the -ing factor

how to have more spectacular ordinary moments

spectacular ordinary moments:  a recap

the other day my daughter { who is on the fast track of adulting right now } came over.  she's been living on her own for the last 3 months, struggling but still doing her thing.

when she comes over i get all giggly and stuff because 1) there's more estrogen in the house, albeit only momentarily,  2) i really love hanging out with her and  3) she gets me { see #1 in this sentence }.

don't you love it when your folks get you?

...cause living with a 15 yr old smack dab in the middle of male hormonal hell { did i write that? ...YES i did! } and a hubby who, without being intentional, is sometimes very decidedly male { there goes #1 again } can make a girl, who definitely appreciates her feminine side, so batty that reverting to my giggly phase when my girl's around somehow lessons the impact of said overflow of testosterone.

so said hubby and i decided the four of us would go out to dinner instead of cooking and that decision inspired what i like to call a "spectacular ordinary moment".

3 Steps from Ordinary to Extraordianry

we talked plenty & laughed at jokes only our family would know, with some howling at one point that i had to remind them there were other patrons around who might not appreciate that what we thought was so spectacularly funny was really not.

after writing in my journal about this experience i remembered a post i wrote about ways to bring in more spectacular ordinary moments and i thought i'd share it again with you cause reminders like this need repeating.  enjoy!

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how can you turn your ordinary day into something more spectacular?

here are 3 ways you can use to raise the ordinary factor....

1. pay attention

that’s right.  1st….become more aware.  ever so simple right?  it can be the most transformational yet, at the same time, be so darn elusive. but as you go about each day be mindful of your presence, be mindful of your surroundings, be mindful of your thoughts,  be mindful of others.

in this one activity the ordinary we encounter can become the profound.

e.g.  for 5-10 minutes sit and watch a child play.  i mean really watch.  observe how the outside world has little bearing on their interactions with their toys, the dog or a cardboard box.  they are keenly and only aware of themselves and this object that has their attention.

they are more aware in those moments of their intentions and attention but most likely are clueless to this because they don’t have the reasoning capabilities just yet.  as an adult however, you do.  becoming more aware is a skill you can master.

2. let the little things go

things get our goat.  they stick in our craw sometimes.  they try our last bit of patience and, before you know it our energy is sucked dry by something so inconsequential that if you look back you’ll wonder why the thing bothered you so in the 1st place.

let go little bird, let it go.  in choosing to let the small things go you open up all sorts of bigger possibilities { ahhh….. } and allow for more moments of awareness, the kind of awareness that can change your day from bummer gloomy to outright sunshiny & bright or peaceful & content.

for those of us who have not yet made it a practice of letting go { me included sometimes.  shocker right? lol  }, it’s hard to push past that stick-in-craw stuff but …and a BIG but here.

but being concerned with the whys and hows of any given situation, the he said/she saids that go on not to mention all the “crazy” people who you have no control over anyway, all of this is sooo darn counterintuitive to being aware and living a more mindful life.

take a B R E A T H right here.  yes! { plus you’ll miss the darn beauty of those sweet ordinary moments }.

3. create space for extraordinary to happen

by damn this is a good one!

in a nut shell this means Living. In. JOY.   nah…you’re not walking around with a silly happy grin plastered on your face, nor does it mean denying the reality of a situation { sometimes we need to accept and move on people! }.

making space for the extraordinary in your ordinary day means being real with yourself and keeping an open mind despite the crazies that can occur.

if all you ever do is complain or see things from a downward perspective then imagine what you’re telling the Universe.  ick!  instead, be open for the possibility of extraordinary to occur.  and then when it does, smile, say thank you, enjoy your special moment and then tuck it in your pocket { or write it in your journal }.

3 small steps that can bring more awareness to you everyday life.  how brilliant is that!

plus, don’t forget to join the revolution below….the JOURNALING revolution!




Need more help on your journey to extraordinary?  have you tried -ing-ing yet?  whoa! you haven’t??? 

Head over here to download my FREE pdf, "The -Ing Factor", a fun, slap happy way to journal your heartwords or jumpstart your journey using prompts provided for you. Easy right?!

By joining the way cool JOY Love Tribe and becoming a bona fida member you'll get access to all pdf's in the JLT Resource Library including The -Ing Factor! 

jumpstart your journaling habit with the -Ing Factor

this month { march 2016 } we’re celebrating our ordinary days.  not in a big way mind you, just being more aware of the days in our life and being mindful of their extra-ordinary beauty, their quiet stillness and the ease in which we travel thru…with…and in between them.

in this post i introduced the -ing factor.   what pray tell is this?

let me give you the back story first.  in my ordinary days of march post { here } i included a free download to a sheet i designed.....the -ing factor.  why?  because i love words.

wait!  hold on.  

there's more to the story. 

i know many people { men too! } find it hard to open up a book and just begin to journal. i'm constantly told by many that it feels strange to just begin writing cause you don't know what to write about.

Journaling today

a friend who has always struggles with the plain notion of it said journaling is hard because it means you have to slow down and process stuff.  yup, that's the gist of it but, i have to tell you....that's the gracious beauty of a journaling practice.

Journaling is slowing down long enough so that your mind has a chance to catch up & your body has a chance to unwind.
— Grace

journaling brings you to the forefront of your mind, it is a witness to your soul and, before long, it begins to engage your heart, your inner wisdom.

so yes, journaling might seem strange in the beginning but, like any habit, it takes time to work up to the best bits of it....that wonderful process of letting go.

and this is where the -ing factor* comes in.  i wanted to create a simple, easy way for you to begin this creative practice without all the fuss of thinking too much and faltering or { egads! } quitting before you even start.

here comes the helper bit

The -Ing Factor Printable

the -ing factor*is an easy way to work on creating the habit of journaling while at the same time allowing for some journaling release.....release of  stress, release of angst or worry, release of the feelings you tend to keep bottled up inside you.

i can't stress enough....

It is in the release that the power of journaling takes hold and manifests itself so perfectly

with the -ing factor you use present participle words { i know, grammar right but it's all good, trust me } to journal in your book.  words like....

watching ... reading ... planning ... reflecting ... gathering ... journaling

you'll begin each entry by writing a short snippet of a thought or a story, not more than 2, 3 or 4 sentences at first { see example in referenced post above } ....releasing it to your journal.  before long you won't even have to think about what to write.  you'll just know....and do.

and in the days when a release is not as urgent.....the beauty of an ordinary day gets to unfold in your journal.

toodles y'all and let's get to journaling,


*download your free copy of the -ing factorhere.  remember, this is for personal use only and if you want to share it { which i hope you do } please direct them to this page.  thanks!

UPDATE: i've created a resource library for my tribe members ... the JOY Love Tribe { that's you! } where you will not only find the -ing factor pdf but all other free JLT resources —and new ones being added.  enjoy!


the stillness of ordinary days

Stillness of Ordinary Days

some days are just ordinary don't you think?  you wake up, prepare for the day and then you begin. task after task you complete, almost by rote, then another and another as each new day rises up to greet you.

how many of us go thru the same routine...

of waking up, prep for day, work, then home, family/house obligations, only to plop into your bed at the end of the day, totally exhausted with no idea of the activities that made up your day or, for that matter, how these same actions might have contributed to your tiredness or your it's-been-a-good-day feeling?

if you had to think about it...what did you do today, yesterday to appreciate the day?  i'm not talking gratefulness per say { altho being grateful should always be a part of our everyday } but rather, were you aware of the ordinary moments of your day?  i truly believe that without these ordinary moments that make up our day to day, the special ones wouldn't be as special, right?

in this month's newsletter { to sign up for the JOY love tribe news click here} i wrote about the stillness of ordinary days and that's how the month of march got it's theme.  this month we're celebrating our ordinary days.  not in a big way mind you, just being more aware of the days in our life and being mindful of their extra-ordinary beauty, their quiet stillness and the ease in which we travel thru...with...and in between them.

today let's give voice to all those ordinary activities that we probably sometimes take for granted but happen regularly throughout our day.

one of my favourite bloggers { for her extra-ordinary wit and charm of course in being just who she is } cathy zielske writes regularly about it in her present participle know, the -ing list.

what ordinary things can you notice as you move through your day?

those -ings that make up every part of what we do to live our lives.  today, this is what i want you to journal about.  let your journaling take a different avenue ......let's skip on down the -ing road this time.

let me start.

thinking about my girl as she embarks on the first of her many adult adventures. she's away for a whole month on her very 1st business trip.  my heart aches because the letting go completely will be soon upon me, but my heart also smiles cause i know she is ready .....and is about to soar.

pondering next steps for me creatively, adjusting my sails as the year continues to bring new paths to walk.  loving this adventure i asked the Universe for.

processing an event that occurred recently that had me stymied ...and hurt, knowing i deserved better than was given to me.  after letting it stew i see where my misstep happened...ego showed up where trust and intuition should have.  always, always trust my gut.

needing to do more exercise but letting procrastination takeover,  ugh. it will come.  i know that forcing myself to exercise leads me in the total opposite direction after a few days.   trust me, lol.

using my planner more effectively these days makes this girl very, very happy indeed { might have to do a post about what's working for all you planner addicts like me }

so go on.....

Let the ordinary in your day take on a different glow ...maybe even a smattering of wonder
— Grace

toodles y'all



btw....  to make this journaling prompt even easier, i created a free downloadable pdf { access in the JLT member library } with a slap-happy bunch of -ing words so you can start journaling right away.  how fantastic right?

The -Ing Factor Printable
The -Ing Factor Printable