3 Key Steps to Gratitude and Core Resilience

Orange tabby kitten surrenders lacking resilience

Like a character in Game of Thrones, I keep pointing out winter is coming. I was not supposed to be here for winter. I suffer from Seasonal Affected Disorder, or SAD for short. Apt because that’s what the seemingly endless grey days make me — sad. However, thanks to the worldwide pandemic, I am stuck here until at least next spring. 

But I’m still grateful to be here right now.

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Word Association Exercise

Tiny chihuahua with fake red mohawk hair and spiked leather collar lying on a table

The Word Association Exercise is a discovery exercise. It is designed to help you explore and uncover your unconscious connections between certain concepts. It is especially useful if you find yourself resistant to a task you know will help you achieve a goal or procrastinating on an idea you believe will make your life better in some way. It can also be used when you feel compelled to do something that you believe would have a negative impact on your life. It can also be useful as a journaling prompt or writing exercise.

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The Why Exercise: What’s My Motivation?

redheaded toddler biting lip with question marks

The Why Exercise examines your automatic assumptions, bias, and programming. If you aren’t getting really annoyed or uncomfortable, it’s a good sign you need to keep digging. Knowing why you believe something or are pursuing a goal is increases your motivation. We’re far more likely to exercise because we believe it will reduce the chance of dementia or to reach our goal of completing the London Marathon than if we plan to exercise because our doctor says we should.

This is a great exercise to use whenever you are thinking of buying something or investing time or money in something especially on impulse or if it increases your debt. The Why Exercise causes you to slow down and examine your motivation — and your priorities.

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Isolation Is the Dream-killer, Not Your Rotten Attitude

Coyote howling in a rocky meadow of wildflowers

Social isolation damages our success as well as our mental and physical health. And I speak from personal experience. I’m  terrible at networking — online or in person. So please, take just 18 minutes to watch this delightfully inspiring TEDx talk by Barbara Sher about the power of connection — with strangers.

And discover how you can make your dreams come true.

I’m not kidding.

This is not woo-woo. As a matter of fact, Barbara Sher is going to trash-talk “positive thinking.” (And I’m pretty certain she’d have a few things to say about “The Secret” as well. She apparently doesn’t take any nonsensical guff.)

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How SMART Are Your Goals?

a white owl reminds us to make SMART goals to succeed

Roughly 40% of the population make New Year’s Resolutions. The most popular New Year’s Resolutions (in no particular order) are: lose weight, get in shape, spend less (or save more), and make more money. All worthy aspirations. However, they aren’t SMART goals. And because they aren’t SMART, they are usually dumped within 30 days. If we want to actually achieve our goals, we need to make better. We need to make them SMART goals.

What are SMART Goals?:

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