Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Gratitude: The Way to True Joy

You have probably heard that one of the best ways to improve your outlook and experience life satisfaction is to count your blessings. We would probably all agree, and most of us are thankful. However, we quickly begin to take things for granted or we simply do not think about being thankful throughout our day. A great way to keep our focus on what we have, the good, the beautiful, the positivie side of things is to keep a Gratitude Journal. I got away from doing this for some time, and a couple of months ago I decided to get back to it. Every night before bed, I think about my day and write down at least three things that I am thankful for. It amazes me that I do not think about being thankful for the simple things at the time they are happening or I quickly forget about them; but when I take time to reflect, I am truly grateful. For example, I found a home remedy for my cat's eye infection that worked. And once after running errands all day, I just made it to the last store ten minutes before they closed.

When I first began my journal, I recorded three things I was grateful for each day. Now I sometimes have a list of seven or more. Another thing that is interesting is that reflecting on the day sometimes reminds me of some unpleasant or frustrating things. Even when thinking about them, I seem to always find at least something I can be thankful for. In doing this, I am practicing gratitude. I am focusing on the positive instead of the negative. There was a time when I spent a great deal of energy focusing on what what wrong instead of what was right, what I did not have rather than what I did have, and what I could not do instead of what I could do. It comes down to perspective. If we think about what we are grateful for, we will spend much more time thinking about the good in our lives. That is one of the best ways to practice happiness. I encourage you to start a Gratitude Journal. It is simple and with practice you can expect to have a happier attitude and outlook.

For more on Gratitude, go to You will find some more exercises and encouragement to practice gratitude and develop a thankful heart.

One of my favorite sections is on Perspective. Check it out here:

My gratitude for my son is best expressed in this video. I wrote the words shortly after he was born. I originally wrote it with his name in the title. This version is altered so everyone can relate and appreciate it.

With a heart of gratitude, Krystal

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Keys to Success

There are many formulas and ideas about success, and I have found some of them to be helpful. However, I have learned 3 keys to success and contentment that never fail, and I would like to share them with you. They are simple, yet reflective.

I believe real success is not always about achieving or doing more, but it also is in learning to be content. How do we learn to be content? We learn by increasing in intellectual knowledge, and we also learn by habitual practice. It is important to practice gratitude, love, happiness, or whatever it is we want to have in our lives. That is why we encourage practice at We also provide a great deal of information to help you increase in intellectual knowledge as well. Personally, I love learning. I remember accumulating more and more knowledge, but lagging behind in putting some of it into practice. It is when I began to practice love and happiness with a new perspective, setting my priorities straight, and drawing on God's strength that my life really began to change.

Following are the 3 Keys to Success and Contentment. How we answer them will actually determine our level of success and contentment.

(1) Perspective - How do you see yourself, others, the world? The information at this link will really help you to answer this question:

(2) Priorities - What is most important to you? Great activity to help you identify your priorities:

(3) Source of Power and Strength - Where does your help come from? What gives you strength? How often do you draw on your source of strength and power? This question is actually a very personal one. Take your time to think about it.

I wish you much success! Krystal

Monday, April 14, 2008

Health and Fitness: Caring for Our Bodies

Happiness lies, first of all, in health. ~George William Curtis

Just imagine for a moment what life would be like if each individual on earth were allowed to own just one automobile per lifetime. Do you think you would be more motivated to take better care of your vehicle-getting routine tune-ups and oil changes, rotating tires, keeping it clean, and so forth? Some of us might have a very different attitude about it altogether. We might take our responsibility to care for it more seriously. And we would most likely appreciate and cherish it much more.

Fortunately, most of us are not limited to owning just one vehicle per lifetime so we don't have to be overly concerned with proper maintenance and care. But, how about our bodies? We can't trade them in for another model. And some parts can't be replaced. When something goes wrong we do what we can to fix it. We own it for life. And it's up to us to take proper care of what we have. The truth is, however, many people neglect proper nutrition and diet. They don't exercise consistently. And they don't make relaxation a priority. So their bodies get run down. They become more susceptible to illness. They get tired and end up having to work harder to keep themselves going.

Most would agree that they could do a better job in taking care of themselves. Oftentimes they know what needs to be done. There is a lot we can do to be our best-to look our best and to feel our best. When we take steps to take care of ourselves physically it also affects our mental and emotional well-being. Our body and mind works together. Our energy is increased as we make positive changes in improving our health. And our attitude and self-esteem is improved as we like the changes we see and feel.

So what is it that keeps people from taking better care of their bodies? For one, it is hard work. Making it a disciplined lifestyle takes motivation and commitment. But it can be done if you will take it one day at a time. Following are some tips to help you develop a healthier lifestyle:

* Begin with short-term goals. Be realistic in your expectations. Small changes over time result in big changes in the long run. Be patient and learn to appreciate and celebrate small victories.

* Picture yourself the way you would want to be. If it is a possibility then it's a matter of doing what needs to be done. Start by believing you can do it. Having faith that it can happen is essential. It keeps you going when you want to give up.

* Find an accountability partner. Having someone to whom you can report how you are doing keeps you motivated. This person can help keep you on track and remind you of the progress you're making when you don't see it. A partner who shares your goals and will join you in achieving them can be especially helpful.

* Establish a routine and be consistent. A new habit can take about six weeks to become a part of your lifestyle. If you have a setback, don't give up. Get back on track as soon as possible. Begin again by setting goals, visualizing your success, believing for it and taking action.

Lifestyle changes don't happen overnight. Whether or not you begin today, three months from now will still come. You can be that much closer to your goals. You can be the best you can be if you make it a priority. How important is your body to you? Are you satisfied with how you are caring for it? How could your life be better if you were to make some changes? You have one body for life. What you do with it now will have lasting results.

Copyright © 2007 Krystal Kuehn,
Maximum Potential, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Krystal Kuehn, MA, LPC, LLP, NCC is a psychotherapist, author, teacher & musician. She is the cofounder of New Day Counseling, a marriage family counseling and child therapy center,, an award-winning, self-help and inspirational site where you can find hundreds of free resources, insights & inspiration, and where you can find beautiful baby poems, baby quotes, cute sayingsbaby videos that will touch your heart & increase your joy & gratitude for the children you love & enjoy!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Another Place to Share

As I was thinking about what I would like to share on this blog, I decided that I would make it both personal and professional. I will share articles and different things from my web sites, and I will also share simple thoughts, ideas, and experiences. I hope you enjoy it!