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The Power of the Time-Out

TRUE CONFESSIONS! Years ago, when I was fresh out of college, I had difficulty controlling my fear, anxiety, and anger. And when it came to feeling anger, I’d made some pretty stupid choices and knew I needed to get some help. Fortunately for me, someone was kind enough to share the “practice the pause” method of staying calm, cool, and collected. I’ve used this tactic for decades and it’s a great way to control negative emotions that can steal our joy, happiness, and contentment.

The steps taught to me were simple, easy to remember, and I put them into practice immediately. In fact, I never looked back. The more I used it, it became easier and easier to stop …take a breath, and continue without even getting angry, let alone, losing my temper.

But, it’s true power was revealed while at the deathbed of my first husband. The feelings of loss and sadness bubbled up. Instinctively, I asked myself, “What is really going on here?” And in a moment, it all rushed in …”Richard is finally in heaven, whole, happy, without pain or struggle. He’d never have to stick himself again with a needle!” My mind raced with all the good that had actually happened in the last five seconds. And then it hit me, “what if he’s on the ceiling looking down on me and my friend before he leaves us?” And that was it. I knew those moments would be gone for forever. I thanked him for our marriage, and for my step daughters. I promised to love and care for them as best I could. And asked him to say, “Hi!” to those I’d already lost here on earth, but were up there in Heaven. As crazy as all this sounds, the specialness and rareness of those moments impacted me as one of the greatest blessings of my life.

I began to pause when the feeling struck me that what was happening in the immediate present was important, impactful, and something I didn’t want to forget. Practicing the pause in this way has made my life feel richer, more balanced, and calm.

It wasn’t until recently when I saw a post on Facebook saying, “Practice the Pause,” that I felt compelled to share my gratitude for this simple practice.

To practice the pause to control negativity, simply follow these steps:

  1. STOP yourself long enough to get still. Stop moving (step into a restroom if you must). Stop thinking.
  2. BREATHE deeply for five or six breaths to calm, center, and ground yourself.
  3. ASK yourself, “What’s really happening here?” This is a good time to pray, “Lord, help me to see with clarity what is really happening here.” Then, pause to objectively look at the scene as an observer.
  4. ASSESS the situation and draw your conclusions.
  5. TAKE action to move ahead (or at least get out of the bathroom!) while praising God for fast answers to prayer, keeping you calm, and bolstering your mood.

However, there’s a flipside to this little method. You can do so much more with it when you use it to enjoy where you are. Anytime while taking a break, practice the pause. It’s slightly different, but much the same.

  1. STOP yourself long enough to get still. Stop moving. Stop thinking.
  2. BREATHE deeply for five or six breaths to calm, center, and ground yourself.
  3. ASK yourself, “What gifts are right in front of me?” This is where you can pray, “Lord, help me to see with clarity what gifts I’m taking for granted.”
  4. ASSESS what you can be grateful for.
  5. GIVE THANKS and praise God for all He’s granted you.

You’ll find more beauty, grace, and joy in the world when you practice the pause. It gives you the opportunity to respond vs. react, to be fully present vs. blindly moving through life missing some of the greatest stuff.

Anger, amongst other emotions, can be a real downer, not only for the one feeling angry, but for those surrounding, near, or next to them. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are so many options available, ranging from highly focused, individual therapy to self-help books. My personal favorite that I’ve found to help many friends and clients is The Anger Workout Book (btw, that’s a link to buy the workbook if learning to control your anger is something you need to do. If you decide to purchase it, I get a few cents. Just sayin’).

Take control of your emotions by practicing the pause and giving yourself the time and space to acknowledge and address, with clarity, what your response should be.

You can do it. I believe in you!

Money Savvy Woman, Inc. © 2015

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Smooth & Soothe with this Easy, Inexpensive, DIY Holiday Gift

Delight the Senses With This Amazing Sugar Scrub

Originally posted on December 19, 2014 by doTERRA

Looking for a festive and fun way to spread Christmas cheer? Try this fun candy cane scrub made with Peppermint essential oil! This scrub takes only a few ingredients and can easily be customized to your favorite colors and essential oils.

What You Need:

3/4 cup white sugar (you can also use brown sugar or sea salt)

1/2 cup Fractionated Coconut Oil (you could also use almond oil, grapeseed oil, or olive oil).

12 drops Peppermint essential oil

Skin safe food coloring


1. Combine sugar and Fractionated Coconut Oil into bowl and divide equally into two bowls.

2. In one bowl, add red food coloring until you get your desired color.

3. Layer the red and white scrub to create a ‘candy cane’ effect.

4. Tie a cute ribbon and tag on the container and you’re done!

– See more at: http://www.mydoterra.com/rcabourne/#/diyGrid

Get More of What You Want When You Practice This One Thing

Mindfulness. Mindfulness is what I’m doing my best to bring into my life across the board. What I’ve found is that when I’m mindful of certain things, I’m so much more appreciative …and satisfied. And that’s my hope for this blog is that you will find more peace and satisfaction by simply shifting your thinking.

What is mindfulness? According to Psychology Today, the definition is:

Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience.

What it isn’t is thoughtlessness, apathy, carelessness, or indifference. A good example I can share is a quick story from my college days—it’s actually how I met my roommate. I was in the student café eating and studying. Gretty came up to me and asked if she could share my table, which she did. But the next thing she said has stung me to this day. She said, “I just had to meet you because I’ve never seen anyone eat like you. You have no interest in it at all!”

Wow. Nothing could be further from the truth. I LOVED food. It was my favorite thing to do …well, cooking was. It never dawned on me that I wasn’t thinking when I ate. From that day on, I don’t believe I’ve mindlessly eaten since. I learned to savor my food with the help of my friend.

What I found was that slowing down and paying attention to what I was doing heightened the enjoyment of the experience. As I’ve matured over a few decades, I’ve learned to extend the habit beyond the food to work, fun, and relationships.

So how do we become more mindful? Here’s a brief bullet-list of ideas. Pick one and commit to practice it for a week or more, then move onto another one.

  • Slow down. Stop rushing around. Take your time.
  • Do one thing at a time. Hint: I had to retrain myself to rethink the expectation that multi-tasking is the way to go. I used a kitchen timer to focus on one thing 15 minutes at a time until I’d broken the nasty habit.
  • Be present with the people in your life. Whether you’re at work, at home, or at your favorite restaurant, the greatest gift you can give them, and yourself, is 100% of your attention.
  • Taste your food and drink. Savor! If you don’t know how, simply bring in all five of your senses into the eating experience. Imagine a warm, homemade tortilla. Got that picture in your mind? Can you smell it? Taste it? Feel it’s warm, softness? Now listen. What do you hear?
  • When doing work—business or chores—think of it as a meditation. Folding clothes comes to mind for me.
  • Take a few minutes every day to smell the roses. Even a 5-minute break can make a huge difference in reducing stress and increasing peace of mind. Those of you who visit the Money Savvy community on Facebook know, I do my best to step outside and enjoy the beauty of God’s creations in my yard every day.

There are so many by-products of adopting mindfulness. Here’s a few to ponder:

  • Projects are completed in less time and with less stress.
  • Anxiety is reduced when you focus and stay in the present.
  • Eating more slowly and savoring your food triggers your satisfaction more quickly enabling you to eat less and enjoy it more.
  • Mundane tasks take on a new meaning and bring calm instead of chaos.
  • Relationships become closer and more intimate when you’re fully present.

I’ve slowed things down significantly since my car accident, but even more so in the last year or so. Starting the day with a 15-minute devotion followed by a ritual breakfast meal has changed my life. Once I mastered those two items, I’ve added so many more things that bless my life instead of flying through it, not realizing what I was missing, and feeling wrung out at the end of the day.

Slowing down and doing less goes against what we’ve been taught, but your freedom, serenity, and lifestyle are all greatly improved by being mindful. Pick one item and commit to it for at least a week. You’ll be glad you did.

Remember, it’s your money, your rules, your way!

Money Savvy Woman, Inc. © 2015