Free Self-Improvement Kindle books!

Many libraries are beginning to loan out e-books, though the selection may be a little small. Fortunately, there are hundreds of free e-books just waiting to be found online! I went on a search and found a selection of self-improvement Kindle e-books on Amazon that are currently FREE.

As they are probably promotions, these books may not stay free for long, so grab them while you can. πŸ˜‰ I haven’t read these yet (I just downloaded them myself), but they sound like helpful and informative reads. Click “buy on Amazon” on the links below to get to each book’s listing.

 

If you read any of these books, let me know what you think! πŸ™‚

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New Video – Weight Loss Affirmations!

New video – New and improved weight loss affirmations! These should help with those 2019 fitness goals! πŸ˜‰

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If you enjoy this content, please support us with a coffee! πŸ™‚ –> Ko-Fi/SkyHigh

Check out my Youtube channel for positive videos –> Sky High on YouTube

Follow me on Twitter –> @SkyHighAffirm

January 2018 Review

The first month of 2018 is complete, and I thought I would look back on some of the accomplishments and things to be grateful for!

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Steps for Pet Health Challenge

I love using Walk for a Dog, an app that lets you log your walks to help animal charities. They had a special challenge in Dec-Jan, where you needed to complete 10 walks to qualify your favorite charity for a $1000 prize. Normally 10 walks would be super easy, but in the middle of winter it’s super cold and windy outside! But I made sure to watch the weather and take a walk on the tolerable days, and my dog Chester and I completed the challenge. πŸ™‚

When the challenge was done, WoofTrax reported that “In 60 days, challenge participantsΒ walked 176,000 times, totaling 1/4 million miles. That is equivalent to walking around the earth 10 times!” Wow! Next up is the Walk and Win Spring challenge.

Online Sales

My online store was booming in January! The Christmas rush is extended for me because of the upcoming Valentine’s Day and St Patrick’s Day holidays, so I was spending a lot of time sewing. In total, I completed 52 orders this month, with about 15% of them having multiple items! I’m so grateful for the wonderful customers who support my small business. πŸ™‚

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Trying New Things

I want to get in the habit of trying new things in life. In January, I tried 2 new foods – almond milk and dried seaweed snacks (thumbs up on the milk, thumbs down on the seaweed). I purchased some stainless steel straws, which I’ll be using from now on to save waste. I also tried a local restaurant in my city for the first time.

Recycling

One of my Resolutions for 2018 is to get serious with recycling. I saved up all of the family’s recyclables in January, and made a trip to the drop-off center an the end of the month. We managed to fill up 3 totes with recyclables, and sent them off to a new life! I plan to do this for the rest of 2018 and beyond. πŸ™‚

 

Youtube

Youtubers got some big news in January: they’re upping the requirements to be a “real” youtuber to 1000 subscribers and 4000 hours of watch time. If you’re not in the know, those are pretty harsh requirements for us little folks! But instead of letting it get me down, it’s lit a fire under my butt. πŸ˜‰ During January I got 5 videos done: Productivity, Sleep, Small Business, Youtube, and Self Esteem, which the the most content I’ve made in a single month so far!

I’m going to continue to build my channel and fill it with lots of uplifting videos. πŸ™‚

 

That’s my list for January. Hopefully February will be just as busy!

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Reverse To-Do List!

Lots of people make to-do lists, but have you ever made a REVERSE to-do list? I’ve started one for 2018! πŸ™‚

What exactly is a reverse to-do list? Well, I suppose you could also call it an accomplishment journal. Last fall I got a cute little lined journal at a craft store, and it’s been turned into my new daily accomplishment journal.

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Every time I accomplish something or get something done, I write it on the list. Even small, simple things get written down, like refilling the bird feeder, taking out the trash, or shaving my legs (hey, it’s easy to forget in winter when you’re constantly in long pants! XD ) So it’s basically a to-do list, except things are logged *after* they’re done instead of before.

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By the time bedtime comes around, I have a nice list of small accomplishments for the day. Big changes in life are often made from a collection of small changes, so I believe that logging the good things I do each day can lead to greater improvements. And even if nothing spectacular happens that day, it makes each day feel meaningful, in its own little way!

It also encourages taking immediate action, because it feels good to log completed tasks. Instead of thinking “I’ll clean the litter boxes sometime today”, I find myself doing it immediately so I can have the satisfaction of writing it on my reverse to-do list. πŸ™‚

What do you think? Are you going to try an accomplishment journal?

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A Look Back on 2017

2017 is gone, and a new year is upon us. The last year has given us a lot of change and disruption as a world and a species, and I’ve experienced a lot of change in my personal life as well. 2017 was a year of intense experiences, good and bad. Instead of making a list of specific events, I’m going to discuss some overall lessons I’ve learned over the previous 12 months.

Change the World

Our world and our society is currently in a state of dynamic change. Without discussing specific politics or scandals, it’s clear that a lot of negativity and darkness has come out of the woodwork and onto the main stage, and in many ways we are teetering precariously between success and failure. While this can be scary and/or depressing, it’s also clear that a powerful positive energy is rapidly gaining power as well. As darkness asserts itself, goodness is standing up stronger than ever to wash it in light.

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I’ve learned that each of us has power to increase this good. While I can’t change the world all at once, every moment of every day provides opportunities to do good things, help people, and increase the amount of positivity in the world. I believe that good energy is stronger than bad, and it’s my responsibility to send out as much of that good energy as possible. Each of us contributes to the world consciousness, and our contribution needs to be full of light and love now more than ever. We have the power to make our world a beautiful place, but we have to stand up and do it! As Michael Jackson said, we have to look at the man in the mirror, and MAKE THAT CHANGE! πŸ™‚

Personal Spiritual Growth

I’ve done a lot of spiritual pondering and growth through the past year. I’d prefer not to go into specific details, as many of them are intensely personal, but I will say that my mind has been opened up a lot about the possibilities beyond our physical world.

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Things that I’ve had trouble accepting before, like consciousness, vibrational energy, the law of attraction, and even the possibility of life after death have become more understandable and believable to me. The power of thought has become a big part of my life and my personal philosophy. I’ve also done a lot of work in determining my own value and my place in the world and what I’m here to accomplish.

I’m definitely not done growing…not even close! But 2017 was a huge learning experience for me that will influence the rest of my life.

Circle of Friends

I’ve always been incredibly shy, and I was officially diagnosed a few years ago with Social Phobia. Because of this, I haven’t had a lot of social interaction outside of my family for most of my life. My family is awesome and I adore them, but 2017 taught me that I really need to develop a strong circle of friends outside of my relatives. There are some important topics that I really need to talk about, but have no one in my family who can listen or help me. Holding it inside is suffocating.

I’ve learned that I should make it a priority to get out more, share my true self, and develop meaningful relationships with other people. I dream of having a close, supportive, loving group of friends who take care of each other and help each other become our best selves. I know they’re out there, I just have to get out of the house and find them! πŸ™‚

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So those are my lessons learned. I can’t say I *enjoyed* 2017, but it was a very important year for me. Here’s hoping 2018 will be the best one yet! πŸ™‚

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New Years Resolutions 2018!

2018 is here! 2017 was a year of big changes for me, and I plan to make 2018 a year of even bigger changes, growth, and improvement. I’ve given it some serious thought and come up with a few resolutions to follow in the upcoming year.

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Support local businesses

As an owner of a small business, I know how hard it is to compete with the Big Box companies, and how grateful I am for everyone who buys from my shop. Starting in 2018, I’m going to support local businesses in my area as much as I can.

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I think the easiest way to do this is food. Instead of eating at chain restaurants or fast food places, I’m going to eat at local restaurants whenever possible. I’ve already tried one new place, a small deli near my home, and the food was great! I’m also going to see if there are small art and/or office supply shops, instead of relying on Michaels and other chain stores. Another plan is to switch my medical subscription from my current chain store to a local pharmacy. (If you have any other suggestions that I haven’t thought of, please let me know!)

This will also be a cool way to explore the city I live in and get to know its unique people and places a bit more. πŸ™‚

Prioritize my YouTube channel

Up until now, my YouTube channel has been put on the back burner when I get busy with other things. The span of time between planning a video and actually creating it is too long, because I’ve let other responsibilities get in the way. That’s going to change!

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Starting now, making and posting videos will be a priority. I hope to grow my channel with lots of positive and helpful videos, and grow my subscriber base as well.

Make some real art

Going to art school and being a pro artist is one of my biggest “if I could do my life over” regrets. I love to draw and create, but so far it’s always just been for fun (like my Inktober doodles). 2018 will be the year that I get serious about art! I plan to make some kind of professional work, like making some prints, or maybe a painting or two.

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I’ve always been afraid to try to sell my work, because I fear rejection…but this time I’m going to put my big girl panties on and do it anyway. πŸ™‚

Recycling

I used to do a bit of recycling, but stopped a few years back when gas prices shot up (my city doesn’t pick up recycling; you have to drive it out to a recycle center). But now gas is reasonable and I’ve found a closer drop off center, so I’m going to get back into the groove of recycling!

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I’m going to start saving paper, plastic, metal cans, and glass for recycling. I’ve already set out a big plastic bin on my back porch for storing stuff until I get enough to make a trip.

It’s going to feel really good to do my part to keep our planet clean! πŸ™‚

 

So those are my resolutions for 2018. I’m going to make this a great year! How about you – what are your goals?

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The Importance of Sunlight

Are you getting enough sunlight? If you’re not, you’re missing out on a potent health booster, which also happens to be completely free! Here are some of the many benefits of sunlight:

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Vitamin D: The most well-known benefit of sunlight is the production of Vitamin D. Though it’s called a vitamin, Vitamin D is actually a hormone, with several important functions in the body. One of the most important jobs is to aid in the absorption of calcium and magnesium into the bones, and it also helps to strengthen the immune system to fight off disease. Your body can make its own supply of this valuable substance; when sunlight hits the skin, it converts cholesterol into Vitamin D. So not only do you get more D, you’re actually improving your cholesterol levels as well!

Decrease Depression: Sunlight also has effects on other hormones. Exposure to sunlight stimulates the production of Serotonin, otherwise known as the “happy hormone”. Regular sun time can actually improve your mood and help to fight depression and anxiety.Β  Sunlight also decreases the production of Melatonin, the hormone responsible for making you sleepy. Getting some sun as soon as you wake up is a great way to increase alertness and shake away grogginess.

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Decrease SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder): SAD is a common condition during the winter months, when cold temperatures and shorter days can bring on lower moods and intensify depression. Exposure to sunlight can help decrease this condition through Serotonin production. So if you feel more down than normal during the winter months, strap on some mittens and go spend some time in the sun!

It’s Natural: Long ago, humans spent much more time outside than we do today. Our minds and bodies developed under the sun, and modern indoor life conflicts with this natural lifestyle. Spending more time outside in the sunlight gets us closer to nature and our healthiest human state!

Social Interaction: You can get sun in your own backyard, but going to a park or even walking on the sidewalk can have social benefits too. Mental health is increased by positive social interaction, so seeing and talking to other people can have great health benefits. Who knows, you might even meet a new friend or partner! πŸ™‚

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Make it a priority to get some sunlight every day, especially in winter. Obviously too much sun can have negative effects, but a reasonable amount of these warming rays can do wonders for your health and well-being.

My favorite place to get some healthy sunlight is in my backyard, on my swing. I love to sit out there and sew while soaking up some rays. πŸ™‚ Do you have a special place?

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Meditation Tips for Beginners

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Meditation is harder than it looks! Our brains are so overloaded with information these days that sitting and thinking of nothing can be a challenge. I can make it about 15 seconds before my mind is off on some tangent about the electric bill, or that thing I have to do on Wednesday, or that conversation I had with so-and-so last week, or one of about a billion other random thoughts dancing around in my noggin.

Over time I’ve found a few things that help me keep my concentration while meditating. I’m no expert, but maybe these tips will help another newbie-in-training like me! πŸ™‚

1) Focus on a sound. One trick I’ve used is to find some kind of soft, regular sound in the background and focus on it. Things like the sound of a washing machine or an electric fan, the patter of rain, or the chirping of crickets. These sounds don’t require any kind of concentration, since they contain no information like words or music does. But it gives the mind a little something to occupy it so random thoughts have a harder time barging in. Sometimes I’ll try to sync up my breathing with the rhythm of the sound.

2) Use a mantra. Mantras have been used in meditation for a loooong time. I’m still learning about the deep meaning of mantras and the power of sound, but in the meantime they accomplish the same purpose as the first tip I mentioned above: giving your brain a focus point. There are traditional Sanskrit mantras, as well as more modern ones. You can even make up your own mantra! The first personal mantra I created was “Health, Wealth, Success, Friends, Love, Happiness“; which is a simple listing of the things I wanted in my life. Another one I frequently use is the sequence from the Hawaiian philosophy of Ho’oponopono: “I love you, I’m sorry, Please forgive me, Thank you.” I’ve found that reciting a mantra can be very calming.

3) Speak out loud. Brain stuff is probably supposed to be in the brain, but I’ve found that it helps me to speak mantras or affirmations out loud. It takes just enough attention that the mind can’t go off wandering all over the place as easily. Of course, this could get weird if there are other people around, but it works great when you’re alone.

4) Legs up the wall position. I find it easiest to meditate in the “legs up the wall” yoga position. I have no idea why this helps, but for me it’s much more effective than sitting. And it’s supposed to be good for your brain and organs anyway, so it can’t hurt! I have no explanation for this one, but why not give it a try?

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I hope these tips are helpful for someone! And if you have any tips for me, feel free to let me know. I’m still learning. πŸ™‚


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