Good morning! This week’s DESIGN YOUR LIFE participant, Liz of Sincerely, Liz, is also a new sponsor for MML. I’m excited to share her intentions and her amazing photography so that you all might get to know a bit more about her and her talents. As you will read, Liz has an incredibly kind heart. You can also follow her daily on her blog as well.
I’ll be taking her intention to give people the benefit of the doubt some serious thought in my own life. I can already think of a handful of situations where this is much needed. Enjoy!
DESIGN YOUR LIFE: Liz of Sincerely Liz
We all have bad times, right? Here’s my cure-all solution to getting rid of the darkness in your life: put some light in it. My light comes 100% from my faith in God, but I have a few things I practice regularly, in addition to my faith, to keep my chin up. One of the big things I have done in recent months is surround myself with positivity. This includes actions like unfollowing negative tweeters (tweeple? tweeps? twitter folks?), stop spending time with people that leave me feeling drained 100% of the time, give myself permission to let go of people/behaviors/habits that weigh me down. In addition, I started doing more positive things like sharing smiles with strangers, posting uplifting quotes on facebook, writing weekly Gratituesdays on my blog. It took me 26 years to realize that the banner in my 5th grade classroom really WAS right. “Attitude is everything.” I tell ya what, keep it positive and you can get through anything. 🙂
Use your talents to give back.
I truly believe God has given us all talents that we should use to bless others. Not only does it lift up and help the people around you, but giving to others is enjoyable! It’s all a big, happy cycle of blessings and I think it makes life a bit better.
Give the benefit of the doubt.
Think before you speak.
I have two questions I ask myself before I speak. Okay, realistically I ask myself these questions as often as I can remember. Which is not ALL the time. But, I really, really try. Question one: Is what you are about to say going to negatively impact anyone? If so, don’t speak. Question two: Are you simply observing out loud or is what you are about to say productive? Someone once told me that he didn’t speak much because he realized that almost everything he would say was simply an observation about life. “She said this,” “We went here,” etc. For someone who has a mouth that has gotten her in a lot of trouble in the past, this was an amazing concept. One that I adopted for my own life from that day on.
Judge yourself first.
I don’t know if it was the way I was raised, or the culture I grew up in, or simply my sinful nature, but I have had a lifelong struggle with judging others. I find that my mind is assuming things about other people based on the tiniest glimpses I see of their lives before I even have the opportunity to process what I’m seeing. I am continually coaching myself (in silence) to STOP assuming and judging others. The way that I do this is to always think “what if that were me? What if what the person was saying, doing, or behaving like… what if that were me? What could possibly justify what I was witnessing?” It’s a continual thing for me, but I genuinely strive to someday reach a place in my mind where judgments never, ever happen.