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Reach Out to Someone Grieving

Over the past couple of months, I've had friends lose parents, grandparents, friends, and pets. I'm sure you have also.

The loss for the person never goes away so they will always appreciate your caring gesture.

Here are a few ways to reach out…

*Send a check-in text
*Schedule a dinner date
*Send a card
*Make a donation to a nonprofit in memory of a loved one
*Make a meal

How can you help someone who has lost a loved one?

Blessings,

Stephanie

P.S. Haven’t read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

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About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

Several years ago Joellyn bravely stood up in one of my dream board workshops and shared a dream she'd never shared with anyone.

She wanted to write a book. She had zero experience but it was dream God laid on her heart.

After the workshop, Joellyn signed up for my coaching. As they say, the rest is history.

We've been working together ever since!

After we met, life threw her a curveball when her son was diagnosed with dyslexia. Joellyn didn't just become an advocate for dyslexic children but went on to become a dyslexia specialist.

Months later I was thrown the same curveball, just much later in life. I'd always knew something was different with me, but most times I just thought I was stupid. Why could I not get things others kids got?

At age 39, I discovered I’m dyslexic. The roles reversed and Joellyn was now helping me! Our paths were definitely meant to cross.

We both have dreams of standing on a stage, sharing our incredible journey together. And guess what? We know it will happen!

This morning I sent Joellyn a text, “Good luck today! You’ll do fabulous!”

Several hours after that text, I sat at my desk, tears streaming down my face, watching my client, and friend, Joellyn, testify in front of the Indiana House Education Committee on her experience with dyslexia. What a moment!

I’ve spent years being one of her biggest cheerleaders! Who will you cheer on this week?

Blessings,

Stephanie

P.S. Haven't read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

Do you have a talent but it's going to waste?

Life got busy and your talent got buried in the bottom of a plastic container stored under the basement stairs.

Or maybe your talent is something you love but you don't think you're "good enough" to share with the world. You may think, "What if I embarrass myself? I should be able to take a leap of faith, but my faith is fleeting."

I understand where you are coming from. I loved to bake, especially cupcakes, but my decorating skills were questionable at best.

But I baked anyway and gave away my ugly cupcakes.

Then one day I asked a friend, who decorated beautiful cupcakes, to teach me how to make presentable cupcakes.

She showed up at my house, shared her talent with me, and within a few hours I learned how to give away a cupcake I'd no longer be embarrassed to give.

What's your talent?

*Can you sew? Maybe a friend needs new dress hemmed.

*Are you crafty? Maybe an event planner could use your craftiness to make decorations.

*Are you good with money? Maybe you can help a newly married couple create a budget.

*Do your friends rave about your organized home? Call a friend who is always stressed about disorganization and schedule a date to help her out.

I'm a firm believer that are talents were meant to be shared.

Take a minute to jot down your talent and think about who you can help. Reach out to them and offer your assistance. If they accept, schedule time on the calendar to share your talent!

If you can't think of anyone that needs your talent, post on social media, "Any of my friend's need help with (fill in the blank)?"

What talent will you share?

Blessings,

Stephanie

P.S. Haven’t read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

📚Give to Yourself

Do you give, give, give but never take time to give to yourself?

I feel your pain. When I was on my Giving journey, giving a gift every day for 522, when I missed a day I was both devastated and relieved.

Why?

I was tired!

I took a break to rejuvenate. I learned and incorporated ways to give to myself regularly.

When I picked back up on my daily giving, I incorporated self-care.

When you take care of yourself, you can give more to others. An idea that many have a hard time believing and putting into action. I get it! I've been there.

I learned from my mistakes. On this 40-Day Giving Challenge, on Sunday's, I'm challenging you to find a way to give to yourself.

Here are some of my favorite ways…

1. Read a good book.
2. Go for a hike.
3. Soak in a bubble bath.
4. Go to the movies.
5. Journal.

What's your favorite way to give to yourself?

Share with a friend that is always giving and serving others!

Blessings,

Stephanie

P.S. Haven't read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

🍲 Make Soup & Share it with a Neighbor 🍲

Cozy. Comfort. Caring.

These are the words I associate with a steaming bowl of soup.

Think about your neighbors. Is someone shut-in, down on their luck, or could use cheering up?

Make a pot of soup, write a note and deliver it to them today (or this weekend).

Warm up their weekend, and life, with love from your kitchen.

What's your favorite soup to give?

🍵 Share and challenge a friend!

P.S. Haven’t read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

THE GIVING CHALLENGE-Day 3

💌 Leave a kind note for someone in your household. 💌

When I was in high school my dad would leave me notes of encouragement in my car. I'd find them in the morning as I was getting ready to go to school.

My husband does the same thing.

The notes are never long but the words are thoughtful and help me start my day on a positive "note."

Grab a piece of paper, a notecard or a post-it and leave a note or two around the house for your loved ones to find.

"Words can inspire and words can destroy. Choose yours well." – Robin Sharma

Share and challenge a friend!

P.S. Haven't read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

 

Smile at Strangers

Walk down any street in the US and pay attention to the number of people passing by with smiles on their face.

I've noticed, at times, it is hard to find one.

What I've also realized is if I smile, and make eye contact, chances are I get a smile back.

Brighten up the life of a stranger with a free gift, your smile!

And as Mother Teresa said, "Let us always meet each other with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of love."

I have a feeling there are a lot of people in the world that could use some love today.

😃Share and challenge a friend!
😄Post the reaction you receive below!!!

P.S. Haven’t read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

Give away Valentines. 💘 There are so many ways to celebrate Valentines Day, big and small.

-Buy a box of Valentine’s, write a sweet note and give them to strangers (if you are feeling extra generous include candy)

-Put a love note in your spouse’s car or in your child's backpack

-Bring heart-shaped cookies or donuts for your coworkers

💘Share and challenge a friend!
💘Post your Valentines ideas below!!

P.S. Haven't read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

ENGAGE and INVITE YOUR FRIENDS to go on 40-Day Giving Journey!

Instead of giving up chips, wine or sweets, what if you gave away something each and every day for 40-Days, changing the lives of those you encounter and in the end, changing your life?

It’s easy to participate!

1) Each morning I’ll post a giving challenge on this blog, my Facebook page, The Giving Challenge Group and Instagram.

2) Share the challenge and tag a friend. Let’s flood the world with intentional acts of giving!!!

3) Take the posted challenge or create your own!

4) Not necessary, but I’d love for you to share your stories and challenges. It’s how others get motivated to go out and make a difference. It also gives your community great ideas. Let’s show our friends and family that giving is easy!

I can’t wait to go on this journey with you. A journey of 40-Days to a more generous life!

Blessings,

Stephanie

P.S. Haven’t read The Giving Challenge? Purchase Now!

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com

 

This evening at 10:00 while you’re snuggled in your warm home, a group of police officers, friends and family of Trooper Scott Patrick will surround his grave, remembering his last 10-41 (on-duty).

December 21st, the day before Scott was killed in the line of duty always get ‘s to me. I guess there is a reason it’s the darkest day of the year. This time in 2003 Scott was still alive. He was still able to hug and kiss his pregnant wife. He didn’t know this would be his last shift. That he wouldn’t get to celebrate Christmas with his family. He’d leave for work on this evening, go 10-41 at 10:00 p.m. and never return home. Those thoughts haunt me. So much hope on 12-21-2003, and that hope to be shattered hours later in the early morning of 12-22-2003.

As I count down the hours to bundling up and heading to the cemetery, I’m reminded of a blog I wrote on my initial giving journey back in 2011. The words I wrote that day still hold true.

12-11-11
Today is one of the saddest days of the year for me. I have cried on and off all day long. Call me an emotional girl or someone who has a heart and compassion for those that have lost a loved one in such a tragic way. Call it a wife of a law enforcement officer who worries every time her husband leaves the house. And today reminds me more than other days of that reality.

I just returned from a law enforcement memorial that is held at 10:00 p.m. at the graveside of Trooper Scott Patrick. 10:00p.m. December 21, 2003, was the last time Trooper Patrick went 10-41. He would be shot and killed in the early morning on December 22nd.

Tonight friends and family gather to remember him and to say, "You may be gone, but not forgotten." It’s a commitment we made and kept to his family. This year was extremely difficult because they had a bagpiper (gets me every time), the trumpeter (playing taps) and they did a special roll call for Scott over the radio.

Scott was a friend of mine from the police academy and was good friends with my husband. He was one of the best men I had ever met. He always had a smile on his face, was quiet and never a bad word to say about anyone. He was an incredible athlete and could run like the wind.

When he was killed in the line of duty his wife was two months pregnant. He would never get a chance to meet his son, Isaac "Scott" Patrick. After Scott was killed my husband and I made a commitment that #1 we would be there for his family over the years and #2 his son would know what a heroic and wonderful law enforcement officer and man his father was.

His son would be born the following June and at the time I bought tons of baby necessities and clothes. And then I took it one step further, staying to my commitment, every birthday and Christmas starting in 2004, I have sent a gift to Scott. He is now seven (now 13) and he knows who we are and that makes my heart smile.

Today was my annual Christmas gift to Scott. He loves Legos and I bought tons of Legos!

When I was in college, one of my friend’s mom passed away unexpectedly. I remember talking to his father months later and he said "people surround you when the tragedy happens and they are at the funeral and then they go on with their lives and you are there to live with the pain and hurt day in and day out. People forget, and I am still suffering."

Those words have always stuck with me and I have tried really hard to stay in touch with Scott's family so they know, I remember, I still hurt and he won't be forgotten.

As I have stated many times before, say thank you to a police officer for the job they do. 99% of officers are the "good guys" sacrificing their lives on a daily basis for our safety.

So tonight, as you prepare for bed, say a prayer for the men and women in law enforcement and say a prayer for the families and friends who find themselves surrounding a grave of a hero who never returned home.

Blessings,

Stephanie

Never miss a post, enter your email address on the right and hit SUBSCRIBE. Thank you!

About the Author:

Stephanie Jones and her husband, Mike, live in Northwest, IN and enjoy lake life and travel. Stephanie is the author of The Giving Challenge-40 Days to a More Generous Life (on sale NOW!), a speaker, life success coach, and a daily giver. Stephanie empowers people to change their life through giving.

You can contact Stephanie by email at Stephanie@GivingGal.com