Monday, July 28, 2014

Do Life Big: 5 Steps to Increase Your Thinking

Happy Monday!

Hope your weekend was amazing. Mine was filled with celebrating the hub's birthday and spending time with family and friends! I am beyond blessed to have him in my life and I thank Jesus for allowing him to see another beautiful year on this earth. :)

I have told you all about how I sing and the desire to show you more from me has been increasing ever since I started pursuing a relationship with Christ. (Do you remember this post?) Well, I have been so preoccupied with other things that I haven't been focusing on what I vowed to do on this blog. I wanted to bring your more of me in that way. Can I tell you a little story? When I was little, about 5 or 6, I used to sing this song, "Think Big." And it has since always been a motto in my life. I have never been able to keep my thoughts or dreams in a box or down to earth. Everything I imagine is as if I am this 5 or 6 year old thinking and dreaming for the first time. Do you know how much liberty and life there is in BIG thinking? It allows you to imagine limitless, which is what Jesus wants us to believe. If He has no limits, than why is our thinking limited? Today, I am here to inspire you to think BIG. Here's 5 steps to increasing your thoughts. 

Photo: Spring 2013 campaign by Everly shot by Stephanie Williams.

Stop worrying. 
Focusing on the negative or the chance of failure will only continue to hold you back. Fear comes from the unknown. When we are in new territory, we are unsure of what to do or how to do things - it's okay. Just like your first day on a new job, you may feel nervous of the unknown, but that feeling will leave. Feelings always change, so accept your feelings as temporary. Once you become familiar in this new territory, you will feel empowered.

Avoid the "case of tomorrows". 
How many of you were going to start your new workout regimen tomorrow? Or begin that project you've been putting off, tomorrow? Well, tomorrow will come and go again and again if you allow it. Start today, right now. Procrastination is a huge detriment to unfulfilled dreams and purposes. Do not let it get you. If you make a mistake on day one, dust yourself off and keep going. Completely throwing in the towel and saying, I'll start tomorrow will just begin a domino effect. Start now.

Don't question it. 
God puts things in us that we are inevitably made to do. You've been feeling you need to accomplish something, or you want to build something independently - there is a reason its burning in you. Don't question that fire, go with it. Embrace it.

Ignore small minds. 
There will always be people who tear down your thoughts or ideas. Many of the greatest innovations came from those that persevered into the unknown to make things happen. Do you think no one ever tried to crush their thoughts, or their dreams? Expect that it will happen, and be prepared with positive thoughts to reinforce why you are doing what you are doing. It could be something as simple as "I love photography" to as complex as "I want to challenge myself to see if this is something I can accomplish."
                - Write them down and keep them with you for times when you need encouragement.
                - Speak them out loud to yourself to gain faith. Hearing it will help you believe your words.
                -Look in the mirror when possible. Sometimes you need to talk to yourself.

Challenge your mind. 
Think of the greatest thing you want to accomplish, and think even bigger. Have you ever heard the saying "Shoot for the moon, so you land on the stars?" Well, this is using a similar concept. If you are striving for above the top, you can make sure you land on top. Don't allow your thoughts to be limited by your environment. Sometimes we place ourselves in boxes and don't want to come out because it is too different than what those around us believe. They can't see your dreams, because they are YOUR dreams. Meant for you, created for your purpose. Remember that!

Have a great Monday!

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Friday, July 25, 2014

Freedom Friday + Free Printable!

Happy Friday!

When we are children we can't wait for the freedom to be an adult and operate our lives the way we want! When we become adults we search for financial freedom, freedoms in our careers, and freedom of judgment from our friends and families. Freedom is something we all desire. Some long to live in a country with freedom of speech, thoughts, and rights. 

Yet so many of us live in bondage. We are bound by our environment, bound by our jobs, bound by our families, and even bound to our own thoughts. Bondage is a true reality for so many and freedom is a hope, a dream, a parallel universe where everything works out, and every day is a good hair day! Freedom can seem so far for so many of us. 

In my life I experienced bondage like many and I saw it as well. I saw bondage to religion and religious standards and ways. I saw bondage of routine, same ol' same, everyday living for a God. After watching so many living for Christ that were not genuinely happy, I questioned it. I was bound by the idea that my own works/merits were what drove the love that God had for me. I was bound to the idea that if I ever made a mistake, I would be sent to hell, sins in hand, never to return. Bound by the idea that God was waiting for me to mess up, and when I did my world would be over. I would no longer be close to Him. I was bound to the pressure of pleasing people and going along with what people thought, instead of finding Jesus for myself. 

Oh, but He found me. He chose me. Right in the middle of my mess, he looked up on me and told me I was His. At that moment, I knew my life would never be the same. I did not understand how different my relationship would be with Him than it was before. I soon realized, I never had a true relationship with Him. Or not as deep as He would have wanted it to be. I had a relationship with religion. Each week I went to church was to please my parents and those in my church. Each time I prayed was because of a routine practice. I became so routine in my ways that I was knowing religion vs. knowing Jesus. 

What opened my eyes was when I started to truly read about how Jesus was so different than religion. How he walked and talked with those who were in sin. He truly came to give life and to open the eyes of the blind - spiritually, and naturally. The more I read, the more I started to think He was pretty cool ;)

What I have learned about Jesus is that He is love. He is true divine agape love. That's a deep love that never fails, never quits and covers a multitude of mistakes, failures, and mess-ups. I learned that He is always standing with arms wide open to pick me up when I fall, dust me off and tell me to keep my focus on Him. He knows the deepest parts of me and would never want me to think I had fallen so far that I couldn't call on Him. He wants me to call on Him in those moments - so He can show me how much He cares!

 I learned that He is abounding grace and is truth and can be nothing other than just that. I came to know that He is strength in my times of darkness or sorrow. He is joy in my life every day. He is an escape and refuge from this destructive world.

And He is Freedom. 
While religion was bondage; Jesus is always freedom. 
Choose life. Choose Joy. Choose Freedom. Choose to have a relationship with Christ.
I promise He won't let you down. 

Hope you have a great weekend! Enjoy the free printable!
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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Cliches Can Be Deep + Let Your Light Shine Thursday Link Up

Happy Thursday!
Hope this week is winding down beautifully for you all! 
It has been super hot and humid here, but I am not complaining! I am soaking in all the sunny rays I can get on my way to work each day because before I know it, Minnesota will be back to the tundra! ;)

Over the years there have been many cliches about Minnesota and its weather. I won't even bore you with any, but the other day I was thinking about cliches in general. Many of us are guilty of saying cliches to people when they are faced with certain situations, or even just out of habit of hearing them all the time. The funny thing is as life goes on for us, we began to learn more, experience more and gain a deeper understanding in a lot of things we never understood before. 

Cliches serve as this quick witted statement that pretty much sums up the problem or the resolution. 
Do you agree?

Think of all the cliches you may have heard growing up. 
How many of those stuck?
 Are you saying to your loved ones now? At what point did your understanding shift?
I decided to take a deeper dive into a few of these and try to attach them to a stronger foundation in Christ. 

Numero Uno: "Always look on the bright side."
Meaning: Be Optimistic; find the good in the bad. Look for the silver lining. I am a new optimist. I was always troubled with worries and was very much a pessimist, until Christ. I do not know how I lived my life so pessimistic for so long. Looking on the bright side of things is one of the biggest keys to getting through tough times and keeping joy in your life. 

Number Dos: "That which doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."
Meaning: If you survive a tough time, you will be stronger because of it.
Oh how cliches can be so annoyingly right! They can be annoying because everyone says it, but they carry a lot of truth in many of them. This is one that hits close to home. Many a struggles, but they have each in their own way made me so much stronger. They've given me wisdom, experience, and taught me patience and endurance. Through them I have discovered that true joy comes from within. When facing situations now, I understand those values must be focused on during the times to really see the beauty of the process. How much strength have you gained from 'fiery trials'?
(1 Peter 5:10; James 1:12; Romans 12:12; 1 Corinthians 10:13; Romans 5:3; 1 Peter 4:12)

Numero Tres: "An idle mind is the devil's playground."
Meaning: When your mind is idle, you may wonder into wrong thoughts which could lead to wrong doing. The mind is very powerful. I have seen kids say they got into mischief because they were literally not putting focus on anything, bored. Keeping focus is so important in our lives. Many times our mind can go wondering and can get us into really dark, deep, angry places with others. Maybe your hubs forgot to take out the trash (or is that just me? -_-); and you just start thinking and fuming and before you know it your mind has went completely left field and now you're upset about something that happened years ago...
 It takes a renewing of our minds each day to keep us to think on good things (Phillipians 4:8). Sometimes joy is stolen with ideas that started forming up there in that mind of yours! Joyce Meyers has a great series, called Battlefield of the Mind. Its funny and insightful. When you find yourself with no thoughts, fill it with good thoughts :)

Numero Cuatro: "Get back up on the horse."
Meaning: Try again after you have fallen. This goes hand and hand with "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again." I have heard this one more than a thousand times. But its so true. There's a reason so many of us say it or believe it. You can't give up, you must get up and get back on the horse. (Galatians 6:9 - one of my favorites) In due time, things will work out. 

Numero Cinco: "Let bygones be bygones."
Meaning: Do not dwell on things; let it go. Forget things that are not important. Oh man, Christ is the ultimate supporter of this. Firstly, that He loves us so deep that it covers any and all faults, past, present, and future. It literally lets bygones, be bygones. This is a constant reminder of forgiveness and how important it is in all aspects of your life. And a huge key about forgiveness, is forgiving yourself! That is one that I have truly learned first hand in the last year. I get down on myself, I make things harder on me, and God constantly tells me that He has let it go - but I must let it go, too. That is really hard for many of us to do in today's society where we battle this idea of perfection. Also very important about letting go of past hurts, failures, situations, relationships. Let it be and leave it where it belongs, in the past!
(Matthew 6:14; Phillipians 4:6-7; Ephesians 4:31)

What are some of your favorite cliches?
Which ones are you completely over?
Are there any you feel are not true? Why?

Today is
Let Your Light Shine Thursdays!
Thanks so much for all of you that linked up last week!
Me and Aisha loved seeing all of your posts!

Our favorites from last week's link-up were from Sarah @ Princess Audu!

She has great posts about fashion and great style! Make sure to check her out :)

 from Bogi @ Red Reticule!
She has AWESOME perspectives on fashion and shows off her style with every post! Check her out!

Thanks again for all of you who participated! Now it's time to link up again :)

1. Link up your favorite post this week - It can be related to faith, fashion, food, family, or whatever else you would like to share that helped you shine your light from the week!

Don't worry if you don't have a blog to link up - just leave a comment with how you let your light shine this week!

2. Follow I'm Perfectly Human & True Soul & Spirit on Bloglovin, or any other social media outlet (FB, Twitter, Instagram, or GFC)

3. Link back by using the button above or your own link.

4. Visit other blogs and meet new blogger friends!

Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to feature and share with you all!

Let Your Light Shine Thursdays

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Paralyzed by Perfection

Happy Monday!

Hope the week is starting out great for you. 
For me it was a hassle getting over Sunday, but I accomplished getting to work this morning so that deserves a pat on the back. In fact, everyone pat yourself on the back if you have made it to your destination for the day. It took a lot of pushing to get you out of that bed this morning and on your way. Oh, and don't forget to thank our creator for the chance to see another beautiful day!

This past week I became extremely inspired about a project I have been working on since the beginning of this year. I cannot wait to share it with you all! Anywho, Yes, I became super inspired and enlightened on this project again. How many of you have ever taken a break from something you are working on, and when you pick it back up you have fresh new eyes to see things a bit more clearly? Well, that is exactly what happened to me. This project is something that I have been trying to make perfect before anyone can lay eyes on it, dotting my i's crossing my t's to ensure that everything goes off with a hitch. 

But does that ever work? 
I mean truly, how often do you plan for something and everything goes according to your plan? 
Almost never. 

At least not according to my plan, but always according to God's plan. (Proverbs 16:9) I recently experienced it with my wedding. Everything was planned at its proper time and those times went right out the window come D-Day. LOL Truth is, although the day came out beautiful and better than we could have imagined, our plans had little to do with the magic. 

So the other day, I was talking to Jesus. Literally driving and thinking, discussing the fact that sometimes we want things to be so perfect that it can paralyze us. I had put this project on hold because I became so involved in every minuscule detail that I was losing focus on the purpose for this project. God put this in my heart to do it and He told me that I needed to get back to the purpose and everything else will fall in line.  

It amazes me how our ideas of perfection can put us in a position where we never move because things are not as 'picture perfect' as we think they ought to be. I have seen very talented individuals sit on their talents because they are waiting for the perfect timing, or they want every little detail to be the best one out there when in reality our idea of perfection is not truly what makes something authentic and exciting for the ones we are trying to make it perfect for.

 How many of us know someone who can sing better than the winner on American Idol, or knows how to design and sew better than the Project Runway All-Stars?
 Or even someone that can cook an amazing meal comparable to a top-chef? 

They might not all want to relish and bask in the fruits of their talents, but for those that dream and want to and are doing nothing because they think they are not good enough and not perfect enough - you are doing nothing more than being a hindrance to yourself and your future.   

"As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace"
-1 Peter 4:10

I am not saying just go out there with absolutely nothing in order, but I am saying take a leap when things are not as picture perfect as you may have wanted them, with experience they will get better. Expect and accept shortfalls. That is how you learn. 
Embrace mistakes, that is where you grow.
 And trust the process and experience. 
It has been developed by an almighty God who has it already figured out. 

Start Where You Are
Use What You Have
Do What You Can
-Arthur Ashe

I hope this inspires you the way I have been inspired this week. Don't sit on your gifts, embrace them. Get out there and do something! 

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Friday, July 18, 2014

5 on Friday

Happy Friday!

I am so excited that the end of the week is here. 
It honestly has felt like it would never get here. Have you ever had a week like that?

Well, anywho - thought I would share some things with you today and I hope you don't mind as a few of them are rants. Yes, rants. I generally come on here and try to empower myself and others and then there are days like today, where I'm so over the week I had - that I cannot wait to get home, throw on PJs, and watch the latest episode of horrible reality TV, while pigging out to ice cream and watching baby grace babble. 

Its funny because I was literally talking to Jesus, basically complaining, and He's amazing because He allows me to get it out - but then to get over it! Now I've got to get it all out, and literally after I write this I will be sitting with my tub of ice cream completely over it.

Annoying things of the week:

ONE. People that like to hear themselves talk. 
I swear at work, some people literally just like to hear their own voices. There is someone I know that literally repeats the same things over and over and I'm convinced it is because they like their voice and want others to hear them. It will be nothing of substance, sometimes even useless facts that they believe everyone else wants to hear. Or you know those people that just have to make a comment on any and everything. They can never not say anything, they must be heard. How annoying.. 

TWO. People that don't plan things. 
Now that I'm a mommy and wife, its oober important that I put things on my calendar. Oh in the past I used to be a class A offender of this, but now I like to put things on my list ahead of time and know what's coming up that I need to be planning for. Also, needing a babysitter and all its imperative that I plan. When there is something spur of the moment it literally gives me a headache and annoys me - because I don't have that luxury anymore! For all of you single ladies that have mommy friends - please remember my rant
This can also apply to pop-up meetings that show up on your calendar 10 minutes before they start.. -_-

THREE. People that merge onto the highway going 20MPH. 
Angry Angry Gif animated GIF
I kid you not, some woman did that this morning. Literally pulled in front of me and almost caused a 12 car collision because she didn't want to go the speed  of current traffic. This is a huge pet peeve. I used to be really bad with road rage, but thank Jesus, He has taken the rage out of me otherwise it would have been lights out for that lady! I kid, I wouldn't have done anything but been in a bad mood - and I have no time for bad moods so I just let it go. But its still super annoying... 

FOUR. People who are all talk and no action. 
Annoying Music animated GIF
It annoys me when people complain about things and never do anything! Like I remember at my old job, people would literally moan and complain all day about how this process sucked, or that process didn't make sense - but none of them bothered to look into changing or improving it! Do something or stay quiet. Thank you.

FIVE. When you realize you forgot your lunch and are forced to eat cafeteria food.
Angry Annie animated GIF
This is the most annoying, when you have something super delicious that you forgot and are now forced to whatever they have in the cafe.. No, I do not want day old hamburger meat... (Our cafe is very questionable..) Either that or drive somewhere and spend money on food you don't want. 

All in all, TGIF is definitely in order. 
Enjoy your weekend!!

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