imconfident

I sincerely believe that it is far more beneficial and far less costly to help a child build confidence than it is to fix an adult who has little or none.

Wake up and smile

wake up and smile froggy This froggy has the right attitude.   If we wake up and smile, we have a good chance of having a good day.  If we wake up and growl, it’s likely that we won’t have such a good day.    A positive attitude breeds positivity.  A negative attitude breeds negativity.

So what will you do when you wake up tomorrow?  The choice is yours!

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Attitude is everything

What kind of attitude do you have?

  • Do you face the day thinking about what is wrong in your life, the people you don’t like and the things you don’t want to do?
  • Are you stressed out about work or school?
  • Are you carrying a heavy load of anger, fear, bitterness or resentment?
  • Do you live with self-pity and feelings of insecurity?

OR…….

  • Do you face the day with anticipation and hope?
  • Do you look forward to meeting people at work and school?
  • Are you driven by love and the desire to help other people?
  • Are you confident and feel secure about yourself?

We all have a choice as to whether we have a good or bad attitude.  We all face difficulties in our lives but we have the power to make our own choice.  People and situations will hurt us in some way but we don’t have to allow these things to control our lives.  We can face every day with a negative perspective, hating the world and ourselves but we can also face every day with a positive perspective, loving ourselves and showing love to the world.   It’s not what happens in our lives that makes us the person we are, it is how we respond to these things.

Many people believe that they can’t change who they are and they will stay stuck in their bad attitudes, blaming others and the world for their problems and never attempting to make any positive changes.  This negative perspective is often the result of growing up in a negative environment surrounded by people with bad attitudes and it can last a lifetime unless changes are made.

Having a positive attitude is everything.  If you can’t see life with a positive perspective, you will struggle every day and never feel good about yourself or have any hope for the good future.  Here are some ways to help change your attitude:

  1. Say positive affirmations – Start your morning with positive affirmations.  As soon as you wake up, say some positive statements out loud if possible.  Don’t allow time for any negative thoughts to creep into your head.  Tell yourself you are going to have a great day and say it with meaning, even if you don’t really believe it.  The more you repeat these statements, the more you will believe them and they will become habit.  Repeat them several times during the day so you will reprogram your brain to think positive thoughts instead of negative thoughts.
  2. Use positive self-talk – We tend to think negative thoughts which often come out as negative words and actions so we have to try to be consciously aware of what we are thinking.  When we have negative thoughts, we need to stop ourselves and replace them with positive thoughts.  Always talk to yourself in a positive way.
  3. Surround yourself with positive people, places and things –  The things you surround yourself with will greatly determine your attitude.  If you are surrounded by positivity, it will lift you up and make you feel good.  If you are surrounded by negativity, it will tear you down and make you feel bad.   Make friends with people who are kind, encouraging and caring.  Go to places that give you a feeling of peace and contentment.  Look at things that make you happy.  Join an organization, a church group or start an activity.  This doesn’t mean you should never be around anyone that is negative because the world is full of negativity and you can’t avoid it.  Just try to minimize the negative and maximize the positive.
  4. Read motivational books and watch programs that will inspire you – The things you watch and see have a huge impact on your attitude.  Make sure you are looking at things that will reinforce positivity.
  5. Keep active – Doing active things are great builders of a positive attitude.  When you stay fit and healthy, you feel better and enjoy life more.
  6. Volunteer – This is a great way to become more positive.  Helping others has many benefits.  It not only makes the person you are helping feel good, it helps you feel good and it can also have a positive impact on anyone else who may notice your kind act.
  7. Smile – Just a simple action like smiling or greeting other people can have a positive effect on your attitude.  Be enthusiastic and show others that you enjoy life!

Don’t live with a negative attitude.  Being positive is the only way to live.  It isn’t easy and you have to constantly work hard to maintain a positive attitude but you CAN change your attitude.  I know because I’ve done a complete flip and it is well worth the time and effort.  Live and love life!

 

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Are you thankful today?

Yesterday was Thanksgiving Day here in Canada.  Many people get together to enjoy a special meal, make new memories and share old memories.  It is a time of giving thanks for everything we have – our families, our faith, our friends and our freedom.  Thanksgiving Day reminds us of how much we have to be thankful for.  But what about the other 364 days of the year?   Are you thankful everyday?  Are you thankful today?

We shouldn’t really need a special day to remind us of all the things we should be thankful for.  When you wake up the morning, what do you think about?  Our minds tend to think about our problems and this just gets us in a miserable mood right away.  Train your mind to be thankful as soon as you open your eyes and this will help get you in a good mood for the rest of the day.   Think about everything you have to be thankful for – a roof over your head, a bed to sleep in, clean air, a loving family, the ability to see or hear, legs to walk with, arms to carry things, friends, food to eat and the list could go on forever.  Even if you don’t have all these things to be thankful for, there is always something.

Living with a thankful attitude will make your life better.  Don’t allow your negative thoughts to weigh you down.  So, are you thankful today?

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The reason I hate tipping

waitressI’m sure the title of this post will cause some of you to think I am a cheap tightwad.  However, before you pass judgement, please take a few minutes to read my post with an open mind.

Generosity is an admiral quality and I have always considered myself to be a generous person, donating what I can in time and money as much as I can.  However, when it comes to tipping, I don’t feel that we should be compelled to pay an additional 15% for a meal.   Anything extra that we leave on the table should be considered sufficient, whether it is 5, 10 or 15%.

In the past, I’ve had friends who have worked as waiters and waitresses who have told me how difficult their job is and that they rely on their tips just to make a living.   I accept the fact that they work hard, often long hours, helping people who can be demanding or unkind.  However, I have also worked in jobs that were difficult and demanding where I was only making minimum wage, including a cleaning lady, dishwasher, greenhouse worker and retail clerk.

So let’s take a little quiz to help explain why I hate tipping.

  • QUESTION:  What is the minimum hourly wage in Ontario?
    • ANSWER:  $11.00
  • QUESTION:  What is the average hourly wage for a waiter/waitress?
    • ANSWER:  $9
  • QUESTION:  What does a waiter/waitress average in tips per hour?
    • ANSWER:  $5 to $25
  • QUESTION:   Which job gets tips – a waitress, cleaning person, dishwasher, retail clerk, greenhouse worker?
    • ANSWER:   Only the waitress
  • QUESTION:  Which job would be more physically and emotionally demanding – a waiter, cleaning person, retail clerk, greenhouse worker?
    • ANSWER:  It would depend on the situation, however the greenhouse worker is a much more physically demanding position
  • QUESTION:  What qualifications or educational requirements are needed for a waiter/waitress?
    • ANSWER:  No specific requirements.  Experience is preferred.

I agree that most waiters and waitresses work hard but their job is no more physically or emotionally difficult than many other minimum wage jobs.  Even if they aren’t making minimum wage, just one $5 tip per hour will bring them above and often they will average $15-$25 or more per hour which is a decent wage for a position that requires no education or experience.  I’m sorry but I get tired of hearing these complaints from waiters/waitresses:

  • My job is so strenuous. – Can I introduce you to my friend, a single mom, who works all day in the hot sun in a greenhouse, making minimum wage and no tips?
  • The customers are demanding, annoying, unruly.  – Can I introduce you to my friend, a cashier in a retail store, who deals with rude, annoying clients all day, making minimum wage and no tips?
  • I get sweaty and dirty. – Can I introduce you to my friend, a cleaning lady, who scrubs floors and toilets all day because her husband lost his job, making minimum wage and no tips?

In my opinion,  tipping is a money grab.  It just encourages people to expect something whether or not they deserve it and it pressures people to pay so they don’t look bad.  When customers don’t pay out the expected tip, they will likely get a rude unspoken comment or a dirty look.    Tipping is supposed to be a nice way of saying thanks but too many people think they are entitled instead of being thankful.

It would solve a lot of problems if restaurants would just increase their prices slightly and pay their employees minimum wage.  I would rather pay a few dollars more for a meal knowing my server is getting a regular pay cheque and not having to think about how much my tip will be.  Of course that will not likely ever happen, so when I do eat out, I will continue to tip, usually about 10% and I hope that my waiter/waitress appreciates this.

 

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Attitude is important

The kind of attitude we have predicts the kind of life we will live.  If we have a positive, cheery attitude we will have a life of joy and peace.  If we have a negative, critical attitude we will have a life of misery and turmoil.  We often think that other people and things are causing us to be unhappy but it is really our bad attitude.  Here are some of the bad attitudes that will keep us stuck in the same place and struggling through our lives:

  1. AN IRRESPONSIBLE ATTITUDE – believing that someone else is responsible for their problems
  2. A CRITICAL ATTITUDE – finding fault with everything
  3. A QUITTING ATTITUDE – believing that everything is just too hard and failure is inevitable
  4. A NO HOPE ATTITUDE – living in the past and believing that our future will be just as bad
  5. AN IMPATIENT ATTITUDE – wanting things to happen immediately and having no patience to wait
  6. A SELF-PITYING ATTITUDE – always feeling sorry for yourself
  7. A ENTITLEMENT ATTTUDE – believing that you deserve everything you want

Having any of these bad attitudes will keep us from enjoying the wonderful life that we deserve.  If we want to find happiness and success in life, we need to develop a positive attitude and be thankful for what we have.

What kind of attitude do you have?   Is it on the list above?  Don’t worry, it is never too late to change.  You can ditch that bad attitude by making some positive choices.

  • Choose to look for the good in your life instead of the bad
  • Choose to think positive thoughts instead of negative thoughts
  • Choose to live in the present and not in the past
  • Choose to be kind and helpful to others
  • Choose to be patient and wait for good things to happen
  • Choose to care about other people first before yourself
  • Choose to accept your mistakes as learning experiences
  • Choose to keep going towards your goals instead of quitting
  • Choose to be responsible for your own actions
  • Choose to accept yourself as a unique and wonderful individual

 

 

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Misery loves company

misery loves companyThere is a lot of truth in this expression.  When people are miserable, they often gain some degree of comfort knowing that others around them are miserable too.

Being around negative people can often cause us to be negative ourselves if we are codependent on other people’s behaviour and don’t have control over our emotions.

We should never allow anyone to make us unhappy.   Many people do not even realize that they can control their emotions and remain happy even in difficult situations.  Just because a family member or friend is unhappy, it does not mean that we have to be unhappy.   We have the choice as to what kind of attitude we will have and it doesn’t have to be the same as the people around us.    We have to change from a negative mindset to a positive mindset.

When confronted by negative people who are angry, upset or miserable, remain calm.   Let the person know that you love them and will support them, but that you will not allow their negative thinking to affect your life.   They have to realize that they cannot control your emotions and understand that they need to try to control their own emotions.

Try to surround yourself with positive people, places and things so you can build your own confidence and strengthen your esteem.   Replace any bad habits with good habits and keep practicing every day.   Then you can be a good example for the negative people around you and have a positive influence on their attitude.

What kind of attitude do you have?  Are you a miserable person or a joyful person?  Do you need an attitude adjustment?  Attitudes can be catching.  What are people catching from you?

 

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Are you an honest person?

girl thinkingIf I asked you whether or not you were an honest person, what would your reply be?  Yes.  No.  Maybe.  I’m not sure.

The dictionary states that honesty is:

  • a quality of being upright and fair
  • being truthful and sincere
  • having freedom from being deceitful or fraudulent
  • having integrity and honour

Do you fulfill all these qualities?  Some people think they are honest but if they really looked deep inside themselves they would discover some things that really don’t measure up to being totally honest.

Here is a short quiz on honesty.

  1. Have you ever called in sick to work when you were feeling okay?   O Yes   O No
  2. Have you ever cheated on a test?  O Yes  O No
  3. If you got home after buying groceries and discovered that you had not paid for an item costing $10, would you just be happy that you saved some money?  O Yes  O No
  4. Are you a business person who does cash jobs to avoid paying taxes?  O Yes  O No
  5. Would you keep a wallet that you found containing $100?  O Yes  O No
  6. Do you take home pens and other items from work?  O Yes  O No
  7. Do you cheat on your income tax?  O Yes  O No
  8. Do you tell lies about yourself to get other people to admire you?  O Yes  O No
  9. Have you ever used someone else’s unprotected internet access?  O Yes  O No
  10. If a cashier gave you too much change would you just leave and not say anything?  O Yes  O No

Count up the YES and NO answers.  How did you score?  The more NO answers you have, the more honest you are.   The more YES answers, the more dishonest you are.  Did your answers surprise you?  Did you think you were an honest person and now have doubts?

What would you do if you found out your child had cheated on an examination?  What if your child was caught stealing or lying?  Would you accept this as being OKAY??   Your children learn their behaviours and attitudes from the people around them.  Are you teaching them how to be honest and are you following your own advice?

It is hard to be totally honest in a world that promotes deception, half-truths, white lies, exaggerations, cheating, lying and stealing.   We are led to believe that we have to be dishonest sometimes and that small things are unimportant.  We follow the example of others and compromise so we can fit in and be accepted.   We lose ourselves in a sea of dishonesty which just destroys our confidence and our ability to make good choices.

We have to stop ourselves from doing things that seem to make life easier and create a good habit of being honest.    This takes discipline and the ability to look at life from a positive perspective.   Being dishonest takes a lot of energy that can wear us down but being honest gives us positive energy.

Honesty makes you a more loving, responsible and reliable person that will gain the respect of other people.    Always try to be honest with yourself and others.

 

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Teach your children moral values

Happy Family Laughing in BedLearning is a passion of mine and I’m always searching for new books and looking up information.  My lending library is over 500 books now and still growing.  Many of these books are about parenting and they have really helped me become more aware of how we should be raising our children.  I seriously wish that I had done this research before my children were born because I was totally unprepared to raise child.

There are so many things that we need to think about, especially what kind of example we are setting for our children.   They are watching and imitating almost everything we say and do.  Our words and actions have a huge impact on them, either in a positive or negative way.  We don’t even realize how much influence we have on their adult lives.

It is very important to teach your children good moral values.   Children need to have strong morals in a world that is becoming more violent every day.  Youth violence is on the rise and many violent acts are being committed by children as young as 6 years old.  Stats show that peer cruelty is increasing and an estimated 160,000 children miss school in the states every day because they fear being picked on or physically injured by their peers.  Drugs and alcohol are easily accessible in the schools.  Weapons are being used on the playground.  Kids are cheating on their exams or stealing from stores with absolutely no remorse.  These things are happening because children are not being taught moral values.

Parents should start teaching their children moral values as soon as they are able to understand.  Teach them how to say ‘please’ and ‘thanks’, how to be nice to their siblings or friends, how to show respect to other people.   Society will without a doubt have a negative effect on your children, but if they have learned strong moral values and have developed a sense of right and wrong, they will be able to withstand any negative pressures and be empowered to do the right thing.  When parents do not teach their children about morals, they are most likely to develop destructive negative habits that could potentially destroy any change of happiness or success in their lives.

Teach your children to:

  • be loving and kind
  • be respectful and show consideration
  • be empathetic (understand how others feel)
  • be fair and just
  • be tolerant and appreciate the differences in other people
  • have self-control and not act out in anger or frustration
  • make good choices and always do the right thing

Are you teaching your children good moral values?

 

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Do you feel like an outcast?

Join the crowd.  There are probably more people in the world that feel unaccepted, unappreciated and unwanted than there are people who feel accepted, appreciated and wanted.  Why???  Because we don’t see our true value.  We see ourselves through the eyes of the world:  eyes that criticize, tear down, ridicule, make us feel like there is something wrong with us and nothing we can ever do will be good enough.  I understand because I always felt like an outcast but I have good news for you…………

You are not a freak, a loser, a weirdo!

There is nothing wrong with you!

You are an awesome creation with special talents!

You are supposed to be different from anyone else!

You should celebrate your uniqueness and be proud of who you are!

Don’t ever feel bad about yourself because of what people have said or done!

Just be the best person you can be!

Show love and kindness to others and expect others to treat you with respect!

Here is a great song that will get you in the proper attitude.    You don’t have to be part of the ‘in-crowd’ or whatever you call those ‘special’ people.  You are you and that is amazing!  Enjoy…..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWXYW9kq8ns

 

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Who has hurt you?

blue sad faceEveryone in this world has been hurt in some way.   In fact, many of us could probably write a best-selling movie depicting all the pain we have been through.  It would describe how we were abused, rejected, disappointed, neglected, abandoned, ridiculed, deceived, betrayed or humiliated.   But how would the movie end?  Would it show us still struggling with our pain or enjoying our new-found happiness and peace?

In order to get over past hurts and no longer be negatively affected by them, we have to face the pain and work through it.  It is like being trapped in a room that is surrounded by fire and the only exit is on the other side of the fire.   The only way out is to find a way to get through the fire and get to safety.   This means that we get a little burnt and feel more pain, but real freedom is only found when we go through our pain.  You don’t have to dwell on past pain.  It is only a bad habit that can be broken with patience and commitment.

Unfortunately, many of us are not able to get over past hurts that easily and they often become a burden that many of us carry right through life.

  • Some of us try to forget what happened and hope that the pain will eventually go away.   This might work for a while, but the pain will keep surfacing from time to time and cause more suffering
  • Some of us try to pretend that it doesn’t matter anymore and that we are just fine.   This also might work for a while, but when the pain comes back it will remind us that we are not fine.
  • Others keep thinking about the pain and it continues to destroy us a little at a time.    Living in our pain every day is not a healthy way to live.

If you want to get rid of your pain, the first thing to do is to open your heart and express your feelings.  You have to be totally honest with yourself.    Find someone you can trust and talk to them.  If you don’t have a trusted family member or friend and you are struggling with some serious issues, make an appointment with your family doctor or pastor who can discuss some options with you.

The next thing you need to do is start focusing on the positives and developing a thankful attitude.  Think about all the good things in your life and be thankful for the small joys – sunshine, a smile, good friends.   Once you have created a new habit of being positive and enjoying your life, past pains will no longer have a hold on you.   Writing is also very therapeutic.   Get a journal and write down your thoughts and feelings.   Make a gratitude journal!

Work on building your confidence and esteem.  When you are secure and feel good about yourself, you won’t allow other people to hurt you.

Surround yourself with people who are caring and supportive.  Listen to them and believe it when they tell you what a wonderful person you are.  People who have been hurt will often feel worthless and think they have no value.  We may think we deserve their cruel actions or unkind words but we should never believe these lies because we are all valuable in our own way.  Many times when people hurt us, it is because they are hurting themselves in some way and are just acting out to release their own pain.

Most importantly, you need to let go of your pain.  Holding on to the past is no good for you.  It just keeps you stuck and struggling.   Forgive those who hurt you.  When  you forgive, you are not letting them off the hook or saying it was okay that they hurt you.  Forgiveness is releasing your own pain so you can heal.

You are the only one who can decide to let go of the pain.  Do you want peace or pain?  The choice is yours.

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