Monday Motivation: Give the Gift of Light

By Loralyn Mears PhD Loralyn Mears PhD has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on December 16, 2019

Monday Motivation here we come! We see you – coffee cup in hand, trudging through the dark cursing your commute. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back! If you’re more of a podcast person versus someone who reads, listen at our Monday Matters content on Spotify. Check out our Grit Daily podcast channel.

This column is for those of you who slog through your Monday mornings. Studies show that your morning mood affects your productivity all day. Grit Daily offers an avenue to connect with others like you. We’re here to help get your work week off to a good start. Pump your fists – it’s time for Monday Motivation!

Let your light shine bright

There will never be a shortage of failures, misfires, and people who want to extinguish your light. Don’t let them. Shine brightly whenever you can! This is what Monday motivation is all about this week.

It’s the holidays. Along with all the “extra” calories, drinks, obligations, and decorations comes a lot of stress. At this time of year, anxiety shoots through the roof for more than two-thirds of Americans. Statistics show that 69% are stressed about not having enough money to get through the holidays and 51% are approaching full-on panic with the pressure of having to buy gifts.

Here’s a Monday motivation solution to both issues – give the gift of light. Your light. Bring it into someone’s home or heart who needs it.

It’s not about the gift wrap

It’s about what’s inside of you. Sure, gifts are very nice to receive, particularly when they’re unexpected and personally meaningful. But the holiday commercialization and over-the-top societal norm to keep up with the Kardashians that have emerged over the last decade taint the season like tarnished tinsel. Be a contrarian! Practice Monday motivation with gratitude and grace, not greed.

Although the holiday originated as a religious celebration marking the birth of Christ, it has since devolved into a secular event that seems to be getting further away from the early 20th century “modern” intent of the day to unite families and give one, special gift to each other. Each year, the pressure is on to give more elaborate gifts than the year before. An iPhone 11 for your 8-year-old child? Perfectly normal. Even if it means purchasing it on a payment plan that will remind you about the gift every month for the next three years.

Tips to give the gift of light

Take the pressure off. Think about starting new traditions. Consider how you can bring your light to someone who really needs it. Make an effort to spend time with loved ones – or strangers – confined to a hospital or nursing home. Perhaps you can make a donation to a cause that’s important to you in lieu of exchanging holiday gifts. I mean, seriously, do you really need another coffee or travel mug? Or use that money to pay for gas, get in the car and take a road trip (or flight) to see someone who will be overjoyed that you made the effort.

Keep shining. Don’t let your spirit or glow be dampened by the grinches and Scrooges that surround you. Find one way to bring your light to one person.

#1 – call someone that you haven’t talked to in a while

This is the perfect time of year to reach out. There may be someone in your life where a lot of time has gone by since you last talked or visited. Recognizing that the conversation may be awkward at first, plan for it by jotting down a few bullet points that you’d like to talk about to keep the discussion on track. Having a few nice things to talk about, including a warm opener, will help prevent the conversation from going sideways.

#2 – visit a local shelter

Whether you like furry friends or people, those housed in shelters will always be uplifted by your presence. Small efforts have big effects and the ripple effect, if everyone does something for someone in need, is immeasurable.

#3 – spend time with a friend

Ok, so you had a tiff. There’s been some sort of falling out or maybe you’ve just been trying to distance yourself from that friend or former bestie who you’ve grown apart from. Maybe they need a visit from you. Call them up, ask to meet them for a coffee, be there to listen to them but also to keep them focused on things that are positive about the holidays.

Who motivates YOU?

Sheila Good calls herself #BossLadyBizCoach, wears a Supergirl costume (complete with a cape) and just puts herself out there for her family, friends, and clients. Yes, she does give physical gifts (I received a sparkly t-shirt emblazoned with a Supergirl logo and her tagline) but she gives of herself. She shares her time, her wisdom and her heart.

Photo credit: Sheila Good #BossLadyBizCoach in her Super Power suit

This former model understands that people can beautiful inside and outside. Sheila gives the gift of light and is our Monday motivation hero of the week. Her messages are genuine and a reflection of her heart. And she practices what she preaches. She has a busy household with six children that she birthed plus five other “beautiful souls” that she chose to add to her family. Sheila opened her home to offer love and hope. In addition to her work coaching clients and taking care of all her loved ones, she also embarks on frequent missions to help others.

Give what’s inside of you. If that’s not enough for someone, then find someone else who appreciates it – and appreciates you. That’s a wrap for Monday motivation. Get out there and go shine for yourself and anyone that you want to gift your light to!

Photo credit: Myriam Zilles from Pixabay 

By Loralyn Mears PhD Loralyn Mears PhD has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Journalist verified by Muck Rack verified

Dr. Loralyn Mears is a Columnist at Grit Daily and a podcast host (The Grit Files, which aims to shine the spotlight on female founders). She is a content marketer, founder of the WORKtech startup, STEERus, specializing in personal and professional development to address gaps in soft skills - communication in particular. In her consultancy practice, she helps clients with content and strategy. Loralyn spent over a decade playing with mosquito DNA, got her PhD, decided she would rather market science than be at the bench and has never looked back. Along the way, she’s wined and dined her way around the globe. She's authored two books, including the 2018 Gold Medal Indie Book award-winning, One Sip At a Time: a Memoir and the hard science thriller, "The Battle for Humanity: How Science Saved Us." 

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