Hopefully you spread the love all during the month of February and participated in The Plunge!
If you are new to The Plunge, it is a monthly challenge that challengers you to push the walls of your box, venture into something new, and show exceptional kindness to the world around you. This month, the month of March, is going to be all about messages!
Everywhere we go, everything we do, we leave a footprint – we leave a message. Whether we like it or not, people are affected by what we say and do. So all during the month of March, we are going to concentrate on the messages we send, as well as purposefully sending positive messages to those around us.
Just in the last couple weeks, I have been thinking a lot about messages. So, I decided to start a podcast called “The Drive to School.” The purpose of this podcast is to give my students (and anyone else who is interested) a motivational moment to listen to on the drive to school, work, or anywhere else they might be going! But the purpose is clear – send a positive message.
Not only do we send messages everywhere we go, we also receive messages. And it is up to us whether or not we take them in and make them part of us. So, while you concentrate on the messages you’re sending, this month I challenge you to also think about the messages you’re taking in. What are you seeing, hearing, tasting, touching – and how is it affecting you as a human being?
The messages don’t just come from the world around you. They come from YOU. What kind of self-talk are you promoting? Are you consistently telling yourself that you are worthless? Not enough? Not tall enough, skinny enough, smart enough, pretty enough, handsome enough? Those self-deprecating messages can be destructive to you and those around you.
The messages we send, receive, take in, give away – they are all super important. So during the month of March, our Plunge Tribe is going to be focusing on messages – and how we can make our worlds a better place by promoting positivity in our messages.
So, with all that being said, let’s roll out this month’s Plunge.
Leave messages of hope in random places.
In the Plunge Prep Pack I’m giving away this month (winner at the end of this post!) there were post-it notes, chalk, masking tape, window markers, and hearts. All of these items are there to be used to leave messages of hope and positivity. The whole month, keep these supplies with you in your purse, car, briefcase, bag – but have something nearby to leave messages for people. Here are some ideas:
- Leave post-its on bathroom mirrors and work cubicles, desks or lunch boxes – anywhere. Include a positive quote (get some here) and brighten someone’s day with a message of hope.
- Use sidewalk chalk to write on someone’s driveway (if it isn’t covered in snow) or on a parking lot spot. Write a message of hope – maybe just something as simple as “Have a nice day.”
- Buy clearance Valentine’s window stickers and write sweet messages for someone you know – a friend or neighbor – and leave messages on their car window.
- Use window markers and write messages on car, home, or work windows.
- Use masking tape to write positive messages and stick them directly on people (this is brave) – compliments about them. You can also stick them on their computers or chairs or desks at work.
Cut out ALL negative self-talk
This month a big PLUNGE is to get all of the negative self-talk out of your vocabulary and start speaking more positively to yourself. That means waking up everyday and either talking to yourself (I love doing this) or reading something about yourself that is positive. Use the same tools (post-its, window markers, chalk, masking tape) to leave messages for YOURSELF that are personal and cater to your own insecurities. This is the month to lift yourself up.
February and March can often be difficult doldrum months, especially for those of us who live in climates where the sun isn’t always shining. So, don’t just leave messages for other people, leave messages for yourself.
Cut out the parts of your life that bring in negativity
This is a tough one and it takes a little more thought. First, you need to think about what kinds of messages you are allowing into your life. Take a self-inventory:
- What shows do I watch? Are they promoting positivity? Do I feel uplifted?
- What music do I listen to? Does it cause me to feel better or worse about myself? What kinds of messages do the lyrics send?
- What am I reading? Am I putting positive content in my brain? Is it making me better, stronger, more resilient? Or does it make me complain and be negative?
- How do I spend my time on the internet? Do I read things that make me a better person? Do I promote positivity and find positivity?
- Who are the people I spend my time with? Do they make me better or worse?
After taking a self-inventory, it can reveal quite a bit about the messages we are allowing into our lives. It can also reveal why we feel the way we do about ourselves. Surrounding ourselves with positivity will definitely help the messages we send both to ourselves and to the world around us.
Here are some great ways to fill your soul with positivity:
- Check out some of my favorite, uplifting blogs: The Art of Simple, A Holy Experience, Jen Hatmaker, Jennie Allen, and (in)courage. Allow them to fill your heart with positive messages.
- Check out TED, a great website full of talks by the world’s most brilliant people. Learn something new, gain new knowledge and insight about the world. Do something positive with that information.
- Start a new journal and chronicle all the blessings in your life.
- Read one of these incredible books: One Thousand Gifts, Notes from a Blue Bike, Restless, or Crazy Love. All these books will cause you to GROW as a person instead of sludging around in stanky stagnant water.
- Be like Gretchen Rubin, and create a Happiness one sentence journal, writing one positive sentence about each day. Keep track of it and read your sentences at the end of each week.
Whatever you do, make this month your new start to practice the art of positive thinking. Send out positive messages, take in positive messages, and then begin the process of changing your negative thinking to positive. It will change your day, your week, your month, and start a new habit that could completely change your life!
I write often about my daily practice of repeating my two mantras:
- Today is the best day ever. Because if today were my last day, I would want it to be my best day, so I’m going to make today the best day ever.
- Choose joy.
The practice of repeating these two mantras has made a drastic difference in my life. My whole outlook has changed. I pray that this month you will see the drab March skies burst open with the beauty of sunshine as you purposefully make changes to intentionally spread the message of positivity.
WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!!!!
The Plunge Prep Pack winner is firstname.lastname@example.org!
Please leave a comment below this blog post to claim your prize and I will get it to you immediately!!! Everyone – look for more Plunge Prep Pack giveaways in the future! Make sure you sign up to be my e-mail friend (just click here) so you can be entered in future drawings!
Last but certainly not least, I spoke at our church Women’s Retreat this weekend, and boy did we have an amazing time together. This coming week (March 2-6) I will be posting daily, uplifting devotionals on my blog. Be sure to check back (or sign up to get e-mail deliveries) for more positive messages during the next week.
Always Choosing Joy,