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Photo by Allie Smith on Unsplash

I’ve been stuck in a slump before. It isn’t pretty. The motivation to do things just vanishes. In fact, just this past month, one reared its ugly head, but this time I was prepared. The good news is that there is so much you can do to get “unstuck” and conquer the things holding you back.

Here a few things to try:


February 7, 2020 / Miriam Clifford

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Photo by Greg Rakozy on Unsplash

Fear. It can be said that fear is the greatest enemy of the mind. The time lost on fear can be the difference between achieving a life dream and putting it off indefinitely. We hesitate. We doubt. We wait. We let ourselves off the hook, saying it is too hard. We remind ourselves of our weaknesses, and say, “it’s impossible.” Fear paralyzes our greatest passions. The simple words , “I can’t” are the death of many dreams.

When I was a little kid, I used to work at my parent’s grocery store in Washington Heights, and I saw an immigration lawyer’s office. I said with certainty, “Mom, that is what I want to be.” My father believed that being a lawyer was not a career for a woman, and my mother who lived vicariously through me, saw my success in my science classes as a sign I should be a doctor. I forced my way through a pre-medical major, but things never really clicked. My dream felt hijacked. The circumstances around me created a perfect storm to live up to expectation, rather than my personal quest and my dream crashed. …


And Why I Write

“Don’t only practice your Art, but force your way into its Secrets. For It and Knowledge can raise Men to the Divine.” -Ludwig van Beethoven

Calling myself a ‘writer’ is still hard for me. I began writing as a way to escape. As an undergraduate in the wrong major at Cornell University — I found myself turning to writing as a way to entertain myself, and along the way it helped me find my true self. I wasn’t a doctor or a scientist like my parents predicted— like many minority 1st and 2nd generation students I found myself battling with the things I loved to do and what my family told me, I had to do. I kept my writing a secret so that I could make my family proud and continue on the track they had set for me. My mother had lost her dream of becoming a doctor after marrying my dad and having kids, and instead settled on becoming a nurse — she would often correct me she was a registered nurse, which meant additional schooling. …


What do I really need to do to be happy? How can we live more joyfully?

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Discussions of happiness are as old as humankind. Hunter-gather societies looked to the sky to finding meaning and purpose in something greater than themselves.


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As parents, we often have a million competing responsibilities, but research suggests that modeling healthy behaviors helps kids develop healthy habits, too. A study by Duke Medicine in Science Daily (2013) suggests that kids were more active & made better food choices, when mothers encouraged & modeled fitness & healthy food choices.

According to the US Department of Health & Human Services, “Caregivers play a very important role in determining youth participation in physical activities — how much, how often, and what type of physical activity. [and] . . .help …


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“If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance.”

-Orville Wright

In a small bicycle shop in Dayton, Ohio, the Wright brothers made a discovery that would forever change the history of the world. This small bicycle shop still stands today, thanks the conservation efforts of community nonprofits, local leaders, veterans, and countless volunteers.

The aviation tour follows the incredible history of the Wright brothers discovery of flight. It includes over 16 historical sites, interpretive centers, and museums dedicated to aviation.

According to NASA, 25 astronauts have called Ohio home, among them John Glenn and Neil Armstrong. It is no wonder that Dayton continues to inspire people to explore its rich history. The 1905 Flyer, Flyer III, the world’s first practical plane, which was restored under the direction of Orville Wright himself, can still be viewed at Carillon Historical Park in Dayton — a stop on the aviation tour. …


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Nestled in the Hudson Valley is a historic home and nature preserve called Locust Grove. Once the home of Samuel F. B. Morse, “the Father of the Telegraph” , this mansion is a hidden gem on the Hudson River, that speaks of a bygone era. In these times, homes were often the center of social life and entertainment. The sweeping views are impressive and the mansion’s unique architecture is almost enveloped in a warm embrace by the the nature around it.

The mansion is right on Route 9, hidden from view, and passing it you could easily miss it, because it pushed back from the main road. I found it one day while driving to Starbucks and was surprised to learn its history. The grounds are mainly behind the house, so it is awe-striking to actually walk them and see how large the estate really is. This site is completely worth a Sunday drive. The estate includes 180 acres, and the grounds boast well maintained trails that are easy enough to walk for a family with children. The trails take you to a beautiful view of the Hudson river, and include many beautiful nooks and crannies. …


The Lost of Art of Letter Writing

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Before I met my husband, I read books about letter writing. Many of these books were historical in nature. I loved reading love poems sent in letters by lovers separated by the hands of fate, or letters detailing the nuances of a particular historical era. It was all very romantic in my head. Well, a few years down the line, little did I know the important role letters would play in my own life.

When my husband and I first got married in 2004, he was stationed in Fort Knox, Kentucky to do his Officer Basic Training. I, on the other hand, went out to Seattle to get settled at his first duty station and find a job. So the one way we decided to keep in touch was to write letters to each other. I brought something called “Circle Journey” to correspond with him. The kit had this journal we both had to send back and forth, along with pictures or drawings. I bet one day someone will read this and compare mailing something of that nature, to the days of the pony express. I found journaling and sending it back to him was a way to connect more deeply than a phone conversation. It really helped me through the time we had apart, and now I still have that journal as a memory. …


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“True, This! — Beneath the rule of men entirely greatThe pen is mightier than the sword. BeholdThe arch-enchanters wand! — itself is nothing! — But taking sorcery from the master-handTo paralyse the Cæsars, and to strikeThe loud earth breathless! — Take away the sword —

States can be saved without it!”

— Edward Bulwer-Lytton, from Richelieu or the Conspiracy, Act II, Scene II.

Some phrases last the test of time, and when uttered, they remind us of fundamental truths or pieces of wisdom about life. Words survive long after battles, empires, and leaders have passed and seen their glory fade. …


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Books open the door every time we knock. They inspire us to live, to dream, and to change the world. Their pages are constant-a cheerleader, a support, and a friend. Sometimes, we come to a time in life, when we want a book to speak to our heart.

Some books possess a unique, transcendental quality that carries through to the ages, with messages that speak to the very core of a shared human experience. …

About

Miriam Clifford

Cornell B.S., Freelance Writer. I write about joyful living at Joymailed.com & travel blog at Sundaydrivesusa.com

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