3 Money-Making Opportunities for Recovering Addicts

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Those new to the recovery journey can have significant problems making ends meet while they search for their first job opportunity. This time in your life can be full of both the excitement and fear of a new beginning. Your new, sober life has just begun, but the question of what next has yet to be answered. This is a very vulnerable time for many recovering addicts. The stress of everyday living is beginning to become apparent and new coping strategies are being tested.

It is incredibly important to find a way to sustain yourself in this new chapter of your life while practicing self-care (getting good sleep, eating a proper diet, exercise, etc.) and maintaining your sobriety. Here are some side hustles to help get you started.


Teach Music Lessons

Teaching music lessons is a fun and easy way to make some extra money. If you’ve ever learned to play an instrument, now is the time to put that knowledge to use.

You don’t have to be an expert to teach someone to play an instrument – you just have to be better than your students. Many adults who have ever taken music lessons have enough knowledge and skill to teach absolute beginners.

According to Music Industry, you need to meet three main requirements to teach younger children: patience, competence with an instrument, and the ability to communicate clearly. You do not need a music degree of any sort to teach music lessons from your home, though you should be honest if you are asked by a potential student.

If you’re teaching higher-level students, you should likely have some credentials. Teaching a small child vs. an older teenager who wants to be professional is obviously different. However, these credentials don’t necessarily have to include a college degree.


Sell Homemade Items

It is becoming increasingly difficult to find someone who can hand-make high-quality items. Fewer people are learning traditional crafts like knitting, wood carving, and embroidery. This lack of knowledge makes these handmade products very valuable and sought after.

If you can make something with your hands, you might want to consider opening an Etsy shop to sell them online. This type of store allows you to reach a broader audience than you could by yourself and enables you to sell things beyond your community.

Of course, opening an Etsy shop does require a little bit of know how. Merely putting your items online and sitting back will probably not produce many sells. Handmadeology recommends doing lots of research before making the leap and opening up an Etsy shop. The more research you do in the beginning, the more likely your shop is to succeed in the long run.

Become a Pet Sitter

Pet sitting is generally new but is increasing in popularity. Many customers love the idea of being able to leave their pets in their home and have someone watch over them there. If you love pets, this might be the side gig for you.

Becoming a pet sitter is not difficult. All you genuinely need is reliable transportation, a desire to look after someone else’s pets, and a client. The startup cost of becoming a pet sitter is understandably small, which makes beginning extremely easy.

While you can become a pet sitter with little to no training, you might want to consider joining a pet-sitting association, like Pet Sitters International. This organization offers training and lists all their certified pet sitters in one database, making it easy for potential customers to find you.

Recovering addicts sometimes have difficulties finding a job. Not only do you have a gap in your resume, but with the shift in priorities that comes with recovering, your past profession might be inappropriate for your new life. Look for unconventional ways to make money, such as becoming a pet sitter or even selling handmade objects. These things can be great ways to bring in money while you search for a full-time job. Or, they might become your full-time job!


Photo Credit: Pexels

Being Silent is Good Self-Care

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We live in a world of noise.

Not all of this noise is bad. There’s the noise of your children as they play, the noise of friends eating dinner together.

Noise comes in many forms, though, and sometimes it can be overwhelming: a stressful job, a difficult relationship with a family member, too many personal commitments with too little time to complete them. All of these stressors and more create noise in our lives - noise in our minds and hearts.

The noise of stress, overwork, a difficult relationship, or the general busyness of life can rob us of our peace. Especially as the holidays approach, it can be hard to find peace in our hectic lives.

Take a Break from the Noise

When there’s too much noise in your life, a way to counteract the noise is to find silence. Sometimes you need to find the silence by being silent yourself.

When we talk about “being silent,” this does not mean stop talking to your family or friends. It does not mean to stop speaking out about things that matter to you, or to simply let difficulties or challenges in life roll you over and crush you.

To “be silent” is to take a break from the noise of life. If we equate “noise” with the busyness and stress of simply living, then to “be silent” or to find the silence is to give yourself a moment’s respite away from these stressors.

It’s not usually possible to simply quit a stressful job just like that, and we’re not advocating that you ignore your family or other responsibilities. But it’s important to take care of you. Here are some ways that you can find some silence away from the noise:

  • Take 15-30 minutes first thing in the morning when you get up to meditate and to begin your day in silence. Don’t check your phone, your emails, don’t read the newspaper. If you need to get up a little earlier so that you can begin your day away from other people, do so. Take a few minutes before you begin your day to meditate on things that are important to you or what you’re thankful for.
  • End each day in a similar way. Turn off the TV, computer, and phone, and read a book or meditate on your day before you go to sleep. Choosing peaceful, happy, or thankful thoughts right before you to go sleep can help set you up for a more peaceful beginning to your next day when you wake up.
  • Take a break from the noise during the day, especially if you feel overwhelmed. Even a five-minute walk by yourself can help you re-set your inner balance.
  • Exercise. Yes, it can be hard to find the time to exercise, but exercise does not have to be long or complicated. A twenty-minute walk around the block every morning can be helpful. Exercise helps blood flow and can help you clear your mind.
  • Listen to music. No, music is not silence, but use the music to replace some of the daily noise. Turn off the TV news and replace it with 30 minutes of your favorite uplifting songs or relaxing instrumental music.
  • Be thankful. Sometimes we feel stressed and overwhelmed because all we can see is what’s urgent in our schedules or everything’s that going wrong in our lives. Focusing on your blessings can help your mind to relax and refocus on what really matters to you. Make a list of what you’re thankful for. It can be anything, big or small. Are you thankful that your children are getting good grades in school? Are you thankful that you have warm clothes for the winter? Are you thankful that you had your favorite coffee this morning? Write down anything and everything that you’re thankful for.

During this holiday season, take a break from the noise and find your moment of silence.

Knowing When to Slow Down and Care for You

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Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but the moments that take our breath away.

You are probably a caring person.

You care about your job or your business and you want to succeed and do well. You care about your family - you want to provide for them, keep them safe, and spend quality time with them. You care about your life - you want to be happy and healthy and comfortable. Most people who care for others in a selfless manner do so because of a genuine desire to help and be of service to others.

Pause and ask yourself this question. How has your body been feeling lately? Are you overly tired and you just can’t find the source of the tiredness? Do you generally just push on through the fatigue… grabbing an extra shot of latte, eating sugary items, junk foods, or an energy drink?

Does any of this sound like you? Are you really listening to what your body is telling you? Now, there is one central element that ties all this together, all the things you care about: that central element is YOU.  When I ask my clients could they unpack their crazy lives, they usually tell me that can’t because they believe they are the only one who can perform the job. Part of the problem is they don’t know how to delegate duties or say no when they are overwhelmed or overloaded. If you push your body long enough without self-care there is a high probability you will get sick or have an accident. But when you make a practice of consistent self-care it supports the body, mind and spirit.

Taking Care of Yourself

You care so much about other things and other people that sometimes it’s easy to forget about caring for YOU. It’s important to take a little time to be “selfish” and care for you, because if you’re suffering or lacking in care, then it’s harder to take care of everyone else. More importantly it hinders you from living a full life. We only have one, you know.

Have you ever flown on an airplane? Before takeoff, the flight attendant runs through all the security features about how to operate the seat belt and such, and also shows everyone what to do if the airbags come down from the ceiling in the event of an accident. What does the flight attendant say? You should always put the air mask on YOURSELF first, and then turn to help your child or see if your seat mate needs help with their mask.

Of course you want to help your child or your neighbor with their air mask, but if you can’t breathe yourself, then you’re not able to help someone else. Self-care is important.

Start off by making a list of all the different responsibilities you have acquired or volunteered to do. Next to each chore write down why it’s important that you do it. Would your job suddenly stop functioning if you were sick? Could your friend find someone to babysit her children if you were not available? Would your husband pick up his own laundry if you couldn’t? It probably never crossed your mind. Yes, the solutions are not always easy but I would venture to believe that many things you “currently do” could just as well be done by someone else. The world won’t end if you decide to take a break, believe me.

Knowing When to Take Care of Yourself

Most of everyday life is not as serious as a de-pressurized airplane cabin where you need a breathing mask. But self-care is still important, because stress, sickness, or a hectic schedule can interfere with you taking proper care of your life and your loved ones.

If you’re under a lot of stress right now, then it’s important to take some time for self-care. Stress can make you tired, disagreeable and unpleasant to be around, or even can contribute to sickness. You want to give your work and your family your best because you care about them, and stress can interfere with that.

So how do you know when to slow down and take care of yourself? Here are a few ideas:

  • A high-pressure time at work or a stressful situation at home may seem like the worst time to take a day off or to be selfish. But you need it in order to care for yourself so that you can handle the stress.
  • Take an evening off and go on a date. Do something fun with your spouse, your best friend, or even just by yourself. And your “date night” doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, either. A movie night at home with Netflix and popcorn, a long walk in the park, or even just lying in bed and reading a book.
  • Eat healthy. Eating healthy can often be hard even at the best of times, and if you’re stressed or life is hectic, healthy eating is even harder. But that’s the most important time to eat healthy. Putting the best foods into your body gives you the best fuel to be strong and function at your best. Pizza delivery may be quick and easy, and ice cream is nice comfort food. But for the best self-care, try a healthier meal like baked fish instead of a burger, steamed vegetables instead of fries, or a fruit salad instead of doughnuts.
  • Get some extra sleep. Again, that can be hard to do, especially when you’re stressed. But stressful times is when sleep is the most important. Be a little selfish and turn off the TV an hour earlier, or ask your spouse to get the kids bathed and ready for bed so that you can turn in early one night.
  • Schedule in a self-care day once a month or once a week. Put it on the calendar, just like you do for all your other appointments. Make sure that you don’t forget about caring for yourself!

These tips are a great place to start with your self-care process. If you need more help with your self-care, or your have questions about your life or your goals, please feel free to get in touch with me today! I care and I am here to help!

Recognizing Your Gifts, Loving Your Gifts

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Everyone has gifts. Did you know that?

Sometimes when we think of a “gifted” person, we think of a brilliant artist, or a famous surgeon. We think that gifts are reserved only for the elite few, or someone with more knowledge or experience that we have. But this isn’t true. Everyone has gifts. Everyone is uniquely gifted in some way.

How many of us don’t seem to notice or even recognize that we have gifts? What is it that you do mindlessly without even consciously thinking? A gift is characterized as a natural skill, talent, or endowment. More simplistically gifts are; “things that others can’t do that we do easily.” Talents, on the other hand, are inherited or developed through training. Gifts as I see it are somewhat mystical.

What are My Gifts?

This is a question you have possibly asked yourself at one point or another. And you may have decided that you don’t have any gifts. We exercise our gifts without even knowing it, we just assume that everybody has the same ability; but they don’t.

Everyone has gifts The first step to figuring out what your unique gifts are is to understand and believe that you really do have gifts. It’s not easy but take some time to name these gifts, then  acknowledge out loud to yourself that you do these gifts well. Pay attention and recognize when you are operating in a gift and give thanks.

So what are your gifts? Begin by making a list of your strengths. Write down everything that you are good at and everything positive that you know about yourself. These may not seem very special to you, but write them down anyway. Your list can have anything on it, like:

  • I am kind.
  • I am good at math.
  • People like my sense of humor.
  • I am a hard worker and a good employee.
  • I am a safe and courteous driver.
  • I am healthy and physically fit.

Put as many strengths and positive features on your list as you can. For me one of my gifts is storytelling and another one is adding humor. I love those gifts about myself because they validate who I am.

Learning to Love your Gifts

Start focusing on these strengths. Pick out a few of your best strengths, the ones that you feel are the most important to you. Which of these strengths do you believe can be the most helpful to you and to others?

These strengths don’t necessarily have to relate to your job or position in life - at least not in an obvious way. If you wrote “I like to encourage other people” as one of your strengths, that is a gift that can be used anywhere. People in all walks of life need encouragement, someone to speak a kind word or cheer them on. The gift of encouragement is a powerful gift that you can use at home, on the job, and in everyday life.

By focusing on your strengths, and realizing how your strengths can help other people, you can learn to love your gifts. The amazing thing about strength - whether it’s a strength of character, an artistic strength, or even just strength in your muscles - is that the more you use it, the stronger it gets and the better you feel about yourself.

The more you are kind and gentle to people, the kinder you get and the more people are drawn to your gentle spirit. The more you write, the better you get at writing and communicating your thoughts through words. The more you run, the stronger your muscles become and the faster you can run. The more you share yourself with others the more you feel spiritually connected to life.

If you want help or guidance in growing your strengths or developing your gifts, please contact me today! I am here to help guide you and coach you so that you can be the uniquely gifted person you were meant to be.

The Art of Change... Telling it Like it Is!

Do you ever feel stuck in your life? Whether it’s stuck in a bad relationship, a dead-end job, or struggling with your self-image, everyone has felt stuck. When we get stuck in life it can feel as though we are walking around trapped in our own mental prison. 

Whatever your prison looks like, one point remains unanimously true: we all want freedom. The wonderful difference between your personal prison and an actual prison is you hold the key to your freedom. The key is change.

Changing aspects of your life can seem daunting and overwhelming. However, there are simple and easy steps to mastering the art of change. Making successful changes in your life requires three things: a healthy mindset, planned action, and gracious reflection. Always remembering to be grateful for what you have right now.

Having A Healthy Mindset

The first step to mastering the art of change is having a healthy mindset. A healthy mindset will help you pursue change for the right reasons. 

Understanding where you currently are in life is very important. Take time being honest with yourself about your current situation. Admit to yourself what is causing you to be stuck. Don’t be afraid to dig deep into this. If it’s a person who is holding you back, a job that is draining you, or a habit that is hurting you, be honest about it. Honesty with self is challenging; it does not affect your self-esteem as we often think it does. It holds us to a high standard and sets us free. As the old cliche goes, “The truth will set you free.”

Once you have evaluated where you are, a healthy mindset requires you to dream about your ideal life. If you are making a change in your life you should be motivated by the outcome you desire. Whether it’s healthier friendships, a more fulfilling job, or a stronger self-image, picture it. Sit. Imagine your life with your ideal outcome.

Knowing where you are and where you want to be will help you understand the importance of change and motivate you to make change happen. The final piece of having a healthy mindset about change is understanding you have everything you need right inside you. In no way are you trying to change who you are. You are wonderful and your ideal self is right inside you. Changing your environment and lifestyle will only help to bring out your ideal self and let your inner strength shine. I challenge you to be daring and give it a try.

Change Through Planned Action

Now that you have created a healthy mindset for yourself it’s time to take action. The action is a key part in the art of change.

All successful action, and therefore change, requires a plan. Setting a strong plan takes time and detail. Set aside time for planning. Begin planning by writing out your goal. Maybe it is something like living a happier life, adding more value to the world, or being a healthier person. 

Next, list the major change you need to make in your life. For instance, moving away from a toxic relationship, finding a career that better fits who you are, or beginning a workout regimen. 

From this goal, work backward, breaking it down into steps you need to take. Some examples of steps to take might be: making new friends, researching career opportunities, or getting a gym membership. 

One of the most important steps you must include in your plan is setting aside time in your life to work towards your goals. Life can be busy and your goals can get set aside if you are not careful in setting aside time to prioritize making change happen. As you continue to add to your plan, know that it will never be the perfect plan and you will be adding to it as you come across new challenges.

Now that you have a plan laid out, begin to take action. Start small, taking some of the easier first steps. An easier first step might be engaging in small talk with someone you enjoy talking with, evaluating your job strengths, or going for a walk. Starting with the smaller steps allows you to practice change without pushing yourself too hard. From these small first steps, you can build confidence and continue moving forward until you reach your ultimate goal.

At times, your confidence may falter. When this happens, stick to your plan and keep moving forward. When you come across a roadblock, keep moving forward. Know that it is okay to have small failures as you move towards change. Mastering the art of change doesn’t require perfection, only persistence. So, even when you hit a bump or face a challenge keep pushing forward. 

Try not to be sidetracked by negative thinking about the issues you are facing now; they are only temporary. Continue to keep a positive outlook in the face of difficulties and believe me “this too will soon pass.” Keep in mind that this is only temporary. Next, begin to replace negative thoughts with the dreams and goals that you have envisioned for yourself. Through time and persistence, you will transform your goals into reality.

Gracious Time to Reflect

You’ve mastered maintaining a healthy mindset, you’ve mastered taking action, and now you must take time to reflect. 

Once you’ve spent time taking action, pause and reflect on the results. It is important to have time planned for reflection. Your time in reflection will allow you to look back and see your progress. This time helps you evaluate if what you are doing is truly bringing about the change you desire.

A good practice to help you reflect is journaling. Journaling is a great way to articulate what can sometimes be jumbled thoughts. Begin your journaling time writing about the change you desire. Then talk about the steps you have taken towards this change. Lastly, spend time writing about how far you’ve come. You will be surprised at what you have already accomplished; seeing it on paper makes it even more real.

As you write about how far you’ve come, celebrate! Making changes is sometimes difficult but it is incredibly exciting too. When you look back and see how far you’ve come, take time to celebrate your accomplishments. You are a great person who has put in some hard work to help your beautiful self thrive. 

I am here to be of service to you in helping you accomplish your goals. Please take time to drop me an email to let me know if the topic was helpful to you. Until then Peace, Happiness and Love.

Inner Wisdom... The Hidden Key to Success

You have gifts and talents inside you. Everyone does. And each person's gifts and talents are different. That's what makes this world such a beautifully diverse place - I have strengths and gifts you don't have, and you have strengths and gifts I don't have.

There are some gifts that we all share, that give all human beings something in common with one another. One of these gifts is inner wisdom.

Outside Wisdom

Outside wisdom comes from others. It's the wisdom of a grandmother as she shares every life lesson she's learned from her many decades of living. It's the wisdom from an experienced teacher, pastor, or coach who shares what they've learned and gives advice.

Learning from the wisdom of others is valuable and vital. They say that experience is the best teacher. But what's even better is learning from someone else's experience, so that you don't have to suffer through the same challenge.

Inner Wisdom

Everyone should learn from the wisdom and experience of others. But you also have wisdom inside of you.

If you truly want to succeed in life, if you want to unlock your potential and achieve your dreams, you must at some point start relying on your own wisdom. Often wisdom requires the assistance and support of someone experienced at helping you discover the best you.

Other people can't succeed for you. Other people can't chase your dream for you. Other people can't heal from your hurts for you. Everyone needs someone to listen and reflect back to them what they have said. After hearing your own words and thoughts out loud, it helps you to map out a course of action that supports your growth and success.

Developing Your Inner Wisdom

You don't have to go it alone, though - far from it. That's why I'm here - I want to share my wisdom with you and help you to uncover the wisdom inside of you.

If you've suffered loss, abuse, or made so many bad choices in life and you're wondering how you could ever have any inner wisdom - then don't despair. It's through the wisdom of others that we learn to develop our own wisdom.

That's why life coaching can be so effective. It's someone else sharing their wisdom, their experience, the life skills, and mental disciplines they've learned. Personalized coaching gives you an opportunity to listen, learn, ask questions, and begin learning how to recover, succeed, and make wise choices.

As you learn to evaluate your life experiences, learn from them, and turn them into wisdom, you can move towards success. Success is whatever you want it to be for you: breaking an addiction, raising healthy children, starting a business, or whatever you dream of doing.

You do have the potential inside you for wisdom - everyone does. Therapy, self-help books, and life coaching are some of the ways to unlock this wisdom within. If you'd like to learn more about developing your inner wisdom and moving forward with your life, contact me today!