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February 2020

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I gotta be honest, I no longer believe in Random Acts of Kindness. What? Stephanie, aren't you the Giving Gal? Don't you look for ways to give and be kind every day?

Yes, yes I do.

But what I continue to learn on my giving journey is I wake up each day knowing I'm going to look for ways to give. And then when I see an opportunity, I'm going to act. The act of kindness is intentional.

With that said, I'm still supporting wonderful holidays, like Random Acts of Kindness week, because at the end of the day, any time we can spread kindness and positivity, we should.

Here are 14 ways you can give this week:

  1. Donate clothes to a local nonprofit (call before you donate to see what they need)
  2. Send cards to your local nursing home
  3. Help a neighbor with a chore
  4. Compliment a stranger
  5. Call a family member
  6. Send five encouraging texts to friends
  7. Forgive someone
  8. Give a hug to a stranger (ask permission first😊)
  9. Call a teacher friend to see if there are supplies, they need, if so, purchase and donate
  10. Make a positive post on social media
  11. Bake cookies for your coworkers (or buy Girl Scout cookies😊)
  12. Thank a first responder (police officer, firefighter and/or ems)
  13. Send a thank you card to someone that has made a difference in your life
  14. Disconnect from technology/television and have a family game night

I'd love to know your thoughts on random acts of kindness. Do you believe in them? Or have I changed your mind?

Happy giving,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of “The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life” and "The Gratitude Challenge: 41 Days to a Happier, Healthier, & More Content Life"


It's the "love" month.  And this week we'll celebrate both Galentine's Day and Valentine's Day.  

Don't know about Galentine's Day? It's the day before Valentine's Day when you gather your best of friends and celebrate friendship.

 And then there is Valentine's Day. It's a holiday that you either love, hate or love to hate!

As I scrolled through my phone looking at pictures, I realized, there are lots of ways and things we can love this week. Here's my list.  Reply to this newsletter or comment on the post and let me know what we have in common. Also, let me know what you'd had to the list. 

1. Meeting new people

2. Snuggles

3. Live music

4. Travel

5. Receiving gifts

6. Giving gifts

7. Chocolate

8. Supporting a friend pursue their dream

9. Mugs with words of encouragement

10. Inspiring quotes

11. Going to a college football game with my husband

12. Dinner out with friends

13. Weddings

14. Leaving notes of encouragement for strangers

15. Meeting coaching clients in person

16. Sunsets

17. The Pumpkin Show-Seeing old friends and riding rides

18. Dairy Queen

19. Seeing the results of hard work and effort

20. Fundraisers with friends

21. Journals

22. Rainbows

23. Jumping in leaves

24. Bookstores

25. Taking a hike

26. Trees

27. Watching my nephews/nieces play sports

28. Writing

29. Family time

30. Friends getting together (old and new)

31. Pictures of those no longer with us (they make me sad, but I love I'll always have memories with them)

32. Hugs

33. Reading my Bible

34. Worshipping and going to church

35. Celebrating birthdays

36. Baking with friends

37. Signing books

38. Cincinnati Reds Baseball games with family

39. Christmas

40. Flannel Pajamas

41. Goals written on a whiteboard

42. Seeing my husband's smile face while fishing

43. Kayaking

44. Winter hats

45. Thanking Veterans

46. Running races (actually finishing races...lol)

47. Popcorn

48. Lots of snow

49. Coffee with friends

50. Family

51. Friends

52. Wedding pictures

Happy Valentine's Day! I love all my followers and readers! I hope you spend this week/month spreading love and kindness to all that cross your path.

With gratitude,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of "The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life" and “The Gratitude Challenge: 41 Days to a Happier, Healthier, & More Content Life”

This past week has been crazy. On Tuesday I launched my second book, The Gratitude Challenge, and unexpectedly on Thursday my husband worked a 20-hour shift. Yes, you read that correctly, twenty hours!

On Friday, family came into town and on Saturday we hosted a belated Christmas gathering. Needless to say, our one on one time over the past week didn't happen.

Sunday, as I sat writing book number three, boom! The house rattled, startled I jumped, what the heck was that?

I continued writing and moved to checking off tasks on my to do list. 

Boom! Again, the house rattled and this time I yelled to my husband, "What is that sound?"

He chuckled, and responded his friends were shooting exploding targets. 

"Oh! Why aren't you over there with them?" I replied.

"Because you asked me to stay home with you for the Super Bowl."

A twinge of guilt permeated my body. 

I'm sure he'd rather be with his friends on Super Bowl Sunday than sitting at home with me. I even told him a couple of times to go and don't worry about me.

To be honest, I was fine to be home by myself and tick through the 200 things on my to do list that I needed to get done before tomorrow. 

But then I thought back to what I often preach from the stage and even in my writings. 

I'm often asking my coaching clients, "Are your actions aligning to your priorities?"

If the answer is no, sometimes we must make sacrifices to get in realignment.

And so even if my husband would rather be watching the super bowl with friends, though he never indicated this, just sounds more fun to me than hanging with your wife...lol, and I could use the time to work through my to do list, at the end of the day we are each other's priority.

Sunday wasn't about watching the Super Bowl. It was about him cooking me dinner. Us sitting together, while the Super Bowl was on, and chatting about the past week.  Discussing what we had going on in the coming week. Our time together was about reconnecting and getting synced up from a crazy week. 

I believe, on reason, a relationship fails, is due to continuing to kick the can down the road. We go weeks or even months without focused time together. And this doesn't just have to be in marriage. I see it in companies where managers don't connect with their employees, where parents don't make time for their children, and when friends no longer get together because life is "busy."  

Yesterday taught me, as life has repeatedly, I'll never regret the time I spend with my husband, my family or my friends. My "to do" list, can always wait.

Who do you need to make a priority this week? Take out the calendar, cancel a meeting, and schedule time with someone that is your priority.

With gratitude,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of “The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life” and "The Gratitude Challenge: 41 Days to a Happier, Healthier, & More Content Life"