tgiF- Who Are You, Really?

think. grow. inspire Friday -Who are you, really?

When I was working in the Human Services field, there is a term in use “Social Role Valorization”. Basically it means that society tends to identify certain groups of people as “different” and therefore of lesser value. For example, the difference in our perception of people asking for money. If we see a homeless person doing it, we call it begging, if it is a sports team, we call it fundraising. Our “social roles” are how we identify ourselves and others. So who are we really?

When I was born, I was an only child. That changed when my brother was born 3 years later. I became a big sister, and the only girl in the family. That changed when my sister was born when I was 5. Now I was the oldest of three, the responsible one, the helper.

At this time, I started kindergarten at the school where my father was the Principal. I’m sure I was treated differently by some of the teachers because of this. I know that I got a lot of attention from older students. When I started grade 2, we moved to St. John’s from the small community where we lived, and I became “the new girl”. Through my elementary and junior high years, I was the day dreamer, the bookish one, and the one who just didn’t do well in gym. I was nerdy, and an outsider, even in the group of kids in the neighbourhood.

Then there was another move, this time to Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Where the new girl in school started over again. I was also a Newfie on the mainland, who spoke just a bit differently than everyone else. I made friends with a girl who lived close by and who was involved in the school band, so I tagged along with her to all of the band functions. Now I was a teenager, and socially awkward, and trying so hard to be one of the crowd.

Three years later, and another move. This time to Moncton, the summer before I started grade 12. The new girl again, but now in a school where everyone had grown up with each other, and were preparing to graduate from high school. I became Ray’s girlfriend.

Five years after that, I became Ray’s wife.

In the years that followed, I became a stay at home mom and a working mom. I am a Black Belt, a body builder and a Bikini competitor.  I am a business woman, a writer, a friend and supporter to my friends.

So when I look at all the roles I fill in my life. I sometimes (often) wonder if I am doing the right thing at the right time. So many times I am “being” one person, and feeling guilty that I am not “being” another. Trying to be all things to all people is a sure recipe for disaster. I am learning to be in the “now moment”, and it’s not always easy. So many things vie for our attention, and it is hard to shut them off and focus on the project at hand. And to get back to my original paragraph, it is how we value ourselves in each of these roles that impacts us the most.

So, my challenge for you all this week, is to identify your different roles and to recognize the value you have in each one of them, and if one takes over a bit more time than the others, then give yourself permission to be that person.

Thank you for reading today!  tgiF!

~Michelle

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Other columns by Michelle: CLICK HERE

 

My #80lbJourney – 8 Week Challenge in review!

My #80lbJourney - 8 Week Challenge in review!

My #80lbJourney: 8 week challenge in review

Okay, I really need to get back to weekly blogging about my journey. Not only does it keep me accountable, I hope it also helps keep others inspired and on track.

It has been over a month since the last post, and I am truly sorry it has been this long. Many things have happened and I will recap for you with results, accomplishments and barriers. As you all know, this is a long term journey for me. There is no quick fix or magic solution. It is a learning experience and lifestyle change. If you have been following along, you will know that I joined an 8 week challenge with Deb of Journey to Wellness. During the 8 weeks, I received all the tools I needed to start fueling my body instead of just eating, exercising challenges to keep me motivated to stay active, and a support system that included Deb and a private Facebook group of other women to share with and support. My results in pounds and inches are noticeable, I lost 18 lbs and 22 inches, but what I found the most rewarding about this program was the way I felt during the entire process and the knowledge I carry with me now about how to listen to my body and work FOR it, instead of against it. Trust me, there were ups and downs, and when any of us had downs, the Facebook group was amazing. By sharing our experiences, goals and achievements, we were able to support and encourage each other on the rough days, the days we fell off the high of achievement, and felt defeated. We celebrated every little hurdle, and I truly enjoyed meeting all these ladies virtually. Deb checked in personally each week and provided feedback based on what I sent her. My meals and my thoughts for the week. She is a wealth of knowledge and understands first hand what it takes to be happy and healthy while also running a household with children. THANK YOU Deb for being an inspiration to us, and for sharing your training and knowledge with us, so we can continue to be healthy in the future. My only wish with this program was that I was in the Halifax area and would have been able to join in some of the classes Deb offers in Fall River. If you are looking for a fitness program, check out her page here. Here's what Paula had to say in our Facebook group, about how she felt after 8 week challenge we completed: "Deborah Hann,  Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, from the bottom of my heart thank-you for taking me under your wing.  For teaching me how to nourish myself,  for teaching me the difference between eating and nourishing,  for showing me that, even with my beat up old body, I CAN EXERCISE!!!  For making me believe and understand that I am beautiful, for helping me understand my value.  Thank you for helping me realize the mental strength that healthy living gives me.  Yes I lost lbs and inches!!!  I'm so happy for that, but I am so very happy and grateful for all of the things I have gained from this wonderful, life changing program. Deborah, you are an amazing teacher and a wonderful loving person.  I am so thankful for having you in my life.  All that I have learned from you will continue to be my everyday way of living.  (Yay!!!  No more binge eating!!!) To all of you wonderful, bootilicious, powerhouse women; Keep on keeping on!!!  I love you all so much, you have enriched my life and made this past 10 weeks, inspiring, funny, encouraging......xoxoxoxo"  

FOLLOW UP: What's happened since the 8 week challenge?

Since the challenge ended I have struggled with keeping on track. I gained and lost a couple pounds here and there, but still linger around the same weight. I have not remained consistent with exercise, and that is where I need to focus these days. This month I have set a goal to eat as best I can with parties, visiting, and some family meals planned. I know it is possible to stay on track, and my realistic goal for December is to maintain my weight.

Moving forward...

In January I will be getting back on track and working with a friend locally to stay on my journey to better choices and healthier ways. I look forward to sharing what I am doing and encourage you to share what you are doing as well. In January, I will also be launching a Facebook group for those who want to follow along and join me in the journey. I continue to receive positive feedback from my readers through emails expressing how I am inspiring them to make changes. It is an amazing feeling knowing that just by putting my journey out there, it might help just one other person decide to make positive changes. So keep going, no matter how many times you take backward steps, you can always keep moving ahead. One step at a time, one bite at a time, one push up, or carrot....whatever it is that challenges you, keep pushing forward!

Check out my other #80lbJourney Posts here:

Giving Back – C103’s Community Santa & an awesome lady with a plan!

givingbacktitle C103's Community Santa recipient, Jackie, reached out to the Moncton Coupon Lady...here's what happened: givingback01 C103 fm Moncton, a local radio station is running an awesome contest this holiday season! They are giving callers $100 to give back in the community. If you are the lucky caller each day, you will be challenged to use that $100 to the best of your ability to help out someone in the community. You can be creative and you have 24 hours to spend it. On the weekend I received a message on the Moncton Coupon Lady facebook page asking for help. Jackie had $100 to spend and wanted to make a donation to The Humanity Project. Shortly thereafter she told me she had two other businesses (Fero Waste and Recycling Inc. & Riverview Superstore) who matched her $100, so now she had $300 to spend. I spent some time figuring out what she would be able to get the best deals on with and without coupons. Then, knowing my good friend and fellow couponer Judy works closely with The Humanity Project, I asked for her help. She knew exactly what they needed the most and we worked collecting coupons from other local couponers (Alicia, Betty, Kerri, Heather and Tina) and were able to plan a pretty great shop! On Saturday, Jackie went to the Superstore in Riverview, who gave her $100 to spend, and she spent $140 on Eggs, Canned veggies, Pasta, Tomato Sauce, Juice an more. Then on Sunday morning, Jackie, Judy, and I, along with our little helper Cohen, went shopping. This is what we were able to do with coupons!
  • 60 Boxes of Aunt Jamima Pancake Mix $2.50 (reg), Price Matched $2 - $1 coupons = $1 / box
  • 22 Bags of Green Giant Frozen Veggies with Pasta $2.50 - $1 wyb2 (booklet/print)= $2 each
  • 20 Black Diamond Cheese Slice Pks $2.97 (reg), Price Matched $2.47 - $0.75 (booklet) = $1.72 each
  • 19 Quaker Brand Cereal $4 & $4.98 (reg), Price Matched $1.97 - $1 (tear pad) = $0.97 each
15401398_1365131183498389_2122064958_n There will be a couponing seminar open to the public coming up mid January at the Humanity Project location (this will be a fundraiser for them, 60% ticket sales going back to them) We will plan another big shop with the money raised. Tickets will be the same as always, $10 per person, 2 hours of learning and handouts with all the info to get you saving! You will save that $10 and so much more in no time!! **************** This is the kick off of a new section on Everything Unscripted, showcasing "Giving Back" in your community. Do you or someone you know gives back to your community in a unique way? Perhaps you know someone who is doing great things in your area, but very few people know what is being done. I want to hear about what unseen projects are being done, or unique fundraising, or community support efforts are happening around the Maritimes. Contact me at ruthann@everytingunscripted.com if you have something to share!  

Join My Team Today!

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Have you ever thought about starting your own business?

I sold Avon for 9 years and enjoyed every minute of it. I had one of the top teams in Canada, earned 3 beautiful trips, many awards and received recognition for my hard work. Over the past few years I took a break from selling and building a team. Once my second child came along (9 1/2 years after my first), and my speaking engagements and other business commitments grew, I needed to let something go. That something at the time was Avon... that's the beauty of working for yourself. You control your business, and can make it work for you, your family and your lifestyle. I always knew I would come back to Avon, and even though I have not been gone long, it was the break I needed to regain the focus to do it all the right way! Now, as of November 2016, I am back to Avon and building a team again. My favourite part of this business is working with my team members to help them grow and succeed. Trust me, I am not a sales person, talking to people does not come natural, and I would rather stay home than go out of the house. BUT, my biggest achievement with Avon in the past was on the personal development side. When you take orders, you have to deliver them, and meeting new people is a side effect. When you book events or go door to door, you have to speak to someone. Avon not only gave me the confidence to meet new people and build a large customer base, I also challenged myself to build a team. By surrounding myself with like minded people, working hard & setting goals, I was able to reach far beyond my comfort zone. This is when I was in love with my business the most. The leadership program rewards you more when you work with your team, and build a sustainable business for everyone. Team meetings, face to face training, Skype calls with reps in other areas and team incentives were my main channels of support. I learned so much my first time around with Avon. This time I have a longer term plan, personal development and financial goals in place. With new reps already on board in my first month back, I am looking for more people to work with and help achieve their personal goals. Avon is my choice because I love the products, no one asks me to explain what it is, and the company has been around for 130 years. Avon is an amazing company to work with and the earning opportunities are endless. How would you like to join me, and be part of a team who supports each other in person and online?
  • With No Sales Quotas, there's no pressure.
  • One time $10 start up fee is charged to your first order, so there is No Up Front Cost to you.
  • Start sharing the e-brochure and collecting orders right away.
  • You can buy, sell or grow a team...it's your choice!

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I am looking for people across Canada to join my team. If you would like to join me in this business, fill out this form and I will send you an invitation to join my team today!!

My #80lbJourney – On The Road and On Track

My #80lbJourney - On The Road and On Track When life gets busy, it can be so easy to derail oneself while trying to make the right food choices.  Family activities, busy schedules, and traveling can all wreak havoc on your plans to eat healthier. I will be the first to admit, the last few weeks have been a struggle for me when it comes to planning ahead. If I don't take time on Sunday's to plan my meals and my snacks for the week, at least my lunch and snack options, then I get off track very quickly. Today I am in Halifax for the day and I took the time last night to plan my food options in advance. If I hadn't done that, I can honestly tell you, I probably would have stopped for a burger or something worse along the way. Instead I have healthy options in my cooler in my car. Knowing I would be in the car for at least 6 hours out of my day, I decided that the first thing I had to do was to make sure there was water with me. When I drive I need coffee to keep me going, so in order to counteract that coffee my body needs water. Let's not forget, I still have to get my normal water intake for the day (about 3 ltrs). Because I am drinking so much today, some of it is flavoured.  I usually do not drink flavoured water,so it is my treat. The next thing I planned for were my snacks. I packed pre-measured bags of almonds and a couple clementines for my morning snack. In my cooler I have a chicken wrap, cheese, Greek yogurt, apple slices, peanut butter and a boiled egg. Plenty of food to get me home without stopping for muffin or donut! Sure, I am stopping for coffee, but that is it. I am stocked up on healthy prepared options. Everything is easy to grab in the car and leaves me no excuse for cheating. It is not easy, and yes, spending all the prep time on myself seems selfish at times. But I am worth the effort, my good food choices today will continue to lead me on a path to a healthier life. Planning ahead for these type of situations makes a huge difference. I used to think that I made fairly healthy choices when eating meals, but when you're busy,you don't always make the best choices. When planning ahead, you can have healthy options available and easier than ordering a cookie to go with that coffee. Have a great week, and remember...plan, plan and plan some more!

Check out my other #80lbJourney Posts here: