tips and strategies to bring ways to allow your success with using such things as music, art, nature, and others.

    The bonus of this interview is you get to hear a song written and sung by Terez Hartman.

    Listen to the interview below

    About the book, Allowing Your Success:
    From Struggle to SIMPLE

    From Stress-Filled to JoyFULL

    From Making it Happen to LETTING it Happen!

    What if life could feel more like a FUN ADVENTURE than an arduous climb?

    What if we could BE and FEEL truly SUCCESSFUL TODAY and NOW?

    What if the path to TRUE SUCCESS was paved with HIGH-ENERGY, GREAT RELATIONSHIPS and JOY, rather than struggle or pain?
    The time has come…

    …for a NEW way of living, loving, being and SUCCEEDING based on a NEW paradigm for the 21st century & BEYOND!

    We have read many books, attended many workshops and looked to so many sources for THE secret formula to living a truly successful life—but what if we each had access to our OWN answers and PERSONAL IDEAL strategy for success all along?

    In this fun, inspiring and ground-breaking book, Terez shares “Allowing Keys™,” “Allowing Power Tools™” and insights designed to help YOU discover YOUR path to claiming the LOVE, MONEY, HEALTH, CONFIDENCE and HAPPINESS you deserve—all while ENJOYING THE JOURNEY!

    Are you ready for a path to success that eliminates struggle and is all about SIMPLE?
    Are you ready to trade a life that’s stress-filled for one that’s JoyFULL?
    Are you ready to start enjoying your journey EVERY day by shifting from making it happen to LETTING it happen?
    Then get ready to live life at a higher level and start ALLOWING Your Success!

    About the Author:
    PointingRed2wSigforWebFrom the time she was a child, Thérèse “Terez” Tami Romano Hartmann was passionate about finding ways to help people to remember how powerful they truly are…

    Even as a youth, Terez truly walked to the beat of her own drum and possessed a deep love, fascination and appreciation for beauty in all forms (including a deep reverence for nature and animals) and was a visionary ahead of her time with an extraordinary ability to focus. She held a powerful desire to always look for and draw out the best in anyone who crossed her path and has always held an intense passion for not only learning about & understanding the nature of life, spirituality and the Universe, but truly applying the knowledge she assimilated to every day life.
    Even prior to the advent of “The Secret” and “What the Bleep…”, Terez has spent the majority of her life consciously working with the Law of Attraction and “Allowing”, and owes her many years of ever-increasing professional success, her constant flow of creativity, her vibrant health, her many extraordinary adventures, her amazing relationships with positive-minded, “cream-of-the-crop” human beings and – what she feels to be her greatest allowing achievement – her extraordinary ‘soul-mate’ marriage, to truly practicing what she teaches in her writings, presentations and music.


    Inspirational Word of the Week – Resume

    Download PDF

    Each week I will bring my fellow writers a word of the week. This word is to help ignite the creative juices and stimulate the writing you have inside you.

    Inspirational Word of the Week – Resume

    How might you use this word in your writing this week? Please do share.


    Inspiration Nation Interview with Sharon Salvaggio – Author of ‘Control Your Now’

    Download PDF

    Host Teresa Morrow invites you to listen to her interview with author Sharon Salvaggio, author of ‘Control your Now’

    In this interview, Sharon Salvaggio offers many tips and strategies to use on a daily basis as reminders on how to control your now.

    Listen here

    About the book, ‘Control Your Now’:

    CYN CoverDo you feel as though life isn’t what it is supposed to be? Do you feel as if you have nothing but bad luck? Maybe it seems everyone else is luckier than you or just has it better than you. Whatever your situation is, you can change it for the better. Maybe it’s a better relationship that you want or a better job. Your goals can be yours if you know what to do to get them. You can be that person who has all the luck. In Control Your Now Sharon Salvaggio provides insight on how to change your life for the better. Through practicing the exercises in this book, you will see positive changes in your life. Learn how to embrace the changes in your life and put yourself in the control seat of your life.

    Control Your Now offers clear steps to setting goals and achieving them. No longer will you have New Year’s resolutions that get broken and to do lists that never get completed. You will be in control of your life and will learn how to dispel the negative factors in your life, things that are holding you back from achieving the life you desire. Life no longer has to be a day dream. It can be your reality. Starting now you can make your life as great as you want it to be.

    You can grab your copy of Control Your Now

    Inspirational Word of the Week -Pamper

    Download PDF

    Each week I will bring my fellow writers a word of the week. This word is to help ignite the creative juices and stimulate the writing you have inside you.

    Inspirational Word of the Week – Pamper

    Please share how you might invite this word into your writing.


    Inspirational Word of the Week – Feast

    Download PDF

    Each week I will bring my fellow writers a word of the week. This word is to help ignite the creative juices and stimulate the writing you have inside you.

    Inspirational Word of the Week – Feast

    How will you use the word FEAST in your writing this week?


    Inspiration Nation Interview with Dr Noelle Sterne – author of ‘Trust Your Life’

    Download PDF

    Interview on Inspiration Nation with Dr. Noelle Sterne, Author of ‘Trust Your Life’

    Author Bio:
    thNoelle Sterne is a published fiction and nonfiction writer and author of a children’s book. She has conducted a coaching, consulting and editing practice for more than 28 years, guiding doctoral candidates to completion of their dissertations with the highest scholarly standards. A spiritual counselor as well, Sterne in Trust your Life, gives readers the practices and principles she uses with clients and in her own life.

    About the Book:
    Trust your Life: Forgive Yourself and Go After Your Dreams

    You may have always dreamed of doing something big in your lifetime. If only you were younger, smarter or thinner, or if your childhood, marriage or finances had been different, then you’d fulfill that deep desire, you say to yourself. Consider this: it’s not too late, no matter what your age or circumstances. Any self-judged “wrong turns” you feel that you’ve taken have been nothing less than perfect. Every life experience has perfectly prepared you for where you are now.

    In Trust Your Life, you will learn to forgive yourself for your “mistakes” and begin to see them as the inevitable steps toward the future you want to create. Through spiritual guidance, life-affirming thoughts and powerful examples, Trust Your Life will help you recognize your inherent creative power as a child of God and uncover, pursue and joyfully realize your long-cherished dreams.

    Noelle Sterne is a published fiction and nonfiction writer and author of a children’s book. She has conducted a coaching, consulting and editing practice for more than 28 years, guiding doctoral candidates to completion of their dissertations with the highest scholarly standards. In Trust Your Life, Sterne gives readers the practices and principles she uses with clients and in her own life.

    Listen to the interview with Dr Noelle Sterne here –

    National Poetry Writing Month – Poem #2

    Download PDF

    Today, for NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month) we were encouraged to write a poem bases on myths and it was suggested to think about Norse mythology such as Thor.

    After reading some more information about Norse Mythology I learned about Gods such as Odin or the goddess Freyja.

    Mine is about a tree but not just any tree—-“>Yggdrasil. But not just any tree.

    Oh, Sacred Tree

    You bring praise
    As your reach spans
    From sky to sea
    To the number of nine
    Masses gather to seek
    Answers and acolates
    Victory or defeat
    Bowing to mighty
    Bark and leaves
    Oh, sacred tree
    Possibly on a hill
    Its holy Yggdrasil


    Inspirational Word of the Week – Succulent

    Download PDF

    Each week, I share a word of the week with you. This word is to bring attention for writers to the world of words that can be used in your next sentence, page or book.

    Inspirational Word of the Week – Succulent

    Please share how you will or might use the word “Succulent” in a your next writing adventure.

    Happy Writing!

    National Poetry Writing Month #1 Poem

    Download PDF

    National Poetry Writing Month

    I am excited—I am going to TRY and contribute to the National Poetry Writing Month for the first time!!

    For the first day, we were requested to go to Bibliomancy Oracle and push the button. Use the quote that comes up and write a poem from the inspiration you receive.

    My quote was “But then it’s fire, fire, always someone with a stake or a knife”

    and here is my poem titled, “Ready?”

    The edge of the blade
    Shadowed against the arm
    A raven haired young lady
    Standing in the echo of the moon
    Hinted whispers with a melody
    Floating in the air
    And a fire stirs
    in her gut

    Another neat thing about the National Poetry Writing Month is that each day they spotlight a press and/or participant. You can also submit your site if you would like to share your poems with others.

    And if you are interested —check out and “like” the FB page for NaPoWriMo

    FELLOW POETS: Let’s be sure to support each other…please share your site and your poems for National Poetry Writing Month!

    Inspiration Nation interview with author Linda Burhans

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation interview with author Linda Burhans – author of ‘Good Night and God Bless’

    LindaheadshotLinda Burhans is a national speaker on Caregiver Advocacy and the author Good Night and God Bless, a heartfelt story about the joy and challenges about caring for a parent.

    As an expert in Caregiver Advocacy, Linda has facilitated over 600 support groups and workshops for caregivers. She shares lessons learned and coping tools with thousands of caregivers who attend her events or read her work. Her weekly blogs provide expert guidance on resources and best practices for caregivers all over the United States.

    Hear the interview here:

    About the book:

    Book-Cover[1]In her book, Good Night and God Bless, Linda welcomes readers to join her on her emotional, rewarding, and sometimes frustrating journey as caregiver to her beloved mother, Jo McCauley, during the final 18 months of her life. The book offers inspirational messages of unconditional love, loss, joy, sorrow, and a healthy dose of humor for those caring for aging parents. 

    Linda describes those 18 months as the most rewarding and eye opening of her life. She discovered that there were no centralized sources of information and support for caregivers. She took on the challenge in becoming an expert on resources for caregivers. She learned about different support agencies, benefits, and helpful organizations available locally and nationally.

    Armed with the knowledge, Linda set on a path to share these resources and provide support to caregivers everywhere. She was subsequently appointed as the Caregiver Advocate for Harmony Health, a home healthcare service provider. In addition, to her role at Harmony, Linda is an active and dynamic speaker, facilitator, and proponent for caregiver support.

    Get your copy here on Amazon


    Inspiration Nation interview with author Laurel Geise

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation interview with author Laurel Geise- author of ‘The Jesus Seeds: Igniting Your Soul Guided Life’

    About the book: At the core of every soul, the seeds of truth and grace await the right frequency of light to awaken them. With this activation, they burst open, allowing wisdom to flood the soul and rise to the cognitive level of the mind. In this awakening comes access to the cosmic encyclopedia of life.
    Congratulations on following your intuition. By simply picking up this book, you will embark on your journey to activate these seeds. You have taken a step to lift and shift your consciousness. The words will create a vibrational expansion within your awareness. As an evolutionary primer, it is not important to intellectualize what you are reading but rather to feel the energy of what is being communicated in your heart, body, and soul.

    author-228x300Laurel Geise is an inspirational author, teacher and speaker who empowers people around the world to live an authentic soul-guided life. When the practicality of real-world examples combine with the awakened energy of her message, the evolutionary impulse ignited by Laurel’s teachings will lift and shift your consciousness. Once experienced, you will step beyond what you can imagine to redefine the future of your life.

    Laurel’s background is a unique combination of thirty years as a business executive coupled with decades of seeking personal growth insights from world religions and belief systems. Blending together undergraduate studies in psychology, graduate studies in business and doctoral studies in spirituality, she enthusiastically weaves a vision of unbounded human potential that is calling to be unleashed. She is an ordained interfaith minister and lives in Florida. Her new book, The Jesus Seeds: Igniting Your Soul-Guided Life, is available on Amazon.com and BN.com. For information on upcoming events, book signings and her virtual book club, visit www.LaurelGeise.com.

    Listen to my interview with Laurel Geise:

    You can pick up your copy here on Amazon

    World Poetry Day

    Download PDF

    In Honor of World Poetry Day, I wanted to share with you a bit of one of my favorite poems–

    The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

    “…Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference.”

    Why is this poem one of my favorites? I enjoy it for the end as I showcased above…the message of being independent and knowing you can make the choice for your life. Not taking the path just because it is popular but take the one that is right for you.

    Here is the full poem The Road Not Taken

    I hope you join in…please share your favorite poem and why?


    Inspiration Nation Interview with author Michelle Rosado

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation interview with author Michelle Rosado, author of ‘Pursuing Your Destiny’

    Michelle’s dreams of entrepreneurship were manifested while working in the marketing department at an investment-banking firm in New York City. After being there for over a year she began to feel that her career was becoming stagnant, so she began taking classes in photography and even took classes in web design at New York University.

    She found herself frustrated that her ideas for change in the department fell on deaf ears. Then, on the morning of September 11, 2001, when Michelle was at her desk on the 95th floor of Tower 2 in the World Trade Center, her life was changed forever. 

    A New Journey…
    michelleTwo weeks after the tragedy Michelle was asked to go to Fort Lauderdale, Florida to handle disaster recovery for her firm. Her visit was to last only two weeks, but as fate would have it she met her husband and soul mate, Randy, who worked in the office with her. On October 6, 2001 she wrote the article “Will I Recover?” which described her experience on 9/11.

    She posted it online and emailed it to her former co-workers and friends in New York, but little did she know where the article would lead her. In the weeks following Michelle began receiving emails from readers all over the world, and she realized that writing was a therapeutic way of healing. 

    During their journey in network marketing Michelle discovered her gift for public speaking. She was presenting to audiences of 15-20 people one or two times a week, and she also conducted sales training to existing members. “I felt blessed to have such a supportive husband at my side and mentors who guided me in my speaking career.”

    Purchase your Copy Now on Amazon: Pursuing Your Destiny: How to Overcome Adversity and Achieve Your Dreams


    Inspiration Nation Interview with Malana Ashlie

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation interview with author Malana Ashlie, author of ‘The Threaded Gem Adventure’

    Holistic healer and author Malana Ashlie has always sought to help others. When she decided to retire in Honduras, she saw a need for women to achieve financia independence through entrepreneurship, so she established the Single Mother’s Project. The focus of the Single Mother’s Project is to help mothers develop financial freedom through small home based businesses. 

    Malana Ashlie is a board certified traditional naturopath and metaphysican. She works as a holistic counselor, focusing on helping those afflicted with chronic conditions.  She offers guidance in her consulations, books and the healing vacations held at her home outside La Ceiba, Honduras. 

    Get your copy now- The Threaded Gem Adventure: or How to connect the Jewels in your life.


    Inspiration Nation Radio Interview with Karen Noe

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation Radio interview with Hay House Author Karen Noe

    Inspiration Nation Radio with Karen Noe, Hay House author of ‘Through the Eyes of Another’ will be the first guest in 2014. 
    Karen Noe, is a renowned NJ based psychic medium, spiritual counselor, and healer with a two-year waiting list.

    You can listen to Karen on The Angel Quest Radio Show by tuning to www.wrcr.com on the first Saturday of every month at 1:05pm EST. You can visit her web site at: www.karennoe.com.

    Purchase your copy of Karen’s book here Through The Eyes of Another: A Medium’s Guide to Creating Heaven on Earth by Encountering Your Life Review Now

    About Karen:
    author2She is the author of ‘The Rainbow Follows the Storm: How to Obtain Inner Peace by Connecting with Angels and Deceased Loved Ones’ and ‘Through the Eyes of Another: A Medium’s Guide to Creating Heaven on Earth by Encountering Your Life Review Now’. She is the founder of the Angel Quest Center in Ramsey, NJ where she teaches classes, gives readings, and practices alternative healing.

    Transformation Soup #6 – The New Normal (thanks to change)

    Download PDF

    The New Normal – Transformation Soup #6

    Once you or someone you love is diagnosed with cancer, your life is different. The way you do things are different and the way you see things are different.

    However, different doesn’t have to be a negative thing (easier said than realizing). That’s the definition of change….life flowing in a new direction.

    In her book, Transformation Soup, SARK talks about NEW into the NOW. When things change in our life and become a new normal, it does become what is the now.

    New takes time to adjust and get used to and some people are more easily adaptable than others. Since my mom was diagnosed with cancer, her and my dad’s life have been turned upside down. And that isn’t even the emotional part of it. That’s a separate layer all by itself. I’m talking about their daily routine of how they lived their lives. My mom used to be able to drive, at this time she can’t. She used to be able to get up and do what she wanted, when she wanted, she can’t right now.

    And on top of that, she has to take about a dozen pills to combat the side effects of the cancer.

    We all go through change many times in our lives and some of the time we can adjust pretty easily. But when it is something taking over your body, the feeling that what was before won’t be back again runs pretty deep and it takes time to adjust. The problem is that with cancer things move at warp speed because the doctors are trying to beat the cancer at it’s own game so it’s continual appointments, prescriptions and consultations.

    I’m not even the one with the cancer and sometimes I feel like I don’t even know if I could state my name if someone asked me to because things are moving continuously.

    Going back to what SARK says in her book, Transformation Soup, The NEW is the NOW.
    It’s coming to the understanding that what was is no longer. I guess its like when you get divorced, leave a relationship or lose a job.

    BAM—I just had an AHA moment. We all have to take the time to “mourn” the person my mom was and accept the person she is now. THE NEW mom. It’s not about losing something, it’s about gaining something.

    Taking on the challenge, the acknowledgement, the actuality of who she is now. Because even when she beats this cancer (prayers please), this experience will have forever changed her and all of us, so we are meeting the new mom.

    And we are meeting the new us as individuals too because we have changed too (another AHA moment). Why not take this as an opportunity to do things as new as the now. SARK shares how she wanted to try new things such as, try on lavender corduroy jeans and love wearing them, ride a horse again, and making something out of clay.

    Talk about what is at the core and essence of transformation…changing into something new. Acknowledging your new is the now.

    The more we fight against the change, the more it pains us and feels like we are drowning in it. (another aha moment). We don’t want her to have cancer. She doesn’t want to have cancer. We want her to be the way she was before the diagnosis. She wishes she was the person she was before the diagnosis. She can’t and won’t be that person —but hey, she can come out of this even BETTER!

    I think that’s where hope comes in too—the juxtaposition of change is hope…and faith, right?

    How do you deal with change in your life? Please share tips and tools that have helped you when you have been faced with a big life event change.

    Transformation Soup #5 – Make a God or Spirit Box

    Download PDF

    Creating a Spirit or God Box to help your Transformation

    One of the things SARK talks about in her book, Transformation Soup, is how she created what she called her “God Box” . She stated she heard about them from another one of my favorite authors, Anne Lamott.
    SARK thought, “That’s nice for her, it will never work for me.”

    I chuckled when I read that because it was similar to what my ego tripped me up with too. Then as I read more about the God Box, I realized how the box was a symbol for those who use it as another tool in the spiritual ritual to help manifest those things they wish to have in one’s life OR it could be just a statement of gratitude.

    What is a God or Spirit Box?

    It is any box you find that you wish to use to place notes in it to share with the universe, spirit or God. SARK said she began by writing funny littel notes to God and slipping them into the God Box.

    What happened next?

    1) SARK said she was able to RELEASE the obsessive thoughts once she wrote them down AND mysterious solutions to issues came to appear after she left a note.
    2) She said when she wrote the notes, she didn’t feel ALONE anymore in her problems. She even began taking request from other people for certain problems.
    3) The notes went from writing about material requests, she began to describe various states of surrender and ask for help in experiencing it.

    For example—here’s one:

    Dear God,
    Please help me accept and respond with love to my money fears.
    Love, SARK

    her God (Spirit) Box is part of her life and she turns to it often.

    What tools do you use in your spiritual ritual that help in your daily transformation?

    Transformation Soup #4 – Lessons in Self Love

    Download PDF

    Transformation Soup – Lessons in Self Love

    As the day of love approaches (the coveted Valentine’s Day) I wanted to share a few things I learned from SARK in reading her book, Transformation Soup.

    1) Begin to love yourself AS IS today and not when you lose 5 pounds or begin exercising or eating better.

    2) Talk nice to yourself. Speak to yourself in a loving kind manner like you would if you were talking with a friend.

    3) Write yourself a letter. I had the pleasure of interviewing author Karen Noe, author of Through the Eyes of Another and one of the things she recommends in her book is writing a letter to yourself as if you were writing it to a friend.

    4) If you want to eat better and/or exercise do it for the right reasons…to be healthier in mind, body and spirit and not just to fit into the latest fad.

    5) Remember once you can recognize and embrace self love for yourself, you are more able to see and receive love from others in your life.

    I wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day! LOVE ON!

    And if you want to learn more about self love, I am hosting a FREE workshop titled CELEBRATE YOU! at Panera Bread on 4th Street in St. Petersburg, March 29th from 2-4pm.

    National Cancer Day Poem – My Ode to Cancer

    Download PDF

    Ode to Cancer by Teresa Morrow

    Note: This poem comes from my recent experiences after my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer.

    I have to say
    I am not a fan of yours

    And I know you don’t care
    How you make people
    Feel the first time they hear
    You have embedded yourself in their lives

    You have the tendency to make me
    And my loved ones cringe, cry, and need
    To be consoled for the emotional &
    Physical pain you deliver with relentless devotion

    But there are those who demonstrate bravery
    Beyond compare
    And other who will conquer you beyond expectations

    I heard someone say
    When the wound is open
    The monster can retreat
    But the opposite might be said with you
    As you have the tendency to thrive in the chaos you cause with

    A waterfall of unknown myriad flood of questions, countless
    doctors appointment and the apparent shadow that follow us called change

    However, among the craziness you gift to those Around you

    You do hide a treasure that I don’t know if everyone can see or find
    Because your puzzle of confusion masks this golden nugget

    My wish for others affected with or by cancer is this–
    Look to scatter the ashes of doubt, regret and fear
    And bring along with you instead,
    the light of happiness, gratitude and most importantly, hope.

    Transformation Soup Lesson #3 – Responses

    Download PDF

    When is the last time you find yourself irritated, pissed off, aggravated, angry at someone or something that happened to you?

    Was it last week, yesterday or even 10 minutes ago?

    As humans, it can’t be helped sometimes when we find ourselves mad, upset, confused, bewildered or down right pissed off about something or someone.

    In this book, Transformation Soup: Healing for the Splendidly Imperfect“>Transformation Soup by SARK, she shares about how much of her life, she blamed her problems and issues on her mother—-all her life. When she was asked to take her mother out of the equation when she brought up issues or problems in her life, she realized she had to begin to focus on herself.

    SARK says, “It doesn’t matter what you can find in another’s personality to irritate or convince you that it’s…her…fault..she’s…so…wrong…there will always be copious evidence.

    It matters what your responses are.

    We can go around blaming others and the circumstances surrounding us for things and feelings HOWEVER, how we react and respond to each of these things is the KEY to turning it all around towards self healing.

    What person or thing can you begin to stop blaming and then begin healing today?

    Transformation Soup Lesson #2 – Jewels in the Dirt

    Download PDF

    This week’s lessons was about finding the preciousness even in the darkness of the healing journey.

    SARK calls these “dark caverns” an inescapable part of our journey, yet we don’t need to live there.

    With this statement it relives me of the burden a caregiver can feel when there is so much (actually too much) going on all at once in the midst of trying to feel like you have to have all the right answers ALL the TIME.

    And she’s right that in these “dark” moments—those unknown pieces of time when you find yourself overwhelmed with all those people, places and things to “make things right”. Yes, even at these times, I am finding LAUGHTER, JOY and TRUTH between family members and friends, I didn’t even know was there or possible.

    So, what have you found in your “dark caverns”?

    If you want to know more about the book, check out Transformation Soup: Healing for the Splendidly Imperfect“>Transformation Soup by SARK.

    Transformation Soup Lessons Begin

    Download PDF
  • With a new year, I wanted to share with you a book that I’ve couldn’t wait to read—Transformation Soup by SARK (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy).

    In life, we are dealt with trails and tribulations that most of the time we never see coming. This happened to me about 3 years ago when my husband had suffered a heart attack and subsequent medical issues.

    And at the end of 2013 my mom has been diagnosed with a serious health condition that has turned our families’ life upside down. The title of caregiver has been once again added to my roster of life daily duties and with this situation the field of unexpected and unknown has become the norm again.

    Have you ever read a book or even a poem or quote that seems to speak to you just a the right time??

    This is what happened to me as I began to read, TRANSFORMATION SOUP by SARK.
    This book – Transformation Soup by SARK – seemed to jump out at me. I heard a gentle voice inside my head say, ” as you read it share it with others”. So this is what this blogging series will be about for as long as the conversation continues.
    Here is what I learned as I read the first five pages. I quickly realized while reading, this book is jammed packed with tons of JUICY (one of SARK’s favorite words) tidbits of information that is geared to help anyone going through any transformation of sorts—-death of loved one, loss of job, divorce, new parent, marriage or even a journey of caregiving.

    LESSON #1: Sark starts off by sharing when she wrote this book, she made a “Declaration of Healing”. I rather like that so I decided to do the same—here is my own declaration of healing —for me it will be healing through caregiving.

    I DECLARE during the journey of caregiving I will try to find and even embrace the momemnts of life, love, friendship, feelings, joy, peace, stillness, and whatever else comes with the moments.

    I DELCARE I will try and remember that sometimes in the silence I will find the answers to the questions I am looking for. When I am able to surrender and let go of trying to KNOW THE ANSWER, I will open my mind and spirit to the message there.

    When we share our stories about our lives—whether good, bad or indifferent, we can help in each other’s healing journey. We are not alone in the journey(even though we feel we are many times) and we are more connected than we may first believe or understand.


  • Happy New Year 2014

    Download PDF

    As the new year has set upon us, I wanted to begin by sharing some thoughts, quotes, poems, sayings and excerpts from books or music that inspire, encourage, support me (and hopefully you too) in this coming year.

    Here is a poem I created to help bring in the NEW YEAR :

    2014 Here We Come

    Sitting on the brink of a new year
    chiming in
    Things stir in my mind and
    flow to the pen
    and down on paper
    Many years have been spent
    struggling with resolutions
    only to have disappoint thrive
    In this new year my journey
    contains ideas, thoughts
    and prayers to include
    I will say thanks for happiness
    that blooms from inner peace
    I will gleam on blessings
    seen in the very seconds on moments
    I will remember smiling
    encourages human connections
    I will embrace love
    that breeds from all living beings
    HAPPY NEW YEAR 2014!

    Guest Blog Post with Dietrich Stroeh – Help for Caregivers

    Download PDF

    Caregivers: About Visitors
    By J. Dietrich Stroeh

    One of the first reactions from friends and family when they hear that
    someone has a serious illness is to ask if there is anything they can do.
    This of course is the right thing to say and some people say it for that
    precise reason. Others actually mean it and some will even expect an
    An even smaller percentage of people will ask if they can visit. This
    generous and genuine offer also comes with some built-in challenges for
    both the patient and the caregiver.
    Those facing a life threatening illness need contact with those they love
    AND they need downtime and rest. Socialization and the connection to a
    life that is as regular as possible must be balanced with rest so the
    body can fight the illness.
    My wife Margaret was diagnosed on December 22nd, 2009 with Stage 4
    pancreatic cancer. That night we talked on the phones with friends and
    family about what we had learned. The next day people began calling to
    come by. At first, the visits were welcomed and Margaret was cheered by
    the company. Inevitably, after they left, she would remark that it was
    certainly nice that they took the time to come by. She was behaving as
    she always did, she would entertain people and present her social side as
    soon as someone stepped into the room. There was never any hint that she
    felt badly or that she was tired. She felt that as long as people went to
    the trouble to visit, she needed to do her best to welcome them.
    In the following weeks, I would greet visitors if I was home and do my
    best to explain to them how Margaret was feeling and what her condition
    was like. The reason was simple: if I could answer some of their
    questions, then Margaret wouldn’t have to. Also, when dealing with a
    disease as insidious as pancreatic cancer, there is inherent discomfort
    with how people ask questions, and in turn, what some of those answers
    Generally people of course wanted to catch up with Margaret, but
    sometimes there was an awkward quality to the conversation. They were
    curious about her condition and how she felt, but wouldn’t pry. They
    wanted to communicate that they cared, but at the same time, didn’t want
    to be rude. They knew that there was a line out there somewhere. On one
    side was genuine human caring and curiosity, a need to comfort a friend,
    a desire to help. On the other side, was a nagging feeling of being
    In some cases, people would tell Margaret about their lives, rather than
    risk somehow walking across that line that they could not see or sense.
    On some levels this may have struck Margaret as odd, but she never
    complained about the one sided nature of the visit.
    I found that I struggled to a small degree with her visitors as well. I
    wanted Margaret to stay in touch and to be as connected as she possibly
    could to her life as she had known it. At the same time, I was also very
    defensive of her condition and wanted her to feel as well as possible. It
    seems that I, too, was looking for that elusive line between what would
    make her happy and what might tax her body.
    It’s important to set up clear ground rules with family and friends
    regarding visits. Let them know they are always welcome to call and that
    their company and energy are valued. Likewise be honest and tell them
    that some days a short phone conversation might be the best thing. Make
    suggestions about what they might want to bring if they ask. If your
    loved one is uncomfortable talking about something, clue her guests in.
    Because we live in an information age, I found that that using email and
    online communication tools such as Caringbridge.com allowed me to keep
    everyone updated.
    Staying in touch is important for all concerned. So, it’s important to
    find what will work best for you and your loved ones.

    J. Dietrich Stroeh is author of Three Months: A Care-giving Journey from
    Heartbreak to Hope (2012 Folkheart Press). For more information, visit

    Writers: Why Will Power Won’t Work but Habits Will Work Guest post by Rosanne Bane

    Download PDF

    Why Habits Work When Will Power Won’t by Rosanne Bane

    Worried you don’t have the will power to write more or meditate regularly?

    Stop worrying. You don’t need will power – you need habits. Unlike will power, which gets weaker every time you use it, habits get stronger with repetition.

    Why Will Power Fails

    “Will power” is what most people call the ability to make a decision to resist temptation or do something we’d rather not do. The problem is that we face so many temptations and difficult decisions that our will power is over-stretched and strained until, like an overused muscle, it fails.

    Social psychologist Roy Baumeister defines the limits of will power as Decision Fatigue. Every time you make a decision, you use a tiny bit of a limited supply of cognitive ability to make decisions. Making a decision, it turns out, is like lifting a dumbbell. The first time, it seems like nothing; the fiftieth time, you feel the burn.

    By the end of an average day, you’ve made at least 200 decisions just about food alone. You make thousands of decisions a day — e.g. what to wear, should I go to the gym, when will I open email, which of the hundreds of requests for my attention will I respond to, is that guy going to swerve into my lane…

    No wonder you’re mentally exhausted by the end of the day!

    Habits Are Easier
    Unlike will power, habits are strengthened every time you practice them.

    When you do a certain behavior, a series of neurons fire in a sequence along what’s called a neural pathway. Every time that pathway is used, the neurons get a coating of myelin, which insulates the pathway. Signals travel faster and more accurately along well-insulated pathways.

    The more often you repeat a habit, the more efficient the pathway becomes, which in turn makes it easier to repeat that behavior.

    Habits don’t require decisions – you do something just because you do it. There’s no debate about whether you’ll write or meditate today, so you’re not relying on limited decision-making energy.

    The Catch 22
    The problem is that before you have a habit, you’re doing something that takes mental focus and a willingness to be a little uncomfortable. But our capacity for this kind of mental focus and willingness is limited – as anyone who’s ever made great food choices all day and then fallen “off the wagon” in the evening out of sheer exhaustion can attest to.

    You have to use that mental energy wisely. Here’s how.

    Building Habits the Easy Way

    1. Do the behavior you want to become a habit first thing in the morning when your will power is strongest. Putting your writing first means you don’t have to keep making the decision to write all day long, with ever-decreasing cognitive ability to make a good decision.
    2. Set your intentions carefully: only give your word when you know you will keep it. Do what you say you will do every time you say will.
    3. Make small commitments you can keep and build on your success.
    4. Use all available tools — calendar, online reminders, support groups, tracking charts, check-ins with colleagues, etc. — to remind you to bring your mental focus to bear on doing the behavior you want to become habitual.
    5. Enlist a partner. People who have workout buddies are far more likely to get to the gym than those who don’t. And writers who tell another writer what commitments they’re making to their writing are far more likely to honor those commitments.

    Once you have a habit, you still need to honor your commitment every time, but you need much less mental focus and willingness to sustain the habit.

    Will power fades and disappoints you, but habits endure. Who wouldn’t want writing habits instead of will power!

    Rosanne Bane is a Creativity Coach and the author of Around the Writer’s Block: Using Brain Science to Solve Writer’s Resistance. She publishes , a blog for writers called Bane of Your Resistance to share insight and information about the many forms of writer’s resistance (including writer’s block, procrastination, distractions, looking for answers in the fridge, keeping yourself too busy to write, etc.) so we can write more – more often, more easily and more powerfully. Website: Rosanne Bane
    Facebook page

    Her next online class – Discover Your Way Around the Writer’s Block starts October 14; for more information visit

    Guest Blog Post by Carla Coates about Tools to Thrive By

    Download PDF

    Tools To Thrive By

    In today’s world of stress and hurry, doubt and worry, it is sometimes difficult to find the balance we need to keep our body, mind, and spirit healthy in order to find joy, purpose and spiritual connection.

    It not only requires proper nutrition for our bodies, but we also need to nurture our spirit and focus on positive energy and thought processes. Ten tools that will help us do this are as follows:

    1. Meditate

    Meditation is the portal to enlightenment. It is calming and provides peace and tranquility. There is no right or wrong way to meditate. You may want to try different techniques till you find what works best for you. You may listen to audio recordings, music, chant, or it may mean just sitting quietly. Put aside at least fifteen minutes a day to meditate. Most answers you are looking for come from the silence.

    2. Connect with nature

    Spend time outdoors, go for walks and get in touch with nature. Listen to the birds, breathe in the fresh air, stop and smell the roses, and appreciate all the beauty mother earth has to offer.

    3. Do things you enjoy

    Have bubble baths by candlelight; Read lots of positive inspirational books. There are literally thousands out there. Watch an inspiring movie, (non-violent!) The Secret, Pay it Forward, The Bucket List, The Shift with Wayne Dyer are some very good ones. Listen to beautiful soothing music that moves you. Sing at the top of your lungs, dance like no one is watching, dance in the rain, sit in a park and watch children play, listen to their laughter; go to a spiritual retreat, play games with your family, go fishing, quading, horse back riding, anything to have fun, laugh!

    4. Start a Gratitude Journal

    What you focus on grows stronger as that is where the energy goes. If you are always focusing on the negative and what is not good in your life you will attract more of it to you. Focus on the positive by doing a gratitude journal. Each night before going to bed, write down things that have happened throughout your day that you are grateful for.
    It can be anything from, I am thankful for the sunshine; I am thankful for the green grass, I am thankful for my warm bed and food on my table. There are many things to be thankful for. You will notice big changes even after thirty days. Try it! This will be one of the most important things you can do to start living a more positive and fulfilling life.

    5. Affirmations

    Say affirmations. You can record yourself saying them and listen to them every day. Some examples are; I am a total success, things always go my way in life, all of my efforts bring rich rewards, I set high goals for myself which I am able to attain, I am a warm and friendly person and people are naturally drawn to me, people seek me out to do business with me, I feel positive at all times and people respond to me in a positive way.

    6. Surround yourself with positive people.

    Attending personal development seminars is a great way to rejuvenate. Not only do you learn something new, but you get to hang out with positive, like-minded people and meet new friends along the way. Avoid hanging out with Negative Nelly. If you must be around negative people, limit your time with them as much as possible.

    7. Create a Vision Board

    Another very helpful tool is a Vision Board. Seeing pictures of your heart’s desires helps you to hold the vision in your mind. When the vision is in your mind, it manifests into your life. Thoughts become things! This can be done a number of ways. Cut photos of the things you want in your life from magazines, newspapers, or the get them from the Internet and paste them onto a bulletin board or poster board. Put it somewhere where you will be able to see it everyday. Put it on a wall in front of you, beside your desk and look at it daily. You can also make a movie that contains visions of your heart’s desires, watch it on a regular basis so your visions will be locked in your mind’s eye and always be present. If you hold your vision, it will soon manifest into your desires.

    8. Write down your goals and ideal life

    Write out what your ideal life looks like. For every facet of your life; relationships, career, financial, health, environment, etc. write out what that will look like if money and time were of no significance, and then keep those visions in your head and focus your energy towards them.

    9. Eat a Healthy Diet

    Eat plenty of vegetables and fruit. Choose lean proteins such as chicken, beef, eggs, and fish. Eliminate all processed foods. If it is white or comes in a box do not eat it. Check labels. Many foods you think are healthy are full of sugar.

    10. Exercise

    Move your body. Not only does it help with stress, it fills it with nourishing oxygen and allows more flexibility. Start small by going for short walks. Set goals each week to go a little further. Do what you enjoy doing, walking, cycling, yoga, anything to get your body moving. Exercise also provides feel good endorphins to your brain.

    Using these tools on a regular basis–and I recommend daily–will give you everything you need to feel joy and vitality, so that you may live life to it’s fullest, and THRIVE!

    Carla shares her story and experiences she went through and how she found positivity and turned her life around even through the toughest of times. You can listen to her interview on Inspiration Nation

    Guest Blog Post By Roberta Swartz – Self Hypnosis & the Gateway to Personal Health

    Download PDF

    Self Hypnosis – A Gateway to Personal Health, Inner Peace and Wellness
    By: Roberta A. Swartz, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist

    Throughout the ages, humankind has desired to understand the meaning of life. This same desire is alive today, as we search for a deeper sense of purpose. Imagine yourself beneath the star filled sky and you’ll know that you are a part of something quite profound. We instinctively sense and strive for this connection, hoping to go beyond the mundane, often stressful activities of daily life.

    As we continue searching, expanding our awareness, we know that we are much more than physical machines to be fixed with drugs or surgery. We want more than what traditional medicine has to offer. We are ready to participate in our wellness, wanting to experience tangible ways to explore and expand our human potential.

    The depth of human potential goes beyond the surface of our being, beyond words and time, beyond intellectual constructs of mind. The real depths of human potential are within. It’s a knowing, a feeling, a deep connection to our self and the world around us. There are many
    different rituals from all different cultures that provide opportunities for us to reach within.

    Yet, regardless of the culture, regardless of the ceremony, they all have one thing in common; they all create a shift in our awareness, a shift between our mind and our body, a shift in our relationship with the world around us. This natural shift creates a synchronicity within our being and provides the proper environment for us to access our fullest capabilities.

    Hypnosis is a gateway to this higher power, allowing access to subconscious awareness and direction. I find it interesting that such a powerful, natural mind ability that everyone possesses, has been misrepresented throughout the ages, keeping us in the dark. The truth is, is that for approximately 150 years, hypnosis has been used successfully in many different areas of medicine.

    In the mid to late 1800’s, medical doctors such as Dr. James Braid, Dr. Anton Mesmer and Dr. James Esdaile, studied and used hypnosis with fantastic results. Even Sigmund Freud was involved in the use of hypnosis. Hundreds of successful case studies, including surgeries with hypnotic anesthesia were documented and published in medical journals, yet we continue to remain ignorant regarding this incredible, natural ability.

    Fortunately, a new day is dawning and we find ourselves experiencing a wave of interest in alternative and complementary medicine, a more holistic understanding for personal wellness. In 1998, a bill was passed through Congress which established the National Center of
    Complimentary and Alternative Medicine, as an independent branch of the National Institute of Health. Its purpose is to prove or disprove the worth of many alternative approaches in medicine.

    Dr. Stephen Straus, the program director, is particularly interested in research of the mind-body connection. Hypnosis is currently being validated scientifically and medically as a useful tool in
    the practice of medicine.

    Since hypnosis is natural, everyone can learn to experience and benefit from it. Just as in learning anything new, you must have a desire to acquire knowledge and understanding. These new ideas provide experiences and feelings, which create a richer, more fulfilling life.

    For almost 20 years, Roberta has helped people experience incredible changes with hypnosis.

    Clients and students alike have successfully used hypnosis for many things including: Lowering blood pressure, sleeping better, changing negative habits of food, alcohol or cigarettes, creating natural anesthesia for pain control, promoting health, increasing self confidence, strengthening spirituality, enhancing athletic abilities, creating comfortable childbirth, as well as preparing for surgery with easier recovery.

    Hypnosis has also been used successfully to lessen the severity, and in many cases, has completely eliminated allergies, fears, panic attacks, stomach problems, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, motion sickness, skin problems and asthma .The reality is, hypnosis allows you to enter a world of unlimited potential. As you learn to access and direct your subconscious mind, you can direct your body, your thoughts, your feelings, your behaviors and your life, in new and positive directions.

    Join the many people who have achieved positive results with these natural mind abilities. You’ll be pleased with the quality and quantity of information that you’ll receive in Roberta’s self health
    book, Me, Myself and Mind. Regardless of your age, culture, or religious beliefs, you can acquire these natural skills.

    “As you learn to quiet your mind and your body, You can learn to help yourself. Here in this quiet place of being, you can create the perfect environment to support, stimulate, and direct Your body’s natural healing process.”
    ~Roberta A. Swartz

    You can also listen to my interview with Roberta on Inspiration Nation Radio where she talks more about how self hypnosis helps us with our health.

    And you can learn more about Roberta on her websites http://www.memyselfandmind.com or http://www.hypnosis4yourlife.com

    About Amethyst stone -Guest Blog Post by Margaret Ann Lembo

    Download PDF

    Transformation with Amethyst

    The power of this purple quartz crystal lends a hand to transform and transmute whatever you put your intention toward. Historically, this stone is known for its power to realign addictions and negative habits into good health and positive patterns. Amethyst adds an alchemical touch to challenging situations.

    During a journey with less than ideal traveling companions, I called on the amethyst vibration through visualization and intention and the amethyst bead necklace around my neck. Adding purple to my wardrobe and using the mystical energy of this colour and stone I surrounded myself with purple . It was as if I was within an amethyst sphere. My intention was that the rest of my trip would be pleasant and fun. In short order, my not-so-good friends decided to travel off on their own relieving me of their unpleasant company. I went on with loving friends and truly enjoyed by vacation.

    Utilize amethyst to transform bad dreams to good dreams, unpleasant situations into enjoyable times, and poor health into vibrant living through the use of visualization, intention and keeping an amethyst somewhere close by in your energy field. Amethyst helps you remember your dreams and signal your higher consciousness to relax enough to have a good night’s sleep. Keep an amethyst on your night stand or nearby your sleeping area to encourage insightful or prophetic dreams.

    This stone is perfect to invite the angelic vibes of Archangels Gabriel, Metatron, Raziel, Tzaphkiel, and Zadkiel. Work with amethyst when you are tuning into your own intuition as well as the frequency of these luminous beings of light to allow your channel to be clear.
    Attraction to this gemstone signals that you are ready to allow your intuitive gifts to the surface so you can use them in your daily life. It is possible to live a charmed life with the right color, beliefs and positive thoughts. Add the right gemstone and watch how your life transforms!

    Affirm and hold thoughts like these with amethyst in hand, on your finger in a ring, on a pendant around your neck or in your pocket:
    I create my reality. I can change my reality. It is easy for me to transform and transmute challenging situations. I use my intuition and follow my hunches. I easily access higher wisdom and knowledge.

    Margaret Ann Lembo is the author of Color Your Life with Crystals, Angel Gemstone Oracle Cards; Chakra Awakening; and The Essential Guide to Crystals, Minerals and Stones. She is a spiritual entrepreneur and practitioner, aromatherapist, and the owner of The Crystal Garden—a book store, gift store, and spiritual center.

    Poem of the Week: Green Light

    Download PDF

    This is another poem by my daughter Amanda. She started driving over summer and was just expressing how she viewed the roads.

    Green Light
    by Amanda Davis

    Open roads
    Lines separate directions
    Forward, backward
    In lanes, in life

    Where to go
    when there are two
    solid double yellow lines?

    No passing allowed
    Focus on the streets
    crossing at intersections

    Oppounirites, decisions,
    You can only go
    right on red

    But you can always go
    straight on green

    Wait for the red to
    fade and move on

    Guest Blog Post by Janet Thomas

    Download PDF

    Lemons, Lemonade & Life
    Three Simple Questions to Mobilize Self-Healing

    What if you operated under the assumption that everything you think and feel is okay?
    What if you considered that your thoughts and emotions are your friends?
    What if all you had to do to change something you struggle with is to figure out how it serves you?

    I remember when these questions were hypothetical to me, before I took the journey to explore them. And when they became real — when I accepted my thoughts and emotions, allowed my non-preferred situations to serve me, and befriended myself with sincerity – I changed my life. And, believe me, with decades of depression, victimization and obesity under my belt, my life needed changing!

    It can be challenging to open up your imagination, especially since we are conditioned to live in the “real world,” a world where the imagination seemingly has no place. However, I invite you to consider that by using your imagination — by venturing forth in new ways, by getting comfortable with being uncomfortable by opening up yourself to new possibilities – you can mobilize your ability to heal for real, FOR REAL, now, and thrive.

    So there they are. Three questions to consider that can allow your imagination to stir, and take you down a new path of self-understanding. As Paul Shepard once wrote, “There is a secret person undamaged in every individual.” Imagine what your life will feel like when you reconnect with your undamaged self. Just think about what it will feel like to blaze a new path within you that is paved with joy, understanding and celebration. Be willing to imagine existing comfortably and oh so wonderfully in your own skin.

    This is my positive wish for you. I wish for you the authentic knowingness of your own goodness to eclipse your constant and nagging thoughts to the contrary. I wish for you all of the joy your heart can bear. I wish for you abundance in ways that exceed your expectations. I wish for you the strength to know how complex and multifaceted you are, and how deserving you are of love. I wish for you that unwavering connection to your undamaged self, and the creativity and adventure that life becomes within that connection. Be willing to imagine it now.

    Guest blog post by author & holistic healer Joan Jacobs: Who are you going to listen to if you aren’t going to listen to yourself

    Download PDF

    Who Should We Be Listening To When We Listen To Ourselves?

    Language is often used in a metaphoric way, even though it can be very confusing. The term “listening to oneself” is a good example.

    It took me a while to realize that when people are advised to “listen to themselves” they expect to hear voices. How logical! I found that many were turned off because of the association “hearing voices” has with mental disease. Others were just plain disappointed because all they could actually hear is the mumbling of their abdomen digesting food.

    In practicality, listening to oneself has nothing to do with sound but rather with sensation.

    Let’s first clarify who the “Self” is.
    The Self is an immaterial being. You can’t see the Self on X-ray, ultra-sound or MRI imaging. The self does not reside in one specific place in the body and can’t be detected using any type of modern technology. The Self is an energy entity that resides parallel to the physical body but not in one specific location.

    Different traditions associate the Self with different body areas such as the heart, the abdomen or the third eye but these are only symbolic reference points. The Self is actually everywhere.

    Learning The Language Of The Self.

    The energy body is held within the physical body. The Self conveys information through the physical body, using the nervous system as its carrier.

    When we interact with other energies, meaning other people, places or situations, the Self automatically responds and lets us know if these energies are pleasant or unpleasant, compatible or incompatible and does so by either relaxing or contracting muscles.

    When we interact with energies that are pleasant and compatible to ours, the body relaxes. When we interact with energies that are unpleasant or incompatible to ours -the body contracts.

    The body’s language of relaxation and contraction is the most reliable source of information regarding what supports us and what doesn’t and can be used to give insight to issues in all life realms.

    If something causes your body to contract- you should do your best to avoid it. If something causes your body to relax you can be sure that whatever it is – it’s good for you.

    Refining Your Self-Listening Skills

    Following is an exercise for articulating the sensation of relaxation verses contraction.
    Sit quietly, close your eyes and allow your body to relax. Focus on the center of your diaphragm and notice how it feels at the beginning of the exercise. Be with this sensation for a few minutes.

    Now think about someone who significantly upsets you and use your imagination to bring his or her image into the center of your diaphragm. Notice how this image affects your body.

    Once you have noticed the affect, allow the image to disperse and re-focus your breathing as at the beginning of the exercise.

    Once the diaphragm area has returned to the initial sensation, think about someone you love dearly. Use your imagination and bring his or her image into the center of your diaphragm and notice how this image affects your body.

    Once you have noticed the affect, allow the image to disperse and re-focus your breathing. Continue to sit quietly allowing your body to relax for a few more minutes and then end the exercise and open your eyes.

    Most likely you will have noticed that the upsetting image caused contraction and the loving image caused relaxation.

    For the most part everyday life causes distractions that prevent us from noticing these fine sensations. Many people are so contracted, they have a hard time noticing the difference. In these cases I recommend you practice as described above and just keep at it until the sensations become clearer. Practice does make perfect.

    Tuning into body sensations and using them as a means to determine how the people and events of our life affect us is the true meaning of listening to our-self.

    Poem: Happy Grandparents Day

    Download PDF

    Just a short poem to celebrate Grandparents Day–

    Oh, what delight we get
    to be a part of your presence
    and the sheer joy that is met
    because love comes from your essence
    You can always find open arms
    And smiles come abound
    Being with you we know no harm
    Will come and love is the sound
    In your heart and soul
    So for this day and all in the year
    We wish you a
    Happy Grandparents Day

    Poem of the Week: Flashlight

    Download PDF

    This is a poem my daughter Amanda wrote. She was inspired to write through her love of juxtaposition. She just recently began poetry.

    by Amanda Davis

    Wise owls rest on the branches of a dumb forest
    Unclean dishes lie alone in a pristine apartment
    Flashlights break through the dark night
    To lead the way of the confused
    The misguided
    The ghosts of the once hopeful
    The girls, boys lied to
    The children abandoned
    The lives forgotten
    But artificial light rarely is enough
    When the hurt corrodes the batteries
    Acid melted rose petals
    Poison and thorns corrupt the pure
    Dark conceals white color
    “Goodness, it’s hard to see without a good flashlight”
    Shine Freely

    Guest Post: The Top Five Ways To Discover Your Bliss By Edie Weinstein

    Download PDF

    The Top 5 Ways to Discover Your Bliss by Edie Weinstein

    What does bliss mean to you? For some it indicates a sense of giddiness, sprinkled with faerie dust, over the moon excited like a kid on a pogo stick. For others, it calls to mind a state of peace and ease, internal tranquility, as if being gently carried downstream. Whatever your vision
    of this exquisite feeling, wouldn’t it be nice to have at the ready, a portable tool kit so that you could BYOB-Be Your Own Bliss? I have found that when people are happy, they are able to be a greater force for good in the world. Are you ready to fill your kit?

    1. Take a moment to connect with your breath; that necessary element that animates your body. Place one hand on your heart and the other on your belly as you feel the life force energy surge through you. Imagine it as a perpetual source of strength to ferry you through your day. Feel the
    steady drumbeat rhythm of your heart. Any time stressful or challenging experiences come your way, bring yourself back to this moment.

    2. As James Taylor sings “Shower the people your love with love.” They are in your life for mutual support, benefit, delight and enrichment. Hard to contemplate a time when they weren’t there, so let them know how much they mean to you. Words, actions and hugs all are powerful ways to communicate those feelings.

    3. What is your passion and purpose? It is whatever lights you up from the inside and turns you into a human sparkler. Is there something you ‘can’t not do?’ It is writing that enraptures me, such that it is one of the first things I do to begin my day and one of the last things I
    do to complete it. Are there interests that you haven’t pursued, or some that you have let fall by the wayside that you now want to scoop back up and embrace?

    4. An attitude of gratitude goes a long way. Consider your many blessings and say them aloud, write them down, dance them to life. We are so accustomed to taking them for granted. Instead, express thanks in advance for the blessings that surround you and those that have not yet arrived.

    5. Love the woman or man in the mirror with such depth of appreciation that you sometimes feel like your heart will burst out of your chest. I know that this can be the most challenging of all, since we carry with us years of conditioning that tell us it isn’t appropriate to do that. I promise you that once you peel off the layers of protection or
    illusion, what you will see in the shining eyes that gaze back at you, will simply dazzle you.

    Edie Weinstein was my lovely bliss-FUL guest on Inspiration Nation Radio last week. In cased you missed it you can listen to it now – click on the link to Inspiration Nation. To learn more about Edie and her blissful work, you can go to her website, Live In Joy.

    Guest Post: 10 Steps for Overcoming Adversities in Life by Sue London

    Download PDF

    Guest Post: 10 Steps for Overcoming Adversities

    Sue London knows about overcoming adversities as through her life she has been through childhood bullying, a long journey with a chronic disease (Crohns’), a divorce, and a near death experience.

    She shares her 10 Steps for Overcoming Adversities:

    1. A Strong Determination
    You can create more good days then bad days in your life! You have the choice. Start each morning just before hopping out of bed and say, “It’s going to be a fantastic day! I’m going to be productive and successful in everything that I do!” Don’t let things hold you back. Let your strong determination kick into gear.
    2. Stop Worrying
    Worrying is a huge waste of time and energy. What you put your focus on, you will attract! Always ask yourself… can I do something about this? If you can, then do it. If you can’t, then forget about it and let nature take its course.
    3. Let Go
    In order to move forward you must let go of negativity. Once released, you’re able to move on faster and succeed more easily. Let go of your negative emotions by writing total truth letters. Clear your clutter and discard items that hold negative memories. Toss items that are broken. Donate all unused items. Keep your space clean.
    4. Visualization
    If you see it, believe it, then you will achieve it! Visualization is a powerful technique for attracting your goals. Visualize your peaceful place! Visualize living the life you desire.
    5. Positive Attitude
    A positive attitude is so important. What we think becomes our reality. If you think of doom and gloom and disaster that is exactly what you will get. Be positive; believe that things will work out well. Through a positive attitude, you can take your focus off the bad and you will see all the opportunities to move forward. A positive attitude will give you the strength to overcome sadness, move away from fear and awaken the power with you!
    6. Smile
    Smile at the people you meet. Smiling makes you look positive and more importantly, makes you feel positive. Your smile will make someone’s day and that can be very healing for you both!
    7. Be Accountable
    Find someone to be accountable to, set goals and go after your dreams.
    8. Be Grateful
    Keep a daily journal of all the things you are grateful for and watch the abundance come your way!
    9. Get A Pet
    Having a pet in your life is very healing. Animals comfort us through unconditional love, and they ease our pain. Animals give us strength and the courage to keep going. Bring an animal into your life and watch how healing it is for you also!
    10. Change The Way You Look At Things
    Change the way you look at things and the things you look at will change. Stress is not caused by a person or a situation. It is caused by our reaction to the person or the situation. When you accept that things happen for a reason you react better. Always look for the lesson to be learned.

    Copyright Sue London 2013 . All rights reserved. Sue London is the Award Winning Host & Executive Producer of Get Inspired Radio. Sue is the Author of “Soar Above It All – Overcoming Adversities in Life”, “Rocky’s Trip To The Hospital” and “Rocky’s Positive Thoughts Coloring Book”. Sue is a Trainer, and Motivational Speaker. Sue London can be reached at getinspiredradio@gmail.com. To learn more about Sue London please visit www.AskSueLondon.com

    If you missed it, you can listen to my interview with Sue London on Inspiration Nation.

    Use Universe Energy to Boost Creativity & Writing

    Download PDF

    Just recently there was a full moon (July 22nd) when the moon’s energy is so powerful. However, there is energy, universal energy, a part of our world every day. And us as humans have a energy that we can use to navigate and help create or manifest things in our lives. I’m not saying that your instantly going to create your dream home or your favorite sports car, HOWEVER, you can help in the creation of making those things a possibility by using your powerful thoughts and actions of who you are and those around you.

    In the video, I also share a few tools you can do to create and start envisioning a more positive world around you to boost creativity and writing by using the universe energy which you are a part of all the time.

    What things have you created or see a change in from changing your energy or by working with the universal energy in the world?

    Poem of the Week – Summer Celebration

    Download PDF

    Poem of the Week – Summer Celebration

    In honor of the summer solstice I wrote the following poem:

    The circular pathway
    Welcoming us beachside bungalow
    Built from the crushed bit of shells
    And I hear them burst under the weight of the
    Tires slowly rolling over them
    Others come to retreat enticed by the
    Warmer climate, billowing clouds, palm and citrus trees .

    Only here for a short time, you come to be near those
    Exuding comfort, acceptance and joy
    An eruption of smiles, giggles, hugs and laughter
    greet the sisters, cousins, fathers, daughters, mothers,
    in laws, sons and brothers as we break the thresh hold of this summer getaway.

    The embrace of the scent of salty water that cradles a boat and caresses the seawall that divides the water and the lush green grass housing an arrangement of pink, red and yellow flowers snuggling the quaint abode.

    Chatter fills the air as love come from each of our mouths soothing the souls of those who are sending and receiving the eloquence of words spoken and of others only heard in silence.

    We become soldiers in a sort of brigade falling effortlessly in line chopping, shredding, peeling, mixing, stirring . The dance continues as the array of delicious morsels are displayed on a crisp white table cloth awaiting the race to begin.

    A feast of sorts, I like to call delicious living.

    As we seat together with empty plates and full bellies, the talk of celebration runs into games of guessing, clues and miming and the roar of laughter is embraced by all who sit among the cozy overstuffed pillows plunked on the floor.

    I wish I could hold time still as I look around at all the smiles, cheers and happiness that blossomed from the collective as each of us have made the choice to be together at this place, this time, creating these unforgettable blissful moments on this glorious beautiful priceless summer day.

    How to Get Rid of Anger

    Download PDF

    This week I wanted to share with you about an emotion all of us have felt several times in our life but most of us don’t know how to try to work to get rid of it.

    We feel that it is just a part of life and while that is true to a certain extent, anger does not have to stay in and control our lives.

    This video I share with you some tips that will help you understand why you are anger and how to rid yourself of anger.

    Please feel free to share your experiences, tips, strategies and stories of how you have handled or dealt with anger.

    Inspiration Nation TV: How to Beat Overwhelm

    Download PDF

    Inspiration Nation TV: One Way to Help Beat Overwhelm

    I have wanted to get back to doing video blogs and here is my first one in a while. This video series will be titled “Inspiration Nation TV” as my purpose is to help create a nation of inspiration through the world of words.

    This week I wanted to share a inspirational tip about something that can help you when you are overwhelmed and frustrated with either your life–personal or business.

    Please let me know and share with me how you have used writing or other methods to help you beat overwhelm.

    Inspiration Nation – Part 2 with Jean Adrienne Miller, author of Power Tools

    Download PDF

    Part 2 with Author Jean Adrienne Miller, author of Power Tools, The Ultimate Owner’s Manual to Personal Empowerment on Inspiration Nation with host Teresa Morrow

    Whoohoo! I am super excited this week I get to share with you a continued conversation with Jean Adrienne Miller.

    She will share with listeners about her Inner Speak program that has helped thousands of people find the obstacles and limited beliefs that have stopped them from living their best selves and how to transform that in their lives.

    She also reveals whom “The Beings of Now” are in her life and how they help her with her work.

    I was thrilled to be able to bring you more of Jean’s insight, knowledge and inspiration to give you the power tools to help you in your life.

    I hope you enjoy this continued conversation with Jean and I.

    If you missed last week’s conversation on Book Talk, you can listen to it at Creating Calm Network and then be sure to follow it by listening starting at 10 am when Ann White offers her book review and then Ginger Dawn shares and then I will be on at 10:30amET with Part 2 of my conversation with Jean Adrienne Miller, author of Power Tools.
    With the music interludes by the talented, Jeff Gold.

    You can pick up your copy of Power Tools: The Ultimate Owner’s Guide to Personal Empowerment on Amazon and you can learn more about Jean on her website, Jean Adrienne.com.


    Inspiration Tip: Connection & Conversations

    Download PDF

    Connection & Conversations: Back to the Basics Marketing Tip

    Today we have the capability to connect with people easier than ever, however, I find that the lack of really connecting with another person seems to be too common. If you have the opportunity to connect directly with someone, go for it. I’ve always said, when you don’t do it, you are choosing the answer to be “no”. If you decide to try, you open up the answer to change to a “yes”.

    What I mean by that is —don’t be afraid to contact someone either by email, phone or social media if you wish to connect with them.

    There are some “rules”:
    1) When connecting, share with them the reason why you are connecting with them.
    2) Be authentic to yourself and to the conversation.
    3) Don’t force a connection or conversation. If they don’t reciprocate, don’t worry. Allow the connection to happen when and if it is supposed to happen.

    Here’s an example I will share with you:
    Just yesterday, I had been online and was looking up the website for a radio show interview I will be doing later on today. Once on the website, this lady, Janet was hosting her show, Anger 911. Talk about a topic that resonates with me. This is a topic I share in my latest book, DISOWNED: A Journey of Transformation from Abandonment to Healing.

    As I listened to Janet Pfieffer and her poignant advice on anger and how you can allow it to rule your life and you can diminish it from your life. I decided to go on her website and check out her work. As I read about her, I noticed she had been on such shows as The 700 Club, LifeTime, CBN News and her latest book, The Great Truth, was endorsed by Marci Shimoff, author of Happy for No Reason and published by Balboa Press.

    She had mentioned her book, The Secret Side of Anger and I thought, she would be a great guest on my show, Inspiration Nation. I decided on the spot to send her an email asking her if she would like to be a guest on Inspiration Nation.
    When I find someone online that resonates with me, I then try to be sure I stay connected with what they are doing online.

    I went to Facebook and I sent a friend request with a personal message stating how I found her and why I would like to connect with her.

    Her show had ended and I got a “bing” from Facebook that she was on chat. She was online and connected with me within minutes! In her FB message, she said had sent me an email. She thanked me and accepted the invite to be on my show. YAY!
    I went to my email and then she had invited me to chat on the phone with her. WHOOHOO!

    For me, I hadn’t thought all of this would be happening, I reached out and got not only a almost instant positive response, but then she invited me to chat on the phone!

    Janet and I had a lovely conversation and it was a great opportunity to get to know each other better. Solid connection and the start of a lasting supportive mutual relationship with a like minded spiritual person.

    Thanks Janet!

    Don’t be scared to reach out and ask for a connection with someone—you may just get many blessings in return!

    I would love to hear your stories of connections you’ve had online? Please share.

    Poem of the Week – Moments

    Download PDF

    Dictating this moment
    Can’t be done
    As it has been set
    through the universe
    birthed out of your thoughts
    emerged by your intentions
    from the yesterdays

    But now
    in this moment
    you are incarnating
    a new moment
    Of the tomorrows

    You hold the power
    Build and create moments
    Filling life
    With love
    and Inspiration

    For if you give it
    You will receive it
    Don’t fret
    Over the noise
    That surrounds you
    But embrace the
    light that is waiting
    To become a part of you
    ~Teresa Morrow

    Inspiration Nation with Jean Adrienne, author of Power Tools

    Download PDF

    Author Jean Adrienne, author of Power Tools is guest on Inspiration Nation, part of Book Talk on Creating Calm Network

    If you are reader of different and various types of books, you will enjoy tomorrow’s Book Talk, part of Creating Calm Network.

    Ann White – a confessed book jones follows up on her discussion of Stephanie Bond’s Body Mover series and reviews Tom Schreck’s Duffy Dombroski series.

    The Legendary Ginger Dawn Harman, our West Virginia Housewife and Book Blogger Supreme tackles the moving story in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. Henrietta was a poor tobacco worker who’s cells were taken from her without her knowledge and today are the cause of great scientific and medical discoveries while she lies forgotten in her grave.

    And on Inspiration Nation, Teresa Morrow interviews Jean Adrienne, author of Power Tools – an owner’s manual for personnal improvement. When we settle for less than what we truly desire, we are compromising and that sets up wounds for us to clear. Learn more about healing and uplifting your life during this interview.

    Musical interludes by Jeff Gold.

    Listen to it now in case you missed it or even if you wish to listen to it again —Book Talk, Creating Calm Network

    Inspired Exercise – Change is inevitable. Yoga and Meditation can Help

    Download PDF

    Jenn Givler at Blended Yoga offers a stress relief yoga sequence when dealing with Change

    Change is a part of life. No matter how much we try to stop it, move around it, get ahead of it, figure it out, it always seems to surprise us when we least expect it.

    My friend, Jenn Givler, owner of Blended Yoga, published this vlog (video blog) yesterday on change and I thought I would share it with you.

    Inspiration comes in all forms—yoga many times has allowed me to center me, ground me, and bring me back to myself. Whether a minor and dramatic change, this yoga sequence can help you & I, get back in touch with our bodies and mind. When you and I become more centered, we can take on life challenges (or change) much easier.

    Thanks Jenn for providing this to us.

    Jenn Givler Blended Yoga video blog post on Change

    Inspired Author Interview: Rachel Frank, author of Stress the Silent Killer

    Download PDF

    Author Rachel Frank, author of Stress the Silent Killer

    I had the pleasure of meeting Rachel while networking online and when I read about her book, I knew I wanted to share her work and book with you.

    Please share about your background (where you were born, where you grew up, siblings/family dynamic, career background , where you live now, etc.)

    I was born in Rochester, NY and grew up in a tiny historic village called Scottsville. I will put it to you this way we had one street light, could walk the perimeter of the town in under and hour, and our McDonald’s closed down after only
    a few months because it could not get enough business!
    I am an only child, but I am very close to my oldest cousin. He was referred to as my weekend brother when we were growing up. I am incredibly close with my parents and extended family and feel very blessed for that. I married my high school
    sweetheart after my freshman year of college. He has just graduated from Army Basic Training so within 2 weeks of being married we moved to Hawaii. We lived there for nine years and are currently living in SC where he is now a Drill Sergeant. It’s nice to be back in the same time zone as our family!
    I originally started out as an IT major in college, because this is what my father, uncle, and grandfather all went to college for. I even attended the same university! However, it was clear to me that this was so not me. I ended up
    taking several years off of school when we got married, just not knowing what I really wanted to do. Then around age 20, I was treated with cognitive behavior therapy for chronic pain
    from a back injury I suffered at age 14. I was so shocked that I could manage that level of pain without having to be doped up on narcotic painkillers, which I detested taking. It was then that I realized I wanted to pursue psychology.
    Currently I am completing my doctoral dissertation in health psychology and I am a board certified holistic health practitioner with the AADP. I plan to continue writing self help books and teaching workshops online and in person to help people manage stress and chronic pain naturally.

    When did you begin your writing journey?
    My writing journey began in earnest in the Fall of 2012. This is when I was starting to question what I really wanted to do with my degree. However, I can recall sitting in my room when I was 11 years old typing away at my father’s old laptop computer, with DOS, green text, and huge floppy disks, thinking I was going to write a novel. Then those dreams faded away, because the world trains us to think we cannot make money with creative endeavors. Now as an adult, I am
    realizing that I have a deep passion and drive to be creative and that YES I can make a living out of this. It was a liberating feeling. I don’t want to or feel I need to fit into the mold of “psychologist” just because that is my formal
    training. I need to pursue what makes my heart soar and that is being creative, writing, and teaching others.

    What inspired you to write this book?

    I was inspired to write Stress the Silent Killer because, well, stress is on my brain right now! My masters thesis was on meditation for stress management and my doctoral dissertation is on stress management among Army spouses. Seeing how much stress there is around us, how many people struggle with stress, and the instant jump towards medication as a “treatment,” I knew I needed to write my book to help
    people naturally and permanently manage stress.

    Please share about your latest book.

    Stress the Silent Killer is about how to naturally manage stress. I provide a five week program designed to help people form new healthy habits, thought patterns, and
    experiences around things that cause them stress. In the book I teach meditation, the law of attraction, how food impacts mood, using sleep to improve mood, and the basics of aromatherapy for stress management. As an added bonus, I included two meditation audios that were created for past clients of mine dealing with stress, anxiety, panics attacks, and insomnia. The book beings with an overview of stress and how it can negatively impact mental and physical health. Then the techniques are described, each includes a case study
    from past clients. The end of the book provides a step by step five week program with additional exercises and areas for notes and goal setting. This book is designed to be manageable and allow people to form new healthy habits that will help them with current and future stress.

    What are some takeaways you would like your reader to get from reading your book?
    I want people to realize that they do not need to endure stress and that using medications for stress management is only a bandaid. I would like my readers to walk away feeling better about their life and themselves. Being able to effect
    change in your life can be empowering and help build confidence and self worth.

    What is your advice to beginning writers?

    I would like to tell beginning writers to keep their chin up and their fingers moving. There will be days that are challenging and people that will not always get what you want to do. But, if this is your passion then you need to keep
    plowing ahead. Talk to other writers, join local or online groups for support, and explain to loved ones what this means to you. If you write with support and passion behind your words, your reads will be able to sense this and your writing
    will come off as genuine.

    Most writers are readers. What books are on your “to-read” list?
    Right now is Second Stone book #2 in the Souls of Stones Series by Kelly Walker is at the top of my queue. I am reading the first book in the series, Cornerstone, and absolutely cannot put it down. YA fiction is my guilty pleasure and I hope to write my own someday soon 😉

    Where can readers find out more about you and your book? (add in blog/website/social media links)
    Official Author Website: http://www.AuthorRachel.com
    Writing/ Book Blog: http://www.IndieBookCorner.com
    Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/rachelfrank
    Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/authorrachel
    YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/authorrachelfrank
    Facebook http://www.facebook.com/happyhealthcoach
    Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/authorrachel

    Question for fun sake—what is your favorite color and why?
    My all time favorite color has to be purple! It is such an inviting, calming, and spiritual color. It always soothes me and at the same time can provide me with inspiration.

    Poem of the Week – Getting Clear

    Download PDF

    Poem of the Week by Teresa Morrow

    Images get disjointed
    Thoughts are interrupted
    by fear and doubt

    The whisper of an intention
    being birthed
    with Divine Purpose
    to allow new ideas

    But your vision is being compromised
    by the broken lens you are seeing
    the world through

    You think the picutre you see is the truth
    but your ego is blinding you from
    who you are

    It’s your time
    in this moment
    Take hold of a new vision

    Set your intentions
    and open your eyes
    looking outward from
    your inner power
    Guided by your spirit
    and God

    Push away the doubt
    realize fear has no place here
    See clear the path
    in front of you
    toward your true purpose

    Inspiration Nation Radio show with Heidi Cowie, author of Touch the Whale

    Download PDF

    Heidi Cowie, author of Touch the Whale guest on Inspiration Nation part of Book Talk on Creating Calm Network

    This week on Inspiration Nation, I am joined by Heidi Cowie, author of Touch the Whale.


    I have previously done a book spotlight on Heidi’s book but I got the opportunity to interview Heidi on the story of swimming with the whales, her writing journey. She also shares tips on how self limiting thoughts keep us from living our dreams.

    During the interview Heidi even shows me a self limiting thought about money, I didn’t realize where it may have come from.

    You can listen to the interview tomorrow on Creating Calm Network.

    Support an Author Month – Spread the Word

    Download PDF

    For writers, authors and poets, we are all constantly looking for others who will want to read our writing. And we know how hard it can be to do this, so getting the support of our fellow writers, authors and poets is always a blessing.
    I found this awesome blog post by Cate Russell Cole that focus on giving and sharing—-SUPPORT an AUTHOR MONTH.

    When I saw this I thought, “what a cool idea!” so I wanted to help spread the word.

    Here are the guidelines:

    Find a blog or website of a writer, author or poet you like. Leave a comment on their blog or share the link of their blog or website on social media. Offer a few words to your followers about this writer, author or poet that you enjoy.

    To read more about SUPPORT an AUTHOR MONTH, here is Cate Russell Cole’s blog post.

    Let’s spread the writing love with others!

    I wanted to add a twist to the guidelines so I have shared the links of a few indie authors I know along with their websites and/or Facebook links:

    Karen Pierce Gonzalez, author of Family Folktales and Black Pepper Visions/Folkheart Press

    FB: FolkheartPress

    Ann White, author of Living with Spirit Energy and Code Red!
    FB:Ann White/Creating Calm Network

    Tina Games, author of Journaling by the Moonlight
    FB: Tina Games

    Elena Jones, author of 7 Simple Steps to Creating Your Intentions/Alma Quest
    FB: Elena Jones

    Ricky Roberts III, author of Where did the Gift Go?, You! and
    FB: Ricky Roberts III

    Marion Witte, author of Little Madhouse on the Prairie and Wise Women Collection: The No-Regrets Bucket List
    FB: Marion Witte

    Heidi Cowie, author of Touch the Whale
    FB: Heidi Cowie


    Share the writing and supportive love!

    Poetry for the Week – Music Sweetness

    Download PDF

    The melody echoes in the air
    A piano and violin dance
    with charm and grace
    In the creation of beauty only
    known within its notes
    The pause of sound then
    crescendo emphasis
    The mission of the instruments
    is to breed emotion
    oh what sweet sounds it shares
    with the world
    ~ Teresa Morrow

    Author Spotlight with Pat Montgomery – author of The Patriot Parent

    Download PDF

    Interview with Pat Montgomery, author of Patriot Parent

    Please share about your background (where you were born, where you grew up, siblings/family dynamic, career background , where you live now, etc.)

    I grew up moving around the country with my parents and my sister. Due to my dad’s job, we never lived in one place more than 4 years. Today I treasure that because I saw so many things and met so many different kinds of people, but then it was hard—especially for a teenager!

    After my mother MADE me spend a summer as a Candy Striper in the local hospital (thanks, Mom) I made the decision that I wanted to be a nurse and have held a license now for 39 years. It was a great career and, when I turned into a single mom, I was able to care for my children on my own.

    When I married my current husband, I left that career and we began a railroad consulting business with him. It has had its ups and downs but was a good chance for me to spread my wings and take a chance.

    My writing career is my avocation. There is nothing like sitting alone and letting the words flow out of you—it is like they have a life of their own.

    When did you begin your writing journey?

    I dreamed of writing the great American novel when I was a child, but didn’t take writing seriously until I wanted to make a list for my children of the things I did well and things I could have done better when raising them. I wanted them to learn from my experiences so when they had their own, it would be easier for them. That list grew until it was my first book, Now You Know What I Know: Parenting Wisdom of a Grandmother which was published in 2005.

    What inspired you to write this book?
    The tragedy of 9/11 made all of us think and I was no exception. It was what made me consider that I might not be here to help my kids when they became parents and I wanted to leave something for them—to share a little wisdom with them.

    Please share about your latest book.

    My latest published book is The Patriot Parent: Still the
    Best Hope for America. I looked around me and saw kids being sent home from school for wearing shirts with American flags on them, schools refusing to play the National Anthem, celebrities in a viral video pledging allegiance to a president instead of the country. It scared me. Sound familiar? So I decided to help parents help their children to understand why and how this country was founded and how exceptional it is. Not only does The Patriot Parent give parents the steps they need to take, but it also contains essays, documents such as the Declaration of Independence, and the words to patriotic songs that can be used as a starting off place for American families.

    How did you decide to publish this book? Why?

    I originally published it as an ebook, but then due to numerous requests, I updated it, changed a few things, and added more content and made it a paperback.

    What is the best advice you have received about writing?

    “Just start writing.” I was told to sit down and just start to write down my ideas, not worrying if they are in order or even in paragraphs. I found that to be true. As I wrote ideas, they flowed into sentences, then paragraphs, then chapters. It is magical what happens when you release that energy in your brain and get out of your own way.

    What is your advice to beginning writers?

    Not to give up. Write a blog, write articles, write a novel…just don’t stop writing. It is a muscle that needs to be exercised to operate at a maximum level. And believe in yourself. Stephen King kept writing even though no one would publish him—unitl they did. Jack Canfield got turned down everywhere he turned for his idea about the Chicken Soup books. Believe in yourself like they did and don’t quit.

    Most writers are readers. What books are on your “to-read” list?

    I just read King’s book, 11/22/63—amazing concept and great read. I recommend it to everyone.
    I am looking forward to new Vince Flynn book coming out this spring—love the action and his writing style. Also the new Dan Brown book sounds good and I have loved his other ones.
    But I also read biographies and books about American history. My bookshelf is pretty eclectic.

    Where can readers find out more about you and your book?
    (add in blog/website/social media links)

    Below are the links to my websites (which include my blogs) and social media sites.

    Facebook: I can be found under Parents Rule and The Patriot Parent
    Twitter: I am ParentsRule http://www.twitter.com/parentsrule
    You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/parentsrule1

    You are bringing back your blog talk radio show, Parents Rule! Please share more about that.

    Thanks so much for asking!

    Parents Rule! was on the air in Atlanta for 5 years then I decided to pull back and just do the blogs and You Tube. A few months ago I received an opportunity to bring Parents Rule! back but in only internet form and I could do it from home. After much thought, I agreed to do it and now I am really excited about this new venture. The first show airs on March 21 ( and then every Thursday) 3-4 pm on http://www.w4cyradio.com on the Intertainment Network.

    Question for fun sake—what was your favorite childhood meal and why?

    I am not sure if you are looking for a specific food or an event but here is my answer, which has both. My dad’s family has a family reunion every year and we would always come into town for it (we only got there once a year). He is one of 10 children, not to mention the many cousins. When I was little the men used to cook a hog over a pit all night, then pull the meat off the bone and that was the basis for our reunion meal. My dad let me come with him and listen to the stories the men told about their adventures and their exaggerated fish tales. It was great to be included. Then at the reunion, I had so many uncles, aunts, and cousins to hang around and I looked forward to it all year.

    Inspiration Nation has Stephanie Gunning as guest

    Download PDF

    Stephanie Gunning, author of The Writer’s Book of Inspiration is guest on Inspiration Nation

    Super excited to have Stephanie Gunning as my guest on Inspiration Nation, my show in the line up on Thursday’s program Book Talk, part of Creating Calm Network.

    I hope you will take some time and listen to Book Talk starting at 10amET tomorrow, Thursday, April 25th, with fellow book lover and blogger, Ginger Dawn as she shares an inspirational book review or interview to lift your spirit. Then on Inspiration Nation at around 10:30am, you will hear as Stephanie reveals her inspiration for her latest book, The Writer’s Book of Inspiration. She also offer some useful tips knowledge about the publishing industry (as she used to work as the acquisitions editor at Harper Collins).

    When I saw the title of her book, ‘The Writer’s Book of Inspiration’ (I caught it on a social media feed, I believe it was Linked In, but could have been Facebook), I connected with Stephanie immediately because it was just the perfect fit for the show.

    I hope you enjoy the interview with Stephanie Gunning as much I did. It was a true joy having her a part of the show.

    You can also follow the Creating Calm Network on Facebook.

    More about Stephanie:
    Stephanie Gunning is a bestselling author, editor, and publishing consultant specializing primarily in books on the topics of health, spirituality, personal growth, and new thought. Her creative endeavors are dedicated to individual empowerment and the conscious evolution of humankind. “Working with visionary thinkers gives me an advanced education in human potential,” Stephanie says. “Each day they inspire me to contribute my own talents and message to the world, as best as I am able.” You can find out more about Stephanie on her website Stephanie Gunning.com.

    Conversation about Abandonment and Disownment

    Download PDF

    I wanted to start a conversation about the words, abandonment and disownment.

    Even though I hadn’t thought about it for many years, I realized that I felt abandoned from my mom after she died when I was six years old. That was because I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye and didn’t really understand what was going on with her and the her illness of cancer. But she didn’t abandon me. She left because something beyond her control took her from this Earth. It was time for her to go.

    But the real hit to me was when I was almost thirty years old when my dad disowned me from the family for dating an African American man.

    It’s was hard for me to wrap my head around such a blunt ultimatum from my dad. First, I was in shock. Then tons of questions swarmed in my mind. Then I got angry and I wanted to force him to change his mind. Then I realized I need to let go. Then I found out how I could be happy even if I wasn’t in my family. Then I did my work on my past to heal me. Then I fell in love with me. Then I allowed love from my honey. Then it was about forgiveness. And about healing. For me and the others in my life.

    I would like to begin a dialogue around the subject of disownment, broken relationships, abandonment but more importantly the healing aspects of these experiences.

    What was the hardest part for you around abandonment or disownment?

    Healing from Broken Trust: A Journey of Transformation is OUT!

    Download PDF

    Yes, I’m doing the happy dance once again!

    My book, DISOWNED: A Journey of Transformation from Abandonment to Healing is now out on Kindle!

    More about the book:

    Are you trying to heal from a broken relationship as a result from a disownment or abandonment?
    We all want to be a part of a collective group of people that accepts us for who we are no matter what comes up in our lives. If those treasured relationships become strained to the point of abandonment or disownment, it can leave a person with a trail of unresolved emotions affecting our personal, professional and spiritual lives.

    In this book, DISOWNED: A Journey of Transformation from Abandonment to Healing, author & poet Teresa Morrow, shares her experiences toward healing after her father disowned her for dating an older man from another race. Devastated by the disownment, she chronicles her journey going through the stages of grief where she discovered new things about herself she never knew existed; self-love, courage and support within herself.
    While going through her journey of transformation, Author Teresa Morrow discovered she needed to heal her past of failed relationships and the beliefs she was taught growing up to find her true self; immerse herself in self-love in order to grow and heal from the disownment from her father. She also guides the reader through a set of inspired action exercises after each chapter assisting the reader to help work through and toward his or her own healing.
    When you are in a state of abandonment resulting from being separated from a loved one, you are overwhelmed with a rollercoaster of emotions. Working through the stages of grief you can begin to define a new sense of self and find the way toward healing yourself and possibly the broken relationship.
    Even if it has been years since a relationship has been broken, you can heal from it starting today. Even if the broken relationship does not resolve itself, the person can be at a better healthier place within themselves which will enable the person to develop more successful relationships with others going forward in their lives.

    You can pick up your copy on Amazon.

    Inspiration Nation Radio Show on Blog Talk Radio

    Download PDF

    I am super excited to be a part of the Creating Calm Network with a program called Book Talk and my show, Inspiration Nation!

    In cased you missed the first episode, I shared a review of Karen Pierce Gonzalez’s book,“>Family Folktales.

    Don’t forget to catch Ginger Dawn at 10 o’clock on Book Talk too on Thursdays.

    You can hear Inspiration Nation at 10:30am Book Talk on Creating Calm Network.

    And this week, book review of Ricky Roberts III book, Where Did the Gift Go?

    List of scheduled shows on Creating Calm Network:
    Monday Morning Coffee
    10am Ann White – Creating Calm within Chaos
    10:30 Tomar Levine – Soul Guidance
    11am Kimberly Burnham – The Nerve Whisperer
    11:30am Ruth Crone – Being You
    Music provided by Rebecca Zapen

    Wake UP! to Wonder filled Wednesdays
    10am – Nadya Schubert – Notes from Spirit
    10:30am – Linda Crawford – The Groovy Goddess
    11am – Maeve Crawford – The Soulmate Catalyst
    11:30am – Gail Browning – The Gem Maven
    Music provided by Cymber Lily Quinn

    Also, if you are a inspirational, motivational, or spiritual author and would like to be interviewed, please contact me.

    The Topic of Abandonment & Disownment

    Download PDF

    When I thought about the word abandonment, it brought up the feeling of being alone. Then the words, “one day your in, one day your out” popped in my head and I saw Heidi Klum standing on the runway on the show Project Runway telling this to the fashion design hopefuls.

    No one likes to get the jolt of being told they are no longer included in the circle of people they once thought of as close—friends or family. That feeling of standing all alone with no one to support you, guide you, encourage you. What do you do?

    In my upcoming book, DISOWNED: A Journey of Transformation from Abandonment to Healing, I share my story around being disowned and what happened as a result of it.

    I would love to hear your stories about how you got through your abandonment or disownment…what was the catalyst to bring on the disownment or abandonment?

    How do you think you could get through an abandonment or disownment?

    Inspired Lessons from Grief

    Download PDF

    Inspiration from Grief with Nate Berkus on Super Soul Sunday

    This week on Super Soul Sunday, the question came up about what matters to you? #ThingsthatMatter

    Oprah had Nate Berkus as her guest and he was talking about his new book #TheThingsThatMatter and the loss of the love of his live, Fernando.

    Nate and Fernando were in Shralangia when the tsunami hit and in the midst of the storm, Nate lost Feranando in the waters.

    Oprah and Nate were talking about his life after the loss of his boyfriend. Nate was describing how he “turned up the volume” on his life as he truly believes Fernando would have wanted. And also how life can’t be lived the same once you lose someone special in your life.

    I can relate to many of the things regarding grief and loss because 1)I loss my mom when I was 7 and 2) the disownment from my family 3)my husband’s heart attack and medical issues

    When you are going through such difficult or trying times such as the loss of a loved one or the abandonment from your family…the feelings are similar because you go through shock, pain, anger, bargaining, reflection, and healing.

    When you are in the midst of the grief, it may be harder to see the lessons to be learned but they are there if you seek them out.

    Nate stated through the loss of Fernando he learned the things that matter to him were to be more compassionate, go out of his comfort zone, appreciate time with people, live from his authentic self.

    I could relate with Nate because through my disownment I learned the things that matter to me are listen to my inner guidance, spend time with those who have positive energy, and spread the message of self love & true purpose.

    This episode came at an aligned time for me because my upcoming book, ‘DISOWNED: A Journey of Transformation from Abandonment to Healing’ is coming out soon. Stay tuned for details.

    Even in the middle of the most tragic events, there is beauty that can be found if you are able to look for it, recognize it and use it to live your life with the volume turned up.

    What things matter to you? And how are you planning on turning up the volume in your life?

    Self Love – The Message Continues…

    Download PDF

    Here is a continuation of the conversation on self love in a short video to further talk about what self love means in relationship to other people saying they love you.

    In cased you missed it here is the first part of the conversation on self love.

    Do you think you need someone else to love you in order for you to love yourself?

    Inspiration from Music: A Conversation about Writing & Music

    Download PDF

    I came across Kathy Pooler’s link when she brought up her enjoyment in listening to music while she writes.

    Kathy shared in her post titled Music Matters in Memoir Writing, “I have always been amazed at the ability of music to affect my mood, transport me to another time and place and help me connect to my own creative energy.

    She’s a woman after my own heart. Listening to music is one of my favorite tactics to get my writing energy “juices” flowing. There is just something about the words and the rhythm of the notes used that gets more motivated and my brain working.

    Usually it will be a point while listening that my mind will go to thinking about songwriter and the process they worked on to get to the final product of their next song. As a writer, I can relate and it gives me inspiration to keep going with my writing.

    Does music work to help you with your writing? If so, how? If not, what other tactics do you use to inspire you move your writing along?

    Inspired Writing: Vision Boards

    Download PDF

    Once again, I was watching OWN and this time the show was about “The Best of the Oprah show” and this one highlighted spirituality (one of my favorite subjects)!

    Oprah had Louise Hay, Cheryl Richardson, and Martha Beck on the show.

    About half way through, the ladies got on the topic of vision boards.

    I knew about vision boards for years but hadn’t done one until about a year ago after I reconnected with life purpose coach, Tina Games. She offered for me to become a member of her coaching groups and one of the teaching sessions was to create our own vision boards.

    For me, the purpose of a vision board allows me to keep a visual tool of those things I am driven by my soul to become a part of my life.

    How has your vision board changed your life?

    Inspired Thinking – What does Anger have to do with it?

    Download PDF

    I was watching #SuperSoulSunday as Oprah was talking with Jill Bolte Taylor, author of A Stroke of Insight.

    Oprah asked Dr. Taylor a question about anger and I just loved her answer:
    (something like this…)
    “Anger is an emotion that takes 90 seconds from the moment you begin to feel anger to the time it takes to exit your body. We choose to stay angry. When we choose to stay angry, it is us choosing to rerun the loop of the tape of the incident that made us angry. We don’t have to stay angry. We choose it.”

    When I heard this it made me think about the length of time I choose to be angry with my dad for disowning me for dating my boyfriend (now husband). I allowed myself to stay angry with him for doing this mean act to me.

    However, I realized over time, I wasn’t doing anything but hurting myself from being angry. My anger wasn’t changing his mind. My anger was making me feel better. My anger wasn’t allowing me to live my best life. My anger was sucking up energy I could have used to be more attentive to the other people in my life.

    What purpose did it serve in my life at the time? None! Except making me miserable. Jill Taylor’s point exactly!

    When you are angry and stay angry, what purpose is it serving you in your life?

    Inspirational Quote from Iyanla Vanzant about Self Reflection

    Download PDF

    Quote from Iyanla Vanzant

    Examining yourself, what you do and how you feel, can be one of the most challenging and frightening things you will ever face in life. Yet the journey into self-acceptance and self-love must begin with self-examination. Until you take the journey of self-reflection, it is almost impossible to grow or learn in life.

    Boy! When I read this quote it has such a deep meaning for me. I believe that when I started the journey of self reflection, it changed my life in a profound way. It was not easy but once I went through the path of self reflection, it helped me come to a bigger understanding of what I wanted to bring to the world and what I didn’t want to share.

    It allowed me to work through those limiting beliefs from my past and move away from having them stay a part of who I am. I realized I didn’t have to carry those along with me. It was a choice that I created for myself but it wasn’t and didn’t have to be the reality of my life. So I changed it.

    And I continue to change and work through things/ideas/ thoughts when they come up that will hinder or prohibit me from being who I wish to be and show to the world.

    When you read this quote, what do you feel? What thoughts come to the forefront?

    Delicious Inspiration: Homemade Coleslaw Recipe

    Download PDF

    My hubby has become quite the “house chef” and I am thrilled that it gives him such joy. And the bonus is Amanda and I get to eat the yumminess.

    Eddie had a checkup last week since his defibulator surgery in December and the doctor told him he was finally good to go to be able to move his left arm more freely.

    What that meant to my husband was, “Now, I can BBQ!” (actually he put the meat in the smoker.)

    After the appointment he went about the task of cutting up the chicken quarters and then I asked him what he was making with the chicken. He replied,”I think I’ll make some coleslaw”.

    Sounded great to me and it was! Here is recipe for the homemade coleslaw he made:

    Homemade Coleslaw:

    1/2 head of cabbage shredded
    2 carrots shredded
    1/4 cup of raisins (or dried cranberries)
    1 golden delicious apple cut up in chunks
    1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
    3 tbsp of honey
    2 tsp parsley
    pinch of salt
    (I added a tsp of black pepper to mine too!)

    Inspired Writing: Write What you WANT to Write

    Download PDF

    Inspiration about Writing From My Girl

    My daughter, Amanda, came to me last night all excited. Now, this type of thing happens pretty often when living with a teenager–as there is always some type of drama in her life so to me I was not overly interested. However, being her mother, I replied,”Ok, so what’s happening now?”

    “Mom, I have a question to ask you.”
    “Ok, what is it?”
    “How do you know what to write about?”
    Now, Amanda has been writing on and off for oh about four or five years now. And she hadn’t talked about writing for quite a while so I was pleased to hear her bring up the subject again.

    “Write what you know about. That’s what I do. At least it’s a good way to get started. ” I rambled.

    “But the stuff that people write about teenagers is the same ole same ole. It’s good stuff and I enjoy reading it. But as a writer, I don’t want to write that.”
    “Amanda, while they may be true, teenagers do like those books. They buy them don’t they? Remember to think about your reader.”
    “Mom, that may be true, but I want to write something different. I want to write something that means something more than just a love sick teenager or a teenage love triangle.”

    “Ok. Well, I wrote about my life and turned it into a book. I don’t know if other people will like the story but it did really happen. It is a love story too.”

    My daughter shifted her hips from one side to another and crossed her arms in front of her.

    “Yes, but the important part of what you said was two things—one, it was a story you wanted to write and two, it is a story your readers, moms and working women will want to read. What I’m saying is I don’t want to share the same ole teenage love story.

    I sat up in my bed and turned down the volume on the TV. She got my attention and I wanted to help, if I could. She was onto something and this was an important point about being a writer.

    “Then find the part of a type of story you like and bring those into the book and leave out the parts you don’t like. That’s the beauty of being a writer–it’s all in YOUR creation of the story.”

    “Ok. I see what you’re saying. Ok. I’ll think about how I can do that in my story.”

    She left my room and I wondered if she really had understood what I meant or was going to get onto something else and let go of the writing for awhile again.

    A few minutes went by and she appeared again in my room, a big smile and a light in her eyes.

    “Mom, I got it! I’m going to write the book I want to write and I think it will be great. I’m going to start out by writing a blog about subjects I want to write about and use that as inspiration for the book.”

    I observed her while she talked and felt the drive and ambition in her to write what she was wanting to write.

    I was inspired by her to write (as this was one of the inspired writings!)

    Thanks Amanda!

    What was the last thing that inspired you to write?

    Inspiration for Writers from IACCW

    Download PDF

    I recently signed up for a free membership to the ICCWA – International Association of Conscious and Creative Writers founded by Julia McCutchen.

    ~In honor of her first granddaughter, Lyra born on December 31st, she is offering a 31% discount on her products at IACCW until January 31st.

    ~She had this article about 7 Tips for Creating Your New Year Writing Success Strategy.

    The New Year is a fabulous time to inject a fresh burst of energy into your plans for writing and publishing your book.

    So here are 7 tips to help you have your best writing year yet:

    1. Identify what is genuinely important to you about your writing. So many people today live in the fast lane. As a result, it is easy to lose sight of what really matters.

    With your writing, being consciously connected to what is truly important enables you to give yourself permission to prioritise your writing time. This means that you will get your writing done and feel more creatively satisfied as a result.

    So start this year by taking time to re-connect to the source of your inspiration to write. Then write about that in your journal to refer back to in the coming months.

    2. Clarify your vision. With that connection in place to keep you grounded, the next step is to sharpen your focus on where you are heading. Being clear about your vision will inspire and motivate you to maintain your progress.

    One of the most powerful ways of bringing your vision to life is to create a Vision Board. This involves making a collage of images to represent yourself as an author and what you want to achieve with your writing.

    If you have already made one, the turn of the year is a wonderful opportunity to add new images which feel appropriate for this year, or make a fresh one to reflect your new ideas for 2013.

    3. Clear your inner and outer space. When it comes to the creative cycle, space is often overlooked. Yet it is a crucial ingredient of the creative process. In fact, space is the true source of your most inspired ideas.

    Starting with your inner space, I recommend that you empty your mind and enjoy a break from thinking regularly. Strange though this may sound, it is an exceptionally good way to recharge your creative fire.

    De-cluttering your outer space, especially where you write, also has an immensely beneficial effect on the free flow of your writing. So if you haven’t had a clear-out in a while, this is your chance to do so.

    4. Get organised. One of the challenges that many writers face is keeping track of all their ideas efficiently. Most creative people find that ideas for a project can arrive at any time of day (and night!).

    Many experienced writers have pads of paper and pens scattered all around the house, and never leave home without a notebook. Yet ending up with piles of disorganised notes can be frustrating and time consuming when you can’t find what you’re looking for.

    If this resonates with you, turn over a new leaf this year and purchase some new files (colourful ones always make this task more fun), and dedicate a few hours to putting your notes in order.

    5. Make a plan. For some writers, planning comes easily and naturally. For others it is such an unwelcome task that it never gets done at all!

    Yet having the right kind of plan to work to can actually free up your creativity rather than curb it. Certainly, proper planning is part of making the shift into the more serious gear that writing a book for publication requires.

    Depending on where you are on in the writing process, this may mean making a plan for completing your article or manuscript, or drafting your synopsis in preparation for approaching agents or publishers. Whatever applies to your individual situation, a plan will guide you step-by-step towards your vision.

    6. Pay attention to your choices and decisions on a daily basis. Writing a book involves an important balance between the big picture (the vision) and the detail (the words on the page).

    Each and every day, how you choose to spend your time and deciding what your priorities are become the defining moments on your journey.

    The future arises out of who we are in the present moment and the smallest daily decisions lead to the largest long term results. So bring your awareness to your choices today and see the positive effects tomorrow.

    7. Take action! Of course all of the visioning and planning in the world will only take you so far. When all is said and done, vision and action go hand in hand.

    So avoid being seduced by having a beautifully tidy writing space with your Vision Board on your wall, your notes beautifully filed and your plan carefully scheduled … but no writing actually happening!

    Remember what this is all for – to move you forwards joyfully and creatively towards successful published authorship – whatever route you take to get there.

    The results of your efforts need to show up on the page and this is where you’ll know whether or not you are on track for success with writing your book for publication in 2013.

    Good luck and enjoy the journey of diving ever more deeply into your conscious and creative expression as a writer!

    Q4U: What strategies resonate most with you? What others do you use to keep you on track with your writing? Share your experience below.

    © Julia McCutchen 2013. All Rights Reserved.
    Julia McCutchen is an author, conscious writing coach, intuitive mentor, and the founder & creative director of the International Association of Conscious & Creative Writers (IACCW). A former publisher of books on spiritual and personal development, Julia teaches conscious creativity, conscious writing and a holistic approach to writing for publication that combines the inner journey of creative self-discovery with the practical steps required for writing and publishing books. She is the author of The Writer’s Journey: From Inspiration to Publication. For more information and a FREE Special Report on Discovering Your Authentic Voice – on the page and in the world, visit www.iaccw.com.


    #3 Clear your inner and outer spaceStarting with your inner space, I recommend that you empty your mind and enjoy a break from thinking regularly. Strange though this may sound, it is an exceptionally good way to recharge your creative fire.
    TM: –>LOVE THIS! For me, I try listening to music or taking a walk. BOY! When I read this it hit home for me because I identified with this quickly. My outer space to me isn’t the issue but sometimes my inner space (my mind, especially my EGO) can have me thinking I’m not going to succeed at my writing or questioning my writing.

    #5 Make a planDepending on where you are on in the writing process, this may mean making a plan for completing your article or manuscript, or drafting your synopsis in preparation for approaching agents or publishers. Whatever applies to your individual situation, a plan will guide you step-by-step towards your vision.
    TM: –>I have to say I’m a BIG planner. I’m one of those people who make a grocery list every time I go to the store. When I work, I write down a to-do list so I can plan what I will be accomplishing in my day. When I write, I plan the amount of words, pages or chapters I wish to accomplish at a given time frame. It keeps me accountable and on track.

    #7 Take ActionSo avoid being seduced by having a beautifully tidy writing space with your Vision Board on your wall, your notes beautifully filed and your plan carefully scheduled … but no writing actually happening!
    Remember what this is all for – to move you forwards joyfully and creatively towards successful published authorship – whatever route you take to get there.

    –>TM: Yes, it is great to outline and create a vision board but it is vitally important to write. Take the action of the writing. Putting the pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard. Take the next inspired step and WRITE! Without the doing, there isn’t a book.

    Inspiration in the New Year from the Jeff Probst Show

    Download PDF


    Last week, I was watching the Jeff Probst show with my husband. If you haven’t been able to watch the show, I encourage you to check it out. The premise of most of his shows are to share inspirational stories of extraordinary people in the daily journey of life.

    This morning Jeff had a lady on the show who endured some trying times. A few years ago, this lady had given birth to her second child three months earlier. She said she was “going about her life as a mother of two and wife to her husband and life was good”. One day she states she had began to show symptoms of the flu—aches and fever. A few days later she went to the doctor who told her husband to take her into the hospital immediately.

    Her husband was beside himself because he was stunned to find out she had developed a flesh eating disease. Shortly after, he was told she needed to have her hands and lower legs amputated in order to save her life.

    As I watching the show and heard this story, tears began to build up in my eyes. When I heard the word amputate, the tears flowed down my face and I was transported back in my mind a year and a half ago when the doctors told me my husband would have to lose his right leg in order to possibly save his life.

    After 5 weeks in a medically induced coma, this woman woke up to be faced with the fact that she has lost her hands and lower part of both legs. Jeff asked her something like, “What was that like to be faced with this?” She said something like, “My focus was on my kids. What do I need to do in order to get back to my kids.” The story continued to share how she miraculously overcame the obstacles and has come to relish her life in a new way. She can do most things others can do. I loved it and was inspired when she said, “I get to share with my kids creative and inventive ways to do things that they may have not been able to see if this hadn’t happened to me.”

    For my husband, myself and our daughter, our lives have been forever changed as well. Luckily for us, my husband didn’t need to get his leg amputated. The doctors opted to do a “special” bypass surgery on him that allowed them to increase the circulation in his legs. (My husband had developed Peripheral Arterial Disease in his legs due to smoking, which leads to clogs arteries just like in the heart).

    Watching this story of this woman and her family triumphing through this journey of ups and downs sent memories through my mind of the journey my family and I went through with my husbands’ medical issues. It was amazing to me how the emotional turmoil still is fresh to me. I cried many times this morning as I recalled things that occurred with my husband over a year and a half ago. I cried. My hubby cried. We talked over many things. I cried more. He cried more. We hugged. It was good for us to go through it and talk about it as a wonderful reminder how lucky and grateful we are to have each other.

    There are many people who have been through many hard and difficult things in their lives sometimes (or many times) “worse” than you have been through.

    I am thankful and grateful everyday that I am able to have my husband in my life after the medical journey we have been through over the past year and a half because it constantly reminds me to:

    HAPPY NEW YEAR! More importantly, HAPPY DAY!!

    Guest Author Inspiration from Susan Turner

    Download PDF

    Guest Author Interview with Susan Turner

    Author Biography and Background: Although I was born in New York and proudly claim a NY heritage, my family and I moved to Miami in the mid-1950’s where I attended elementary, junior and senior high schools. After four years of college (at Miami Dade Community College and the University of Florida), I began a long and satisfying career in public education in Tampa, Florida. Along the way, I earned both MA and PhD degrees at the University of South Florida. Several years ago, in response to the yearning for a more creative—and less formally structured—life, I began writing and illustrating children’s books. Thus far, I have written and illustrated one picture book called Benjamin Barley’s Button; retold and illustrated an Asian folk tale called The King’s Flowers; written a literary fiction book entitled Small Black Boxes; and written a three-volume adventure series entitled the Rufus Steele Adventure Series. This month, I’ve just completed the manuscript for an adult mystery novel entitled Harry and Eve. Most of my writing is done in Tampa in the company of my tuxedo cat, Jake, and my terrific husband, John, who writes historical non-fiction.

    What inspired you to begin writing? As an educator, I was always most interested in language and literature. Books open many doors for children and adults. A good story is many times, the best part of the day. As a fifth grader, I vividly remember my teacher reading Old Yeller to us each day after lunch. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room at the final chapter. That book brought us all together, bared our feelings, showed us all we were caring human beings. I wanted to write a book like that.

    Please share your latest book. Rufus Steele 1943, the third book in the Rufus Steele Adventure Series, takes place in Italy in 1943. It is the continuing story of a country doctor and his young friend (Henry Murphy) who are now serving in the army in the Italian campaign of World War II—Rufus as a surgeon in an evacuation hospital and Henry with the 904th Engineers. Over the past five years (and two previous books in the series) Rufus and Henry have developed a close friendship. When Henry goes missing in enemy territory, Rufus risks his life to come to Henry’s rescue.

    How did you decide to publish this book? Why? This book is co-authored by my father, a World War II veteran (now 88 years old) who served with the 904th Engineers A. F. Headquarters Company in North Africa, Sicily, and Italy. In 2002, he wrote an account of his war-time experiences, many of which serve as the source for scenes in this story. In part, the book is a tribute to him and his service and those of his fellow servicemen. It was important to me that, while a work of fiction, the book reflect the many experiences young men and women have in combat and war and how their feelings change as they move through those experiences. The already established relationship between Rufus and Henry was the perfect vehicle for telling an interesting and compelling story from both points of view.

    What is the best advice you have received about writing? I’ve had the good fortune to be a participant in several outstanding writing programs including the Southampton (NY) Writing Conference and Eckerd College’s (FL) Writers in Paradise Conference. The instructors and speakers I’ve encountered in these programs are all highly skilled writers. I could not select just one piece of advice from them. Their willingness to share their abilities and skills with developing writers is a rare thing. I encourage anyone who wants to grow as a writer to enroll in these workshops. These writers always urge writers to write, to read, to continue educating themselves, that your writing improves when you write and receive feedback from others.

    What was your biggest challenge in writing this book? Research. I spent a great deal of time reading about the progress of the Italian Campaign, getting events in the right sequence, geographical locations in place. In addition, I learned a lot about weapons, mines, half-ton trucks, pontoon bridges, field hospitals. Synthesizing the information and deciding where and when to include it in the story was always a challenge.

    What has been your greatest reward in writing this book? As I mentioned, my father and I co-authored the book, and we have given presentations together about the book. Thus, I learned many things—many wonderful things—about my father I did not know. He was a very young man (18 to 21 years old) when he enlisted and served in the war. His memories of that time are precious and meaningful to him, and I was moved and honored to share some of them.

    Most writers are readers. What 3 books are on your “to-read” list? I try to read a variety of genre. In particular, I try to read books that have received critical acclaim such as the Booker Prize or the Printz Award or the NY Times Best Book of the Year. With that criterion in mind, three must-reads are Room by Emma Donoghue (NY Times Best Book of 2010), Skellig by David Almond (a Printz Honor Book in 1998) and Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel (Booker Prize 2011). Throughout the years, I’ve tried to read everything by Michael Ondaatje and Kazuo Ishiguro and Ian McEwan. And I love Alan Furst’s period spy mysteries.

    Where can readers find out more about you and your book? Oh, I’m just awful at keeping up with these social media processes. I have both a facebook and twitter account. Facebook address is www.facebook.com/susanteetsturner. My author website address is www.authorsusancturner.com. The Harry Douglas Press (my publisher) website address is www.harrydouglaspress.com. Print books and e-books can be ordered through www.amazon.com with e-books through www.smashwords.com or Barnes & Noble nook books.
    Fun question: What was your favorite childhood toy and why? When I read this question, the first things that came to mind were my skates. Each day when I got home from school, I would get out the good sturdy shoes, my skate key, and my skates and skate round and round my block until dinner time.

    Thanks for the opportunity, Teresa, to contribute to your blog. I’m grateful for your interest. Best of everything to you and your family. It was lovely having you here Susan. Thanks for sharing about your writing journey and your book.

    Positive Affirmation Reminders – Use the “I Am”

    Download PDF

    This morning I opened my email to see my daily “jolt” of inspiration from Iyanla Vanzant and Inner Visions Institute.

    Here was one of her recommendations I would like to share with you:

    Take a 8 1/2” by 11″ paper and on each of the 40 lines, write a “I AM” statement. Use this as a reminder to be surrounded by positive, affirming statements to live by each day.

    TERESA TIP: Once done, tape this to your fridge and or bathroom mirror. Or you can transfer each of the statements onto index cards. Place the stack of cards in your night stand. Each day, take them out and read one before getting out of bed, as a great inspirational jolt to start the day.

    I encourage you to sign up for Iyanla Vanzant newsletter. Go to Inner Visions and sign up today.

    Writing Question of the Week: Is a Website Enough?

    Download PDF

    Writing Question of the Week

    Are authors doing enough to market their books by simply setting up a website for the book?

    No, there needs to be more to the marketing machine these days. Just having a website is not enough to market your book. Creating a message driven website is a great start to marketing you and your book but it is just the beginning. You will want to incorporate other marketing tools such as a monthly newsletter, blogging, article writing, speaking engagements, social media marketing & collaborative partnerships. By combining these elements, you create a more comprehensive marketing plan for you and your book.

    Back to Basics Marketing Tip: More Than Just a Website

    Download PDF

    Previously I shared with you about taking the time to put up a website that reflects you as the author & writer and your book. Don’t just put up a website to say you have one but when someone goes to your website it doesn’t share with the visitor your purpose.

    Now, I wish to share with you that it takes more than just a website to convey your soul purpose message of your spiritual work. You will want to begin to develop long lasting relationships with like minded people who wish to know more about you and your work.

    How do you do this? Networking. Networking is about showing up, having conversations and connecting with other people who will be interested in you and your book.

    Don’t allow the thought of networking make your heart start to race and your palms get sweaty. Networking is one of the most effective organic ways for you to share your message with your potential readers, collaborators, friends, and/or clients.

    As the late Zig Ziglar said, “People buy from people they know, like and trust.”

    If people don’t know about you, get to know you, like you and trust you, they will not purchase from you or show up to what you are doing.

    And this doesn’t mean you have to sign up for every online group or local organization you see or hear about. Also, I’m not talking about pushing your product and services at anyone and everyone all the time. There is a way to network that is natural and organic (more on this topic coming).

    Again, how do you start to network? Start with one group, club or organization. Start with one that resonates with you. Either online or offline, it doesn’t matter. Just begin with one. Sign up and commit to showing up to the next meeting or chat. Without showing up, you can’t make connections. You aren’t allowing yourself to be present to help or support to others in your community. Take the time to show up.

    Here are a few that may help you get started (these are some of the ones I belong to):
    Book Blogs
    IACCW – International Association of Conscious and Creative Writers
    NSA – National Speaker’s Assocation

    The Power of Conversation: Finding support, friends and inspiration in conversations

    Download PDF

    I talked awhile ago about the power of conversation in a short video on YouTube but I wanted to reiterate my point(s) here. Many people overlook the power of simply having a conversation with someone. And the beauty of a conversation isn’t about what you can gain but what you can learn or even help someone else with in their work, writing or life.

    Recently, I had reconnected with a colleague friend of mine, Edie Galley, whom I hadn’t talked with in over a year. As you may or may not have heard or read the summer of 2011 and since has been a trial of doctor’s appointments, medication refills, hospital visits then repeat. And repeat. And repeat. And this wasn’t myself, it was my husband for the better half of 2012 and then my parents followed in line with my dad being hospitalized over the holidays and then my mom in for heart surgery on Valentine’s Day this year. And she shared with me about things going on with some of her family members and how it affected her life.

    Anyway, I digress…getting back to the conversation with my friend. I was just making the point that when lives get crazed it can take you away from making those connections or re-connections, as in this case, with people you know.

    When we finally did connect again it was so lovely just to be able to sit and listen and hear about what she has been going through and be there for her as she was there for me. What a great support to have someone to talk with about similar situations. It’s a real comfort to know that the other person on the phone understands what you are going through—like a 1-on-1 support group.

    Many times I think we feel we can just do everything ourselves and we don’t need others to help. That’s so much bologna and we know it!

    As Edie and I continued talking, we got on the subject of what we were doing for work—what writing we were doing, our websites, upcoming events or programs, etc. In the midst of our conversation, it came to us that we should do an inspirational workshop together in 2013. She is going to focus on healthy living and I’m going to share about self love and self care. We are excited to share our experiences and knowledge to help others and that is what the main focus of the workshop is about—helping others. We haven’t worked out the details but they will be coming, so stay tuned.

    So for this week my tip is this—pick up the phone or even send an email to someone you haven’t talk to in awhile. Reach out and be a support, help and inspiration for someone you know. You never know what can happen. You may find you receive more than you expected in the process just by being there for someone.

    Hey! You might just end up putting together a workshop, event or collaborative project together like Edie and I.

    WHOOHOO! The Power of a Conversation!

    Life Lessons from the Heart – Don’t Let Someone Else or Something Else Stop You from Being You

    Download PDF

    Life Lessons: Tell your EGO, “You aren’t going to stop me from living my dreams”

    I just wanted to share with you this short video about not letting your EGO keep you from what you want to do in your life. And even it is YOU (your inner critic) to keep you from doing what you want to do. The greatest point of it, is you get to choose to listen or move past the doubt and toward your dreams.

    Interview with Karen Bentley – author of Power to Stop

    Download PDF

    I have the pleasure and honor of getting to know authors, writers and poets. I get to share a bit about these lovely people I meet with you, my blog readers.

    Interview with Author Karen Bentley, author of Power to Stop

    Please share about your background
    I’m an Army brat and lived in Italy from the age of three to six.
    Unfortunately, I don’t remember much of it, so I don’t think it counts. Mostly I consider Poughkeepsie, NY as my hometown because that’s where we settled after my Dad retired. I’m the only one still living from my birth family. My only brother Carl, who had Down syndrome, died unexpectedly two years ago, and I still miss his sweet smile. For the past 12 years I’ve been living in New Hampshire with my husband, Bill, and my three big basset hounds: Dreamer, Rosie-Posey and Starbelle. Because I have to drive an hour and a half to get to a Macy’s, I affectionately refer to where I live as the fringes of colonization.

    What inspired you to begin writing?
    I have an awareness about what it means to be and to extend non-romantic love, which is still quite unusual on planet Earth. I feel compelled to share this awareness, and that’s the primary reason for going through the torment and drudge of getting my work published.

    When did you begin your writing journey?
    I’ve always been a voracious reader, so writing was an easy and natural progression for me. I began writing professionally in 1998.

    What inspired you to write this book?
    I was very unhappy and stressed out during the recent economic downturn, and I wrote The Power to Stop as a way to get myself feeling better. I thought I could lift myself up by being of use to the world. This is a book that’s been inside me for at least 15 years, trying and trying to get out, but I kept putting it off. It started to feel like it was a now or never situation, like I had to write it. As it turns out, because of the 30-day format, The Power to Stop was the hardest book I’ve ever written. By that I mean, I had to really dig deep and challenge myself to keep the program
    fresh and interesting for 30 consecutive days.

    What is the best advice you have received about writing?
    Every writer or wannabe writer should read On Writing by Stephen King.

    What is your advice to beginning writers?
    Keep refining your work, and get it professionally edited.

    What has been your greatest reward in writing this book?
    I’m proud of the book. It’s well written. It’s helpful. It looks good, and it’s getting lots of endorsements and fab reviews.

    Most writers are readers. What books are on your “to-read” list?
    For spiritual nourishment, I turn to A Course In Miracles or to the series of non-fiction books written by Carlos Castaneda. For physical nourishment, I re-read Chris Crowley’s Younger Next Year. For a quick girly book escape, I read A Duke of Her Own by Eloisa James. These books always satisfy me and all are sure things.

    Where can readers find out more about you and your book? (add in blog/website/social media links)
    Go to http://www.powertostop.com and on Amazon

    Question for fun sake – a fun fact about you

    Most people don’t know that I aspire to hold the Guinness record for the world’s largest collection of heart objects. I probably have over 2,000 hearts, but I’ve been too lazy to get them organized and counted. I would love to display them in a heart museum and open a sacred healing faerie garden for sick and sad children. Maybe someday you’ll come and visit me and the faeries who live in my garden.

    Authors & Writers Weekly Round Up – About Writing & Book Covers

    Download PDF

    Authors & Writers Weekly Round Up

    Here are some tools and resources I found on the internet —websites, articles, blogs, newsletter, videos. I would like to share these with you to help support, connect, and guide you in your writing life.

    Independent Author Network tweeted by @dagonsblood and @Rtbenswoodward

    Marcie Brock – 8 Mistakes to Avoid when Designing your book Cover

    Best Ever You Show with Linda Ellish -author of The Dash

    Here Women Talk – Great place with articles and blog posts all about subjects important to women

    Authors: Be Consistent with your Online Marketing

    Download PDF

    Authors: I know online marketing can seem daunting at times. Take it one step at a time. Create a plan for yourself that works for you. And within those marketing tools, such as your website, blog and newsletter/ezine, make a rule of consistency.
    In this short video, I give you a brief description of what I’m talking about when talking about consistency.

    Author Interview with Christine Rice – author of Freelance Writing Guide

    Download PDF

    I have the pleasure and honor of getting to know authors, writers and poets. I get to share a bit about these lovely people I meet with you, my blog readers.

    Interview with Author Christine Rice – author of Freelance Writing Guide

    1) Please share a bit of your background (where you were born, where you were raised, sibling information, what your career was before you became a writer, where you live now, etc)
    I was born and raised in various states and towns in New England. My parents divorced when I was six years old. I have two younger half-brothers. I now live in the city of Worcester, Massachusetts with my husband and our cat. I worked in retail, fashion, banking, and finance before becoming a writer.

    2) When did you begin your writing journey?
    I wrote poetry and journal entries throughout childhood and adolescence. But getting my own computer in 2005 is when I consider my writing journey began. In 2006, I began writing poetry again (it had been numerous years since I dabbled in it). I also wrote essays about the craft of writing and what writing meant to me. I published my first book in 2007, Poetry for the Heart, which included all the poems I wrote in 2006 and 2007. I then published Essays for the Soul in 2008, which is a compilation of essays I wrote from 2006-2008 (the second edition, published in 2012, includes essays up through 2009). In 2009, I published My Not-So-Ordinary Life, which is an autobiography about my childhood, adolescence, and adult years – up to age 28. I became a freelance writer and editor in 2011. In August 2012, I published Freelance Writing Guide, which is a reference book for freelance writers.

    3) What is the best writing advice you have ever received?
    When I first started my freelance writing career, I was spending more time editing articles than I was writing them, because I wanted them to come out perfectly. Someone told me not to be obsessed with editing, that I should only spend half an hour editing each article, and should spend more time writing new articles. The advice really put things in perspective for me. I realized that, just like no person is perfect, writing can’t be perfect. So I gave myself some slack and was more productive from that point forward.

    4) What is your advice to beginning writers?
    Read all that you can about writing and write a lot. To be a good writer you need to learn how to write well, and then practice what you have learned. You also need to learn how to be creative and only the act of writing can bring that to the surface. You must edit too, and that also takes practice.

    5) Please share about your latest book, The Freelance Writing Guide.
    My latest book is Freelance Writing Guide: What to Expect in Your First Year as a Freelance Writer. It is a book meant to educate writers on what freelance writers do and what the career is like. The purpose is to take away the fear of the unknown that writers have before they begin a new career. It talks about all the different writing tasks a freelance writer does in the first year of their career, and gives additional information about business finances, home office supplies, the lifestyle of a freelance writer, and a little about my background and experiences as a writer. It is available at Amazon, Lulu, and Smashwords.

    6) How did you decide to publish this book? Why?
    I was inspired to write it when I had been a full-time freelance writer for nine months, because I had gained a lot of knowledge and experience during that time. Also, I had lots of questions and a bit of trepidation about becoming a freelance writer before I started, so I knew a book about it would ease some people’s minds and answer their questions. Basically, I wanted to educate writers about freelance writing and share my experiences.

    7) Most writers are readers. What books do you have on your nightstand or on your “must read” list?
    I’m about to start reading Anywhere but Here by Sherri Fulmer Moorer. Then I’ll be reading Blood Faerie by India Drummond, ’59 and Valiant by Anthony Sunderland, The Smolder by Kathryn Judson, Lipsi’s Daughter by Patty Apolsolides, The Sound and the Echoes by Dew Pellucid, and others. They are all books I’ve agreed to read and review, and they look really good.

    8) What are your writing plans for the rest of the year into 2013?
    At the end of 2012, I will be publishing Chronicles of a Troubled Girl, which is a compilation of all of my personal journal entries from age 9 until age 30, and Articles for the Mind, which is a compilation of all the articles I published as a freelance writer in 2011. In mid 2013, I plan to publish Freedom from Fat, which will be a compilation of online journal entries and blog posts about my weight loss journey from 2010-2013. I would also like to put out a third edition of my poetry book to include poems I wrote during my teen years, likely in 2013.

    9) Where can others find out more you and your book?My blog is called, Christine Rice, Author: All About Writing and Books.
    On Amazon:

    10)Question for fun sake—what was your favorite cartoon or kid’s show when you were little and why?
    Scooby Doo, because as a child I was inquisitive and liked figuring things out. I liked how the characters solved mysteries, which made the show a bit of a challenge when watching. I also liked reading mysteries, like the Nancy Drew series. I read many of those books.

    Thanks Christine!

    Author Bio:

    Christine Rice is a professional writer, an editor, and an author. She has been publishing her writing since 2007. She is the author of four books – Poetry for the Heart, Essays for the Soul, My Not-So-Ordinary Life, and Freelance Writing Guide – and is planning on publishing two more books by the end of 2012. She has been a freelance writer and an editor since 2011. She enjoys writing, reading, computers, the Internet, family, exercising, animals, shopping, and dining out. She resides in Worcester, MA USA with her husband and cat.

    Virtual Book Tour for Life Lessons from the Heart

    Download PDF

    Virtual Book Tour for Life Lessons from the Heart

    I am looking for bloggers and internet radio show hosts to help with my upcoming non fiction inspirational book, Life Lessons from the Heart, by participating in a virtual book tour. If this is interest to you, please email back at teresa@teresamorrow.com.

    My first book, Life Lessons from the Heart, is a non fiction book to share things I learned from different experiences in my life. I am planning on publishing this as an ebook via Smashwords in late July/early August.

    The blog tour is scheduled to be running from August 1st-August 31st.

    I am looking for at least 15-20 (or more) bloggers/reviewers/internet radio show hosts to offer either book reviews, guest blog posts, book mentions or author interviews on their blogs, websites and/or newsletters.

    Book Description:

    Life is a precious gift you have been given and there are lessons in all experiences that life gives to you.

    In, Life Lessons from the Heart, the author shares her experiences of hard times and how she was able to work through them. She tells how she became appreciative of even the toughest of times such as the death of her mom, a divorce with the father of her child, getting disowned by her father and her husband’s heart attack.

    The author reveals how she finds life’s beauty even when life throws in scary, sad or unfortunate events. She shares how she discovered that life is rich in community and saturated in love. She offers ways where you can go on to live a richer, happier and more fulfilled life that breeds from your true authentic self.

    This book shares stories and insight on how to:

    ~realize the importance of celebrating who you are (just as you are now)

    ~release the grip of having to be right and in control

    ~end the feeling of self doubt

    ~embrace and find time to do the things you love to do

    ~and much more…

    If you are someone who feels stuck in your life and wish to turn it around reading “Life Lessons from the Heart” will give you inspiration and motivation to live a life coming from a place of self love and self care.

    You can read more about my book at my website Teresa Morrow.

    My offer to you:

    1. Your blog URL will appear in the event tour’s official schedule, which will be posted on http://teresamorrow.com (my website).

    2. Of course, you will get a complimentary ebook copy of the book Life Lessons from the Heart in your email.
    3. EXTRA promotion for you and your blog/website as I will be posting about my virtual book tour stops to my 2300+ friends and followers on Twitter and Facebook.

    Your options:

    1. Write a review of the pdf book, ‘Life Lessons from the Heart”.

    2. Request a guest blog post from me regarding self development, forgiveness and/or self love.

    3. Post an interview with the me on your blog.(I can either send you questions or you can provide the questions)

    Get started:

    Please respond by July 10th so that I can add you to the blog tour schedule.

    Please email me at teresa@tereasmorrow.com to let me know if you are interested in participating in it for the blog tour.

    I appreciate your continued support with my writing efforts!

    Life Lessons from the Heart: Release of Control

    Download PDF

    I am one of the biggest culprits of this, I have to know what is going to happen next. I don’t like to not know what is going on. So I feel like I have to figure it out when there is a problem or issue, even if I can’t do anything about it.

    Here is a short video post to share about how I have learned to better handle issues when they come up and I want to control them.

    Book Marketing Tip: Knowing the Goal of your Book

    Download PDF

    You have a message you want to share with others. You have knowledge on a subject you want to give to others. You decide to write a book on the subject containing your message and knowledge. Before you write the book, ask yourself, what goal do I want to accomplish with the book? By securing the answer to the question, you can formulate a more effective campaign for your book.

    As an author, you will need to start finding and researching places on the internet and locally to showcase your book. Knowing the goal for your book will allow you to use your research time wisely.

    For instance, the goal of you book can be that your book is used as a complimentary tool for your speaking career. You will be able to have a table set up in the back room at your speaking engagements. The attendees have the opportunity to purchase your book at the table. Another option, you can give the book as a gift to each attendee as part of the admission to your speech.

    Taking the time to know the goal of your book will allow you to create a marketing plan where you streamline your effort, money and time.

    What is the future of blogging for authors?

    Download PDF

    The word blog

    Do you have to deal with blogger drama?

    I recently signed up for a few author blogs, Claire Reads being one of them.

    Her latest blog post, titled, The future of book blogging raised a question about blogging and it made me want to offer some support to her and other blogging authors.

    Claire begins the post by sharing she is a newbie blogger and then goes on to ask if there is a basic protocol for blogging. She coins the phrase…blogger drama.

    She states,”In the 4 months I have been blogging, while I have made plenty of friends, I have also seen plenty of drama. It’s seems that if you make one wrong move, someone will pick up on it and you will be “shunned” by that blogger and all their blogger friends.”

    This startles me because I didn’t know this existed, although I guess I should not be surprised that someone could “shun” you and it has somewhat of a domino effect outward to their blogger friends. If you write an opinion piece, you may find there will be those whom don’t agree with you and they may become vocal about it.

    However, I like (and agree) with one of the people whom commented on the post,when they shared, “Be yourself and have fun”.

    Yes, blogging is about being yourself and having fun. It is a reflection of you…so if you feel you want to place something online (realizing it will be out there for the world to see and able to be found forever), then you can do it.

    Another good piece of advice I saw from another comment was, “…it you made a mistake, admit it and learn from it.” I like that as well, because we are all human and at times, we do make mistakes. Most people will give you another chance if you admit a mistake. And if a few people don’t wish to forgive you, then allow it to just be and move on.

    Claire goes on to ask for help in the world of blogging and here are a few tips I would like to share—

    1) Blogging is about sharing your knowledge, thoughts, ideas with others. Putting yourself and what you know, your experiences, your ups and downs, with others to help them while allowing yourself to grow.

    2) Blogging is about community and building relationships with others. People thrive on getting information. When they find someone who they can know, like and trust with valuable, honest information, they will come back over and over again. Bring value and truth when you blog.

    3) Blogging is a reflection of you and as long as you are coming from your true self and your authentic self, write on, or shall I say, blog on! Noone else can be you, so you don’t have to be someone else. If you can stand in your truth and power when you write a blog post, then put it out there. You have to be okay with what you put out there.

    4) Blogging isn’t about having to please everyone. The infamous saying comes to mind, “if you try to please everyone, you’ll end up pleasing noone”. Not everyone is probably going to agree with you and you have to be okay with that. Remember that you don’t agree with everyone either. But don’t let it stop you from being who you are and certainly don’t let it stop you from blogging if this is something you enjoy.

    I hope this helps Claire and other newbie bloggers out there.

    Happy Writing (and Blogging)!

    Life Lessons from the Heart: One thing I didn’t feel guilty about and it saved me

    Download PDF

    I wanted to share an important lesson that I learned during one of the most difficult times in my life…last year when my husband had a heart attack and had a surgery from peripheral artery disease and we were in the process of moving into a house. Not to mention being a parent of a teenage daughter, a daughter of ill parents and running my own business…talk about a lot to deal with emotionally, physically and spiritually.

    Here is a short video about what I did and didn’t feel guilty about it either…

    Life Lessons from the Heart: Letting Go of Anger

    Download PDF

    Anger—Let Go and Move Forward

    Has there even been a time in your life when you were angry but didn’t even know it but you have been carrying it around for months or years?

    This happened to me. I was mad at my mom who died when I was 6 and didn’t realize I has held onto this anger until I was 40. Crazy huh?

    Here is my story about how I realized my anger but learned to move through it.

    Life Lessons from the Heart: Changing Someone’s Mind

    Download PDF

    I can be stubborn. And maybe you can be stubborn too. When we think one way, we feel that others should feel and see things the same way we do. If someone disagrees with us and a possible decision we have made or about to make, we tend to get defensive immediately.

    We want that person to feel and think like us. Right? But is that good? Then we go into this tail spin of emotions, questioning ourselves and the other person of why won’t they do and think like us. What is wrong with them? Or maybe I am the wrong one?

    Has this scenario happened to you? If so, I am right there with you.

    It can be very draining and pretty much drive you crazy when you feel so strongly about something and someone else feels the opposite. You spend an endless amount of time trying to plead your case—you are right and the other person is wrong.

    I had this happen to me about 10 years ago when my dad disagreed with me (actually disowned me) for dating a black man 20+ years older than me.

    Needless to say, I was wanting to change my dad’s mind about my then boyfriend whom I had been friends with for about 2 years. But my dad wouldn’t hear nothing of it. I spent many hours, days, weeks trying to figure out why my dad was so against my being with this wonderful, caring, sincere man.

    I wanted to be able to show my dad the goodness in my boyfriend but no matter how much I tried and wanted it, I couldn’t change my dad’s mind. There were two valuable lessons I learned.
    (1) I had to learn and realize it wasn’t my place to change my dads’s mind. My dad had to do it in his own time. No matter how much I wanted him to do it in my time, it was not going to happen. My dad had to go through his own journey with this decision and find his way.
    (2) It was NOT about me being right and him being wrong. Even though I thought that was the fight for a long time. It was more about my not spending the time, energy and focusing my life trying to make my dad come to my way of thinking.

    Once I stopped fighting in my mind and spending so much time thinking about the complexities of this situation with my dad, I let it go. I realized I had to let it go and live my life. I was happy and all I was doing by continuing to be upset with my dad’s decision, I was taking time and energy away from the loves in my life.

    My dad and I are now closer than ever. You can read more about this lesson and others in my upcoming book, Life Lessons from the Heart, to be published by Smashwords.

    If you would like to get updates regarding my posts and my upcoming book(s), be sure to sign up for my blog (see the form to the right).

    Let’s start a conversation about this—share your experiences and how you got through it.