Why This Indie Business Can’t (And Won’t) Touch Black Friday – pt. 1

I read an article Sunday morning at Business Insider entitled “Things Most Black Friday Shoppers Don’t Know.”  You can read it here.  Even for a seasoned retail employee who’s seen her share of Black Fridays, the wife of a retail worker who had to get up early after Thanksgiving at the beach so her husband could get to work on Black Friday, and an indie manufacturer and business owner, there was some new and interesting – but common sense – facts here.

In this two-part series, we’re going to look at the realities of retail and how my indie business is different – and better.

  1. BI:  “The mall doesn’t open before the anchor stores do.”  Those big stores – Macy’s, Belk’s, and Dillard’s – determine what time the mall opens, and there are huge fines for not being open when they open.  (Some stores bite that fine, and some malls allow retailers to choose for themselves.)

CCS: On Black Friday, all that weekend, and Cyber Monday, we’re here for you.  We may have limitations on our availability (e.g., Sunday morning during church and most times when we’re driving), but for the most part, we’ll be free to answer questions for you.  You don’t have to fight screamin’ hordes of shoppers to get to us.

2.  BI: “Black Friday sales are usually on older models and are often the same deal as last year.”

CCS:  Our prices are our prices all year and our merchandise is made in small batches to ensure freshness.  Small, indie retailers can’t compete with discounted stuff made in overseas sweatshops, so we aren’t going to try.  Our products are worth the price, and when’s the last time you saw a sweat shop slave do a happy dance because you bought that TV?

3.  BI: “These products would probably have gone on sale, anyway.”

CCS:  We save our clearance sale prices for our annual clearance sale.

4.  BI:  “You rarely ever need to be there when the stores open – the sales last all day.”  The reason for getting there uber-early is to ensure you get your preferred sizes.

CCS:  One soap fits all sizes, and our sales also will last throughout the weekend.  We’re not so big into early bird promos.

5.  BI:  “In fact, most (sales) start before Black Friday.”

CCS:  We will be running a special free shipping promotion, but it won’t begin until Black Friday.  It will last all weekend, though, and on into Cyber Monday.

6.  BI: “Stores will use all sorts of tricks to get you to spend more.”  I saw this the last time I worked mall retail.

CCS:  No tricks, though we will suggest add-ons to your purchases, especially for gifts.  The reason is simple:  When I’m selling in person, my wares are spread out before you, and you can see what goes with what (like Orange Blossom soap and Orange Blossom & Amber Creme, or Christmas Candy Soaps with our Christmas Candies Lip Balms).  You don’t have that online, so we will help point you to those complementary items.

Come back tomorrow as we look at the other half of this list.  Do any of these retail tricks surprise you?  Are there others you’d add from your own experiences?

The Death Throes of Black Friday

Black Friday as we know it is beginning to die.  With retailers pushing sales and specials earlier in November, it is looking like the event of Black Friday is losing its significance as a holiday shopping day.  When Cyber Monday came on the scene several years ago, buyers discovered they could wait a few days, avoid the crowds, and still get great specials, all ordered from their desk at work.

Black Friday is so named because it is the official start of the holiday shopping season.  As crowds surged, retailers’ profits for the year went from the red to the black, ensuring that they would end the year on a high note.  To entice shoppers to go to their store over other stores, the retailers then began to offer insane specials and deals – a percentage off.  Then a larger percentage off.  Then a large percentage off and doorbuster deals.  People would literally end up hospitalized or dead trying to beat someone else to this amazing deals.

That money you saved on the 64″ flat-screen TV will go towards your hospital bills.

And when all this simply wasn’t enough for the corporate greed, retailers then began opening earlier and earlier on Black Friday, eventually going so far as to opening doors on Thanksgiving afternoon, desperate for shoppers and little caring that their employees just might want to spend that day with their families before the craziness that is working retail during the holidays begins.

We have seen major retailers shuttering their doors this year.  Sears and Toys R Us both come to mind, and these stores closed for specific reasons.  I know a couple of ladies from church who have a tradition of staying up late and shopping early, and one of the stores they’d hit in their dark-of-night mania was Toys R Us.  Their kids are tweens and teens now, but shopping will take on a very different look for those shoppers for whom TRU was a staple.

Over the course of the past week, I have seen Black Friday deals advertised on Amazon, Facebook, and Google.  I’ve seen such retailers as The Disney Store promoting the opportunity to take advantage of Black Friday specials this week.  You don’t even have to wait for the actual day of Black Friday anymore.  A few clicks and you’re done.  No crowds, no battling for parking at a bustling mall, no getting dressed in three layers of clothes to endure the chilling cold that typically is Black Friday morning while you wait for stores to open.

When stores discount their prices for Black Friday, something happens the week before:  They raise their prices.  A recent article at Business Insider states that retailers will increases prices from 8-23% in the days and weeks prior to Black Friday so they still will get their same profit margins.  I’ll be spending time in an upcoming blog post discussing that some more.

As this Friday comes up, what’s your plan of attack?  Will you be hitting the shops or clicking “buy now”?  Have you finished shopping?  Or do you shop artisans throughout the year?

Keeping The Healthy Coastal Lifestyle a Life Style

As a way to promote my business and practice my writing, particularly with constraints, I have been responding to HARO (Help a Reporter Out) queries.  Three times every weekday, I receive lists of topics from reporters who are looking for source feedback for their articles.  Categories include business/finance, health & medicine, lifestyle, entertainment, travel, and so forth.  Interested persons reply to the queries and, if accepted, their responses are included in the article, either digital or print, with mentions of their business.  I got my first mention in a blog post that came out yesterday.  You can read that article here.

This morning I responded to a query from a reporter looking for success tips from people who have lost 20+ pounds and kept it off.  I thought I’d share with you what I shared with that reporter.  I’m not including the “common sense” stuff about cutting sugary drinks for water and exercising every day.

My tips for healthy lifestyle success:

(1) Just do it, anyway.  When I don’t want to go out for that walk, I grab the sneakers and walk anyway.  When I don’t really feel like going to aerobics, I grit my teeth and do it, anyway.  I find a “commitment” activity.  Though it was humid out this summer, once I grabbed a pair of socks, I mentally committed to walking.  (I keep a pile of clean, paired socks beside my bed, so I can just reach down and grab a pair.  Boom!  Commitment before I get out of bed.)

(2) Ignore weight.  The scale just tells us about our relationship with gravity.  When you’re improving your health through changing food choices and adding exercises, it’s common not just to lose fat but also to build muscle.  A pound of muscle weighs as much as a pound of fat (so no weight change between losing that fat and building that muscle), but a pound of muscle is denser and has significantly less volume than a pound of fat.  Your weight may stay the same while your body shape is noticeably changing.

(3) Record everything you eat.  With the holidays coming up, this is tedious – heavy family dinners, parties, socials, etc.  This helps you see patterns in your eating and helps you make adjustments to make sure you’re getting enough carbohydrates, fats, and proteins without consistently overdoing any one of these.  I use an app in my phone to keep up with this.

(4) Move.  Grab extra steps whenever and however you can.  Some days require long periods of sitting, but break them up by walking and stretching.

(5) Be gracious with yourself.  You’re not going to exercise when you’re sick.  That’s OK.  There’s no walking outside when it’s 30 degrees.  Ate 2400 calories on that day of the office Christmas party followed by your spouse surprising you with dinner out?  It’s one day. You haven’t failed as long as you get right back to it as soon as you reasonably can.

(6) Eat the dessert.  In other words, don’t do a deprivation diet.  Eating a little bit of that “bad food” will stave off cravings for it and the potential for bingeing on it.  Denying yourself carbs or fats or whatever to lose weight just makes you want those foods that much more after you meet your weight-loss goal.  I have seen, time after time, people regaining unhealthy amounts of weight after following low-carb diets or diets where the foods/meals are provided for them.  Just be sure to record the food in your food journal and possibly add some extra exercise to the week.

I had already cut out sugary drinks (tea and sodas) in favor of water, so that isn’t something new to me.  I also don’t drink many alcoholic drinks (max 2-3 a year) or fancy coffee drinks, all of which pack on a lot of empty calories.  I am still losing weight, but this lifestyle change has become a part of me.  Simply put, the side benefits make me feel good, so I’m more inclined to keep with it.

Once you make a healthy lifestyle yours, it goes beyond such mundane things as dieting for weight loss and trying to bulk up.  With a slow and steady progress, the healthy lifestyle becomes just that – a life style.  Or, a better way to look at it is, a style of living for the rest of your life.  It’s a style of living that includes healthy, balanced eating; regular exercise; and overall choices that lead to a longer, happier, healthier, more active life.

Healthy Coastal Lifestyle – Year 2

It’s the end of my second year of living the healthy coastal lifestyle, and I’ve met all but one of my goals.  I had a weight goal that I’m still striving towards, but considering it wasn’t my primary goal, that’s OK.

In the last year, I’ve added high/low impact aerobics and yoga to my previous routine.  I’ve hit plateaus (OMGosh, how annoying are those!?) and reduced my daily calorie intake a bit more each time.  I learned that I have anxiety and have added routines (not just yoga) to my life to help reduce that.  In May I had a complete physical, including full blood panel, which gave me some additional insights in how well I was doing in taking care of my body.  In short, it’s been a very health-ful year.

In year one of my HCLS, I went on a mission trip and the knee I’d rehabbed the previous year did great.  This past spring, I went back to Washington, DC and put even more steps on my pedometer, and it was as if my knees had never hurt at all.  A couple of weeks after that trip, I wore the black velvet choker to our anniversary dinner I’d striven to wear again.

Hubby + me. I’m wearing the choker in this pic.

I’ve noticed some incredible changes in my body over the past two years!

  1. I’ve lost over half my targeted weight.  This isn’t a gross loss; while I’ve burned fat I’ve also built muscle.  It’s frankly disgusting to think about the mass of fat cells I’ve lost – we’re talking the weight equivalent of 3 gallons of milk!  And those fat cells took up a lot of space (fat has a great deal of volume).  I’ve replaced some of those pounds with muscle, which has less volume.  Think of the difference between a pound of feathers and a one-pound brick; they weigh the same, but the feathers take up considerably more space than the brick.
  2. I have greatly reduced my reliance on NSAID pain-relievers.  With the advent of yoga in my life came increased calm, increased mindfulness, increased flexibility, and decreased pain.  Before starting yoga, I would have to take two tablets before aerobics to prevent pain (hopefully) and three more at bedtime to help control pain and swelling overnight.  I haven’t had to take NSAIDs at all, either prior to or following my high/low impact aerobics classes.
  3. I enjoy greater strength.  While I still do and enjoy weight training and toning, yoga builds strength in different ways.  To the casual observer, it seems wimpy – holding poses, balancing, etc.  However, to the yogi, yoga requires a great deal of strength.  Core strength (the power in the back, sides, and abdominals) is essential to the balancing poses of yoga.  Arm and upper body strength are necessary for poses such as downward facing dog, tabletop, and plank.
  4. My clothes (very annoyingly) don’t fit well anymore.  They’re loose and I’ve had to start wearing belts to prevent public embarrassment.  While I’ve replaced some of my too-big clothes, it seems pointless to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe when I’ll have to buy still more clothes after I hit my goal.
  5. Can we talk stamina?  I have more energy than I used to.  Part of it is from losing the weight, but another part is from building up my cardiovascular health.  I’ve walked at stiff paces for 3.1 miles and barely felt it.  Yet, my heart was beating at a robust, fat-burning 150+ bpm.  That stamina and energy have also translated into other parts of my life.  I’m more active during the days, no matter what’s going on.

What healthy steps have you taken to meet your fitness and health goals?  Drop a comment below and share what goals you’ve met so we can celebrate with you.

The Bone Broth

Two weeks ago, a major hurricane bore down on our coast before deciding that the area is quite lovely and she wanted to spend a couple of days just hanging out. A full day of devastating winds followed by two days of catastrophic flooding were her gifts to us before she moved on to torment towns, cities, and communities inland.

My teen and I returned from the beach and started preparing for the storm with an eye toward the possibility of having to evacuate. I had decided to pull some turkey carcasses out of the freezer to make bone broth to can, thinking, if nothing else, we’d have some broth with which to make soups (on the grill) or to add flavor to beans and rice (cooked on the grill).

For those of you who don’t know, bone broth is a fantastic base for soups and gravies, and, better still, the collagen that steeps out of the bones is great for gut health. (My husband will be having outpatient surgery in the coming months, so any leftovers would be good for him.) I make my broth with the bones of the previous year’s turkey and use it to make the next year’s gravy. It makes a LOT of gravy, so I had a bit leftover in the freezer. With the power outages, though, there’s a chance it would no longer be good, so I’ll toss it when we get home.

Early in the week, I made and canned seven pints of bone broth and had two quarts leftover to freeze. As midweek approached, we’d decided to ride out the storm, so I’d started another batch, pushing to get it made and canned while we still had power. Unfortunately, an evacuation notice curtailed that brilliant plan, so I poured everything from the slow cooker into a huge container, wrapped it in four grocery bags, and carried it with me to my parents-in-law’s house where we have been since we left.

I finished the broth our fourth night evacuated. As I was ladling the fresh, hot, fragrant broth into my container, I had a few thoughts go through my head. One, I simply had to admire my broth. It’s beautiful, all golden healthfulness. Two, I need to skim the fat off of it, freeze both the fat (for the gravy) and the broth, and can it when I get home. Three, it’s a good time for starting fresh and new.

Turkey bone broth

Through the disaster and the not knowing, we are finding the happy things. We are grateful for all we have as we get through this time. We are taking advantage of opportunities that this location affords us. We are thankful that we homeschool and can take our studies with us, as well as find awesome-cool field trips and things to explore that we don’t have at home.

We have no idea what our home looks like now or what it will look like when we return. One this is for certain, though: We will have to clean out our refrigerator and freezers (maybe the freezers, depending on how long power was out). This means starting with a fresh, clean space. We will have to air out a home that will have sat in heat and humidity with no central air for over a week. We will want to launder bedding and change sheets – all sorts of things to freshen up our home.

The seven pints of bone broth I canned and the ten or so more I will be canning will be new and fresh for us, too. They will see us through cold and flu season, dinners, and pre-procedure clear liquid diets. A quart will give itself to our amazing gravy for Thanksgiving dinner. They will be the start of something wonderful as we take this opportunity for fresh newness.

I Messed Up, Y’all

Screen shot
My activity tracker for last week

You see it there, folks.  My daily goal to hit 30 minutes of activity a day tanked last week.  There’s no excuse.  The weather was decent, I made it to yoga two days, and I wasn’t that sick.  (My teen brought a cold virus home from a rafting trip and, well, sharing is caring.)

If I were dieting with a goal of nothing but weight loss, I’d have gotten discouraged. I was feeling soft around the middle, slack, and unhealthy. When you’re dieting and exercising just to lose weight, it’s so easy to think, “I’m a failure” when you fall out of your fitness routine. Were this my mindset, I’d have shrugged in resignation and taken the attitude of just quitting, because I’d already fallen so far off the wagon.

I’m not dieting to lose weight, though, so this is where having the goal of cultivating a healthy lifestyle comes in and makes a significant difference. I had already planned to go through a toning/training circuit Sunday afternoon. Sunday morning while chatting with my friend and aerobics instructor, she encouraged me on all the weight I’d lost. That little bit gave me the extra boost I needed to get back on track.

Just because I got off track last week doesn’t mean I have to stay off track this week. That goes for all of our goals, though, doesn’t it? Whether we’re working toward work goals, fitness goals, relationship goals, or home goals, the truth is, we’re not going to succeed every week. Mess happens, life happens. We cannot, however, take that one week of failure over against many weeks of rousing success and allow that one to undo all the rest of our hard work.

I jumped on that attitude. Training/toning Sunday, rest Monday, 2.5 mile walk and yoga on Tuesday, more toning yesterday, and today a walk on the beach. I feel better and more successful already.

What goal are you striving toward that you could use a little (or a lot) of encouragement on? I invite you to drop it in the comments below.

Embrace Your Mantra

Last night was my yoga night.  My younger daughter had asked me to skip yoga Tuesday night since we were celebrating her birthday, so I was really in need of last night’s stretching and strengthening.  The yoga master invited us to think of a mantra, not something I’d come across in practice before.  While the suggested mantras were self-affirming – “I am strong,”  “I am powerful,” and so forth – I found myself thanking God for making me strong.  Eventually, as the practice wore on, I thanked God that I am “wonderfully made.”

It doesn’t sound like I’m owning the hard work I’ve been doing on my body or affirming myself for who I am.  But I know myself.  If I were to say, “I’m so strong,” a part of my mind would ask, “But why aren’t you stronger?”  If I gave myself strokes for my increasing flexibility, inevitably I’d also come down hard on myself in that practice where my body is stiff and my mind is struggling to center itself in my flow.

I don’t often talk about my faith in my business content.  Not all my customers share my faith, and I don’t want to put walls up between them and me.  Last night was significant, though.  As I was in pigeon pose, I thanked God for making me strong and for making me so wonderfully.  You see, if God made me to be strong and knit me together wonderfully, then I must be put together pretty awesomely.  That means I can take satisfaction and find contentment in how I am, even with that patellar ligament that could be looser and that pose I don’t quite have the flexibility to pull off.  It means I can give myself the very necessary grace to carry that little roll around my middle and to still be working towards the stretching and flexibility I desire to have.

Yoga pigeon pose
Pigeon pose

So, my mantra for last night’s practice was, “Thank you, God, for making me wonderfully.”  That acknowledges that I am, in fact, put together well, that God made me to bend, stretch, and flex as I need to for yoga.  But it also liberates me from any potential negative or ungracious self-talk.  If God made me, then I must be made pretty well.  However, I need to honor my createdness by taking care of the creation.  I do this by following my healthy coastal lifestyle.

Then
yesterday afternoon…  Yet another powerful reminder of how
well we’re made and how much we really need to take care of our
bodies.  On the recommendation of a friend, I watched this
documentary on Netflix that shows exactly what sort of damage obesity
does to the human body.  I’m not going to go into all the
details, but let’s just say, it wasn’t pretty (or for the weak of
stomach).  All the organs in the human body are crafted to fit
together in blocks, like they’re part of a 3D puzzle.  Obesity
severely compromises how they rest in the body and how those
individual organs perform.  We think of obesity simply as being
fat and possibly we recognize that it can lead to type 2 diabetes and
stroke.  It can also lead to severe organ failure, any one of
which is fatal.

Then
how cool was it to hear the verse in Psalms during one of
yesterday’s readings that reminds us, “I am fearfully and
wonderfully made” (some versions say, “complexly”). 
That tells me I need to pay significant attention to that verse, to
sit with it for a bit, to remember that I am marvelously made, but
that I also must respect my body by taking care of it. 

Time for your part.  Why not set a mantra for the week?  Make it affirming; you certainly deserve it.  Care to share?  Drop yours in the comments below.

Double Your Happiness with Manic Mint Soap

Owning a bottle of spearmint essential had long been a dream of mine.  When I could afford it, either I didn’t think about it or my suppliers didn’t have it.  When I couldn’t justify the expense…  Well, there ya go.  Finally, last month things aligned so that I could barely justify it when it was time to restock lavender oil, so I went ahead and splurged.

The bottles of oil came and… Ohhhhhhh!!!  One whiff of the spearmint oil and I was blasted away in a zippedy-doo-dah moment of euphoria.  The scent was pure, crisp mint that brings to mind amazing chewing gum and carried memories of my grandma’s out-of-control mint bed that wasted little time racing from its spot near their pool in the back up to the driveway.  Suffice it to say, I was blissed out!

I’d been yearning for this spearmint oil for one simple reason:  To make a spearmint-peppermint swirled soap.  But how to design it?  Then my Facebook memories reminded me of this stunning black and white mantra swirl I’d done ages ago and I thought, Why not?  It’d been years since I’d done that particular design last, and it wasn’t particularly hard to do.

This is that swirl coming to be.


Sure, this soap is fabulous from the top side, but what about the slices?  Unfortunately, you have to wait to see that as the soap is still a bit soft to unmould.  The best places to check it out are my Facebook page and my Instagram feed; I’ll be showing off the slices around Friday of this week.  It’s just two days away!

I hope you enjoyed this behind-the-scenes view of a swirl coming together.  These beauties will be ready to add some zippedy to your doo-dah in less than 4 weeks.  Be sure we’re landing in your inbox because email subscribers get first dibs on all new products.  I just received a new fragrance today to try, so that’ll be one of my next soaps to show off to you.

How To Enjoy Our Beaches Properly

*Note: For the sake of this article, “beach camp site” refers to a person’s or group’s spot on the beach. This might be towels and a beach bag, or it may be a 10×10 canopy, wet bar, lounge chairs, DJ, and separate play area for the kiddies.

Part of my brand is all about enjoying our gorgeous North Carolina beaches, and they are here for all people to enjoy, both tourists and locals.  As the girls and I were spending a day at the beach today, I thought of how our beaches’ visitors, both local and touring, could make beach-going better for everyone.

A 30- second beach break

(1) Do not play music loudly on the beach.  The beach has the best sounds:  Crashing waves, cawing seagulls, and happily squealing children.  Many of us go to the beach specifically to enjoy these sounds.  Your loud music drowns those sounds out.  You don’t actually have the right to play your music loudly enough to be disruptive to others.  Sure, listen to your music; that’s what earbuds are for.  Otherwise, if you wish to look at water while you blast music and get drunk, please do us a favor and do this in your bathtub or backyard pool.  There was a group with a serious “let’s party” speaker on the beach today.  I ended up moving our beach camp far down the beach until I couldn’t hear their music anymore.  Never have I wanted to scatter bread crumbs around someone as much as I wanted to today.  This brings me to my next point.

(2) Do not feed the seagulls (aka, beach rats).  You may be thinking, Awww, how cute to see little Billy offering his fries to the seagulls!  It’s so cool watching them flying around!  It may be like you’re in a fun summer movie, but it’s not so fun for those of us around you.  Do you know that stuff goes into seagulls, and stuff also comes out of them?  Those in the 20-foot radius around you really don’t wish to get pooped on while you’re feeding the birds.

(3) Only smoke in designated smoking areas.  Have you smelled the beach lately?  It smells of wet salty air, ozone, and a glorious blend that can only be half a dozen different sunscreens.  You may enjoy the pungent aroma of your nasty smelling imported cigarettes or cigars, but the rest of us?  Not so much.  And while we’re at it, please keep your butts off our beaches – your cigarette butts, that is.

(4) Do not litter.  Do you love ocean life?  Maybe you are big on ocean life because you’re a die-hard conservationist.  That’s great!  My younger daughter is, too.  Maybe, you want to protect ocean life because – let’s face it – shrimp and fish make for good eatin’.  Litter on the beaches eventually makes its way to the ocean where it harms and kills ocean life.  No butts, no bottles, no cans, no plastic bags.  Every beach access has trash cans available, and some also have recycling cans, too.

This simply comes down to, love our beaches and be considerate of others at the same time.  There are a lot of little beach etiquette rules; I grew up with them, and they’re pretty common-sense things.  Things like, don’t shake your towel out where the sand will blow on other people.  Don’t run by people, kicking sand up on them.  Watch out when you’re boogie boarding so as not to run into people in the shallows (sometimes unavoidable).

We want everyone to enjoy our fabulous beaches.  It would really suck if someone came to one of our beaches, had a horrible time because of inconsiderate beach-goers, and forever after vacationed in Virginia, South Carolina, or Florida.  It’s real, folks.  People judge beaches by the type of people that plant themselves on them.  My parents will never again vacation at this one particular beach because of people that were there one time.  I myself avoid a certain beach for a similar reason (that, and the beach is narrow and crowded).

What makes or breaks a beach experience for you?  Drop your comments below.

Setting Intentions

If you’ve been following me on social media and through my blog and newsletter, you know I’ve recently started doing yoga.  I go to a class once a week and do some exercises on my own throughout the week.  At the beginning of each class, Beth, our instructor, tells us to “set your intention for this time.”  My intention is rarely the same week to week.  This week, I may want to stretch out.  The next week I might be focusing on building strength.  Two weeks ago, mindfulness may have been my goal.  Those are really three very different foci, and it’s pretty impossible to set an intention for more than one at a time.  Sure, I can do the flow with mindfulness as my goal and still build strength and stretch out, but I can only concentrate on one intention at a time.

Yoga poses
Doing yoga has helped me learn how to set intentions for each day.

The same happens in business.  My intention for my business is to serve my customers the best I can.  Another day, my intention might be more growth-oriented.  These don’t happen in isolation from each other or any other focus I might have for my business on any given day.

I am using the lesson from yoga to impact my business.  Each day, I’m going to start out by stating an intention for that business day.  Today’s intention was transitional.  Transitional days see me moving from the last major task to the next one.  I finished clearing out the remnants of the lip balm order I sent last week and prepared to restock some soap.  This transitional day was also a day of preparation:  When my new printer crosses the threshold tomorrow, I will be ready with stacks of labels to print off.

By stating an intention for my days, I am doing more than setting a goal.  I am declaring what I will achieve that day.  Doing this today has energized my day.  I have felt super-charged to make things happen, but only if they work towards my intention.  Wrapping soaps that need to be wrapped is not part of today’s intention, so they will only get done after everything else is complete.  They are, however, a huge part of tomorrow’s intention.

Do you set intentions or goals for each day?  I encourage you to set an intention for each day, and let me know how that changes how you’re able to do life or work in the comments below.