A Year in Review: The Top 15 Posts of Shake off the Grind from 2013


“We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations.” – Anaïs Nin

As the end of 2013 approaches, it is a great time to reflect on the past twelve months and what they have meant to you.

The exciting and uplifting moments. Your moments of courage and integrity, as well as your disappointments and struggles.

Reviewing the past year allows us to give ourselves credit where credit is due, and learn from our mistakes and mishaps along the way.

For me personally, I want to use this time to thank all the readers of this blog and to express how grateful I am that you’re a member of this community.

I am feeling more passionate than ever about writing and creating content that can help people live with purpose, power, and presence.

I want to move ahead in the New Year with the momentum that has been building over the past few months and hope that you’ll join me.

I am so excited for what 2014 has in store, and have some exciting projects that I want you to be a part of as they emerge.

(First though, I have to reach the finish line for the Becoming Unstoppable eCourse!!! Argh! [Sorry, no longer available!])

But for now, here is the best of SOTG from the past year, and an opportunity for you to reflect on what 2013 has meant to you.

1. 8 Ways to Love, Cherish, and Value

“Many people WANT to be healthy, wealthy, and happy, BUT they don’t believe they actually deserve it! If I don’t love, cherish, and value myself, it’s unlikely I will dedicate the time and energy to living a healthier and more positive lifestyle. So, learning to truly care about ourselves and honoring our well-being is necessary for living up to our potential.Here are eight ways to help you cultivate a loving and caring relationship with yourself…”

2. When Adversity Strikes, Will You Get Bitter or Better?

“Sadly, much our world is geared toward victims. Many people live as if they are at the mercy of the events and circumstances they encounter in day to day life. From the nightly news, to political propaganda, to co-workers and neighbors, we hear messages that life is a struggle and to prepare for the next problem in a “dog eat dog” world. But victimhood is a lie. There is nobody that can fix our problems except us, no matter what messages the world presents…”

“Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens.” Khalil Gibran

3. How to Find Opportunity through the Twists and Turns of Life

“When we face a crisis it can difficult to handle. Any upheaval in life, from problems with our health, relationships, or career, can lead us to question the path we’re on and the person we’re becoming. Fortunately it’s possible to turn a bad event into a moment of growth and development. Pain is difficult at any level, but for those more anticipated life obstacles, we have a choice to either let them keep us down, or find a way to use them to better ourselves…”

4. Eight Practices to Make Every Day a Remarkable Success

“Do your best each and every day. Bring your full effort in everything you do, no matter how small, and you will soon find that you are making more headway. All we have is today. Yes we must plan out our goals and have a vision, but taking action today is the most important opportunity we have at the time. So, here are eight practices to help you make the most out of each and every day!…”

5. Nine Keys to a More Fulfilling and Satisfying Life

“Sometimes life is wonderful. We’re satisfied with the situations, people, and roles we fill. Other times we can’t seem to take our focus off of the negative or the things we wish were different. When we experience frustration, disappointment, rejection, loss, and failure it can feel like a gut punch to our outlook on life. When things aren’t going how we would like there are ways to turn them around and feel better. Here are nine suggestions to find more fulfillment and satisfaction with your life circumstances…”

“How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them” – Benjamin Franklin

6. Top Seven Reasons People Stay Stuck, Helpless, and Frustrated

“No matter what we do to improve our lives, we will continue to go down the same crooked path until we take care of our self-defeating patterns. It can be helpful to take a look at what isn’t working once in a while so we can determine what can be done. If something isn’t working we can usually fix it. So, here are seven areas to be aware of that may be holding you back and keeping you from creating the life you desire…”

7. How to Neutralize Stress and Create Inner Wellness

“We can learn to neutralize stress by using our bodies metaphorical “brake pedal”. Our brake pedal is used when we slow down, and spend time in calm, caring, and connected modes. When we slow down and connect with others, our bodies create what is called oxytocin, which helps us heal, build relationships, and relax. With this in mind, here are a few ways to stay out of stress mode, put on the break, and improve inner wellness…”

8. Seven Tips to Simplify Your Life

“The more we do and more we have the more hectic and disorganized life gets. Sometimes our lack of simplicity takes away from our ability to be effective and get the best results possible. Not only can the noise and clutter around us steal from our productivity, but it can lead to stress and frustration. Here are some tips to help you get life in order and live more simply…”

“Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” ~ Lao Tzu

9. How to Have the Best Day of Your Life

“When life gets us down, it’s easy to overlook the joy and beauty around us. But what if despite the difficulties in your life you could wake up excited and ready to take on the day? Learning to weave happiness and joy into our life is within our control. We don’t have to sit, wait, and hope that our life will get better. We can start making different choices and changing our perspective today…”

10. 5 Keys to Accepting What You Can’t Change

“Do you find yourself trying to change things you have no control over? If so, you probably find it difficult to be satisfied and content with life. If we can’t change a situation or an outcome our best option is to learn how to accept it and deal with it. Acceptance is not the same as resignation or passivity. We can continue to push forward despite accepting that there are things beyond our control…”

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

11. How to Take the Bad with the Good: 5 Distinctions between Surviving and Thriving

“There was a point in the recent past where I was resistant to accept my negative qualities. I held myself to a higher standard and believed that I “should” be able to be happy and virtuous all the time. Of course, avoiding and pretending I didn’t have character flaws made everything worse. It made me anxious and neurotic. It was only when I accepted the bad days with the good days that I started having significantly less bad days!…”

12. Five Life-Changing Practices that Will Dramatically Enrich Your Life

“What if there was a magic pill that could transform the heart, reshape the mind, and help you live with enduring joy and inner-peace? Would you take it? Well sorry, there is no such pill, no matter what the pharmaceutical industry tells you. But that doesn’t mean there is no hope. It just means that becoming a more harmonious and joyful person takes a little deeper methodology…”

13. Top 25 Most Inspiring Quotes about Responding to Failure

“Failure is a part of life, a part many people have a hard time accepting. It is hard to accept that we might put our heart and soul into something only to see it dissolve. But, when we are able to accept that failure is a part of life, and that failure isn’t bad or wrong, we can keep a winning attitude around failure. We can start to use failure as a teacher to help us reach an elevated level of living…”

“Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” – Joshua J. Marine

14. Five Simple Must Have Happiness Habits to Help You Thrive

“My obsession with happiness stemmed from a belief that I could learn some snappy techniques and methods and miraculously never feel negative again. I had to accept that happiness in not always an option, and frankly, by striving to always be happy, we will go bat-shit crazy! So this last year has been about embracing and exploring the dynamics of change, challenge, and hardships. How to take the good with the bad and grow with adversity….”

15. Top 20 Traits of Resilient and Unstoppable People

“There are times when I’m grateful for my ability to “roll with the punches” and “go with the flow.” Hey some things are our of our control, why not just keep moving forward and learn from the experience, right? Because sometimes the “punches” hurt pretty damn bad! Sometimes it’s not so easy…”

 Your year in review: The good, bad, and ugly of 2013

Take a few moments to reflect on the past year. Answer these questions and review your ups and downs from 2013.

What have you learned about life and what is most important to you?

What have you accomplished?

Where did you fail and what did you learn?

What will you do differently next year as a result of what you’ve learned?

Where have you grown or developed in a healthy direction since earlier this year?

How are you a better person today than you were at the beginning of the year?

Regardless of your answers, the coming year offers new possibilities and unlimited opportunities. Commit to making 2014 the best year possible!