daily habits

Enjoy

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It is our tendency in daily life to become goal oriented. We know where we want to go, and we are very focused on getting there. At times, this may be useful, but often we forget to enjoy ourselves along the way. Thich Nhat Hanh “Making Space: Creating a Home Meditation Practice.”

While reading this book on creating a space and time in your home for meditation, I ran across this quote which really sums up what I go through on a daily basis. I have always been a very goal oriented, go-getter, list-maker type of person. There are many wonderful benefits to that, however, I feel that there is a great wisdom to enjoying the journey along the way to our goals.

Daily Life & Our Destination:

Part of feeling like we can stop to enjoy ourselves is organizing ourselves in our days and weeks so that we can build in time off, take time to rest, take time with family and friends. Here is an example of a recent overwhelm I was feeling because of so many events coming up and how I organized myself around it.

Recently because the holiday season is upon me and I am participating in a gluten free fest with a booth for a whole weekend, hosting a holiday bake sale, working at the farm and helping them with holiday specials, doing client work and more I became a bit overwhelmed by all that I needed to accomplish in the coming weeks. What did I do about this overwhelm? First, I listed every task that I needed to complete in the coming weeks including phone calls, emails, things to order, things to bake, things to freeze and dates to put on the calendar. Then, I did 4-5 items that took 5 minutes or less to accomplish and just got those done including ordering some things that I needed for the gluten free fest.

Next, I wrote down schedules for the weeks to come, wrote down the dates on the calendars, communicated with people through email and social media and created my holiday bake sale event including my offerings list. This left me feeling much more on top of and in control of the events to come up.

Enjoying Ourselves Along the Path:

I truly believe that once we are able to come up with a plan to deal with our overwhelm, then our brains are able to make room for enjoyment along our path. It is important to remind ourselves on a daily basis that the reason that we do all of these activities is the joy and satisfaction that they bring us along the way. Often, planning something is part of the fun. Imagining how your event will turn out, or what your book will be like when you finish writing it. Those are moments to savor and celebrate along the way.

Another way I love to enjoy myself along the path is to have events on my calendar like lunch or tea with friends, set up birthday celebrations and go to events around town. If there are events to look forward to, you are stepping down the path with glee.

You can also enjoy yourself daily along the path, not just looking forward to events on the weekend, but take breaks during the day to read a great book, have a cup of tea, take a walk outside, or simply close your eyes and imagine you are on a tropical island. There is so much joy to be had at every moment if we can stop to let ourselves enjoy it.

I would love to hear how you cure your overwhelm, and ways that you enjoy yourself along your path in life. Comment below or write to me at: info@thecheerychef.com

With lots of love,

Trista

Leaving Room for Miracles

Leave Room for Miracles

I have always been a planner. I am not sure where this trait came from but I have always loved to plan ahead, set and reach goals. I love to have events like summer vacation blocked off on our calendar months ahead of time. I love to have things to look forward to and to add details to. I have a huge wall calendar and each week I add on appointments, meals I'm cooking and more. I keep track of my exercise there as well with star stickers! I love planning! 

However, with all of the changes to my business going on, I have found that although I love to plan, it is important to leave room for miracles. So many times a difficult, unexpected change in our lives can come about. At that moment we think it's the worst thing that can be happening to us. We didn't plan on this! It is those events that really turn into miracles if we are awake and ready to see them. When my meal service platform, Josephine.com announced their shutdown at the end of March I had already planned meals out till the end of April. Now I see though that this unplanned event is really such a blessing to me, to my family and to my community. 

Although I am a planner, slowly I am learning to leave some space for miracles in my life. Those little things that happen that open doors and illuminate the path that I have been searching for. Last year I decided that I wanted to open my own cafe. I know it is a long road to get there and many changes and many challenges are ahead but in my heart I know it's what I've always been meant to do. I get such joy from cooking for others and hearing how they loved their meals. My favorite part of the day is serving people meals, whether it be clients or my own family- I love spreading the love and joy through food. I had thought about working in a cafe/coffee shop to gain experience. Recently I have been talking to a local coffee shop and they are going to give me an opportunity to cook and bake in their shop. This will give me the chance to learn how a coffee shop/cafe runs and all of the ins and outs of the business. I will be able to help this shop expand their food options and broaden their horizons. This leads me to the conclusion that because I put this idea and energy out there, it came back to me and I will give back to it through my work. 

Over the past 2-3 years I have become a more spiritual person because of the way that I have chosen to view the world and through my studies. I truly believe that miracles happen in our daily lives and we will see them if we are open to them. In my bathroom I have a framed sign that says "Miracles are Happening." At first this sign said "Good Things are Happening." But, my son told me to put "Miracles" instead. I think he was right! 

I believe that when you put your whole heart into something, the right people, places and circumstances will come into place for you. You have to leave an open space in your heart, mind and calendar for these things to happen. I feel like things are beginning to shift, the path is lighting up for me (just like the ones they tell you about in the aisle of an airplane) and I am finding my way towards my cafe. I am open to new and exciting things happening every day. 

Are you open to leaving room for miracles? I'd love to hear from you! 

My Daily Routines- Building Daily Habits that Move You Toward Your Goals!

My daily routines- Building Daily Habits that Move You Toward Your Goals!

Many times life can really seem like such a crazy juggling act, or a giant puzzle. It is sometimes the opposite of the calming, serene scene pictured above from my afternoon tea. In our minds there are so many moving pieces, so many things we want to accomplish, so many people we want to help, so many places we want to go and so many tasks we must get done in order to move forward. I still sometimes have "mind-storms" where tons of different tasks come to mind, and I find I need to quiet that storm and refocus to figure out what to do next. 

Over this step by step journey of creating The Cheery Chef, of discovering who I really am, of concentrating on my craft so that I can share it with others I have found that the best way to calm the storm is to create daily habits that become automatic and move me towards my goals. There are now set numbers of things that I do daily, weekly and monthly that move me in the direction I want to go. This is slow, incremental success, but it is the best kind.  This is not to say this journey has been easy, in fact, it has been one of the hardest things I have ever done. I find myself juggling business tasks with family tasks and lots of other things that love to do to help others. However, I find peace in my routines, even when I have to shift my schedule when my son gets sick, I have appointments to go to or other things come up. Now I have a way to deal with those things too, and calmly move on with my work. 

In this post I want to share with you my 3 sets of habits. This may help you develop your sets of habits as well. 

Daily Habits: 

Monday to Friday, I have several habits that help me go through my morning. I wake up at around 4:30am in order to get these done. I make it a priority. This may not work for everyone, but I am very much a morning person and it really works for me and energizes me for the rest of the day. I am still trying to figure out how to handle the weekends. I do like to sleep in a bit, but then I really miss easing into the day with my morning ritual. So, I am still experimenting on how best to create a weekend morning habit. I think I will start to try waking up a bit later, however earlier than my husband and son so I can have a bit of quiet time before they wake up. 

Here are the things that I do before my son gets up & ready for school during the week: 

1. 5 minutes of meditation

2. Affirmations- a list to help me energize for the day

3. Read for 20 minutes

4. Write down 10 ideas

5. Write in my Freedom Journal* about my goal for the day

6. Put a load of laundry in

7. Exercise

8. Get dressed/ready

9. Post to my Cheery Chef Facebook Page

10. Send a short message to my best friend in Mexico

*You can learn more about the Freedom Journal in the link below. It is a great tool to help you accomplish a big goal in 100 days. Make sure to check it out! 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/eofire/the-freedom-journal-accomplish-your-1-goal-in-100

 

Later on in the day I have these other habits: 

1. Post to Instagram.

2.  No social media or email between 9am-12 noon.

3. Do my Freedom Journal task to move me towards my 100-day goal.

4. Write about my progress in the Freedom Journal in the evening. 

 

Weekly Habits/Theme Days:  

These habits help me stay on top of my content creation and the inner workings of my business and platform that I am building. It is important to have a schedule every week and it makes it easy because I can "plug-in" these habits into my schedule to make sure that they get done. I want to have a well-rounded work week where I am fitting in: writing, communications, meeting in person with people, pro-development and more. 

1. Post 2 blog posts per week.

2.Write 3 blog posts per week so that I have some extras to fall back on.

3. Create 3 new recipes per week.

4. Send out 1 newsletter per week.

5. Send 3 emails out per week to places where I can do cooking demos or other people I can partner with, etc.

6. Study 2 $100 MBA lessons per week. 

7. Get to one networking event per week. 

Another thing that I do is something that I learned from Kate Erickson from the podcast "Kate's Take-The EO Fire Audio blog." This is: theming days. I love this concept because it means that I don't usually have to move from one task in the kitchen to another on the computer in one day. It means I can really focus and concentrate on my tasks. Now, there are some weeks where I may have to schedule an appointment on one of my theme days, or something comes up that I need to take care of. I try to avoid this, but sometimes it happens. So, in these cases I try to set aside other times to do my weekly habits and readjust. 

Here is a link to the podcast that talks about theming your days: 

http://katestake.libsyn.com/59-part-ii-becoming-more-efficient-with-theming-your-days

Here are my theme days: 

Mondays: Kitchen Day! 

Tuesdays: Writing Day!

Wednesdays: Catch up Day! On this day I sometimes schedule appointments or catch up on other tasks. 

Thursdays: Pro Development Day! 

Fridays: Networking/Social Day! 

 

Monthly Habits: 

These habits are mostly personal. I really want to be a well-rounded person that makes time to spend with others because those are the most cherished times. I love to get together with friends for lunch, go on date night with my husband or with my mom and family for other events as well. The pedicure is my monthly treat because with lots of cooking I am on my feet a lot! I really want to get out and about in the community as well so I work on setting up free cooking demos every month. 

1. Get together with friends.

2. Get together with family.

3. Get a pedicure.

4. Go on a date night with my husband. 

5. Do 1-2 community cooking demos per month. 

To close, I would like to say that I, like everyone else everywhere am a "work in progress." Every day I am learning, adjusting and figuring out how best to spend my time so that I can help and reach the most people, make a difference and an impact on the world. It is an organic process, always moving, changing. There have been times I have failed someone, or needed to re-prioritize but didn't. I learn from these mistakes and try to do better next time. That is what life is all about. Everyone and everything is our teacher. We have to learn what we can to be just a little bit better each day, to shine a little more light on the world. 

I want to encourage you to commit to your craft, to get up and do something that makes your heart sing on a regular basis. There will be challenges. There will be roadblocks. There will be heartbreak. This is the journey. But, in this journey of the spirit, I am learning that the hardest things to accomplish are also the most beautiful and precious. Give it your best! Give it your all! We all want to see what you have in your heart! 

I thank you with all of my heart and hope that you have an amazing day! Onward and upward we go!