Seven Habits for a More Productive Commute

How many of us commute to work and don’t use that time productively?  It is so easy to begin the day by complaining about the weather, the traffic, the line at the coffee shop, or countless other trivial distractions.

It’s time to change!  To begin to train your mind to start the day off strong, be mindful when that negative thought creeps in when you realize way too many people missed the lesson on how to merge in traffic, use a signal, or that the left lane is for the speedier drivers…no need to honk every time someone upsets you on the road!  When you begin to have those thoughts tell yourself “nope, not today” and refocus on a positive thought.

There are more productive ways to spend your time on that commute which will benefit you and those around you.

I challenge you to try at least one of these for a week and see how your day improves!

positiveSeven Habits for a More Productive Commute

What are you listening to?: Is it adding anything beneficial to your life?  Gossip radio?  What type of music?  Be mindful of what you put on—in what way is it helping you be a better person?  Try motivational speeches, sermons, TED Talks, educational podcasts, or music that is going to place you in the right mindset for the day.

Conversations with God: On my way to work is when I have some of the best conversations with God.  If I need to vent, ask for advice, pray, or just say thank you I use this time to do that.  Give it a try!  I was struggling with a choice I made that was not popular among others, so I asked God to take it and show me if I needed to approach the situation a different way—he was loud and clear that the choice I made was the right one.  It’s amazing when God speaks to you!

Think up blog topics: For us bloggers there are times when we go through a bit of bloggers block…this time spent in our car driving while our mind wanders is a great way to think up possible topic ideas to write about.  I came up with this topic while on my drive to work.

Pray: On your way to work pray for God to use you that day.  Pray for your family, friends, co-workers, students, patients…

Eat a healthy snack: Pack some grapes, carrots, celery, almonds, or healthy snack of your choice to munch on while driving…an easy way to start making sure you are eating right!

Think of something kind to do for someone that day:  Do you know who has a birthday coming up?  Who might need some encouragement?  Everyone can use kindness, so take that commuting time to think of someone and what is something special you can do for that person.  Maybe it’s sending them a card, bringing them in a plant to work to say welcome to the company, paying for the person behind you at coffee shop, or just simply think of a compliment you can give someone that day!

Affirmations:  What do you tell yourself before you even arrive to work?  It can have a huge impact on your day?  Are you already complaining that today is Monday and thinking about that annoying co-worker?  Stop that immediately and change what you say to yourself!  Try saying to yourself that you are excited for this Monday, excited for what the day will bring!  Never say negative things about yourself!  Tell yourself, “I am talented”, “I am creative”, “I am successful”, “I am positive”…

Share in a comment:  Like I mentioned above, I challenge you to try at least one of these for a week while on your commute to work.  I guarantee that you will notice a difference.  What one will you try?  What other habits are we able to do while on our commute to work? 


Post inspired by The Daily Post, Daily Prompt: Honk

Motivational Monday: Inky Johnson “It’s Not Only About You”

Do your students need motivation?  Do you?  We can all use a bit more of a push once in a while!

Since I teach students who are considered a bit more challenging than most I’m always trying to improve relationships, motivate, inspire, and provide strategies they can use to keep motivated to continue to pursue their goals.

A few weeks ago we started to begin our week off with a motivational mini-lesson to bring more positivity to our week.  This isn’t some lesson to fluff off, but it will improve the environment in your classroom…and ripple outward.

Here is a free handout you can use with your own class to try this out.  I would love feedback from anyone who gives it a try.  My students are highly engaged, ask for more, and when I shared that I watch these types of videos when I’m in a bit of an off mood one student said she was going to start doing the same thing.

Inky Johnson Its not just about you

Watch Inky Johnson Video Here

Follow me to receive more motivational mini-lessons you can use in your classroom…and your own life.  More to come…




Experiencing the Layers of Pregnancy

I am officially 23 weeks pregnant.  I never thought I would even entertain the idea of having another child, but I fell in love with an amazing man and that plan changed.

When I met him I told him straight, “I will not be married, I will not have anymore children, and if you are still hung up on some ex or into drugs don’t bother with me because I don’t have time to play around”.

The poor guy looked at me and said, “Ummm…can we just go on a date to see where that takes us?”

And here we are now…23 weeks pregnant!  Whoa!  I think I’m more scared now than ever before!  How will I balance my life?  How will I sleep?  I want to breast feed, but will also be working…will I be able to pump enough?  And the dreaded thoughts about my body and what it will look like after I give birth…

For now I will focus on the beauty of my body as it changes and embrace the layers of change.

Today I took a few minutes to take some photos of myself to do just that…focus on the beauty of my pregnant body.

If this offends you I don’t apologize. If I wasn’t pregnant, on a beach, and in a bikini then you wouldn’t be offended at all.  It took me years to love my body, and becoming pregnant has caused a range of emotions to continue to love every part.

Share in a comment:  Did you find it easier to appreciate your body while you were pregnant?  Before pregnancy?  After?  How do you maintain a positive body image?


Post inspired by The Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge: Layered

Endless Possibilities…

Photo: Tinker Nature Park, Henrietta NY

I’m at a point in my life where I realize possibilities are endless, but not quite sure which direction is for me.  I just fantasize for now.  I’m ready for something exciting, something new, a challenge that will push me to grow in ways I’ve never imagined.

I love teaching in the school I’m in, but need something more…I don’t feel as if I’m making enough of an impact.  Tomorrow starts a new semester and I have some ideas up my sleeve that I’m excited to try.  I’m looking to take my career to the next level, but haven’t found a position that is right for me yet.  I feel something great coming soon though.

Do I make a drastic change and move…as in out of state, or even out of the country?  I’m currently researching options, but until my divorce is final I’m stuck–I loathe feeling stuck…feeling as if someone else has control over my choices–especially such a sick, sick, evil, being!  Ok, I don’t want this to become a negative post—it will be honest though and lately I’ve been struggling with staying positive–in part because of the divorce hold up.

Do I make a drastic change and leave education all together?  No!  I love interacting with students too much for that!  Maybe step up my photography skills and open a studio?  I don’t know…for now I will continue to learn new techniques, practice, play, and have fun until I decide what comes next.

Do I want to marry again?  Have more children?  Mine are 19, 14, and 12…life has changed as they are older and independent…I have more freedom…they don’t need me as much.  It is sort of depressing at times to think about.  My babies are no longer babies.  Why does God put so much on one person’s shoulders?  I guess I shouldn’t complain because my children are healthy–some people are dealing with much more than I am.



Now that my children are a bit older I have plenty of time to work out at the gym.  I’ve been consistent in going and have a routine, but I do need to push myself more there too.  I work out in my comfort zone, using the machines I know, but I need to venture out in that area where the weights are.  I’m a confident woman, but for some reason I’m scared to step out of my bubble and into the weight area of the gym.  What if I don’t know how to use a machine?  I’m not a fan of asking for help…especially from men!  What if I ask for help, but nobody can hear me (darn earbuds)? What if I look like a rookie?  Wait…I am a rookie!  Everyone is looking at me!  No…nobody is looking at you!  These pants are a bit tight and my butt is toning up…maybe they are looking!  Stop Crystal..They are watching the TV shows up above! Uggg…maybe tomorrow I will dip my toes into the weight area…or maybe I’ll jump in canon ball style like this guy did!



Comment:  Do you work out at the gym?  Have you had these thoughts?  Any advice for me to overcome my fear?



Life after Deleting Facebook

A little less than a year ago I deleted my Facebook when I started a new job in order to be more professional and become more goal focused.  I initially wanted to avoid the friend requests from co-workers who just craved new gossip material, and quite frankly I just needed the break as it was becoming an addiction.
Many people will refuse to admit they are addicted to Facebook…the same people who call me crazy for deactivating mine.

Life after deactivating my Facebook has…
1. Allowed more time to spend with people building meaningful relationships
• rather than worrying about who commented, who liked, or what others post I have deeper connections occurring face to face
2. Decreased the negativity I’m exposing myself to such as…
• arguments between family/friends
• constant posts how it’s Monday and how will we make it through another work week
• political opinions
• videos of pets and children being abused…why do people post this garbage to begin with?
• No need to keep up with those “friends” who requested me just to be nosey…why do people send requests who don’t even like you anyway? Why did I accept them?
3. No more worrying if people with “like” my newly posted picture/post (yea, I know…you don’t do this, but be real…you do!)
• What if people don’t like this one as must as the last one?  Did I gain weight?  Was I showing enough skin?  Was I showing too much?  Am I portraying myself as a good mother?  I don’t really care what people think…I swear.
4. Allowed me to go through my bad moods without the entire Facebook community becoming alarmed
• Call me impulsive…if I felt a certain way I would post it…even if it was in an incognito kind of way
5. Increased my time spent with my hobbies and opened doors to new experiences

Blogging has generated some of the same worries that Facebook did, but since my personal information isn’t as readily available for all to search I’m more at ease.  Blogging is more therapeutic for me, whereas Facebook was more for keeping connected with friends (*wink*).

Share your thoughts!