3 Ways To Increase Your Happiness…NOW!

 

Happy Saturday Sistas,

Because our society has taught us an “I want this and I want that” mentality, our level of happiness can easily be destroyed. If you’ve been on this planet for very long, you have learned that the “getting” of these things is only a temporary thrill. So, why do we put ourselves through this happiness-depleting and joy-sucking misery of want, want, want. Is it because our friends have the latest handbag or because that commercial told us our lives would be better with that product or we are simply trying to fill a void in our life with “things”? Last year, I recommended a great documentary to help us put this in perspective called Happy on Netflix. It’s a great idea to watch this a few times a year. Just sayin’. 

A large aspect to my blog & webseries is helping/teaching women how to increase their joy by removing old ways of thinking that prevent them from living their most vibrant life. Hello, SOS! Wikipedia’s definition of SOS is “an international code signal of extreme distress or an urgent appeal for help”.

If you are in a state of “SOS” regarding your level of happiness, try these things NOW:

Unchain_my_heart_by_Cindaretta[Photo by Cinderatta]

I. OPEN YOUR HEART: I don’t think we realize how much we guard our heart or close it off because of past pains. You may have forgiven that person who hurt you, but you are still walking around with a closed heart. It could also be described as ‘living with walls up’. I did this for SO many years and I was miserable. Many of us starting living a guarded life as a young child. That was me and I can remember people saying, “you are such a pretty girl, you should smile more”. As I grew into a young woman, I just learned to wear a mask to appear happy. I could be whatever  you needed me to be. It took years to heal, but I am grateful to say — I live life much more open hearted now. If this is you, remove the armor around your heart by letting God’s love in. As His love floods your heart it will melt any armor, chains or walls. Then you are FREE to let love flow in and out of you. Talk about raising your level of happiness. Holla!  

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II. HANG OUT WITH SOMEONE WHO “GETS YOU”: Do you notice how crap you feel after hanging out with certain friends? You cant quite put your finger on it, but you leave their presence with a sense of unhappiness or unfulfillment. It’s that friend or family member who asks how you’re doing with that shallow and robotic vibe about them. When you answer, they have this glazed over look in their eyes.  They don’t “get” you, your lifestyle, mission or project. Go ahead and punch me in the gut why don’t you? Lord help me, I limit my time with these types of people now. If you are surrounded by dream crushers, seek out that friend or family member who embraces YOU just as you are with all your crazy passions and quirks. 

My sister just arrived to Texas and we will have our first family vacay in over 25 years next weekend. I am bursting with joy and happiness as I look forward to having quality time with her. She and I have had our years of squabbling, as most sisters do, but at the end of the day — we “get” each other. We both strut to the beat of our own drum, are pretty quirky and totally untraditional. I don’t have to guard my heart or wear a mask in her presence. WooHoo! 

thelma-and-louise

III. SING AT THE TOP OF YOUR LUNGS IN THE CAR: Have a “Thelma & Louise” moment minus the driving off the cliff scene! It is a scientific fact that singing loudly releases endorphins, our “feel good” chemicals. Singing on a regular basis could actually lengthen your life. One of my favorite things to do is drive fast down the freeway by myself with a great song (like anything by Miranda Lambert) cranked up and singing like a crazy lady — I don’t care how out of tune I am!

Feeling low today? Go jump in the car with your iPod or your fave CD and take a cruise by yourself or pick up your bestie who likes to be a crazy lady with you. I promise, you will feel happier sista! My longtime friend and soul sister, LeeAnne Locken, have been doing this for nearly 30 years. You should hear us sing Stone Temple Pilots…or maybe not. Hahaha! We’ve had many “Thelma & Louise” moments over the years. If you need daily inspiration, make sure to subscribe to her blog, Inspiration by LeeAnne Locken.

Join me in wishing LeeAnne a very happy & blessed birthday today! I’m grateful for the many years acting like crazy ladies together. She gets me! 

LeeAnne_madhatters[LeeAnne & I at this years Mad Hatter’s Luncheon]

What’s your go-to happy activity?

Open your heart, go grab a friend who you can be a crazy lady with and ya’ll sing Miranda Lambert at the top of your lungs. Just writing that out made me happier:-) 

Love, Tiff

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MOM’S ROCK!

Mothers_day

Honoring all of you beautiful Mother’s today!

As you look at your children smile and laugh today, revel in your amazing accomplishment.  Enjoy the day because YOU ROCK!  I am where I am today because of my Mama’s consistent prayers, love, example, belief and support.  She always told my sister and I we could do and be whatever we dreamed of!   I’m so grateful for her.  They say your mom is your very first friend then my baby sister came along 4 1/2 years later.  No matter what girlfriends come in and out of your life– family is the foundation of our lives.

She is WOMAN.
She is Mother. Daughter. Wife. Sister.
She is a Person.
She is Strong, Smart, Crafty.
She is Passionate, Courageous, Generous.
Cooking barefoot is only one of several superpowers.
She is Action, Emotion, Devotion.
She has Hope, Beauty, Power.
She has a Brain and she knows how to use it.
She Gives You LIFE.
She gives you RESPECT, LOVE, GRATITUDE.
She believes in you.
She will nurture you, fight for you.
She deserves nothing less from you.

{anonymous}

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{Southern girls loving quality time in the kitchen! With my mom, Rocki- and sister, Natalie}

 

I also wanted to share this wonderful Wholehearted Living Parenting Manifesto” from Brene Brown.   Download for FREE on her site!  It’s beautiful– not only for families, but for any groups or mentoring situations.  Be blessed! 

Love, Tiff

 

This post was brought to you by Indo Salon.  Indo specializes in Cuts, Styles, Haircolor, Highlights, Great Length Extensions, Hair Lingerie, Japanese Thermal Straightening, Brazillian Blowout and Eyebrow Tinting.

 

STRESS-FREE GIFT GIVING + VIDEO REPLAY {Plus Sunday Eve Affirmations}

gift_giving

“It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”  ― Mother Teresa

Who’s loving the festive season?  Who’s getting totally stressed out from it all?  With all the holiday parties to attend, one too many swipes of the credit card, scouring the stores for THE perfect gifts and the anxiety of spending time with that family member who just– to put it plain + simple— gets on your last nerve….. the sparkle, magic and beauty of the holidays can turn into a depressing, stressful and lackluster occasion.  Don’t let that happen sistas!

We’re wrapping up a big year and that alone is reason to celebrate.  In the remaining weeks of December, let’s sloooooow down.  Remember the reason for the season.  Has ‘gift giving’ turned into more of a commercialized expectation between you and your family and friends, rather than a genuine token of love and appreciation?  Has it become normal for you to start the New Year with maxed out credit cards?   Please take that pressure off yourself!  Some of the most meaningful gifts are the ones that cost very little, but had so much thought put into them.  Giving your time and attention to someone who gets very little of it throughout the year can be the best gift you could ever give them and it’s FREE! 

Trust me, I love shopping for the important people in my life!  It’s so fun to find that perfect, unique gift you just know will bring a big smile to their face and twinkle in their eye.   It’s a win-win.  The giver feels good and so does the receiver!   But, say you had a rough year financially….PLEASE communicate that with your family + friends.  It may bruise your pride and ego, but you’ll get over it.  That brief sting is better than the long-term pain of paying off the credit card interest throughout the coming year.   There are so many low cost options these days.  Get creative.   Also, many people feel if you buy them a gift then they’re obligated to reciprocate with a gift of an equal amount.  WHY?  This is just another way we suck the love, joy and beauty out of the season.  If you find that perfect gift for a friend, give it without expecting anything in return.  That is true giving.  

In the week ahead, I WILL…..

  1. Stick to my gift budget without running up my credit cards.
  2. Not feel guilty about declining a social invitation.
  3. Be present in the moment. This special holiday only happens once a year.
  4. Not allow that ‘certain’ family member to steal my joy.
  5. Slow down.
  6. Enjoy the cookies, candy and hot toddy in moderation.
  7. Respect others traditions, but will start a few of my own.
  8. Rock the red lip, red heel, red dress or all three.
  9. Give a deserving person my time and attention.
  10. Not neglect my workouts because it’s an instant stress buster.
  11. Give without expectation!

Need a few gift ideas for the fashionista or the foodie in your life?  Check out this video replay:

 

I would love to hear your thoughts and two-cents on the topic of gift giving.   Each and every comment is appreciated!   Do you have a great holiday stress-reliever?  Share it sista!

We have (2) more weeks of Stocking Stuffer Giveaways!  Don’t miss out.  Make sure to check in on the FACEBOOK PAGE during the week.  You must be a subscriber to this blog, part of the Facebook Community and make at least (1) comment during the giveaway week!  Winner will be announced on Friday.  BIG CONGRATS to last week’s winner, Colleen Campbell-Voigt!

Happy Hanakkuh to those of you celebrating!

Wishing you a week full of twinkly lights + sparkly sequin!

Love, Tiff

NEW WEEK, NEW BEGINNING

Hey Style Sista’s!

How was your weekend? I was fortunate to spend a few fun girlie days with my precious mom and my love tank is full. Nothing like mother-daughter quality time, right! We did our fave things…shopping and eating Mexican food. We had some great convo’s which prompted me to share my thoughts on this video:

 

WHAT ARE THOUGHTS ON THIS SUBJECT?

Did it inspire you? Maybe it got you thinking about some changes you need to make? I would love to hear your thoughts.

The beauty of Sunday evenings is we have just one more sleep before the beginning of the new week. I don’t know about you, but it’s exciting to me! We get a clean slate….a brand new week to do things better. To do things bigger. To try new things. A whole seven days of new opportunities! I encourage you this week to start making a list of projects you want to dust off and work on, dreams that seem to be dead and buried and places you want to see.  I realize this is a bit of a repeat of last week’s blog post, but I believe it is vital to a woman’s livelihood.

{I’m getting out the brushes this week…if it’s the only thing I do}

Don’t forget to post + play on the SOS FACEBOOK PAGE to participate in the fabulous summer swag bag giveaways happening every week! To enter, you must be a subscriber to this blog, like the facebook page and join in on the fun convo’s.  Make sure to tell your girlfriends about it too!

With love + grace,

Tiff

Daddy

Happy Friday Fabulous Fashionistas!

Do you still call your dad “Daddy” even as a grown woman?  I do.  It’s a term of endearment that I will never outgrow.  I can’t say that it was always an endearing term for me and I am sure there are many of you that understand where I’m coming from.  With Father’s Day approaching and searching for that perfect card, I always find myself frustrated and a bit sad in the middle of the card aisle at the local drugstore. WHO FEELS ME?  Many cards have such eloquent sentiments describing the Dream Dad.  Does he exist?  If you grew up with a wonderful dad, high five! You were very fortunate. My dad was a great provider and kept a comfortable roof over our heads, food on the table and clothes on our backs– I remember the Christmas he spoiled me rotten with my first pair of Jordache Jeans and a hot pink Huffy tenspeed.  He was fantastic at that sort of stuff, BUT…. he had a tough, angry spirit like his own father and was emotionally unavailable.  His words cut deep and those words will mold a young girl in the wrong way.  They’re like bad seeds that take root and create weeds in a fertile young mind.  Like many of our dads, he became a father too young (age 21) and did the best that he knew how!  Now that I’m grown, I clearly see this fact and have forgiven him.  I had to do the grueling inner work to overcome, remove the weeds and learn true forgiveness.  A large part of that process was allowing God’s love into my life.  Realizing how much God– my Heavenly Father– loved me… started the serious healing from any wounds or weeds inflicted by my biological father.  We have a much better relationship and I have a new found respect for him. I know God has worked on him too and he has a much gentler and sweet spirit now!

Happy Daddy’s Day to Glen Bolton

{{If you have been following my blog for some time, you realize that I am a Spiritual person and open about my Faith in God, but I will never shove my concepts and beliefs down anyone’s throat.  A large part of SOS is about TRANSFORMATION and I would not be authentic if I did not share how the biggest reason and path to my own transformation was through God’s love and healing in my life.}}

So I leave you with this…if Father’s Day is also a sensitive time for you I want to remind you that no matter what your bio father did or did not do, your Heavenly Father sees you as perfect and beautiful. YOU are the apple of His eye!  He wants the best for you, to see you living your dreams, shining like the star that you are, successful, prosperous and plain ol’ HAPPY!  Also, if your Daddy has passed away and this holiday is difficult for you in that regard, I send you loving thoughts and may the fond memories you shared with your Father bring you peace and joy this weekend.

 

With love,

Tiff

 

P.S. Remember all summer long we have some fantastic sponsors for our summer giveaways!  Make sure to check-in on the SOS FACEBOOK PAGE and join in on the conversations. Random commenters will be chosen each week to win a prize. The only requirement is that you are both a blog subbie and a FB page follower.

Meet the Fabulous Teri Chadwick Edwards! Winner of the SOS Beach Bag Giveaway

I was so thrilled to see Teri’s name drawn as our winner!  She has been a supporter of SOS since the very beginning and encouraged me through that long process I went through for the Oprah Show finals last year.  

Introducing…TERI CHADWICK EDWARDS!

1. Tell us a lil about yourself.   Im a mom, wife, and part time personal trainer.
2.  Who/what inspires you? All of my clients that lose so much weight. – I know they are dedicated -they look at me w/ that Eye of the Tiger and say BRING IT T!  Im kind of a “Jillian” -I have no problem yelling and screaming at them -because I know they can do it , they just need  a push and someone to believe in them!  After the tears or sick feeling – I give them a big hug cause I know they gave me 100%…thats all I ask – and thats w/ my boys also.
3. How would you describe your personal style?  Mostly  “mom wear”  or gym clothes -but when I do go out w/ the girls -I love to dress GIRLY- High heels etc. 


4. As a busy mom, how do you add a bit of glamour to your life everyday?  Being a busy mom the only thing I can do is mascara, eyeliner and  pink Mac lipstick – Per my twitter name – PinkandPainmom.
5. A quote or motto you live by?  My favorite quote is one I taught my 3 boys-NEVER BACK DOWN!

A BIG CONGRATS TERI!  Thank you for your support and for being an inspiration to us all! 

Sharing the love, beauty + inspiration, Tiff

WHAT ARE YOU GRATEFUL FOR TODAY?

Sorry there’s no beauty tip or fashion fauz pas to discuss today!  My heart and thoughts are focused on the devastation in the South.   The awesome thing about having a blog is that you can use it to share your expertise and info with others as well as some self-indulgent mind-spewing! 

So bear with me,  I’m in the mood to spew…

Finally the media has shifted from all the hype surrounding the Royal Wedding (‘m SO over it..yawwwn) to more important events like the crazy massive tornadoes that have wrecked havoc on the South.    It really humbled me this morning because yesterday I was in a funky mood–you know that “mood” you find yourself in for no apparent reason– it’s not PMS, nothing has pissed you off, you got a decent nights sleep–yet, you feel like your heads about to explode and the littlest things just grate on your last nerve (like the sound of your lawn guy’s weed-eater…buzzzzzzzzzzzzz).   You go through your list of positive affirmations…give it to God…cast your cares–and the more you try to ‘SNAP OUT OF IT’, the more agro you become!

Thank you CNN– for being the catalyst to help me get out of my 24 hour bubble of ME-itis.   This morning as I was having my first cup of joe (that my wonderful hubby brought to me in bed..yes, I know–he’s beyond amazing) we were trying to find a news channel that was NOT talking about that dang wedding on the other side of the pond.   I mean seriously, if I see that 2nd kiss on the balcony one more time I think I’m gonna puke!   Luckily, CNN was covering the devastation in Alabama.  The death toll is over 340 now.  They interviewed a woman who could not reach her mother for 48 hours.  Now, can you personally imagine yourself living in that terror for a whole 2 days???   

Wondering..

Is my mom hurt?  Dead?   Stuck underneath pieces of her home and belongings?   Is she safe and warm?  Has anyone helped her?  Is she hungry?   You know how powerful our minds are!?   Thank God her mother was rescued and staying with a sweet neighbor.  Unfortunately, many people do not have the same happy ending.

With the recent catastrophic events in Japan and now this…how do you think, feel, react?

Does it put things into perspective?

Do you stay in your comfy little bubble of a life and try not to think about it?

Does it draw you closer to something bigger outside of yourself?  God?

Do you feel an immense feeling of gratitude?

Wikipedia says:   Gratitude is thankfulness or appreciation.   A positive emotion or attitude in acknowledgment of a benefit that one has received or will receive.

Whatever you are going through today– and we are ALL dealing with something— take a moment to GIVE GRATITUDE that you are alive!   You’re here!  You’re breathing!   You have eyes to read this post right now!

Thank you for hearing me out!    If you have time this weekend, let’s join together and light a candle and say a prayer for those effected by the tornadoes. 

Gratefully~  Tiff