2018 Holiday Shopping + Sale!

 

Positively Present Gift Guide
 

Love it or hate it, the holiday season is nearly upon us, which means, for many, it's time to stress about that gift-giving list of friends, family, teachers, helpers, etc. I stressed so hard this year that I'm nearly done with my list! I absolutely hate leaving things to the last moment, especially when it comes to gift-giving. For one, I want to get those I love something they'll love and, for another, I don't have the money to waste on last-minute, frantic shopping expeditions! If you're like me and want to get your shopping done now so that you can actually enjoy the holidays, let me present you with a few Positively Present-themed gift options that are sure to delight your loved ones! 

 

Take Care PrintART PRINTS! 

Whether you're looking for a simple print, a beautiful canvas, or a framed work-of-art, they're all in my shop, ready to be shipped for perfect gift-giving. And, I've got a sale going this week to encourage you to shop now and not put it off a moment longer! Get 30% off with code "holiday" until November 18, 2018. This is the last sale of the year so if you've been eyeing any of the prints, now is the time! Also, I'm planning to switch up some of the prints in the shop in the new year so if you don't want to miss out on anything that's currently there, you'll want to shop now.  

SHOP ART PRINTS HERE! 
Use code "holiday" for 30% off 'til November 18!

 

EDM 2019 DiaryEVERY DAY MATTERS DIARIES

The 2019 Every Day Matters diaries are flying off the shelves this year so if you're looking for a great gift for someone who loves to stay inspired and organized all year long, this is perfect! (It's also a perfect gift to treat yourself with for all of your hard holiday shopping work!) The diary is available in both desk and pocket sizes so it appeals to a variety of users. I personally use my desk-sized one as a year-long gratitude journal, and I love it! 

SHOP DIARIES HERE! 

 

Positively Present Guide to LifeTHE POSITIVELY PRESENT GUIDE TO LIFE

Is there someone on your list who could use a bit more inspiration, positivity, and self-love in their life? Look no further than The Positively Present Guide to Life! This book is packed with insights, activities, and uplifting content to motivate and educate, and is sure to be useful to anyone who wants to learn more about living a positive, present life. Available in paperback or hardcover, it will surely help whoever receives it as a gift end the year (and begin 2019!) on a more positive note. 

SHOP THE BOOK HERE! 

 

Effortless Inspiration BooksEFFORTLESS INSPIRATION SERIES

If you're looking for the perfect stocking stuffer or add-on gift for someone you love, you'll find it in one of the four Effortless Inspiration books. Focusing on a single topic -- GratitudeLiving in the MomentForgiveness, or Compassion -- each book is filled with beautiful quotations, thought-provoking ideas, and even suggested activities for the reader to have a better understanding of what each of these topics really means. Not only are these little books filled with wisdom, they're also beautiful too! 

SHOP THE SERIES HERE! 

 

Loving YourselfDELIGHTFUL DIGITAL GIFTS

For those who want some interactive, digital gift-giving ideas, check out the Loving Yourself workbook, the Finding Yourself workbook, or the Self-Love Card Deck! These are perfect for those who love to work on tablets and prefer digital content to tangible gifts. They're also excellent last-minute gifts since you can simply send a link or print them out and gift them right away!

SHOP DIGITAL GIFTS HERE! 

 

PATREON SUBSCRIPTION

If you know someone who loves Positively Present (or just loves supporting creators in general), a subscription to my Patreon page might be a wonderful gift! There are a variety of different tiers, each with their own unique benefits, and signing someone else up for a subscription is a great way not only to give them exclusive access to a creator they love, but has the added bonus of supporting my work as well! Learn more about Patreon here 

 Patreon

 

BONUS! USE THE AMAZON LINK! 

This last one isn't exactly a gift, but if you do any shopping on Amazon this holiday season (or anytime!) and want to support Positively Present in the process (at no additional cost to you!), you can use the Amazon Affiliate link. Just bookmark it and use it anytime you shop on Amazon, and you'll be supporting the work I do without having to spend any money. Win, win! :)

 

I hope this little round-up of holiday gifts sparked some ideas -- or at least inspired you to start shopping now so you can enjoy the holiday season with those you love instead of searching or scrolling frantically for the perfect gift at the last minute. Gift-giving should be a joyful experience, but it tends to lose its appeal when it feels forced or frantic, so start now and you'll feel sooo good when everything is all done! Happy shopping!

 


Happiness vs. Positivity : What's the Difference?

 

Happiness vs Positivity

 

If you want to know the truth, I'm not often happy. I was born with a disposition that lends itself to melancholy and anxiety. I've always been a worrier and I'm prone to bouts of deep, dramatic sadness. But I'm not complaining. You know why? Because happiness isn't my life's goal. And, if you're looking for honesty here, it shouldn't be your life's goal either. 

One of the greatest struggles I've had over the past (almost!) 10 years of working on Positively Present is misconception that happiness = positivity. In fact, that was one of the greatest struggles of my life before I started truly understanding positivity. I was taught -- as most of us are -- that the ideal life is a happy life, but the fact is: happiness isn't something you can guarantee, and making that your life's focus is going to lead to intense disappointment and a constant, feverish need to find the next source of happiness as soon as the feeling fades. 

Back in 2015, I wrote a post called Happiness Is Not a Choice: The Difference Between Happiness + Positivity, and after reading a bunch of happiness-related quotes (in preparation for the 2018 Gratitude Challenge -- it's not too late to join in if you want!), I decided I wanted to revisit the topic since I think it's one of the most important distinctions for anyone who wants to live a more positive, present life to understand. 

Here are some of the differences between happiness and positivity, along with some thoughts on each! 

 

Happiness is a mood.
Positivity is a mindset.

Happiness is fleeting. No matter what wonderful thing happens, the happy feelings will only last so long, and that's because, like any emotion, happiness is transitory. Positivity, on the other hand, is a way of seeing the world. It's an attitude that you can embrace no matter how difficult the circumstances. Regardless of how you're feeling or what you're experiencing, you can always choose to look for the good (even if the "good" is simply a life lesson that will ultimately make you stronger) and hope for a better tomorrow.  

 

Happiness may be out of your control.
Positivity is a choice you can always make. 

When you're having a terrible day or something horrific has happened to you, it's going to be difficult (if not impossible) to be happy. Happiness can sometimes be within your control based on your choices in life, but there are a lot of things we can't control that cause unhappiness. Positivity is always within our control. Being optimistic -- no matter how bad the situation -- is a choice. You might be miserable, but with a positive attitude you can still believe that better things are coming and that you can take away something meaningful from every experience. 

 

Happiness is generally short-lived.
Positivity can be ever-present. 

Think about the last time you were truly, joyously, can't-stop-smiling happy. How long did it last? An hour? A day? A week? Happiness, no matter how amazing the cause of it, doesn't last for long. It's wonderful and amazing when it happens, but it's not a state of mind; it's an emotion. But positivity is different. It's a mindset, which means that, as long as you continue to work on it and practice it, you can keep it around forever. Happiness is fleeting, but positivity can be ever-lasting. 

 

Happiness is part of a disposition that can be inherited.
Positivity is life-changing skill that can be learned. 

Happiness is an emotion, but it's one that some people are more likely to experience simply based on how they were made. Some people are more likely to be joyful and cheerful, to have inherited a sunny disposition. Unfortunately, some are less likely to have inherited those traits, making the emotion of happiness more elusive. However, that's no reason to despair, because, regardless of the disposition you've inherited, you can learn the art of positivity through practice and patience. It's not always easy, but it's much more possible than changing your DNA! 

 

Happiness all the time would be miserable.
Positivity all the time leads to contentment. 

Can you imagine what it would be like to be happy ALL the time? In theory, it sounds amazing, but, in reality, there'd be nothing to compare it to, so it wouldn't seem like anything special. In fact, it would probably be quite maddening if all of the sudden you were given everything you ever wanted and never again felt any emotion other than happiness. Being positive all the time, however, is one of the best ways I've found to lead a more contented, accepting life. It's a skill that will transform every aspect of life -- making the happy moments happier and the painful moments less painful. 

 

Happiness is a goal that might not be achieved.
Positivity is a mindset one can adopt with certainty. 

No matter how hard you might work toward what you think will bring you happiness -- the perfect partner, career, etc. -- you might not be able to achieve it because, let's face it, life is like that sometimes. No matter how badly you want something, it's not guaranteed. And, once you get that thing, there's no guarantee it'll make you feel happy (nor a guarantee on how long it'll make you feel happy). A positive attitude is a mindset you can choose with certainty, no matter what life throws at you. And, I can 100% assure you that, no matter how bad things get, positivity will only make them better.

 

As you can see, the differences between happiness and positivity are multitudinous. As many times as they're interchanged in popular culture, it's important to remember that they're not the same thing. Happiness could have you chasing after things for decades, endlessly waiting for the day when everything feels perfect. Positivity will always meet you right where you are, good day or bad day, through all of life's ups and downs. If you spend your life chasing happiness, you'll always be on the hunt for something. But if you focus on mastering the skill of positivity, you'll be able to make the most of wherever you are, whatever comes your way.


Like what I'm doing here on Positively Present? Sign up for Patreon and support my work! Learn more about it by checking out the Patreon page or my FAQ post. And, of course, you can reach out to me via email if there's anything you want to know more about! 

 Patreon

 


Plant Positive Seeds: 3 Stress-Reducing Habits

 

Positively Present - Little Deeds

 

Feeling stressed? Yeah, you're not alone. Most of us experience stress, particularly at this time of year when we're reflecting on the months that have passed and looking forward to the typically-busy months to come. If you're stressed, you're probably thinking of in-the-moment things you can do to quell the chaotic feelings (deep breathing, taking breaks, spa-like activities, etc.), but one of the best ways to combat stress is to develop regular habits that keep you calm. Planting positive seeds in the form of stress-reducing habits can greatly reduce your stress level, in part because you don't have to think about things to help you reduce your stress -- they'll already be habits! 

There are tons of ideas for habits that reduce stress -- eating well, exercising, spending time with loved ones, etc. -- but here are three of my favorite stress-reducing habits that you might want to consider adopting. Even if you're not currently stressed, putting habits like this in place can help you when you're facing stress in the future! 

 

START A GRATITUDE JOURNAL

I'm sure this isn't the first time you've heard "gratitude journal" in connection with stress reduction, but there's a reason that it's a popular topic in the self-help community. Spending time reflecting on what you're thankful for really does help cut down on stress. Studies have shown that gratitude is good for your health and, on a personal level, I've found that tracking things I'm thankful for on a daily basis really does help me feel less stressed. 

 

PICK UP A BUNCH OF FLOWERS

Surrounding yourself with beauty and nature is another great habit to embrace if you want to stress less. New research shows that people who lived with flowers in their homes for just a few days reported a significant decrease in their levels of stress and improvements in their moods. The simple act of making it a habit to have flowers around can help you stress less! This is a great example of how a small habit -- putting some pretty flowers in your home -- can have a meaningful impact on your stress level. 

 

OFFER TO HELP SOMEONE ELSE

Another great habit to consider adopting is regularly helping out others. Whether it's volunteering for a local charity, assisting a coworker, or helping those you love, helping other people is a habit that will cut down on your stress. It might sound counterintuitive -- adding another thing to your to-do list to reduce stress? -- but studies have shown that volunteering is good for your mental health, and the more stable your mental health, the better you'll be able to cope with stress! 

 

Nobody likes being stressed, but hopefully the three habits detailed above will inspire you to consider incorporating a stress-reducing, positive habit into your life on a regular basis. While deep breaths and mindfulness techniques can help combat stress in the moment, it's a good idea to create regular positive habits that will counteract stress without you having to even think about it. So consider adding gratitude journaling into your nightly routine, picking up some flowers on the way home from work, signing up to volunteer (or any other positive habit that cuts down on stress!) and see how simple, small things can have a big impact on your stress level! 

 

 

On StreetThank you to the Society of American Florists (SAF) for kindly sponsoring today's post! Whether it’s paying for a fellow commuter’s toll, or leaving a generous restaurant tip, “paying it forward” and “random acts of kindness” give people hope and inspire kindness towards others. SAF and the whole floral industry is taking part in this movement. It started with a small idea, that grew into everyone wanting to take part. Floral industry members know the power of flowers — they see it every day in their work. Whether to give or receive, flowers make people happy. For more information on the scientifically proven benefits of flowers including new university research on how living with flowers decreases stress, visit www.aboutflowers.com/research.