Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Day 79 - Hold your tongue.

One of the biggest challenges for most people is struggling to hold their tongue; they rather have the last word, whether it’s good or bad. I've never had an issue in this department as I rather hold my tongue than lash out at someone; although, contrary to most, when it comes to my loved ones such as family and friends, holding my tongue is a piece of cake.

However, I do struggle with practicing what I preach; it doesn’t take much fuel to start a fire of complaints, and once those complaints come off of your lips the negative energy takes over your body. Rather than looking at the positives in life, most people tend to bring out the negative and that is a constant battle for me.

The truth is, we all complain, no matter how happy our lives are we still have those days where we can’t help but to grumble. Sometimes we complain without even realizing it and realistically it’s easier to complain about the situation than to do something to fix it. Over time I’ve realized that when you hold your tongue and put your mind toward a more positive outlook rather than complaining, not only do you feel better overall but you can think clearly to make the positive changes for the better.

Today, when asked how my day has been, instead of complaining about the horrible Miami traffic, or about the sales representative who made me wait in line for what seemed like forever, or even about the overflow of vendor e-mails and phone calls; I held my tongue and silently thought about how grateful I was to have a car to get me to work, money in my wallet to allow me to shop and to have such an amazing job which most wish they had. I will continue to practice what I preach because life is such a beautiful thing to waste, and things are taken from you in an instant – realizing how blessed we all truly are, changes our view on life and diffuses the negatives which aren’t really so bad after all.©

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Day 78 - Take a yoga class.

This deed was pretty easy because I have been doing yoga now for a little over 1 ½ years; I am so passionate about it that I try to attend class at least 4 times a week or more. Although this deed didn’t introduce me to something new, it was still exciting for me because although I am a yogi bear and know the basic story behind yoga and where it was originated, I’ve never really known the in-depth details and this allowed me to look further into yoga so that I have a stronger knowledge of its background and can deepen my practice.

Born in India, almost 26,000 years ago, yoga is believed to have evolved during the period of the 'Sat Yuga' which is known as their Golden Age – an era in India known for everlasting peace and abundant blessings; filled with seekers of the Eternal Truth. Which is why, even in today's day and age, the word 'yoga' alone radiates peace and tranquility, its meaning is 'to join or unite’. The idea of yoga was for the individual self to unite with their Cosmic Consciousness or the Universal Spirit and yoga was and still is a means to achieve this goal.

It's funny because most people see yoga as this stretching exercise with a bunch of girls in very stretchy clothes who try to tie themselves into very complicated knots for an hour. But, that couldn't be further from the truth.

Yoga is integration and mastery over all levels of the mind, so not only are you working out your body physically but you are also working out your mind mentally. Not to mention that yoga relaxes and puts you in a zen level of peace through Savasana which is a type of meditation that is done at the end of every practice. I find Savasana to be the hardest pose of all, because there are always 100 thoughts running through your mind and it’s hard to clear it completely. But once mastered, you’ll feel a feeling of total relaxation and peace take over your body and it’s guaranteed to leave you with that sensation for the rest of the day.

There are many benefits to practicing and deepening your yoga practice, here are just a few that are sure to make you move forward with taking a yoga class:

  • Increase your flexibility & physical strength: Most yoga poses lengthen the ligaments, tendons, and muscles in your body which means you will notice an increase in your body's flexibility when practicing yoga. The more flexible and stronger you become through your practice, the less likely you are to injure yourself during other physical activities and in your everyday life.
  • Reduce stress: Yoga is not only an exercise for the body but also for the mind. Yoga focuses on controlling your breath which allows the body AND mind to relax. Not to mention, at the end of every yoga practice, you do Savasana in which you lie on your back, meditate and go into a state of complete relaxation; leaving every thought and feeling out of your life for those 10-15 minutes. After this, you usually leave the class feeling like Jell-O and like a brand new person. Don't we all need this?
  • Better mood: Feeling down or sad? Like most exercises, you feel great afterward! Yoga increases your body’s serotonin levels which makes you happy. I walk out of class with ‘yoga high' or 'yoga glow' every time I attend a class.
  • Maintain a healthy weight: Being a yogi bear I can tell you by experience, yoga works out every single part of your body and although I have always worked out and been athletic, I have never been so toned in my life. A good yoga class will have you sweating no matter what the temperature in the room is! Yoga is a great way to supplement your regular exercise routine and help you keep your body lean, healthy, and maintain your desired weight.
There are countless reasons and benefits to why you should take up yoga as soon as possible. Your best way to find out if yoga is right for you is to try it out for yourself. Take up yoga today, I promise you will not regret it and will end up wanting to spread the word about yoga and how fabulous it is!!

'Be careful with your thoughts, for they become your words. Be careful with your words, for they become your actions. Be careful with your actions, for they become your habits. Be careful with your habits, for they become your character. Be careful with your character, for it becomes your destiny.’ – Anonymous♥

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Day 77 - Make an effort to mend a rift in a friendship.

Friendship is paramount to me; I cherish my friends, & will bend over backwards for them. For me friendship is one of the most treasured things in life. After all, friends love you at your worst, understand your past, believe in your future, & accept you today just the way you are. Friends are angels sent from heaven to catch you when you fall, speak when words are needed, & to share the silence when they are not.

In life, every single relationship you will have will require work; whether it be family, romantic, or friendship. There will always be hard times & good times, it's easy to enjoy the good times but when someone’s there for you through the bad – that’s true friendship. It basically comes down to you deciding whether working on that relationship is worth it or not.

According to one of my favorite philosophers of all time, Aristotle, there are three types of friendships throughout our lifetime: friendships of utility, friendships of pleasure, & friendships of the good.

I.                   Friends of Utility also known as friends of usefulness exist between you & someone who is useful to you in some way or the other. For instance, perhaps you’re friendly with your co-worker in the office next to yours because he helps you figure out the printer when it jams, or you keep in contact with that single girl from your study group because when you have no one else to go out with you know she's always accessible. Basically you scratch my back & I'll scratch yours; business partners, co-workers, & classmates often fit into this category.

II.                Next there's Friendships of Pleasure better known as friendships of mutual interests, they exist between those whose company you enjoy. The foundation of this friendship is a similar interest; in example sharing the same hobby such as painting, going for long bike rides, or gym buddies. This is the kind of person in which you enjoy a little chit-chat or a good joke. You& this person share a common enjoyment, & that's where your friendship is ingrained. If you lose interest in that common pleasure, there's a big possibility the friendship will end.

III.             Finally, saving the best for last, there's Friendships of the Good, better known as friendships of virtue. These types of friendships are based on mutual respect& admiration; they are usually the types of friendships that take longer to build than the other two kinds -- but they're also more powerful & enduring. You value one another as individuals, enjoy each other’s company& share similar values & goals. You are their friend, not for how they can benefit you or how they can bring you gratification, but simply because you are fond of them. This is definitely the highest form of friendship.

If you have a friendship of asset, you must realize it's hard to come about & you should work hard at maintaining it. They say that mending a rift in a friendship requires courage, honesty, & understanding; I agree to a certain extent, but the way I see it is that it's as simple as -- letting go of your pride.

The older I've gotten, I've learned that it is better to lose your pride with someone you love rather than to lose that someone you love with your useless pride. If I'm wrong, I admit I'm wrong because I don't want to be one of those people whose pride overtakes their happiness. I've had a friend whom I have been on a rocky foundation with for the last month or so. She recently ended things with her boyfriend & contacted me to apologize & say she missed me, I of course didn't reply because my thoughts were instantly 'friendship of utility'. Today, I decided to step up & let her know how I felt; we ended up mending our friendship & it felt nice knowing that I'm not being prideful or boastful, rather doing what I do best & being loving. You can't expect everyone to treat you how you treat them, but you can give them love from afar & not let their lack of enthusiasm affect you.

Today, be the bigger person & mend a rift in a friendship – especially if it's a friendship of high merit. Even if it's not, forgive that person, show them your peace & love so that you can move on with joy & happiness in your heart rather than arrogance. It will feel great in the long run & you'll know that as you travel along this path called life, you won't be leaving any feelings of regret, negativity, or pride behind you.

“No one can make you feel inferior without your
consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Day 76 - Drink eight glasses of water.

I've always been big on drinking water, even as a child I preferred water or juice over soda any day (I know – I was a weird kid). Many people don't realize the benefits that drinking water every day brings. Did you know that your body is made up of about 70% of water? Your brain alone is made up of 90% water & it does not function well unless it's hydrated.

In order for our bodies to function properly we need to drink enough water to make up for the amount of water our bodies release daily; your body loses water every time you breath, sweat, use the restroom, etc. Water hydrates & lubricates every cell & organ in your body, it also fights fatigue, surges your metabolism, plumps up the skin, & keeps headaches away.

For some people, like my mother for example, drinking water is torture because they absolutely despise the taste of ‘nothing’. Luckily for them, some foods such as celery, tomatoes, soups, & different types of melon are rich in fluid & help you obtain the water that your body requires.
During the week while at work I am excellent about drinking water & I usually drink at least a gallon of water a day without even trying; my trick to drinking so much water is, I buy the biggest water bottle of Evian from my local grocery store which is 1.5 Liters. Knowing that 1 Gallon contains 4 Liters, I make it a point to drink at least 3 bottles a day which is a little over a gallon. Don't get me wrong, some days I drink less & some days I'm like a fish & drink more, but it's all about getting your body used to it.

It’s funny because I’ve noticed the more water I drink the thirstier I get. The reason for that is that your body gets used to being quenched & once it reaches a normal intake, it desires more. Today I drank over 8 glasses of water & as always felt great; you should try doing the same & reap the benefits of drinking more water.

The following are 3 reasons you might want to opt and drink more H2O on a daily basis:
·         Drinking water has been proven by doctors to help withweight loss; although water doesn't have any magical effect on weight loss it is more filling than any other beverage & is zero calories. Not to mention, when most people get hungry & get the urge to eat, your body is actually just thirsty & will be satisfied with a glass of water instead of that sweet snack you might want to grab that will go straight to your thighs.
·         In taking water boosts your energy levels & relieves fatigue; since your brain is mostly water, drinking it helps you focus & concentrate better, it also helps you be more alert.
·         Water improves your skin complexion by moisturizing your skin, keeping it fresh, soft, glowing & smooth. Another plus – it helps reduce wrinkles & is proven to be the best anti-aging treatment around.
Who wouldn't drink something that makes you beautiful, skinny, & healthy?? Next time you’re thirsty, go for some water, even if it's not 8 glasses, a little is better than none!!♥

Monday, June 3, 2013

Day 75 - Bake your favorite cookies, and share.

For those of you who know me, I am a cookie monster; in fact, I'd choose dessert over an actual meal any day of the week. So, it shouldn't come as a surprise that this deed made me joyful, because not only did I have to do one of my favorite things – baking, but, I also got to eat one of my favorite things – brownies.

I decided instead of baking cookies, I would bake cookie dough brownies; they were part cookie dough so they should count as cookies and mostly because I really wanted one for myself. Lol.

I spent my entire Sunday evening slaving away in the kitchen baking while drinking wine – horrible night I know ;). The results were delicious; my family begged for them to be able to eat all of them and for me not to take any to my co-workers.  I of course objected and brought some into work this morning. My co-workers were delightedly stunned and the brownies were gone within 10 minutes.

I love pleasing others so it was nice to not only bring a smile to my families face but to also bring a smile to my co-workers on the most dreaded day of the week – Monday. I encourage everyone to make something sweet this week and share with whomever your heart desires you to share with; I promise it will make you happy you did so. Not to mention, who doesn’t love a baking/wine night?♥

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Day 73 - Tell the story of the person you are named after.

Names usually communicate so much more than a simple tag or label of what to call you. Your name becomes the representation of who you are; who you are to your family, to your boss, to your friends, to the businessman in the office or the waitress at your table. Your name is a representation of YOU.

In the universe everything has been given a name. And, behind each name there resides a meaning. Parent's usually put a lot of time and effort into the decision of what to name their children and it's something that will stay with you (for the most part) for the rest of your life.

When my parents got the news of their first child, my brother, they made an agreement that if my father got to name their son, my mother would be able to choose the name of their first daughter. A year later, when news hit of my expectancy, my mother says she was excited to choose a name for me. Her first choice was Ashley, but when she came across the name Cynthia in a baby book she fell in love with it right away. My name, Cynthia, is a Greek origin which means Greek god. The name derives its meaning from Mount Kynthos and was the name of the Greek moon goddess. She loved the meaning of my name and the history of it, not to mention, she also adored the fact that a famous Roman poet Propertius used the name Cynthia in many of his love poetry which she thought was, in her words,"dreamy and romantic".

At a very young age, my mother found that it was hard for people to spell my name or pronounce it correctly so she decided to nickname me Cindee, spelling it differently than the normal Cindy name, because if you knew my mother, you’d know that she strives to be different and unique. The name Cindee quickly stuck, and now as an adult I can say not many people know me by my full name; I believe the only person who still calls me by my first name is my grandmother. I've asked my mother many times, why she didn't just name me Cindee if she intended to call me that all along, she just laughs and tells me that she still loves my full name and doesn't regret it one bit. As for me, either names are okay with me, but sometimes it will take me longer to look if you’re calling me by my first name, being that I’m not used to it. What about you, what's the story about your name? It’s nice to find out little things like the reason behind your name which one day you can tell your children or grandchildren. I’d love to hear the stories behind your name, so comment below!♥

Cynthia prima suis miserum me cepit ocellis,contactum nullis ante cupidinibus.
"Cynthia first captivated wretched me with her eyes,
I who had never before been touched by Cupid." (I.1.1-2)


Saturday, May 18, 2013

UPDATE on Day 68 - Give a homeless person a clean blanket.

As mentioned previously in my former deed, to give a homeless person a blanket; I signed up and was to attend an orientation for Miami Dade Rescue to feed and interact with the homeless individuals of South Florida.

When I initially signed up with the Miami Rescue Mission I really had no idea about the organization; the sole reason I chose them was because they are one of the biggest shelters in Miami, Florida that feed and take in any homeless person off of the street. Now for those of you who are wondering why I had to attend an orientation in the first place in order to feed the homeless, it’s because now a days organizations like to go over policies and guidelines of what you should wear when working with them as well as explain what to do in case of an emergency or with a particular situation.

Upon attending orientation today I learned a lot about this particular organization and how truly remarkable they are. The organization is a non-profit, faith-based group focused on ministry to the homeless and needy in South Florida with a slogan of "No One is Homeless"; it was founded in 1922 by a Christian couple whose goal was to feed as many hungry stomachs as possible. Now don't let the faith based part make you stray, they welcome anyone with helping hands of any faith or no faith at all.

Last year they provided over 343,286 bed nights and served nearly 859,883 meals to the homeless men, women and children of South Florida.

I originally began this deed so that I could give a homeless person a clean blanket; but this one deed has opened my eyes more than I could have ever imagined and moved me in so many ways. I am currently awaiting my background check because not only would I like to feed the homeless but I've decided I want to work with women and their children during specialty events such as birthday parties, self-esteem classes, career and hygiene workshops, etc.

I will also be getting involved with 'Operation Hope Tote' which is a drive they are currently having to fill as many little hope tote's as possible for the homeless. A Hope Tote is a small purple bag that can be filled with inexpensive, simple day to day items we take advantage of such as a toothbrush and toothpaste, soap or body wash, shampoo, deodorant, wash cloths, disposable razors, underwear, etc. These tote's are made to make the person feel better so that they can hopefully make better changes for themselves – such as getting involved with their education, work training, recovery and spiritual guidance.

If you are in the Miami or Broward area I urge you to get involved with this wonderful organization; not only will it change your life, but it will also, hopefully, change someone else’s life; like the men in the below video who graduated thanks to the Miami Rescue Mission. In addition, if you would like to donate or get involved with Operation Hope Tote, you can contact Melissa Singh, via-email at msingh@caringplace.org or via-telephone at (305) 572-2002; I will also be picking up items for donation so comment below and I would be more than happy to pick up anything you are willing to contribute.  

You also be a part of their Meal(s)-A-Month-Club by donating $2.00 a month. For as little as $2.00 you can provide a hot meal to the homeless and hungry; that's only $24.00 a year. For that small amount you're providing meals during the year for those that are in great need and who thanks to your help, might turn around their life, like so many have already done.  If you really think about it, in today’s society $24.00 doesn’t make a significant difference on your pocket book, but you’ll be making a big difference in someone’s life!!!

"I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love." Mother Teresa♥

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Day 72 - Learn how to say thank you in other languages so you can thank people in their native tongues.

They say that one of the best phrases you can learn when traveling in another country is 'thank you'. Not only does it show your gratitude for a person's help, but also a certain level of respect in the fact that you're attempting to reach out in their local language.

There are many good reasons to learn another language or words in another language; one of the best reasons is that language learning is an example of "cognitive reserve", which is something that keeps the mind active in the same way puzzles and games do.  Scientists have found that one of the best methods of fending off the symptoms of dementia (a popular form of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease) and brain damage is by building up your ‘cognitive reserve’.  People who live intellectually stimulating lives and who are better educated are somehow better protected against the factors that trigger mental decline.

Not to mention but the majority of the world does not speak English; in today’s society we are so isolated that we hardly realize this. More and more towns and cities in the United States are becoming diversified and we are coming into contact with more non-English speakers all of the time. So learning another language will benefit you in terms of business and personal relationships by being able to communicate with people in their language. This will set you apart and gain immediate respect and credibility.

Today I will be trying to memorize how to say ‘thank you’ in 5 different languages. I chose the following 5 languages because not only do I think they common languages spoken throughout, but they are also languages that have intrigued me.  

  1. French – Thank you in French is ‘Merci’ (pronounced mair-see)
  2. Swahili (language of Africa) – Thank you in Swahili is ‘Asante’ (pronounced ah-SAWN-tay)
  3. Hindi (language of India) – Thank you in Hindi is ‘Shukriya’ (pronounced shook-ri-ya
  4. Chinese – Thank you in Chinese is ‘Xiè Xiè’(pronounced shi-e shi-e)
  5. Italian – Thank you in Italian is ‘Grazie’ (pronounced gra-zee)
Although I cannot guarantee I will remember the above gratitude phrases, I will definitely make it a point to learn words in another language each time I travel and will also try to practice these five phrases on a weekly basis. You should do the same, try to memorize at least one ‘thank you’ phrase in another language today. We all know how important manners are and it’s a nice feeling when you show thankfulness to another person, especially in their native tongue.♥

"To have another language is to possess a second soul." - Charlemagne♥


Saturday, May 4, 2013

Day 71 - Visit a community garden.

I must say, out of all of the deeds I have completed thus far, this has got to be my favorite one. Mainly because, until today, I had no idea "community gardens" existed, let alone what a community garden was. Once I found out exactly what it was, I entirely fell in love with the concept. The image of communities getting together, gardening, laughing and sharing is a divine conception.

For those of you who are as clueless as I was, a community garden is basically a piece of land/property in your community that is owned by the city or privately, where you can grow your own food in small plots with the support of other gardeners and take home a share of what is produced. Some charge an annual fee to cover things like water, supplies, etc.  but the cost isn’t usually that ample.

The idea fascinated me and when I searched ‘Miami community gardens’ in Google I was shocked with the abundance of there being so many and I was yet to know they existed.  I would expect gardens like these to be located in places with diverse cultures such as New York City but definitely not Miami, I guess we are moving’ on up in diversity!

Today, I made a list of gardens nearest to me and left on my journey to see this magnificent concept in person.  The first couple of gardens I went to were closed and although I was disappointed I looked at them through the gates and was left in admiration. Not to mention, one of them was a in a gorgeous park that was a ‘hidden gem’, if it wasn’t for this deed I would had never known this park existed. As soon as I saw this park, I envisioned myself on a weekend afternoon, laying out in the park all day reading and definitely added it to my “favorite parks” list.

I couldn’t help but be discouraged on my way to the last park on my list because although I saw the gardens were beautiful, they were closed so I really couldn’t go in to get an up-close look. I really didn’t get why they were all closed, it was a beautiful Saturday afternoon with the sun shining, a hint of a breeze and bright blue clouds; the perfect day to spend outdoors gardening.  It took me a while to actually find the garden and I finally found it hidden in between apartment buildings on the beach and when I saw it I was left in amazement; it was small but lovely, the color burst from every plant, the gardeners working on their plots and kids running and playing – it was truly out of a movie.  I sat in the garden for about an hour admiring the plants, people, and reading my book, I knew I would be visiting again from how much I loved the serene atmosphere. I am extremely thankful for this Good Deed book and project, especially on days like today!

I insist you look up community gardens in your area, you will be shocked to see how many there are! You'll fall in love with the variety in age, culture, and the people's backgrounds in every garden you visit. Everyone has something unique and different to share, it's a lovely concept, one that I adore and I hope you'll love it too. Let me know your experiences and stories if you do visit a garden near you, I'd be delighted to hear them!!!♥

"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow." - Audrey Hepburn♥

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Day 70 - Bring your coworker a coffee.

Research shows that 3 out of 5 American's spend more hours at work than they do at home. Work takes up a decent portion of our lives; and it feels like a second home to most people; spending the majority of our week with co-workers, a group of people that are not family.

Another interesting fact; the American Psychological Association says studies show that people who have a good peer support system at work may live longer than people who don't have such a support system.

In actuality, you don't have to be friends with your co-workers, but to make your day go by smoothly; it's wise to be on good terms with them. This doesn't particularly mean you have to spend time outside of the office with them. But while you're in the same working environment, being able to talk on a friendly or cordial basis is highly important. Even if you don't particularly care for a fellow employee, doing your part to keep the peace can go a long way towards showing true professionalism in your career.

I am pretty fortunate when it comes to my work situation. For the most part I get along with my co-workers and enjoy what I do (on a good day). Every morning I dread coming into the office and having to make myself a coffee. On special occasions I’ve come into work and the guards have an iced coffee sitting at my desk waiting for me and ready to drink. On those days I smile from ear to ear, that small simple gesture makes my entire day.

My co-workers love me doing this "good deed project" because they have reaped the benefits of my deeds such as today when I brought them a coffee from Starbucks. When they each walked into the office and saw they had a Starbucks coffee waiting for them, they had that same thankful, elated expression which I have on the days I receive coffee and it made my day to see that I too could give that feeling to someone.  

Today, make it a new beginning at your office, no matter what the circumstance is; don't hesitate to be friendly. Even if you're the new employee or maybe the one who's never had much to say, don't hesitate to smile and say hello. Also, bring them coffee; I assure you that nice simple gesture will make them overjoyed, and they will pay it forward by bringing you a little surprise in the future!♥

"No-one has become poor by giving." - Anne Frank

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Day 69 - Start a recycling program at your building, school, or home.

I personally have always encouraged others to ‘GO GREEN’; there are so many reasons why we should recycle, not to mention, society (for the most part) makes it so easy to do so in today's era, that there really shouldn't be a motive for why you don't recycle. In addition, recycling also has numerous environmental benefits such as it saves energy, conserves natural resources, saves wildlife & animals from becoming extinct, limits pollution, & supports several sectors of the economy to name a few.

The biggest concern for me is deforestation…

Did you know that 95% of forest areas in the US alone have been cut down, & over 50% worldwide? This is only going to get worse as regions of the world become more commercialized.

Forests cover 30% of the land area on our planet and they produce vital oxygen & provide homes for people & wildlife. Many of the world's most threatened & endangered animals live in forests. With the decrease in forest areas, wildlife that previously lived there have nowhere else to go & die as a result. Can you imagine being run out of your own home? It would be devastating & animals don't deserve it either! The National Geographic reports that rain forests could completely vanish in a 100 years at the current rate of deforestation; here are some astonishing facts:
  • 46-58 million square miles of forest are lost each year – that’s equivalent to 36 football fields EVERY MINUTE!
  • Around 17% of the Amazon forest has been lost in the last 50 years.
  • More than half of the world's timber & 72% of paper is consumed by 22% of the world's population.
  • Over 30 million trees are cut down every single day in the world.
  •  Over 5,000 products are made from trees.
  •  In the time it takes to read this article, an area of Brazil’s rain forest larger than 200 football fields will have been destroyed.
  •  It takes 200 years to grow a forest tree. It takes 20 minutes to cut it down!
Now that I have your attention, it’s easier than you think to start a recycling program in your office or school; to be honest I was a little concerned that this would be one of the more difficult deed’s to do. When I searched under Google “how to start a recycling program” I got so many results & most were easily attainable.  There are 4 simple steps to take:

1)      Designate a room in your office where you can place recycling bins; I designated the copy room and put a bin for paper as well as plastic which is what we mostly consume here.

2)     Contact your County Recycling Coordinator; by law your County is required to provide the opportunity to recycle at least 4 out of the 8 following materials: newspaper, glass, aluminum cans, plastic bottles, steel cans, cardboard, office paper & yard trash. Your local Recycling Coordinator will be able to provide you with specifics on what materials are accepted in the county program as well as a service provider’s contact information.

3)     Plan a meeting for everyone in your building or office to announce the program, teach everyone what goes in which bin, encourage & praise participation & follow-up via memo & newsletters as often as possible. Consistency is key to any successful program.
  • Today, I had an management meeting with all of our staff including security  & housekeeping advising them that beginning today we are to implement a RECYCLE POLICY with no excuses (I handed out memos of what items are recyclable). To encourage the new strategy, we will be doing a survey at the end of each month and the employee who has done the most recycling will get a $25.00 gift card to the restaurant and also a tenant of ours, The Cheesecake Factory.

Take action today as well & start a recycling program at your office, school or even at home. Trust me it’s easy and rewarding; start today to make a better future for your children tomorrow; and if you don’t plan on having children, at least save the poor little animals in forests throughout the world!! Don't know where to begin? Below are some links that will give you more information on where to start...

"Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it." - Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Day 68 - Give a homeless person a clean blanket.

My goal this past weekend was to complete this deed and give a homeless person a clean blanket. To be honest, I've been holding back from completing this for a while, because quite frankly I didn't know where to begin and I also didn't want to approach a random person on the street not knowing if I would offend them or not.

 Of course the weekend passed by and I was not able to accomplish the deed but late Sunday evening I went to get a late-night snack and while pulling into the McDonald’s drive thru I noticed a homeless person sleeping on the cement sidewalk on the side of the street; I felt horrible when I saw them laying on the cold ground with nothing but the clothes on their backs and I knew it was an ideal opportunity to finally complete this particular deed.

I went to the nearest Walgreens and bought a fleece blanket along with a travel size pillow; all the while countless thoughts racing through my head "what if they are offended?", "what if they are aggressive?", "what if they are callous?”.  I couldn’t control my anxiety and my boyfriend definitely didn't have the answers to comfort me at that moment (I obviously would have never attempted to do this in the middle of the night with him not being with me).

When I arrived at the location, I got off the car and slowly approached the homeless person who I found out was a woman, she started moving and looked up at me. As I held out the items in my hand, in a subtle tone I stated to her that I saw her lying there and thought she would like a clean blanket and pillow so I went and bought some for her. With a baffled look on her face, in a hoarse but brittle voice she said “no”; as I insisted and went to lay them down on the floor she looked at me as if she knew I meant no harm and once again said “no, thank you”.  At that moment I could tell that she clearly wasn’t going to accept anything from me and I shouldn’t cross my boundaries so I took a deep breath and went back to my car.  
When I returned to my car I was overcome with emotions and the tears didn’t stop coming; not because she didn’t accept the items but because I was entirely heartbroken for her. Sure I had seen homeless people in the past but never one lying on the cold ground by a main highway. I tried to erase the image from my mind but for the rest of the night all I could think about was her, I couldn’t even eat my fries and tossed them out. I know that all homeless people are not helpless and most of them have done immoral things in their lives and that's why they ended up where they are, but no matter how much a person has sinned in their life; they deserve a warm bed to sleep in at night or at least a blanket and a pillow.

I will attempt to complete the deed again and today I also signed up with the Miami Rescue Mission to feed the homeless and help with anything that I can. I look forward to my orientation on Saturday, May 18th, 2013; I will update you as soon as I attend. Also, if any of you are in the Miami area, I urge you to look at the flyer below and help in anyway that you can with Operation Hope Tote, every little thing counts!

"Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.” - Mother Teresa

Monday, April 29, 2013

Day 67 - Ask your partner about what he wants to conquer next.

An important element to any relationship is to communicate, my boyfriend has been the first to always point that out in our relationship and because of him, I am learning on a daily basis to express how I feel, and I am grateful for his help.

If you're in a relationship with someone you should know what their plans are and how they fit into your key essentials that make a person. Not only will listening to them build a stronger foundation to your relationship but it will also help determine whether you want to be a part of that plan or not.

One of the things that most attracted me to my boyfriend is his radiance and passion, the way his eyes light up when he talks about something that he loves, and the way he fills with light. He’s accomplished so much for his age, and excels more and more throughout time, yet is so kindhearted and lovely with every single person that crosses his path. When he talks about his passions he always makes me feel a range of emotions, but mostly, all I usually feel is happy; because although it sounds cliché, his happiness is my happiness. His only downfall is that due to his enthusiasm for so much, he commits to too many things which will usually lead to a nerve-wracking halt.

When I asked him what he wanted to conquer next he considered the question for some time before answering; finally his response was to deepen his yoga practice. When we first started dating, some of his main goals were less complex since work wise he’s been accomplishing everything he’s written out to do, they included but not limited to; waking up earlier in the mornings, smiling more throughout the day, and beginning yoga.  He has since been doing yoga for several weeks and not only feels better but as a beginner has a lot of potential to thrive in his practice. To ‘support’ him, I purchased a month of yoga classes in the studio he attends so that we can do the classes together.

In conclusion, why should you ask your partner what they want to conquer next? Well, research shows that couples who are supportive of each other have a prosperous, healthy, lasting relationship; and being supportive means making your partner’s happiness and well-being a priority, in little and big ways. The reason you’re together in the first place should be that you're each other's biggest fans, so you should make sure to act like it. Today, ask your other half what they want to conquer next, and if they are trying to make a positive change, such as start a new hobby, or undertake a difficult challenge; be their biggest cheerleader. I’m far from perfect, but I am definitely willing and able to practice what I preach, you should to!(;