Category: Learning

Lucy Movie Review: Women Accessing Their True Potential

I went to see the movie Lucy on opening weekend. This is one of the first movies in a very long time that I’ve supported in the theatre because I really like the premise — unlocking the full potential of your brain.

But even moreso I loved the fact that this is the first mainstream movie I’ve seen in a while where the woman is the main character and isn’t a) oversexualized or b) desperately looking for love. She’s highlighted solely for using her brain.

Now Scarlett Johansson’s character may have been the classic girl “looking for love in all the wrong places” at the very beginning, but as soon as she became more knowledgeable she realized that there were more important things to think about besides finding a man. She used her sexuality to get what she wanted in a couple of cases, but suggestively and not gratuitously.

I try to avoid movies, shows and music where women are objectified and used for their bodies, because I believe women are capable of SO much more. We’ve been told by society that our best assets are on the outside, which is why so many women settle on careers and goals that require them to use their bodies for profit. We grow up with that message — that our bodies and looks are all that matters. (Men learn that as well, which is why they are so focused on looks when choosing a mate.)

Meanwhile men are free and open to any pursuit they can dream of, whether it’s working as a high paid computer programmer, a top salesperson or traveling the world making business partnerships. The social media site Twitter recently released their diversity report and found that their workforce (most techies) is 90% men!

This isn’t a coincidence, this is socialization. Women and girls are being told that they aren’t smart enough to pursue brain-bending jobs like IT or programming.

Sexual Liberation or Exploitation?
Everywhere you turn in our modern society you can find a woman’s body parts on display, whether it’s a music video or a magazine cover. Some call it sexual liberation or empowerment, but for something to be truly liberating or empowering don’t we have to look at the motivation behind it?

When we see a woman half-naked on the cover of magazine, what is the motivation behind it?

– to attract attention of men
– to make another woman jealous of that woman and insecure about her own body so that she’ll try to change herself
– most of all, to make money for the magazine



Are those aims empowering and liberating and if so, to WHOM?

Certainly not women.

The Movie Lucy Has Empowering Themes
In one scene of the movie Lucy, she is underestimated by a large group of men who assume they will get rid of her without a problem. She’s just a “mere” woman after all. Boy were they wrong, and she didn’t even have to break a nail.

It makes me think of how much we women could change this world for the better if more of us chose to unlock our potential, not by using our bodies but by utilizing more of our brain power.

So this is why I really appreciate a movie like Lucy and was happy to support it opening weekend. One complaint: it was too short! I wanted it to delve deeper into the secrets of our brains. I just may see it again to catch a few things I may have missed.

And I can only hope that it’s successful enough to prompt more writers and producers to create empowering films like Lucy for young girls and women to consume.

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular dating advice book for women entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

What Gives Your Life Meaning? (Questions to Ask Ourselves)

I believe that we all have to have something or someone worth living for — a goal, dream, aspiration or person who makes waking up every morning, bright and early, worthwhile.

Many people fall into depression or cycles of hopelessness because they don’t feel as if there’s anything or anyone worth living for. But I think each of us does have a purpose for being here, even if it isn’t immediately obvious.

If you’ve been feeling a bit down lately or like you don’t have much of a purpose in life, it may be that a drastic change has to happen in your life so that you can finally see it. And you’re the only one who can initiate that change — we all have a choice.

Here are a few motivators that keep many of us pushing forward, even when the road gets rough.

Children
Watching your kids grow from little babies to adults is one of the most satisfying experiences for many women. Then you get to see the whole process continue when you become a grandparent and then a great grandparent. Children are a major motivator for women — they make life full, rich and meaningful.

A Life Partner
In many cases, a person holds onto life tightly because she has a partner who is counting on her (and vice versa). When you have a life partner, a soul mate, a best friend, you want to cherish every moment with that person. They make life special and interesting.

A Cause
Some people find their purpose in a cause. There’s a saying that if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything. This cause could be charitable (like volunteer work), political, religious, cultural or motivational in nature. It’s something that you’re passionate about. When you feel like you’re making changes in this world, even in very small ways, it gives you a spring in your step, a shot of espresso in your coffee to keep you motivated each day.

A Hobby or Creative Distraction
It can be so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that we stop taking time to ourselves to do what we really enjoy. This is a shame because in many cases, a hobby or distraction can be the one thing that adds a spice to your life when you feel that there’s not much else.

What about music? Maybe an instrument like the guitar? Maybe singing for fun?

Tae Kwon Do – learn how to kick some butt.



Youtube tutorials – teach others how to do stuff you know a whole lot about.

What you may find by exploring your hobbies is that people will eventually start to follow you and look to your for guidance and inspiration. That alone is something to inspire YOU to live life to its fullest and keep progressing.

A Dream
Some motivational speakers talk about the importance of living in the “now.” They say that we should focus on today and ignore the past and future. But I think there is value in thinking about the future, at least in terms of pursuing a dream or goal. When you have a goal in mind, whether it is to start your own company or to travel the world, it helps keep you positive and motivated about living your day to day life. Each day is a progression toward that goal, but the key is to have a plan that you’re implementing each day, little by little, so that it will actually become real.

First Things First
After much personal reflection, I think that life is about growing and creating. We’re here to grow, create, innovate and evolve into something even grander. Each of us can play a significant role in that process while we’re here, but we first have to pinpoint why we’re here and what motivates us to keep going in the first place.

What gives your life meaning?

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

An Audiobook Changed My Life

The story of how I got through a deep depression by listening to an audiobook.

All that I could see ahead was hopelessness, despair and unhappiness. My best friend and fiancé was gone from the earth. I was all alone. I didn’t receive any texts or calls from anyone for weeks. My money wasn’t right. I wasn’t fulfilled and I had abandoned all of my projects. I didn’t know what to do with myself other than just… exist. Get through this tedious, miserable life.

And on top of all of that, I had to do yard work that morning. I frowned at my yard full of calf-high weeds, with nothing but a low-power weed whacker in my hand (the lawn mower wouldn’t start up that morning of course).

My yard was representative of the clutter and chaos that was going on in my mind.

An Audiobook Opened My Eyes

That morning, I decided I would listen to something other than my usual music while I tackled those weeds. I turned on a motivational audiobook and got to work.

The more I listened to the words (the author’s gentle voice with her delightful Australian accent, the impeccable production and sound effects) the less troubled I was about those weeds. I whacked my way through them with ease. Before I knew it, I was done, smiling, and I even put a special thought and blessing on my lawn so that it would start growing regular green grass again. The book taught me that. Something had sparked inside of me.

From that point on audiobooks became my best friends. I listened to at least one per day, and before I knew it my life started to change right before my eyes. Almost all of the audiobooks I listened to have the same general theme — change the way you think about things if you want to improve your life. Also, we alone have the power to create our own realities.

Convenient, Simple and a Fast Turnaround

One of the benefits of audiobooks as opposed to printed books is that you can listen to them when you’re doing other things, like cooking, driving, working out or cutting down a jungle of weeds as I was doing that day.



Another is that nowadays you don’t have to fumble around with CDs. I can listen to my audio books on my cellphone with a pair of headphones thanks to Audible, iTunes and other services. It’s simple and to the point — just download and listen.

An On-Demand Therapist

I also believe that the message that an author is trying to convey sinks in quicker when she just says it to you. It’s kind of like talking to a therapist. It also lasts longer in your mind. It comes back to you when you’re involved with other things.

My transformation happened in two months. Seriously. I hit the ground running — I wrote and published two books, started blogging and took back up writing professionally. Inspired by the audiobook I listened to that morning when I was doing yard work, I created an audio form of my popular dating advice guide Let Him Chase You. Later I published Survive, Live or Thrive?

Pushing Forward

I may have my tough days here and there, but they are few and far between. They’re minor to me now. I have learned how to properly approach life’s obstacles and be thankful for my blessings. My mind is made up.

So what about you? Which audiobook will be the one that changes your life?

Lynn Gilliard is the author of the self-help audiobook Survive, Live or Thrive? and Let Him Chase YOU, a dating guide for women. Both are now available at Audible.com for free when you sign up for a new account with your Amazon email.

 

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Let Him Chase You Book

In a Hurry to Get… Nowhere?

Have you ever found yourself bustling around doing errands here and there and rushing from place to place? You’re annoyed and impatient as you wait on the line. You speed past motorists and honk at people who you feel are driving too slowly.

Then you finally get home and do… nothing. Maybe watch some television. Maybe you hurry through making a meal or crash after all that hustling around and fall asleep.

When that happens you’ve just spent an entire day hurrying through your life for little to no reason at all.

You were in a rush to get nowhere, and when you did get there (nowhere) you probably felt as if the entire day was a blur.

When you do this you’re missing out on your life. Our life is NOW, in every moment. Revel in it, enjoy it, benefit from it, learn from it.

Life isn’t supposed to be a mad dash to the finishing line. If it was, think about what that finishing line really is… Do you really want to hurry things along?

Or do you want to enjoy life to the fullest?

A few minutes of your life have ticked by since you started reading this post. Did you enjoy it? Did you benefit from it? If so, good! Now do that with everything that you choose to do in your day.

Stop and sniff the roses every now and again. Bring a book to the coffee shop and read it with a mug of hot coffee instead of getting one to go. Take a walk around the park or sidewalk in your town checking out new shops. Take your lunch at work outside when it’s nice outside instead of eating it at your desk. People watch. Call a friend you haven’t chatted with in a while.



And whenever you find yourself rushing around from place to place, ask yourself why? What do you have to do later on that is so important that you can’t enjoy your precious moments now? You can’t get those moments back.

Happiness is not some destination in the future — we can have it RIGHT NOW.

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

New Book: Survive, Live or Thrive? by L. Lynn Gilliard

New Book:

Survive, Live or Thrive?

by L. Lynn Gilliard

 

Simple Life Tips for Those Who Feel Stuck in a Rut

This is a guide for those who feel that they may be stuck in a rut in one or more areas of their life, including:

– pursuing your dreams
– making good money
– dating and love relationships
– family relationships
– self-love

Though the book is specifically targeted for women who are experiencing challenges in their lives, the concepts apply to everyone. Fueled by the idea that life is meant to be easy and enjoyable, it is loaded with stories, blog posts from Lynn’s websites and other inspirations and thoughts to help propel you to the ultimate goal: THRIVING in every area of your life.

Get the Amazon Paperback Here

 

Audio version – Coming soon

You Can’t Be Everything to Everyone… Especially If You’re Nothing to Yourself

Why is it that some of us think so much of others but not much of ourselves?

Maybe because we’ve allowed so many negative messages about ourselves to enter our heads over the years since childhood, but for some reason we don’t think anyone else could have had the same experience.

In our minds, everyone else is living well and oh so happy. Everyone else is just great! But we can’t see the greatness in ourselves.

sad sunflower
Courtesy © Ivan Chuyev | Dreamstime Stock Photos

The truth is that everyone else around us is probably going through the same stuff. But because we think everyone ELSE is awesome and perfect, we will do more for them and pay more attention to them than our own selves. How twisted is that?

Women do this the most by far.

Do you downgrade yourself when talking about yourself but uplift and support everyone else?

Are you always coming to the rescue of others but don’t think you’re worthy or important enough to help yourself?

Do you minimize your own light to let the light of others to shine brighter?

This can apply to something as seemingly minor as neglecting to tell people that it’s your birthday. Are you the type of person who will hold back from telling people that it’s your birthday, on the day of your birthday, for fear of seeming “narcissistic” or self serving? I used to be one of those people, but now I am more than happy to tell everyone who will listen that it’s my b-day or that it’s coming up soon. Yes! This was the day that the awesome human being that is ME came to be. Celebrate with me baby!



And guess what? I get gifts, birthday wishes and special dinner offers when I do that!

So here is the question of this post:
How can you be everything to everyone else when you’re nothing to yourself?

The answer is that you can’t. No way possible. Even people who have sky high self-esteem and self-worth know that it’s impossible to please or help everyone.

Take care of yourself! I can’t stress this enough. It’s admirable to want to help others but it’s only truly EFFECTIVE when you’re mentally, emotionally, physically and financially healthy first.

Love Lynn

What You Do to Others, You Do to Yourself (The Golden Rule)

If there is one concept that I have learned to be very much true concerning the laws of the universe it’s that Karma is real.

I believe that we are all a part of one. We’re connected. So no matter how disparate our lives seem, no matter how much we try to separate ourselves into different communities and groups, we are all one. So when you go out of your way to do or say something negative to someone else, it’s like you are doing it to yourself. It’s going to come back to you in some way whether you like it, believe it or not.

I also have a theory that some people experience small bouts with Karma almost immediately because the Universe wants us to learn a lesson quickly. God wants us to move on to bigger and better things. I experience this type of thing all the time — small, manageable things like stubbing your toe after mumbling something not so nice under your breath.

When karma takes its time to work it’s because the offender doesn’t have as much potential to change for the better. The karma just builds up over time until it finally drops on that person’s head like an anvil.

You give judgment, you get judgment.
You give criticism, you get criticism.
You give blame, you get blame.
You give support, you get support.
You give love and understanding, you get that in return.

The Golden Rule is called “golden” because it is a simple yet valuable tool to carry around with you at all times…

“Treat others the way that you would want to be treated.”

Because guess what, good or bad, at some point you *will* be treated that same exact way. And when that happens all you can really do is thank yourself!

Love Lynn



Lynn Gilliard is a writer, transformational blogger and author of a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Have You Allowed the World to Put You in “Your Place?”

Are you living your life the way you want to live it, or the way you’ve been told or taught you have to live it?

There’s a good chance that you are where you are right now in life because you have allowed the opinions, thoughts, actions and words of other people to pigeonhole you into a certain station in life.

We create and form our reality. What we accept for ourselves is what we get.

Someone, maybe a parent, sibling or peer, insulted you throughout your younger years. Eventually you started to believe that characterization of who you are.

A mean, miserable teacher told you that the only job you would be good at is working at a grocery store. So instead of pursuing a job or career in the field of your choice you continue to work in retail stores. (In fact, schools often shape our futures by forcing us to choose a major without giving us proper counseling about this major life decision.)

Your friends taught you that drinking and getting drop down drunk every weekend or taking drugs is normal, so that’s what you continue to do week after week.

You were told since a young child that getting married and having babies is crucial to being a happy normal woman. But here’s a newsflash: a lot of married women with kids are absolutely miserable! Some young women may be happier if they follow a different path early on before settling down.

Someone may have told you that your skin color wasn’t the “right” shade, or that you weren’t attractive enough, or that you’re not the right size, so you believed those things and took a certain path in life based on that information.

Words can be powerful. Accepting a negative affirmation into your reality is almost like taking a spoonful of slow acting poison that breaks down your life force little by little every day. Accepting the opinions and beliefs of others into your reality can cause low self-esteem, which causes you to live a less fulfilling life. Low self esteem prevents you from dreaming big.



How can we ever manage to live a life that makes us happy if we’re living our lives based on what other people want or see for us?

What do YOU really want for your life? What do YOU see for yourself? Where do YOU want to be? Who do YOU want to share your life with?

If you’re not happy with the way your life has been going, start answering these questions.

Then start envisioning the answers manifesting in your life.

Then start living your life the way it was meant to be lived!

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer, transformational blogger and author of a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Yes I Matter, I Come First, and What?: Prioritizing Your Needs As a Woman

As a young girl and woman I was always the one who selflessly gave of myself to others — even when it wasn’t convenient for me. I’d take the smallest portion to eat, even though I had just spent hours in the kitchen cooking the meal. I would relinquish a spot at the outlet in a coffee shop so that someone else could charge up, even if that meant I would have to cut my time working or studying short. I would go out of my way to please men sexually, even when I wasn’t really pleased in return. I would drive people all around town to help them out even if it caused me to be late for my own affairs.

I think a lot of us women do these things in one way or another — putting others ahead of us; putting their needs ahead of ours. It’s a learned behavior — a lot of us learn it from watching the older women in our families do this 24/7 for years and years.

For me that type of thinking is now a distant memory as I have adopted the new motto: “I am the most important person in my life.” I believe that statement should be true in every person’s life.

This is not a call for us to be selfish and neglect everyone around us — it’s a call for us to stop being selfless as women and prioritize our own needs. Being selfless is not good — we NEED self. We need that self to be strong and happy. The truth is that if we’re not okay, we can’t do much good for anyone else. This includes mothers, wives, caregivers, employees and volunteers. It’s crucial that we tend to our own needs first and foremost — only then can we properly tend to the DESERVING AND APPRECIATIVE people on our lives who need our help and provide reciprocal support/love.

So if someone tries to make you feel guilty for putting your needs before theirs, don’t be afraid to stand up and say “YES I MATTER, I COME FIRST IN MY LIFE. Who comes first in YOUR life?”

Showing love and attention to yourself is one of the first bold steps toward complete and unlimited happiness. Start today.

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer, transformational blogger and author of a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Opening Up and Reaching Out: The Lesson a (Formerly) Stray Cat Taught Me

photo 2photo 3 Last night this little black and white cat was outside wrangling bones out of the garbage and sleeping in the cold. Now he’s in my lap, warm and toasty, purring.

I saw him earlier in the day milling around in the freezing cold. He came up to me and meowed like he had something to tell me. I left some food out. Later on that night something made me look outside.

There he was looking right back at me.

I smiled and shook my head. “Come on in kitty,” I told him, and he did.

Reaching Out — Sometimes You Just Have To
I’ve always been the type of person who keeps things in instead of reaching out for help. I have mostly saved my tears and moments of distress for late nights under my covers.

But what I’ve been learning more and more over the years is that sometimes you have to open up and let people in (even just a bit) if you want to live a better and more fulfilled life. Sometimes you need a little help, even if it’s just a positive word of encouragement, and you may be surprised to learn that there are good intentioned people who are more than happy to give it to you.

This little cat helped drive that point home for me. If he hadn’t come up to me to say “hi,” approaching me in such a friendly and open manner, I probably wouldn’t have taken him in, fed him and given him a warm place to sleep. He’s now officially a house cat with a home.

Trust Your Intuition
The main lesson here is that you can’t live your life in fear of people judging or rejecting you, because there’s always that chance that reaching out to one special person will open you up to a new and better opportunity. You have to follow your intuition and do bold or scary things sometimes to unlock those doors.

Hey, thanks for looking out!
Hey, thanks for looking out!

I don’t think that you should trust *everyone* that you meet, but you should trust your intuition, always. If you feel it is strongly telling you to reach out for help from someone in particular (like kitty over there), don’t let your fear get in the way. Do what you need to do to be healthy, happy and whole.



Love Lynn

 

Lynn Gilliard is a writer, transformational blogger and author of a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.