Bringing the Energy

Successful professional casual man celebrating work success and raising arms against city background on sunset. Job achievement or goal concept.

This guy is ready to bring the energy. Are you?

All of my life I have always wondered, “what is the secret to living the happiest, most successful, and most positive life possible?”

Is it deeply and unapologetically loving ourselves?

Is it the extremely underrated skill of being able to push through intense and unrelenting pain in order to reach our goals?

Is it the life-saving ability to bounce back quickly from the crap that life throws at us?

Is it simply avoiding these 7 life-destroying pitfalls on a daily basis?

Actually, yes to all of the above.

But there’s more.

There’s an additional piece to this positivity puzzle that isn’t given nearly as much attention as it deserves, and I want to change that today.

The additional piece is energy.

The question is: Are you using it to your advantage?

Let’s find out. [Read more…]


GUEST POST: Finding Your Voice

Vintage microphone on table on light blue background

Are you ready to find your voice? Your best life may depend on it.

Shola’s Note: Hey Solutionists! In my effort to introduce you to some amazing people who are working hard to make this world a more positive place, I have a treat for you! On this month’s Solutionist Spotlight, I have the honor of presenting career strategist, positivity enthusiast and corporate trainer extraordinaire, Sherry Dodge. Besides being an excellent writer, speaker and overall human being, she is also one of the most positive people I have ever known in my 40 years on this earth. So, without further ado, here’s Sherry!

If you’re anything like me, there have been times in your life when you have had trouble speaking up.

Maybe it was telling your boss that you’re not able to work late, or telling your friend how you really feel about the new person they’re dating, or committing to that social event that you really don’t want to go to but feel obligated to go to anyway.

Or maybe it was something really simple, like not speaking up about where you want to go for dinner.

So often, we make the choice not to speak up. And we do it because we are thinking about all of the potential consequences that might occur if we do speak up.

  • What if she gets mad when I share my true opinion and it challenges her opinion?
  • What if there will be a really uncomfortable awkward silence after I tell him how I really feel?
  • What if I come across sounding stupid, or worse, incompetent?
  • What if I get rejected?
  • What if there is a long-lasting consequence to what I say that means my life is going to be changed…forever?

We can come up with “what-ifs” for days.

Unfortunately, “what-ifs” typically prevent us from taking action. They cause us to focus on the worst-case scenario–and that builds fear which can be paralyzing.

The truth is, we are not great at predicting the future. As hard as we try to predict every possible reaction or outcome, we often aren’t very accurate anyway.

Now, I am the first person to say that I tend to over-analyze everything.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t give careful thought and consideration to how you live and what you say, and to consider potential consequences, but, at a certain point, the “what-ifs” start to take over, and they serve as excuses for not facing our fears. They become excuses for keeping things status quo.

That is a dangerous place to be because it makes us feel stuck. Our own thoughts prevent us from taking action. [Read more…]


Forgive to be Free

A vintage ball and chain with an open shackle on an old prison cell block floor lit by overhead lights

It won’t be easy, but freedom is within reach.

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong.” -Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom and forgiveness–two powerful words that are critical to living our most positive lives possible.

While I don’t expect much of an argument about the importance of freedom, I don’t expect as many people to embrace the life-saving positivity of forgiveness.


Because it’s hard. Really hard. In fact, I don’t know if there is an act in the world that requires more inner strength than the act of forgiveness.

Don’t believe me?

Let’s say that your significant other cheated on you and gave you an incurable STD, or your babysitter severely burned your toddler because she left him unattended while she was messing around on Facebook, or your coworker spread a vicious lie about you that was believed by your boss and it ended up getting you fired and destroying your career.

Would it be easy for you to show forgiveness in any of those situations? If so, you’re officially a better person than I am.

Extreme examples? Okay, fair enough. But many of us struggle with forgiving much lesser acts than the ones mentioned above, don’t we?

When someone deeply hurts us (or someone we love), one of the easiest and most natural things to do is to hold on to that bitterness, anger and hatred for as long as possible. In extreme cases, we use all of our power and strength to direct our negative energy toward the person/people who hurt us.

I’ve been there and it’s still something that I struggle with often.

In order to make the forgiveness process a little easier for all of us, let’s start by blowing up some of the myths about what real forgiveness is all about. [Read more…]


3 Steps to Overcome Worry and Find Peace

Depression In Young Age

It’s possible to find peace.

I have a small admission to make.

I tend to worry a lot.

No, I’m not a chronic worrier that sweats the small stuff, like if my favorite brand of green tea is in stock at the grocery store, or if my favorite wide-receiver will be available in my fantasy football draft.

I worry about if I’m being the best father that I can possibly be for my little girls. I worry about whether or not this blog is making a meaningful difference in anyone’s life. I worry about if I’m making the best choices on a daily basis to improve my physical, emotional and mental health.

A few years ago, these worries would eat me alive every waking moment of my life. Thankfully, those days are over. Things are very different in my life now, and I have these two simple, life-changing epiphanies to thank for it:

1) Worrying serves no useful purpose whatsoever.

2) I have complete control to ensure that worrying doesn’t control my life and mess with my inner peace.

I know that I will probably never stop worrying, but I always have the power to determine the influence that my worries will have over my life.

This is a game-changing concept, and if you struggle with excessive worrying, hopefully this blog post will help. [Read more…]


GUEST POST: Tough Love

Couple Silhouette Breaking Up A Relation

Setting clear boundaries may be tough, but it’s necessary.

Shola’s Note: Hey Solutionists! In my effort to introduce you to some amazing people who are working hard to make this world a more positive place, I have a treat for you! On this month’s Solutionist Spotlight, I have the honor of presenting the founder of the blog Nursing My Appetite. and my dear friend, Whitney Hoover. Besides being one of the nicest people in the universe, she’s also smarter than the average bear when it comes to understanding this journey we call life (as you will soon read.) So, without further ado, here’s Whitney!

If there was a people-pleaser club, I’d be a shoe-in for President of the local chapter.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve fostered a natural desire and instinct to do anything that I can to bring joy, ease, relief and comfort to those around me. It’s a quality that I’m proud of and deeply value, but it’s also one half of a double-edged sword.

Being a people-pleaser means that I’m also not all that great at setting boundaries or saying no–usually out of the (admittedly ridiculous) fear of disappointing friends and strangers alike. I routinely ignore both gut and reason, freely and eagerly offering precious time, money, energy and ultimately mental health for the sake of accommodating others.

Thankfully, now I know the life-saving power of setting boundaries. [Read more…]


Knowing When to End Friendships

Single Woman Alone Swinging On The Beach

It’s always better to be alone than in bad company.

Do you know the one thing that I can guarantee you about every relationship in your life right now?

It will eventually end.

It’s true, isn’t it?

Every relationship that you’re in right now will end, either voluntarily or through death. That is the one thing that ties together every relationship that you currently have, or ever will have, for the rest of your life.


Some people might find this little fun fact somewhat depressing, but I don’t at all. To me, this is overwhelmingly positive because it reminds me to do two simple, but life-altering things on a daily basis:

1) Deeply cherish all of the enriching and healthy relationships in my life, because I don’t know when they will end.

2) Stop wasting my limited time on earth in unhealthy relationships that drain me and bring me mindless drama.

I know that this is painfully obvious, but the key to a positive life is to maximize the amount of healthy relationships in our lives, while minimizing the amount of unhealthy ones.

This all sounds simple enough, but it’s possible that you might have some negative influences in your life who you feel that you’re stuck with, like co-workers, family members or spouses (remember, you’re not stuck with them, unless you choose to be stuck with them.)

But what about our friends?

Having co-workers, family members and spouses who bring misery, pain and drama into our lives is bad enough, but aren’t we doubling-down on crazy by allowing friends into our lives who do the same?

I think so.  [Read more…]