Hi Digital Sisters,
I love reading O Magazine, especially the Live Your Best Life page which always includes a quote that sinks deep into my heart and soul. The photo above features a quote from Lao Tzu, a Chinese philosopher and author of the Tao Te Ching: “Cultivate the inner self, its Power becomes real .” When we slow down and take a few moments to breathe in and out deeply, we are creating space to check in with ourselves. Whenever we do this, we can get in touch with and listen to our inner selves. When is the last time you slowed down and took a few moments to breathe deeply and connect with your inner self?
This past weekend, I participated in the Digital Sisterhood Unplugged Weekend which involved taking some major breaks from my digital life, electronic devices, and to-list. During my “Unplugged” breaks I made time to practice meditation and deep breathing exercises, take a “Vin, Yin & Zin” yoga workshop that included yoga and wine (yes really!) on Friday night, go running on Saturday and Sunday mornings, practice yoga in the park on Sunday morning, and go on a long walk after church on Sunday morning. During my walk, I noticed the summer beauty of my neighborhood. Afterwards, I started to check in with and listen to my inner self. Guess what she had to say? She reminded me I needed to give myself permission to deepen my commitment to live my best life. For me, that meant completing several financial, health, home, and legal projects. In order to take action, I knew I needed accountability. That’s why I decided to participate in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative’s 40 Day Pledge campaign.
AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative is designed to help women do three things: 1) Decide what kind of future they want for themselves. 2) Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals. 3) Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives. The 40 Day Pledge offers you an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for your future. It covers four critical areas of your life—your home and community, your health, your finances and your wishes. Over the course of 40 days you will complete seven steps and receive email reminders outlining important actions to complete or consider to take charge of your future. The action steps are easy to complete. They will not take a lot of your time!
Check out my 40 Day Pledge commitment below.
I pledge to use the next 40 days to complete the checklists and worksheets on the Create.Decide.Share. web site, complete 15% of the my projects included below, and prepare a schedule for completing the remaining 85% of my projects in 2013.
1) Financial – Personal and Business Project
- File my current financial records.
- Prepare a list of all monthly expenses and account numbers for each creditor, utility providers, and mortgage company).
- Create a list of all my usernames and passwords for bank, credit, debit, web site, and social media accounts. Share the list with close family members.
- Meet with my Ameriprise financial advisor Judy Weathers for the 3rd quarter meeting to discuss my current policies for disability and long-term care, emergency fund, and retirement savings. Also, schedule the 4th quarter meeting.
- Obtain a safe deposit box.
- Submit monthly invoices to vendors and clients on time.
- Prepare a list of upcoming expenses for 3rd and 4th quarters.
- Prepare a list of all current revenue streams for the 3rd and 4th quarters.
- Identify additional revenue streams for 3rd and 4th quarters and map out plans to obtain them.
2) Health Project
- Obtain my health records from my previous doctor and send them to my new doctor.
- Schedule my eye, dental, and foot appointments before the end of the year.
- Prepare a list of my vitamins, medications, medical care providers and acupuncturist’s contact information, and health/eye/dental/long-term care/disability/life insurance policy information. Share the list with close family members.
- Review my health records and file the current records in order.
3) Home Project
- Make several copies of my deed to my property and file in my safe deposit box and personal home files.
- Update my home insurance plan inventory list with new equipment and the value of any personal property.
- Create a contact list of all home service providers (plumber, heat/air conditioner, painter, and contractors).
- Identify summer clothing and books I no longer need. Give them to charity.
- Prepare a list of items and furniture I plan to purchase in the next 6 months to a year and map out the best times to purchase them.
4) Legal Project
- Review and update my will (include statement about how to handle my social media accounts and web sites when I die) and healthcare power of attorney. Have the documents notarized. Give copies to my close family members and file a copy in the my safe deposit box.
- Review my real estate property deed and related documents. File them away safely.
Now you have a good idea of what I will be doing for the rest of the summer season. Let me ask you a question. What does living your best life mean to you?
You are worthy of living your best life. So give yourself permission to live it. Go on and jumpstart the process of living longer and living smarter by investing in yourself this summer. Join me in taking the 40 Day Pledge. Click here to get started. Enjoy your journey!
All the best,
Ananda Leeke, Digital Sisterhood Network Founder
Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.