#MondayBlogs My 11 Positive Affirmations #MondayMotivation

I’ve recently experienced an important milestone in my life, my retirement, after 38 years a teacher. In the months leading up to my retirement, and beyond, I’ve had a lot of time, and desire, to think about my life so far, goals achieved, goals to be achieved, done lists, to do lists, etc.

I’ve also been listening to a lot of Ted Talks and reading motivational books, both of which I’ll be gradually reviewing and discussing in future blog posts.

There’s plenty of information on the Internet regarding affirmations. This post is about my daily affirmations and what they mean to me and do for me. I hope they’ll be useful for you, too.

Why do we need positive affirmations?

It’s simple, we need to counteract negativity, which is harmful and far too easy to get stuck in. If you want to know more about how negativity works and how to avoid it, listen to Alison Ledgerwood’s Ted Talk, which has been watched by almost nine million people on the Ted website and Youtube.

We need to promote optimistic thoughts and counteract the power of negativity with positive affirmations.

What are positive affirmations?

Well, in spite of being very simple, the process is complex, because you have to be convinced it’s worth investing in them, which is a personal and non-transferable procedure each one of us has to go through themselves. However I hope my affirmations will help you think about your own.

This Ted Talk by Marisa Peer was an eye opener for me about the power of positive affirmations. Here’s another one of her talks about affirmations.

My 11 Daily Affirmations

  1. I am enough
  2. I am complete
  3. I am safe
  4. I am ageless
  5. I am limitless
  6. I am loved
  7. I am loving
  8. I am loveable
  9. I am wise
  10. I am grateful
  11. I am a writer

These affirmations are like the tip of an iceberg. Each three words have a much deeper meaning and conjure up a complex and life-changing thought processes.

As an example, I’ll explain what each affirmation means to me, so when I say it, I’m encompassing a much wider meaning in just three words.

  1. I am enough. This is the first one, and in fact, I believe it’s the only one you need, literally it’s enough, because you are enough. Try saying this sentence changing the emphasis in each word: I am enough, you and just you, not anyone else. I AM enough, because you consciously accept your responsibility in the action. I am ENOUGH, you have the power to decide what you want to be and when it’s enough, so You. Are. Enough.
  2. I am complete. This one is complementary to the previous one, I am enough and I am complete as I am. I am the sum of my physical, emotional and intellectual being, my likes, loves, achievements, hopes, knowledge, every day of my life, all of it is part of me, I’m complete in myself, because I’m the sum of everyone I’ve loved and will love, of everything I’ve done and will do, etc. I am a whole person, as I am.
  3. I am safe. I cover my basic needs every day, I have a job, a roof over my head, food on my plate, clothes, etc. I need not fear I’ll lose that safety, because I will lose everything at the end of my life. We all know life is transitory, but we can’t live in constant fear of losing what we have. I choose to feel safe at this moment.
  4. I am ageless. Age is just a number, it only means what we want it to mean. I’m 60 and I can do the same things I did when I was 50. I’m aware that not everyone can say the same, there may be some things we can’t do now and could do ten years ago, but are those things solely due to age? I bet most of them aren’t directly age related. People die, become ill, lose a limb, have accidents, fall in love, make friends, go to the gym, etc. at every age, so what’s all the fuss about age? Let’s think about the positive aspects of the passing of years, embrace the stage of life you’re at. I’m now helping to bring up grandchildren instead of my own children, it’s not the same and neither am I, but my ability as a grandmother is linked to my age in a positive way, that means I’m wiser. I refuse to be defined by a number.
  5. I am limitless. I can do whatever I really want to do, that means that what I want, really want, has to be backed up by motivation, effort, hard work. I decide on my limits because I decide how much effort I’m going to put into any project, be it preparing a marathon, learning a language or writing a novel. I decide how much time, finance, and effort I am willing to devote to each project. I am limitless, because I choose my limit.
  6. I am loved. This is not only about romantic love, it’s about love in a wider sense, including fondness and friendship. Think about or make a list of people who love you, who value you in a wider sense, this includes family members, friends, colleagues, neighbours, and it can even include people you haven’t seen for a long time, or people you don’t know, such as your fans etc. We can be and are loved by people who are not standing beside us at this precise moment. Recognise and value all the people who have ever loved you.
  7. I am loving. I love, again in the wider sense of value, appreciate and care about, other people, because love is a two way street, in fact if you made a list, the vast majority of names will be the same in both lists.
  8. I am loveable. This refers to the future. I can be loved, because I am enough, I am loving, I am not an island. I am worthy and available to be loved, because I give love and I am open to love, so I will receive it, too.
  9. I am wise. We all have abilities and knowledge depending on our training, jobs, books read, travels, hobbies, life events, family, etc. I can’t make a pavlova, but I make a mean paella, I don’t know anything about surgical processes, but I could translate a novel from various languages into English. I don’t know everything, no one does, but I can do many things, and I know plenty of things, so I am wise. I will honour and acknowledge what I know and can do.
  10. I am grateful. Finally, we all have things we feel fortunate for, some we’ve worked for like a profession and others we were born with, such as green eyes. I am grateful, that means I don’t take anything or anyone for granted, I thank my children for phoning me, because they’re busy and make the time to do so. I thank the sun for shining because it makes me smile, by saying this affirmation you are thanking everyone and everything you are grateful for.
  11. I am a writer. I write every day, I write blog posts, poems, flash fiction, I’ve written five novels, articles on education, in Spanish and English, so I can safely say I’m a writer. I think about writing, I read about writing, I speak about writing, I read and review novels, I care about writing, I interact with other writers, I feel like a writer. I want to be known as a writer.

By writing down, repeating out loud and owning my personal affirmations, I’m recalling them, acknowledging them and summoning them and everything they mean to me every day.

This process takes some time, certainly more than the few minutes it takes to write them down, and yet those first minutes are vital, because every journey starts with the first step.

So, I urge you to read up about affirmations, make your list and think deeply about what every affirmation means to you, own them and be happy!

Happy Monday!

#SilentSunday #Sixwordstory #sixwordstories If Life Deals You Oranges, Enjoy!

 

Sometimes life deals us sour lemons, and others we’re lucky enough to get sweet oranges, so let’s enjoy those wonderful moments and allow ourselves to recharge our batteries and embrace happiness. Perhaps next weeks’ lemons will be sweet, too!

I hope you’re having a wonderful Sunday.

Thank you for being there 🙂

My camera picked up these beautiful early spring flowers yesterday, just for you… 

#Bloggers Bash Blog Post Competition 2017 #FlashFiction: Connections

This is my entry for the Annual Bloggers Bash Competition 2017.

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I’m including a 100-word Flash and a brief account of why being connected to other bloggers has made me a better writer.

Making Connections

‘You need to stop this nonsense.’

‘Which nonsense?’

‘They’re not real.’

‘You think I’m imagining people?’

‘You don’t know what they look like.’

‘I’ve seen pictures.’

‘How do you know it’s true?’

‘It isn’t all true. We share some fiction, but our feelings and opinions are real.’

‘They’ll steal your ideas.’

‘We don’t steal, we share.’

‘Why do you do it?’

‘Bloggers need to make connections.’

‘What kind of connections?’

‘Connections with the world.’

‘You can’t even touch them!’

 ‘I might be touching a few at the Bloggers Bash.’

‘If they’re real…’

 ‘Why don’t you join us and find out?’

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Blogging Lessons Learned

Lesson 1: Less is More.

One of the most important things I’ve learned since I started blogging is the power of Flash Fiction. I’ve taken part in many flash fiction challenges and blog hops during the three years I’ve been blogging, and reading and writing short fiction has helped me improve my style. There’s a link to an earlier post on this topic on the picture below.

Clean, sharp, concise and precise prose is valued by readers, who are no longer patient enough to read long and detailed accounts, which may be beautiful, but are often wordy.  

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Link to a post about how Flash Fiction has improved my writing

Lesson 2: Worldwide Connection is Essential

I personally know people who blog, write and read occasionally, others are knowledgeable in specific areas, but this interaction is so limited, compared to the whole world, that it covers a very small percentage of my needs.

I need to be connected to other international bloggers by sharing information about books and reading, writing, publishing, travelling, art, and anything else that crops up on their blogs, from cooking to medieval history, because when I’m connected, I feel like I’m growing.

As a blogger, I’m not alone as a reader, writer, thinker, blogger, teacher, or person. I can find out what other people know, think, have done, can see, or like. I can share what I know, think, do, see, or like, too.

I can do so much more with the help, opinions, advice, experience, knowledge, and motivation of other bloggers, and I’m part of something much bigger than I could ever be on my own.

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Lesson 3: Gratitude

Bloggers are part of a huge community, which needs to be nurtured in order to grow.

It’s vital to show appreciation and gratitude to other bloggers by liking, commenting and sharing their posts on social media.

Thank you all for being there, for reading, commenting, giving your opinions, sharing your thoughts, ideas and knowledge, answering my questions, and being connected with me.

Thank you for motivating me to be a better blogger and a better writer.

If I am a better writer in 2017 than I was when I started writing in 2014, it’s because of you.

As a plus, I never feel alone. There’s always someone to read and write to, and something to write about, which someone will read, like and comment on … I hope 🙂

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My #Gapp_Week 1st August @Gapp_Week

  • What am I GRATEFUL for?

I’m grateful for friendship, yet again. Last week I met up with some of my cousins, who I only see every few years (we live quite far, and although we’re in touch, we hadn’t actually seen each other for a few years). Last week I also met up with a very good friend whom I hadn’t seen in a few years, Juan Luis. I met him and his family when I was thirteen and he was twelve, and we’ve been like cousins ever since. His older brother was actually my very first real boyfriend, and we all know how one never forgets their first love, because it’s always young, and fresh and innocent and only lives in our idealised memories… A quick (he had to work) coffee by the beach in Santander with Juan Luis was a highlight of the week for me 🙂

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Another good friend, I’ve known Loli for over 30 years, who loves baking cakes brought me  a cake she’d made and showed me her brand new engagement ring!

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The second thing I’m grateful for is that today’s the 1st of August, and as every year we spend the month in a rented sea-front flat near where my daughter lives, in Fuengirola. It’s wonderful to be near m daughter and grandchildren as we live in different cities the rest of the year (about 200kms away, I do see her some weekends, but not as much as I’d like). I love my temporary beach flat. I don’t actually use the flat much, because I spend most of the day on the terrace looking out to the sea. Bliss.

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  • What have I ACHIEVED? (Things I’ve done for myself)

I’ve started my fourth novel and amazingly, this is true, I’ve written 20,000 words, and more or less plotted it out. It’s a contemporary romantic suspense and it’s set in Spain. I can’t say much more yet, but I’m very excited with my new project.

I wonder what you think of this cover? I’m thinking of using it.

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  • What are am I PROUD of? Things I’ve done for others.

I’ve written a review for a fabulous novel I read last week, I Let You Go

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I’ve tweeted and retweeted other authors and checked out as many blog posts as I could.

I took my grandson to Madrid to visit the Real Madrid Stadium. He’s a big fan, so it’s something he’ll always remember!

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  • What are my PLANS for next week?

I’d like to met up with one of my readers I’ve met on Facebook, and some old friends in Marbella, I see very rarely.

I hope to have lots of fun with my grandchildren and write some more of my new novel…

I’m also behind in my reading, so I need to catch up!

Hope you all have a wonderful week!

 

My #Gapp_Week 25th July @Gapp_Week

  • What are you GRATEFUL for? Beautiful yet simple things which make life wonderful.

I’m grateful for living in this wonderful planet with such spectacular wildlife. I’ve spent a week in the north of Spain, in a beautiful part of the country. There are beautiful beaches, wildlife parks, reservoirs, mountains…

The sound of the waves breaking at the sea-shore, water rippling in the reservoir, the colours of the plants, flowers, trees and grass, and the amazing animals I was able to see were such a beautiful sight. I feel privileged to live on this planet.

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I’m grateful for meeting up with my cousins and aunt whom I hadn’t seen for a few years. I’m grateful for their friendship and affection, even if we only spent an afternoon having a long overdue chat and a coffee.

Fascinating how close we feel to people we share genes with, even though our lives are very diverse, and we only see each other very rarely, in my case because we’ve always lived in different parts of the world.

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I’m also grateful for the wonderful writers who write fabulous novels which entertain me, move me, and inspire me. Thank you for making my life more enjoyable.

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Claire Mackintosh for ‘I Let You Go‘ a fabulous novel I’ve just finished.

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Jennifer Theriot for Out of the Box Regifted, which I’m currently reading and loving.

 

  • What have you ACHIEVED? Things that you’ve done for yourself .

I’m not sure yet, time will tell, but I think an idea for a new novel has been sown. I’ll have to wait and see if anything comes of it, so I can’t say much now, except that it’s a contemporary suspense with some romance. Inspiration is quite an Achievement! (I hope it lasts)

  • What are you PROUD of? Things you’ve done for others.

I’m Proud of helping my mother who wasn’t feeling too well. It wasn’t much in relation to what she deserves, but it was all I could do, given the circumstances, which are too complex and personal to share.

  • What are your PLANS for next week? Doable and simple, realistic steps towards your goals.

I’d like to write down some scenes and character sketches for the new novel I’ve been ‘seeing’. Those who know my writing process know I ‘see’ my novel in scenes before I start writing and jotting down ideas and the novel starts taking shape.

I’d also like to keep in touch with my cousins, even if it’s only the occasional text message.

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I hope you all have a fabulous week!

My #Gapp_Week 18th July @Gapp_Week

G I’m GRATEFUL for a new 5-star review for Midsummer at Eyre Hall and lots of sales last week! It may not seen like much, but it made me very happy. I’m grateful that April took the time to read and review. It takes time to write a thoughtful review such as this one, although I’m grateful for even a few words!

I had a promotion on booksends, which led to my the three novels in The Eyre Hall Trilogy being in the top 100 historical novels on the same day. today, 16th July 2016, the three novels in The Eyre Hall Trilogy are in the top 100 bestseller list for Historical novels in the kindle store in Amazon US. Twelfth Night at Eyre Hall is 33, All Hallows at Eyre Hall is 74, and Midsummer at Eyre Hall is 85. It was short-lived, but great while it lasted.

I’m also grateful for my grandchildren’s visit,

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I’m grateful for meeting up with my best friends and their husbands, yesterday evening (which is why this post is very late!).

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I’m grateful for my colleagues’ evening visit, last Tuesday.

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A for what I’ve ACHIEVED? I’ve managed to sort out my emails, redecorate my front garden, and plan some new features for my blog, more about that soon.

P is for what I’m PROUD of. I’m proud of my colleague, Jose, who passed his teacher exams for a permanent post with flying colours, although that doesn’t guarantee he’ll get the post, at least he’ll have a temporary job next year.

I’m proud of my beautiful daughter who has two wonderful children, and another to be born next month. She had her hair done for a wedding on Saturday and I bought her the lovely new dress she’s wearing. I love buying little presents for friends and family.

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P is for my PLANS. These great books arrived from Amazon this week, which I plan to read asap! I’ve already read and reviewed The Mistake I Made, and I’ve started I Let You Go.

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I’ve also planned to visit my mother, who lives about 1,000 kilometers away. It’s right up in the north of Spain, and I live in the south. More about that next week.

I still have to finish proofreading Midsummer at Eyre Hall for print…

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How was your week?

 

My #GAPP_Week 4th July 2016

My #Gapp_Week 4th July

Gratitude: I’m Grateful for the summer holidays, for the lovely weather, for being able to rest and do my own thing (which is reading, writing, blogging and playing with my grandchildren) for six weeks!

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Achievement: I’m really pleased that I was able to wrap up everything at work. My work desk had been a mess all month due to end of term exams, evaluations, and final paperwork, but I managed to get it all sorted out.

Final staff meeting. The final report was typed up shortly after!

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I’m Proud of helping my colleague prepare his exam for a permanent teaching post. He has a temporary post at my school. I only met him five months ago, and he’s a hard-working and enthusiastic teacher who deserves to pass, but he needed a little help with some of the theory and encouragement for the exam.

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I also helped another colleague correct exams, because she was very busy with personal matters. She’s also one of my best friends, and you may think that doesn’t count, but it does. Friendship has to be nurtured, and friends shouldn’t be taken for granted.

Here are my two colleagues in another staff meeting. We were actually working, but we have so much fun!

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I’ve also posted some reviews on amazon for authors I don’t personally know or interact with. We all know how important reviews are for both readers and authors.

I looked after my grandson last Monday, while his parents were working. I don’t help them as often as I’d like to because I’m working full-time, so I’m pleased to help out when I’m on holiday. I’m not sure I’ve put this in the right slot, because really it’s a pleasure to look after Alex. I’m grateful for the games we play and the laughter we share.

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        Painting in the patio!

PLANS: My plans for next week are to finish proof-reading the print copy of my third novel…

Lucy Editing

Write some overdue reviews…

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Tidy up my study at home, which is a terrible mess!

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What about you?

Join in, pingback and read other GAPP_Weeks.

Or just read and comment, if you prefer 🙂

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RULES (short version, longer version here):

Few rules. Life has enough of them!

1- Tell us about your GAPP_Week.

  • What are you GRATEFUL for? Beautiful yet simple things which make life wonderful.
  • What have you ACHIEVED? Things that you’ve done for yourself .
  • What are you PROUD of? Things you’ve done for others.
  • What are your PLANS for next week? Doable and simple, realistic steps towards your goals.

2- Pingback to Lucy’s GAPP_Week weekly post on my blog.

3- Add #GAPP_Week to your post title.

If you like, you can:

  • Write four sentences, 400 words, or 4,000 words!
  • Add pictures.
  • Join in every week, or whenever you like.
  • Write your post on Monday, or any other day of the week.
  • Check out other posts.
  • Add the logo to your post or to your page (when it’s available. I’m working on that!)
  • Retweet as much as you like!

Happy #GAPP_Week!

I do like Mondays! #Gapp_Week @Gapp_Week

Modern blogging started in the last decade of the 20th century. It evolved from an online diary, where people shared their thoughts, reflection and lives publicly on the Internet through the use of Blogs, derived as we all know from the terms web (World Wide Web) + log (as in diary).  Some blogs were focused on news, others on fashion, literature, the arts, education, or just bloggers’ own random thoughts.

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I haven’t actually done much of that type of blogging. I do have some personal posts, but I wouldn’t call them a diary because they’re not consistent in theme or regular in their publication. They simply crop up now and again, and they’re closely related to my writer’s life, not my personal or private life.

Well, I’ve decided that’s going to change. I’m going to give real blogging, as in diary blogging, a go, at least until December, and probably longer, I hope…

The idea behind this (very) personal blogging initiative is that I believe I (and we) can improve our lives through consciously and publicly striving for a better quality of life for ourselves and those we interact with.

I’ll be channelling my random thoughts into four basic pillars and I hope you’ll join me:

1. The first pillar is Gratitude. The benefits of gratitude have been widely discussed by people who are much more qualified than me on this topic. If you’re not convinced, you can type ‘the benefits of gratitude’ and you’ll find plenty of pages. One of my favourite is the great Deepak Chopra: A two and a half-minute explanation. ‘We are all made of stardust’. I love it. If you want to read more about his theories here are his books. Here’s his amazon author page    

Gratitude Chopra

The first question I’m going to answer is: What am I GRATEFUL for?

Things that made me smile, laugh, feel good. It could be a phone call from a friend, a hug from my son/grandson, a beautiful sunset….

2. The second pillar is Achievement. Each week I need to feel I’ve progressed at least a little, because I’m nearer to accomplishing my goals. I need to identify the steps I’ve taken and the things I’m proud of having achieved. I need to feel I’m moving on, progressing, getting better. I need to believe in myself and encourage myself by pointing out my achievements.

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Let’s think about what we’ve ACHIEVED? Things that you’ve done for yourself that you’re happy about. Perhaps you wrote 1,000 words of your novel, learnt something new, finished reading a book, ran a mile!

3. The third pillar is Pride in doing things for others. Paying it Forward or Random Acts of Kindness.

Our interaction with world shouldn’t be selfish. We need to help others creating a pay it forward chain. The third pillar is Pride in helping others. What are you PROUD of? Things you’ve done for others. Perhaps you’ve listened to a friend who needed to chat?, written a review for an indie author’s book you enjoyed, helped a student with their homework, held someone’s hand when they were ill, helped someone who was lost or couldn’t speak your language very well?

Make sure you do random things for people who are not necessarily your family and friends, but of course kindness to them is also included!

We can all make the world a better place if we each try. The ripple effect starts with one person.

Pay it forward

Planning ahead in small steps. Instead of ‘Find a Job’, which is a long-term goal, think of smaller, but vital things you can do to get there such as, update my CV, or search online for places to send my CV, or look for a training course to do while I find a new job…

Goals

What are your PLANS for next week? What would you like to achieve for yourself and do for others. Thinking about this can help you write next weeks’ Achieved and Proud. Every large goal is achieved by a series of smaller steps. Think  of doable, realistic steps towards your goals.

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How is this going to become a reality? We need something tangible. Something we can look back on and think about at a later date, so we need to write it down.

My Gapp_Week Jar

I saw this idea in January. Everyone writes New Year’s Resolutions, but what about being grateful every day for a year and reading all your gratitude notes on 31st of December.

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I thought about this a lot, and while it’s a good idea, I wanted to make it into something that would help me keep my life in a more general perspective. I’ve come up with a similar idea. Below is my jar with my first Gapp_Week post-it, neatly folded inside. I plan to add one each week and open it to read them whenever I need reminding that life has lots of wonderful things we sometimes forget about.

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If this doesn’t work for you, that’s fine. Yo can use a diary or notebook to jot down your GAPP_Week pillars, or simply use twitter, or your blog. Whatever works for you. You might like to show us a picture of what you’ll be using to keep track, a jar or a notebook.

Why Mondays?

Well, let’s face it, Monday isn’t the most popular day of the week! It’s a good day to get some good vibrations going. Reminding ourselves of the positive things we’ve done the previous week and planning ahead for the following week could help increase our motivation. It might even be a wise idea to plan or write it on Sunday evening and post on Monday…

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I think it will help me be happy and focus on what I want and do what I need to do in order to be a better and happier person. It’s a big aim, but I’ll be taking it in small steps.

To sum up. I want us (you and me) to concentrate on four simple, but vital aspects of our lives every week to help us on our way to a better and happier life.

Do you want to join in?

RULES (short version, longer explanation above):

Few rules. Life has enough of them!

1- Tell us about your GAPP_Week.

  • What are you GRATEFUL for? Beautiful yet simple things which make life wonderful.
  • What have you ACHIEVED? Things that you’ve done for yourself .
  • What are you PROUD of? Things you’ve done for others.
  • What are your PLANS for next week? Doable and simple, realistic steps towards your goals.

2- Pingback to Lucy’s GAPP_Week weekly post on my blog.

3- Add #GAPP_Week to your post title.

If you like, you can:

  • Write four sentences, 400 words, or 4,000 words!
  • Add pictures.
  • Join in every week, or whenever you like.
  • Write your post on Monday, or any other day of the week.
  • Check out other posts.
  • Add the logo to your post or to your page (when it’s available. I’m working on that!)
  • Retweet as much as you like!

I’ll be including my #GAPP_Week for 4th July in the following post.

What do you think of this idea? Any suggestions?

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Post 100: Generosity, Gratitude and Rosie’s Book Review Team

This is my 100th post on my blog, and I’d like to make it special, especially because my readers are special, and I also feel special and honoured to be able to write this post with all of you in mind.

A short time ago, I discovered a Rosie Amber’s Blog through a comment she made on Noelle Granger’s Blog, and I was very impressed.

Have a look because it includes book reviews, guest authors, resources for writers, and her amazing ‘Doing Good Deeds’ personal initiative, which is in its second year.

I asked to join her book review team  and am thrilled to be part of this wonderful group of readers, some of who are also writers, who generously (in their own time with no material reward) and gratefully (because they love reading) read and review books.

I feel privileged to be part of this generous and grateful group of bloggers and reviewers, and am pleased to include my first review, as part of this group, in my next post.

Generosity and Gratitude are two wonderful words which I don’t want to glide over, as if they were simple concepts, because, on the contrary, they are very complex and essential aspects to making this world a better place.

Those of you who read my blog know that I’m an enthusiast of ‘playing it forward’, and generosity is the simplest way to do this. Giving someone your time, which is something we will never recover, we are being immensely generous. Listening to someone as well as hearing what they say, reviewing a book thoughtfully, as well as reading it, commenting on a post, as well as skimming through it, speaking to someone, as well as chatting, helping someone, instead of ignoring them, asking, instead of walking by, advising someone instead of watching them act thoughtlessly, are all generous acts we do every day, and may not even realize how valuable they are.

Make no mistake: without generosity we would be an indifferent and uncaring society.

On the other hand, the most beautiful word in the dictionary has to be ‘gratitude’. According to Margaret Mazzantini, Italian writer and actress, in her novel, Don’t Move ( Non ti muovere),  the most beautiful word is ‘grazie’ or ‘thank you’. By using this word, we accept and acknowledge our need of others. Gratitude is always directed to another person who has helped us or given us something we value, and we therefore show our appreciation.

Make no mistake: without gratitude, we would be a solitary and selfish society.

I’d like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to all my readers and to all the blogs I follow. I may not always have enough time to comment and drop by, especially during my present (waning) holiday period, but I love reading your posts, full of advice, information, reflections, poems, flash fiction, short stories, photographs, travels, and personal anecdotes, etc.

It has taken me about 10 months to write 100 posts, although I started at a slow pace, and have been writing more consistently in the last four months. At this rate, I should be celebrating my 200th post in the New Year 2015! Let’s see!

In the meantime, please keep generously reading my posts and writing your own, which I will be reading expectantly, and gratefully, as often as I can. 🙂