Hope Your Day Started Better Than Mine

I hope your day began better than mine did: my lovely car made the decision it wasn’t going to start for me. However, I was still able to salvage the morning and complete my Saturday errands thanks to some assistance from my significant other. And this experience made me contemplate the importance of being flexible, of making preverbal lemonade when life gives you lemons.

Now, was I upset when my plans were thwarted? Yes, of course, I was a little upset, but I quickly made a choice to take a different approach. The result was that I completed the tasks I needed to accomplish, we were able to spend some extra time together (she purchased me a BIG cookie!), and I didn’t destroy the day by getting angry.

Therefore, tonight, when I’m sipping on some wine and eating crab cakes for dinner, I’ll be sure to thank God and my special lady for helping me to salvage what could have been a horrific start to my weekend.

So, here is my advice to you. The next time something occurs in your life that would typically make you want to explode, take a deep breath, continue with your plans by taking a different path, and enjoy the rest of your day. Life is too short for anything else.

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.

Happy Mother’s Day

I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy and wonderful Mother’s Day. And since I’m also a lover of all things horrific, strange, or utterly unknown, here are “7 Things You Don’t Know About Mother’s Day’s Dark History.” (Sorry, but I couldn’t help myself.) 

 But seriously folks, make sure to express to your mother just how special she is to you—regardless of your past relational circumstances. Don’t let the day come to a close without wishing her a happy Mother’s Day, even if you have to convey the message via phone, text message, or social media. Unfortunately, my mother is no longer on this Earth, and I wasted so many chances to convey my feelings for her while she was alive. Please, don’t make that same horrendous mistake.

Here are a few thoughts regarding mothers, straight from God’s Words.

“She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness” (Proverbs 31:26, King James Version).

“As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem” (Isaiah 66:13, King James Version).

“And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living” (Genesis 3:20, King James Version).

So, to every mother throughout this entire world, I wish you a Happy Mother’s Day. You’re an exceptional gift from God, worthy of love, respect, and admiration. Thank you for everything you do, because, without you, life would be unlivable.

God bless you!

P.S. Okay, before I forget to balance things out by catering to those who are not fans of the bizarre, here are “20 of the Most Beautiful Mother’s Day Quotes.”

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.

Time Management for Everyone

One of the most fundamental skills a person needs to possess is time management. Being able to manage your time effectively will lead to success in reaching your goals, establishing a healthy sense of accomplishment, and reducing your levels of anxiety. (Here is some additional reading to help you “Stave off Anxiety,” should you be interested.) So, let’s get started with time management for everyone.

For those of you who desire additional information on the definition of time management, here is a good article from Wikipedia; however, for our general purposes, we’ll define time management as the ability to understand, plan, and adhere to time allocation. And trust me, the following list is truly time management for everyone.

1) Set and reach goals – If you’ve never been an individual who establishes goals, you need to begin today—this very moment (i.e., right now!). Goals are your targets, and without a target, how will you know where to aim? Moreover, how much time will you waste?

Now, if you’re unfamiliar with goal setting, “What is Goal Setting and How to Do it Well” is a great place to start. You’ll need to create long- and short-term goals, making sure to define the results you’re seeking. Remember, you need something (a goal) to direct your actions; otherwise, you’ll drift aimlessly through life without direction, which reduces your overall chances for success.

2) Create to-do lists – You should have a prioritized list of daily tasks that need to be accomplished, which you created the previous day. The agenda should also have specific times allotted for each item. As you’re drinking your morning coffee, you can peruse your to-do list and focus on that day’s activities. Of course, your list does not have to be complicated to be effective, but it should be established before you go to bed. Period.

3) Do the BIG stuff first – Once you have a prioritized to-do list, you should work on essential items early in the day, if at all possible, while you still have plenty of energy and enthusiasm in the tank. Also, if you accomplish the more significant and challenging tasks first, you’ll be more inclined to complete the list.

4) Develop good habits – Good habits go a long way towards helping to increase your time management skills. For example, if you develop the habit of creating a to-do list every day, pretty soon, you’ll feel awkward without a detailed plan for the day. That is a good thing.

Conversely, if you have bad habits that are hindering your success, you need to eliminate those harmful practices, replacing them with positive ones. And you’ll be surprised at how easy the entire process becomes once you’ve established good habits. But again, don’t berate yourself for falling short here and there; instead, keep moving forward, and you “will” develop better habits over time, regardless of what the voice in your head says.

5) Stay organized – Staying organized is imperative to your overall success, because, if you’re always disorganized, you’ll struggle to stay on task, to locate items, and to keep your stress levels under control. The organization will improve your efficiency, thereby eliminating wasted time and effort—both of which you have limited amounts.

6) Delegate tasks – You don’t have to do everything yourself. Instead of overwhelming yourself to the point of exhaustion, enlist the help of your children, spouse, or even a friend. There is absolutely nothing wrong with spending time together while simultaneously checking off items from your to-do list.

On more than one occasion, I have spent time with a friend, talking and sipping on an adult beverage, while working on my car, cleaning the house, making dinner, or decorating for a birthday party. The results were: I didn’t feel guilty, and we both had a marvelous time.

7) Stop trying to multitask – I’ve said this before, there is no such thing as multitasking because you can only give your full attention to one thing at a time. So, whatever you’re doing at the moment, give it your undivided attention. However, that means you need to diligently schedule a time for yourself to relax, watch a movie, or browse social media. Don’t be that guy or gal who’s talking to someone while also checking Facebook on your iPhone. Those people are rude and irritating—there, I said it with unabashed verve.

And there you have my seven suggestions for time management for everyone. If you practice these techniques until they become second nature, you’ll be amazed at the increase in productivity. I know you can do it. But don’t be discouraged if it takes some time—that’s okay because there is no rush. You “will” succeed if you’re “Thwarting Procrastination,” continuously improving, and making any necessary corrections to facilitate the process.

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.

What Does It Mean to Live as a Christian?

Have you ever asked yourself the question: What Does It Mean to Live as a Christian? Well, if you “are” a born-again Christian, you’ve probably contemplated the answer to that question more times than you can remember. And if you’re not a follower of Christ, please, just keep reading because you’ll learn something useful in understanding your fellow human beings who are Christians.

Now, we could reference the “10 Guidelines for Christian Living” by Billy Graham for an excellent inventory of items we should be doing as Christians; however, I would like to assemble a simple list of what I believe are the fundamentals for living like a believer.

1) Trust in God

God is God and you are not. Period. Therefore, you should believe what He says (the Bible), don’t think you know better than He does (trust me—you do not!), and stop expecting God to work on your timetable or to meet your expectations.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones” (Proverbs 3:5-8, KJV).

2) Pray, pray, pray

Praying is not only an outstanding method for learning more about God, but also the perfect system for relieving anxiety, fear, and depression. Hence, take all your troubles and concerns to God in prayer; likewise, talk to Him about your needs and desires, too. Note: There is no right or wrong way to pray.

Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms” (James 5:13, KJV).

3) Imitate Christ

We should strive to emulate Jesus Christ in everything we do. No, we will never reach the level of Jesus in our thoughts and actions; nevertheless, as a Christian, imitating Jesus should be our constant goal. How did Jesus conduct Himself? I’m glad you asked that vital question. And the succinct answer is: Read your Bible and find out.

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:3-8, KJV).

4) Share the saving knowledge of the Gospel with others

As a Christian, you should be happy talking to others about Jesus—no excuses permitted. Do your family and friends know your feelings about the Savior? If the answer is no, then you should be telling them. Would your coworkers or fellow students know you were a Christian if they were asked? Again, if the answer is no, you need to contemplate why the reply would be no.

Talk about Christ continuously. Tell other people the good news of the Gospel and how they, too, can be saved. After all, how will they inherit everlasting life if nobody tells them about the good news?

And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15, KJV).

So, there’s my input regarding the question of what does it mean to live as a Christian. And whether you agree, disagree, or land somewhere in the middle, the most crucial aspect is to ponder that question. Meditate on God’s Words. Perform some introspection. Read additional material regarding the topic. Learn to understand precisely what you believe and where you stand in relation to those beliefs. Then and only then will you unearth how to live like a Christian.

May God bless you all. Amen!

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.

Stave off Anxiety

If you find yourself feeling more anxious than usual lately, you are certainly not alone in your struggles, it’s understandable for people to feel apprehensive about the uncertainty in the world today. And if you’re stuck at home (the kids, too!), that could exacerbate the problem because your routine is altered. Moreover, you may find yourself becoming bored, and if that’s the case, you should read our post “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” for twenty-five ideas to keep you and your children occupied. So, are you ready to learn how to stave off anxiety?

First, what exactly is the definition of anxiety? Well, in simple terms: anxiety is your body’s natural response to stress and/or the unknown. In this post, I’m referring to a general feeling of worry and not an acute clinical disorder. If you or someone you love is suffering from severe anxiety, please contact a professional for assistance. (Here is a link on the subject of anxiety disorders from the Mayo Clinic.)

Now that we have at least a rudimentary understanding of what anxiety is, we can discuss methods for staving off anxiety. Therefore, without further ado, here are some suggestions to help stave off anxiety.

Use deep-breathing – When you realize your beginning to stress, close your eyes, breathe in deeply through your nose, hold that breath for three seconds, and exhale slowly. Repeat this process until the feeling of anxiety has passed.

Embrace a healthier lifestyle – Your physical and mental health is directly correlated to your ability to handle stress; therefore, you should work diligently to maintain a healthy lifestyle. (1) Get adequate sleep, (2) eat a balanced diet predominately consisting of whole foods, (3) drink plenty of water, and (4) exercise regularly.

Question irrational thoughts – When you tell yourself unrealistic or judgmental statements, you will have illogical thought patterns. Accordingly, you’ll raise your level of anxiety by entertaining such erroneous declarations. So, learn to refute those ideas before they trigger feelings of worry.

  • Example of an irrational thought: I never do anything correctly because I’m worthless.
  • Example of combating that unsound thought: There are lots of things I do correctly. And, even if I do make a mistake (everybody commits errors), that doesn’t make me a worthless individual.

Be grateful always –Remember to Be Grateful” for everything you have because there is always someone else in a worse situation than you. And “Being replete with gratitude is the passport to contentment.” Subsequently, by practicing gratitude, you’ll look at circumstances differently; thus, you will be reducing anxiety, increasing happiness, and improving the lives of the people around you.

Talk with friends or family – Sometimes, all we need is a reality check, so keep in contact with people you trust to tell you the truth—not validate your irrational beliefs. And don’t be afraid to ask those individuals for help if necessary.

Practice self-care – Before you can adequately perform your obligations to others, you have to be healthy yourself; otherwise, your lack of self-care will engender unhealthy levels of stress, which isn’t advantageous to anyone. To prevent the accumulation of stress, pamper yourself by meditating, take a peaceful bath, get a massage, read a good book, treat yourself to a special dinner, or relax with a glass of wine and do nothing. You make a choice, but make sure to schedule downtime for yourself.

Ladies and gentlemen, you now have several methods to stave off anxiety, but you have to implement these strategies into your daily routine to ensure success. I cannot emphasize this concept enough: you have to work at reducing your levels of anxiety vigorously. Because . . . nothing in life worth accomplishing happens without some degree of effort.

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.

Happy Easter

I would like to take this occasion to wish everyone a safe and cheerful Easter. May you spend the day with those you love and who love you. And don’t forget: God provided his Son as a sacrifice so that you (that means everyone!) have the opportunity for eternal life.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16, King James Version).

For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13, King James Version).

God bless you and your family.

Locomotion Today

As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at eric@locomotiontoday.com.