Finding Your Beauty In The Mundane

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Hello Everyone,

Another week is upon us and for the first time I was truly stumped as to what to write about this week.  Nothing had me hot and bothered under the collar, nothing had me spinning and turning in the ‘what if’s’ or ‘what could be’s’.  My life at the moment is simply just caught up in the day to day, some would classify as the ‘mundane’ thing called Life.

Our lives really do exist 90% of the time in the mundane, day to day goings on of work, household chores, grocery shopping, paying bills, shuffling the kids too and from school and activities.  All things we know we must do but never relish in having to do them, ‘Just a part of life we all to often find ourselves muttering under our breaths.”

But why do we drudge this ‘mundane’ if so much of our life occurs in it?

Is it because we are always looking for that greener pasture, excitement we think everyone else is having as we scroll down our social media news feeds seeing who just got back from vacation, who is getting married, who had a night out on the town, who just got a big job promotion or who just bought a new house.  And here we are scrubbing toilets, picking up dirty laundry and yelling at our kids for the 11th time to ” freaking clean up their rooms!” All the while wishing your life was just a fraction of what all of your friends lives seem to be.

But what we always seem to forget, people showcase their highlight reel on social media, we don’t brag about cleaning up the dog barf on the living room rug! Well at least not all of us do! 😛

No, we only broadcast the good stuff, the stuff that we are excited about and want to share with others, maybe as a subconscious way to one up others I don’t know, but for some it leaves them feeling less than, that their ‘mundane’ life simply just does not measure up in comparison.

Find-BeautyPlease STOP comparing your behind the scenes to everyone else’s highlight reel!  Find the beauty in the mundane.

I know that sounds weird, but being present and truly living in the moment allows the presence of mind to just ‘be’ and find those little acts or occurrences that can and will bring you pure joy.

For example the other day, I was hand washing the ‘good dishes’ my Mom has had for over 50 years.  I found myself scrubbing the food off the blue and white Delf coloured dishes and with every cloth stroke I was able to remember some of the wonderful family dinners we have had on these very dishes.  The delicious food, boisterous, silly laughter, the love and companionship shared over these dishes truly is the true essence of what is so important and meaningful to me.  That was my little nugget of joy I was able to find in the mundane task of housework.

What little nugget of joy will YOU find if you were to just stop and be present in your day to day life?

It really is such a small but significant mind shift that can reap you such AMAZING moments of clarity and inner peace.

Beauty can be found in some of the most unexpected places, but only if we are open and willing to look for it.  If you do, those mundane lives we all lead will seem just that little bit brighter and worth sharing on Facebook. 🙂

Thank you for reading once again, I would love to hear your feedback and maybe moments that you were able to find the beauty in the mundane, I’d love to hear it!

Until we meet again,

Love and Light I send to you always,

Dina xxoo

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What are YOU Worth?

 

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When you think about who you are and what you contribute to your family, to your friends, coworkers, to society and more importantly to yourself, what are you worth?

This question came up again for me after I recently attended an evening of female empowerment put on by Jenn Wallace the creator and CEO of The GWEn (Growing Women Entrepreneurs) Conference. The evening started at a lovely little cafe’/wine bar in Jordan, surrounded by lovely women and fellow Niagara Region Women Entrepreneur’s all laughing, eating, talking and drinking in the positive and empowering atmosphere we were all creating together.  After a little time, we were asked to take our seats and prepare for the evening’s featured speaker, Agnes Apps of ReHolistically Speaking.  She was very captivating as she explained her life struggle with always having to be the ‘responsible’ one, taking on the emotions and the ‘baggage’ of everyone who directly impacted in her life, family, friends, coworkers.  Sound familiar with any of you?

She then went on to explain that we as women especially empathetic women take on the most energy that is put out around us which leads us down our road of stress, anxiety and feelings of not being good enough or worthy. When we work to clear our minds of others projected energy, be in the present, we are then able to physically balance our bodies and empower our very  souls.

Now this very notion struck a chord with me.  As some of you may know I have been on my own journey of personal work for some time now after leaving an abusive 7 1/2 year relationship and having to battle back from my own personal rock bottom.  Having that little voice always in the back of my head telling me how I am never good enough or pretty enough or smart enough some days feels like an all day battle.  I had noticed that these insecurities had started to leak into my business as well.

Was I pricing my services too high?  Should I lower them just so I can get clients?  Can I really start my own business? All questions entrepreneurs especially women entrepreneurs face most days.  But then another voice, that was quiet, almost in a whisper, reverberated through all the other ‘noise’, and she said,  Yes you can…

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Knowing your value is so paramount when you are starting your own business.  It is a scary and sometimes lonely endeavor.  When the calls are not coming in, you begin to doubt what you are doing is right or even if you are capable of achieving it.  One thing I have come to realize and was reaffirmed after Agnes spoke, was that we truly do attract the energy we put out into this world.  So if we are projecting negative energy, then negative energy is what we will receive with no business coming in.  Knowing and recognizing that your time, expertise and knowledge are worth the price you are asking, and projecting that into the universe, WILL bring the RIGHT clients your way; those clients that recognize the services and the expertise you are offering them is WORTH what you are asking .  It is the reciprocal relationship we all crave as business owners.  And if you find that a prospective client is not recognizing this, simply say NEXT and send them on their way so the right one can come along.  I have also come to realize that our own internal energy of self worth MUST be present in order for us to align it with what energy we are projecting out into the world.  If I don’t believe I’m worth it, then who will?

Yes I have done the personal work on this, that I will take ownership of, BUT, I must acknowledge the women who have come along on this journey with me, departing their own wisdom and friendship.  So here I acknowledge Kaare Long for taking me under her wing as my business and social media mentor who not only taught me everything she knows about PR but what you had discovered about life and sisterhood.  My mom Janna Arsenault – Haines, for always being my rock, a soft place to land when I needed and for never letting me go through life half assed.  Jenn Wallace, for welcoming me when I landed back here in Niagara and for being a true supporter of me and all women entrepreneurs, while truly holding up a mirror to myself and showing me I am worthy.  Debi Kasmar, for truly welcoming me into her tribe and always making me feel welcome and a part of her community.  Dana Smithers for showing me through the Law of Attraction for Business that being a successful entrepreneur really does lie within ourselves and what we chose to project out into the world.  Lastly, I would like to acknowledge my growing network and tribe of women I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with over these past few months.  You all have graciously welcomed me into our growing community of like minded women and it is because of all of you I now feel empowered enough to say, I recognize and acknowledge my worth and will never allow internal or external negativity devalue it again.

So as you can see, being a solopreneur does not mean you have to go it alone.  I have said it before and I will say it again, find your tribe and you will be AMAZED at what you can accomplish when you have the support and inspiration of others just like you.

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Thank you for taking the time to read my weekly ramblings, that never goes unnoticed.  I welcome your feedback and I want to leave you with this question:

What are YOU worth?

I would love to hear your answers in the comments below.

Love and Light Always,

Until next week,

Dina xxoo

Planting The Seeds For Growth

In light of the unbelievable tragedies that have happened recently in Orlando Florida, the murder of YouTube sensation and former ‘The Voice’ contestant Christina Grimmie and the mass shooting in a LGBTQ nightclub, everything in me wants to react and write a scathing blog on the despicable behaviour of those who participate in the propaganda and detrimental behaviour associated with the hateful act of homophobia and the desperate need for gun legislation and gun control in the United States.

BUT, I am choosing a different approach, an approach that will promote community building and networks of support systems that can directly uplift and give a hand up to those who need it; sustainable organic community based farming.  Now, before you all go crazy and comment, “But Dina what the hell does one thing have to do with the other??”

Well let me tell you, what happened in Orlando is horrific no doubt about it, an act that needs to be addressed and hopefully a viable solution can be determined so it doesn’t happen again in the future.  I as an individual have been promoting equality for ALL, no matter what sex, age, race, ethnicity and or sexual orientation since I could form complete thoughts and sentences and I will continue to do so until my dying breath.  But, I feel that the answers to something of this magnitude in another country is beyond my scope and control.  How I choose to react and learn from this ordeal however is well within my reach and control.  I could become angry, outraged and continue to spread the hatred and negativity within and amongst my community.  I could do that, but how will this benefit me or my neighbour? The answer, it doesn’t.

So why not focus on things that will have a positive impact on the community in which ILocal-Food-quote live and work?  My community of Niagara is in desperate need of a sustainable organic food economy affordable and accessible for ALL no matter their sexual orientation, race, ethnicity or socioeconomic status etc.  We have a high rate of unemployment in this region and with it a high disparity for access to healthy food for those who fall below the poverty line.  This disparity has created a lot of anger and resentment amongst the ‘haves and have nots’. These are real tangible issues happening in my community, right now.

So, I have decided along with organizations like the Niagara Farm Project to make it my mission to promote the importance of creating a sustainable local food economy for all. This region is abundant in natural food resources, EVERYONE should have access to wholesome, organic food instead of the cheaper mass produced processed ones we see littering the shelves.  These mass produced food stuffs are nothing but poison and serve no place in our bodies.

How can we expect those who do not have access to healthy permaculturally grown food to ever have a chance for mental and physical health and well being, to better their life circumstances and end the cycle of poverty?  The answer is, we can’t.

So here I am, starting my very first backyard organic garden.  Modest and small but it is mine.  Beyond flower beds, growing vegetables for my family’s consumption is very new to me.  Getting outside and getting my hands in  the dirt is meditative and cathartic. Growing food to better my families health and contributing to a cause that can directly positively impact my community is so rewarding and tangible.  I believe that if you put good healthy food and energy into our bodies, good and positive things will result for both ourselves and our respectable communities.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not so naive to think planting organic veggies will lead to better gun legislation, less gun violence and equality for all, I mean I get that.

But contributing to the betterment of society and our communities by getting back to the earth and feeding our bodies and our souls with good nutrition, creating sustainable support systems amongst our neighbours can and, will start a positive chain reaction of community involvement and cooperation.  And that ain’t all bad!

Be the change you wish to see in this world.  And I wish to see positive community building and uplifting those less fortunate so we may all have a level playing field.

I encourage you to find an organization or cause you believe in and focus your energy on that.  Fill the world with positivity so hate will no longer have a place to live, fester and spread.  I choose growing wholesome food for my family and my community as my cause of choice; a choice that can have the biggest positive bang for its buck so to speak.

If you are looking for an organization here in Niagara that is focusing on building a sustainable permaculturally grown food economy for EVERYONE no matter their socioeconomic status please click the hyper link for these organizations; Niagara Farm Project, Greening Niagara and Greener Learning.

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This is how I choose to contribute positively to my community, how about you?

Before I go, I would like to send my deepest condolences to all of those impacted by these senseless tragedies and send nothing but love and healing vibes for you, your families and your communities. ♥

Spread Love and Love Will Spread…

Thank you for taking the time to read my weekly ramblings and I look forward to your feedback and comments!

Love and Light Always,

Dina xxoo

Lets Redefine Feminism On Our Own Terms Shall We

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I am not going to lie, right up until this point, I really did not have a clue as to what I was going to write about this week.  I hymned and hawed on what would be an interesting topic for not only me to write about but what all of you would be interested in reading as well. But, my mind kept coming back to what I had witnessed over the weekend to my friend and colleague; she was bullied and harassed by a group of women online who heralded themselves for being the shear definition of empowerment and support under the guise of feminism, for not fitting into their own narrow definition of what a feminist should feel and behave like.

Ummmmm What????

So I knew I had to tackle this head on and put my thoughts into the ring so to speak.

To start, let’s look at the encyclopedia definition of Feminism:

” the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.”

Seems straightforward enough.  But as we all know, this definition has evolved over time just as our society at large has evolved as well.

Today, we have very different factions of feminist movements looking to fight for what they perceive is injustice and inequality towards women all over the world based on what is happening in their region and or country.  All admirable and justified in the fight for women’s equality and rights and freedoms.

But, when I see the term feminism used as a weapon by other women to scold or manipulate, control or oppress the very women they so proudly say they are empowering and uplifting I have to put my foot down and say something, and that something is FUCK YOU!

I am so tired of this toxicity that has been bubbling over amongst groups of women both on and offline.  Why are we spending so much time tearing each other down when we should be building each other up? 877a67b9648e18b2ecf225931fda2b4a

We have become our own worst enemies, gossiping and comparing ourselves to this unobtainable perfect woman we are all told we should aspire to be and not just from the mainstream media but from other women as well.

Guess what, I am a feminist and I too have issues with my self image, weight, being good enough, pretty enough, strong enough.  And you know what, that doesn’t make me any less of a feminist, it makes me a FREAKING HUMAN BEING!

Too me Feminism is ANYTHING a woman feels, thinks or does, no matter what form that takes.  Only requirement is that it was done by a woman, yup, only requirement in my books.

We all have free choice and we should not be made to feel less than because our choice is not yours or a choice that fits in perfectly to this preconceived notion of what a feminist should look and act like.

Guess what, us feminists come in all shapes and forms; career minded women, stay at home moms, artists, daughters, sisters etc.  All ages, ethnicities, religious backgrounds and sexual orientations. How we chose to define feminism and our place within the context of that term is entirely up to us!

Will we have differences of opinion or points of view?

Yup, Absofreakinglutely!

But you know what, that is OK, no really it is. And I will still consider all of them a part of the sisterhood of feminism.

So when I witness, a group of women attack and bully my friend just because she chose to reveal her vulnerability about how she was feeling about her self image in a raw captured moment, it angers me.

This was a perfect opportunity for these women to rally around and support, empower and applaud my friend for being vulnerable and authentic in who she is and choosing to own it, flaws and all.  But no, they chose it as a sign of weakness that should be pointed out and scolded for having.

So what is the answer?

I believe the answer lies within all of us.  Simply put, treat others how you would like to be treated.  Seems simple enough, don’t you agree?

So I challenge you, my fellow sisters and brothers who align themselves with the need for equality amongst the sexes, lets seek out and align ourselves with our ‘tribe’ so to speak and let’s start our own feminist movement, a movement that applauds ALL women no matter their differing points of view into a sisterhood of empowerment and support.  Let us be the change we want to see in this world and let’s start our own revolution, a revolution of positivity for ALL!

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So what do you say are you in?

Once again, thank you for reading my weekly ramblings, your support does not go unnoticed!

I look forward to your feedback 🙂

Love and Light I send to you always,

Dina xxoo