I am happy to report that since my initial post about my dance goal of accomplishing splits on both sides (initial post here), I have made TREMENDOUS strides!

I’m still a ways from completion of the goal but how exciting that I can visibly SEE the differences made in just two short months!!

Right split – in April the furthest I could get to was ~ 12 inches from the ground… But, now, I’m about 6 inches from the ground. OMG!

Left split – in April the furthest I could get to was ~ 6 inches from the ground… And now, I’m about 2 inches… yes that’s correct – 2 inches from the ground. Whoo-hoo!

I’m still astounded by my progress!  Though I’ll admit that it hasn’t been easy, quite painful in fact, as I attempt to convince my leg, groin, and hip muscles that getting into a split is possible at 42 (even though I haven’t been in one since my teen years!)…

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But in spite of the pain – little by little – improvement was made. Seeing myself make these physical gains has been quite encouraging… a great reminder that big things are accomplished by taking small steps on a consistent basis…

It reminds me that we Choose what Tomorrow looks like by the Choices we make TODAY!

I can’t wait to post my next update, as I anticipate continued GROWTH.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

 

Getting advice from Captain Hook…

Life is SUCH a roller coaster… or maybe it’s just my life… who knows… But as I sit here reflecting – there have been so many HIGH moments, on the one hand – and then there have been the LOWS! The moments where I doubt and I’m ready to throw in the towel! UGH! There have been many of those!

Here I am replaying in my mind the challenges I’ve faced to reach present day. And for a moment I am overwhelmed, because guess what – despite my long journey, there is STILL so much I desire… still so much I have to accomplish! Where will I find the energy? What will help me to keep going? I’m not sure but I know I can’t quit…

This determined spirit of mine reminds me of lyrics that have stuck in my mind, since going to see Finding Neverland this week. The play was awesome, inspiring, and it’s these lines (sung by the character playing the role of Peter Pan Playwright, JM Barrie) that I can’t get out of my head:

I’ve got to be stronger
Reach up higher
Must dig deeper
Find the fire

Feel enlightened
Can’t be frightened anymore

 

I can run now so much faster
Now defeat won’t be my master

For to conquer the demons
I won’t have to wait any longer
I’ve got to be stronger

 

So I just have to keep going… I have to keep proceeding forward until I see the results I desire. And in those moments where I wonder “how much further?”, I’ll just remind myself of the lines sung by the Captain Hook character:

You’ll see in time
You will survive
Too soon to run
Too late to hide
It’s your destiny
Every pace, every stride

 

What a journey!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Tightening the Money Belt

I am in the midst of saving for a major investment. The plan:

save $25,000 by October 1 2018

Whew!

Initially, I was excited as I thought about how amazing it’s going to feel when I reach my goal. But then other emotions soon arose. I began to feel overwhelmed and somewhat resentful about the restrictions such a goal would require. How in the heck would I be able to do anything, fun? Saving like this would mean scrapping my international travel plans for the year, forgoing birthday travel, and this last one truly breaks my heart – it would mean not being able to complete a highly anticipated week long dance intensive! Sigh 😦

Saving is No FUN!

I know – I know, without discipline and sacrifice, success is unattainable. But it sure doesn’t feel so good…

For a few days I grumbled this way to myself and even wallowed in a bit of self-pity, until I decided to search for the silver lining. It took me awhile, but I eventually found it…

Since saving will have me grounded and pinching pennies, I will just have to search for frugal ways to nurture my creative side! And being local will also give me time to get focused on a few writing and dancing goals that I have for myself…

  • Writing 2 books
  • Getting into a split on both sides

So… For the next 2 months I plan to dance. write. save. repeat… and hopefully, before I know it, I will have accomplished several of my goals!

Time will tell!  Until next time…

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Discipline… it’s not a bad word.

I’ve always been a HUGE believer of the connection between the mind-body-spirit… However, this lesson hit very close to home when I found myself feeling lethargic, lackluster, and sad. It wasn’t until I took a B12 vitamin, upon the encouragement of my sister, that I found some of my usual vitality returning! This experience served as a great reminder that if you want to be healthy you have to tend to each area. The secret to health or the proverbial ‘fountain of youth’ is to achieve balance in mind, body, and spirit…

Even the Bible mentions the importance of mind-body-spirit:

Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth (3 John 1:2)

So God is reminding us that health requires total body health. This sounds like such simple common sense, that you may even wonder why I’m writing about it…

Well, as we know, often the things that appear simple and common are often the most challenging!

To have total body health, we must be disciplined and being disciplined isn’t easy… because even if we can convince ourselves to get started on the path, it seems darn near impossible to sustain and stay the course…

So what shall you do?

You must FIRST start by disciplining your mind and then the rest becomes possible.

Here are a few tips to help you on the path to train your mind:

  • First identify a target – what is it that you’re desiring?
  • Next, visualize in your mind how you will feel once you’ve actually reached the goal
  • Finally, think of 2-3 really simple steps that you can begin immediately that will lead you in the direction of your goal

Remember it’s never too late to get in the habit of developing a disciplined mind!

I’ll leave you with a few useful quotes about discipline:

“To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one’s family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one’s own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him” Buddha, A Buddhist sage

“We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment” Jim Rohn, Entrepreneur

“It was character that got us out of bed, commitment that moved us into action, and discipline that enabled us to follow through” Zig Ziglar, Author/Motivational Speaker

Get Disciplined! Stop TRYING and choose to DO IT! Did-You-Know-760x760

YOU CAN!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

Nausea, Cramps, & Gas… Oh MY! Surviving Food Poisoning…

I have been sick with food poisoning for twenty-one LONG days! It’s been awful… I didn’t know which symptom was worse – my choices: fevers, stomach cramps, bloating, stomach pressure, nausea, and the minute-by-minute runs to the bathroom. NOT FUN! By the 16th day I was so OVER the whole experience and at my wits end! I didn’t know what else to do, in order to get well.

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I drank teas (peppermint & chamomile), drank cola, drank ginger ale, ate soup & crackers, ate rice, did a colon cleanse, and ate yogurt. Nothing seemed to do the trick. On day 16 I decided I would ignore the stomach cramps, and still do my weekly walk to the park. I read somewhere on the Internet that exercise is sometimes helpful for aiding stomach issues.

As I walked, initially I could barely stand up straight and forget taking note of the pretty day, I was just trying to get down the street without having an accident in my pants. However, I refused to quit and after a half-mile my muscles started to loosen and the walking seemed to ease some of the gas in my digestive system – Ah finally some relief! I could finally look up and take note of the lush greenery, pretty blue sky, and warm sun. It was a beautiful day.

After walking a mile, I decided to turn back and head on home. On the return walk home, I thought about how good this small window of freedom from my symptoms felt and I didn’t want to let this feeling go! I clutched by stomach and prayed “God please remove any and all foreign objects that do not belong.”

foodpoisoningTwo days after my walk I opted to do a second colon cleanse and I think it did the trick.

It caused me to spend two more days running to the bathroom but I think I finally got whatever didn’t belong inside of me, out of me…

Not sure what finally worked, maybe it was the combination of remedies, maybe it was my body running through the natural course of the poisoning, or maybe it was my little prayer to God.

It doesn’t really matter what lead to my healing, but something shifted inside of me in these last 21 days. I have a newfound appreciation for health and I NOW roll over thankful for it every day!

Two quotes that ran through my mind during those days of being doubled over in stomach, colon, and kidney pain and misery:

  • “Dear Jesus, do something.”
    Vladimir NabokovAuthor
  • “The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.”
    Søren Kierkegaard, Author

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

Which one is it? Problem, Challenge, OR Opportunity?

I woke up early this morning ready to begin my day. I stood in the mirror going through my typical routine. During this time, I usually allow my mind to wander as it may. On this day, various thoughts ran through my mind. I thought about my soon to be published children’s book, I thought about the bloated look I want to get rid of around my torso, and I even thought about the fact that I was feeling quite happy this morning. I paused to ponder that last thought a bit more. I was HAPPY… not sure why, but I was… It wasn’t because my problems miraculously disappeared and it definitely wasn’t because I somehow found a way to put aside all rumination about my difficulties.

I was happy because it that particular moment all was well. And as long as I didn’t veer into the past or too far into the future, I could feel happy.

Isn’t it funny how HAPPINESS can be achieved by staying in the PRESENT MOMENT? I once heard a speaker say: “your mind is your most powerful tool.” He also noted that the MIND is so powerful that in the bible it is stated that we worship the Lord with our mind.

And the bible isn’t the only source that discusses the mind’s strength; take a look at a few famous quotes:

  • Not he is great who can alter matter, but he who can alter my state of mind” – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Poet
  • How different our lives are when we really know what is deeply important to us, and keeping that picture in mind, we manage ourselves each day to be and to do what really matters most” – Stephen Covey, Author
  • The secret of living a life of excellence is merely a matter of thinking thoughts of excellence. Really, it’s a matter of programming our minds with the kind of information that will set us free” Charles Swindoll, Writer

So if the mind is so powerful, why aren’t we all using our minds to its fullest potential? I believe the answer to that question points to the two infamous culprits – Fear & Doubt…

Fear will cause you to be frozen, immobilized from taking any necessary steps forward

And Doubt will cause you to question yourself so that even when you take a necessary step forward you stop in your tracks or even turn back to retreat to the familiar.

However, success, in any endeavor and towards any goal will require you to use the strength and power of your own mind to overcome fear and conquer doubt!

I leave you with these lyrics from the song Hold On by James Fortune & FIYA. I hope it encourages you on your journey –

Know that flowers bloom when rain falls

You just hold on

The tears may come, but stand to the end

Remember you CAN succeed in spite of the fear and despite the doubts!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

I Accept Happiness & CHOOSE to Win

Have you ever wondered where true HAPPINESS comes from? Or how to have JOY and PEACE in your daily life?

Well, I think I’ve discovered the secret… it’s ACCEPTANCE. Your ability to be okay with life, as it is, plays a significant role in being able to attain HAPPINESS, JOY, and PEACE.

This may seem too simple but it is the true essence of a happy life. When we learn to let go and go with the twists and turns of life, we allow ourselves to experience the beauty that is life. Old beliefs that adversity and struggle means the world is against us can be seen from a new perspective. Adversity and struggle provides opportunities to grow, expand, and live!

Author Annie Dillard once said: “If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair… or go into business. You’ve got to jump off cliffs and build your wings on the way down.” Her message being that we build strength and we improve because we are willing to remain strong in the face of adversity and struggle.

I must admit I did not always carry such a disposition, and to be quite honest I still have my days where I moan “whoa is me… why am I being challenged so?” However, then I remind myself that I am the one who determines how I handle life situations. And if I’m the one in control, then that means I’m the one who can choose to WIN, no matter what obstacle is before me! That simple shift of giving myself back the power to choose has helped me to endure even the toughest of days…

But that’s the choice I made… How willing are YOU to live a happy life?

Will you be courageous in the face of whatever difficulties you’re currently facing?

Or as Author Joe Vitale would say: “how good can you stand it?”

If you can answer that yes you want happiness and yes you will remain courageous, then strap yourself in and prepare to live a life that rivals your wildest dreams! Because that’s the ride I’m on, will you join me?

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Website: www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

Stop Procrastinating – Live Life!

Over the course of a single day you might be responsible for making countless decisions. So many responsibilities to handle that at times it seems dizzying. I sit here pondering such thoughts as I gaze at my to do list. Am I the only one who feels a subtle hint of being overwhelmed? And is it just me that thinks about the simplicity of ignoring the list and watching a favorite show on my DVR recorder?

Alas, I don’t do either. The responsible Donna knows that procrastination just makes the task all the more harder to attack. But where does one find the energy and the motivation to do what it takes, even when you just don’t feel like it?

Motivation and Energy come from visualizing and focusing on some tangible and desirable outcome. In other words, you are more apt to keep going and keep working when you have something that you’re working towards.

So if you’ve ever struggling with procrastination or perceiving yourself as just plain lazy, consider this quote by Tony Robbins:

People are not lazy. They simply have impotent goals – that is, goals that do not inspire them.”

Now, take some time to reexamine your goals. Do you have something that you desire? What will be required in order for you to obtain that desire? How motivated are you to obtain it? As you consider these questions, you may experience a renewed sense of focus. And before you know it, you’ll feel energized and ready to tackle the day! So go out and make the most of it.

However, do take note that it’s okay to have down time and it’s healthy to devote energy to being quiet, still, and at rest. But it’s critical to realize that there is a time and place for everything. Success requires a time for productivity, as well as a time for relaxation. As Benjamin Franklin once stated: “Leisure is the time for doing something useful. This leisure the diligent person will obtain the lazy one never.”

I wish you the courage and fortitude necessary for completing each and every one of your goals.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Want Success? Then you must Ask and Receive…

How specific are YOUR requests?

In life we are each on a journey, and along the way there are various things we desire, dream, and want. However, when I look around I see that there are those who attain what they want, and those who seem to fall shy of crossing the finish line. I wonder, what is the difference between the people that make it and the others that don’t? Is it based on luck or chance? Or is it based on the idea that some people are just more fortunate than others?

Hmmm…. Well it can’t be luck or the idea that “some people are just more fortunate” because there are many who have been elevated to success but they started out from humble, meager beginnings. So what is it?

I wonder if the missing piece is that the successful are very specific in their requests. Let me explain…

The bible suggests that we should “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7). I have often heard this verse, as it is commonly cited. So much so that even secular references have been made to this idea in books on the Law of Attraction. But I found something even more interesting when I went to re-read this verse. I discovered another translation of the Matthew 7:7 verse, it states:

Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you – Matthew 7:7, New Living Translation

Wow… now this is really powerful because the key word in that verse is KEEP! Keep on asking, keep on seeking, and keep on knocking…

So it would seem that the successful have attained that status because they kept on asking, seeking, and knocking on various doors until they found the very specific requests of their heart.

I am seeking from God: a book deal for my memoir, a job that is not toxic/constantly stressful, a supportive husband, a biological baby, and financial freedom.

What things are you seeking for your life?

In the Untethered Soul Michael Singer states:

“Does anything in God’s creation, other than the human mind, actually pass judgment? Nature just gives and gives to whoever will receive. Should you choose not to receive, it doesn’t punish you. You punish yourself because you choose not to receive”

My hope for you is that you find the courage to keep asking for, seeking, and knocking on the doors of your dreams. And may you be ready to receive the overflow when it comes!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna