One Thing You Need to See Your Dreams Come True

We all have dreams we want to see become a reality. Some dream of traveling to an exotic country. Others dream of owning the latest hot sports car. Still others dream of finding the love of their life or writing a best selling book. We can put all kinds of effort into trying to make things happen, but there is one key ingredient that we must have if we want to see our dreams come true.

Some say it is will power. I know my will power only goes so far – just show me a jar of peanut butter. We can try to use will power but sooner or later our will power will run out. It is not brute strength, intelligence, knowledge, or great wealth. All of these things are helpful but without this one key ingredient we will not be successful. The one key ingredient to seeing your dreams come true is the power of Faith. We must BELIEVE it is possible to lose that 20 pounds, run that marathon, write that book, or take that trip of a lifetime.

For example, I have wanted to go to Argentina for 10 years. Ever since I toured the Argentine Tall Ship that docked in the Baltimore Harbor one summer, I promised myself “Someday, I am going to go to Argentina.” Now traveling to South America as a single woman is not exactly an easy thing to do. There are safety issues, language issues, and travel issues. Yet, I had faith. I was going to go to Argentina.

Two years ago, I decided it was time. After a few months of planning, lots of research, and applying for a Brazilian visa, I was off to South America on American Airlines. I wound up visiting not only Argentina, but Brazil as well. It was a dream come true and all because of the seed of Faith that I planted 10 years earlier.

So, what exactly is Faith?

To put it simply, Faith is the positive belief of things not yet seen. It is the belief that our dreams can come true. It is the fuel that fires up our engines. Without faith, we idle through life, never really achieving anything great and watching our dreams go up in a puff of smoke. A life without faith is not the life we were intended to live.

Faith begins with a belief in God because God is the ultimate source of all good things as well as the power to achieve them. When I exclude God from the equation, I am setting myself up for a lot of hard work and eventual failure and disappointment. It is God who gives us the grace and the power to succeed and flourish.

I like to think of Faith as a muscle we all possess. In the same way we need to develop our physical muscles to lift stronger weights, if we want to achieve greater things in life, it is necessary to strengthen our spiritual muscle. Each goal we achieve builds our faith and our confidence. We can stand on our victories and our failures like stepping stones that help us step up to the next level.

We all fall at times. The key is to pick ourselves up and get back in the race. Proverbs 24:16 says “Though the righteous may fall 7 times, but the Lord will always raise him back up.” There is no shame in failing. In fact, failure is one of the best ways to strengthen our spiritual muscle. Look how many times Thomas Edison and Abraham Lincoln failed. Failure builds character and strengthens our spiritual muscle. If you have failed recently, I encourage you to get back in the game. If you’re still on this earth, God still has a plan and a purpose for your life, but it is up to us to do our part to make our dreams come true.

If you have a dream you want to see come true, ask yourself this question “Do I truly believe this can happen in my life?” Stretch yourself. Start saying things like “I believe I can break this habit.” “I believe I can lose this weight.” “I believe I can make it through this.” Whatever you’re going through, use it as an opportunity to strengthen your spiritual muscle and to grow your faith. You will be surprised at the results and when you look back at your life and see how many of your dreams really have come true, you will be amazed!

If you liked this post, please comment or click on the +1 Google icon. Until next time, keep looking up!

Ariel

10 Signs You’re in the Wrong Relationship – From a Woman’s Point of View

Relationships can be a dream or a nightmare and it can be very difficult to navigate the waters. This may explain why the number of single Americans continues to grow. Did you know that singles make up over half of the United States population?

Some 124.6 million Americans were single in August, 2014. Now that is quite an impressive statistic. As a long-time divorced lady, I have some experience with what can possibly go wrong in a relationship. Sometimes, we miss the obvious “red flags” because we are a) lonely b)already smitten or c)clueless. As they say, love is blind. So in an attempt to remove the blindfold, and keep my fellow single friends from going through unnecessary pain and angst, today I am going to share 10 signs that indicate you may be in the wrong relationship. I am writing from a woman’s point of view, but many of these signs can just as well apply to women for my male readers.

1. The guy never has money to pay your way.
You are a treasure, a gift, and your presence deserves to be honored. If a guy always asks you to pay your own way, he may not be able to afford you.

2. Your partner tells “little white lies”. I’m sorry, but a lie is a lie. If someone is withholding information or distorting the facts, they are lying. If the person is compelled to not tell the whole truth about small situations, what is going to happen when something big comes up?

3. The person only talks about himself. Nothing is more boring than to spend an evening listening to a guy go on and on about himself, his accolades, his children, his wealth, ya da ya da ya da. If the guy doesn’t show an equal amount of interest in you, my dear girl, right from the get go, he is not going to later on. This behavior indicates a possible narcissistic personality and is unhealthy, so run!

4. The guy wants to get you in bed early on. Ok, I admit I am a bit old school and I know times are changing. However! I still live by my mother’s old adage “Why should he buy the cow if he can get the milk for free?” Sleeping with a guy is no guarantee he is going to stay with you. In fact, if he is pestering you early on for sex, that is a clear indicator of his true motives. Move on.

5. The guy drinks a lot, smokes a lot, eats a lot, uses drugs or gambles a lot. These are all addictive behaviors and you are not going to be the one to “fix him”. If your beau displays any of these behaviors to excess, again – move on!

6. He can’t seem to hold a steady job. I once dated a guy who had a four-page resume. There was always some excuse why the job didn’t work out. You have to ask yourself “What is the common denominator?” Now I don’t mean if a poor guy loses his job, you should dump him. What I mean is if the guy has a string of jobs that only last a short time and then he is out looking again, tell him to look in the mirror first and move on!

7. He has a lot of female “friends”. Typically when a guy tells you “She’s just a friend,” that usually means she is an ex-girlfriend. And if she is still hanging around, she is still interested in him. You want a guy who only has eyes for you, a guy who has long-term relationships. You do not want a playboy, a player, or a Casanova romeo. Unless, of course, you want your heart broken.

8. The guy offers to buy you. I once was told “If we get together, you’ll never have to worry about money again,”. It was all I could do not to gag. This is a manipulative ploy wealthy men use to get a woman. Any self-respecting female can support herself and does not need to be “taken care of” by a man. Times have changed, and no longer do women look to men to provide for them. Women today are looking for deeper values such as commitment, communication, intimacy and such.

9. Your friend has a critical spirit. He makes cutting or sarcastic remarks at your expense and then brushes it off by saying “I was only joking with you,” or “Can’t you take a joke?” Sorry, buddy. No dice. Sarcasm is a sign of insecurity. A secure man will never undermine his lady in any way. It is not funny. It is petty and unacceptable. Again, gals, move on. It will only get worse as time goes by.

10. Last but not least, do not get involved with a man who is already in another relationship. I consider being separated still being married. I do not want to be the reason someone’s marriage dissolves. If a guy is seeing another woman “on the side”, you don’t want him. Love triangles only bring heartache and pain. Find someone who is unattached and available. The last thing you need in a budding romance is drama.

Ok, so there you have it. Ten signs you are in the wrong relationship. I’m speaking from personal experience on a lot of these and hope this post has opened your eyes to see if any of these could be true in your relationship. The sooner you spot these signs and get out, the quicker you will be able to move on to find Mr. Wonderful.

When we find the inner power we all possess, we will be more confident in our choices and find the courage to say no to unhealthy situations. Love to hear your thoughts on this post. Until next time, keep looking up and do click on the +1 google icon so I know you liked this post.

The Single Most Important Factor to Success

What is success? How do we define it and how do we achieve it? Many are looking for the answer, but the truth is there is no one answer.

Success is a value. It is personal. Each individual who is motivated to be successful will need to come to terms with his or her own idea of what success looks like for him/herself. Some define success in terms of fame, popularity, and being well-known. For others, it means making a 6-figure income, achieving a high-ranking corporate position, and having all the luxuries of life at their disposal. A third group define success in terms of doing what they enjoy and value such as being able to spend more time with the family, maintaining their health and doing good in the world. What’s more, one’s idea of success can change as we achieve in different areas of our lives and fulfill what Maslow calls our basic human needs.

Whatever your definition of success is, there is one factor that is the common denominator in success of any type. I’ll call it “the ability to show up”. For example, to be a success on the job, we must report to work everyday, arrive on time, and be mentally alert. We must “show up”. After working in a corporate environment world for over 30 years, showing up is a given. A fellow coworker put it this way “They expect us to be on our A game every day” and it was true. You were either 100% or they didn’t need you.

If we want to be a successful parent, it is important to show up there as well: for the baseball game, the soccer match, the school play, the Honor awards ceremony. We might not think of it as important, but to our son or daughter our presence means the world. Kids notice more when we’re NOT there, than when we are. As a single parent, it meant cutting out of work earlier and staying later the next day, but if it means seeing my son hit a home run, get a chance to pitch, or score that goal, it was well worth it.

In our personal relationships, if we tell our spouse or friend we will be available at a certain time to have lunch or dinner will we show up? Or will we call with an excuse at the last minute? Will we be available to help out when crisis hits and a friend is in need? Will we show up to visit, cook or bring them a meal? Will we listen to our spouse talk about his/her day and tune out the television, computer and cell phone? Will we be present?

What about showing up for ourselves? Suppose I want to lose some weight. I tell myself I am going to work out or go to the gym 4 times a week. Will I show up? Will I do what I said I was going to do? Same thing with learning any new skill such as learning to dance, practicing yoga, meditation, reading the Bible, or training for a 10k or a marathon. It goes for writing these blog posts. I’ve been writing them faithfully for six years now. Do you think it’s been easy? Not at all, but I can tell you I’ve learned a lot about showing up even in my free time. I learned to sit myself down at the computer and write. It wasn’t as hard writing the book because I had so much inside I wanted to pour out on paper. It still took discipline to do this after working 8 hours at a mentally demanding career. I tracked the days and the times I spent writing to establish a regular writing routine. You might say I was driven to show up.

Finally, what about showing up for God? When we hear that call to help out at church, visit a sick friend, or volunteer for a worthy charity, will we show up? In the morning when we know God is waiting to meet with us and talk with us in that quiet time, will we show up? Will we rise a few minutes earlier if necessary so we can have that special time with God? I have realized this is the most important appointment of my day. Everything falls into place and I have a sense of peace knowing I am fully protected and prepared for whatever comes at me during the day.

The key, I think, to success in any area of our life begins with this one simple step – just show up. When we want to do something new, something different, something we feel we are not quite ready for, all we have to do is show up. We don’t need to have the whole plan mapped out from A to Z. If we’re on a God-sized mission, we won’t even know the next step most of the time. All we have to do is show up and do “the next right thing”.

What is it you want to achieve in this life? What area of life do you wish to be successful in? Ask yourself this question: “Am I showing up?” This really makes a tough job seem much less difficult. When we want to achieve something new it can seem like a mountain in front of us, but really, as Jesus said, if we have faith the size of a mustard seed, we can move mountains. In other words, what may seem impossible to us, begins with the first step of just showing up and believing. If we keep showing up day after day, we are going to make progress. We will slowly climb that mountain. We will gain clarity on what to do next to achieve our goal.

If this post has resonated with you, I’d love to hear your feedback. Please click the Google +1 button or leave a comment. Until next time, keep looking up!

Ariel