Don’t Be Afraid to Get Help!

We are all so busy in our everyday lives!  We all have unique circumstances that require attention whether it be dogs, cats, kids, husbands/wives, parents, sisters, brothers, work, business, home, apartment, grandparents, friends, projects, and the list goes on.  We don’t have to own our own business to know that sometimes we just need help!  Are there certain activities that you absolutely HATE to do?  Something that you would hire out if you could?  Then do it!

live breathe inspire

I think some of us feel bad if we hire out work.  Doesn’t that mean we can’t handle it ourselves?  NO!  I want you to stop thinking that way.  For so many of us we try to be superman/superwoman, and sometimes it just doesn’t work.  What I have been realizing this past week or so is that I would rather NOT be superwoman to my family and be able to spend more time with them.

I know this might be a foreign thought to some of us, and some of us enjoy everything we do around the house or in our business.  That is great!  As long as it isn’t taking away from other important things in life.  If you do everything for your family and still have time for yourself and for quality time with your family, then keep doing what you are doing… and by the way, can we talk sometime? LOL!

What I want you to do is think of the one thing in your life that you would hire out if you could?  Now, I want you to do it!  That is right… I want you to take the steps, and hire it out!  There are so many great places to get help.  If your help doesn’t require being at your home, then there are a lot of places to get virtual assistants for everything you might need.  One of my favorite places is O’Desk, but you could go to Elance as well.

You can post a job you want done and have people apply, or you could look for someone you would like to hire based on their qualifications.  Either way, there are some great people who can help you do what you need to get done for a decent price!  You don’t have to own your own business to get an assistant!  Think about how much money your time is worth.  If you think about it, why would you spend 2 hours trying to research how to do a specific project online when you could hire an assistant who knows what they are doing?

If what you need help with is at your home, then find a reputable company to do the work for you.  You might have to be there while the work is being done in order to oversee it, but you could be working on other things at that time!  If you are short on cash, then try to come up with creative ways to find help!  Instead of hiring a company to mow your yard, find a neighborhood kid who will do it for cheaper.  Not only is your lawn getting mowed, but you are also helping a child learn entrepreneurship and how to manage his/her money!

If that even seems like a stretch for you at this point, then set a goal, and once you make a certain amount of money, start hiring out the chore you hate doing the most.  For me, I love doing the laundry.  That is something I will never give up:)  But the cleaning on the other hand is a different story.  I absolute hate wasting my time cleaning.

If you are nervous with starting with a virtual assistant (like I was), just try someone out for a small project you need done.  Chances are if you hired a good worker, then you will quickly realize how much time, energy, and even money they will save you!  Yes… I said money!!  When I first hired my virtual assistant, I was nervous.  I soon realized that what it took me sometimes 2 hours to complete it only took her 30 minutes!! That is 1.5 hours saved, and I only had to pay her 30 minutes of her time.  It is a win-win for everyone:)

If you would like more information, you can email me at livebreatheinspireblog@gmail.com.  I would love to answer any questions you may have, or help you with anything else you might need!

Remember… sometimes we can’t do it alone, and that is OKAY!  We aren’t perfect nor should we be.  Know what those special tasks are that only you can do, and try to get to the point where you can hire out the rest!

What is something you would like to get help with?

Rini~

 

Taking Care of You

IMG_1833.JPG

On an airplane before you even leave the tarmac, you are reminded of a very important concept. In case of a loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will drop, and you are instructed to put yours on first, before helping others. This is because if you don’t take care of yourself, how can you possibly take care of anyone else? Hello! This is your friendly stewardess reminding you to take care of yourself before you take care of anyone else.
This may seem incredibly selfish and against your instincts as a mother, friend, or human, but I assure you, it’s necessary. If you’re already taking care of número uno first and foremost, that is great! Maybe you will enjoy some of these ideas.
Like any good intervention, the first step is realization and acceptance. Are things that are less important coming before your health and wellness? Do you consistently put tasks for others before tasks for yourself? If you’re unsure, ask a spouse, parent, or friend. They generally will tell you like it is.
The first step to breaking the cycle is to start doing something for yourself. For me it was taking time for myself everyday and not feeling guilty about it. Ok, so maybe I took the time first and had to work on the whole guilty thing, but now I am so thankful I did. For you it may be starting to put your health before your kids wants. Or possibly taking fifteen minutes at the end of the day for a bubble bath. Whatever it is, make sure you remain consistent.
What can you do for yourself today that will make you a healthier, more well rounded individual?

Odd Ways to Simplify Your Life

IMG_0017

I know we have talked about simplicity before, but I never went in depth about some things that can really help you maintain a simpler, easier life. There are several ways you can go about this and many of these techniques can be transferred to other areas of your life. For example, one of the ways I have been trying to simplify my life is by unsubscribing from all junk emails. But the same could be applied to junk mail as well. It’s a waste for me to receive countless marketing ads when I don’t buy anything. It’s also a waste of time to sort through all this mail and delete the emails or recycle the actual mail. I can get up to 200 emails a day and most are junk. This advice isn’t just for people who have too little time in their day. So find that unsubscribe at the bottom of your emails and go to town! Or call the number listed on the magazines or circulars to get your name taken off the list. Ok so let’s simplify this so you don’t have to read as much!
1.Stop junk emails at the source and unsubscribe!
2.Stop junk mail at the source and end subscriptions.
3.Get rid of excess clothing that is not allowing you to see what you really have to wear.
4.Plan out your meals in advance and buy ingredients for that specific meal. Don’t try to throw things together at the last minute.
5.Touch things once. This means, don’t stack things up in piles to be dealt with later. If it’s in your hand, put it where it belongs, not on the kitchen counter. ( I know this is hard, but it will make a difference, trust me).
6.Get rid of apps on your phone you don’t use! Try this: move all your applications but one to the second or third screen on your phone. As you use an app, move it to the first. After a month, delete the apps you haven’t used.
7.Plan and make to do lists in one place. I have seen women who have three calendars and four places where they keep their to do or to get lists. Simplify. I recommend Erin Condren life planners. There is a whole community that can give you ideas and help you stay organized. You can see how I use mine by following me on Instagram @ LiveBreatheInspire. Get $10 off by using my referral code.https://www.erincondren.com/referral/invite/jesssonmore0225
8.If you have to drive somewhere, try to plan other stops that coincide. I learned this from serving my way through college. If your going someplace anyways, why not make the trip count and get other things done as well. For example, if I am dropping my hubby off at the airport I will oftentimes stop by Costco on the way there or on the way home. It’s about a 20 minute drive there and so I will plan in advance and make the trip once, accomplishing two tasks. Seems simple, but it can save a lot of time.
9.Have less stuff! This one is just as it sounds. I know I keep going over this, but when you have a ton of things in your life, you spend a lot of time organizing, fixing, and taking care of them. Ok, I am done, but seriously, try to get rid of some of it.
10.I am guilty of having several email addresses. I am in the process of simplifying it down to one. My bad, but seriously, keep it simple if you can help it.
11.Keep your digital life simple. Keep your files in one place and make sure everything is properly backed up. I can’t imagine how I would find anything without dropbox and my organization system in it.

These are just a few ways you can keep it simple in your own home. What do you do to simplify? We would love it hear it!
-Jessica

How are you doing? #changelivestoday challenge!

live breathe inspire

Hi!

I wanted to check in to see how we were doing with the summer challenge!  I know it has made a difference my life greatly!  To see the impact it is creating is a wonderful feeling!

For those of you who are new to this summer challenge here is a recap:

It is so easy to stay in our bubble and not worry about other people’s situations, and it is sometimes easy to look down on them. I think we need to change our perspective a little bit by encouraging one another. What better day to start this challenge than on a Monday!

The challenge is every Monday to encourage someone who you think needs it. It can be a co-worker, friend, family member, kid, or even a stranger you meet in the street. Our world is hurting, and we need to take the time to make it a better place.

It will also help us to look outside of ourselves and focus on other peoples’ needs. I love the idea of “Monday Motivation” which is what inspired me to start this challenge. The encouragement could be a note, thoughtful words, a present, a listening ear, or even just a hug. If you become in tune with people, then you will start to think of ways that could brighten their day. If for some reason you cannot think of any way to encourage them on your own, then there is a world wide web that has ideas on almost everything!

We want you to share YOUR stories!  What has been happening in your life?

If you are new to this, then what are you planning to do for people the rest of the summer?  What a great way to #giveback!

~Rini and Jess

 

Ways to Stay Inspired!

Nothing is more exciting than starting a new adventure!  The thrill of something new is always so much fun, but then after a while, things start to fade.  This is why so many people fail at succeeding in the things in life that they really want.  One of my tricks to help me stay on track is staying inspired!

live breathe inspire

There are so many ways to keep you inspired, but you have to actively be seeking it.  I not only surround myself with an inspiring area, but I also surround myself with inspirational people.  I will give you a few suggestions, but there is no limit to the amount of things we can do to stay inspired on a daily basis.

Stay Inspired By:

1.  Setting up a beautiful work area.  Whether you work at home or in an office, make sure that you create a space that inspires you.  You are likely to not only accomplish more but be more creative in an amazing space.  Make sure you keep things organized as well.  Check out Jess’s workspace, and my own!

2.  Keep inspirational quotes and bible verses around you.  These will help you stay on track, and remind you to seek God’s will first.  This can look different depending on how much space you have.  You can either get picture quotes/bible verses to put on your wall, graphic design quotes that you keep on your computer, or frame some quotes in picture frames to put around you.  I love having mine on my desktop, and I refer to them often!

3.  Keep the right company.  This might seem obvious, but you have to make sure you hang out around people that inspire you and lift you up.  You will not only be more productive and creative, but you will have more confidence with people supporting you and trying to help you.  Anything in life is possible!  Pick friends that will lift you up and challenge you to be a better person.  When you surround yourself with people who are inspiring they can raise you up to their level!

I hope these will not only help keep you inspired, but also help you achieve your dreams in life.  If anyone ever tells you that you cannot do something, know that they are completely wrong!  You can do whatever you set your mind to.  It might not work on the first try, and you have to work hard at it.  It will come though if you continue pursuing it and learning from your mistakes.

Please take at least one thing from this post and incorporate it into your life.  If you are doing all these things, but are still struggling with your creativity, then try changing your scenery.  Go for a beautiful walk/hike or plan a trip to the beach.  Getting outside of your comfort zone every once in a while, and changing scenery will help keep your creativity juices flowing!

What other things inspire you?

Rini~

 

A Moment of Peace Please! #2 Learn to Say NO!

20140530-173537-63337335.jpg

For some people this next step towards peace comes quickly and easily, but for others it’s a stumbling block. I am of the latter group. I have no concept of boundaries or the word no.  I cannot give examples for fear of hurting people’s feelings, but I have the hardest time turning people down if they are asking for my help or my time. I have overextended myself numerous times when I shouldn’t have and it is no ones fault but my own.

I see people having the most problems in this area when it comes to parenting. Misconceptions and social pressure have fed parents the lie that if their child wants something and it would be beneficial for them, if they do not provide it they are bad parents. This is completely not true. Take care of yourself first and foremost because you cannot take care of others if you’re not ok. This is why on planes, when they lose pressure, they instruct you to put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting others( your kids). This is me instructing you to take care of número uno first and foremost. It will not hurt your child to sit out one season of sports, but it may hurt you to have three kids in three different sports all year long! Ok, you get the point. But seriously, you will raise more well adjusted children if they know they are not the only thing that matters in this big world and see you taking care of yourself.  Think of one thing you’re doing for your child or children that is just totally draining to you as a person.  Do they absolutely need it in their life?  Or would cutting it out give you more peace then it gives them pain!  Think sports, trips, and anything around the home that they can do themselves.  Go ahead people!  Your still probably awesome parental units!  😉

Secondly I see people who can’t say no to others. This is me. I’m a yes-aholic. If I have the spot free on my calendar and someone wants me to muck out a barn I would do it. Not because I have the time, but because I am a sucker for everyone in need! My mom always tells me to, “focus on yourself and pray for others,” because I am constantly trying to do more than I should. Please don’t take me the wrong way. Yes I am a little anthropic, but this mainly stems out of my need to fix everyone and everything. It’s a problem, I know, I’m working on it. So why is it important to learn to say no?  Because if you are part of a community and have friends or family that are in your life, you are bound to be asked to do more than you can handle.   Know your limits and learn to tell people no if you cannot reasonably do something without throwing the rest of your life off balance.  Remember, and this is a theme here, you cannot help others physically, mentally, or spiritually if you are neglecting yourself.  Make a list of people who you have a hard time saying no to and some instances where you said yes when you shouldn’t have.  Come up with responses that tell these people no in a loving and kind way.  Baby steps!

Finally a third area in which I see people having a hard time saying no is to themselves.  Self- discipline  and saying no to the negative desires we all have is crucial to a healthy and balanced life.  I don’t know about you, but if I didn’t say no to myself it would be ice-cream and chicken wings all day long! What what!?  But I don’t do that, because I need to be healthy in order to take care of my family.  The same is true with being sedentary, cheating, lying, and pretty much any other temptations we face as humans.  Just say no!  Anything considered bad is labeled that for a reason! Take it from people who have gone before you and stay away from eating coke and cookies all day, you will not regret it!  So list the things you have been saying yes to that should be no’s.  For me it’s being a lazy couch potato at the end of each day instead of going for a run.  I always say, “Yes Jessica, what a great idea, go ahead and sit on the couch instead of trying to burn off the 30 extra lbs attached to your body.”   When I should be saying, “No dum dum! Put on those tennies and hit the road!”

 

As always, would love to hear about your no problems! And if you happen to be awesome at saying no, let us know how you do it! We would love to hear from you!

-Jessica

You Are The Heart Of The Home!

What is your role in your home?  Are you a peacemaker?  A chef?  Are you the brains?  Or are you the brawn?  Are you the refuge in the storm? Or are you causing the storm?  I have caused quite a few storms in my marriage and want to share with you my journey to be the heart of the home.   IMG_0009

I have wanted to write this post for awhile.  I have really been contemplating my role in our home lately.  I truly believe women are supposed to be the heart of the home.  Not that they can’t lead, or shouldn’t make decisions, but that they really should model peace, love, and kindness in their home.  If I learned one thing from watching all the seasons of “Wife Swap” is that the wife sets the tone, mood, and feel of the home.  If she is harsh, the children and husband are generally scared and also react harshly.  If the wife is obsessed with a sport, craft, or hobby, so is everyone else.   If the wife is not fulfilled, everyone feels her discontentment.  I think the phrase, “If momma isn’t happy, no one is happy,” is wiser than I realized.

What tone do you set for your home?  If your curious, ask the other people in your household or a trusted friend.  If the words “tiger” and “mom” are in the same sentence you may want to continue reading.  For some women the error might not be as obvious.  Being perpetually busy, always stressed, disinterested in life, obsessed with the wrong things, and more can set a bad tone in your home.  As a the woman in the house you don’t have to be a mom to be an influencer in your home. I have no kids, but I realized that the tone I have set in our home is as I say “no bueno!”

It took me awhile to realize my faults, however, four years I have been on the wrong path and I just now realized it.   My husband has been gone most of the time now for about two years and I have taken on all the roles in our home.  I didn’t set out in our married life trying to rule the home.  I just noticed that when he was gone all the time everything fell on me.  This is no excuse for being a controlling super ninny, but this is how it happened.  Now when he comes home I have a hard time letting go and letting him take over.  When did I become such a controlling wife?  So what if he makes a mistake?  Isn’t that how I learned?  Isn’t that how I grew as a person?  By trying things and making mistakes?  I should have realized the tone I was setting was one of business and to-do lists.  When I am constantly working to try to catch up with the ever growing workload I don’t take time for the things in life that matter most.

My mother in law Jennie and I had a heart to heart a few months ago and something she said didn’t really hit me until recently.  She said she was afraid to call me because she knew how busy and stressed I always was.  She didn’t want to bother me.  How could I not see that!  People are afraid to call me because they know I am barely keeping my head afloat!  It’s my fault entirely that I am here.  That I have set an improper tone in our marriage.  I have always chosen to try to get everything done.  Thinking if I could just work a bit harder, one day I will be done and can rest.  But here’s the kicker, I am never done! I have never been done and will never be done.  That’s life!  Right now my to do list spans three pages.  I mean BIG pages, like the 8 1/2 by 11 type of pages lol.  But I am making it a priority to write to you all because I really feel like this is important.

Don’t make the mistakes I made.  The house doesn’t have to be perfect, the laundry will be there tomorrow (unless you don’t have clean underwear and in that case, please, do the laundry), and your tv show can be watched on netflix five months from now.  I feel like women, myself included, have forgotten the most important thing in life, LOVE! It’s the people that matter! You can literally take NOTHING to the grave with you, but you can live on through the impact you made on others in your life.  That starts at home, but it’s also the hardest to do at home.  I know that most people treat their closest family and friends the worst.  Why is that?  That we give our best to the people we will never see again, but we cannot be kind and gentle with our own family? Please don’t stop reading because I have really great news!

Heart of Your Home

Even if you have been the abominable snowman in your household you can change.  You can be the wife, mother, daughter, and friend you were intended to be.   I would never bring you down and then not show you the way back up!  I know it’s hard, but there are ways you can change and make your household the safe, loving, and joyful place it’s supposed to be.

1.  Search for the areas you need to work on.

-This could be anger, sadness, lack of energy, hostility, judgement, laziness, disorganization, business, harshness, too high expectations, etc.

-Ask your family what they would like to see you change and you can’t get mad!

-If you can ask your parents or a trusted friend.  I am lucky enough to have both who are not afraid to tell me what’s what! 🙂

2. Make a physical list of the traits or qualities that are negatively impacting others in your home.

-Since your home isn’t perfect I am going to assume there will be other’s who may test your resolve and patience, but remember, it’s your home.  No matter what hubby or the kids do, it’s you who will make the biggest impact in the long run, if you can make it!

3.  List out things you can do on a daily basis to combat those traits and write them out next to each one.

-For business I wrote that I will never turn down time with others to do things that don’t have to be done that day.

I also wrote that I will take time for myself to workout or do other things I need to do in order to take care of myself.

-Next to unloving, I wrote that I need to find the love languages of the people in my life by the end of the week, so if you don’t get a call or text,  please send me your list, I would love to know! (If your not sure what love languages are, please look up the book and read it! It’s pretty dead on.  Basically it says that everyone has different ways of giving and receiving love.  Most people don’t receive love the same way. For example, please don’t buy me gifts, they do nothing for me, but sit and talk to me for an hour and I will feel so loved! But my friend Kate on the other hand loves gifts and they make her feel special and loved.  So for each person it’s unique, but knowing that information about others can help you to be a better friend, mother, lover, daughter, and whatever else you happen to be.)

In addition to finding out their love languages I wrote that I need to do something with that knowledge.  I need to say the things I feel, or send the gifts that I think of when I am shopping, or just spend the time I would like to with the people I love.

-I could keep going, but trust me,  you don’t want me to!

4.  Put the list where you can see it everyday, and don’t be afraid to tell your family what you’re working on in order to get accountability and support.  I am sure they will be excited and it might encourage them to do the same.  One of the greatest qualities my parent’s instilled in Rini and I was a drive to be better.  We constantly saw them working on improving themselves while we were growing up and we definitely never forgot.

Please feel free to comment or contact us with any ideas or questions.  We would love to hear from you all.

In addition, the woman is the heart of the home spiritually.  If you want to change your home for good in the best and purest way possible start praying for yourself and your family.  The loving, kind, peaceful woman you want to be can be found through God’s love and searching for Him is the quickest way to change your home.  It happened in mine and I will never forget how amazing it was to see the changes unfolding in our lives.  I just hope that over time I can learn to be the woman who God wants me to be for my family.  I am also thankful for the friends He has brought me who are such great role models in their own homes!

-Jess