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Saturday, December 9, 2017

4 Steps to Stop Drifting


Are you drifting through life? Or do you live every day with purpose and intention? It’s so incredibly easy to find ourselves on the path of drifting. Getting off course doesn’t happen all at once. It’s little small steps, off of the path to our best life, that gets us in trouble. Missing one Sunday of a church, snoozing one morning, eating one day of bad food, smoking one cigarette, trying drugs one time, and taking just one step in the wrong direction can totally change the course of our lives. When we finally realize what is happening to us, we are miles away from where we want to be—with no map to get to where we want to be.

Have you ever had a day totally get away from you? So many times, while I’m getting ready for bed, I wonder, where did this day go? What did I do today that made a difference in my life and the lives of others? What did I accomplish? If I don’t know, then there’s a good chance I spent my whole day drifting. Now it’s totally different if I intend to spend the day resting, lounging in my pajamas while reading a book. Because I planned the rest day. It’s living unintentionally that causes me heartache. 

I don’t want to reach the end of my life one day and realize that I drifted my whole life and never accomplished my dreams. In order to prevent this from happening to me, I’ve realized that I have to be intentional about my life. The enemy would love for me to spend my days on social media, watching TV, or ignoring my heart’s desires. When I’m constantly distracted, then I can’t serve God the way that I want and need to. Most things are fine in moderation, we just have to be sure that we are moderating our time and attention. 

  1. If I want to reach my goals, then I have to be intentional about how I spend my days. Every day I have to live with purpose and avoid the busyness trap. Busyness is not the same as being productive. I could spend the whole day being busy and never really accomplish anything. The key is to schedule my days and make a list of at least three things that need to be completed that day, in order to move me closer to my dreams.
  2. The art of mastering self-discipline is crucial to accomplishing my dreams. In order to feel my absolute best, then I need to do the following things: get enough sleep, get up at the same time each morning, stop snoozing, eat healthy nutritious food, exercise, spend time with God, have a positive mental attitude, and focus on doing work that matters. Since writing feeds my soul, I need to spend time writing every single day. 
  3. Nurture the relationships that are important to me. When I start my day praying, reading my Bible, and meditating, then I develop a closer relationship with God. He eases my worries and helps me to establish my thoughts in Him. Spending time with my husband and children are also important. A few years ago, I realized that I could have all the success in the world, but if I destroyed my relationships with those most important to me in the process, then it wouldn’t truly be a successful, joyous life. So I am learning to establish a time to work as well as a time to play and enjoy my family. When I’m intentional about spending more time with my loved ones, then I find the time to make it happen. Also when I’m spending time with my loved ones, I put my phone down and enjoy the moment. 
  4. Get rid of the relationships, habits, and environmental factors that are self-destructing. Procrastination is one of the biggest factors that cause me stress. Waiting until the last minute is a recipe for disaster. So is spending excess time with people who bring us down. 


When we take the necessary steps toward our goals and living our best life, then we will be able to eliminate most of the traps that derail our journey. Every day we just need to be conscious of our life and how we are living. Doing this will help us to accomplish more, become healthier, and have better relationships. We only get this one life—let’s make it extraordinary. 

Love and blessings, 

Candida

Friday, December 8, 2017

Breaking the Cycle


Sometimes we forget that we have a choice. This is our life. While circumstances might try to derail us or even destroy us, at the end of the day no one can take away the way we chose to see our lives. Ultimately, with every thought and action, we declare whether or not we are a victim of our circumstances or an overcomer of them.

Perspective is a beautiful gift. Especially when we ask God to give us the right lens upon which to view our lives. For so long, I wasted precious time crying over something that I could not change. When I changed my thoughts about the situation, however, my situation changed. Every day is a new canvas for us to paint the picture we wish to see in the world. We can be consumed with the evil and heartaches of the world, or we can choose to see the joy and love. It’s all around us. Whatever we focus on will manifest in our lives. 

We don’t have to wait for great things to happen in our lives to be happy. Right now, we can choose to see our situation with different eyes and a new understanding. When I am struggling with something, I like to ask God to help me see the situation as it is—not how I have chosen to see it. Most often our brains automatically jump to the worst-case scenario. It takes practice for us to learn to examine our thoughts and discard the lies. Once we replace the lies with the truth, then we are able to see the bigger picture.

Journaling helps me to see things with a different perspective. Just getting our thoughts on paper will help us to see them truthfully. When they are just in our head, then the devil has a way of magnifying them. Usually, by the time I write my problem out in detail, my feelings about the situation has already changed.

Most of the things I worry about never actually happen anyway. It is just problems that I create in my mind. I have a special talent for turning one little thought into a tragedy within minutes. Especially if I feed the fear and worry in my mind. To stop the tragedy from occurring in my mind, I tell myself that I will allow myself to worry about the problem when it actually happens—and not before then. When I recognize what I am doing, then I am able to stop it. 

We can’t change the past nor the future with worry. It is a waste of energy. Sometimes just stopping my thought pattern also helps. When I notice the repetitive thoughts going crazy in my mind, then I can stop it by reminding myself that I am worrying. Then I occupy my mind with something else. Scriptures are very comforting. When I meditate on a promise from my Lord, then my troubles don’t seem as overwhelming. 

John 14:27 (KJV)
27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

Love and blessings, 

Candida

Monday, November 20, 2017

Why We Need To Reprogram Our Minds


Have you ever spent the day with someone who is negative? When we are around negativity constantly, then it has a way of sneaking into our minds as well. I once worked at a facility where the majority of my coworkers complained and were often in a bad mood. Every time I opened the door and walked inside I could feel my mood changing. Their negativity brought me down. Going to work made me feel bad. It was then and there that I decided to become the kind of person who lifts others up, instead of tearing them down. Needless to say, I didn’t stay there for long. 

Now I am cautious of who I allow into my life. I want to surround myself with positive, encouraging people. If we don’t have those types of people in our lives, then we can read encouraging books. Every day we need to do something to fill up our cups. We can’t drink from an empty cup. When we give away our time, our love, and our energy without replenishing it in some way, then we will find ourselves overwhelmed and drained. 

Limiting beliefs have a way of sneaking into our minds. If we are not careful then we will start believing that our lives have limitations. After my surgery, when the pain in my hand was hard to deal with, I listened to encouraging words and hummed hymns. Because I knew that I was in a vulnerable state, I listened to the same inspirational video about overcoming every day until I believed the message in my heart.

 When I start my day by praying and reading my Bible, then I am replacing my thoughts with God’s word. The world is filled with heartache and pain, but God’s word is filled with peace and love. It reminds me to not let my heart be troubled or afraid. God has grace for our every need. We have nothing to fear. 

One of the things that I have learned to do is to examine my thoughts. Then I decide whether or not the thought is the truth or a lie. While I might feel like no one loves me at times, it is not the truth. In an effort to counteract the lie, I might make a list of all the people I know that truly love me. This helps me to reprogram my mind with the truth. Sometimes we just need to remind ourselves of the good in our lives. The world will constantly give us a hard time. 

Gratitude is one of the best ways to change our lives immediately. When we pause and feel gratitude for all of our blessings each day, then it turns what we have into enough. God loves hearing from us. It pleases Him when we pause to thank Him for our gifts—especially when we feel it in our soul. When I realized that I was going to have surgery to get a thumb, my heart was overjoyed. Randomly I would burst into tears and praise Him for the thumb I was going to get.
photo credit unsplash

When we constantly feed our minds God’s word, think about gratitude, and live in the present moment, then we are able to break free from the negativity. I’ve learned, it’s harder for me to have a conversation with the devil when I’m talking with the Lord. 

Philippians 4:8King James Version (KJV)

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

My Health Plan

Did you know?
Inflammation is the root cause of many diseases. In fact, arthritis is really just inflammation of the joints. The same is true for heart disease. It is inflammation of the arteries. If we adopt a healthy diet and add in foods to help us eliminate inflammation, instead of consuming the foods that actually cause it, we will be able to dramatically boost our health. 

At one point, my whole body felt swollen. So I eliminated the top inflammation causing foods. I stopped eating dairy, corn or soybean oil, gluten, nitrates and cut back on processed food and sugar. Also, I don't eat fast food. If I do, I pay for it.

Then, I added in foods to help me fight inflammation. Turmeric is a spice: therefore, in my opinion, it is food. I take a supplement of 1,500 mg daily. Drinking a superfoods shake for breakfast has also helped me to add in more of the antioxidants that I need to fight the inflammation. I strive for 3 servings of vegetables, 2 servings of fruit, 4 servings of lean protein, and 1 serving of the good fat through avocados and nuts daily. I try to keep my complex carbohydrates to 2 servings daily. This is the best combination for me. 

If I eat dairy, too many carbs, and too much sugar, my body responds with inflammation. This causes me pain. I have learned the better that I eat, the better I will feel. 

With the weather changing, it is even harder for me to stay out of pain. The cold weather really affects my muscles. So I have to work harder to feel better. Yoga has become my best friend. I woke up yesterday morning with my sciatic nerve bothering me. It comes on suddenly. Before I went to work yesterday, I used a foam roller to work on my achy spots, and then I did yoga for pain relief. This morning I feel so much better. Sometimes we just have to experiment and find out what works for us. 

In the last few weeks so many of you have inquired about my health plan, and this is it. If you’d like to discuss it further or if you have questions, please let me know. It would be my pleasure to help you! <3

Love and blessings, 

Candida

Monday, November 6, 2017

Despite Your Circumstances


Regardless of what we do or don’t do, we will have to go through trials and tribulations. It’s part of life. While we don’t get to choose our hardships, we do get to decide how we are going to go through the trials. Are we going to give up at the first sign of trouble or are we going to keep getting up—despite how many times we get knocked down? 

In my experience of hardships, there are three steps to overcome any hardships. First, we must know why we want to overcome it. What is at stake for us if we don’t overcome it? When I was very sick and told that I was disabled, I realized that I had a choice. I could accept the doctor’s prognosis and believe that I would never get better or I could do everything in my power to get better. Thankfully, I chose the latter. 

This was my why when I was fighting to get better….

I want to live my life and plan my days based on what I want to do, rather than how I feel. I want to enjoy each day and be able to spend time with my kids doing fun things. Never again do I want a doctor to pat me on the shoulder and say, “ I’m sorry. There is nothing else we can do for you. We will keep you comfortable with pain meds.” Nor do I want to be told to sign up for disability to be able to feed my family because I am unable to work. Lying in the bed for months, I discovered the value of my health—and let me tell you, it is priceless

Next, in order for me to make the necessary changes, my pain of remaining in that state had to be greater than the pain it caused me to change. Once I raised my necessity to change, then I started looking for a plan to help me. It required me to work on my mindset, my physical body, and my spiritual relationship with God. 

Finally, once we know what we should be doing, then we must take consistent action. I went on a strict diet, adapted an exercise routine, starting reading self-help books, and spending more time praying and seeking God’s guidance. 

During the first few months, I had to constantly remind myself why I wanted to change. It was so hard. Not only is it difficult to change something about our lives, but the enemy always shows up to make it harder on us. He can’t make us quit, so he tries to persuade us to quit. 

With God’s help, however, we can overcome the trial as well as the enemy. When we decide to work on the person underneath it all, then we will develop the necessary skills to be able to overcome it. I believe the trials come into our lives to teach us things. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord. 

Today, I encourage you to adopt the mindset of an overcomer. Regardless of this trial, you can overcome it. When we go through the hard times with the Lord, we get to see another degree of His love for us. I have faced many trials with my Lord, and He has never let me down. It might not always work out like I wanted it to, but it’s always for the best. 


Love and blessings, 


Candida

P.S. If you haven’t already, please check out my latest book by clicking here. Despite Your Circumstances shows us the power of the mind as it embraces a positive and thankful attitude, and demonstrates how to build a rich life filled with meaning and joy. The author uses seemingly impossible situations in her life to prove that you can be an overcomer despite your circumstances.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Stop Crying Over Spilled Milk

My day didn’t start off as planned. This morning, I got my coffee pot ready to brew as usual, but when I hit the button for it to brew it just beeped and did nothing else. So it’s 5 a.m. on a Monday morning, I have goals and projects to work on, and my coffee pot died. Thankfully, I had some single coffee packets that work like a tea bag, but it made me stop and think for a few minutes. A few days ago my washing machine tore up, along with my steam mop. 

What can I learn from all of this?

We never know what is coming our way. Things catch us unaware. When something like happens we have two choices, we can either a.) cry about what happened to us and allow it to stop us from moving forward, or b.) learn from the situation and find a way to overcome it. 

Living with Amniotic Band Syndrome has definitely taught me how to adapt to life, and modify as I go. Most things don’t go as planned. Life is always changing. Problems are always arising. If we get stuck in a fixed mindset and believe there is only one way to do something, then we trouble strikes we will feel helpless. If we program our mind, however, to focus on finding the solution rather than focusing on the problem, then we are able to move forward quickly. Without wasting too much time crying about spilled milk (or in my case a broken coffee pot), as the old saying goes. 

Worrying about things will not make it any better. We can sit around and think about all the troubles we have right now all of the troubles we’ve had in the past, and all of the troubles we might have in the future, but none of that will help us in any way. It just makes us feel like a victim. If we can train our minds to be grateful in all situations, then the trials and tribulations won’t harm us. 

The good news is that I get a new coffee pot today. What kind should I get? What is your favorite?

Love and blessings, 


Candida

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

How To Stop Worrying


Most of the things that we worry about will never happen. All it takes is one inkling of doubt or worry to kick our imagination into full force. We take a what-if-this-happens and turn it into a real problem. Before we realize what is happening, we are completely stressed out and nearly crippled with worry. The thing that truly amazes me is that I can make myself sick over a problem that hasn't even happened yet. 

When we feel ourselves going to the dark thoughts of worry and despair, then we need to stop and analyze our problem. Is it real? Is it true? Or is it a figment of our imagination? Writing down my problems help me to look at them from different perspectives. Especially if I ask myself the question, what is the worst thing that can happen? Once I write it all down and look at it from all angles, then I usually see that my problem is not as bad as I had originally thought. Sometimes looking at the facts also helps me to better search for a solution to my problem. If it’s within my power to take care of the problem, then I need to do what I can do to help myself. If it’s beyond my capabilities then I just need to turn it over to God and trust Him to take care of it for me. It is His pleasure to help us. 

In all situations, we need to remember. 
  1. God knows our situation
  2. He has a plan to help us.

I have spent so much of my time regretting my past and worrying about my future. None of those thoughts have helped me live better today. In fact, it just took away my enjoyment of today. This moment, I am in right now, will never come again. If I waste today thinking about yesterday or worrying about tomorrow, then I have wasted the precious gift of now. When I focus on enjoying this moment right now, then I’m not worried about what might happen to me or what has happened to me. 

God gives me the strength I need for today. He doesn’t give me what I might need for tomorrow. When tomorrow comes He will give me what I need to conquer it. The Bible tells us that we are more than conquers through our God. Yes, I will have struggles on this side. I will have pain and suffering, but nothing can separate me from my God. Nothing can prevent me from going to Heaven one day to live with my God forever. When I look at my life that way, then I have no worries. God will provide me with what I need for every moment. 

I used to worry about becoming disabled and not being able to work. Guess what? It happened. And I survived. Instead of giving up, I put all of my energy into healing my body, instead of worrying about the pain and sickness. Through God’s guidance, I changed my diet, changed my thoughts, and ultimately changed my life. Now my health is better than it has been in years. What I feared as something horrible turned out to be a blessing. 

God is with us today, and He will be with us tomorrow. We truly have nothing to fear. As the problems in our lives arise, He will be there to lead us and guide us. Of all the people in my life who have hurt me, I have hurt myself the most. I am my own worst enemy. If you want to read a previous article I wrote about it, you can read it here

Love and blessings, 


Candida

P.S. If you haven’t already, please check out my latest book by clicking here. Despite Your Circumstances shows us the power of the mind as it embraces a positive and thankful attitude, and demonstrates how to build a rich life filled with meaning and joy. The author uses seemingly impossible situations in her life to prove that you can be an overcomer despite your circumstances.

Author shares message through Zippy the zebra