Greetings Dear Reader,

Firstly, I’m grateful for:

  1. I had the day off and got some much needed sleep.
  2. I hung out with a new friend the other day and had a wonderful time.
  3. Snacks are a thing that exist.

My hope for this year is that I will gain more confidence.

I realized that ever since I was a child, I was afraid of even my own existence. Apologizing for things that warranted no guilt and walking on eggshells for no reason.

I don’t know when it began but I’ve decided that it needs to stop.

So this years focus is cultivating confidence and making peace with myself. I know that I am kind to others and I would never go out of my way to antagonize others. At the same time, it’s okay to be myself. To have my high energy, to laugh, to joke, to say what I mean and mean what I say. It’s okay to be that person even if it makes others uncomfortable.

I think that too often, people pretend to be something that doesn’t align with who they really are. I never want to be that person anymore. I enjoy living authentically and not allowing bad energy into my life.

At work, in relationships, and in life. In general people like that I’m honest and open but I think this year I need to turn that energy inwards.

To be honest and open with myself. To be kind and considerate to myself. To not overburden myself with too much and genuinely cultivate the relationship I have with me.

Although I’m still figuring out what that means, I’m hopeful I can figure it out. I hope you will also take some time to love yourself today Dear Reader.

Warm Regards,

Shannon M.

I Hate Running

Good evening Dear Reader,

Firstly, I’m grateful for:

  1. I found inspiration to write more poetry.
  2. I learned something new about myself.
  3. Andrew gave me a big hug today.

That being said, recently I met a very amazing woman who is old enough to be my mother with a body better than mine. She agreed to become my fitness coach to help me reach my goals. The first thing she asked was if I ran.

Anyone who knows me knows that running does not mix well with me. I am a certified couch potato and I don’t even run for the bus.

She laughed and kindly informed me, running would be apart of my regimen. I thought ‘why not’. There are plenty of things I’ve tried. Despite hating running with a burning passion I figured I’ve never really given it an honest chance.

So 3 weeks ago I started my running journey. My coach wants me to run a mile a day. Now that may sound easy but to a cute couch potato, it’s intense. Because I haven’t ran since high school I figured I’d have to build my way up to that.

Week one: I did three runs

Week two: I did four runs

Week three: I did 5 runs and I was able to run the whole mile without stopping.

This week I plan on going on 6 runs.

I noticed a few things about myself while running. It’s not as bad and soul sucking as I thought. I felt very proud of myself by finishing. As well, it’s getting easier as time goes on.

During one of my runs, I found myself wanting to give up because I felt myself being weighed down with negative thoughts. Things like “I’m all alone” or “I can’t do this” etc. I wanted to stop and return home.

Instead there was a little click in my head. I thought that I’m never really alone because I can count on myself. That thought alone made me keep pushing forward. It gave me a little speck of peace which, going forward through this week has been helpful so far. The thought that I’ll always have myself and as long as I love and support me, that’s all that matters.

Sadly we come to this world and leave this world alone. You have to know yourself better than anyone else. So it’s better to make amends with your demons, and love yourself fully because it is the most sacred relationship you will ever have.

Now I’m not saying running is making me love myself. However, had I not went on that run at that time on that day, perhaps that particular thought wouldn’t have crossed my mind.

In any case, I hope you have a great evening dear reader.

Warm Regards,

Shannon M.

The Desire to Do Everything

Good evening Dear Reader,

Firstly, I’m grateful,

1. I found a very nice woman who has become my editor. Shes been ever so patient with me as we work on my first self help book.

2. I found time to write today.

3. My personal trainer has been very supportive in helping me reach my goals.

I believe everyone has passion. Somewhere inside there is a fire and life is about finding what ignites you. I wholeheartedly believe that.

I consider myself lucky because I knew very young what my passion was: writing. When I was too old to be read to at night, and after lights out, I would make up stories in my head. Every night I would add on a little more to the story. It made me happy. It still makes me happy.

For some people it isn’t easy and to you I say that if it hasn’t jumped out at you, you have to search for it.

“How do you do that?” You may wonder.

Let me first tell you what passion feels like.

Passion is a little bubble is inside your heart when you’re doing the thing.

Passion is the pride you feel while engaging in the thing.

Passion is the satisfaction you feel even if you’ve worked at the thing for too many hours.

If you can still smile about it afterwards, it may be your passion.

Now, you find what you’re passionate about by trying different things. By going out and exploring what’s out there.

Now again, I may be lucky. I was very sheltered growing up. One one hand it kept me safe. Ignorant but safe nonetheless. On the other hand, when I left home, I had such a desire to try all the things I could.

As a full fledged adult, I find myself exploring and experiencing life more than the average person.

When you explore life, you’ll find things that make you feel good. They will spark that little bubble inside you. You’re most likely not going to find it sitting at home all day everyday.

Take a class, join a meet up, do something outside the mundane and search for that which fuels you.

When your passion is at the core of your life, you will find that you can tap into that passion with anything.

Your passion will spill over into your work and your relationships. You will become a “passionate person” and live a more grounded life.

It’s an amazing place to be and I encourage any and every one to do a little soul searching and find what makes their heart happy.

I hope you’ve had an amazing day dear reader. Get some rest and I’ll see you next time.

Warm regards,

Shannon M.

New Year, New me?

Check me out on my other platforms and social media.

Good evening Dear Reader,

Firstly, today I’m grateful for:

  1. Andrew and I went on a micro date. We went to a cafe to get boba and played connect four. It was fun and reminded me that even after 5 years, it still feels like the cupcake stage sometimes.
  2. I met a new friend and was able to vent to her about some of the things on my head. Her energy was wonderful and I was able to work through some difficult feelings.
  3. I had a great cry last night and what was left over was more space to fill with motivation today.

So far 2020 is going well, relatively speaking. I’m partway through my Instagram challenges, I’ve made a little commission off of the poetry books, and I have more stories to showcase.

I have had some high highs and my first low low of the year. Although it was not fun in the moment, today I’m feeling a bit refreshed.

The first couple of weeks of January have shown me that there are many things that I want to do and I need some serious reorganization in order to accomplish them.

On one hand I have my day job goals. At my hotel, we are going through some changes. I’m trying to be a champion of implementing positive ways to improve efficiency and communication between the different departments. I’ll be honest, it is difficult.

However, this is my specialty. I’m an emotional analytic. By that I mean when I think about how to make improvements, I take into account a variety of factors. Ease of implementation, impact on those who will be effected, varying personalities, etc. in order to find a suitable solution that will best help the team. This is a skill I’ve cultivated living with a large and very demanding family life. I thrive with this sort of task but again, it can be a bit challenging.

On the other hand I have my writing career. It is my calling and I want to thrive as a writer. The problem is that there are two types of writing for me.

  1. There is the creative type: poems and stories. I’m good at that but after researching it seems this type of writing has the potential to make money after X time.
  2. There is the money-making type: paid blog posts, articles, freelance gigs, content mills, technical writing, etc. For this type, I do have experience in, but I’ve been struggling to focus on getting more work.

There’s only 24 hours in a day and trying to take on all the work goals I have as well as things like health, learning, and hobby-related goals is a challenge to say the least.

The last few days have caused me to reflect.

I know I CAN do it. The question is HOW.

How can I get it all done? How can I dig deeper to find the energy and motivation? How can I move forward while still being gentle and authentic?

Though I do not have the answers, a small part of me is excited.

Secretly, dear reader, I love a challenge. The idea of being under pressure and yet thriving is somewhat appealing.

As I figure things out, I’m just going to try. See what works. See what patterns work best for me. Research different routines.

At the end of the day, I live a life by my design and I can change things at anytime. I encourage you too, dear reader to live a life by your design.

Warm Regards,

Shannon M.

A Roll

Good morning Dear Reader,

Firstly I am grateful

1. That Z publishing liked my poetry enough to publish it in their book.

2. That I have found a my creative writing niche: fantasy and poetry.

3. That Andrew supports my dream. Having him tell me I can do it even when I doubt myself is amazing.

So there is a weekly contest by Reedsy. Every week they have 5 prompts and if you win, there’s a prize for $50.

A few weeks ago, I submitted two stories. One of them even got shortlisted.

Last week I decided to challenge myself. Instead of submitting to one prompt, I wanted to submit something to each of the prompts. So last week I submitted 5 stories.

I discovered that I am a fantasy writer. My extra challenge was to make each story exist within my fantasy world for the Epic I’m writing. Each story had to take place at someplace in the story world.

When I framed it that way, it wa much easier to come up with a story.

This is the 2nd week of my DIY writing challenge and I am 4/5.

I’ve gotten up at 5 every morning for the past 5 weeks now focusing on my writing career. So every morning these past 2 weeks I’ve been writing short stories and I’m loving it!

Admittedly I’m still searching for balance. I didnt blog at all last week because I couldn’t find time.

My next goal is to figure out how blogging and poetry and stories and engaging with the writing community will all fit in. As well the other non-writing related goals fit in 😅

For now, I’m trying different things to see what works and what doesn’t and I’m hopeful I’ll find a good routine soon.

I hope that you can also cultivate some motivation today dear reader.

Warm Regards,

Shannon M.

An Unplanned Adventure

Good morning Dear Reader,

Firstly, I am grateful:

1. I have amazing coworkers who make my day job all the more pleasant.

2. That I’ve been enjoying a wave of creative motivation and wrote 5 short stories last week.

3. That I have Andrew, who has been a wonderful boyfriend, confidant, and motivator.

So this was my original plan:

Go to the company Christmas party, stay in a hotel for 2 nights and write until I couldn’t anymore. I wanted to combine my yearly writer’s retreat and the staycation all together.

It was going to be great.

Instead though, what I got was a lot of downtime, quality time with Andrew and some self-reflection. I did do a little writing but not at all the amount I was planning.

It wasn’t the weekend I’d expected or planned but it was a high quality time.

A part of me was a little disappointed in myself. Usually on these trips, I wake up super early, and write for an hour, read for an hour, write for an hour, study the craft, etc. etc. It’s usually much more rigorous.

Yet, I had an amazing time. These past two days were more about connecting with my partner than writing and I loved it. We’ve been together for 5 years but these past two days reminded us both of our “cupcake phase” with little kisses on the cheek and “I love yous” sprinkled throughout the day. We talked about our future. He told me he was proud of me for being so dedicated to my dream. It was so transformative.

It was wonderful.

Back to the writing though. I plan on doing a mini retreat at home next month. Take one extra off day, sit at my desk and just tune out the world.

I may have another retreat in the middle of next year as well.

The takeaway for me is that it’s okay if plans change. To enjoy the moments for what they are. I learned a lot about myself and what I value during this trip.

Writing wise, I did manage to write some poems, plan a new set of stories, and I reached out to two potential writing opportunities. It was a good trip.

I hope you’re day is going well.

Warm Regards,

Shannon M.

A Midpoint

Good morning Dear Reader,

Firstly, I’m grateful for:

1. Having people in my life to talk to when I have darker moments in life.

2. Andrew gave me a lot of extra hugs and kisses before I left on my trip because I was feeling a bit depressed.

3. With the current life I’ve designed, I don’t have to feel pressured to be anything but me.

With that said, the last few days I was in quite a slump. If you didn’t read my last post, I felt a little lost.

Something about me, I know the path that I’ve chosen in life, isn’t a straight one. Living with depression for so many years has taught me to ride out the highs and the lows. The last few days were a low, so now I am on the uphill journey to the high.

For me, it’s like an adult roller coaster mixed with a kiddy roller coaster mixed with that one ride that goes in circles and swings side to side.

I wouldn’t claim it to be fun but it is interesting to say the least. I have learned a lot about the “human experience” as well as myself. Even though it is beyond inconvenient at times and sometimes dangerous, it does help me become a better writer.

The funny part to me is that I almost look forward to the “highs” even if I know a low low will follow.

In any case, I’m currently on a work trip for my day job. Some extra training I hope to utilize in the work place. It may explain the rise in my emotions. My inner child is so excited to be on my first work trip ever. It’s such a curious feeling.

I don’t know about you, but I’m the type of writer who has 17.2 billion notebooks that are unfinished or unopened. Something about having an endless amount of blank pages waiting to be filled is comforting? It always makes me laugh to think about that. Why do I do that? Why do I collect these little books and never use them?

In any case, I may or may not have mentioned this journal I got. It’s called the 90day goal planner (links below). I saw it on a facebook ad actually and it seemed right up my alley. I bought it and fell in love immediately. The only problem was that after about a week or two, I found myself skipping days (classic me). Then because I felt so ashamed of doing so, I skipped more and more days and kind of hid it in my backpack. That’s pretty typical of me. Hide things away as if they stop existing.

Today though, I had a great (albeit simple) idea. Instead of skipping so many pages, I just went back to the first day I skipped and filled out the page. Like for me, this was almost an epiphany because I have rigid standards about order etc.

I thought “Okay yea, I’m really on day 82, but instead of leaving all these empty pages, I’ll make sure to get the most out of this investment in me.”

Yes it’s intended for 90 days but there’s nothing that states you can’t take a break and pick it back up.

This may seem small but it’s an important lesson for the day: I do not have to hold myself to rigid standards and I can do things my own way.

Just because I missed a day or two doesn’t mean I have to stop altogether. I can keep going.

In any case, I hope you’re day is amazing dear reader. Even if you’re feeling down and you have taken a pause from your goals it’s okay. As long as we’re still alive, we can always resume any goal we set for ourselves.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Warm regards,

Shannon M.

A Low Day

Good morning Dear Reader,

I definitely skipped my writing yesterday and today. 😦 My apologies…I just didn’t have it in me.

The past couple of days I’ve been questioning and doubting myself. What meaning do I have? What do I contribute to the world? Does anything I do have purpose? That sort of thinking.

I had the last couple of days off and they were mostly spent in a depressed state with my greatest accomplishment being helping Andrew with the laundry and making the bed.

It’s just a weird place to be in. Sometimes I feel like “alright, I’m all better, no going back,” while other times I feel like “all that was a lie, I’ll always be a depressed little thing.” It’s frustrating.

The most frustrating part is that I don’t know why. Why do things that happen create these specific emotional responses? Why can’t I just get over things? At times I think if I can figure out the “why” I can fix the problem.

I know I’m not the smartest person in the world but I’m very analytical and none of these things make sense to me. It doesn’t make sense why I want to lay in bed all day and eat until I pass out of a food coma. I have a good life. I have a roof over my head. I have love in my life. I’m not where I want to be but I’m not doing so bad…yet I just feel like it’s all too much. Like, how dare I feel these things when other people have it worse?

I digress…

Objectively, I know that it’s not going to be sunshine and rainbows everyday. I know that it’s my life so I only have the one point of reference. So to me, the things that stress me out are the world. I know there’s no scale of hurt or depression or any feeling really.

Even though my head gets that, my heart doesn’t.

I don’t have all the answers for sure…but taking time to rest and recenter and reset is very important. All I can say dear reader, is that today is a low and it’s okay. Tomorrow will be better I’m sure. 🙂

Thank you for letting me vent.

Warm regards,

Shannon M.

Loving myself in my Spiritual Path

Good morning Dear Reader, 

This week’s affirmation: 

“I love and accept who I am and who I am is enough.”

As some of you know, I’m Pagan. I believe that inherently I am enough. I have all the tools inside me to forge my own path in life. 

While I believe that, it’s sometimes difficult with the depressive episodes because it becomes less of an issue of me having the tools and more about being unable to utilize them. Today has been a low day. Although I’ve accomplished many things this morning, a somber feeling is in my heart. A combination of failing to meet my expectations for myself and not knowing exactly how to get to where I want to be. 

That being said, a small something is urging me on today. A little thing got me out of bed this morning to write what I didn’t write yesterday and to keep pushing forward. I think my resilience is flaring up again. 

Somewhere in me, I know that I’m enough. Somewhere in me, I know I can do it. That voice is just a little quieter today and you know, that’s okay. That’s the reality right now and that’s okay. I’m not going to feel like this forever and I might not feel like this by the end of today. 

Spiritually, I feel sound yet distant from the Creator. I feel like I’ve let too much negativity cloud me. So today, I’m going to try to meditate and pray. To fill my spirit with vigor so my thoughts and my body will follow! Wish me luck dear reader. 

Thanks for reading. 

Warm Regards, 

Shannon M. 

If you’d like the book for yourself, you can find it on Amazon here. You can also visit Denise Linn’s website here.

Loving myself around Others

Good morning Dear Reader, 

This week’s affirmation: 

“I love and accept who I am and who I am is enough.”

Anyone who knows me will probably tell you that I speak my mind. I’ve never been fake and I’m very true to who I am. It takes too much energy to pretend to be something I’m not. Living authentically is something really important to me. 

Now, there was a time where I would hide parts of myself away but even back then “genuine” was how most people would describe me. 

I’ve reached a point in life where I think “if they don’t like me, somebody will”. I know in my heart I’m a good person. I go out of my way to maintain friendships and be a good person. I am not perfect but I know I’m not toxic. So to me, if someone doesn’t like my energy, that’s okay. I’m not for everyone and to try to force myself to be everything to everyone is taxing. 

So instead, I just work on my own energy. I work on being the best me I can be. If I do that, the right person will come along. Time and time again, this has proven to be true. In work, in relationships, in friendships: if you are fake, you’ll attract something that’s not for you. 

Socially at least, I know I’m enough. I am a caring friend. I have a lot of love to give and if I have the power to help you with anything I will do so or I’ll find someone who can. I don’t judge but I’ll call you out if you’re full of it. I have no problem admitting my wrong-doings and I’m always willing to talk things out and move forward. At the same time, I’m super quirky. I have a lot of energy and I can get loud when I’m excited. I can be depressed and disappear sometimes. I’m flawed, just like everyone. 

That doesn’t mean that my flaws make me less. It doesn’t make you less. It doesn’t make my friends less. 

I always encourage people to say what they mean and mean what they say. In my relationship, for example, Andrew and I have a little philosophy. 

“This is me, you can grow with me if you want and I’ll nourish you along the way, but it’s never the intention to force you to be what I imagine you to be.”

Sometimes in a relationship, you have this idea about a person. They represent XYZ, but that may differ from reality and you might get mad. Don’t. You aren’t the same person in high school or when you were five or even yesterday. The same is true for them. If you grow with each other, and support that growth you’ll be happier in the long run I think. 

But I digress. I am enough. You are enough. Be yourself at all times. 

Thanks for reading 🙂

Warm Regards, 

Shannon M. 

If you’d like the book for yourself, you can find it on Amazon here. You can also visit Denise Linn’s website here.

A personal tale on living.