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Monday, August 29, 2011

Are Your Ripples Positive?

Like a pebble dropped into a pond
our lives affect many, today and beyond,
causing ripples with what we say
in those we touch throughout the day.
One kind word or action well done
can change the world for someone.
Our thoughts, opinions, and attitudes
are absorbed by all, influencing moods.
Never underestimate the power of words,
'cause what is said is always heard,
rippling waves through space and time,
so keep speech positive and actions kind.

"Rippling Waves" from Awakening Perception
 Everyday we start ripples that affect more people than we will ever know. Please make your ripples something you want amplified, because they are.What are you amplifying to the world today?
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Is Your Life Balanced?

BALANCE- Be aware of the importance of balance. Too much or too little time spent working , being alone, playing video games, TV, web surfing, time spent on relationships, self improvement, health, finances, etc will throw the rest of life off balance. Evaluate your life. Is something way off balance compared to the rest of your activities? See if you can bring more balance to your schedule and you'll be amazed at how much more you will accomplish, and how much better you'll feel.
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Worried Woman

(photo from

There once was a woman who had two sons. The first son was a farmer and the second was a brick maker. During the rainy season, she lamented and cried because the brick maker couldn't make his bricks. During the dry season, she complained and worried that her son's crops would dry up and burn. Everyday she would be worried about one of her sons. One day a wise old monk came to town. The worried woman asked the wise monk how she can find peace and happiness when each day she is worried about one son or the other. The wise monk said, "On the days of rain, rejoice for your son's crops as his fields are being blessed with water to yield a plentiful harvest! On the days of sun, rejoice in the heat of the sun baking down on your son's bricks, allowing him to be more productive in his brick making business." From that day forward, the woman was happy everyday. (based on an old Buddhist tale)
What you focus on affects your level of happiness or misery. 
Choose Happiness my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Be a Helping Hand

So many times when we take the focus off of ourselves and work to help others, our own problems shrink in size!~Angie Hoover Lawson

This is great advice. Do you feel overwhelmed with your own problems? Or feel like your in a "funk"? Offer to help someone in need.  Become aware of the when people could use some help.  There are so many opportunities to be of service.  It can be as simple as giving someone a ride to the store or offering to do yard work to the old widow next door. Even just bringing someone a warm meal or a plate of cookies can make their whole day brighter. When we pay attention to the needs of others, we're not only helping them, we are helping ourselves in the process. It opens our heart which allows us to feel more love.  Lift the spirits of two people, give someone a helping hand today!
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Monday, August 22, 2011

Bring Back the Family Dinner

One simple step to enjoying life is getting together with other people to share a delicious meal. This used to be the norm in most households. Families would eat together at dinnertime, sharing experiences of their day, elders passing down stories and wisdom to the younger generation. When I was growing up, we ate breakfast and dinner together on most days. When I had children of my own, I made it a point to have most dinners together as a family.  The TV was off, and the conversations were on!  
Family gatherings, which are the birthday parties, big Sunday dinners, holiday feasts, and such are also a dying art of human socializing. My husband's family of 11 children used to have a Sunday dinner at the Grandma's house every week. Of course this is back when people would actually take one day off a week to be with their family and friends, connect with God, and spend time in nature. Our culture is becoming so over complicated that people are forgetting how to just relax and be with each other without outside distractions and entertainment.
 If we make it a priority, we can bring back the family dinner. It takes a bit more scheduling, but people always make time for what they really want to do in life. I think this is one of those things worth making an effort to do on a regular basis.  Make a habit of sharing at least one meal a day with family or friends. It builds stronger bonds and makes a lifetime of memories. 
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Saturday, August 20, 2011

BE Desireless

DESIRE LESS, ALLOW MORE. When we come from a mindset of wants and desires it reinforces a "lacking" mentality. When we come from a mindset of being open and allowing, we are readying ourselves for action in alignment with our desires. It is a subtle difference of wording, but it makes a huge difference. For instance one could say, "I want to be in better physical shape." This statement is on...e of desire, but doesn't necessarily promote action. When reworded to say "I am allowing myself to live a healthier lifestyle and open to new physical activities.", the stage is set for action which will produce desired results. Another example: "I want to find a nice man to date." vs. "I am open to allowing a nice man to come into my life." That's it. Desire less, be open to allowing your dreams to manifest!
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Do You Blame Others?

DOES YOUR LIFE FEEL OUT OF CONTROL? The way to regain control is to take full responsibility for who you are and to stop blaming other people for your problems. When we place the blame on other people it takes the control to solve our problems away from us. Taking responsibility gives you the power to change what you don't like or isn't working. When we realize our own responsibility for our life it releases the resentment caused by blaming others. This is one of the first steps to major self transformation. You are not a victim unless you think you are. Remember, when you point a finger at someone, there are three fingers pointing back at you!   
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

A Feel Good Exercise

(photo from

Today, let us express our gratitude for life by sharing our appreciation for other people. Smile at strangers, hug the ones close to you, thank the grocery clerk, or call an old friend. The greatest gift we have is the gift of life. Honor that gift by spreading the feeling of appreciation wherever you go. This activity will raise your own spirits as well as those around you.  Truly what attitude you put out into the world is reflected back to you.  You will feel the positive energy with this exercise.
Be Happy, my Friends~
Laura Barrette Shannon

Thursday, August 11, 2011

What Do You See?

WHAT DO YOU SEE? The optical illusion above demonstrates that there is more than one way to look at things.  Our perceptions are filtered by our thoughts and attention.  The nature of your thoughts will affect the nature of your life. If you think about unfulfilled desires, drama, or the flaws in people, you will perceive more of the same. If you think about gratitude for what you have, peace in relationships, and the good in every person, then you will find that is exactly what life brings. Life is a mirror of your mind. You can't change what you see until you change how you're looking at it.  Take a close look at how you view life.  Do you like what you see?  If not, perhaps change the way you are looking at it, or change where you focus your attention.  You can't change the world, but you can change the way you see the world.
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Do You Judge Yourself?

DO YOU JUDGE YOURSELF? When we chastise ourselves it lowers our self esteem and leaves a feeling of sadness. The best way to stop those thoughts is to stop judging other people. It is when we can allow others to err and not focus on their imperfections that we release our own self judgement. By being more tolerant of others we begin to be more tolerant of our own shortcomings. Just like you, most people are doing the best they can with the state of mind they have in any given moment. Everyone has their own personal battles. Knowing this allows feelings of compassion to rise within you. Be kind to others and you will be kinder to yourself.
many blessings-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Boost Your Brain with Brushing!

DID YOU KNOW? Brushing your teeth with the opposite hand will strengthen your brain! When we change our routines and behaviors we activate different and underused neural pathways. This is called NEUROBICS. According to the website, to be a neurobic activity it must have one or more of the following:
1) Involve one or more of your senses in a novel context.
2) Engage your attention.
3) Break a routine activity in an unexpected, novel way

Here are a few Neurobic exercises to boost brain power:
*Using your opposite hand to use the computer mouse
*Getting dressed with your eyes closed
*Take a different route to work
*Listen to music while eating a new food
*Spend time in a new environment
*Eating with the opposite hand.

Besides boosting brain power, these neurobics also increase your ability to be present, paying attention to where you are and what you are doing.

Have a Happy Day! :)
Laura Barrette Shannon

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Are You Angry?

‎"You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger." ~ Buddha

When we allow our thoughts to dwell in anger, discontent, or injustice we are causing our own suffering. Anger, as all emotions, is a natural response to some situations. Feel the emotion, and then let it flow and let it go. We all did this when we were very young.  We would get upset, cry, scream, jump up and down, and then a few minutes later we would be onto something else, without dwelling on the past emotion.  Of course, as adults we can channel the anger in situational appropriate ways, but if you are alone, let it out in any way that you feel.  Then let it go. 

 When people stay with the emotion by repetitively rehashing the situation in their minds, suffering occurs. Anger itself is the demon that wields the punishment! Oh, that we could instantly feel the burning nature of anger like the burn of a hot coal, we would all avoid touching it again. There are many ways to extinguish the fire of this demon- the one that works best for me is taking a few slow deep breaths. This is instantly calming and allows your attention to move away from the angry thoughts. The fire of anger feeds on attention, don't feed it and it won't be able to burn you.
Many Blessings-
Laura Barrette Shannon

Monday, August 1, 2011

Do You Have the Time?

Art outside the Salvador Dali Museum, St Petersburg, FL

DO you have the time? Time is a strange concept. It seems like most people live their lives according to some sort of time schedule, usually attempting to squeeze in more time than there is. They say things like, "I don't have time." or "I wish there was more time." The problem isn't the amount of time in a day. Everyone has the same amount of time. The problem arises when people either agree to do too much because they have taken on more than they can handle, or they don't schedule enough, not making the time for what is important to them. 
Today, evaluate what is important to you and make sure that it is a priority on your schedule. Then, give yourself permission to let go of those activities that are of lesser importance to make room for what is. Enjoy your time doing the things you choose to do.
Be Happy, my Friends-
Laura Barrette Shannon