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VICTIM OF RAPE..

I don’t know how I managed to, I just knew that I was able to find my way home after fighting against his tight grip. I really can’t explain how devastated I am right now. My fiancé  suddenly became a beast just because I didn’t permit him to have sex with me.

It's not the first time I am experiencing this but the difference is, I got away this time. I thought ken was different. He is a Christian. He speaks in tongues. In fact, he is the youth pastor of his Church—so respected and admired.

Why is all this happening to me, am I cursed? 

What ken did to me this evening brought back the memory of the incident that took place five years ago in my room when I was on campus.

It was not really my fault because I wasn't aware of his plans in the first place. It was like the usual visit to my place after examination, before the end of the semester. I was happy to see him as usual. We were in a relationship, though he wasn't the Church type but he is a good guy and caring at that.

My boyfriend came visiting and I made him comfortable in my abode by preparing his favourite meal and made him feel at home.

The sun began to say farewell to daylight and the twinkle twinkle little stars took over the mantle from day and stood in the gap for itself.

My roommate had gone for vigil as the semester was over. He had never slept in my place before, neither have I in his place even though he stays alone. I was surprised because it's past 8 and he wasn't making plans of leaving anytime soon.

As if reading my mind, he said he won't be leaving as he planned to spend the night with me before going home and moreover, he knows my roommate had gone for vigil. I didn't want to argue.

I adjusted the bedspread in the room and I made sure the door was properly locked, then we went to bed together.

And in the middle of the night, I felt a movement on my body. I thought it was cockroach but I knew it wasn't somehow, then he spoke in the dark, "Baby I want to feel you a little, maybe it will help me sleep as I'm finding it difficult to sleep." When did I turn to lullaby? I said in my mind.

Still struggling to open my mouth and say the word "NO, PLEASE" became a problem for me. While still contemplating how to turn him down without upsetting him, the pleasure I was getting wouldn't allow me. Many thoughts ran through my small mind and I finally said NO... NO... NO... DON'T.

But my plea fell on deaf ears. I got up and turned on the light and behold the TONY I saw was not the guy I knew and loved. He was so strange and different. 

Before I knew what was going on my clothes and body were separated. Until today, I can't explain how that magic happened within seconds. "Please don't", was the song I sang till my roommate came back in the morning.

I ended everything with him and I hated him from that day onward.

Or is it when I visited my friend from the fellowship and how I was raped in his room, I wished I died that day. The looks on his friend's face and neighbors, I picked my shattered self and walked head down to my room.

Or when I went to a remote village for service and the accommodation I was able to get because I was new to the area, how thieves visited that day and raped all the ladies there, of course I was not excluded.

I sometimes asked myself how can one person, I mean one small lady, have 3 rape cases in her life time from different men—beasts I mean.

I intentionally stayed away from men, anything men at all for four years.

Ken changed everything. I mean, he was an angel sent to wipe my sorrow and pains away, at least so I thought.

The testimony from his congregation about him gave me no doubt that he was the one.

TONY blamed me for what he did to me, he blamed me for raping me, imagine that!! For years I was with the guilt that I caused the rape, but I realized it wasn't my fault in any way. 

Ken taught on rape on one of the days I went to church. Yes, I realized I had forgotten God and had to go back to Him. My life was empty, full of bitterness and pain. I needed to be free at least, I want to drop the heavy loads I was carrying daily. 

It was so obvious that something was missing in my life, something no man can give. I resumed going to Church and studying the word.

I was invited to ken's Church and l liked the atmosphere and decided to stay, I decided to pitch my tent there. That was when the announcement of their youth programme was made, I gave it a thought to attend.

After hearing the word from the mouth of an handsome preacher like Ken, I was broken and I rededicated my life to God.

We became friends and finally got into a relationship. I finally thought THIS IS IT. 

I was happy, he was happy too and everything was just fine. I thought he was different because he talked about marriage, the very first guy to tell me he wants to get married to me.

WHY?                 WHY??                 WHY???

All men are after sex! I screamed at myself many times in the bathroom.

Sleep had lost its place in me that day, so I decided to surf my phone.

In the process, I saw a post on Facebook about rape by Louisa Ene Winnie and thought to read through. I then decided to tell my friend about my ordeals. I decided to share my story to let someone know how I have been feeling.

Gift was my roommate from year one until we graduated. She was devoted and humble. I have always admired her—everything about her—but I felt since we were both Christians there is nothing special about her. Notwithstanding, deep down I knew she was a better Christian than I am and a true one at that.

Fortunately for me, we attend the same Church but she is married with two kids and I try to avoid her most times in Church for no particular reason if you ask me or maybe am not being truthful to myself.

I know she somehow knew about me and pastor Ken (as he is fondly called by members).

I phoned her the next day and after exchanging pleasantries I told her I wanted to see her and it was very urgent.

Gift is so caring that she agreed to see me that day and we fixed a venue for our meeting, of course my place.

Immediately I saw my friend I couldn't hold back the tears, as I cried on her soft shoulders.

After some minutes of silence she said pastor Ken told her what happened and he is asking for my forgiveness.

I wasn't surprised because I once introduced him to Gift as my roommate and friend in school. But I didn't think he would tell her what he did to me, oh sorry, what he wanted to do to me.

She told me the same guy who attempted to rape me reported to her that I no longer answer his calls nor respond to his messages. “He must have lost his mind. What is he thinking?" I said and immediately narrated my side of the story to Gift. She just smirked after my long narration. 

“Gift, what’s all this? I expected you to scream and thank God for me but you are smiling instead. Don’t tell me you are for him or is it because he is a pastor?"

“Hey! Calm down” Gift said still smiling. "Do you know enough about this guy before going into a relationship with him?" She asked me. "Off course. I know his family members and a lot about his background. Besides the testimonies I heard about him gave me convictions that he is the one for me. He is a Pastor, he preaches so well and speaks in tongues."

"Babe, that’s not what I mean. Forget his family and his positions now. What do you know about his values? The person he is?"

“Eeeemmm….. he is a Christian, a Pastor.” "Forget all that for now!" Gift replied almost immediately. "I would be realistic with you, Cherish. I do not blame your ex boyfriends if not you. How could you be so insensitive that you are making the same mistake again?" 

"Gift tell me what you know, I want to be married like you and have a family."

"Cherish, in choosing a partner, if your values are not known and considered then you are planting banana peels on your way because the relationship might never result in marriage and even if it does the marriage have high chances of being faulty. You know why? Value systems is key to building solid relationships."

"This is why friendship should be the foundation of every boy and girl relationship. It is during the friendship stage that you get to discover his or her values like, his stand on purity, his goals, his priorities and many more and whether they align with yours or not. Then you get to know if he or she is someone you can go into a relationship with. Relationship is by choice just like friendship not by force or by pressure."

“Gift, how do I know someone’s values? After all I am not a witch.” "You ask questions dear. You need to ask questions concerning what you want to know. You don’t keep mute and be assuming that since he says he is a Christian or a Pastor and he goes to church he is for sexual purity. It doesn’t work that way."

"Pastors are humans too, though expectations are much of them but remember they are humans and thus not excluded from mistakes. They are men and women with blood flowing in their veins."

"You could ask like this, what is your view about sexual abstinence until marriage? What are your priorities?

I won't dispute the fact that every guy irrespective of who they are and what office they occupy wants just one thing in a relationship. Which is SEX, SEX and SEX!  Yes. I can say that again and again. They want it now, soon or later after marriage. What depicts their values is when they want it. 

It is now your choice to choose the one you want among them. That is why questioning is very vital before accepting a relationship and during the relationship before marriage is finally considered.

The habit of not asking questions has brought marriages to an end. Ask questions. It will save you from unnecessary heartbreaks, like this. Thank God you were able to escape. 

Another thing you should know, you shouldn't be visiting him alone especially in his house, except family house, and ensure people are around when you're together. If you must go alone make sure it is an open place like eateries or gardens, places where people are. Leave no room for temptation at all.

In all I have said forgive him but mind you the decision is still yours to make, I won't tell you to go back to him or not, with all I have said make your conclusion. Of course, ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Mind you, If your relationship with God is not solid, your relationship with the man will fail. 

Let no one tell you otherwise, Sex isn't part of a relationship personal terms and agreement. It is part of marriage covenant."

I wanted telling her about the other two rape cases that happened to me but I think I know what to do now, heal properly with the help of the Holy Spirit, forgive my offenders including Ken and solidify my relationship with God. 

Enough of keeping to myself, it's time to grow and glow with God's children. I saw lots of impactful articles on Winnie Ene Louisa's timeline for singles, it's time to read them up and learn.

Of course I'm not going back to ken but I must forgive him and move on.

Thanks so much Gift, I wish I had spoken to you long time ago just maybe things wouldn't be like this, but I'm glad to know now.

We are so many, Cherish, out there dying in silent pain. Some have been so consumed with self guilt that suicide was their only escape. 

Some blame their self for crimes that wasn't their fault that low self-esteem is now their name.

Jesus is the solution to all situation.

I'm Winnie making impact.

I say NO to rape.

I say NO to suicide.

Yes to freedom in  Christ.

I help singles lead godly healthy relationship.

I Write, Speak and Advocate.

©Winnie Ene Louisa

#Saynotorape
#saynotosexualabuse
#saynotosuicide

23 Love
2 Share

VICTIM OF RAPE..

I don’t know how I managed to, I just knew that I was able to find my way home after fighting against his tight grip. I really can’t explain how devastated I am right now. My fiancé suddenly became a beast just because I didn’t permit him to have sex with me.

It's not the first time I am experiencing this but the difference is, I got away this time. I thought ken was different. He is a Christian. He speaks in tongues. In fact, he is the youth pastor of his Church—so respected and admired.

Why is all this happening to me, am I cursed?

What ken did to me this evening brought back the memory of the incident that took place five years ago in my room when I was on campus.

It was not really my fault because I wasn't aware of his plans in the first place. It was like the usual visit to my place after examination, before the end of the semester. I was happy to see him as usual. We were in a relationship, though he wasn't the Church type but he is a good guy and caring at that.

My boyfriend came visiting and I made him comfortable in my abode by preparing his favourite meal and made him feel at home.

The sun began to say farewell to daylight and the twinkle twinkle little stars took over the mantle from day and stood in the gap for itself.

My roommate had gone for vigil as the semester was over. He had never slept in my place before, neither have I in his place even though he stays alone. I was surprised because it's past 8 and he wasn't making plans of leaving anytime soon.

As if reading my mind, he said he won't be leaving as he planned to spend the night with me before going home and moreover, he knows my roommate had gone for vigil. I didn't want to argue.

I adjusted the bedspread in the room and I made sure the door was properly locked, then we went to bed together.

And in the middle of the night, I felt a movement on my body. I thought it was cockroach but I knew it wasn't somehow, then he spoke in the dark, "Baby I want to feel you a little, maybe it will help me sleep as I'm finding it difficult to sleep." When did I turn to lullaby? I said in my mind.

Still struggling to open my mouth and say the word "NO, PLEASE" became a problem for me. While still contemplating how to turn him down without upsetting him, the pleasure I was getting wouldn't allow me. Many thoughts ran through my small mind and I finally said NO... NO... NO... DON'T.

But my plea fell on deaf ears. I got up and turned on the light and behold the TONY I saw was not the guy I knew and loved. He was so strange and different.

Before I knew what was going on my clothes and body were separated. Until today, I can't explain how that magic happened within seconds. "Please don't", was the song I sang till my roommate came back in the morning.

I ended everything with him and I hated him from that day onward.

Or is it when I visited my friend from the fellowship and how I was raped in his room, I wished I died that day. The looks on his friend's face and neighbors, I picked my shattered self and walked head down to my room.

Or when I went to a remote village for service and the accommodation I was able to get because I was new to the area, how thieves visited that day and raped all the ladies there, of course I was not excluded.

I sometimes asked myself how can one person, I mean one small lady, have 3 rape cases in her life time from different men—beasts I mean.

I intentionally stayed away from men, anything men at all for four years.

Ken changed everything. I mean, he was an angel sent to wipe my sorrow and pains away, at least so I thought.

The testimony from his congregation about him gave me no doubt that he was the one.

TONY blamed me for what he did to me, he blamed me for raping me, imagine that!! For years I was with the guilt that I caused the rape, but I realized it wasn't my fault in any way.

Ken taught on rape on one of the days I went to church. Yes, I realized I had forgotten God and had to go back to Him. My life was empty, full of bitterness and pain. I needed to be free at least, I want to drop the heavy loads I was carrying daily.

It was so obvious that something was missing in my life, something no man can give. I resumed going to Church and studying the word.

I was invited to ken's Church and l liked the atmosphere and decided to stay, I decided to pitch my tent there. That was when the announcement of their youth programme was made, I gave it a thought to attend.

After hearing the word from the mouth of an handsome preacher like Ken, I was broken and I rededicated my life to God.

We became friends and finally got into a relationship. I finally thought THIS IS IT.

I was happy, he was happy too and everything was just fine. I thought he was different because he talked about marriage, the very first guy to tell me he wants to get married to me.

WHY? WHY?? WHY???

All men are after sex! I screamed at myself many times in the bathroom.

Sleep had lost its place in me that day, so I decided to surf my phone.

In the process, I saw a post on Facebook about rape by Louisa Ene Winnie and thought to read through. I then decided to tell my friend about my ordeals. I decided to share my story to let someone know how I have been feeling.

Gift was my roommate from year one until we graduated. She was devoted and humble. I have always admired her—everything about her—but I felt since we were both Christians there is nothing special about her. Notwithstanding, deep down I knew she was a better Christian than I am and a true one at that.

Fortunately for me, we attend the same Church but she is married with two kids and I try to avoid her most times in Church for no particular reason if you ask me or maybe am not being truthful to myself.

I know she somehow knew about me and pastor Ken (as he is fondly called by members).

I phoned her the next day and after exchanging pleasantries I told her I wanted to see her and it was very urgent.

Gift is so caring that she agreed to see me that day and we fixed a venue for our meeting, of course my place.

Immediately I saw my friend I couldn't hold back the tears, as I cried on her soft shoulders.

After some minutes of silence she said pastor Ken told her what happened and he is asking for my forgiveness.

I wasn't surprised because I once introduced him to Gift as my roommate and friend in school. But I didn't think he would tell her what he did to me, oh sorry, what he wanted to do to me.

She told me the same guy who attempted to rape me reported to her that I no longer answer his calls nor respond to his messages. “He must have lost his mind. What is he thinking?" I said and immediately narrated my side of the story to Gift. She just smirked after my long narration.

“Gift, what’s all this? I expected you to scream and thank God for me but you are smiling instead. Don’t tell me you are for him or is it because he is a pastor?"

“Hey! Calm down” Gift said still smiling. "Do you know enough about this guy before going into a relationship with him?" She asked me. "Off course. I know his family members and a lot about his background. Besides the testimonies I heard about him gave me convictions that he is the one for me. He is a Pastor, he preaches so well and speaks in tongues."

"Babe, that’s not what I mean. Forget his family and his positions now. What do you know about his values? The person he is?"

“Eeeemmm….. he is a Christian, a Pastor.” "Forget all that for now!" Gift replied almost immediately. "I would be realistic with you, Cherish. I do not blame your ex boyfriends if not you. How could you be so insensitive that you are making the same mistake again?"

"Gift tell me what you know, I want to be married like you and have a family."

"Cherish, in choosing a partner, if your values are not known and considered then you are planting banana peels on your way because the relationship might never result in marriage and even if it does the marriage have high chances of being faulty. You know why? Value systems is key to building solid relationships."

"This is why friendship should be the foundation of every boy and girl relationship. It is during the friendship stage that you get to discover his or her values like, his stand on purity, his goals, his priorities and many more and whether they align with yours or not. Then you get to know if he or she is someone you can go into a relationship with. Relationship is by choice just like friendship not by force or by pressure."

“Gift, how do I know someone’s values? After all I am not a witch.” "You ask questions dear. You need to ask questions concerning what you want to know. You don’t keep mute and be assuming that since he says he is a Christian or a Pastor and he goes to church he is for sexual purity. It doesn’t work that way."

"Pastors are humans too, though expectations are much of them but remember they are humans and thus not excluded from mistakes. They are men and women with blood flowing in their veins."

"You could ask like this, what is your view about sexual abstinence until marriage? What are your priorities?

I won't dispute the fact that every guy irrespective of who they are and what office they occupy wants just one thing in a relationship. Which is SEX, SEX and SEX! Yes. I can say that again and again. They want it now, soon or later after marriage. What depicts their values is when they want it.

It is now your choice to choose the one you want among them. That is why questioning is very vital before accepting a relationship and during the relationship before marriage is finally considered.

The habit of not asking questions has brought marriages to an end. Ask questions. It will save you from unnecessary heartbreaks, like this. Thank God you were able to escape.

Another thing you should know, you shouldn't be visiting him alone especially in his house, except family house, and ensure people are around when you're together. If you must go alone make sure it is an open place like eateries or gardens, places where people are. Leave no room for temptation at all.

In all I have said forgive him but mind you the decision is still yours to make, I won't tell you to go back to him or not, with all I have said make your conclusion. Of course, ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Mind you, If your relationship with God is not solid, your relationship with the man will fail.

Let no one tell you otherwise, Sex isn't part of a relationship personal terms and agreement. It is part of marriage covenant."

I wanted telling her about the other two rape cases that happened to me but I think I know what to do now, heal properly with the help of the Holy Spirit, forgive my offenders including Ken and solidify my relationship with God.

Enough of keeping to myself, it's time to grow and glow with God's children. I saw lots of impactful articles on Winnie Ene Louisa's timeline for singles, it's time to read them up and learn.

Of course I'm not going back to ken but I must forgive him and move on.

Thanks so much Gift, I wish I had spoken to you long time ago just maybe things wouldn't be like this, but I'm glad to know now.

We are so many, Cherish, out there dying in silent pain. Some have been so consumed with self guilt that suicide was their only escape.

Some blame their self for crimes that wasn't their fault that low self-esteem is now their name.

Jesus is the solution to all situation.

I'm Winnie making impact.

I say NO to rape.

I say NO to suicide.

Yes to freedom in Christ.

I help singles lead godly healthy relationship.

I Write, Speak and Advocate.

©Winnie Ene Louisa

3 Love
I have goals .
Even my goals have goals ,
 and those goals have goals of having goals.

😂😂😂😂😂😂🔥🔥🔥

15 Love

7 Secret Tips to Make Your Relationship Last Longer
There is no elaborate strategy or blueprint to the perfect relationship. In all honestly, all relationships are messy, and they all come with their own share of drama. It is your personal decision to make about whether you chose to work through it, or drop it completely. Make this decision as early in the relationship as possible, this will ensure that minimum damage is caused.
Here are a few secret (but seemingly simple) tips to a long lasting relationship:
1.) Be spontaneous.

Source
At no point in a relationship, should you give up. Keep them on their toes and always try to surprise them. Take random trips, plan crazy dates and take their breath away at every chance you get. Male or female, it is your duty to keep each other happy and interested throughout the relationship. If it’s worth it, put in the effort.
2.) Communicate.

Source
Don’t bottle up your feelings. This might work in the short term, but eventually, you will implode and cause more drama than you can imagine. Tell them if something bothers you, and more importantly if something makes you happy. This will ensure that they know what to avoid doing, and what to do to make your day better.
3.) Hook up.

Source
Don’t underestimate the power of some good between the sheets time. While you should be careful to prevent this from becoming all you do in your relationship, it is important to maintain a healthy balance. Not only is it a great stressbuster, it also gives you the opportunity to try out new and interesting things here too.
4.) Don’t lie.

Source
White lies to prevent drama and hurt are excusable – but do not make it a habit. When you find yourself lying about serious issues, or trying to cover up for yourself, you know you’ve taken it too far. Honesty is of utmost importance in a relationship. Without it, you lose your trust and then there’s no way to save whatever you may have with them.
5.) Don’t overshare.

Source
Don’t talk about sex with your ex, don’t constantly compare them to your past and definitely avoid criticizing them too much. Somethings must be kept to yourself, but do not use this as an excuse to be dishonest and hide the truth from them either.
6.) Be supportive.

Source
Support their dreams. While it is important for you to keep them sane and grounded, do not abuse this power by holding them back. Let them live their lives and fulfil their goals. Your job as their partner is to build them up and help them achieve everything they want. Be sure that this will always be reciprocated.
7.) Don't Judge

Source
Be the person they can come to with their problems. If they’re constantly worried about what you will think of them, or if you will judge them, they will find someone else to confide in. Provide them with a safe and secure environment in which they can share their deepest insecurities and feelings. This will bind you together in an unbreakable hold.


Source:
http://www.thatscoop.com/article/gabyextross/tips-relationship

3 Love

The Secret to Happiness Is 10 Specific Behaviors

Despite happiness being a primary human motivation, only one in three Americans say they’re very happy.
Several years ago in an interview with Conan O’Brien, Louis C. K. tells of flying on a newly equipped Wi-Fi airplane. He was amazed by the new technology. Until, during the flight, the Wi-Fi went down. Immediately, the man next to him became extremely upset. “As though the world owes this man something he only knew existed 10 seconds ago.”
Louis C. K. continues by describing people’s absurd frustrations with flying in general. People complain about it all the time “It was the worst day of my life! It took 20 minutes to board! We had to sit on the runway for 40 minutes!”
We hear complaints like these all the time. As if we’ve forgotten how incredible it is that humans can fly at all.
How are we so quick to take for granted the remarkable things going on in life?
Why is it so easy to complain?
Why do we focus on the negative?
Everything is amazing and nobody is happy.
However, happiness can easily be achieved even without the brilliant advances in the world.
Rather than being reactive to what’s going on around us, happy people take control of their lives and emotions. If you are unhappy with your life, who or what else can you blame than yourself? And if you can blame someone or something else, how is blame going to make your life any better?
Bad stuff happens to everyone. But life isn’t about what happens to you. It’s about how you proactively respond.
The following 10 behaviors, if applied, will change your life. Let me be clear, if you do these things, you will be an incredibly happy person.


1. Let Go Of The Need For Specific Outcomes
Not everything in life goes exactly how we plan. There are setbacks. Stuff happens. We mess up. Over-obsessing and basing happiness on specific outcomes leads to misery. Jeremy Piven, the famous actor, was recently interviewed by Success Magazine. During the interview, he mentioned that, as an actor, the only way to work is to go out and audition for specific roles.The challenge most actors/actresses face is that they get in their own way. It doesn’t matter how much homework they’ve done. If they’re too tied to a specific result, they can’t be present in the moment. They can’t truly perform their art. They come off as desperate. They get in their own way. Their performance isn’t what it could have been.Jeremy said that when he quit worrying about a specific result, he was able to be present during his auditions. He was able to be completely who he wanted to be. He wasn’t trying to be what he thought others wanted him to be. He performed his art.If he didn’t get the gig, either they didn’t get it or it just wasn’t the right fit. So he moves on to the next. In this way, he’s able to get the jobs he’s supposed to have. He’s not just trying to get anything he can get.
2. Define Your Own Success And Happiness
“Be everything to everybody and you’ll be nothing for yourself.” — John Rushton


No two human beings are the same. So why should we have one standard of success? Seeking society’s standard of success is an endless rat-race. There will always be someone better than you. You’ll never have the time to do everything.Instead, you recognize that every decision has opportunity cost. When you choose one thing, you simultaneously don’t choose several others. And that’s okay. Actually, it’s beautiful because we get to choose our ultimate ideal. We must define success, wealth, and happiness in our own terms because if we don’t, society will for us — and we will always fall short. We’ll always be left wanting. We’ll always be stuck comparing ourselves and competing with other people. Our lives will be an endless race for the next best thing. We’ll never experience contentment.
3. Commit 100 Percent To The Things That Make You Happy
“Many of us have convinced ourselves that we are able to break our own personal rules “just this once.” In our minds, we can justify these small choices. None of those things, when they first happen, feels like a life-changing decision. The marginal costs are almost always low. But each of those decisions can roll up into a much bigger picture, turning you into the kind of person you never wanted to be.” — Clayton Christensen
People are really good at self-sabotage. We consistently behave in ways that contradict our goals and ideals. This is incongruence. As Mahatma Gandhi has said, “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” The smaller the gap between what you should do, and what you actually do — the happier you will be.
Hence, Clayton Christensen says 100 percent commitment is easier than 98 percent commitment. When you fully commit to something, the decision has been made. Consequently, regarding that thing, all future decisions have been made.
Unless you’re committed 100 percent, you will always be a victim to external circumstances. By relying on willpower, you’ll crumble more often than you think. Research has found that people over-inflate their own performance. Chances are, you probably think you’re doing better at your resolves than you really are.
But once you’re 100 percent committed, you no longer need to rely on willpower. Your decision has already been made regardless of the circumstances. Saying “No” to anything outside our highest ideals becomes extremely easy. This is living proactively rather than reactively.


4. Be Grateful For What You Already Have
“Both abundance and lack [of abundance] exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend … when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that’s present — love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us [happiness] — the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience heaven on earth.” — Sarah Ban Breathnach


Happiness is as simple as gratitude. Psychological research has found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits:




Physical

Stronger immune systems, Less bothered by aches and pains, Lower blood pressure, Exercise more and take better care of their health, Sleep longer and feel more refreshed upon waking

Psychological
Higher levels of positive emotions, More alert, alive, and awake, More joy and pleasure, More optimism and happinessSocial

More helpful, generous, and compassionate, More forgiving, More outgoing, Feel less lonely and isolatedDespite these benefits, most people ungratefully focus on what they don’t have. As a culture, we have become wasteful and undisciplined consumers. The grass is always greener on the other side. A constant pursuit of having more of the newest and best.
How could you possibly find happiness when you relentlessly want more and never find properly appreciate what you have?
It’s time for you to learn how to be more grateful. Your happiness depends on it.


5. Say “I Love You” More

This may be strange, but if you tell your friends and family you love them, they’ll be blown away. I once knew a Polynesian missionary who told everyone he loved them. It was clear he was sincere.I asked him why he did it. What he told me changed my life. “When I tell people I love them, it not only changes them, but it changes me. Simply by saying the words, I feel more love for that person. I’ve been telling people all around me I love them. They feel treasured by me. Those who know me have come to expect it. When I forget to say it, they miss it.”Said author Harriet Beecher Stowe, “The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.”As my wife, Lauren, tells our children daily, “The secret to happiness is to make everyone around you happy.” By default, you will get the satisfaction of bringing joy to others and their positive energy will come back to you.

6. Have Hobbies Directed Toward Your Dreams

Most people’s hobbies are just hobbies. And that’s okay. It’s good to have an escape from reality. However, research has found that a person can experience leisure in anything. Your work can become your leisure — where it literally rejuvenates you.When I decided where I wanted my life to go, my life vision, I consciously chose hobbies that would best get me there. Some of these hobbies include exercise, reading, writing, journaling, having deep and meaningful conversations, and being in nature. These hobbies refresh and rejuvenate me while simultaneously pushing me toward my dreams.

7. Don’t Wait Til Tomorrow For What You Can Do Today
“When I was around thirteen and my brother ten, Father had promised to take us to the circus. But at lunchtime there was a phone call; some urgent business required his attention downtown. We braced ourselves for disappointment. Then we heard him say [into the phone], ‘No, I won’t be down. It’ll have to wait.’“When he came back to the table, Mother smiled. ‘The circus keeps coming back, you know,’ [she said.]“‘I know,’ said Father. ‘But childhood doesn’t.’” — Arthur GordonHappiness comes from embracing the now. Not letting those moments pass you by. Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism, tells of the story of missing his child being born to be at an “important meeting.” He thought the potential client would be impressed with his commitment to work. Instead, they saw his decision to miss such a monumental moment as a flaw in character. That moment was a turning point for Greg. In fact, it spurred him to change everything about his life. He now removes everything from his life that is not vital and essential.Nothing in life is permanent. Kids grow up. Friends move away. Our loved ones pass on from this life. Let’s live in the present and appreciate the most important things in our lives before it’s too late.

8. Do Something Every Day That Terrifies You
Happy people step out of their comfort zone. You can’t grow if you don’t challenge yourself. And growth is a requirement of happiness. If you’re not growing, you’re slowly decaying and dying.
Elevated risk makes you feel more alive and puts you in a state of flow — which is an optimal conscious state where you feel and perform at your highest level. You become completely absorbed in what you’re doing — pure presence.
When you do things way outside your comfort zone, you naturally raise your conscious level. When you do things that involve high risk, and high probability of failure, you are forced to think differently than you normally do. You are forced to be creative and innovative.
Sadly, most people play life small, safe, and easy. The goals they pursue are logical. There is little element of risk and little requirement for faith.
Consequently, you should take bigger risks in your life. Do things that make you feel alive and activate flow. Of course, with this will come more failures. But if you’re not failing, you’re not growing. Rather than experiencing apathy in life, you’ll experience more of a roller-coaster of emotions. We can never appreciate joy if we’ve never felt sorrow. The more pain and fear we feel, the more we can comprehend and appreciate joy and happiness.


9. Put “The Important” Before “The Urgent”
Stephen Covey says that most people spend their time on urgent but unimportant things. We wake up and immediately check our email. Thus, we put our lives on reactive, rather than proactive mode. After all, email is simply a database of other people’s agendas.
Instead, happy people always put the important stuff first. Not only important, but important and non-urgent. The important stuff includes exercise, reading good books, setting goals, writing in your journal, and spending time with those you love. None of these things are urgent. We could easily put these things off until tomorrow — which is ultimately never. The most happy and successful people in the world spend most of their time on the important.
One of my favorite non-urgent yet important things is my morning routine. I wake up several hours before I start my work day. I meditate and pray to put myself in a space of gratitude and abundance. Then I get my body moving with exercise or yard work. I eat healthy food, read my long-term goals, listen to uplifting content, and do at least one thing to move me toward my goals.


10. Forgo The Good To Pursue The Best
A lot of things in life are good, even great. That doesn’t mean we should do them. In Good to Great, Jim Collins says that once-in-a-lifetime opportunities come up every day. Most people take any great opportunity that comes their way, even if it’s not in alignment with their life vision. Consequently, most people’s lives are moving in a thousand different directions. They aren’t able to consciously move forward in a singular direction.
On the other hand, happy people say no to even amazing opportunities. They will not sacrifice freedom for security. They will not get derailed by distractions — even sexy and attractive distractions.
Very few things in life are best. You can only determine what’s best for you once you know where you want your life to go. Be careful not to continuously engage in good activities and miss the best ones.


Conclusion

Happy people live in the present. They don’t miss the moments that matter most. They are incredibly grateful for all they have. They focus their lives on the important and essential. They forgo the many good opportunities in order to focus on the few best ones.


This article was originally published at the:
Observer.

7 Love
VICTIM OF RAPE..

I don’t know how I managed to, I just knew that I was able to find my way home after fighting against his tight grip. I really can’t explain how devastated I am right now. My fiancé  suddenly became a beast just because I didn’t permit him to have sex with me.

It's not the first time I am experiencing this but the difference is, I got away this time. I thought ken was different. He is a Christian. He speaks in tongues. In fact, he is the youth pastor of his Church—so respected and admired.

Why is all this happening to me, am I cursed? 

What ken did to me this evening brought back the memory of the incident that took place five years ago in my room when I was on campus.

It was not really my fault because I wasn't aware of his plans in the first place. It was like the usual visit to my place after examination, before the end of the semester. I was happy to see him as usual. We were in a relationship, though he wasn't the Church type but he is a good guy and caring at that.

My boyfriend came visiting and I made him comfortable in my abode by preparing his favourite meal and made him feel at home.

The sun began to say farewell to daylight and the twinkle twinkle little stars took over the mantle from day and stood in the gap for itself.

My roommate had gone for vigil as the semester was over. He had never slept in my place before, neither have I in his place even though he stays alone. I was surprised because it's past 8 and he wasn't making plans of leaving anytime soon.

As if reading my mind, he said he won't be leaving as he planned to spend the night with me before going home and moreover, he knows my roommate had gone for vigil. I didn't want to argue.

I adjusted the bedspread in the room and I made sure the door was properly locked, then we went to bed together.

And in the middle of the night, I felt a movement on my body. I thought it was cockroach but I knew it wasn't somehow, then he spoke in the dark, "Baby I want to feel you a little, maybe it will help me sleep as I'm finding it difficult to sleep." When did I turn to lullaby? I said in my mind.

Still struggling to open my mouth and say the word "NO, PLEASE" became a problem for me. While still contemplating how to turn him down without upsetting him, the pleasure I was getting wouldn't allow me. Many thoughts ran through my small mind and I finally said NO... NO... NO... DON'T.

But my plea fell on deaf ears. I got up and turned on the light and behold the TONY I saw was not the guy I knew and loved. He was so strange and different. 

Before I knew what was going on my clothes and body were separated. Until today, I can't explain how that magic happened within seconds. "Please don't", was the song I sang till my roommate came back in the morning.

I ended everything with him and I hated him from that day onward.

Or is it when I visited my friend from the fellowship and how I was raped in his room, I wished I died that day. The looks on his friend's face and neighbors, I picked my shattered self and walked head down to my room.

Or when I went to a remote village for service and the accommodation I was able to get because I was new to the area, how thieves visited that day and raped all the ladies there, of course I was not excluded.

I sometimes asked myself how can one person, I mean one small lady, have 3 rape cases in her life time from different men—beasts I mean.

I intentionally stayed away from men, anything men at all for four years.

Ken changed everything. I mean, he was an angel sent to wipe my sorrow and pains away, at least so I thought.

The testimony from his congregation about him gave me no doubt that he was the one.

TONY blamed me for what he did to me, he blamed me for raping me, imagine that!! For years I was with the guilt that I caused the rape, but I realized it wasn't my fault in any way. 

Ken taught on rape on one of the days I went to church. Yes, I realized I had forgotten God and had to go back to Him. My life was empty, full of bitterness and pain. I needed to be free at least, I want to drop the heavy loads I was carrying daily. 

It was so obvious that something was missing in my life, something no man can give. I resumed going to Church and studying the word.

I was invited to ken's Church and l liked the atmosphere and decided to stay, I decided to pitch my tent there. That was when the announcement of their youth programme was made, I gave it a thought to attend.

After hearing the word from the mouth of an handsome preacher like Ken, I was broken and I rededicated my life to God.

We became friends and finally got into a relationship. I finally thought THIS IS IT. 

I was happy, he was happy too and everything was just fine. I thought he was different because he talked about marriage, the very first guy to tell me he wants to get married to me.

WHY?                 WHY??                 WHY???

All men are after sex! I screamed at myself many times in the bathroom.

Sleep had lost its place in me that day, so I decided to surf my phone.

In the process, I saw a post on Facebook about rape by Louisa Ene Winnie and thought to read through. I then decided to tell my friend about my ordeals. I decided to share my story to let someone know how I have been feeling.

Gift was my roommate from year one until we graduated. She was devoted and humble. I have always admired her—everything about her—but I felt since we were both Christians there is nothing special about her. Notwithstanding, deep down I knew she was a better Christian than I am and a true one at that.

Fortunately for me, we attend the same Church but she is married with two kids and I try to avoid her most times in Church for no particular reason if you ask me or maybe am not being truthful to myself.

I know she somehow knew about me and pastor Ken (as he is fondly called by members).

I phoned her the next day and after exchanging pleasantries I told her I wanted to see her and it was very urgent.

Gift is so caring that she agreed to see me that day and we fixed a venue for our meeting, of course my place.

Immediately I saw my friend I couldn't hold back the tears, as I cried on her soft shoulders.

After some minutes of silence she said pastor Ken told her what happened and he is asking for my forgiveness.

I wasn't surprised because I once introduced him to Gift as my roommate and friend in school. But I didn't think he would tell her what he did to me, oh sorry, what he wanted to do to me.

She told me the same guy who attempted to rape me reported to her that I no longer answer his calls nor respond to his messages. “He must have lost his mind. What is he thinking?" I said and immediately narrated my side of the story to Gift. She just smirked after my long narration. 

“Gift, what’s all this? I expected you to scream and thank God for me but you are smiling instead. Don’t tell me you are for him or is it because he is a pastor?"

“Hey! Calm down” Gift said still smiling. "Do you know enough about this guy before going into a relationship with him?" She asked me. "Off course. I know his family members and a lot about his background. Besides the testimonies I heard about him gave me convictions that he is the one for me. He is a Pastor, he preaches so well and speaks in tongues."

"Babe, that’s not what I mean. Forget his family and his positions now. What do you know about his values? The person he is?"

“Eeeemmm….. he is a Christian, a Pastor.” "Forget all that for now!" Gift replied almost immediately. "I would be realistic with you, Cherish. I do not blame your ex boyfriends if not you. How could you be so insensitive that you are making the same mistake again?" 

"Gift tell me what you know, I want to be married like you and have a family."

"Cherish, in choosing a partner, if your values are not known and considered then you are planting banana peels on your way because the relationship might never result in marriage and even if it does the marriage have high chances of being faulty. You know why? Value systems is key to building solid relationships."

"This is why friendship should be the foundation of every boy and girl relationship. It is during the friendship stage that you get to discover his or her values like, his stand on purity, his goals, his priorities and many more and whether they align with yours or not. Then you get to know if he or she is someone you can go into a relationship with. Relationship is by choice just like friendship not by force or by pressure."

“Gift, how do I know someone’s values? After all I am not a witch.” "You ask questions dear. You need to ask questions concerning what you want to know. You don’t keep mute and be assuming that since he says he is a Christian or a Pastor and he goes to church he is for sexual purity. It doesn’t work that way."

"Pastors are humans too, though expectations are much of them but remember they are humans and thus not excluded from mistakes. They are men and women with blood flowing in their veins."

"You could ask like this, what is your view about sexual abstinence until marriage? What are your priorities?

I won't dispute the fact that every guy irrespective of who they are and what office they occupy wants just one thing in a relationship. Which is SEX, SEX and SEX!  Yes. I can say that again and again. They want it now, soon or later after marriage. What depicts their values is when they want it. 

It is now your choice to choose the one you want among them. That is why questioning is very vital before accepting a relationship and during the relationship before marriage is finally considered.

The habit of not asking questions has brought marriages to an end. Ask questions. It will save you from unnecessary heartbreaks, like this. Thank God you were able to escape. 

Another thing you should know, you shouldn't be visiting him alone especially in his house, except family house, and ensure people are around when you're together. If you must go alone make sure it is an open place like eateries or gardens, places where people are. Leave no room for temptation at all.

In all I have said forgive him but mind you the decision is still yours to make, I won't tell you to go back to him or not, with all I have said make your conclusion. Of course, ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Mind you, If your relationship with God is not solid, your relationship with the man will fail. 

Let no one tell you otherwise, Sex isn't part of a relationship personal terms and agreement. It is part of marriage covenant."

I wanted telling her about the other two rape cases that happened to me but I think I know what to do now, heal properly with the help of the Holy Spirit, forgive my offenders including Ken and solidify my relationship with God. 

Enough of keeping to myself, it's time to grow and glow with God's children. I saw lots of impactful articles on Winnie Ene Louisa's timeline for singles, it's time to read them up and learn.

Of course I'm not going back to ken but I must forgive him and move on.

Thanks so much Gift, I wish I had spoken to you long time ago just maybe things wouldn't be like this, but I'm glad to know now.

We are so many, Cherish, out there dying in silent pain. Some have been so consumed with self guilt that suicide was their only escape. 

Some blame their self for crimes that wasn't their fault that low self-esteem is now their name.

Jesus is the solution to all situation.

I'm Winnie making impact.

I say NO to rape.

I say NO to suicide.

Yes to freedom in  Christ.

I help singles lead godly healthy relationship.

I Write, Speak and Advocate.

©Winnie Ene Louisa

#Saynotorape
#saynotosexualabuse
#saynotosuicide

23 Love
2 Share

VICTIM OF RAPE..

I don’t know how I managed to, I just knew that I was able to find my way home after fighting against his tight grip. I really can’t explain how devastated I am right now. My fiancé suddenly became a beast just because I didn’t permit him to have sex with me.

It's not the first time I am experiencing this but the difference is, I got away this time. I thought ken was different. He is a Christian. He speaks in tongues. In fact, he is the youth pastor of his Church—so respected and admired.

Why is all this happening to me, am I cursed?

What ken did to me this evening brought back the memory of the incident that took place five years ago in my room when I was on campus.

It was not really my fault because I wasn't aware of his plans in the first place. It was like the usual visit to my place after examination, before the end of the semester. I was happy to see him as usual. We were in a relationship, though he wasn't the Church type but he is a good guy and caring at that.

My boyfriend came visiting and I made him comfortable in my abode by preparing his favourite meal and made him feel at home.

The sun began to say farewell to daylight and the twinkle twinkle little stars took over the mantle from day and stood in the gap for itself.

My roommate had gone for vigil as the semester was over. He had never slept in my place before, neither have I in his place even though he stays alone. I was surprised because it's past 8 and he wasn't making plans of leaving anytime soon.

As if reading my mind, he said he won't be leaving as he planned to spend the night with me before going home and moreover, he knows my roommate had gone for vigil. I didn't want to argue.

I adjusted the bedspread in the room and I made sure the door was properly locked, then we went to bed together.

And in the middle of the night, I felt a movement on my body. I thought it was cockroach but I knew it wasn't somehow, then he spoke in the dark, "Baby I want to feel you a little, maybe it will help me sleep as I'm finding it difficult to sleep." When did I turn to lullaby? I said in my mind.

Still struggling to open my mouth and say the word "NO, PLEASE" became a problem for me. While still contemplating how to turn him down without upsetting him, the pleasure I was getting wouldn't allow me. Many thoughts ran through my small mind and I finally said NO... NO... NO... DON'T.

But my plea fell on deaf ears. I got up and turned on the light and behold the TONY I saw was not the guy I knew and loved. He was so strange and different.

Before I knew what was going on my clothes and body were separated. Until today, I can't explain how that magic happened within seconds. "Please don't", was the song I sang till my roommate came back in the morning.

I ended everything with him and I hated him from that day onward.

Or is it when I visited my friend from the fellowship and how I was raped in his room, I wished I died that day. The looks on his friend's face and neighbors, I picked my shattered self and walked head down to my room.

Or when I went to a remote village for service and the accommodation I was able to get because I was new to the area, how thieves visited that day and raped all the ladies there, of course I was not excluded.

I sometimes asked myself how can one person, I mean one small lady, have 3 rape cases in her life time from different men—beasts I mean.

I intentionally stayed away from men, anything men at all for four years.

Ken changed everything. I mean, he was an angel sent to wipe my sorrow and pains away, at least so I thought.

The testimony from his congregation about him gave me no doubt that he was the one.

TONY blamed me for what he did to me, he blamed me for raping me, imagine that!! For years I was with the guilt that I caused the rape, but I realized it wasn't my fault in any way.

Ken taught on rape on one of the days I went to church. Yes, I realized I had forgotten God and had to go back to Him. My life was empty, full of bitterness and pain. I needed to be free at least, I want to drop the heavy loads I was carrying daily.

It was so obvious that something was missing in my life, something no man can give. I resumed going to Church and studying the word.

I was invited to ken's Church and l liked the atmosphere and decided to stay, I decided to pitch my tent there. That was when the announcement of their youth programme was made, I gave it a thought to attend.

After hearing the word from the mouth of an handsome preacher like Ken, I was broken and I rededicated my life to God.

We became friends and finally got into a relationship. I finally thought THIS IS IT.

I was happy, he was happy too and everything was just fine. I thought he was different because he talked about marriage, the very first guy to tell me he wants to get married to me.

WHY? WHY?? WHY???

All men are after sex! I screamed at myself many times in the bathroom.

Sleep had lost its place in me that day, so I decided to surf my phone.

In the process, I saw a post on Facebook about rape by Louisa Ene Winnie and thought to read through. I then decided to tell my friend about my ordeals. I decided to share my story to let someone know how I have been feeling.

Gift was my roommate from year one until we graduated. She was devoted and humble. I have always admired her—everything about her—but I felt since we were both Christians there is nothing special about her. Notwithstanding, deep down I knew she was a better Christian than I am and a true one at that.

Fortunately for me, we attend the same Church but she is married with two kids and I try to avoid her most times in Church for no particular reason if you ask me or maybe am not being truthful to myself.

I know she somehow knew about me and pastor Ken (as he is fondly called by members).

I phoned her the next day and after exchanging pleasantries I told her I wanted to see her and it was very urgent.

Gift is so caring that she agreed to see me that day and we fixed a venue for our meeting, of course my place.

Immediately I saw my friend I couldn't hold back the tears, as I cried on her soft shoulders.

After some minutes of silence she said pastor Ken told her what happened and he is asking for my forgiveness.

I wasn't surprised because I once introduced him to Gift as my roommate and friend in school. But I didn't think he would tell her what he did to me, oh sorry, what he wanted to do to me.

She told me the same guy who attempted to rape me reported to her that I no longer answer his calls nor respond to his messages. “He must have lost his mind. What is he thinking?" I said and immediately narrated my side of the story to Gift. She just smirked after my long narration.

“Gift, what’s all this? I expected you to scream and thank God for me but you are smiling instead. Don’t tell me you are for him or is it because he is a pastor?"

“Hey! Calm down” Gift said still smiling. "Do you know enough about this guy before going into a relationship with him?" She asked me. "Off course. I know his family members and a lot about his background. Besides the testimonies I heard about him gave me convictions that he is the one for me. He is a Pastor, he preaches so well and speaks in tongues."

"Babe, that’s not what I mean. Forget his family and his positions now. What do you know about his values? The person he is?"

“Eeeemmm….. he is a Christian, a Pastor.” "Forget all that for now!" Gift replied almost immediately. "I would be realistic with you, Cherish. I do not blame your ex boyfriends if not you. How could you be so insensitive that you are making the same mistake again?"

"Gift tell me what you know, I want to be married like you and have a family."

"Cherish, in choosing a partner, if your values are not known and considered then you are planting banana peels on your way because the relationship might never result in marriage and even if it does the marriage have high chances of being faulty. You know why? Value systems is key to building solid relationships."

"This is why friendship should be the foundation of every boy and girl relationship. It is during the friendship stage that you get to discover his or her values like, his stand on purity, his goals, his priorities and many more and whether they align with yours or not. Then you get to know if he or she is someone you can go into a relationship with. Relationship is by choice just like friendship not by force or by pressure."

“Gift, how do I know someone’s values? After all I am not a witch.” "You ask questions dear. You need to ask questions concerning what you want to know. You don’t keep mute and be assuming that since he says he is a Christian or a Pastor and he goes to church he is for sexual purity. It doesn’t work that way."

"Pastors are humans too, though expectations are much of them but remember they are humans and thus not excluded from mistakes. They are men and women with blood flowing in their veins."

"You could ask like this, what is your view about sexual abstinence until marriage? What are your priorities?

I won't dispute the fact that every guy irrespective of who they are and what office they occupy wants just one thing in a relationship. Which is SEX, SEX and SEX! Yes. I can say that again and again. They want it now, soon or later after marriage. What depicts their values is when they want it.

It is now your choice to choose the one you want among them. That is why questioning is very vital before accepting a relationship and during the relationship before marriage is finally considered.

The habit of not asking questions has brought marriages to an end. Ask questions. It will save you from unnecessary heartbreaks, like this. Thank God you were able to escape.

Another thing you should know, you shouldn't be visiting him alone especially in his house, except family house, and ensure people are around when you're together. If you must go alone make sure it is an open place like eateries or gardens, places where people are. Leave no room for temptation at all.

In all I have said forgive him but mind you the decision is still yours to make, I won't tell you to go back to him or not, with all I have said make your conclusion. Of course, ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Mind you, If your relationship with God is not solid, your relationship with the man will fail.

Let no one tell you otherwise, Sex isn't part of a relationship personal terms and agreement. It is part of marriage covenant."

I wanted telling her about the other two rape cases that happened to me but I think I know what to do now, heal properly with the help of the Holy Spirit, forgive my offenders including Ken and solidify my relationship with God.

Enough of keeping to myself, it's time to grow and glow with God's children. I saw lots of impactful articles on Winnie Ene Louisa's timeline for singles, it's time to read them up and learn.

Of course I'm not going back to ken but I must forgive him and move on.

Thanks so much Gift, I wish I had spoken to you long time ago just maybe things wouldn't be like this, but I'm glad to know now.

We are so many, Cherish, out there dying in silent pain. Some have been so consumed with self guilt that suicide was their only escape.

Some blame their self for crimes that wasn't their fault that low self-esteem is now their name.

Jesus is the solution to all situation.

I'm Winnie making impact.

I say NO to rape.

I say NO to suicide.

Yes to freedom in Christ.

I help singles lead godly healthy relationship.

I Write, Speak and Advocate.

©Winnie Ene Louisa

3 Love
I have goals .
Even my goals have goals ,
 and those goals have goals of having goals.

😂😂😂😂😂😂🔥🔥🔥

15 Love

7 Secret Tips to Make Your Relationship Last Longer
There is no elaborate strategy or blueprint to the perfect relationship. In all honestly, all relationships are messy, and they all come with their own share of drama. It is your personal decision to make about whether you chose to work through it, or drop it completely. Make this decision as early in the relationship as possible, this will ensure that minimum damage is caused.
Here are a few secret (but seemingly simple) tips to a long lasting relationship:
1.) Be spontaneous.

Source
At no point in a relationship, should you give up. Keep them on their toes and always try to surprise them. Take random trips, plan crazy dates and take their breath away at every chance you get. Male or female, it is your duty to keep each other happy and interested throughout the relationship. If it’s worth it, put in the effort.
2.) Communicate.

Source
Don’t bottle up your feelings. This might work in the short term, but eventually, you will implode and cause more drama than you can imagine. Tell them if something bothers you, and more importantly if something makes you happy. This will ensure that they know what to avoid doing, and what to do to make your day better.
3.) Hook up.

Source
Don’t underestimate the power of some good between the sheets time. While you should be careful to prevent this from becoming all you do in your relationship, it is important to maintain a healthy balance. Not only is it a great stressbuster, it also gives you the opportunity to try out new and interesting things here too.
4.) Don’t lie.

Source
White lies to prevent drama and hurt are excusable – but do not make it a habit. When you find yourself lying about serious issues, or trying to cover up for yourself, you know you’ve taken it too far. Honesty is of utmost importance in a relationship. Without it, you lose your trust and then there’s no way to save whatever you may have with them.
5.) Don’t overshare.

Source
Don’t talk about sex with your ex, don’t constantly compare them to your past and definitely avoid criticizing them too much. Somethings must be kept to yourself, but do not use this as an excuse to be dishonest and hide the truth from them either.
6.) Be supportive.

Source
Support their dreams. While it is important for you to keep them sane and grounded, do not abuse this power by holding them back. Let them live their lives and fulfil their goals. Your job as their partner is to build them up and help them achieve everything they want. Be sure that this will always be reciprocated.
7.) Don't Judge

Source
Be the person they can come to with their problems. If they’re constantly worried about what you will think of them, or if you will judge them, they will find someone else to confide in. Provide them with a safe and secure environment in which they can share their deepest insecurities and feelings. This will bind you together in an unbreakable hold.


Source:
http://www.thatscoop.com/article/gabyextross/tips-relationship

3 Love

The Secret to Happiness Is 10 Specific Behaviors

Despite happiness being a primary human motivation, only one in three Americans say they’re very happy.
Several years ago in an interview with Conan O’Brien, Louis C. K. tells of flying on a newly equipped Wi-Fi airplane. He was amazed by the new technology. Until, during the flight, the Wi-Fi went down. Immediately, the man next to him became extremely upset. “As though the world owes this man something he only knew existed 10 seconds ago.”
Louis C. K. continues by describing people’s absurd frustrations with flying in general. People complain about it all the time “It was the worst day of my life! It took 20 minutes to board! We had to sit on the runway for 40 minutes!”
We hear complaints like these all the time. As if we’ve forgotten how incredible it is that humans can fly at all.
How are we so quick to take for granted the remarkable things going on in life?
Why is it so easy to complain?
Why do we focus on the negative?
Everything is amazing and nobody is happy.
However, happiness can easily be achieved even without the brilliant advances in the world.
Rather than being reactive to what’s going on around us, happy people take control of their lives and emotions. If you are unhappy with your life, who or what else can you blame than yourself? And if you can blame someone or something else, how is blame going to make your life any better?
Bad stuff happens to everyone. But life isn’t about what happens to you. It’s about how you proactively respond.
The following 10 behaviors, if applied, will change your life. Let me be clear, if you do these things, you will be an incredibly happy person.


1. Let Go Of The Need For Specific Outcomes
Not everything in life goes exactly how we plan. There are setbacks. Stuff happens. We mess up. Over-obsessing and basing happiness on specific outcomes leads to misery. Jeremy Piven, the famous actor, was recently interviewed by Success Magazine. During the interview, he mentioned that, as an actor, the only way to work is to go out and audition for specific roles.The challenge most actors/actresses face is that they get in their own way. It doesn’t matter how much homework they’ve done. If they’re too tied to a specific result, they can’t be present in the moment. They can’t truly perform their art. They come off as desperate. They get in their own way. Their performance isn’t what it could have been.Jeremy said that when he quit worrying about a specific result, he was able to be present during his auditions. He was able to be completely who he wanted to be. He wasn’t trying to be what he thought others wanted him to be. He performed his art.If he didn’t get the gig, either they didn’t get it or it just wasn’t the right fit. So he moves on to the next. In this way, he’s able to get the jobs he’s supposed to have. He’s not just trying to get anything he can get.
2. Define Your Own Success And Happiness
“Be everything to everybody and you’ll be nothing for yourself.” — John Rushton


No two human beings are the same. So why should we have one standard of success? Seeking society’s standard of success is an endless rat-race. There will always be someone better than you. You’ll never have the time to do everything.Instead, you recognize that every decision has opportunity cost. When you choose one thing, you simultaneously don’t choose several others. And that’s okay. Actually, it’s beautiful because we get to choose our ultimate ideal. We must define success, wealth, and happiness in our own terms because if we don’t, society will for us — and we will always fall short. We’ll always be left wanting. We’ll always be stuck comparing ourselves and competing with other people. Our lives will be an endless race for the next best thing. We’ll never experience contentment.
3. Commit 100 Percent To The Things That Make You Happy
“Many of us have convinced ourselves that we are able to break our own personal rules “just this once.” In our minds, we can justify these small choices. None of those things, when they first happen, feels like a life-changing decision. The marginal costs are almost always low. But each of those decisions can roll up into a much bigger picture, turning you into the kind of person you never wanted to be.” — Clayton Christensen
People are really good at self-sabotage. We consistently behave in ways that contradict our goals and ideals. This is incongruence. As Mahatma Gandhi has said, “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” The smaller the gap between what you should do, and what you actually do — the happier you will be.
Hence, Clayton Christensen says 100 percent commitment is easier than 98 percent commitment. When you fully commit to something, the decision has been made. Consequently, regarding that thing, all future decisions have been made.
Unless you’re committed 100 percent, you will always be a victim to external circumstances. By relying on willpower, you’ll crumble more often than you think. Research has found that people over-inflate their own performance. Chances are, you probably think you’re doing better at your resolves than you really are.
But once you’re 100 percent committed, you no longer need to rely on willpower. Your decision has already been made regardless of the circumstances. Saying “No” to anything outside our highest ideals becomes extremely easy. This is living proactively rather than reactively.


4. Be Grateful For What You Already Have
“Both abundance and lack [of abundance] exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend … when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that’s present — love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us [happiness] — the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience heaven on earth.” — Sarah Ban Breathnach


Happiness is as simple as gratitude. Psychological research has found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits:




Physical

Stronger immune systems, Less bothered by aches and pains, Lower blood pressure, Exercise more and take better care of their health, Sleep longer and feel more refreshed upon waking

Psychological
Higher levels of positive emotions, More alert, alive, and awake, More joy and pleasure, More optimism and happinessSocial

More helpful, generous, and compassionate, More forgiving, More outgoing, Feel less lonely and isolatedDespite these benefits, most people ungratefully focus on what they don’t have. As a culture, we have become wasteful and undisciplined consumers. The grass is always greener on the other side. A constant pursuit of having more of the newest and best.
How could you possibly find happiness when you relentlessly want more and never find properly appreciate what you have?
It’s time for you to learn how to be more grateful. Your happiness depends on it.


5. Say “I Love You” More

This may be strange, but if you tell your friends and family you love them, they’ll be blown away. I once knew a Polynesian missionary who told everyone he loved them. It was clear he was sincere.I asked him why he did it. What he told me changed my life. “When I tell people I love them, it not only changes them, but it changes me. Simply by saying the words, I feel more love for that person. I’ve been telling people all around me I love them. They feel treasured by me. Those who know me have come to expect it. When I forget to say it, they miss it.”Said author Harriet Beecher Stowe, “The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.”As my wife, Lauren, tells our children daily, “The secret to happiness is to make everyone around you happy.” By default, you will get the satisfaction of bringing joy to others and their positive energy will come back to you.

6. Have Hobbies Directed Toward Your Dreams

Most people’s hobbies are just hobbies. And that’s okay. It’s good to have an escape from reality. However, research has found that a person can experience leisure in anything. Your work can become your leisure — where it literally rejuvenates you.When I decided where I wanted my life to go, my life vision, I consciously chose hobbies that would best get me there. Some of these hobbies include exercise, reading, writing, journaling, having deep and meaningful conversations, and being in nature. These hobbies refresh and rejuvenate me while simultaneously pushing me toward my dreams.

7. Don’t Wait Til Tomorrow For What You Can Do Today
“When I was around thirteen and my brother ten, Father had promised to take us to the circus. But at lunchtime there was a phone call; some urgent business required his attention downtown. We braced ourselves for disappointment. Then we heard him say [into the phone], ‘No, I won’t be down. It’ll have to wait.’“When he came back to the table, Mother smiled. ‘The circus keeps coming back, you know,’ [she said.]“‘I know,’ said Father. ‘But childhood doesn’t.’” — Arthur GordonHappiness comes from embracing the now. Not letting those moments pass you by. Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism, tells of the story of missing his child being born to be at an “important meeting.” He thought the potential client would be impressed with his commitment to work. Instead, they saw his decision to miss such a monumental moment as a flaw in character. That moment was a turning point for Greg. In fact, it spurred him to change everything about his life. He now removes everything from his life that is not vital and essential.Nothing in life is permanent. Kids grow up. Friends move away. Our loved ones pass on from this life. Let’s live in the present and appreciate the most important things in our lives before it’s too late.

8. Do Something Every Day That Terrifies You
Happy people step out of their comfort zone. You can’t grow if you don’t challenge yourself. And growth is a requirement of happiness. If you’re not growing, you’re slowly decaying and dying.
Elevated risk makes you feel more alive and puts you in a state of flow — which is an optimal conscious state where you feel and perform at your highest level. You become completely absorbed in what you’re doing — pure presence.
When you do things way outside your comfort zone, you naturally raise your conscious level. When you do things that involve high risk, and high probability of failure, you are forced to think differently than you normally do. You are forced to be creative and innovative.
Sadly, most people play life small, safe, and easy. The goals they pursue are logical. There is little element of risk and little requirement for faith.
Consequently, you should take bigger risks in your life. Do things that make you feel alive and activate flow. Of course, with this will come more failures. But if you’re not failing, you’re not growing. Rather than experiencing apathy in life, you’ll experience more of a roller-coaster of emotions. We can never appreciate joy if we’ve never felt sorrow. The more pain and fear we feel, the more we can comprehend and appreciate joy and happiness.


9. Put “The Important” Before “The Urgent”
Stephen Covey says that most people spend their time on urgent but unimportant things. We wake up and immediately check our email. Thus, we put our lives on reactive, rather than proactive mode. After all, email is simply a database of other people’s agendas.
Instead, happy people always put the important stuff first. Not only important, but important and non-urgent. The important stuff includes exercise, reading good books, setting goals, writing in your journal, and spending time with those you love. None of these things are urgent. We could easily put these things off until tomorrow — which is ultimately never. The most happy and successful people in the world spend most of their time on the important.
One of my favorite non-urgent yet important things is my morning routine. I wake up several hours before I start my work day. I meditate and pray to put myself in a space of gratitude and abundance. Then I get my body moving with exercise or yard work. I eat healthy food, read my long-term goals, listen to uplifting content, and do at least one thing to move me toward my goals.


10. Forgo The Good To Pursue The Best
A lot of things in life are good, even great. That doesn’t mean we should do them. In Good to Great, Jim Collins says that once-in-a-lifetime opportunities come up every day. Most people take any great opportunity that comes their way, even if it’s not in alignment with their life vision. Consequently, most people’s lives are moving in a thousand different directions. They aren’t able to consciously move forward in a singular direction.
On the other hand, happy people say no to even amazing opportunities. They will not sacrifice freedom for security. They will not get derailed by distractions — even sexy and attractive distractions.
Very few things in life are best. You can only determine what’s best for you once you know where you want your life to go. Be careful not to continuously engage in good activities and miss the best ones.


Conclusion

Happy people live in the present. They don’t miss the moments that matter most. They are incredibly grateful for all they have. They focus their lives on the important and essential. They forgo the many good opportunities in order to focus on the few best ones.


This article was originally published at the:
Observer.

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