July 15, 2017

Sometimes the REALness of life tackles you like a herd of massive NFL football players, and you lie helplessly dogpiled beneath them. That’s pretty close to my state of mind this past week. Of course, on this particular week, I (Tara) forgot to wear my “football helmet,” and I paid for it. When I get this way, I begin to hyper-reflect. If you’re unsure of that term, check out my blog here that peeks into the TMM brain aka the Highly Reflective One.

As I reflected on all sorts of current TMM circumstances, I felt myself seeping into a dark place. Why? Because, the mind is a powerful, complex organ. In fact, it’s essentially the boss of our bodies; it controls everything! It can also wire and rewire itself based on what we feed it. For example, when I dwelt on one negative thought, it created a synapse-connection in my mind. Then, negativity doesn’t stop there. You see these types of thoughts are villains in my brain. So, they ran around tempting my STRONG positive synapse-connections to give way to another negative thought, and another and another, until a massive web of negativity consumed my thought-processing compartment. I was so disappointed in myself. In fact, the result was pitiful, to say the least. Within a very short amount of time, my mind was rewired with invalidating thoughts, a sense of inadequacy, frustration overload and pretty much a feeling of absolute worthlessness. How did I allow this to happen? Why? It’s that thing called being a REAL human. However, this is when I needed a REAL friend. So, I messaged my friend, Tisha. She’s my #SoulSister! In the valley or on the mountain top, this girl has my back.

In fact, if you don’t follow Tisha Richmond on Twitter, do so now by clicking here. Also, you would do yourself well to subscribe to her blog; she’s an incredibly talented, motivating educator. You’ll not be disappointed! In fact, her culinary class IS Master Chef for students! Seriously, if you want to be inspired, follow my girl!

So, after I had rambled on for what seemed like forever, she gave me some great advice.

REAL Talk – Friend to Friend

As I was talking with Tara, I could completely relate! I said to my friend, “We all find ourselves in that place of negativity at times. I know I do! Life is hard and full of unexpected twists, turns and bumps along the way. Ya know, when I find myself in that deep, dark place it always helps to look back at all of the pivotal events that have helped shape and bring me to where I’m at today.  Sometimes those events are positive, and sometimes they are negative.  Regardless, they’ve added to my story and if nothing else, made me stronger. Girl, look around you, reflect on the positive that is happening in your life….so many amazing things! So reflecting on those times, allows me to shift my focus from the negative of my current circumstance to all that I have to be grateful for.”

Listening to Tisha’s input grounded me (Tara) and helped me “rewire” my brain by breaking some of the newly formed negative synapse-connections and begin replacing them with hopeful ones. I realized at this moment (and voiced it to Tisha)–gratefulness is missing in my life and spirit. That’s my problem! I need to look around and realize all of the wonderful things happening in my life of which I should be grateful. In other words, I need to redesign my thought process aka get back to the REAL TMM!

Tisha’s Idea!

As I was sharing this with Tara, an idea popped into my head! “Hey, Tara! What if you kept a 30-day Gratitude Journal?!  Each day you could write about one thing to be grateful for to help climb out of this negativity pit!”


Another idea hit me upside the head that perfectly fit my dear soul sister! “Tara, what about creating #GratitudeSnaps!  Instead of a journal, you could take a daily pic of something you are grateful for, make a snap out of it, and then share it out via social media! This would allow you to do what you love “create digitally” AND focus on the positives in your life! Just as #BookSnaps help us connect and draw meaning from the text, #GratitudeSnaps could help connect with the positive that is in our lives in a meaningful way.”

Tara’s Take On the Idea and The Challenge

Instantly, I loved the idea. Of course, as Tisha said, it’s using what I love, my passion of creating digitally and helping me to rewire my mindset. There is so much neuroscience to explain why this works beautifully for not only adults but students (and all humans), but I’ll not bore you with all of the details. However, as educators, it’s vital that we try this method of counseling. It’s more than talking to someone; it’s tapping into their passions and strengths to help them overcome. Beautifully done, Tisha. That’s REAL friendship and REAL mentoring. You’re the best!

I’m guessing I’m not the only person in the world that might benefit from finding something to be grateful for each day and snapping it out. In fact, I do not want gratitude to simply hide in my Snap Story–let’s launch this EDUforce!

PLN peeps, have something to be grateful for?

Think you might snap it out each day and share it via Twitter or other social media platforms using the hashtag #GratitudeSnaps?

It’s that easy. Let’s do this thing!

Tisha, take it away.


Ok, Tara, I’m pumped!

PLN peeps,

So here’s the challenge:

Focus each day on one thing you are grateful for.  It could be a thing, a person, a feeling….it’s personal to you!

• Take a picture with your phone and upload to SnapChat. Or, Snap it straight from the app. Or, use any picture app to create your #GratitudeSnaps. (We will be using SnapChat.)

• Create a Gratitude Snap by connecting it to the positive in your life in a meaningful way.  Add pics, text, anything you choose.

• Post it to Twitter including #GratitudeSnaps

Thank you, my friend.

Are you ready to storm the world with a POSITIVE #GratitudeSnaps force? I (Tara) am!

Let’s begin our 30-days of #GratitudeSnaps on July 15, 2017!

The world has plenty of negativity, let’s spread gratitude! We have so much of which to be thankful.


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If you’d like to follow my (Tara’s) 30-Day #GratitudeSnaps  Challenge, click the Padlet below.

Padlet is free and is a great way to curate your #BookSnaps, or, in this case, #GratitudeSnaps.  

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