10 Things to remember when you feel unsure of yourself

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It’s not what you say out loud to everyone else that determines your life – it’s what you whisper to yourself that has the greatest power.

If you feel unsure of yourself sometimes, I know exactly how you feel. I used to be incredibly unsure of myself… and sometimes I still am.

But it’s not all bad. Heightened self-consciousness, anxiety, an inability to join in, and feeling “different” – they’re really not all bad. Those inner battles have been my angels at times. Without them I would never have disappeared into literature, language, the mind, passionate work, and all the wild intensities that made and unmade me, and shaped me into the person I am today.

 

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But a harsh truth remains: The enemies we encounter in life, especially our own inner demons, use the things we’re insecure about against us.

This means we can’t hide forever. We have to emerge. We have to grow through our insecurities.

At some point we have to free ourselves and take our power back by being secure in who we are – flaws and all.

 

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This isn’t easy, of course – it’s a journey and as you embark on that journey, here are some important things to keep in mind:

1. The story you tell yourself is the story you live by. 

Everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Every day.  All the time, and that story makes you what you are – it lays the foundation for every action you take or don’t take. You build yourself out of that story.

  1. Every belittling, insecure thought is unreliable and changeable.

Once you become self-conscious, there is no end to it if you don’t address it; once you start to doubt yourself, there’s no room for anything else until you make a change. You’re going to have to let truth shout louder to your soul than the lies that have infected you.

  1. A moment of truth is one of your most powerful assets.

Instead of smiling to be polite, just cry when you need to. Instead of laughing when you are nervous or uncomfortable, just speak your truth. Instead of acting like everything is all right, proclaim it isn’t all right – talk about your feelings! Honour yourself. Honour your truth. Be real.

  1. A little self-focus and self-care goes a long way.

Whenever you are self-conscious you are really just exhibiting that you’re not conscious of who YOU are. You don’t feel comfortable being yourself. If you did, then there would be no problem – you wouldn’t be seeking opinions from others. You wouldn’t be worried what others say about you – it’d be irrelevant! When you are self-conscious you are in trouble. When you are self-conscious you are really showing symptoms that you don’t know who you are inside. Your very self-consciousness indicates that you have not given yourself enough care. (Read The Mastery of Love.)

  1. The biggest critic lives in your perception of people’s perception of you (not people’s perception of you).

One of the greatest journeys in life is overcoming insecure thoughts and learning to truly not care so much about other people’s opinions. In fact, you will never make a great impression on others until you stop thinking about what sort of impression you’re making.

 

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  1. Everyone has their own way, which has nothing to do with you.

One big reason we judge each other so bitterly in our society of social comparison and social status: we perceive anyone else who’s doing things differently than what we’re doing as criticizing our decisions. This, of course, is something we need to let GO!

  1. Your greatest beauty is completely out of sight in shallow social interactions.

Outer beauty is only skin deep, and everyone has ugly days – we’re only human. Focus within, not without. Acting right is better than looking right. Realize that evil can look pretty on the outside. Realize what makes you beautiful beyond looks. You are far more than what can be seen at a glance.

  1. Unconsciousness can cripple you

A human being will be imprisoned in a room with a door that’s unlocked and opens inwards, as long as it does not occur to her to pull rather than push. An open, conscious mind is the key. (Angel and I discuss this in more detail in the “Adversity” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)

  1. Your struggles have been making you, not breaking you

Sometimes you must go through difficulties, breakups, rejections and painful wounds, which shatter the flattering image you once had of life, in order to gradually discover two powerful truths: 1) Life is not exactly how you thought it was. 2) The loss of one wonderful pleasure is not necessarily the loss of true, long-term happiness and well -being.

  1. The more you live through and learn through, the more you will realize how much you don’t know.

Research suggests that the so-called “impostor syndrome” that takes place when we suddenly don’t feel “good enough” gets more intense as we grow wiser. The more experienced or accomplished we become, the more likely we are to rub shoulders with ever more interesting, talented and skilled people, leaving us feeling even more inadequate by comparison. So, in a backwards way, if you’re concerned that you don’t measure up, that could very well be a good sign that you actually do measure up just fine.

 

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After thoughts:

In the end, you will ultimately come to realize this:

Insecurities have the ability to shape and mould your mind to live with everything that’s bad – like crying on the inside constantly, while smiling on the outside… thus creating endless anxiety.

But, there is a solution:

  1. Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart.
    2. Forget about what you thought for a moment and appreciate exactly where you are.
    3. Think positively.
    4. Be mindful.
    5. Focus on the ONE meaningful task you can handle in the present.
    6. Notice the slight, gradual progress you’re making.

 ~ From Marc and Angel Hack Life
http://www.marcandangel.com

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6 Things you should love about your life

 

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You’ve got to dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth.

―William W. Purkey

 

This moment will be part of your story someday. It’s not right or wrong. It’s not perfect. It just is – a blank canvas – a completely unrestricted space that you can use as you please.

 

  • To laugh
  • To get rambunctious
  • To muse
  • To create
  • To express your freedom to be as you are

 

You have to live each moment consciously in your own way, design your own truth, and then share it with others. It’s a process of growth you gradually realize as an individual. You can’t acquire it from others; you can only share it once you’ve created it. You have to break out of your shell and do things. Do what moves you. Be who you are. Explore life’s mysteries until you figure out what matters most to you.

If you sit around for too long, blaming others for the things they did or didn’t do, or knew or didn’t know, you’ll remain sitting in one spot until you pass. Placing blame is easy, because it means you don’t have to do anything; you just have to sit around for your entire life. But that’s not living; that’s dying. To accept where you are without blame by seizing the present for what it is – for the opportunities it’s giving you every instant – that’s what injects life into your story and ultimately moves you forward.

 

 

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With all of this in mind, here are six things you should love about your life:

 

  1. Time spent on personal growth and goals:
    The wisest and happiest are those who are respectful of their time, annoyed at the needless loss of it, and use it dutifully to grow as they age. Sadly, too many of us age much faster than we grow. We spend so much of our lives going through the external motions of what society tells us ‘maturity’ is – getting married, buying houses, working our way up the corporate latter, etc. – that we fail to concentrate on our own inner growth and goals. We never allocate enough time just for us.

    Part of the problem is that we’re always waiting for some condition to resolve itself at some point in the future. We believe that the right time to take the next step is somehow going to magically happen tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, etc. But one day we wake up and realize we’re no closer than we were long ago. We find ourselves asking, “How did it get so late, and why haven’t I moved?” In other words, we’ve aged, but we never grew to our potential. We never fulfilled ourselves.

    Let this be your wake-up call. This is life. Right now. Indulge in it. Make it count. Because it’s happening. Read 1,000 Little Things.

 

  1. Living your truth every day:
    The world can easily be a tragedy if all you do is feel without ever acting. To feel something and believe in it, and not to live it, is lying to yourself. If you do this for too long you will never do more than exist meekly from one robotic motion to the next. You will live a lie every day as the truth haunts your thoughts every night. You simply can’t get away from your truth by moving dishonestly from one place to the next.

    If any of this hits too close to home, take a stand right now. Stop sipping the denial cocktail and take a shot of the delightful truth. Wherever your heart is, there you will find the reality that brings YOU to life. The time to act on your truth is now.

 

 

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  1. The joy and freedom of an open mind:
    Your perspective on things is important; it enables you to make sense of the life you lead. Always keep in mind, though, that different people have different perspectives, and yours isn’t the only one that makes sense. There are few black and white facts in this world. Most facts are simply interpretations. You begin to learn wisely when you’re willing to see life from other people’s perspectives too.

    Even as you grow wiser and wiser with age you must remind yourself that an understanding is never absolutely final. What’s currently right could easily be wrong later. Thus, the most destructive illusion is a settled point of view. Since life is continuous growth and movement, choosing a fixed point of view is essentially a declaration of death.

    Success in life does not depend on always being or proving that you’re right. To make real progress you must let go of the assumption that you already have all the answers. You can listen to others, learn from them, and successfully work with them even though you may not agree with every opinion they have. When people respectfully agree to disagree, everyone benefits from the diversity of perspective. Read Buddha’s Brain .

 

  1. Relationships that improve you:
    It’s not about finding someone to lose yourself in, it’s about meeting someone to find yourself in. When you connect with someone special – a friend or lover – this person helps you find the best in yourself. In this way, neither of you actually meet the best in the each other; you both grow into your best selves by spending time together and nurturing each other’s growth.

    When you honestly ask yourself who these special people are in your life, you will often find that it’s those who, instead of giving you things or taking things from you (advice, answers, material possessions, etc.), have chosen rather to share in your joy and pain, and experience life along with you through good times and bad.

 

 

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  1. The story you tell yourself every day:
    Forget what everyone else thinks of you; chances are, they aren’t thinking about you anyway. If you feel like they always are, understand that this perception of them watching you and critiquing your every move is a complete figment of your imagination. It’s your own inner fears and insecurities that are creating this illusion. It’s you judging yourself that’s the problem.

    You judge yourself by telling yourself a story inside of your head. Every moment of every day you’re telling yourself this story. You are building your future around this story, so tell it right. Create a positive narrative about your dreams and goals that include only the circumstances that matter. What you think others are thinking about you is not part of this narrative, and neither are your negative self-judgments. Read Uncertainty .

 

  1. The positive spin of life’s surprises:
    You are never at the total mercy of life’s surprises. No matter what life throws at you, you can decide what these events mean to you in the short term, the long term, and how you will integrate them into your life. Everything that happens is subject to your interpretation of it. Thus, far more important than what happens, is what you choose to do with what happens, and your options are abundant.

    The life you live is ultimately the life you choose. Choose to focus on the negative, and negativity will indeed surround you. Turn your focus to the positive possibilities, and these possibilities gradually become realities in your life.

    ~ From Marc and Angel Hack Life
    http://www.marcandangel.com

10 Truths you will learn before you find happiness . . .

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Written by: Bernadette Logue

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”
―Mahatma Gandhi

We are all beautiful human beings here in this world trying to find our way. Every day we seek to better understand the meaning of our lives. We long to discover our gifts and release them fully into the world, and we hope to find happiness and peace along the way.

For some of us the key to these desires rings loud and clear, driving what we do and how we do it. For others, these deep seeded needs are buried below the noise of daily life, below ego, below fear, below the pressures and norms that we face in society… and thus, they are rarely addressed.

Along my own journey of self-actualization, I’ve witnessed dozens of great people discover their own paths to happiness and self-fulfillment, and I’ve noticed many common themes emerge. In all cases, the happiness they discover and gradually develop internally is seeded by the realization of certain fundamental truths.

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It seems we are all here to realize these truths, in our own way, in our own time. And once they resonate fully, not just intellectually, but emotionally and spiritually, we are then able to find the happiness and peace we seek . . .

1. It’s impossible for anyone else to define YOU.
You are indefinable. You are the only one in this world who gets to say who you are. Circumstances and the opinions of others can only define you if you allow them to. Do not give away your power and the magic of your essence by putting weight on negative situations in your life or the negative words of other people.

2. You were born with everything you need.
There is nothing you are missing. There is no need to frantically become more, be more, do more, or get more. You are whole and complete, and were gifted every talent and insight you needed to thrive in this world in the moment you were born. Your only job is to accept this truth and then allow it to unfold. Some gifts don’t become apparent until later in life. Some insights only become clear to you once you have life experiences that unlock such wisdom from within you. Trust in this and relax.

3. Perfection is a man-made illusion.
We are beautifully imperfect beings, operating in a very imperfect world, and that is just the way it is meant to be. Striving for perfection is a hollow goal, one that can never be achieved. Society shows us doctored images of perfection constantly in marketing, media, opinions and expectations. Do not buy into this illusion; it will only lead you into darkness. Embrace your quirks, your flaws and the fact that life is a roller coaster at times. Strive for excellence, have high standards… but never confuse that with the crippling behavior of perfectionism.

4. You are NOT your thoughts.
You are the witnessing essence and consciousness behind the noise in your mind. Your mind doesn’t define you, nor does it control you. It is not who you are. As soon as you recognize this, by watching your thoughts like an intrigued third-party observer, you will create instant distance from those thoughts and therefore no longer be identified with or enslaved by them. (Read The Power of Now.)

5. Your beliefs can be modified to lift you up.
Whatever you believe to be true about yourself and life in the long-term becomes your reality. Your beliefs are ingrained patterns of thinking that you build up over a lifetime. They are habitual ways of processing the world around you. If those beliefs don’t work in your favor, you can change them. How? In the very same way the negative beliefs formed in the first place – via repetitive thoughts that you accepted to be the truth. Ingrain new beliefs by consciously choosing and repeating messages that lift you up.

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6. The past and future don’t exist.
Now is the moment. The past is just a memory. The future is a mental projection. You can choose to dwell back in the past for learning and joyous reflection. You can choose to dwell in the future for visualization and practical planning. However, any time your awareness floats away to the past or future frequently for negative purposes, you are suffocating your ability to thrive in the only moment you ever have… the now.

7. Your calling in life is to fully express who you already are.
The world will never see another human being like you. There is no one on the face of the planet that has what you have. Your uniqueness, in every respect, is your gift. Life asks one thing of you… to be the full expression of yourself so that you can leave your unique imprint on all those you encounter and upon the world. Never underestimate the power of your energy and how it ripples outwards to affect everything and everyone around you – IF you are being your full, authentic self. Honor your intuition and act upon all your inspirations.

8. Challenges are gifts for your growth.
Without challenges you cannot unlock your full potential. Obstacles are opportunities for growth. The world needs the fullness of who you are, and it is through your experiences in life that you unfold into that fullness. How can you demonstrate willpower and strength if your resolve has never been tested? How can you role model love and compassion if you have never faced the opposite? Knowing there is a higher purpose within dark times, is what leads you to be at peace in the midst of those storms, knowing that you are a diamond being forged under pressure.

9. Forgiveness is choosing happiness over hurt.
We do not forgive others in order to free them of the situation, burden, guilt or regret. We forgive others to free ourselves and walk into compassion and love by doing so. It is in freeing ourselves that our energy level rises, our consciousness rises, and in doing so those around us benefit too. The words of forgiveness have a positive impact on those we forgive, but ultimately forgiveness is a choice that allows us to be happy again. This goes for both forgiveness of others and forgiveness of self.

10. Surrender is the essence of a happy life.
Letting go is not giving up. Letting go is surrendering any obsessive attachment to particular people, outcomes and situations. Surrender means showing up every day in your life with the intention to be your best self, and to do the best you know how, without expecting life to go a certain way. Have goals, have dreams, aspire and take purposeful action, but detach from what life must look like.

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The energy of someone aspiring to create their dreams, teamed with surrender, is far more powerful and creative than someone determined to create outcomes with a desperate ‘must have’ mentality.

Surrender brings inner peace and joy, and lest we forget that our outer lives are a reflection of our inner state of being.

12 things I can say about myself

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You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
– Mae West

I am following my heart and intuition: I’m not allowing myself to be pushed by my problems but allowing myself to be led by my dreams. I’m living the life I want to live to be the person I want to be years from now. I am making decisions and acting on them. I’m allowing myself to make mistakes, fall and trying again. Even if I fall a thousand times, at least I won’t have to wonder what could have been. At least I will know in my heart that I gave my dreams my best shot.

Each of us has a fire in our hearts burning for something. It’s our responsibility in life to find it and keep it lit. This is my life, and it’s a short one. I will not let others extinguish my flame. I will try whatever I want to try, go wherever I want to go. I will follow my own intuition. I will dream with my eyes open until I know exactly what it looks like. Then I will do at least one thing every day to make it a reality. As I strive to achieve my goals, I can count on there being some fairly substantial disappointments along the way. I will not allow myself to get discouraged, the road to my dreams may not be an easy one. I need to think of these disappointments as challenges – tests of persistence and courage. At the end of the road more often than not, we regret what we didn’t do far more than what we did.

I am proud of myself: I am my own best friend and my own biggest critic. Regardless of the opinions of others, at the end of the day the only reflection staring back at me in the mirror is my own. I need to accept everything about myself – EVERYTHING!! I am me and that is the beginning and the end – no apologies, no regrets.

People who are proud of themselves tend to have passions in life, feel content and set good examples for others. It requires envisioning the person I would like to become and making my best efforts grow.

Being proud isn’t bragging about how great I am; it’s more like quietly knowing that I’m worth a lot. It’s not about thinking I’m perfect – because nobody is – but knowing that I’m worthy of being loved and accepted. All I have to do is be myself and live the story that no one else can live – the story of my own unique life. I need to be proud, be confident, because I will never know who has been looking at me wishing they were me.

I am making a difference: I should act as if what I do makes a difference, because it does. Is it true that we all live to serve? That by helping others we fulfil our own destiny? The answer is a simple “yes”. When you make a positive impact in someone else’s life, you also make a positive impact in your own life. Do something that is greater than you – something that helps someone else to be happy or suffer less. I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. I can smile and enjoy the fact that I made a difference – one I’m likely to remember forever.

I am happy and grateful: Happiness is within me, in my way of thinking. How I view myself and my world are mindful choices and habits. The lens I choose to view everything through determines how I feel about myself and everything that happens around me.

Being grateful will always make me happy. When I’m finding it hard to be grateful for anything, I need to sit down, close my eyes and take a long, slow breath and be grateful for oxygen. Every breath I take is in sync with someone’s last.

I am growing into the best version of me: ”Always be a first rate version of yourself instead of a second rate version of somebody else” – Judy Garland

I need to live by this statement. There is no such thing as living in someone else’s shoes. The only shoes I can occupy are my own. If I’m not being myself, I’m not truly living – I’m merely existing. Trying to be anyone else is a waste of the person I am. I need to embrace the individual inside me that has ideas, strengths and beauty like no one else. I need to be the person I know myself to be – the best version of me – on my terms. I need to improve continuously, take care of my body and my health, and surround myself with positivity, to become the best version of me.

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I am making my time count: Time is the most valuable constituent of life. I need to make the time for what does matter today. Really being in the moment, finding passion in my life, seeing the world and travelling, or just seeing the world that’s around me right now, being with great people, doing amazing things, eating amazing food and savouring life’s little pleasures. I need to remember my time is priceless, but it’s free. I can’t own it, but I can use it. I can spend it, but I can’t keep it. Once I’ve lost it I can never get it back. I really do only have a short period to live so I need to let my dreams be bigger than my fears and my actions louder than my words. I need to make my time count!

I am honest with myself: I need to be honest about what’s right, as well as what needs to be changed. I need to be honest about what I want to achieve and who I want to become. I need to be honest with every aspect of my life, always, because I am the one person I can forever count on. I need to search my soul, for the truth, so that I truly know who I am. Once I do, I’ll have a better understanding of where I am now and how I got here, and I’ll be better equipped to identify where I want to go and how to get there (Read: The Four Agreements).

I am good to those I care about: In human relationships distance is not measured in miles, but in affection. Two people can be right next to each other, yet miles apart so I should not ignore someone I care about, because lack of concern hurts more than angry words. I need to stay in touch with those who matter to me. Not because it’s convenient, but because they’re worth the extra effort. When was the last time I told my family and close personal friends that I love them? Just spending a little time with someone shows that you care, shows that they are important enough that you’ve chosen – out of all the things to do on your busy schedule – to find the time for them. I need to talk to them. Listen to them. Understand them. Many times it’s our actions, not just our words that really speak what our heart feels for another.

I know what unconditional love feels like: Whether this love is towards a child, a lover, or another family member, I know the feeling of giving love and not expecting anything in return – this is what lies at the heart of unconditional love. Life through unconditional love is a wondrous adventure that excites the very core of our being and lights our path with delight. This love is a dynamic and powerful energy that lifts us through the most difficult times.

Love is beautiful and unpredictable. It begins with ourselves, for without self-love, we cannot know what true love can be. In loving ourselves, we allow the feeling to generate within us and then we can share it to everyone and everything around us. When you love unconditionally, it isn’t because the person you love is perfect, it’s because you learn to see an imperfect person perfectly.

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I have forgiven those who once hurt me: We’ve all been hurt by another person at some point or another – we were treated badly, trust was broken, hearts were hurt, and while this pain is normal, sometimes that pain lingers for too long. We relive the pain over and over, letting them live rent-free in our head and we have a hard time letting go. Grudges are a waste of perfect happiness, it causes us to miss out on the beauty of life as it happens. To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover the prisoner was you.

I take full accountability for my life: I will own my choices and my mistakes, and I am willing to take the necessary steps to improve upon them. I can either take accountability for my life or someone else will, and then, when they do, I’ll become a slave to their ideas and dreams instead a pioneer of my own. I am the only one who can directly control the outcome of my life and no, it won’t always be easy. Every person has a stack of obstacles ahead of them, but I must take accountability for my situation and overcome these obstacles. Choosing not to is choosing a lifetime of mere existence (Read: The Road Less Travelled).

I have no regrets: No, this is not quite accurate. I do have many regrets but I choose to move on and in future I will . . .
– Follow my heart
– Be true to myself
– Do what makes me happy
– Be with those who make me smile
– Laugh as much as I breathe
– Love as long as I live
– Say what I need to say
– Offer a helping hand when I’m able to
– Appreciate all the things I do have
– Smile
– Celebrate my small victories
– Learn from my mistakes
– Realize that everything is a lesson in disguise
– Forgive and
– Let go of things I can’t control

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Are you a woman of worth?

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A mother is often defined as someone who has given birth to a child. That in itself is incredible. The fact that each and every one of us has come from a woman. There is something far more special to women than simply the biological ability to give birth.

Mothers are people who change the world. They pass on wisdom, they pass on their best traits to the people they raise, they change the world through the people they influence. That’s what the most powerful moms are, they are influencers.

What’s interesting about this is that no woman needs to be a biological mother to have the best qualities of a mom, because what mom’s really are, they are agents of influence, agents of change and any woman can be that. That’s what makes women powerful, that’s what makes women special.

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How many women lose their identity when they get married and have children? When the children finally leave the nest, they end up looking for an identity again because being a woman is not just a matter of being a wife or mother. There’s this powerful woman, with parts of herself that she had forgotten along the way while she was being a mother, but the truth is . . . being a mom is not what made her special, being a powerful woman is what made her special.

Moms teach us a sense of kindness and empathy that’s unique to her and allows you to be the person you are today. Think about these questions for a few minutes . . .

• Would you be who you are today if it was not for your mother?
• Would you be in the career you’re in today if it was not for your mother?
• Would you be good at what you do if it wasn’t for your mother?

Moms are the people who change our lives.

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Questions:
• Who in your life, whether it is your biological mother or a mother figure, taught you something and what was that thing she taught you?

• What would you like to pass on as a powerful woman to somebody else to change their life?

You’re incredible. You do incredible things on this earth each and every single day and you change the world in the process.

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Men:
Pay homage to a woman in your life who has given you a gift that you treasure in your heart today.

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