Commentary #88: “Make Your Own MAGIC and Manifest Your DREAM LIFE”

The quoted words in the title of this blog post comes from a relatively recent episode of the That Smart Hustle podcast by author Kristen Martin. I haven’t read any of her books yet, though I plan to change that sooner rather than later. I discovered her Facebook page, and then stumbled upon to her podcast. I subscribed, went all the way back to Episode 1, and just fell in love.

That Smart Hustle - Soundcloud

Image Credit: Soundcloud

I love her voice, her style, and her podcast format. They’re short, sweet, and simple.

Granted, she does things very differently than I do. But, what she shares in her podcast episodes are always encouraging and inspiring to me.

I’m not “into” or “practice” certain things such as the phases of the moon, crystals, tarot, and so on. I know people who do a combination of things like this, and I’m not arguing against any of it. As a Christian, I pray. However, I really like the idea of manifestation. And, I think I’m already doing it, and didn’t even realize it.

In this episode, Kristen expands upon manifesting, and how she does it in her life. It’s based on the law of attraction. Focus on something to bring it into your reality. There are several ways to accomplish this: Meditation, visualization, or using your conscious and subconsicous to focus on this thing, or goal, or whatever it may be.

Once you’ve pick the thing or goal to manifest, then you have to take action. As an example, if you want to get a new job or a promotion, then you focus on that job or promotion, visualize it, and then clean up your resume, submit the applications, or climb the ladder toward that promotion. It takes effort, and hard work, but it pays off.

For me, I “accidentally” manifested the completion of the first draft of my first novel. I was tired of struggling with the ending of the book, and I decided I just needed to finish it, no matter what it took. When I saved the draft on March 30th, the feelings of elation, pride, and joy I had were remarkable. I practically jumped up and down in my living room. I posted about it on Facebook, and the response and feedback I received was absolutely incredible. I realized how many people were cheering for me, how proud they were, and how many are looking forward to the book when it’s ready to be published. I’m still blown away by it all, and here we are nearly three weeks after I finished it.

Am I manifesting anything new, you may ask?

Yes, I am!

  1. Being debt-free
  2. Completing the first draft of my second novel

These two things are huge in my universe right now. I just took major action on #1 today, and it’s definitely a step in the right direction after a lot of negative thoughts, and a huge emotional breakdown between yesterday and this morning.

I’ve been actively participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this month for #2, and I feel so good with the progress I’ve made thus far. And we’re only 11 days into the month!

As I write this post, I just realized the Monthly Goals posts I make here on the blog are also forms of manifestation. I set those goals, and having them in writing on the first day of every month allows me to take action on them immediately, or work on them throughout that month. And, I’m able to look back on them whenever I want, to remind myself of the goals, and invest more time, energy, or whatever it is to accomplish those goals.

Now, why is “dream life” capitalized in the title?

Well, Kristen says in the podcast that you can use manifestation to help you build your actual dream life. I love this idea. She talks about making a list of everything you dream about that you want in life: What job do you have, what car are you driving, what are you wearing, what house do you live in, what state or country do you live in, and so on.

I will be working on this in my personal journal, and I’m pretty stinking excited about it already. If you’re interested in doing this yourself, think of it as your “vision board,” but those visions are achievable. Making this list, using techniques like this, will help me make those dreams a reality.

All that said, I still pray to God. As a Christian, that’s a given for me every day. That won’t change a bit.

And something special has been happening at my church that I haven’t talked about very much. As a congregation, we have a Breakthrough Prayer we are challenged to pray every day at either 5:17 a.m. or 5:17 p.m. The reason 5:17 is significant is that’s our Bible verse, 2 Corinthians 5:17, for the Next Level Innovations (NLI) process we are embarking upon for the next three years.

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here!

How fitting that our church is New Creation United Methodist Church.

In a way, NLI is another form of manifestation. The three-year process has a series of goals and visualizations, and it takes effort and action from everyone involved to make it successful. I love the mantra: Going from good to GREAT.

I know, for me, since we started this process, I’ve already experienced a few breakthroughs, and I can only imagine there are many more to come.

Here’s the Breakthrough Prayer:

Almighty God, today breakthrough in our lives and in our church. Make us a new creation. Transform us by the power and presence of your Holy Spirit. Show us how to make a difference in our community and the world. Give us boldness to follow where You lead. Amen.


Resources


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #163: April Goals

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Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

Hello, April! It’s good to see you. Thank you for bringing the new flowers and leaves! Once Mother Nature decides to cooperate with consistently warmer temperatures, I’ll be very happy!


Here are my goals for the month of April:

  1. Donate blood.
  2. Celebrate Dad’s birthday!
  3. See Shazam!
  4. See Avengers: Endgame.
  5. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo, April 2019.
  6. Enjoy time with Emily and Matt.
  7. Continue work on the attached garage.
  8. Participate in Didi’s WIP Challenge for April.
  9. Take multiple boxes of books and DVDs to 2nd and Charles for consignment.
  10. Continue work on my office.
  11. Create two planters for our front stoop with mosquito-repellent plants.

Do you have any goals for the month of April? Let me know in the comments!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #162: March Goals Recap

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Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

Hello, spring! And it’s amazing how quickly a month can pass!

Here’s the link to my March Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. Volunteer with District Orchestra Festival. — Accomplished!
  2. Complete the Romantic Movies daily blog challenge. — Accomplished!
  3. See Captain Marvel. — Accomplished!
  4. See Alita: Battle Angel. — Accomplished!
  5. Write at least 500 words toward the ending of my 2012 WIP. — Accomplished!
  6. Change the POV of my 2013 WIP. — Semi-Achieved.
  7. Finalize my plans for Camp NaNoWriMo, April 2019. — Accomplished!
  8. Participate in Didi’s WIP Challenge for March. — Accomplished!
  9. Order my new glasses. — Did not accomplish.
  10. Read at least two books. — Semi-Achieved.

I had so much fun at the District Orchestra Festival on Saturday, March 2nd. It was great to help out several schools, listen to great performances, and catch up with my orchestra teacher, Ms. Kringel!

We saw Alita: Battle Angel with Nick and Mia in Virginia Beach, I think it was the first weekend of March. It was a decent movie. I really enjoyed Rosa Salazar’s performance.

Al and I went to see Captain Marvel the weekend it opened. I LOVED IT! Brie Larson is awesome, and there were so many 1990s nostalgia moments! Is it my favorite movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)? No. But, it was such a fun ride!

I can’t wait to start Camp NaNoWriMo 2019 tomorrow! Look for a blog post about that soon!

I love Didi’s WIP challenges. Here’s my link to my entry to March’s challenge.

I simply didn’t have the money on hand for my new glasses this month. I’m thankful I have an abundance of contact lenses and good spare glasses. Hopefully I’ll be able to buy them in April.

I finished one book toward the end of March, and started reading the second last week. I’m about 25 pages into it now. My Book Review will be published soon!

I’m thrilled to announce that not only did I surpass my writing goal of 500 words, I finally FINISHED THE FIRST DRAFT!! I proclaimed my elation on Facebook last night. It’s hard to believe this all started with a crazy idea in the fall of 2012. That led to my first-ever NaNoWriMo, participating in Camp NaNoWriMo for the first time last year, and here we are, about 6 1/2 years later!

  • Previous word count: 50,461
  • Final word count, first draft: 51,960
  • Words written in March: 1,499

Did you have any goals for the month of March?

Come back tomorrow to see my April Goals!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #160: March Goals

march goals

Image Credit: East Willow Grove

Hello, March! It’s so nice to see you!


Here are my goals for the month of March:

  1. Volunteer with District Orchestra Festival.
  2. Complete the Romantic Movies daily blog challenge.
  3. See Captain Marvel.
  4. See Alita: Battle Angel.
  5. Write at least 500 words toward the ending of my 2012 WIP.
  6. Change the POV of my 2013 WIP.
  7. Finalize my plans for Camp NaNoWriMo, April 2019.
  8. Participate in Didi’s WIP Challenge for March.
  9. Order my new glasses.
  10. Read at least two books.

Do you have any goals for the month of March? Let me know in the comments!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #159: February Goals Recap

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Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

February just zoomed by!

Here’s the link to my February Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. Order my new glasses. — Did not accomplish.
  2. Donate blood. — Accomplished!
  3. Finally finish the first draft of my 2012 WIP! — Did not accomplish.
  4. Make journaling a daily habit / practice. — Accomplished!
  5. Create my own media kit. — Did not accomplish.
  6. Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Al. — Accomplished!
  7. Take unused / unwanted clothes to Clothes Mentor. — Did not accomplish.
  8. Write more Commentary posts. — Semi-Achieved.
  9. Celebrate Drew’s 30th birthday! — Accomplished!
  10. Take unwanted / duplicate American Girl items to Once Upon A Child. — Did not accomplish.

Here’s the breakdown:

Order my new glasses. — Did not accomplish.

  • As much as I wanted to do this, I didn’t have the funds to make it happen this month.

Donate blood. — Accomplished!

  • Yay! I got by with the skin of my teeth with my iron, but I did it. It was also my 50th donation! I started donating blood in 2005 after I turned 17. The minimum age now is 16, with parent permission.

Finally finish the first draft of my 2012 WIP! — Did not accomplish.

  • I didn’t touch it at all!

Make journaling a daily habit / practice. — Accomplished!

  • I don’t have a photo on hand, but I bought a super pretty journal at Target and worked hard to write in it every day. I’ve already noticed a huge difference in my anxiety levels!

Create my own media kit. — Did not accomplish.

  • I didn’t make time for this at all.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Al. — Accomplished!

  • Since Valentine’s Day fell on a Thursday this year, we kept it simple. I ordered steaks and all the fixings from Texas Roadhouse online, and I picked it up on the way home. We enjoyed it immensely.

Take unused / unwanted clothes to Clothes Mentor. — Did not accomplish.

  • My goal is to do this in March. My pile is overflowing!

Write more Commentary posts. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I wrote one: Commentary #83

Celebrate Drew’s 30th birthday! — Accomplished!

  • We drove up to Richmond on Saturday, February 16th, to celebrate at Carini’s Italian restaurant. More than 20 people were there! Most importantly, Drew had a wonderful time, and made a heartfelt speech to everyone. We enjoyed the pizza, cake, and catching up with everyone. It felt like a mini-college reunion!

Take unwanted / duplicate American Girl items to Once Upon A Child. — Did not accomplish.

  • I want to divide my stash between my local Once Upon A Child and Girl AGain in White Plains, New York.

Final Thoughts

  • I was able to put Accomplished next to four out of 10 goals!
  • The one goal that was Semi-Achieved: I was a busy blogger this month! Just not with that type of post, haha.
  • The five goals I did not accomplish: Most of this was related to time, and partially money.

What about you? Did you have any goals for the month of February?

Come back tomorrow to see my March Goals!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #158: February Goals

BeautyBeyondBones

Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

Welcome to February! It’s Valentine’s month!


Here are my goals for the month of February:

  1. Order my new glasses.
  2. Donate blood.
  3. Finally finish the first draft of my 2012 WIP!
  4. Make journaling a daily habit / practice.
  5. Create my own media kit.
  6. Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Al.
  7. Take unused / unwanted clothes to Clothes Mentor.
  8. Write more Commentary posts.
  9. Celebrate Drew’s 30th birthday!
  10. Take unwanted / duplicate American Girl items to Once Upon A Child.

Here’s the breakdown:

Order my new glasses.

  • I’m excited to get my first pair from Warby Parker!

Donate blood.

  • The next blood drive is Saturday, February 2nd.
  • If you are able, please donate when you can. The horrible winter weather in the U.S. has cancelled so many blood drives!

Finally finish the first draft of my 2012 WIP!

  • I’ve been jotting down a few ideas since the beginning of the year, and I feel confident that I will finish the story this month!

Make journaling a daily habit / practice.

  • I’ve journaled on and off for years, and I really want to get back into it. I just bought a beautiful notebook at Target, and I can’t wait to fill it up!
  • This goal was partially inspired by author Kristen Martin talking about her journaling practice on her podcast, “That Smart Hustle.”

Create my own media kit.

  • Inspired by Brianna Marie Lifestyle’s recent post, I want to make this happen!

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Al.

  • We haven’t even talked about Valentine’s Day yet!

Take unused / unwanted clothes to Clothes Mentor.

  • I have a huge pile of clothes that don’t meet Darby’s current consignment guidelines. There’s a Clothes Mentor location near my house, so I want to see if they will take them.

Write more Commentary posts.

  • I have several ideas for Commentary posts. I just need to write and schedule them.

Celebrate Drew’s 30th birthday!

  • Drew is one of my good friends from college. We’ve been invited to his 30th birthday bash this month. We can’t wait to celebrate! It’s been more than two years since we’ve seen him.

Take unwanted / duplicate American Girl items to Once Upon A Child.

  • In the same vein as Clothes Mentor, I want to take the big box of American Girl items to the new Once Upon A Child location and see if they will take them. Consignment is fun!

Do you have any goals for the month of February?

If so, I’d love to hear about them!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #157: January Goals Recap

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Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

January was a very busy month! I can’t believe we’re a full month into 2019!

Here’s the link to my January Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. Help Al maintain our new and improved budget spreadsheet. — Accomplished!
  2. Check out savings and investing apps. — Accomplished!
  3. Clear the clutter in my Lady Lounge. — Semi-Achieved.
  4. Donate, donate, donate. — Accomplished!
  5. Continue work on my 2013 WIP. — Semi-Achieved.
  6. Reset our cleaning schedule. — Accomplished!
  7. Get back on track with The ABC Book Challenge posts. — Accomplished!

Here’s the breakdown:

Help Al maintain our new and improved budget spreadsheet. — Accomplished!

  • Al created a Google Doc, and we take turns editing it!

Check out savings and investing apps. — Accomplished!

  • I downloaded ibotta!
  • I’m still researching Robin Hood, but I like what I see.

Clear the clutter in my Lady Lounge. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I’m getting there, piece by piece. I’ve worked on it as much as I could this month, and I’ve been better about separating things to recycle, trash, and shred.

Donate, donate, donate. — Accomplished!

  • I made a couple of trips! I think I cleared out six boxes full of stuff!
  • I also sent a box of clothes to Darby for consignment.
  • Up next: Taking clothes to Clothes Mentor!

Continue work on my 2013 WIP. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I only wrote about 200 new words, but I also decided to change the overall POV.

Reset our cleaning schedule. — Accomplished!

  • The calendar is back on track now. And I’m less stressed!

Get back on track with The ABC Book Challenge posts. — Accomplished!

  • I posted every Monday in January!
  • Look for another post on Monday!

Final Thoughts

  • I was able to put Accomplished next to five out of seven goals!
  • The two goals that were Semi-Achieved: These were directly related to time and effort.

What about you? Did you have any goals for the month of January?

Come back tomorrow to see my February Goals!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂