Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny!Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! by Anthony Robbins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was recommended this book to me several years ago by a friend. He was the most positive person I had ever met and I asked him how he was that way. He was going through a divorce and things in his life were quite difficult but he was always happy. He told me that this book transformed his attitude about life.
It has taken me a while to actually sit down and read this book but this was definitely the right time. For many years, I was a wife and mother and all my goals and dreams involved my husband and kid. Five years ago, that all ended and my youngest graduated from high school a couple of years later. I am finally ready to focus on me and my goals again. I don’t think I realized that until I read this book. I have been thinking about goals and dreams now and am making plans. I have broken a lifelong habit of picking my skin. Tomorrow is two weeks since I picked and I actually have not had a hard time in days. I am no longer a picker. I have tried to quit all my life. Quitting smoking was easy compared to this. Suddenly, after reading this book, it has been easy to quit.
I highly recommend this book to anyone that is wanting to make positive changes in their life. I will continue to work on the assignments in the book and continue to grow and follow my new dreams and goals.

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Life has been a bit busy and crazy for the past few weeks. I thought about blogging many times and about many things BUT just have not been taking the time. I have 24 more hours with my son home and I have been enjoying every moment we have had together. I also have been doing a lot of reading and self reflection. One of the first guys I dated after my divorce was the most positive person that I have ever met. I asked him how he could always be so positive and he told me that it was because of this book by Tony Robbins that he read.

I have finally been reading this book after almost four years. I will go into it a bit in a later blog but I wanted to share one major thing that I have realized. I am GLAD that I have been alone mostly for the past five years. It has enabled me to grow. It has enabled me to learn who I really am. Time (and this book) have given me the ambition to set goals again. My life had been, for so long, all about our kids, our marriage, his career. Our kids are grown, our marriage is over and his career doesn’t affect me anymore. I have not been focusing on goals for years now. If I had stayed in the relationship with BFF or gotten serious with someone else, my focus would have become on them, their wishes, their lives, etc. This has been a great time of growth for ME and maybe, eventually, I will be able to let someone back in that fits into MY GOALS. I truly love myself and enjoy my own company. I am setting my own goals and have my own dreams now all because I have taken the time to get to know me- post marriage.

A Woman on the Edge of Time: a son's search for his motherA Woman on the Edge of Time: a son’s search for his mother by Jeremy Gavron
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I picked this book up at a book rescue not knowing much about it but it definitely drew me to it. The speed in which I read it says something. I did not want to put this book down. Hannah was such a strong woman and so ahead of her time. It made me think of being a woman before now. My grandmother was also ahead of her time. I often thought about my mother who was in the same age group as Hannah. Women were expected to be a certain way and women who chose not to had a difficult road. Unfortunately, Hannah ultimately couldn’t handle it and took her life. She left two young boys and a family that never spoke of her again. This is written by the younger of the boys as he tries to understand his mother and her choice. This book also made me proud of my daughters who are in no hurry to marry and have babies. They are living their lives before they go down this path, if they choose that path I sure wish that I had done so. Hannah’s thesis that was later published is The Captive Wife. I wonder how many of us feel the way this book implies. I think Ii will have to find it and read it. I know I can probably relate. I gave up my life for the “dream” and it was a mistake. Now I am alone, poor, and fifty, trying to figure out how to live my dreams. I will make it as I have made it this far. This book is worth the read. It is not anti-man. It is not anti-marriage. It is more about having the strength to follow your dreams. The women back then had so many more obstacles than we do now. It has improved but many are still there due to our gender. We need to continue to change things for our daughters and granddaughter.

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So many of my male friends are shocked by the #metoo stories and how many women they know with stories. Somany of them are asking what they can or should do, this is a good read regarding this.

 

#MeToo testimonies are flooding our social media feeds. For men, realizing complicity can be uncomfortable. On seeing this discomfort as a challenge.

Source: For Guys Reading #MeToo Testimonies — Courtney Martin | On Being

As I walk the streets everyday, I have lots of things go through my mind. I don’t know why yesterday my reflection seemed to be how much I’ve grown. On Facebook, you can see your “on this day” in the past. I tend to look at these daily. Some are good, some are bad, many make me really see how far that I have come.  As I’m looking at these from four years ago, right after my divorce, I was struggling to eat, get out of bed, to go to work. I had done most of my crying before the divorce was final but I was terrified of being on my own.  I had grown so dependent on the ex because he thought he did everything better than me. I had quit trying to do things because it was easier to let him do things than to be criticized for doing things wrong. My self-confidence was in the toilet.  I never thought I could get a decent job because I gave up my career when I got married.  I never went back to college. I was a full-time at home mom for a long time. I loved being home with my kids.  I love the relationship I have with them now, probably due to that but I will always regret giving up my career.

Here I am four years later, I am feeling happier and  more self confident than I’ve ever felt in my life. I think when I first started dating that I was looking for somebody to take care of me. I no longer want nor need that. I’ve had men tell me that I was too strong and independent for them. Who would have thought that would be an issue for me four years ago. I don’t want a man that can’t handle my independence, that can’t handle my strength, that wants to be the man and take care of everything. I will never give up my independence again.  Now I’ve met a new man, the ice cream man, and he seems to really like my strength. I told him about other men saying I was too strong and independent. He said that he doesn’t see that. He likes it.

I have been spending a bit of time with ex-bf/bff  lately. It has been so nice to have time with him alone. I have missed talking to him so much. I have mentioned that he and his girlfriend broke up the beginning of July and he also lost his dog the same week. I was worried about him for a bit but he seems to be doing well now. He has been going to some personal growth retreats and he is really working on getting over his baggage. I sure hope that someday he can truly find happiness with himself so he can find it with somebody else. I will always love him but, unfortunately, I cannot go back to him, even if he asked. We did fool around on my birthday. It was nice to be back in his arms and kiss him again. It would  have been easy to open my heart back to him but I refuse to. As I have said before, I believe that love is a choice. I won’t give my heart back to him at this point and I have told him that. I choose not to love him like that again unless he is ready to let me in. Even then, it would not be a given. I would have to really think about it. He would have to earn me back.  I love how honest we are with each other. I love that I can tell him these things and he tells me that he still worries about hurting me when he is with someone else.

Last weekend, we went on a hike to a natural hot springs. Yes, we soaked naked. It was so nice sitting next in the hot springs with the cold river flowing by.  We have talked so much about our growth since we split up. I know the things he has done and he asked me what I have done. He also thinks that some of what I say is just words because I still occasionally say that I want a man. I have explained to him that those times are actually few anymore. I like my space. I love my freedom. So many times, I hear couples on the street and think to myself how glad I am not to be in a relationship. Even as few as a few months ago, I would sometimes get sad when I saw a couple holding hands walking down the street. Now, I really feel nothing. Not anger and pity, like I felt right after my divorce. I was such a cynic and was sure that they were all making a mistake in trusting and loving. I also, not longer feel sad because I am alone. I feel happy for them and hope it lasts. I do sometimes wonder if I will ever find that BUT it is truly not a concern anymore.

So, what have I done to grow? I have been thinking about that since he asked. One is that I spend so much time alone that I can think. Most of my workday, I spend thinking about my life and reflecting. I also blog here. This is so good for me. Not only is it journaling but I get feedback and see my feelings are normal and others feel the same way. I read LOTS of books and blogs. I am exercising not just at work but weight lifting again. I have loved that since I was a teen and haven’t done for years. I love how it makes me feel mentally and physically.  I am also spending more time with friends and reconnecting with people. My birthday helped with that. When you are content with your life and yourself, a partner becomes less important.

One of the things that I thought about the other day is WHY am  I so content alone right now? Of course, there is the standard, I can do what I want, when I want, without anyone having any say or worrying about being criticized for my choices and feelings as I did for years. My big AHA moment came the other day though. I had been dwelling on this for days and it just popped into my head. For the first time in my life, I am taking care of ME only. I am 50 years old and don’t need to take care of anyone but me and my puppies. Of course, I am still here for my kids but I am my priority for the first time. It is such a free feeling. I can go hike with my ex-bf, get naked and sit in a hot spring. I can go have beer with a friend. I can sit on my couch naked and blog. I can go to bed at 7 or at midnight. I can have ice cream for breakfast or dinner, if I choose. I am fifty years old and feel better physically and mentally than I did at 35. I am healthier. I am fit. I am sexy. I am beautiful and strong. I am independent. I am not lonely at all. I plan to continue growing and getting better with age. We all should.

http://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2016/06/my-world-would-be-so-different-if-you-were-still-alive/