The Little/Big Pieces – Why sorting through them over and over again is so important.

Ready, set, go!
Carry only what you need and refuel often.

A child dumps his entire toy box out onto the floor, and our stress begins to build. We just “contained” the mess, and now it’s strewn all about again. The never ending exercise of picking things up and putting them away is a fruitless effort. Or is it?

What a lesson this tireless exercise teaches us though, if only we sit back long enough to observe.  Amidst the “mess” lies a stark parallel to our life as adults. In the overwhelming pile of “things” on the floor, we notice that there exists items that we use/need everyday, and those that we don’t use very often, but we treasure very much and can’t seem to part with. Inevitably, there’s always some trash mixed in there too. If we truly want to feel good about our efforts, we go the extra step and throw it all away then, instead of putting it back in the toy box to deal with later. 

And then…..there are the little pieces. The smaller items that once were part of something bigger, but somehow became separated, and are now just random bits and pieces of something larger that they are no longer connected to. 
You know these pieces. They are the ones that fall to the very bottom of the toy box and are often forgotten about until that day comes when we actually need them, but then can’t find them. We often overlook and underestimate these “little pieces”, not realizing that without them, we are just holding onto bigger things that are incomplete. We hold onto all of these little pieces in hopes of, one day, reconnecting them and making them whole again. 

What’s most noticeable though, is that it’s these little pieces that can often be the most valuable. If you’ve ever watched a child dump out his/her toy box and stumble upon a small, seemingly insignificant piece, and hear them say “Oh!!!!! I’ve been looking all over for this!!!”, you know the gratification that is felt in that moment. Yet, we dump these boxes out over and over again, pack them back up, but rarely put any effort into actually sorting through the pieces. Eventually, we get tired of moving these random, misfit pieces back and forth and all around, and we decide to throw them out, only to find the part it belongs to long after it’s gone.  

Our lives are a lot like an overfilled/unorganized toy box or tool chest. We do our best to keep it all contained, we hold onto various pieces that no longer fit or appear to belong, but think “one day” they might. We often overlook all of the little pieces that fall to the bottom of our containers, and our priorities, only to find that they were the most important after all. 

If we don’t take inventory of broken, missing, or incomplete pieces, we often lose sight of some of the most valuable parts of our life. On the other hand, if we find that we’re carrying around lots of odd and end pieces that we no longer need, use, or enjoy, it’s time to let them go. We get too comfortable in the process of clearing things from our sight and throwing them all into a box to deal with later. However, in order to truly move forward in a positive and productive way, and allow room for the right things to be stored and appreciated, we need to practice “picking things up and putting them away” over and over again. We need to take inventory regularly.

So, today, make a commitment to make room, clear the clutter, and find those small pieces in your life that need to be reconnected and made whole again. This is how we make space for the things we truly love, cherish, and need in our life. 

“Live Better. Learn More. Laugh Harder. Love Deeper. ” Shane Svorec #thelookupgirl

The Two Most Powerful Words

Do you know what the two most powerful, action inducing, life changing words are?  If you don’t, read on.


Sticks & Stones (and Self-Talk)

 “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”

OR will they?

The power of positive self-talk is significantly underestimated and often overlooked.  To better understand our everyday behaviors and moods, we need to take note (literally) of what we say to ourselves, and pay close attention to what we do after we say them.  Often, when people are prompted to perform this simple exercise of tracking self-talk, they are shocked to discover how, even subtle moments of negative self-talk throughout the day, can add up quickly and lead to a day of self-fulfilling prophecies.

The very first thought(s) that enter your mind as you awake each morning (and how you address/respond to them) have the power to directly affect your entire day.  What we say to ourselves (our inner dialogue) is what we become conditioned to believe.  Even the smallest, seemingly harmless comments, can become negative mental traps that lead to feelings of frustration, disappointment, unhappiness, defeat, and despair.

Pressing pause on the playlist

What can we do to change this continuous loop?

The first step is recognizing the strength of our words and acknowledging our minds willingness to accept and respond to them – both good and bad.  Rather than focusing on what we CAN’T do, we must shift our thinking to focus on what we CAN do.  When we do this, we give ourselves the power to overcome the things we cannot change, by creating alternative ways to succeed and find happiness.  Whereas when we choose to repeat, over and over again what we can’t do, we begin to accept, believe, and give power to the idea of impossibilities.

Words will either hurt you or help you

There are two words in which I refrain from ever using, and even went as far as forbidding a most special friend from ever uttering because I loved her so.  The words “I can’t” are filled with doubt, fear, loneliness, pain, and weakness.  These two words ooze ugliness and leave us feeling powerless.  Using them only reinforces our limitations and our acceptance of them.

Instead, by focusing on what we CAN do, we find empowerment in our choice to decide what we want to focus on, accept, change, or resist in our lives.  Statements that begin with “I CAN”  are filled with hope, choice, freedom, power, and determination.

Your Voice.  Your Choice. 

We all have fears and will doubt ourselves from time to time, but if we make it a practice to use words that reinforce and convey positive power and possibilities, we set the stage for success, rather than expecting failure.  We can’t always control the circumstances in which we find ourselves, or the obstacles in which we have to face, but as I often told my dear friend and Heavenly Hero, there are two things that can never be taken away from you:  One, is your voice, and the other is your choice.

So, choose your words wisely and use them carefully.  What you say to yourself, you may just start to believe.  What you say to others, many may start to believe.

As for me, I CAN do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  – Philippians 4:13