Love the Process

IMG_0375

Here is the thing with finding your passion. In order for it to truly be your passion you have to love the process of making it happen. I think about the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness” and how that man was hell bent on becoming a stock broker. He wanted to be a stock broker because he wanted to make a boat load of money…which he did. But did it bring him happiness? Did he enjoy being a stock broker? Did he enjoy the process of becoming a stock broker?

When it comes to figuring out what it is you consider your passion it has to be something you love doing….even if it will never take you anywhere other than personal fulfillment. Do you want to take your culinary skills to the next level and open a restaurant? Then you will have to love the process of opening the restaurant and doing the work everyday to get it open and fulfilling those food orders. You can hire people to help you with the business aspect and all that but you have to love what you are doing or you will lose momentum and focus.

Or is it something more simple like starting a workout routine? Then create a plan that you like. I don’t enjoy running or even power walking. But I do love to bike ride and kayak and I do that often. If I made a plan that included all walking and running I would never do it. You could say my passion is to look good and be healthy but I’m never going to get there by running and walking. There are all types of physical activity. Tennis, golf, bowling….you name it. It doesn’t always get your heart rate up and considered cardio activity but if it gets you moving then you are heading in the right direction.

When it comes to myself…this blog and podcast is so rewarding for me. I love writing and recording everyday. I was devastated when I lost my morning co-host job so the podcast is a way for me to get a little of that in everyday. I am also so enthusiastic about getting my message across to as many people as possible. I am truly a reformed pessimist. My life in the past year has been so much better than most of the years of my life. I know how I made the change and I want to help you do it too. It takes some work but it’s so worth it. I have become one of those annoying people who are happy about everything and truly finds joy in everyday little things. And I KNOW you can be that annoying person too. I love my new annoying self…she is awesome! Does everyone think I’m awesome? Probably not. You know what? I don’t care! I love me and I’m doing me. As you should be doing you and not caring what anyone else thinks. You are the only one who spends 24 hours a day with you and YOU are the only one who can and should make your life the best it can possibly be.

So, it seems I’ve gotten off course as usual. My point is…I am loving the process of building this business. I am loving the work it takes to get things done everyday. I love the writing, I love the recording, I love the research for stories and topics. I don’t love the technical aspect and needing to learn more about the business aspect but I love the meaning behind what I’m doing and it’s worth it to dive into the things that I am uncomfortable with in order to get my message to as many people as I can. My end goal is to make this into a business and make some money. I want this to be my full time job. It will most definitely take time and money before that starts happening. It will take research and going into territory unknown to me. But even more than all that, my true passion is getting my message across. I want to turn every pessimist into a hopefulist. I want hopefulist to become a word that doesn’t come up as a misspelling when I type it. I want everyone to know what it means! And I 100% know I’m going to get to my goal. I’m not sure how yet but I know it will happen. I’m passionate about it! It is MY passion.

Have you put some thought into your passion this week? Did I help you at all figure out what it is that may light you up? Do you need to think about it some more? Do a little more exploring? Keep in mind we are usually good at things we are passionate about. What are you already good at? How much do you like it? Can you squeeze some more of it into your life? Put some thought into it. Figure out what you need to do in order to bring more of it into your life. Do the work it takes to get you where you want to go. It won’t be easy but I promise you it will be worth it.

Now, go have a cocktail…it’s cocktail Friday peeps!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp #passion

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Mindfulness

IMG_0636

Pretty deep quote, huh? It’s so true. We have a lot of idea’s about ourselves that don’t necessarily come from us. Are you an accountant because that is what your parents wanted you to do for a living? Are you trying to find a spouse to settle down and have a family with because that is what you were brought up believing that is what you do? Is that what you TRULY want or only what is expected of you?

I was single for a long time. I didn’t get married until I was 40 and then children just never happened for us. I was well aware this was likely to be the case since I was older. I would have loved to have children but I never wanted to do it alone. My sister had decided at one point in her life that she was going to have a child even if she didn’t marry. She felt the calling to be a mom that strongly. I applaud her for making that decision. She did end up getting married and having two amazing daughters and gained two awesome stepdaughters as well. I just didn’t want to go that route. So I didn’t pursue the kid thing and now it’s too late. It’s okay….we are happy with our life the way it is (but who the hell is going to take care of us in our old age????).┬áBut what I wanted to get across is the whole time I was single I felt like such a loser. The spinster that still followed her mother around to all the family events where I was most sensitive to my singleness. Why did I feel so bad about it? Because society dictated that I should be married and planning a family by a certain age. Any woman who was still single over the age of 30 knows exactly what I’m talking about. But is it something that you really feel is lacking in your life? You….is that what YOU think..not your mom or your aunt or your co-workers. I wish I could have shaken that whole “caring what people thought” thing back then. I probably would have been much happier sooner.

I mentioned yesterday to think back to what you enjoyed as a child. This is when we are most ourselves. It’s before the seeds of judgement get planted in us and we do what we think is super fun. Are there certain books you were attracted to? Do you know what it was that you liked so much about them? Did you love to build things with blocks or make lego houses? Maybe you want to build things or create things. Give it some thought.

But the most important thing that will lead you to your passion is mindfulness. It’s not only great for finding your passion but for enjoying your life overall. I’ve been hearing about mindful eating all my life. I have read just about every diet book there is out there and they all said…be mindful of the food you put in your mouth. It’s true but so hard to do for some reason. When you go to your favorite restaurant and order your favorite dish are really enjoying the meal? I know the first couple of bites you are like….OMG, this is heaven. But do you pay attention to the rest of the bites? Savor every one. Focus on that meal and the delicious food you are indulging in. We love the first couple of bites but then take the rest for granted. Savor each and every morsel.

It’s really the same with everything in your life. How often do you really taste your coffee in the morning? Don’t you really just kind of swig it down because that is your habit. Take the time to really taste it this morning. Especially when it is at that perfect temperature. Hold the mug and let it warm your hands. Experience the cup of coffee. It makes the process so much more enjoyable.

What is the part of the day you look forward to most? Is there an aspect of your job that you enjoy more than your other duties? Is there a way you can find a position that will allow you to do more of that and less of the parts you don’t like? Be mindful of the activities you enjoy during the day. We tend to focus on what we don’t like but really pay attention to what you do like…or even what you “don’t mind”. This will lead you to figuring out what you love to do.

Is lunch the favorite part of your day? Maybe you want to go out to eat more often to experiment with different dishes. Is it cooking when you get home? Is there a way you can do more cooking? Baking? Bake up a storm and pass out your treats to family, friends, co-workers and neighbors. I bet you will have a lot of new best friends. There is always a way to do more of what you love once you figure out what it is. Be mindful of what lights you up. Just pay attention to what you enjoy throughout the day instead of what you don’t. Stop taking your life for granted and living in a way that has you just getting through the day. Are we just trying to get safely to our deaths? Life is intended to be enjoyed…every single day of it. I know everyone has bad days but once you find your passion and do more of it…you will enjoy more and more days of your life. Stop waiting for the weekends. There are only two days in a weekend. I want you to enjoy all 7 days of the week in your life!

Hope you have a wonderful “I wish it were cocktail Friday” Thursday! Talk to you tomorrow….now go make it your best day yet!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp #passion

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

The Starting Point

IMG_0647

Still feeling stuck when it comes to figuring out what you love? Take some time and sit quietly with no distractions. Just let you mind wander to some of your favorite times in your life. Were you on an adventure? Taking a trip? Working on a project? Or are you happiest just being with your family and taking care of them?

Whatever it is…you can find more ways to do it. And you need to do it as often as humanly possible. This is how you find your joy and live in bliss. I love the word bliss. It just represents the ultimate in happiness to me. In fact, when I am sitting out on my deck soaking up the sun and a neighbor powers up a tool of some kind, starts their boat and guns the engine a bunch of times or there is construction on a house near by I always complain to my husband by saying…they are destroying my bliss!

Think back to your childhood. Is there something you did back then that was so much fun? Maybe you were into dancing. You can still go out dancing at places all over if that is what you enjoy. There doesn’t have to be a point other than for your own enjoyment. Go see live music. Maybe try writing some music. Don’t know how? Then learn! Or just write some lyrics and see if someone can help you set it to music. It’s all for fun and your enjoyment. Who cares if nothing ever comes out of it. It’s the process of creating and enjoying the ride that matters.

I know the above says to disconnect from social media but that can be a great tool in finding what makes you light up. Pay attention to what your friends are doing. Are they posting pictures of themselves having the best time? More than likely, yes. What are they doing? Is it something you can try? Is it something you already know you love but don’t do it nearly often enough?

Are your friends hitting the shore every weekend in the summer? Is that something you could join in on? Can you find a rental for you and your family for a good chunk in the summer? Can you go in on a rental with another family? Can you get a group of friends together to go in on a house?

Do you see people playing tennis? Is this something that interests you? Grab a racket and find someone to bat a ball around with. They just put a pickle ball court in our neighborhood and people are excited! I’m not sure what it’s all about yet but I’m definitely interested and want to start playing. Maybe I will hate it. There is only one way to find out.

Do you love to cook and experiment with new dishes? I’m sure you can find a lot of people to test out those new recipes. Is it something even simpler like loving coffee? There are so many flavors and strengths…get yourself a variety pack of all different blends and see which one you like the most. And then stock up on it. Drink it everyday! Or save it for the weekends as a special treat.

Do you love flowers like I do? Then go out and get some of the prettiest ones you see. Bring them home and nourish them and help them grow to the best, most beautiful flowers you have ever seen. Do you like freshly grown vegetables? Then grow those too. I am on my fifth year trying to grow my own tomatoes. I will figure out what I am doing wrong one of these years and will have a wonderful bounty of tomatoes. I want to be the person in the neighborhood where I have so many…I supply all the neighbors with what they need as well. Hopefully this will be the year. I added basil to my garden this year. So far, so good.

Just keep searching for what brings you joy. And then do it as often as you can. And once you find something don’t stop looking for new things. We are always changing and so are our interests. You can lose interest in something and pick up something new. I encourage it. Find as many things as possible to be interested in. The more you do what you love the more you love your life!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp #passion

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Finding your Passion

IMG_0708

I’ve talked a lot about finding and living your passion in order to live your best life. I’ve been pretty lucky in this sense as I’ve worked in a field that I consider my passion most of my life. I realize that not everyone can do their passion and make a living at it (well, you really can but it may be a tough, long road) but you can find things to enjoy in your everyday life. Things that will add to your life and make you look forward to waking up everyday. But you have to make time for them.

Are you completely clueless as to what you would call your passion? No idea what you can do that will bring you joy and light you up? Just give it a little thought. It doesn’t have to be anything as major as a career…it can be anything that you like to do. Do you love spending time at school helping to organize and chaperone events for your children’s class? Then do as much of it as you can. Volunteer as often as your schedule allows. And see what else you can do on a regular basis. Maybe you would be great at organizing children’s parties.

A few years back I had a group of friends that I got together with twice a week to shoot pool. I sucked at pool but it was so nice to have something to look forward to every week. It was all about the social aspect for me but the guys I played the game with were very serious. They loved the game and they loved to win. My one friend used to sit at home and watch pool on t-v to learn new shots and how to improve. I would say that was one of his passions. And he was really good.

My sister runs and does triathlons. I’m not sure how she got started but once she started she just kept doing more and more. Now she is registered for an Iron Man and training to tackle that huge feat. She said she loves challenging herself. Good for her! Definitely not my passion.

A friend of mine is very artsy. She collects boards and pieces of old fence and then paints them. She helped me (she really did most of it) do a sign I wanted for my house. It’s a passion of hers and she loves to do it.

If you’re not sure then think about what interests you. Do you love to take pictures? Then get out there and take as many shots as you can. Start playing with different angles and subjects…develop a good eye. This is something that could definitely turn into a source of income at some point.

I’ve been wanting to go horseback riding for years. I just never get around to it because I’m not sure where to go and how long it takes to get there. And honestly I’m a little bit afraid and they say horses can sense that. But I don’t know what I’m waiting for. I really just need to find a place and go! Will it turn into a passion? Who knows…there is only one way to find out.

Just think about what you like to do. What is it that you look forward to on the weekends or after work? Watching television does not count! Is it spending time with your dog? Can you do more of that? Walk them more often? Play with them more often? Do you think you would enjoy spending time with more dogs? Maybe volunteer at an animal shelter? Offer to walk some of your friends dogs? There are ways to bring more of what you love into your life. You just have to look for it.

And of course reading books is a great way to find new interests. Just seeing what others like to do can give you ideas on things to try. There are a million different things to do everyday. I’m sure you can find something if you look. Good luck. Figure it out and then get out there and start doing it as often as you can. And watch your life become more joyful and meaningful. It really works like that. I promise.

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Wanting More!

IMG_0421

It has taken me decades to start thinking and living in a more positive way. The path of leaving my negative thoughts and behavior to becoming “The Hopefulist” has taken my whole life. I’ve read the books, I’ve watched the shows, I’ve made the vision boards and did the work to figure out what was holding me back. I’ve listened to the music that would uplift me and motivate me. And that is what I want to focus on today.

I was already a much happier person than I used to be. I had my dream house, a wonderful husband, a job that I loved and I had started a career in writing. One morning I was driving to work and I heard a song on a Top 40 station that sounded very familiar to me. I could tell it was sung by Pink (my fellow Philly home girl) but it reminded me of something I had heard in a Disney movie. So I looked it up when I got to work and turns out it was in the movie “The Greatest Showman” and was sung by Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams. Ah yes, I saw that movie (and loved it) so that is where I know it from. Apparently Pink loved this song and movie so much she wanted to do her own version of it.

I’ve talked about this song before. In fact, I wrote my very first blog post about this song. The lyrics are so amazing. I’m assuming it was written with P. T. Barnum in mind and his dream of bringing a whole new world of entertainment to the masses. The words talk about how a million dreams are keeping him up at night. How he sees a different world when he closes his eyes….one, no one has ever seen before. That people may call him crazy but he doesn’t care…he wants to live in a world he designs. The words are very literal for Barnum as he did create a world that no one had ever seen before but it can applied to everyone’s life. If you are striving for more…for a different type of life. Go ahead…design it, then make it happen.

This song inspired me so much. As I listened to the lyrics I thought….hell, yeah! I want to live in a world that I design. No more just getting by. I’m happy and grateful for where I am in life but I want more…I want it all. And this song made me realize I can have it all. If Barnum did it…why can’t I…or you? I don’t want to start a circus but I have my own dreams. As I was listening to it I really did think to myself….I am going to do more. I’m just going to go for it. I don’t care if people call me crazy. I’m taking my shot because if not now, then when?

That is when I started this blog. I had toyed with the idea of a podcast but I didn’t put any serious thought into it. UNTIL…I lost my job. The first week I was kind of in a fog…walking around in shock that it had happened. Because in my opinion I didn’t do anything to get myself tossed out on my keister yet I was out of a job. It occurred to me after about a week that I wanted to do something for work that would never put me in a position again to be canned for things I have no control over. Therefore, I would have to work for myself. Maybe I can do a podcast! I know people make money on them. I know it takes a long time and it can cost a lot before you see any money rolling in. But I like the idea. And I can talk about how I have transformed my life from being extremely negative to becoming a pretty happy person. If this negative Nancy can change maybe I can help other people to change too! Hence, The Hopefulist was born!

So far it has been very rewarding. I have gotten a lot of positive feedback. I have some people who listen faithfully everyday and tell me they can’t wait to hear more. I’ve been told that I’m talking about things someone can relate to and it’s exactly what they needed to hear on that particular day. I have been doing the podcast for about 5 weeks now. I have had my share of issues and trouble getting them on and working through technical issues. But I feel like I’m making a difference and that is truly what it is about for me. I believe so wholeheartedly if I can change from a pessimist to a hopefulist…anyone can because I was as about as bad as you can be. In spite of all the good I had in my life I only focused on what I didn’t have. It took me a long time to change it around but it is so worth it. And I want to help you do it too. I want everyone to live a happy fulfilled life….because anything less is unacceptable! I’m here to remind you of what you are capable of everyday with your daily dose of inspiration and positivity! Tell your friends! Help me by helping you and others by making my dream come true of helping as many people as I possibly can! And I will be forever in your debt.

It’s Friday! It’s memorial day weekend. Let’s keep in mind the true purpose of this holiday….to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for this wonderful country. Take a moment and be thankful. And enjoy the time off, BBQ’s, adult beverages and fun with friends and family. Make some memories. Now, go grab an adult beverage…it’s Cocktail Friday! Woo Hoo!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Taking Action

IMG_0685

Do you know what you want to do and just can’t get started? Here’s what you need to know…just start doing it…NOW! Stop waiting, stop thinking about it, stop planning it (well, plan it while you are doing it) and get going. Do you want to lose weight? Then you need to start eating healthy now. You need to start doing some sort of psychical activity now. You can only walk for 5 minutes? Then do that and increase it as you go. Throw out the junk food at your house if you can’t be trusted being around it. Do you want to start a new relationship? Then sign up for a dating app. And look for people who may be compatible. Go to events in your community. Hang out at Home Depot or Lowes!

Here is a dream I have made happen in the past year or so. Writing. I’ve been wanting to write for a long time. I came up with an idea for a children’s book a few years ago. I know the story I want to tell and how it will go but I never sat down to actually write it. And honestly, I still haven’t. So as you can see I am still working on myself and need to take my own advice. My desire to write shifted into high gear after my mothers funeral and I received a lot of great feedback about the speech I gave about her. My one girlfriend actually said I should consider writing if I wanted another career. It really got me thinking. That was in November right after Thanksgiving. I thought about it a lot but didn’t take any action.

The following February (on my birthday) my beloved Philadelphia Eagles won their first Super Bowl. It was the most amazing feeling. I was overjoyed. I was actually embarrassed by how happy it made me. I thought….I can’t be the only one thinking this. So I sat down and wrote an article about how much the Eagles finally winning a Super Bowl meant to me. I sent it to my local weekly paper and they printed it. In fact, they printed it and I didn’t even know. She never responded when I sent it in so I figured they weren’t going to use it. I got a text from a friend who lives locally one night telling me how much she enjoyed my article in the Sandpaper. I was blown away. I ran out the next morning and grabbed like 10 copies! I was so excited. Do you know what it said at the top of the article? By Wendy McClure! That’s a freaking byline! I have a byline! Holy crap…I’m a freaking writer!

Not only did I get an article printed in a newspaper but not too long after I was actually sent a check. I’m a writer and I’m getting paid? Get out! This is beyond awesome! The woman also enclosed a note (a fellow Eagles fan) and said she loved my article. So you know what I did? I wrote more articles! They were mostly about where I lived and the aspects of living at the shore since it was a local paper for LBI. And she kept printing them. All it took was for me to finally sit down and write that first article. And now I send her stuff all the time. Then I had a friend that contacted someone at a monthly club magazine they give away at bars and restaurants. I wrote a couple of different things and finally settled on becoming a band reviewer for them. I’m still writing for both publications.

So whatever you have been dreaming about doing…stop dreaming and start doing! Just do it. Whatever it is. You may suck at it at first but practice makes perfect. You may not lose weight right away. Or you may trip over something on your first walk. Keep at it. Get on that dating app and start looking for your dream mate. Just do it. Start it…get down to the doing. I would still be sitting here thinking what a great writer I could be if I hadn’t just sat down and wrote something. Not only did I write but I sent it somewhere and it was printed! It’s not always that seamless but just doing it is the first step. Then you can figure out what to do with it. If you have something specific in mind drop me a note or message on the Hopefulist Facebook page and we’ll see if we can come up with a plan together. But get started NOW!

Have a great “I wish it were cocktail Friday, Thursday”!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

It’s Happening!

IMG_0684

I’ll never forget the first time I really realized all the work I’d been doing to change my way of thinking was actually working. It wasn’t that long ago. It was around New Years Eve in the year 2017. I remember seeing on Facebook so many people saying thank goodness this year is over and hopefully next year will be a better one. I thought to myself, huh….I’ve actually had a pretty good year. I have a great husband and we live in our dream home. I made a lot of new friends that year and I got to see my older friends often. I had a job that I loved. It seemed pretty good. Then I put a little more thought in it. I also lost my mother that year. I had a big fight with my sister and we didn’t speak for most of the year. I was stuck working with the worst partner at work. As I thought about these other major life events it struck me. I’ve done it! It’s happened! I am now officially focusing on the positive instead of the negative! It’s what I’ve been working toward for years and I didn’t even realize when it started happening!

A number of books I have read have insisted that you are as happy as you make up your mind to be. I thought that was such B.S. Don’t tell me I don’t want to be happy. Of course I want to be happy. Stop being ridiculous. I can’t believe I paid for this crappy book. But as I’ve said…they all said the same thing and instructed me to do the same things. So little by little I added more and more to try to change my way of thinking. There are so many things holding you back that you don’t even realize. You are feeling guilty or you don’t think you’re a good person or you don’t truly believe you are worthy of what you seek. I am currently re-reading “You are a Badass” by Jen Sincero because it was my turn to pick for my book club and I picked that one! I’ve told you before and I will tell you again to get this book. It helped me figure out so many things that I didn’t even realize I was doing to hold myself and my happiness back.

If you are walking around miserable and think the world is against you…how is that working for you? (in the words or Dr. Phil) You can’t keep doing what you’re doing and expect anything to change. You have to think differently….you have to act differently. Just change your attitude for one day. Go into work thinking this will be a great day and no one is going to bring you down (because they will try). A few months ago I had re-read something that reminded me I can’t change other people and how they act…I can only change my reaction to it. So I went to work on this day with a brand new attitude and right off the bat my partner said something horribly offensive to me on the air during our first break. I couldn’t believe it. He knew he screwed up by the way I reacted and I went off on him once the mic’s went off. But it was a blow to my new attitude. But giving up wasn’t the answer. Just know it won’t always work but you HAVE to keep trying.

It’s honestly no fun to go through life feeling like a victim, like a loser who never has anything work out for them. Read that book…it will totally help you figure out what you are getting out of staying stuck and help unstick you! You can do this. I’m telling you….If I did it, you can too! I mean that with my whole heart. I’m such a happier person than I used to be. It took me a long time to get here. And I still work at it. I still do my gratitude journal everyday and I’ve recently added writing down my top 10 dreams everyday.

Something else I did recently that made me feel really good about myself is I wrote myself a letter saying how far I have come in this thing called life. My letter went something like….always remember how much you have accomplished. I wanted to get in the music/radio business and I’ve made a career out of it for 25 years. I wanted to buy a house at the shore and my husband and I made that happen. I want to stay in shape and I’ve worked really hard over the years to keep my weight down. I picked an amazing husband. These are just some of my examples.

Write yourself a letter (I know you will feel silly…do it anyway!) with all the things you have done in life thus far that makes you really proud. Is it your kids and the kind of parent you are? Is it career related? Is it where you live and what a great partner you are for your spouse? Write it all down! And whenever you are feeling low about yourself drag that letter out and read it again…and again…and again!

If you want to be happy you have to think happy thoughts. It really is that simple. It may take you some time to make the transition. Read the books, write the affirmations and tell yourself that you are worth living the best life possible. Because you are! And check out my blog or podcast or both everyday. I will be a constant reminder for you!

Now go be happy! I’m so excited for you!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

From Pessimist to The Hopefulist

 

IMG_0678.JPG

I wasn’t a kid with a lot self confidence. I felt pretty insecure and unsure of myself most of the time. But I was always a story teller or trying to entertain in some way. I would put on little shows for my family. I loved to dance even though I wasn’t really good at it. I tried to take lessons but at my first session we were told to move about the room in any way we wanted. To just let go and dance and make movements. ???? I was way to insecure to do something like that. There is no way I was comfortable doing something like that at the age of 12 so I never went back. It scared me off. I also wasn’t very self introspective and didn’t really know myself very well. I think I only went off the examples I saw and unfortunately for me I grew up surrounded by pessimists. I heard constantly about how life wasn’t fair and why does this always happen to me and I have the worst luck. I grew up around a victim mentality and sadly it was what I knew.

Luckily I was encouraged to go after what I wanted (even if doing that ended up causing resentment) and I have always been somewhat ambitious. It took me a long time to get through college. I wasn’t a great student. But after seven long years I finally got that bachelors degree in business with a marketing major. But now what? I had always been very into music. I was fascinated with the record industry. I had a dream of being an A&R rep at a record company. They were the people who went out and scouted new talent and developed their careers. But my parents were on my case to get a real job….whatever that meant. I guess as an accountant or an executive. But it wasn’t the music business.

I had a discussion with a friend of mine and he suggested giving myself a time line to pursue my passion of music. A year from graduation to find something in music and if nothing turned up then I could get a sales job and start working on that career. I decided to take that route. The year went by pretty quick and I was still waitressing full time. But a few months before my time was up I went gung ho and sent resumes to anyone and everyone that had something to do with music. I got a response one time from a woman who worked at a major record label and she said my resume hit her desk on the right day and I reminded her a lot of herself and wanted to give me advice on how to get in. (she didn’t have a job for me but I thought it was really great for her to take the time out of her day). She said to try to volunteer at local radio stations, to offer to help out at community concert events, to do whatever I could to get some experience even if I wasn’t getting paid.

Is it just me or does everyone seem to always have two choices when it comes to major life decisions? I had gotten a few bites on the resumes I sent out. One was from a company that ran concert promotions. The other was as a part time promotions rep for a Top 40 radio station in Philadelphia. That was pretty big time. But the radio station job paid two dollars an hour less than the concert promoter job. Hmmm…what to do? What to do? I decided to go with less money because I thought there would be more opportunities available working for the radio station. And guess what? I’ve been working in radio for the past 25 years. Obviously that was the right decision for me.

So I had a job I loved and was on my way to a spectacular career but I was still quite the Debbie downer. I never looked on the bright side. I had a constant attitude that I had the worst luck with everything. I somehow felt like life was more unfair for me. Instead of focusing on having a job I loved…I focused on everything I didn’t have that I wanted and thought I needed in order to be happy.

I watched a lot of Oprah. I watched a lot of Dr. Phil. I loved his no nonsense way of letting you know you were in charge of your life and choices and if you weren’t happy you were the only one who could change it. No more excuses! Get off that excuse caboose! I started reading self help books and felt silly while doing it. I felt silly doing the things they said you should do…like daily affirmations. I felt like an idiot telling myself everyday how wonderful I was. The biggest problem is I didn’t really believe it. I think reading these books gave me a solid foundation to start working on. I read the advice and didn’t usually follow it but it seemed that all these different books were basically telling to do the same things. It finally hit me that there was something to what they were all saying.

At one time I made myself a vision board. I put up pictures of a happy couple walking hand in hand along the beach to achieve that someday. I put pictures of money all over it to draw more money into my life. I didn’t have a lot on it. I thought to myself…I can’t even find stuff that I want in my life. So I just started cutting out pictures of stuff I liked from magazines. Yes, I felt like a 14 year old girl but stay with me. I still don’t remember much of what was on that board but I remember one thing in particular very clearly. It was a pearl and diamond choker necklace from some high end jewelry store. I knew I would never get that necklace…it was way out of my price range. It actually took me awhile to realize that I had bought a necklace that looked identical to the one on my vision board in the costume jewelry department at New York and Company. Coincidence? I brought it into my life by envisioning it. I made it happen. Can it really be that easy? So easy that I didn’t even realize when it happened? Give it a try…you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Even a fabulous necklace that may still be in your collection today!

The one thing that really started making a difference in my life was my gratitude journal practice. I would write down five things I was grateful for throughout the day. It could be anything from how good my coffee tasted that morning to having the most incredible husband. It’s okay to repeat things but not too often. You want to find new things everyday. It sets you up to look for the positive as you move through your day. Keep doing this…it takes practice. It feels weird and annoying at first but I promise you it will be worth the effort and you will be so happy you started doing it. I believe this was the start of my major change. A lot of it ties in together but once you begin to train your brain to look for the positive instead of the negative you are well on your way.

So get yourself a cute little notebook and a fabulous pen. The more you enjoy the tools the more you will want to do the work. And write down five things you are grateful for that happened today or yesterday. Do it right now! You will see how it makes life seem not as bad as you thought. That there are always things to be grateful for.

It’s taco Tuesday!! Now go make it your best day yet!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

The Magic of Wonder

IMG_0682.jpg

When was the last time you sat in wonder? When was the last time you thought something was just amazing? If it’s been awhile, get to it. This is what enhances our life experience and makes us appreciate what has happened and what hasn’t happened.

When I moved down the shore in my early 30’s for a new job I had narrowed down my choices of where to live to Toms River or Long Beach Island. Everyone I worked with lived in Toms River while Long Beach Island was right down the street. The easier decision would have been to go to Toms River since I didn’t know anybody in this area so I could at least hang out with work people from time to time. But my love of the shore won out and not only did I move there but met more people than I think I ever would have in Toms River. But I often look back and wonder how different my life would be had I moved to Toms River instead. And it makes me so grateful for that decision. It is what led me back here eventually and buying my dream home with my husband.

I also wonder if I would have so many friends here if I hadn’t gotten a second job as a bartender the first summer I lived at the shore. I still didn’t know many people and I thought being a bartender would be a great way to meet people. I had never been a bartender before and I was attempting to get a job at one of the hottest spots on the island. A few people told me I didn’t have a chance. I thought…what the hell…I have nothing to lose. I applied, lied and said I was experienced, and got the job. I met the majority of my friends while working that job. But I still wonder how different my life would be if I hadn’t worked up the nerve to apply for that position.

I wonder sometimes how different my life would be if I had married the couch potato boyfriend I had. I’d still probably be arguing with him constantly about giving up a nap in order to go do something fun. I wonder if I wouldn’t have broke free from the very unhealthy relationship I was in when I first moved to the shore how different my life would be. I would definitely be divorced I think. I also wonder how different things would be in my life if my husband and I got together 20 years earlier since we’ve known each other since the age of 8.

I wonder what would have happened if we never would have put the condo up for sale merely to show the condo board how much they were pissing me off. Which led to our selling it in five days and leaving us no where to live. What if we wouldn’t have moved down the shore full time which led to the purchase of our dream house. What if we had decided to say in Pennsylvania instead?

This is something that helps me now. It keeps me on track and makes me truly appreciate all the good in my life. And you know what? It’s just cool to wonder about it. Things could have turned out so differently. Just like in that movie “Sliding Doors” with Gwyneth Paltrow. Did you see that one? Are you happy with where you are? Then wonder and be thankful for the choices you made. If you aren’t happy with where you are maybe wonder about where some of your choices led you in the wrong direction.  Think back to certain crossroads and wonder what your life would like if you made the other decision. Do you think it would have put you in a better place than you are now? Can you revisit it? A different career or job? Staying alone rather than getting married?

Pondering is good. And the feeling of contentment and knowing you made the right decision is priceless. In the worlds of Lee ann Womack….I hope you never lose your sense of wonder. It’s such a nice feeling and the sense of awe you get is a way to get more joy out of your daily life. I wonder…how much better my life can be.

It’s Monday! Before a long, holiday weekend. Make it a great day and a fantastic week!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Sometimes you gotta be a B!

 

IMG_0497

To finish up the week on how to get the help you need. Sometimes you have to help yourself and be willing to be viewed as a b*tch! If you have been asking for something and you aren’t getting a response then you just have to keep asking. The example’s I’m thinking of are more of things you are entitled to rather than asking for favors but it can help in all different scenario’s.

While living in one of my first apartments the maintenance department was very slow in responding. I would call in a request to have something fixed and would get absolutely no response. I would call again and the same non-response would happen. I would have to start screaming and yelling in order for them to finally come and do what was needed. The funny part about this is when I was moving out one of the maintenance workers came to my apartment to help with something. He told me he was new and everyone warned him about the “B” in my apartment. I told him I wasn’t a “B” the first, second or usually even the third time I called. But yes, by the fourth or fifth time I was pretty upset. Did I care that they all felt I was a “B”? Maybe a little but I found it more funny. They failed to see that they drove me to that point. I’m a very nice person but I do not like to be ignored. Especially when I am paying for something.

I recently got in touch with someone about some business dealings. I actually hired them and then heard nothing for over a week. I think a week was plenty of time for this person to get in touch with me and get started on our project. So, I sent an email (I’m still chicken to confront via phone) asking when he thought we would get going on this project and hoped it would be by the end of the week. Low and behold…I got a phone call the same day and the ball is rolling. As annoying as the phrase is…it’s absolutely true…the squeaky wheel gets the oil. Sometimes you have to speak up for yourself.

Will you be viewed as a “B”? Yes, sometimes but you have to find a way to be okay with that. There are so many people who will take advantage of you if you let them so I would rather be a “B” than a sucker. Right? Can I get a “RIGHT ON”? Again, it sucks to have people feel negatively about you but you have to do what’s best for you. How much input or impact do these people you have to go off on your life? They are going to think bad things about you while doing what they’ve been expected to do all along and then probably never think of you again. Or maybe they will tell a story about you for years to their friends and family. Who the heck cares???? You finally got what you needed so don’t worry about it. I always say I’m only a “B” when I’m forced to be. And I believe that to be true and accurate (mostly, we all have bad days…lol).

So if there is something you’ve been waiting for or something you need and aren’t getting….put on those b*tch boots. You are always your biggest advocate so make some noise and get what you need. Wear the name well. I wear it proudly. You can call me all the names you want…I’m very happy.

So take this bit of advice to the bank and have yourself a cocktail. It is COCKTAIL FRIDAY! Woo hoo! Hope you have a fantastic weekend and be safe in whatever you do! Talk to you on Monday!

#hopefulist #wendymcclure #makeityourbestdayyet #writenow #happyandhopeful #selfhelp

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.