Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Let Life Bloom: Easy Ways to Be Positive Every Day

Have you ever wanted to be more positive?  Of course you have!

I am not talking about those imaginary people who wake up every morning with perfect hair, who sing at the sun and allow birds to fly in and chirp a happy morning tune to begin each day.  Those people only exist in fairy tales!

But we do all have our own "emotional baseline" -- some people tend to be generally happier and more positive than others.  The ups and downs may be affected by situations around us, or even those of our own choosing.  Even though it's not possible -- or healthy -- to be 100% positive during every waking second of our lives, there are ways that we can each manage those emotional baselines in order to become happier and more productive.

Instead of waking up with those chirping birds, try to avoid things that tweet -- including social media -- in that first hour or two of your day.  As an alternative, strive instead for quieter and less distracting ways to wake up in the mornings.  Eat a healthy breakfast, meditate, and get ready for your day on your own terms.  Immediately jumping on your phone, especially diving into social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter -- as much fun as they may be -- can really "harsh your mellow" and put you in a more distracted, more negative frame of mind, even before you've gotten out of bed!  Tend to your own body's needs before picking up that smart phone.

Keeping your work and living spaces free of clutter can also help to keep your mindset positive.  I don't know about the rest of the world, but I can get downright panicky when I lose something.  Life is so much easier when my stuff is organized.  However, I am not always the most organized human being -- in fact, I'm still working on that!  I probably always will be.  But I do know that cutting my clutter has helped me to discover what is most important in my life, and it's also enabled me to find it a little easier.  When you minimize, you can prioritize, which can in turn make the pacing of your life slower, easier, happier.

Spending time around children and animals can help too.  See the world through the lens of someone a bit simpler than you.  Kids are naturally imaginative and intuitive, without all of the complications that adults sometimes like to throw into things.  Animals, too.  There is nothing like going on an adventure with your favorite kid, or taking your dog for a walk -- watch how they notice and enjoy all of the little things that we tend to miss!  If you don't have either of these in your life, borrow some from a friend.

Remember to take notice of those little things in life.  Our lives are made up of small moments, and there's lots to love in each one.  Take care of yourself, take care of others, and let others care for you as well!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Spotlight on Delyric Oracle, Recipient of Our Humanitarian Award

We are so proud to bestow the very first Sage Institute Humanitarian Award to Delyric Oracle!  This amazing woman from New York plays so many different roles in life, and gives 100% to each of them: she's a talented hip hop artist, owner of her own label, an accomplished author, and the champion of many causes which she holds dear.

Ms. de Scheel is the owner of her own label, Delyric Entertainment, and as a musical artist herself, enables others' voices to be heard as well, ensuring that the artists she works with are treated fairly and with respect for their craft.  But artistic expressions aren't the only thing this young woman is passionate about.  Making the world a better place is not only a driving force in Delyric's music, but also in the way that she lives her life, each and every day.  Delyric Entertainment regularly holds concerts to benefit the homeless; additionally, Ms. de Scheel works with organizations such as the Arizona Womens' Partnership, an all-volunteer non-profit organization which is dedicated to promoting womens' groups through publicity and grants.

Not only is Alexandra de Scheel an artist of remarkable talent, but a person of great compassion and action as well!  ConsultTheSage.Com is thrilled to name Delyric Oracle as the recipient of the Sage Institute Humanitarian Award.  Thank you, Delyric Oracle, for everything that you do!

You can also find Delyric Oracle on Instagram and Facebook -- check her out, she's amazing. :)

Monday, February 22, 2016

How to Save Your Marriage

As individuals, we really should learn to be happy with ourselves.  But we’re human; we’re wired to want and need companionship.  When we enter into a good relationship, the world can be a brighter and more beautiful place.  But when we’re part of a good relationship that sours over time, things can go dark and ugly pretty quickly.  Any relationship may begin happily and with the best of intentions, but as things go along, misunderstandings may arise due to any number of factors – ego, personal issues, or external situations that take their toll on the relationship.  When things come to a breaking point, one or both parties in a couple may decide that the relationship has run its course.

Divorce or separation can affect both the social and personal aspects of each person involved. It may be surprising to know that even when problems do come up, the marriage does not need to end. Most issues can be addressed and managed with some hard work and dedication. I have coached and counseled many people with relationship problems, and here are five of my favorite pieces of advice for couples with fractured relationships…

1. Understand and agree the problems exist. We’re not talking about giving or receiving blame and fault at this stage of the game; let’s just focus on the idea that there are problems, and things need to change.  Too many people will live in denial all the way up until the last possible second – and by then, it's often too late. Be honest with yourself and your partner. Try to identify what the issues are in your relationship so that you can make an effort to improve them. Denial is not your friend.  Instead of retreating, practice acceptance.  With acceptance comes the ability to prepare for the challenges you'll be facing.

2.  Communicate without fear or judgement.  Author George R.R. Martin is quoted as saying “The unseen enemy is always the most fearsome." When it comes to marriages good or bad, this concept is always true. Whether there are known and concrete problems, or things just "seem off” in your relationship, there is no better solution then to start a dialogue. Give your spouse many chances to open up and try to get his or her perspective.  Even if your partner is unwilling to discuss problems with you, persevere. However, know that sooner or later they will need to start opening up if they wish to save the marriage too. In the meantime, watch and listen carefully for cues and clues.  And don't forget to be transparent in your own feelings.

3. Never underestimate the importance of passion. Problem-solving should be your biggest priority, but reigniting that flame of passion that you once shared is also one of the most important parts in salvaging a damaged relationship. This does not mean that you need to force yourself to have lots of insincere sex or to fake orgasms. What it does mean, though, is that you need to reconnect in fundamental ways. Remember what attracted you most to your partner when your relationship was young. Encourage your partner to share what attracted them to you as well.  We may have a few extra gray hairs on our heads and a few more pounds beneath our belts, but essentially, you are still that lovable "you" that once took their breath away. Strive to relive those moments and feelings.

4. Seek help. Marriage counselors, coaches and therapists are all fabulous resources in the quest for saving a marriage that is mostly good. There is nothing wrong with seeking help and learning the tools that you need in order to mend something that needs some reinforcement.  Getting help is a sign of strength, never of weakness.

5. The most important tip that I can give you is to have patience. You did not get into this mess overnight, and you won't get out of it overnight either. Be consistent as well as persistent. If you love your spouse, and you feel that your marriage is worth saving, work together in order to make that slow and steady effort.  Give it time.

My bonus tip for you is that while it only takes one person to want to end a relationship, it takes both people to want to save it. At the end of the day, it truly doesn't matter whose fault it is that things aren't perfect, who did what, or why it happened.  Both people need to be on board with repairing the relationship, and both people have work to do in order to make that happen. There will be times when walking away is the only option; but until or unless your sure that it is, it's not too late to try turning the tide.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Happiness in Communing with Nature

Our fast-paced world can really burn us out quickly.  With technology enabling us to communicate faster and easier than ever before, "alone time" is quickly becoming a concept of the past.  It can be wonderful to feel connected, but it can also be daunting and draining as well.  How can we get back to basics and quiet the multitudes of voices that surround us?

The answer may be simpler than you think.  Try communing with nature!

Immersing yourself in nature doesn't need to be an elaborately planned scenario.  Try taking a walk.  Even in an urban area, you're going to have opportunities to see animals and plants -- even if it's just squirrels in your local park, or the shade of a tree planted by the sidewalk of a busy road.  Find a place to sit and breathe the air.  Observe the weather -- is it sunny out?  What time of day is it?  Perhaps you can enjoy the clouds during the daytime, or try to see stars at night.

If that's too difficult, or your access to nature is limited, try simply gazing out your window at the sky.  Alternatively, you can bring natural elements inside by planting flowers, herbs, or other small plants indoors. 

Whatever way you decide to commune with nature, know that it will rejuvenate your mind and spirit when you're able to let go and focus on the world around you.  Our planet is filled with beautiful things, so take the time to enjoy!

Friday, January 1, 2016

Read for Your Happiness!

There's a whole world in each and every book!  To me, reading is like meditation.  It can quiet the mind, activate the imagination, reduce stress, and force your focus elsewhere.  Reading is such a wonderful way to fill your head and relax your body all at the same time.

You needn't choose to read anything lofty, or super cerebral -- it's nice if you like that, and by all means choose it if you want to -- but even something easy and light can provide the benefits of reading.  Grab your tablet, your dusty copy of War and Peace, or even the fun, short fashion magazine that brings a smile on your face and inspiration to your heart.

No matter what you choose to read, reading leads to learning -- which reads a richer and fuller life!

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