Positive Sentiment Override – Easier to Preach than to Practice

Positive Sentiment Override – Easier to Preach than to Practice

It’s Day 299 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I’m finding that it’s sometimes easier to preach/coach on positive sentiment override than it is to practice it. I was first introduced to this principle when another couple gave my hubby and me the book The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John M. Gottman, PhD, when we embarked on our marriage to each other after very difficult divorces from our ex-spouses. In describing positive sentiment override at work in a marriage Gottman states “This means their positive thoughts about each other and their marriage are so pervasive that they tend to supersede negative feelings. It takes a much more significant conflict for them to lose their equilibrium as a couple than it would otherwise. Their positivity causes them to fell optimistic about each other and their marriage, to assume positive things about their lives together, and to give each other the benefit of the doubt.” (pg.20-21). Heading toward our 12th anniversary as a couple, we’ve both done a fairly good job at adhering to this excellent advice, but to be completely honest, sometimes we fall short. Especially considering we both brought a lot of baggage from those previous relationships into the marriage. Coaching others is easy; putting it into practice myself – not so much.

Angry Couple

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose blogger, I feel like Julie (played by Rachel Adams) in Julie and Julia, the 2009 film about Julie, an aspiring author who starts a blog about cooking her way through every recipe in Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child  (played by Meryl Streep). Julie and her husband have a massive fight and his last words as he leaves their apartment for the night are, “Do NOT blog about this!” She starts to but doesn’t…That movie inspired me to blog and NOT to when I shouldn’t. So I won’t share what has my hubby and I at odds other than it’s a D – or a challenge we Pink Collar Swans face – a disagreement…I will say that he has so many wonderful qualities and that God really did bless the broken road that led us to one another. That being the case, I’ll just request prayers as I try to practice the positive sentiment override that I preach – I mean coach – on with my coaching clients.

How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about using positive sentiment override in your marriage or relationship? How can this principle be applied to other relationships on the home-front or in the workplace?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

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Bringing Shabby Chic Back (Rachel Ashwell as a Romantic Homes Monthly Contributor)

Bringing Shabby Chic Back (Rachel Ashwell as a Romantic Homes Monthly Contributor)

It’s Day 268 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I’m delighted that Romantic Homes Magazine is bringing Shabby Chic back by having Rachel Ashwell as a month contributor! I fell in love with this style of decorating back in the late 90s soon after Rachel Ashwell, its founder, opened her Malibu “shop heard round the world”. At that time, authentic Shabby Chic magazine spreads featuring Rachel’s work (and not all of the knockoffs we see today) graced every bookstore and newsstand. Around Y2K Rachel’s popularity grew to celebrity status and so did her list of clients which included Jennifer Lopez, Pamela Anderson and Jessica Simpson. Any time I needed a Shabby Chic fix, I could pick up a copy of several different magazines and get lost in pages of eye candy and inspiration. Around 2009 this Pink Collar design maven took some unsound business advice that cost her dearly and resulted in bankruptcy. (I know because I researched her for a graduate study project on organizational leadership). Stores dotted across the country and in her native England closed their doors and only her California, New York and London sites remained open. While still able to access the much diminished Simply Shabby Chic offerings at Target and the occasional book or magazine feature, I missed regular doses of this decorating style and its originator. Seeing her name and home on the cover of Romantic Homes today and learning Rachel Ashwell will be a monthly contributor means they’re bringing Shabby Chic back!

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Rachel Ashwell’s Shabby Chic home gracing the cover of Romantic Homes.                                       The magazine sits atop my Simply Shabby Chic luggage stand in my office.  

Fellow bloggers and French Country decorating enthusiasts might appreciate this: Rachel Ashwell isn’t the only one who’s joined the Romantic Homes staff.  Courtney Allison, the incredibly successful blogger behind “French Country Cottage” is the magazine’s new Editor. I must confess, other than Shabby Chic, Courtney’s style is one of the few that has inspired me, not only in decorating but in becoming a blogger. She’s perfected the art and truly made it into a career, maximizing and monetizing every opportunity – something to which many bloggers aspire. You can visit Courtney’s site at www.frenchcountrycottage.net. Though Courtney’s style is different than Rachel’s the Shabby Chic influence is evident in the editor’s French Country decor. The editor stated,  “She will be sharing vintage treasures, design inspirations and much more.” Hopefully “the more” means more Shabby Chic inspired homes featured!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose life long decorating enthusiast with an interior design degree, there was a time when I wanted to do it full time. I landed really good jobs but hated the “selling side” of things. Even so, I never stopped doing freelance work and still offer interior coaching as part of my business. In fact, I’d just done so with a client right before I found the magazine while picking up a birthday card for my son. What I felt when I saw it could probably be described as joy, which reinforces that the decorator in me is alive and well. Now thanks to Romantic Homes bringing Shabby Chic back, my favorite decorating style is too.

What’s your favorite decorating style? How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about exposing yourself to it and expressing in your home and/or office?

Be savvy & chic,

~ Pink Collar Coach

This Sunset Shouts for Joy – Pink Collar Coach’s Confessions of a Beginning Blogger

This Sunset Shouts for Joy – Pink Collar Coach’s Confessions of a Beginning Blogger

It’s Day 264 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I must confess being a beginning blogger has taught me that the sunset shouts for joy. After a wonderful sermon this morning – on making sure we (seeds) are planted in soil that is rich with the right people, places, and things – I taught my faith-based Zumba class, then hunted down a Bargain Priced Book at Barnes and Noble. Elated to have found one by Emilie Richards – an author I discovered at my local grocery store of all places – and that I’d enjoyed an inexpensive linner (my family’s version of brunch; a combo of lunch and dinner) with a BWs Christmas gift card from my hubby, I settled in on my favorite end of the sofa to read. Anticipating the Season 2 finale of “Victoria”, the only thing wrong with my world – not having a blog topic – righted itself when I went to warm up my tea. Our house backs up to woods and the kitchen window provides a picturesque view. Tonight, it framed a stunning sight. Grabbing my phone, I stepped onto the deck just in time to capture the sun as it dipped below the treeline in a perfect haze of pink that made my soul well up with hallelujahs. Not knowing a Scripture that spoke of sunsets, I looked this up: “They who dwell in the ends of the earth stand in awe of Your signs: “You make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy.” – Psalm 65:8.

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Just like the verse says, tonight I stood in awe of this spectacular sign painted across the sky.      As boldly as if written in legible letters or audible sounds it proclaimed, There’s a Master Artist! 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose novice blogger who wants to create artful posts, I must confess, I wish I had a fancy camera and the skill to use it proficiently so I could have fully conveyed the breathtaking beauty of the colors depicted in this sunset’s pallete. But since I don’t possess either, I offer what I do have in the hopes that you readers will be drawn not to the art but to The Artist. I also offer it as a sacrifice of praise to Him for providing me with such a blogworthy picture and Scripture. Not only does the sunset shout with joy; so do I.

Are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about taking time to appreciate God’s art all around you? When is the last time you enjoyed and expressed joy over a sunset?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

 

Playing Around With Poses on President’s Day (True Confessions of A Beginning Blogger)

Playing Around With Poses on President’s Day (True Confessions of A Beginning Blogger)

It’s Day 258 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and my Soul Sister Kibby and I spent some time playing around with poses on President’s Day. Taking advantage of the opportunity to have a day off from working, we planned a needed Girls’ Day to have lunch, watch romantic comedies, and then go to Zumba. Right before we changed for the latter, I wanted to take a pic for tonight’s post and expressed that I needed to change up the way I stand in photos. Kibby styled this one, and other than a bit of belly bulge, I’m pleased with it. Besides, I’m committed to avoiding what I’ve come to think of as the “meme mentality” or basically posting pictures that scream perfection in every aspect of life. So rather than asking for a redo, I’m being transparent and let the bulge (as well  the toys on the floor) be. The resulting shot feels authentic and makes me glad that I spent part of President’s Day playing around with poses.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, trying a new pose in a gray duster, blush top, gray jeggings, & taupe flats.   The floral handbag ties all the colors together and hints at spring.                                                         All Calvin Klein purchased over a number of years from TJ Maxx. 

Not only did the pose show a different side of me, it showcased some pretty Simply Shabby Chic decor, like the fretwork frames holding favorite pictures of my babies at ages two and three and the photo album. The wicker mirror with a shallow basket attached is one of my earliest flea market finds and the wicker basket underneath a table I lugged home by myself from Service Merchandise back in the day is one of two I got from Babies R Us for  my fourteen-year old’s nursery. Though I didn’t plan it, it seems florals was is a theme of the picture, as seen in the handbag, Simply Shabby Chic waste basket, the “Be Kind” wooden sign, the winter hydrangeas, and the Valentine’s Day roses displayed in a large Goodwill Ball mason jar.

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Kibby looks lovely and carries on the floral theme, enhanced with tassels – on her belt, boots, and the earrings she made.

Then, there’s Kibby’s pose. She’s so natural – I want to channel that! I have a lot to learn from her and look forward to having her style me into some fresh poses during our weekend excursions.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose newbie blogger, I must confess that putting myself out here is humbling. My body, hair and face aren’t picture perfect. Neither are my settings. If I focus on all of my “barriers”, the devil (the worst D, or challenge of them all), will have me convinced that I’m not enough and don’t have enough to be doing this. But if I can stay focused on my blessings, my Deliverer (the best D ever!) will keep me convinced that I’m limitless and can do whatever He has planned for me – including more playing around with poses!

How can you be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and play around with new ways of doing things in your personal or professional life, even if it means being transparent and letting your “barriers” show?

Be savvy & chic,

~ Pink Collar Coach

Striking a Casual Pose in Stylish Stripes

Striking a Casual Pose in Stylish Stripes

It’s Day 250 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and it was fun striking a casual pose in stylish stripes. Like most weekends, Saturday was spent leading warm up for Zumba and teaching one, doing lunch with my Soul Sister, Kibby, and with lots of family time. Then, today’s sermon was on-point. It served as a needed reminder that even when we feel we lack the right background, ethnicity, family, education, experience or connections to get where we want to go, God can still catapult us further than we ever imagined. Olympic story after story confirms this and makes me optimistic that He can do it for us. Case in point: For a while, I’ve wanted to monetize my blog (have advertisers pay to run their ads here). Hence the posting of my favorite clothing, home decor, and store brands. Monetizing or not, it’s just plain fun to strike a casual pose, like this one, in braids and stylish stripes!

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, in stylish stripes. The dress is an oldie but goodie, made winter worthy by layering a more recently acquired hoodie, socks, and boots.                                                                Love the gold detail on the hardback, which mirrors the chevron pattern & zipper & earrings.      All Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx and Marshall’s – bought over a decade.
Today, after leading my faith-based Zumba class, I revised a set of discussion questions to accompany my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul. After sharing them for criique at writing group last week, such a thought-provoking conversation ensued that my editor suggested I complete them to be included with the revised edition we are submitting this week. (Due to some formatting issues with the first version…Live and learn, right?). Now there’s this unexpected opportunity to include the readers guide that was omitted in order to make the publication deadline.
Between working on above, reading my long-awaited new novel, The Masterpiece, from contemporary Christian fiction royalty, Francine Rivers, awaiting more Olympics and the tenth episode of Victoria, it’s been such a cool, casual weekend! Made even moreso by spending some of it in stylish stripes.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this short post (they’ll be a little shorter with the Olympics, which is probably a good thing!). And perhaps you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic – be it casual on the home-front or competent in the workplace – striking a pose in stylish stripes!
Be savvy & chic,
~Pink Collar Coach
To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at

 

Snowy Super Bowl Sunday

Snowy Super Bowl Sunday

It’s Day 243 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and it’s been a snowy Super Bowl Sunday. A timely sermon on our mistakes being turned into miracles, teaching my faith-based Zumba class, cuddling up to enjoy a newly discovered (at least for me) author, an honest heart-to-heart with my daughter, and a gathering of our family to watch the Super Bowl on this snowy Sunday made it packed in the best way.

Snowy Day

Though I started the cheerleading squad when I was a middle school teacher and coached up until my son was born, I was a cheerleader who could never follow the game. One of my favorite cheers was, “One, two, three, four! We don’t even know the score!”. Considering that, while my family enjoyed the game in the Man Cave,  I spent much of the evening upstairs with Izzy (I’m Mimi to my oldest stepson’s four-year-old). My daughter had informed me that Justin Timberlake was doing the Half Time Show, so when my hubby called me down to watch, I took advantage of the time to participate with everyone. Since I didn’t even know who was playing, I had no idea the game was being played in Minneapolis, Prince’s hometown. As I watched Justin Timberlake perform, I recalled how Prince’s performance, where he belted out “Purple Rain” as the heavens poured, was arguably the best half time ever. Thinking thus, my heart did a somersault as I saw the image of Prince appear on the screen and watched Justin pay homage to him with a rendition of “I Would Die 4 U”. Diehard fan that I am, that made watching Sunday night football worth it for once!

After half time, I retreated to my room to watch “Victoria”. Now that it’s over, the house is still full, so apparently the game is not. Nevertheless, I need to prepare for the busy week ahead… In checking emails and texts, I found that while I was in Super Bowl mode, someone left a review of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, on Amazon. Then, to my surprise and delight, I found two others when I went to read it. I’m touched that others are responding so well to the main character, Lee, and feel as if they’d like to know her as a friend. Above all else, I wanted her to be relatable; learning that she is is another highlight of my night.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose novice blogger, I must confess that sometimes, I  get stumped on what to write. Then, nights like this remind me that a blog is simply a “web log” or journal, written in an informal, conversational style. That takes the pressure off a bit and frees me to simply write about my day. And it allows me to capture moments – much like Justin Timberlake did when he held up his phone tonight and said, “Super Bowl selfie” as he snapped one. Still, there are times when I wish every post was   insightful or profound. The reality is, some days, posts are just an account of what my day consisted of. Some days, that doesn’t feel like much. But when I lie on the sofa on a snowy Super Bowl Sunday and scroll through the blog and am reminded of fleeting everyday occurrences and things I may have forgotten otherwise, I realize though simple, it’s enough.

How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about chronicling your days or recording them? Do you blog, doodle, journal, take photos, selfies or write? I encourage you to find a way to “set it down” as my Aunt Bertie (Birdy) used to say. Because it does matter and one day you’ll be glad you can look back on it…

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at 
Working on a Book Signing for Seasons of Her Soul!

Working on a Book Signing for Seasons of Her Soul!

It’s Day 240 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I spent some time this evening in one of my favorite places on earth -Barnes and Noble – working on a book signing for Seasons of Her Soul. Some of you readers have asked about this and I’m pleased to let you know it should be a reality soon. I’m also in the process with LifeWay Christian Bookstore, one of the few brick and mortar booksellers still in operation here in the Cincinnati area. Being a debut novelist makes it challenging to break through giant brick and mortar stores like B&N, and even the ones that seem like little mom and pop ventures in comparison. But you know me – I’m all about minimizing barriers and maximizing beauty and women’s best personal and professional lives, so now that I know both of these support local authors, I’m going after it with a sledge hammer and won’t stop working until I’ve scheduled some Seasons of Her Soul book signings!

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While there, I picked up one of my favorite sources of inspiration, Artful Blogging, and browsed through some other decorating magazines. Then I made my usual perusal of the Christian fiction section and was delighted to find an author I’ve never read. I’ve always devoured books and consume a healthy diet of authors with different styles as a way to feed my creativity. Trying new ones helps me broaden my horizons and hone my craft. Feeling as satisfied as could be because I was in a bookstore with a copy of Seasons of Her Soul, I couldn’t resist laying it on the coffee table along with these other delectable treats. Twas so sweet to imagine someone discovering it and plopping down in a comfy chair with a latte to savor it and my novel!

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As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose debut novelist, I’m savoring this sweet season in my journey. I say that not to flaunt it, but to encourage you. While this evening was blissful, the work day was fraught with Ds brought on by one dastardly dude! But I’m determined not to be derailed. I’ve worked too hard to build a life I love, including becoming a published author. No hater or saboteur is going to knock that down. Barnes and Noble isn’t the only thing built of brick and mortar! In fact, I’ll even say I’m stronger and more sturdy because I’m built on the Firm Foundation, the Solid Rock. That will hold me in good stead as I continue working on book signings for Seasons of Her Soul!

What Pink Collar Ds or challenges are you facing that feel as impenetrable as a solid structure? Perhaps it’s that personal situation where you can’t make a breakthrough? Or maybe you feel like you’re hitting a brick wall in your professional life… How can you be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose to minimize those barriers and to maximize your best life on the home-front and in the workplace?

To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at http://amzn.to/2CXE6Wj or http://amzn.to/2r7qtm9.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach