Eric Brown, creator of the Mindful Moon iPhone app, wants to remind you to think positively.
We’re thrilled to announce a challenge with the creator of the Mindful Moon iPhone app, which helps to incorporate positivity throughout your day with reminders that make you mindful of your mood. The Think Brighter challenge will help you do just that. Here’s a little more from Eric to get you started.
Janine Adams from Peace of Mind Organizing with why sorting the mail is so important
As a professional organizer, I get to see inside people’s homes and see the challenges that face them. You know what I see? Lots and lots of paper. And much of it is unopened mail.
Why don’t people open their mail? I think sometimes they can’t be bothered, and then when the pile gets too big, they get overwhelmed. And the mail can get scary. There can be correspondence from the IRS, past-due notices, denials from insurance companies lurking in there. But you know what? Ignoring that stuff doesn’t make it go away. And it sure doesn’t make the situation any better.
The other thing to remember is that sometimes there’s great stuff in the mail. A letter from a loved one. A refund check. Maybe even a notice that you’ve inherited something inside a really scary-looking letter from an attorney. Hey, yesterday I received a thank-you card with a $25 Starbucks card inside. I’d be bummed if I’d never opened that.
If you stay on top of your mail, you don’t have to look at the piles. You don’t have to worry about what might be lurking there. You have an opportunity to take action on any bad news that might be there. You pay your bills on time. I bet you can guess that I think staying on top of the mail is a good thing.
How do you go about doing it? The system that I suggest to my clients, which has been very successful for most, is quite simple. Here are the steps:
* Buy a desktop file box, with no lid, no more than about six inches deep. Make it pretty, so you can keep it out on a desk. I call this your Action Box.
Click through to read more of Janine’s tips and claim a valuable discount on her organizing guide and e-course…
Featured Friend of DailyFeats: The Giving Keys
This week our featured friend is Caitlin Crosby of The Giving Keys, a charity that sells custom-made key necklaces engraved with empowering words. All proceeds go toward helping the homeless people that work there afford start new lives off the streets. And the matching featured feat? !payitforward, of course! I spoke with Caitlin last week. Here’s her story…
Singer/actress Caitlin Crosby had been wearing a New York City hotel room key around her neck on a chain for a while when she happened to be standing in line at a locksmith shop and saw him engraving numbers onto keys.
"Do you by any chance have letters?" She asked him, thinking it’d be cool to have the word "LOVE" engraved on her key necklace. He did - and so the first giving key was born.
Caitlin and one of her key necklackes from The Giving Keys Facebook page
The Giving Keys evolved from being just a crafty, unique piece of jewelry that Caitlin wore in her everyday life, to the pay-it-forward model it now is. She gave away that first key to a friend for her birthday. Why? Caitlin said, ”When you have that gut feeling that you know it’s going to make that person’s day and they need it for some reason, it’s gonna mean something to them. It’s about having the mentality of not having our hands holding tight to our material possessions,” Caitlin told me.
Today, The Giving Keys has morphed into a charity aimed at helping young homeless people get off the street and make money doing rewarding work. Awesome, right? It began with Rob and Sera, a couple whom Caitlin met in LA and decided to take to dinner (see more about this part of the journey in Caitlin’s video here). They’re now gainfully employed, and Rob is starting community college this month.
The charity employs nine people at present, and they spend their days carefully engraving words like “HOPE”, “FAITH”, “DREAM” on old, reused keys. And business is good: the necklaces are sold in many specialty boutiques, as well as online. Caitlin told me although they’ve been overwhelmed by requests, they are excited because, as she said, “We want to give the people as much work as possible so they make as much money as possible.”
This model of empowerment is working, and not just in the financial sense. Caitlin stressed that The Giving Keys is special and unique because it truly brings everyone together. From the person giving a special key to a loved one who seems to need it, to those requesting certain words for their key, to finally, the ones engraving the words, the workers themselves: ”People all around the world are in need of these things, these words, in their lives. The people making these feel like, Wow, we all have the same emotions, everyone starves for it,” Caitlin said. “It’s interesting that the people engraving the keys are having to look at these words all day long, having to pound out the word DREAM or HOPE or FAITH. Whatever they’re going through, they can’t help but be encouraged and know they’re not alone.”
The most popular “key”word? Strength. Caitlin thinks it’s because “the obstacles that we’re all faced with can weaken us, and a lot of people may feel they need a reminder”. Scroll through the stories on The Giving Keys website, where anyone who has bought a key or given their key to someone is invited to post: you’ll see echoes of this, that the key - this one, small thing - can serve as a talisman for someone who needs a little bit of something to keep them going.
A custom-ordered key from a mother to her daughter who was going through hard times (from Facebook)
Like we always say: small positive actions lead to big change, and The Giving Keys is just another wonderful example of that. Thanks, Caitlin, for sharing your story with DailyFeats!
What would your word be? Let us know on Twitter with the hashtag #givingkeys @dailyfeats.
Featured Friend of DailyFeats: Greatist.com
Our friends over at Greatist run a site that’s not only pleasing to the eye, but to your fitness, health, and happiness meters as well. They cover an array of subjects (as you can see in their A-Z Guide) and the writers are spunky, spiritual, and savvy in the ways of living their best life. They even included DailyFeats on their list of the 45 most innovative health and fitness startups. Thanks, guys!
I spoke with one of the Greatists, Laura Schwecherl, over the holidays and she wanted to share their post 11 Ways to Keep New Year’s Resolutions. It’s written by Kelly Fitzpatrick, and we especially love #7-10 in the list:
7. Trade it in. We’re all about keeping ourselves accountable by trading in those bad habits for good ones. Check in !skipsoda, but don’t forget !hydrate when you choose water or a healthy juice option instead.
8. Team up. DailyFeats encourages our users to invite their friends and loved ones to become Habit Buddies. That way when you complete the feat you’ve linked to someone else, they’ll be notified and can cheer you on, and vice versa!
9. Get rewarded. I mean, this is a no-brainer. After kicking all those resolutions in the butt, starting brand new habits, and checking them all in, you deserve a little treat, don’t you? That’s what our rewards are for - premium ones and donations to our nonprofit partners.
10. Share it. It’s the age of the share, and DailyFeats makes it easy for you. As soon as you check in a feat, you can Tweet it or share it to your Facebook wall. And why not? Might as well show everyone how awesome you are. (Plus, we love re-sharing your feat check-ins on our own page as well.)
Make sure you head on over to the piece to read the rest. They’re musts in this game of starting (and keeping) new habits.
What new habits are you trying to start this January, Featers? (I’m cutting down on caffeine, keeping in better touch with my extended family, and eating better. Hopefully. Keep me in check on my DF page if you could!) Reply in the comments, or tweet us! @sahopson or @thedailyfeats.