You are not here by chance,
but by God’s choosing.
His hand formed you and made you
the person that you are.
He compares you to no one else –
You are one of a kind.
You lack nothing that His grace cannot give you.
He has allowed you to be here
at this time in history to fulfill His
special purpose for this generation.
~Roy Lessin, DaySpring Products
Make it a great week filled with purpose,
“Choosing the Life You Were Born to Live: How Changing Your Thoughts Will Change Your Life” by Chris Sopa published by Balboa Press.
Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc. You can learn more about her at www.ChrisSopa.com. Find her at Facebook.com/ChrisSopaInternational, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and Google+.Do Your Best…Just For Today
The alarm goes off; you crawl out of bed (hopefully take a shower) and begin your day. The “hamster wheel of life” continues…bringing with it more to do with each moment. Do you ever feel totally consumed with all there is to do? I don’t know about you but to me it feels as if just when I seem to get caught up with my to-do list, more things get piled on. It is as if there is an evil fairy cackling in the background saying, “You thought you were done…ha ha ha…just wait until you see this!”
Many have found themselves caught up in the web of life this summer…busy beyond belief and not knowing what to do first. I know life can be overwhelming at times. It is when life seems to be running us instead of us running our lives that we need to step back and take a look at two things: our priorities and our why?
The only thing that is asked of us is to do our best every day. What defines your best? That depends. Your best will vary depending on the circumstances you find yourself in and where your energy is that day. Are you feeling sick vs. healthy? Energized vs. fatigued? Joyful vs. sad? Sometimes universal energies are moving through and you just feel “off center” for a day. However you feel learn to listen to your body and honor what it is telling you. If you are tired, rest or take a break. If you are at work and it is 2pm when you are at your lowest energy, do those things that take less energy, such as answering emails or filing. Save the high energy tasks for the times of day you feel good.
Your best action is the answer to your productivity issues. Doing your best at any given moment entails knowing how you feel in that moment. Depending on how you feel, give the best you can in that moment with no judgment. Any action is better than no action (and action sometimes includes taking a nap!). If you keep a daily “to-do” list, prioritize that list. Make the #1 thing on your list the most important thing you have to do that day, #2 the second most important thing you need to do that day, etc. Start your day working on #1 and do not move to #2 until #1 is finished (if you are working on a project, allot a certain amount of time to work on #1, such as 2 hours instead of working until it is finished). Even if the day ends and you have only finished #1, you can rest assured you at least finished the most important thing that day; your #1 priority.
Speaking of priorities, what are yours personally? Family, career, money? Take a moment to define them. Balance, my friends, is not a 50/50 split of work and home time…balance is knowing what is important to you in your life right now (your priorities) and putting your energy toward those things on a regular basis. The only time you feel “off” is when you know down deep that you are not putting your time and energy toward those things you feel are important. There is no right or wrong answers when you list your priorities. They are for you and you alone.
When my father was dying of cancer, he lived in Cleveland and I lived in Baltimore. Upon finding out that his cancer was terminal, I made a choice. I decided that I did not want him to pass away and say to myself, “I wish I would have…” So, I made him and my family in Cleveland my priority. I discussed with my husband at the time and my daughters that when grandpa needed me, I would need to go to Cleveland but I loved them very much and it would not be like this forever. I also discussed with my clients that I had a family emergency happening at any time and I may need to call in a replacement speaker if I was not available. I communicated to those whom I had responsibilities. So, when I got a call that my father was in the hospital again, it took me 2 flat seconds to decide what to do. I was in the car or on a plane pronto!
Knowing your priorities also makes decision making so much easier. There is no more going back and forth between, “should I do this or that?”
All we are asked to do is our best. Refrain from being so hard on yourself. You judge yourself harder than anyone around you. Please stop. You are doing the best you can at this moment in your life, with what you know and where you are in your self/spiritual development. There is no one watching you and comparing how you did today vs. yesterday. Only you are doing that. Be kind to yourself today, listen to what those inner nudges are telling you and just do what you know to be your best. Who cares what others think…they are not you nor do they see with your eyes. Love yourself today!
“Do not be concerned about the future; keep your attention on today, and stay in the present moment. Just live one day at a time. Always do your best. Today is the beginning of a new dream!”
~Don Miguel Ruiz
(For more information of “doing your best,” pick up “The Four Agreements,” by Don Miguel Ruiz).
Loving you for who you are today,
Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc. You can learn more about her at www.ChrisSopa.com. Find her at Facebook.com/ChrisSopaInternational, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and Google+.What If You Could Have a “Do Over?”
Life is like a racetrack. It’s the curves that make it worthwhile.
~Regina Brett, God Never Blinks
I recently sat down and took an inventory of my life. I figured I’m going to have a birthday in a couple of weeks, why not have a “check point,” kind of like the race car drivers do. I thought about all of the things I have done, all of the people I have met and all of my accomplishments up until now. I can truly say if age 42 was my last year here on Earth, I did a pretty good job of squeezing as much life out of my time here as possible.
There is one area though where I feel I haven’t gotten all A’s; my romantic life. From the very beginning, I have felt as if my radar was broken. It’s not that I haven’t had some nice guys in my past (my ex husband is actually one of the best - he is truly a gem and I divorced him – see what I mean, broken radar!) but the majority of them have caused me a tremendous amount of pain. I believe that what we focus on is what we create. If this is the case, constantly focusing on my “broken radar” is just going to attract me more of the same. So, I decided to give myself a “do-over.” I decided to re-write my story. The only reality I can cling to in regards to any of my past relationships is my perception of them and as you know, our perception is our reality. I chose to change my perception, hence change my reality.
I sat down, pen and paper in hand, and wrote down the name of every man I ever dated from high school until now; one night stands and all. (close your mouth!) I also wrote down any man that has been in my life whom I felt has had an impact on me in some way, my Dad, any uncles, etc. I then wrote down next to each persons name every lesson I felt I had learned from my experience with him. My lessons ranged from realizing I want a man to be loyal to me and ONLY me all the way to understanding once and for all that I am ME and someone either likes me for me unconditionally or they can take a hike! If they are intimidated by my success, hit the road! The interesting part was the men who caused me the most pain were the ones I learned the most from. Those who cause us the most pain are inevitably our greatest teachers.
I now know that there is purpose and meaning behind every event. There is a Divine reason for every choice you make, whether it is to be with someone or to leave. We never know the reason at the time, but I have learned to never surrender until I know why I began the journey in the first place. I look for the lesson in everything. If we don’t, it will come back around at some point, stakes higher each time, until we learn it. Learn to look at life not so literally but more symbolically; from what I like to call the 10,000 foot view. From the nosebleed seats you can often see what you cannot see when your nose is on the ground.
By giving myself a “do-over” and re-writing my stories, I now can think of the men in my life with gratitude rather than with bitterness, pain and anger. I have changed my vibration to match that which I would like to attract. If you hold the vibration of anger, you will attract angry people. If you hold the vibration of victim, you will attract situations that make you the victim, every time.
What area of your life do you want a do-over? Re-write your story. Make it a fairy tale. One you can look back on and know happened for your highest good. Your problems are not problems, they are blessings in disguise. How else do you think God is going to get you to see your greatness?
Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you’re just coming out of one, or you’re getting ready to go into another one. The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than your comfort. God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy.
~Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life
Wondering where “my man” is now,
Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc. You can learn more about her at www.ChrisSopa.com. Find her at Facebook.com/ChrisSopaInternational, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and Google+.Which Way Do I Go?
“What God chose for you to do is at the intersection where your greatest joy and the worlds greatest need meet.”
~Frederick Buechner (paraphrased)
Have you ever asked yourself the question, “why was I born?” Not in the “I’m worthless so why I am here,” moments, but in the true “what is it I am supposed to do while I am here” moments? We have all at least wondered that once in our lives.
I had a time in my life where I used to feel as if there was something I was supposed to do but I wasn’t’ doing it. Almost as if I missed my calling. It showed up and I somehow just let it pass by.
I used to hate that feeling. I cried at night over it. I used to pray for God to give me an answer as to what he wanted me to do with my life. A friend told me once that God’s gift to us was life and our gift back to God was what we did with that life. I felt as if I was failing God miserably.
He answered my prayer one day in the form of chronic ulcerative colitis. For eight months I felt like I was in the military. What God did to me in those eight miserable months where I almost lost my life was break me down and then build me back up…kind of like what they do at boot camp. I soon realized I wasn’t missing my calling…it was calling me alright; I just didn’t have the self-worth and self-esteem to hear it. We do not take care of what we do not value and I did not value myself at all…so not only was I a mess, but my life was a mess!
I realized as I reflected during those eight months (and I had a LOT of time to reflect) that every job I had over my life time lead me to my “path.” From working at an ice cream shop at age 13 learning customer service and entrepreneurial skills to being a restaurant manager where I learned how to masterfully watch and manage people of many personalities. Each one served a purpose. When I was sick I realized that I could not go back to the job I had at the time as a corporate trainer and I also realized I had to change my beliefs, my thinking and my self-esteem level if I was going to do anything and continue living. I did not feel I was good enough to deserve a good “job.” How would I ever be good enough? What I soon realized was how I was going to be good enough was to help others believe that THEY were good enough…helping others raise their self-esteem and feel worthy of a good life so they did not have to get sick like I did to realize THEY are God’s precious gift and deserve the best life ever!
Your path is undefined. You create it by embracing every waking moment. You have to decide what you want your life to look like and then take one step at a time to getting it. If you want to lose weight, order a side salad instead of fries…that is one small step. You cannot start your journey if you have one foot in the boat and one foot still on the shore… you will go nowhere. Stop playing it safe and put both feet in the boat and let the ocean of life guide you. Cherish every moment, every conversation, every breath you take and every feeling you feel. Let those individual moments be your map to linking your joy to the needs of the world.
Be present. It is called the “present” because it is truly a gift. Put the fear aside and open your gift…you’ll never know what wonderful blessings are waiting for you until you do!
“There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love; there’s only a scarcity of resolve to make it happen.” ~Wayne Dyer
Walking my path one step at a time,
For more information on Chris Sopa International, Inc. go to www.ChrisSopa.com.