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Mantra Monday XXI: A "Not Mantra" Monday

Author: Joe Lizz Happy Monday Blue Ridge Nation! Today I’m going to do something a little different for Mantra Monday, a “not mantra” Mantra Monday, if you will — because I’m a rebel, and I believe in honoring where you are, and because my favorite part of writing a Mantra Monday blog is that it always comes from an experience or feeling in my own life the week prior. This past week I’ve found myself getting annoyed at my lack of commitment to the things I enjoy. Reading, writing, walking — I’ve done none of it. And then I realized that I should take my own advice and MAKE time for the things that I enjoy. By constantly working and caring for my family and those around me, and not caring for myself,...

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Mantra Monday XX: It's OK to Ask for Help

Author: Joe Lizz There is a beautiful power and strength in being vulnerable. It’s humbling, both for ourselves and those with whom we share that vulnerability. Personally, I am guilty of not seeking help when I need it. Sometimes it’s due to pride or ego and other times it’s because I don’t want to seem like a burden to those from whom I need to ask for help. Three decades of life have passed and I’m finally learning that not asking for help hurts me and creates ripples of delays, miscommunications, and frustration far beyond myself. 1. See help as a learning experience What is life without constant growth and learning? If we knew all there was to know and had experienced all there was to experience, we would be...

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Mantra Monday XV: Connect More By Disconnecting

Author: Joe Lizz We live in a beautiful time where technology makes it easier to connect with people all around the world through the internet than by dropping a letter in the mailbox or even picking up the phone to dial someone’s number. A couple of “double taps” on Instagram and several thumbs up on Facebook and you’re suddenly up-to-date on the lives of people who, for all we know, you never would have met if it weren’t for the digital world of profile photos and “Facebook wants to know how you feel” status updates.   I’m no stranger to the benefits social media can bring into my real life away from my phone, tablet, or computer.  I met one of...

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Mantra Monday XIV: Be Happy Just for the Sake of Happiness

Author: Joe Lizz There are a lot of moments in life that make us happy: falling in love, weddings, babies, cute puppies, delicious food when we are “hangry.” But what if we were happy for the sake of happiness — if we made a conscious choice to choose happiness even on the days when nothing seems to be going well?   Every day, we choose to allow energy into our life in one of two ways:   First, we actively choose to welcome or reject the energy.  We choose to end a friendship because it’s toxic or start a new relationship because it makes our soul happy. Second, in situations when we can’t choose to accept or reject energy, we can still choose how...

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Mantra Monday XIII: Lessons from Childhood are Lessons for Life

Author: Joe Lizz I am extraordinarily grateful for my mother. Growing up, my dad worked every shift he could, every day of the week he could, so that my mother could stay home and raise me and my siblings. She was, and still is, one of the most positive influences in my life. I can’t thank her enough for all that she sacrificed for me. When I grew up, we didn’t have cell phones or social media. We didn’t own a laptop, or even a desktop computer (go ahead and google that, I’ll wait — #throwback) until I was in middle school. We had to pick up the phone and call someone to talk to them or pick up a pen and paper...

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