Tuesday, February 21, 2012

What's Your Take?

It is a strange transition to be with someone else.  When you are on your own, you have so much time to yourself.  You are like your own therapist; You start to understand yourself.  Being with someone else on a daily have to see yourself as perceived by someone else and make a lot of adjustments.
Margo - quoted in Quirklyalone

Off-and-on, I've been reading Quirkyalone by Sasha Cagen.  I like to read about 4 books at once so the fact that I've read a little here and there of the book is typical of me.

One quote that sticks out in my mind is the quote above from Margo, identified as "quirkytogether."

What I like about the quote is that it balances the advantages and disadvantages of being single or in a relationship.  Similar to Margo, being single allows me ample time for reflection and for doing "my own thing" while being in a relationship puts my communication skills to the test : ) and offers me more insight into myself.

What's your take on the quote above?  Do you agree or disagree with it?

Image Credit:  Tcola,

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The After Glow

Hope you all enjoyed Valentine's!  Mine was actually a bit quieter than expected but all-in-all it went well. 

I stayed inside for the day (had the day off from work), took my time eating meals and did some cleaning.  I had the chance to use some delicious-smelling lemon creme lotion that my sis gave me which made me feel special.

I hoped to watch the DVD Up in the Air last night but that didn't quite work out.

A thought that did occur to me on Valentine's is the idea of "romance":  What it means and how to add it into one's life in an authentic way.  I was thinking of some ideas on how a single woman could add romance to her life without it meaning that she has to go out and search for a partner or wear frou-frou house-slippers. 

I'm sure most of us have heard of couples who say that the romance/spark has gone from their relationship.  Therefore, being in a relationship doesn't guarantee romance which means that romance is independent of one's relationship status.  This then had me thinking of how a single woman could add romance to her life regardless of her relationship status.  For example, by slowing down, appreciating herself, wearing something that makes her feel special, making mealtime an "occasion."

What's your idea on romance?  Do you cringe or scoff at the word?  Do you believe that you can not be in a romantic relationship and still have romance in your life?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 14

How will you enjoy the day?

We've made it to Valentine's and the end of our 14 day challenge.  For today, you'll decide how you'll enjoy the day.  What do you enjoy doing and how can you add it to today?  Make it simple and fun for yourself.  If you want to go out dancing do that or dance in your home.  If you're longing for romance, create a romantic environment in your home or watch a romantic comedy.  Wish someone a "Happy Valentine's Day!" your simply greeting may cheer him/her up,  For additional ideas, you can also take a look at this post "6 Valentine's Day Tips for the Single Woman."

If you're feeling up for an bonus challenge, you can also take a look at the list you created on Day 1 and think of one action you can take to improve a relationship that earned a : ( rating. 

Remember that Valentine's Day is about love:  It's not just for couples.  Continue to love your wonderful, singular self and enjoy the holiday!

Monday, February 13, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 13

Mental Rehearsal

So Valentine's is almost here which means we're nearing the end of these challenges.  Today, imagine how you want to feel for Valentine's Day.  (If it helps to write your responses, then feel free to do so.) 

Do you want to feel love, appreciation, gratitude, connection? 

What are some thoughts that can support those feelings? 
Some possible thoughts could be -
I'm a loving and kind person
I value loving and supportive relationships with others
I'm learning to love myself more
I've decided to love myself more

(Whatever floats your boat and works for you.  I know at times some affirmations don't fit my personality or mood so feel free to adapt the affirmations above or create your own.)

What are some actions that can support those feelings?
Examples could be -
Eating healthier foods
Thinking kind thoughts about yourself
Thinking kind thoughts about others
Being patient with yourself
Accepting kindness from others
Appreciating your accomplishments - big & small

Actually, why wait another day to have those thoughts and feelings?  Why not start now?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 12

source: brandy shaul,
 Pamper yourself

Show yourself some self-love and pamper yourself today.  Whether you pamper yourself for the whole day or can only spare 10 minutes to read a favorite magazine, allow yourself some guilt-free relaxation.  If you're unable to pamper yourself today then schedule time this month for pampering.  You deserve it!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 11

"You only grow when you are alone." 
Paul Newman

The Benefits...

 The inspiration for today's challenge comes from Satisfied Staying Single Day. For today, list 8 (or more) benefits of being single.  

As with most things in life, there are pros and cons to an experience.  For Day 11, though we're focusing on the benefits of being and/or living single.  Enjoy the challenge and Happy Satisfied Staying Single Day!  Yeah, the name is kinda long but the intentions are good.  : ) 


Friday, February 10, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 10

Observe nature

Whether you're observing the outdoors from your window or while taking a walk.  For 5 minutes or more, take a break from your thoughts or your cell phone and connect with your natural environment.  Notice the different colors in your surroundings, the faces of people around you or even the smell of the air. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 9

source:  brandy shaul,

Compliment someone

Give a sincere compliment to someone.  After you give the compliment, check in to see how you feel.  Awkward?  Happy?  Relieved? 

*If this exercise makes you feel pressured to give someone a compliment, then find something beautiful in your surroundings (home/office/outdoors) that you can appreciate. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 8

It is and it isn't...

Words like "love" "friendship" "success" "wealth" are often used without us giving much thought to them.  I mean, my definition of success is probably different from my neighbors.  For today, we're gonna focus  This exercise will take between 5-10 minutes. 


Divide a piece of paper into 2 columns.  On the left write "Love Is" and on the right, write ""Love Isn't." Write whatever pops into your mind about love in the general sense.*  For you, love could be an unexpected smile from a stranger, a sunny day, being yourself with someone, a conversation with a close friend, a warm hug.  

Create your list and notice what does and does not feel loving to you.  What are you already doing that makes you feel loved?  What can you do to add more love to your day?  What causes you to feel unloved? 

*If you have the time,  you can categorize love based upon the 3 of the relationship categories from Day 1 or simply list what self-love is and isn't for you.  Feel free to update this list as needed.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 7

source:  clevercupcakes,

Of your 5 senses:  sight, taste, sound, touch, smell, choose one to focus on today.

For instance, if it's touch, be aware of how something feels.  The clothes that you wear.  A person's handshake.  The wind/sun on your face. 

Do I expect you to have an intense awareness of a sense for the whole day?  Actually, no, but when it occurs to you.  If you wish, you can write a reminder on your to-do list or write a post-it note of the sense that you want to focus on. 

Another option is to devote 5 minutes with a heightened awareness of one your senses.

Heads Up:  Day 12 will be for pampering.  If you can, schedule time on 2/12 to pamper yourself:  sleep in, soak in the tub, enjoy a favorite food, write in your journal, take a refreshing walk, day dream, give yourself a scalp massage.

Monday, February 6, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 6

Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is the richness of self.
May Sarton

Spend 5 minutes meditating or practicing deep breathing

The link below has a brief meditation to follow.

Also, today is that start of International Friendship Week.  What do you appreciate about your friends?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 5

Give yourself a scalp massage.

I'm a fan of scalp massages as a way to de-stress and clear the mind.  Below is an instructional video from Youtube.

source: youtube

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Sepia Vintage

While questing various fashion sites, in an effort to upgrade my fashion knowledge, I came across this website that features vintage photos of African Americans.  The expressions, settings, poses and clothing styles are pretty cool to see.

If you'd like to check out the site, here's the link to it.  Also, if you want to check out the dame who runs the site, here's her fashion blog, Budget Chic.


V-Day Challenge, Day 4

Notice something unique about your appearance.

This is "positive" unique not "negative" unique, OK?  Perhaps you have thick eyelashes or dimples that people notice.  It could be the birthmark on the back of your arm that makes you unique.  Now's the time to acknowledge and appreciate it.

Friday, February 3, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 3

A human being is a single being. Unique and unrepeatable.
Eileen Caddy

Compliment yourself. 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 2

Start the day by deciding how you want to feel.

Do you want to feel energized, clear-headed, laidback, calm, focused, playful?  True, these aren't strictly feelings byt hopefully you get the idea. 

Oh yeah, Happy Groundhog's Day to everyone!  As peculiar as that holiday is...

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

V-Day Challenge, Day 1

source: brandy shaul,

Welcome to the V-Day Challenge!  For Day 1, we'll start with listing our relationships in life.  (This is likely one of the more "involved" challenges.)

Starting with yourself, list your relationships in life.  Below are some ideas on the relationships to consider.  Categories:
The Online Community

Put a happy, neutral or sad face next to your relationship categories.
If a category doesn't apply, then leave it blank, e.g., you don't own any pets, or romantic relationships aren't a concern.
Choose 3 relationships that bring you the most joy. 

What do you appreciate about these relationships?  

Examples, could be your outgoing/introspective personality, the way your sister laughs, a neighbor who greets you in the mornings or a co-worker who keeps you up-to-date on global events.

That's it for Day 1!

*Remember, if you can't do this challenge right now, then schedule time to do it later in the day or on the weekend.