be bold

20 Things to Be Thankful For That Don't Revolve Around Cash

Have you found yourself cash deficient and losing sight of the beauty that the world has to offer? Whatever you do, don't allow your fears and frustrations to get the best of you. Allow for what is working and beautiful in your life to offer you strength and courage. In an effort to help us remember the many free things in life that we can be thankful for, here are 20 things to be thankful for:

  1. The art of conversation
  2. A forever friend
  3. A stranger's nod and smile
  4. The love of a child
  5. The touch of a loved one
  6. A listening ear
  7. Legs on which to walk
  8. Eyes with which to see
  9. Hands which can build and touch
  10. Words of wisdom
  11. The ability to be kind and help
  12. Tummy tickling laughter
  13. The sun shinning in the sky
  14. The moon illuminating our nights
  15. The blue sea
  16. Prayer and meditation
  17. A good ole' jog in the park
  18. Sleep for a weary mind
  19. Grace and forgiveness
  20. Hope
And new beginnings too...All will be OK...but we must first be thankful for the things that are working and the things that are true to the heart.
Feel free to add to the list above! Look forward to your ideas...
-Jen Engevik
Project BE Bold

It's Time to Enlarge Your Vision

Visiting Mom's house and  came upon a book left behind by my brother by Joel Osteen. 

He wrote about how many times we human beings sell ourselves short. We settle for less than we're worth on so many levels. It's all-too easy to curl up in a ball and rock back and forth, lamenting about the things we could have done...or things we'll probably never do.

Osteen wrote about a man who one day visited Maui. The man saw a beautiful home and mentioned that he'd never be able to enjoy living in such a place. With that mindset, he was definitely right. Or for the person who says..."I'll never have a good relationship," it will most likely be so.

We must enlarge our vision and go into action to make our dreams come true. It's not about having a pricey home or numerous expensive is about open our eyes to the unlimited opportunities around us.

Osteen writes:

"You've been wallowing where you are long enough. It's time to move on, to let go of past hurts, pains, or failures. It's time to believe for bigger things. It's time for increase, time for promotion, time for supernatural favor. But if that's going to happen, you can't keep going in circles, doing the same thing the same way year after year...the key to developing a fresh vision for your life is breaking the barriers of the past."

In what areas of your life do you need to enlarge your vision? I dare begin here :-D

- Jen Engevik

Day 1: Jen's Twenty-One Days to Forge a Habit Experiment

Magical Swedish Summer Evenings

Yesterday was July 20, 2011 - the first day of my 21 Days to Forge a Habit Experiment. My workday was filled with lots of article writing for clients, many lapses in focus, and a burning desire to chuck my computer down from the balcony of our attic apartment conversion here in Gothenburg. LOL. Seriously, sometimes sitting in front of the computer makes me go quite mad, yet writing is my craft and I love the overall process.

The morning turned into noon, noon into the afternoon and then came evening. I knew I had made the commitment to run for 30 minutes, 21 days in a row - yet I kept putting it off and putting it off. Ten p.m. rolled around and I sat on the couch wanting to watch a movie. My better half looked at me and began laughing and asked, "so what about your vow to run for 21 days!" We laughed for a few moments together, but my giggles turned into frustration...and then determination. "We'll see whose laughing in 30 minutes," I yelped.

The next thing I knew I was grabbing my shoes and leashed up Melvin the dog to join me. He was more than thrilled to be getting out for adventure. Luckily life here in Sweden is in full swing at 10pm in the Summer...the sky is still light and men, women and children are out enjoying each and every moment of the season's magic.

Melvin the Dog - Ready to go Run!

Out the door Melvin and I went on  our quest to "be bold." We ran and enjoyed every minute. Our trek took us past the city amusement park, a couple museums, outdoor restaurants and a raging party. Melvin did his best to stay focused, his little legs working hard to keep up. He had to make a few stops to sniff and make is mark on the world and one real big smelly mark in the middle of a public square that required some cleanup...and saw a handful of people watching me scurry to find a piece of paper to pick it up with, so an unsuspecting victim wouldn't step in it.

On my first day of making he commitment to run 21 days in a row, I'd have to say the hardest thing was getting out of the door. I tried to make every excuse not to sit and veg. And to be honest, I had stomach cramps because...well...if you're a woman you know why. I tried to tell myself that because of that I should sit and mope a bit. But I went after all...I didn't run like a marathon pro...just took one stride and then the other. The best part of it all was that when I walked back in the door, I was feeling great! I can't tell you how good it felt to look laziness...and the mockery of my other half in the eyes and say "so there! I did it!!"

Today is day#2 - Let's see what it will bring.

Any of you out there decide to take making a new habit/or breaking one? I'd love to hear about it! Email me at

"The victory of success is half won when one gains the habit of setting goals and achieving them. Even the most tedious chore will become endurable as you parade through each day convinced that every task, no matter how menial or boring, brings you closer to fulfilling your dreams."

Og Mandino ~

5 Ways to Gain Instant Freedom

1. Chuck your cell phone in the river! can at least pretend you are throwing it in the river for an hour, 5 hours, a day or more. Have you ever felt an energy drain when going back and forth between looking at your smartphone and enjoying a dinner, a movie, exercise or other activity? Research has shown that by taking your focus away from one activity and throwing it into the other fragments the mind and causes unneeded stress/frustration.

2. Delegate responsibility & simplify. Your story may be..."I do everything around here and no one helps. No one understands or wants to make my life easier. Sob...gasp...sob...gasp." Take a moment to look in the mirror and be real with yourself. Some of us create our own stress. We make things much harder than they need to be. We do and do and do, wishing that somebody will see how hard we work and all that we accomplish. It is only when we stand up and say "I need help!!!", set new rules and recreate our systems that we can gain relief. You may want to journal about why you may be taking on so much and not asking for help more often....or demanding it for that matter. Is it possible that in some way you gain worth by piling so much on your shoulders?

3. Do something out of character. It is easy to get caught in daily patterns that make you feel as though you are living groundhog day. You get up, you eat, you work, you fix dinner, you watch a bit of TV or read and go to bed. And you do everything within a certain set of parameters. You wear the right things, you act the way everyone expects you to act, and that's that.

I dare you to do something to shock everyone. If you are afraid of heights, join a rock climbing club or go sky diving. If you are normally the silent wallflower, start a blog and share your deepest thoughts and opinions with the world or speak up! If you usually go to work wearing a drab suit, throw on something racy and see what happens. If you go through life each day without much energy and walk down the street looking at your feet, try your best to look up and try your best to create energy. See how differently people react to you!

The moral of the story is -- sometimes we get locked into a particular category and we begin to feel like we've lost our authenticity...or that we are required to play a particular role. When we mix it up a bit, we can't help but feel a bit free!

4. Do something you loved to do as a kid. Drop all responsibility for a few hours or a day and go do something that you loved to do in your younger days. We gain energy when we renew our wonder and connect with the child within. Don't be afraid to act silly. Ride your bike without holding onto the handle bars, do a cannon ball into the pool, take a trip to Disneyland and sing It's a Small World at the top of your lungs, climb a tree, finger paint, build a fort, go fishing...visit your childhood home and neighborhood.

5. Take a last minute trip. Traveling has the power to help us reset our lives and free our souls! You can jump into your car and drive a few towns away, find a last minute vacation deal online, throw a tent in your trunk and seek out a great campground, etc.

In the case that you have kids, how about secretly packing things up and then announcing out of the blue that you are all going on a weekend getaway. Drop everything you are doing and just go!  Or if you and your spouse need a getaway, make last minute plans with the grandparents or a babysitter you trust and set out for an adventure. You may fear leaving the kids behind, but they will be OK once they get settled.


These are only a handful of ideas...there are many more ways to gain freedom! Would love to hear your ideas...comment below to share!

Whatever we do in life -- we must constantly evaluate our actions and recognize that we are the creators of our realities and experiences!

- Jen Engevik

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Freeing Ourselves - February 15, 2010

In our pursuit of freedom and creativity, we should continually strive to give our loved-ones and friends space. Space to make their own decisions -- space to have independent thoughts -- space to develop other friendships -- space in the kitchen -- space in the car -- space in their own minds. When we bind those we love in our web of needs, expectations, attachments and fears, we lose. Our "love" for the people around us becomes a binding contract that stifles rather than an exercise of unconditional giving.

Kahlil Gibran writes in his most highly acclaimed book The Prophet, "Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone...and stand together yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart. And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow."

Dare not to have any expectations that weigh a person down, rather be thankful beyond all belief that they are in your life!!

By providing freedom to our loved ones and friends, we will in turn free ourselves.

Now, go out and make bold choices today!!

- Team Project Be Bold