Monday, January 26, 2015

Barnes & Noble – Author-Signing Event-Semester Abroad

"Come join us at Barnes and Noble (Roseville) on Saturday, Feb. 14th, as we'll be hosting an author-signing event for Joanne Veeck's new novel, Semester Abroad. (1:00-3:00.) For more information, go to, or visit:"

*(The communications director felt Semester Abroad was the ideal book to present on Valentine's Day due to its twists and turns surrounding the young romance, the romantic European setting,  and the surprising ending.)

Saturday, January 17, 2015


CONTACT: Joanne Veeck (916) 847-0213

“Jump into suspense, young romance and mayhem at an international college in the middle of the Swiss Alps, where an American student walks a thin tight rope, barely balanced by a web of troubles.”

ROCKLIN, CA, January 6, 2015 – Local inspirational author, Joanne Veeck, has recently added a novel for young adults to her collection of published books. In addition to authoring three children’s books, Joanne co-authored Stepping Stones to Success with Deepak Chopra, Jack Canfield, and a few other experts in the field of Positive Psychology. She holds a lifetime teaching credential, is a national speaker, certified life coach, and the founder of Women Inspire Women (WIW) of Rocklin, a women’s group that supports and inspires personal success and well-being. In 2012, Joanne was invited to present her children’s book, Your Leaves Are Pretty, at Sacramento’s largest literary event.

Set in Switzerland, Semester Abroad is a story of a daughter of a top executive, expected to keep to the rules, who does anything but that. She talks her way into going to a small, relatively unknown college in Europe, for one compelling reason, and then becomes entangled in a physical and emotional tug of war that takes a shocking turn.

From skiing at world famous resorts in Switzerland, to the ritzy Champs-Elysees Boulevard in Paris, the red-light district in Amsterdam, and other European marvels, Joanne and her college friends experience the full gamut of a semester abroad, including a near-death accident and many close calls.

J. Workman, an elementary school teacher from Boulder, Colorado, who holds a masters in Educational Psychology, said, “Although Joanne Veeck’s novel, Semester Abroad, is geared to young adults, I couldn’t put it down, and I’m in my thirties. Heart-wrenching, suspenseful, romantic and funnythis story is captivating and impossible not to love.”

Joanne is available for interviews and appearances. For booking presentations, media appearances, interviews, and/or book signings, contact

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Now Available–J. Veeck's Novel, SEMESTER ABROAD

Enjoy the unique and fascinating journey (based on a true story) of a college semester abroad, from a not-so-traditional college student. The events surrounding Semester Abroad have been taken from a well-preserved, 40-year old detailed diary. It is heart-warming, humorous (hysterical at times), suspenseful, romantic and so fun that young adult readers won't want to put the book down.

From world-renowned ski resorts in Switzerland, to the ritzy Champs-Elysees Boulevard in Paris, Checkpoint Charlie in East Berlin, the red-light district in Amsterdam, and many other European marvels, Joanne Jeffers and her college friends experienced a full gamut of a semester abroad. A thin tight rope was walked, barely balanced by a web of troubles and disasters. After a near-death accident Joanne became entangled in a physical and emotional tug of war that ultimately led to a final, climatic shocking turn–that will leave readers scratching their heads and wondering for days.

It is my hope that junior high/high school students will love the story line, immediately feel a connection to the characters, and will not only be inspired to attend college, but will also want to discover all the many wonder/life-altering experiences a semester abroad has to offer.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Who Do You "Think" You Are?

Our personal reality has been constructed by invisible currents flowing in, around, and through us. For better or for worse, no matter what we think about ourselves we hold a mental picture that will ultimately, and unquestionably turn into a physical reality. It will determine how we learn, our choice of career, our relationships, attitude, and even what we say. The accumulation of failure, rejections, set backs, etc., can badly damage our spirit and stifle our personal belief system. Remember, your thoughts are voluntary! To remain a victim is a bad choice. We have the power to make our reality what ever we want!

A rich life full of meaning and growth often requires a remodeling of our thinking. Eliminate negative moods and the tendency to put yourself down. Write down your qualities and ideas, trust your own brilliance, and let your greatness out!! Creating your own reality is an important skill, because success doesn't come from where you are, it comes from what you think!

Go on! Push yourself, today, farther than you've ever gone before. There are deeper layers of energy and creativity just waiting to surface. Just by taking the smallest steps you are communicating to you and the world that you believe in yourself and your dreams!!!

Make every moment count and have a great day!


Saturday, April 26, 2014

Enormous Benefit to Accomplishing Even the Smallest Task

To jump-start your goals, and kick the paralyzing habit of getting bored, sidetracked, procrastinating, or waiting for the elusive perfect time, chose an easy priority task and complete it. Schedule, start and finish a specific goal-oriented activity, for just thirty minutes, even if you don't feel inspired! (Have a specific outcome in mind) Once you complete the task, you'll not only break the pattern of inertia, your momentum and confidence will increase! To help keep your attention focused, visualize yourself enjoying the benefits of achieving your short, mid and long-term goals!

We all have thirty minutes. Let's move from thinking, pondering, and reflecting to getting down to business. Many of us have already experienced the amazing feeling/benefits of accomplishing some of our goals, so why not keep it going? Perseverance, unquestionably one of the key factors, along with concerted effort and self-discipline, we really can turn our dreams into reality!! :–)

Friday, April 4, 2014


You are meant to live an exciting life with pride beside you, and hope ahead of you! Once you liberate yourself from dwelling on problems, and start focusing on opportunities, you will discover your true design of potential, greatness and endless creativity. Successful people, whether born with a silver spoon in their mouths, or in poverty have one thing in common; they run toward the light of opportunity (not away from it) wherever it shines. Without successful experiences you will remain trapped inside a negative belief system and self image. Self esteem is life's highest value.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


When something is missing in our lives we can do one of two things. We can be in denial and stay rooted in a web of dissatisfaction, or we can take a brave step of admitting the truth, then choosing to release the pattern, creating a new plan, and committing to taking action. The pivotal element we need is WILLINGNESS–then watch your energy and creativity flow like magic! 

*(Celebrate the step that you finally took and then keep on going! Each accomplishment generates energy and motivation to do the next thing on your list. We all have the potential for greatness, including you!)

Friday, March 28, 2014

Make Today Count!

Thought For the Day: Move outside the lines of accepted convention. If you don't break some of the rules you'll miss opportunities for creative thinking. Forget about how practical or realistic your ideas are, and most importantly, don't give a single thought to what other people might think! As Laurence Boldt stated, "Follow your own heart, make up your own rules, and dare to dream the impossible."

Friday, March 14, 2014

Joanne's New Website

I invite all of you to browse through my new website, There is a lot to be gained just by reading through it. Whether you think you've "heard it all before," or you're reading material like this for the first time, you can never get too much of a really good thing.

After one of my clients reviewed my website she said, "Joanne, you've just about given away the store..." My response to her was, "Yes, it's a lot of good information, but the truth is, it barely touches the surface. There is much more to learn, and then gain, by practicing the scientifically proven methods of Positive Psychology.

If you know anyone that could stand some encouragement, needs some uplifting, or guidance to a new, more positive way of thinking and living, please feel free to share my website with them or have them contact me, personally.

As stated in my website, there are many speakers and life coaches, but with my knowledge, passion, and determination to help people.

And, one more thing – here's a little hint: If you want to see positive changes in your life, hang around people who inspire you... people that thrive on change, take risks, and who will sharpen your ideas!

I hope you enjoy my website! I would love to hear from you!


Joanne Veeck

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Review by Editor of Sacramento Parent Magazine

Lessons Learned from a Little Boy

By Shelly Bokman
I read through local author Joanne Veeck’s latest children’s book, We Love You Just the Way You Are, and I must admit I had to hunt down a tissue before I could begin to write about it. This true story of a special needs boy named Adam is filled with honest and heart-felt dialogue between both the adults and children in Adam’s life. We are given a glimpse of his struggles and his parents’ inevitable concerns. We see how his family, teachers and classmates are captivated by his sweet spirit and because of Adam; they learn to see people for who they really are. Filled with compassion, this story shows us the extraordinary gifts Adam offers to his family and friends as they grow to know and love him.
Recently, Joanne read We Love You Just the Way You Are to a 4th grade class. When she finished she asked the children to rate her book from one to five stars. Before any of the children had the chance to even raise their hands, one boy shouted out, “SIX!”
In this climate of increased bullying, We Love You Just the Way You Are, is not only a must read for children—but for teachers of all levels and adults alike. For more information or to obtain a copy of any of Joanne’s books, visit

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Rocklin Author "on a roll"

Sunny, 89° Complete Forecast
Rocklin author Joanne Veeck on a roll
Publishes new book, will read at Sacramento kids’ literacy festival
By Krissi Khokhobashvili, Placer Herald editor
Joanne Veeck, Rocklin author, will read her children’s book “Your Leaves Are Pretty” this weekend in Sacramento. “It’s a wonderful book,” Veeck said, “and I can’t wait to read it to the kids Saturday and Sunday.”
Joanne Veeck’s writing runs the gamut from stories about colorful leaves and children with disabilities to co-authoring a motivational book about success with Deepak Chopra, Dr. Denis Waitley and Jack Canfield, author of “Chicken Soup for the Soul.”

Her newest book, published in August, is called “We Love You Just the Way You Are.” It is the story of Adam, a wheelchair-bound boy born with special needs who attends school in a classroom full of young students who never encountered someone like Adam. The children learn to embrace Adam’s differences, thus learning an important life lesson about acceptance.

“It shows that no matter who we are, where we come from and what we have or don’t have, we all have so much to offer,” said Veeck, who has a degree in teaching and studied child psychology and development at San Francisco State.

She’s an advocate for anti-bullying and positive psychology who believes that children should be taught from a young age about happiness and acceptance.

“It’s like when we teach a child to read, every single day, slowly but surely, they get it,” she explained. “…If we were to give them the tools and techniques at an early age, how to soothe themselves and how to be happy, they would get it now.”

Before “We Love You Just the Way You Are,” Veeck published “Your Leaves are Pretty,” which takes place in Sacramento’s Capitol Park. It shows the correlation between trees being uprooted and planted in a new environment to children going to school for the first time.

This weekend, Veeck will be at Fairytale Town in Sacramento, where she’s a featured author for the ScholarShare Children’s Book Festival. The two-day event features dozens of community organizations doing hands-on literacy activities with kids, including learning about Braille and how to use the library. Featured authors will give readings throughout the event on the Mother Goose Stage, including Veeck, who will read “Your Leaves are Pretty.”

“This year, the theme is ‘Fall into Books,’ so Joanne’s book was just perfect because it’s about leaves,” said Kathy Fleming, executive director of FairyTale Town.
Those colorful leaves were illustrated by Alta artist Laurie Barrows, who also did the illustrations for “We Love You Just the Way You Are.”

“I enjoyed doing the trees,” said Barrows, who works in water-based media and also runs the Arts Can Heal program out of Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital. “I enjoyed working with a local author, because most of my authors are all across the U.S., Canada, United Kingdom and Australia, so it was really refreshing to work with somebody local.”

Veeck said she didn’t start writing until she was in her 30s, when out of the blue she decided to dust off some old positive psychology books her father had given her. She started reading them, and soon was reading every inspirational and motivational book she could get her hands on.

That passion has translated into a career as a motivational speaker who presents at schools and colleges. In addition to writing three children’s books, she co-authored “Stepping Stones to Success,” in which she writes about how even though happiness is sought after world-wide, few people reach it, and how happiness is something that can be taught.

Veeck’s books are for sale on and through her website,
Her next project will be a young adult novel based on true events.
At the Children’s Book Festival, Veeck will have a booth where she’ll talk to parents and children about compassion, in addition to giving readings.
“It really is a great event,” Fleming said. “It’s really fun just to see people excited about reading, and in pretty much every corner of the park you’ll see little kids with their grownups reading books. It really is exciting.”

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Largest Early Childhood Literacy Event in Sacramento

September 29 at 10:00am until September 30 at 4:00pm

Join Fairytale Town and several local organizations for the largest early childhood literacy event in our region! 

The ScholarShare Children’s Book Festival features ongoing author and illustrator performances on the outdoor Mother Goose stage, free hands on literacy activities, a book fair and multiple booths from local literacy and arts organizations. 

This year's featured children's book authors and illustrators include: Bob Barner, Felipe Davalos, Dorina Lazo Gilmore, Sandy Lynne Holman, Heather Leigh, Michael Slack, Kenneth Spengler, Bethany Telles, Joanne Je ffers Veeck and Dawn Wynne. Hope to see you there!

Press Release - We Love You Just the Way You Are

                    For Immediate Release
                    tan book cover02.jpg

                Joanne Veeck’s latest children’s book:

                 We Love You Just the Way You Are

Filled with compassion, We Love You Just the Way You Are, a new children’s book, written by Joanne Veeck (author of Your Leaves Are Pretty, The Greatest Gift of All and co-author of Stepping Stones to Success), is not only a must read for children but for teachers of all levels/credentials and adults alike.  This true story is centered on Adam, a special boy from northern California, who was born with rare disabilities and the profound effect he and his life has had on an entire community.  With so few cases of Adam’s exact medical condition and special needs, worldwide, no one, including Adam’s doctors, was completely sure of what to expect. The love and care Adam has been given over the years is remarkable; but you’ll find the gifts Adam has offered to his family and friends to be truly extraordinary!

Joanne Veeck is an author, educator and keynote speaker. With over 17 years of research, she specializes in the topic of Positive Psychology. Joanne has proven that, when given the proper tools and techniques, happiness and overall well-being is completely attainable and should no longer be perceived as a lifelong goal. She is passionate about helping people of all ages, and her books are proof!

Recently Joanne read We Love You Just the Way You Are to a 4th grade class. When she finished she asked the children to rate her book from one to five stars. Before any of the children had the chance to even raise their hands, one boy shouted out, “SIX!” Read and feel the difference one woman can make!

For more information or to obtain a copy of any of Joanne’s books, visit: or email her at

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Saturday, Feb. 4th - Reading of New Children's Book

I will be holding an author's signing event and reading my new children's book, Your Leaves Are Pretty, at Avid Reader, in Sacramento, on Saturday, Feb. 4th, at approximately 2:00 p.m. This heart-warming story is for children, ages 4-9 and is based on actual events surrounding the developments of the Capitol Park in Sacramento. It's filled with fun facts, has an invaluable message for both children and adults and the audience will be sure to fall in love with the characters! For more information, visit my website: It will be a lot of fun and there might be a surprise for each child that attends. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Children's book ~ Your Leaves Are Pretty

Hello Friends,
I am happy to tell you that my second children's book, Your Leaves Are Pretty has recently been published and is now available, if you're interested in obtaining a copy. It is a fictional, heart-warming and inspiring story. The setting is the Capitol Park in Sacramento and the story is based on the trees that were brought in from all over the world and their challenges of being re-planted in a foreign land. It is based on actual events, has some fun facts and a valuable message to both children and adults. I worked closely with a local children's illustrator, Laurie Barrows and a great editor, Tracy Johnson. Reading ages are 5-10. To purchase a copy or for more information, contact me, or go directly to or (I've heard the shipping and handling is less through Createspace. )The cost is $10.95.
I will also keep you posted on my third children's book, We Love You Just the Way You Are, scheduled to be released in March of 2012.
As always, thanks for your interest and support!
Have a very happy new year!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Roseville/Granite Bay Press Tribune Article "Local Author Finds Steps to Success"

Joanne Veeck turns passion for positive psychology into chapter for book
By Sena Christian, The Press Tribune

Photo by Cole AllenJoanne Jeffers Veeck, a local motivational speaker and author, talks to people outside the Borders in Roseville Thursday about the book she co-authored, “Stepping Stones to Success: Experts Share Strategies for Mastering Business, Life and Relationships.”

On a random day about 15 years ago, Joanne Jeffers Veeck decided to re-examine an old interest.

That interest was psychology, a subject matter she studied during one year of graduate school at San Francisco State University. She hadn’t finished the degree but the topic continued to fascinate her through the years.

Around that time, Veeck also dusted off a set of books about positive thinking, given to her a few years before by her father as a Christmas gift. As she further embarked on her journey, she learned about positive psychology, which she describes as not the “doom and gloom” of focusing on the past and origin of personal issues — but on opportunities in the future.

“With positive psychology, you don’t really care about the past,” Veeck said. “You take the person you are today. Let’s not talk about what’s bad in you, let’s talk about what’s good in you.”

In the following years, this modern approach to psychology and achieving everlasting happiness became her passion.

“(Before this) I would have considered myself your basic, average (person) stressed out about unimportant things,” Veeck said. “This changed my life. All of the sudden I realized there is very little I wouldn’t be able to handle.”

Veeck, now 55 years old and a mother of two living in Loomis, became a motivational speaker and co-authored the recently released book, “Stepping Stones to Success: Experts Share Strategies for Mastering Business, Life and Relationships.” The book features interviews with 19 experts in the field of health, happiness and total body well being, such as Deepak Chopra, Jack Canfield and Dr. Denis Waitley.

The goal is for readers to experience positive and life-altering changes through what the authors call time-tested strategies. Veeck’s chapter focuses on her belief that happiness can be taught. People can learn how to discipline their minds, change their thoughts and adjust their attitudes to draw on inner strength and virtues to thrive.

“If you choose one day that your path for your life is happiness, it’s there,” Veeck said. “But you have to open your mind. It starts with your mind.”

Born in Palo Alto and raised all over the United States and in Mexico City, Veeck graduated from the University of the Pacific with a degree in education and a teaching credential. She later moved to San Francisco to study psychology and child development.

In 1984, her father George Jeffers started a family business so Veeck dropped everything and moved to Sacramento from Marin County to help run PriceLess Drug Stores. She worked for the retail drug store chain for 24 years, several of those spent as vice president of the company.

Veeck said her father was an amazing businessman who deeply inspired her. She observed how he interacted with people and the compassion he showed. He’d call his employees the “greatest cashier” or the “greatest office manager,” to encourage them to be the best they could be, she said.

But in 2006 her father passed away and the family soon sold the business. The change gave Veeck a chance to devote more time to acting as a motivational educator in local middle schools and high schools to teach lessons for happiness. Her first talk, called “Happy Hour,” took place at Warren T. Eich Intermediate School in Roseville in 2001.

In 2008, she completed 20 speaking engagements, earning a spot as a member of the National Speakers Association.

“I knew I had a calling to help folks realize their incredible potential and creativity,” Veeck said.

Janelle Hankins, a 33-year-old mother of three in Loomis, has attended one of Veeck’s seminars.

“I learned to let go of the negativity I was carrying with me from my past,” Hankins said. “I was able to re-examine bad experiences from my past and find the positive in them.”

Hankins said she also felt inspired to try new adventures and has since hiked Half Dome in Yosemite, gone whitewater rafting and is currently learning Taekwondo.

Thursday afternoon, Veeck stood outside Borders in Roseville — where she has an upcoming book reading event — and talked to passersby about her passion. Two of those people were Michael and Deborah Dunn, who have both attended several motivational seminars through their jobs. After a long conversation, Veeck gave them a copy of her book.

“We’ll read it,” Deborah Dunn said. “You can always find at least one thing that you can take away with you. Even just one thing is of value.”

Veeck said talking to people is one of the most fulfilling aspects of her work, especially when she deals with individuals struggling with emotional suffering who need a positive outlook on life.

“I am able to really help them,” Veeck said. “It’s real. It’s not just words.”

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Borders and Books Signing Events

Thank you for all your kindness and support with my book project, "Stepping Stones to Success," with Deepak Chopra, Jack Canfield and others. Yes, you can get it on but if you'd like it personalized and don't want to pay shipping or handling I will be happy to send you a copy.

These are the dates of the Borders and Books signing events in the Sacramento region:

Aug. 7 (1-4) Folsom (2765 E. Bidwell)
Aug. 14 (10-2)Sacramento (2339 Fair Oaks Blvd.)
Sept. 4 (1-4) Roseville (2030 Douglas Blvd.)
Sept. 25 (1-4) Elk Grove (7415 Laguna Blvd.)

This is a unique book! Everyone can and will benefit from it! I promise! Hope to see you soon!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Stepping Stones to Success

SEVIERVILLE, TENNESSEE— Joanne Jeffers Veeck, keynote speaker and author, has been selected from a nationwide search to be featured in Stepping Stones to Success; a highly successful book series from Tennessee based Insight Publishing. The book features best-selling authors Deepak Chopra (The Power of Purpose), Jack Canfield (Chicken Soup for the Soul), & Dr. Denis Waitley (featured in The Secret). Joanne Jeffers Veeck, Chopra, Canfield, and Waitley, are joined by other well known authors and speakers, each offering time-tested strategies for success in frank and intimate interviews.

Joanne Veeck, an educator and a former top executive from Northern California, has devoted much of her life researching, practicing and teaching Positive Psychology. She has redefined happiness and has proven both happiness and overall well-being can be achieved through a relatively simple and rewarding process. Joanne speaks nation-wide on the untold truths about what it takes to find lasting happiness and success. Finally the answers are available for the strategic attainment of what people worldwide spend a lifetime pursuing! For more information on Joanne Veeck and to order your copy of Stepping Stones to Success, contact:
Joanne Veeck
Loomis, CA – (916) 847-0213

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

State Your Purpose, Please

I once read, “99% of all people never reach their dreams and sadly, the reason is, because only 1% ever try.” A large survey, conducted by William Marsteen, a prominent psychologist, supported this statement. When the members of the survey were asked, “What do you have to live for,” 94% said they had no definite purpose. Many people wait and hope that someday their purpose will magically appear so they can experience the true joy of aliveness. I love how Jim Collins puts it in his book, Good to Great, “Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life.” In other words, “good is the enemy of great.” Life is just too darn short to watch, wonder and wait and “good” is just not good enough. The process of identifying your purpose will provide you a sense of peace and a new-found vitality in your life!

Discover your purpose by learning and becoming aware of what ignites your spirit and is in harmony with your natural strengths and desires. Being passionate and being guided and motivated by your passions work in unison toward living your purpose. Without passion life is reduced to mere existence, mechanical living and indifference.

Listen to the “loud” voices in your head. I refer to them as loud because once you do begin to pay a great deal of attention to the “whisperings of the conscience,” which remember, cannot be accessed from any other place, they become loud and clear. Recognize and value these inspirations that come to you and only you as they will help you visualize and organize your intricate plan.

Take action! Make a commitment to say good-bye to a blasé way of life. The purposeful direction of your mental, emotional and physical energy should be used toward following through with specific goals that will help you grow and live in your purpose. You are an important person and you have the capacity to make a difference in your world…accept this responsibility!

Balance and lasting happiness come from living in full awareness of your purpose. You will be pushed and pulled by competing demands and will be required to make adjustments along the way but “stating your purpose” will make you realize you are a stronger, more talented and capable person than you ever dreamed. Additionally, you will be inspired, comforted and guided on your journey through the best use of your great life.

Stayed tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

You're HIRED

A second grade teacher once asked me, “How do I apply the information and techniques you’ve given me to my second graders? I can already see patterns of behavior developing in some of my students that may lead to an imbalance overtime or worse, cause serious problems.” I loved that question because as the Dalai Lama states in the book, The Art of Happiness, “The most important use of education is (*should be) to help us understand the importance of engaging in more wholesome actions and bringing about discipline within our minds. The proper utilization of our intelligence and knowledge is (*should be) to effect changes from within to develop a good heart.” (*Unfortunately our society does not emphasize this.)

Because of the structure and functioning of our brains we CAN make a complete transformation of our mental state by mobilizing our thoughts and practicing new ways of thinking; deliberately selecting and focusing on being positive. The scientific name for this “learning and training” or the brains inherent capacity to change is called, “plasticity.” We’re lucky! We already have the equipment we need to achieve happiness; our “mind” and our “heart.” When it comes right down to it, happiness has very little to do with our conditions or how we perceive “the reasons” yet it has everything to do with how we perceive our situation. Below are various techniques we can teach our students, our children and ourselves, to help transform our outlook and the way we think.

First of all, build up determination and then begin each morning by thinking about positive things. Tell yourself “this day is a gift” and then utilize it in a more positive way. Replace previous negative conditioning with new positive conditioning. Repeating this process, day after day, will strengthen the positive aspects of the mind.

Second, make a special effort to be aware and reflect on your mental states. Address the negative mental traits so you can counter act each one as well as the positive traits so you can seek causes that create them.

Third, focus on remaining calm when disturbing events happen. When even the smallest amounts of anger are harbored other people will also appear hostile and then a chain reaction will occur. We’ll experience fear, a greater inhibition and sense of insecurity. Give up on the things that you recognize are harmful to you. Self-worth stems from developing the VALUE of human warmth and affection. When we maintain a feeling of compassion, loving kindness and appreciation of what we have our inner door will open and automatically create an inner calmness. Fear, self doubt and insecurity will go away.

Your awesome future is in your hands. Hire yourself to pave the way! Through training and constant familiarity of living positively, moment by moment, we can transform ourselves, which is the REAL “secret to happiness.”

Stay tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Friday, March 5, 2010

A Day with Maria Shriver - To Sum it Up...

Yesterday, I had the great fortune of “hanging out” with Maria Shriver. Okay, so now that I have your attention, the truth is, I did spend much of the day “with” her but it was because she was leading groups of people through the CA Museum for History Women and the Arts and I was lucky enough to be “up-close and personal.” I was able to meet Maria and thank her for all she has accomplished as First Lady of California. She is brilliant, witty and filled with vibrancy and determination!

The best part of the day was attending the conference, “I Did it My Way,” featuring Erin Brockovich, Sally Ride, Lisa Ling, Rita Moreno and Maria Shriver. I felt honored to be in such a small, intimate setting with these five inspiring and successful women. They shared their personal journeys, which included their struggles, their passions and what they felt most contributed to their overall success. I took four pages of notes and will attempt to deliver what I felt was both thought provoking and just great advice from each of the panel members.

Erin Brockovich – “Believe in you! The perception we have of ourselves is not what works for everyone else. Look in the mirror and say, ‘I’m -----, the winner!’ We share a gift way down inside that burns in all of us…don’t let anyone deter or stray you away from that. Follow your gut, it never lets you down. Utilize your power of choice.” Erin told the audience her mother use to put post-it-notes all over the house that read, “Stick Tuitiveness.” She said, “Be willing to fail because you always come out better on the other side.” Erin believes the greatest gifts we have are, the love of our families, good health and clean water! Her final words, as she turned her head and looked into the eyes of the audience, were, “It’s time to change the message. It’s time to change the perception of how you see yourself and your neighbor. Challenge yourself and push forward to see how great life can be for you!”

Sally Ride – “By age 6 it was clear I loved math and science. It wasn’t until high school that I realized my interests were “weird” because I had support from my parents and a strong family environment. Success requires motivation and that motivation needs to come from within. The key to success is hard work.” When she first went to work for NASA’s Johnson Space Center she was one of only four women out of 4,000 men. (Lisa Ling thought that sounded like fun…) Sally’s parting words were, “You will doubt yourself from time to time but something within you will propel you to move forward when you want it badly enough! Don’t do something because you think it is expected of you. Listen, search, explore and experiment to find your calling.”

Rita Moreno – “Never think that what you want is unattainable…I chose to swim. Hang out with people that encourage you and are constantly reinforcing that you can achieve. People who have a dream have a focus, a special energy. Don’t let anyone spoil that for you. It’s not power that helps you attain what you want, it’s perseverance… ‘You are not going to stop me.”’ At 78, Rita is beautiful, well-spoken and hilarious. Her last words to the audience were, “It’s a good thing to be a mature woman!”

Lisa Ling – (Lisa’s boss is Oprah Winfrey) “Put yourself out there! Travel, expose yourself to other cultures. If you can’t travel, take advantage of things in your own community…expand your horizon…never stop learning. Be aggressive and go beyond your comfort zone. Books cannot teach these things. If you want your dreams to come true, do what it takes ALL hours of the day. Risk it…it makes you feel alive! Do what you love and then be utterly relentless pursuing what you’re passionate about.” Lisa added, “I feel fortunate and I think we need to spend more time being grateful and concentrate on what we do have.” Maria asked Lisa, “How are you going to use your voice in 2010?” She answered with this statement, “I hope that through my work people will have a ‘journey’ to experience other things and cultures and acquire a stronger sense of humanity.”

Although I can only speak for myself, I think I can safely assume the audience members were more than moved and inspired by these women’s wisdom, knowledge and encouragement. I appreciated their time in offering their heart-felt messages to help myself and others maximize their potential for lasting happiness. As Lisa Ling stated, “Take advantage of things in your own community,” because you never know who you’ll meet, what you’ll learn or how it will impact how you “use your voice in 2010.”

Stay tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Monday, March 1, 2010

What Color Are Your Glasses?

First of all, I want to thank my “followers,” on blogspot or through my personal emails, for taking the time to comment on my articles. I love to know what you’re thinking! I’m intrigued by your questions, your honesty and even your skepticism.

After reading my article titled, Healthy Energy=Healthy Body, emphasizing the great impact our thoughts have on our physical and mental health, one of my “followers” told me her mother-in-law always seemed to view things and live her life through “rose-colored glasses.” As I read on, I realized she didn’t necessarily agree that her mother-in-law’s way was the best way. However, as I continued reading, I learned her mother-in-law, who passed away in her nineties, was a very happy, well respected, intelligent and compassionate woman. Can her long life and well-being be attributed to viewing life through her “rose-colored glasses?”

At this very moment, our minds are fully equipped to begin the process of achieving complete happiness. Identifying our mental state or consciousness, each our thousands of different thoughts, is the foundation for that accomplishment. We have to build an awareness of the negative emotions that are harmful to us and learn how to reduce or eliminate them. Equal in importance is recognizing the helpful and positive thought/emotion and learning how to nourish it! Once we learn how to identify our negative thinking that all too often turns into “patterns,” and realize how harmful it is to us personally, and to society as a whole, we can then make slight movements toward new, intentional choices that make us feel better and contribute to the well-being of others.

A balanced life is a conscious choice and requires the willingness to “let go” of what continuously doesn’t work, i.e. old habits and old beliefs. The fact is everyone is faced with problems, within their personal lives, societies and issues worldwide. But every human problem has many different angles. The severity of the problem depends on the angle from which it is viewed, from whom it’s viewed and the "color" of his/her glasses. People who view inevitable challenges of life through "rose-colored glasses" and seem to glide through tough times do so because they’ve chosen to react positively to predicaments.

We can’t control all of our problems but we can always control our reactions to them which ultimately control the effect they have on us, which is the bottom line! We simply need to ask ourselves, “What will I allow this problem to do to me?” Controlling our reaction doesn’t mean underestimating the problem, it means disciplining our minds to manage it positively and creatively. It’s true, problems can be opportunities; it just depends on the color of your glasses.

Stayed tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Best Case Scenario

According to researchers at Duke University, physical exercise is no longer considered good just for developing a lean and strong body or a strong heart. Now, it is actually viewed as a “preventative or wellness activity” that helps prevent physical and emotional conditions. The chemicals or endorphins that are released by the brain, during physical activity, are our body’s energy boosters and natural pain killers. One study showed that workouts of only eight minutes lowered sadness, tension and anger.

On the other side of the coin, physical inactivity can now be determined to be a “risk factor” for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, colon and breast cancer, obesity and depression. The American Heart Association has reported that more than 12% of total deaths are attributed to the lack of regular physical activity.

Okay, let’s review this. Physical activity renews energy, makes us look and feel great, and prevents a variety of illnesses and diseases. So, why, with all this said, is it a well-known fact that most people aren’t active enough? Usually it is blamed on lack of energy from working all day or just worn out from the hustle and bustle of daily life. But the holistic concept, which is supported by an enormous amount of evidence, indicates most people are “worn out” from the lack of nutrition in their diets. The fact is people have more energy when they eat well! The interconnectedness between nutrition and physical exercise is extremely important!

After most kinds of physical activity we are rewarded with a larger degree of alertness, in better moods and we feel more confident! Hopefully the “reward” is what will motivate you to respect your health by practicing good nutrition, which reinforces the entire cycle. Eating nutritionally, 70% of each meal should be fruits, whole grains and vegetables, and exercising regularly will give you great pleasure and satisfaction. You’ll not only be doing something great for yourself, but as Dr. Colin Campbell states, “You’ll be part of the vanguard working toward moving America into a healthier, leaner future.”

Stay tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Food For Thought...Literally

Diet and nutrition have a profound impact on mental and physical health. If your doctor doesn’t agree or realize this, don’t be too upset with him/her. The fact is, our western doctors have had very little training in nutrition, and it’s just not their area of expertise. It’s a shame, though, as the wrong food and lack of balanced nutrients can cause serious and damaging psychological and physical health issues! This is why I encourage you to educate yourself, (easier now than ever before with access to the internet) and gain knowledge of a more “holistic” approach to health, which simply addresses the body, the mind and the spirit as a whole. Start today with a self-care program that provides your body with the highest levels of nutrition!

Our bodies produce chemicals that regulate our moods and emotions. The lack of nutrients in the foods we eat will trigger certain amino acids and will decrease the production of emotional neurotransmitters.

Sugar, for example, is destructive to our bodies in so many ways. Most apparent is, it gives us an increase of energy, for a few moments and a false sense of feeling good but as soon as the insulin is produced in our bodies we will feel tired and possibly depressed. Whole grains, vegetables and fruits, on the other hand, increase the release of seratonin, which reduces our appetite, calms us, helps with physical pain and alleviates depression.

Although we need to eliminate animal fat from our bodies, we need to make sure we are getting the “healthy fats” from avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil and some fish. These fats promote the absorption of nutrients into our cells and a natural cleansing takes place, which also lessens depression and enhances our moods. On-going clinical studies have shown that folic acid deficiencies have been linked to depression but a simple glass of orange juice or a cup of cooked spinach will relieve it.

Hopefully this little bit of education will help you realize the importance of the foods you eat and will jump-start a healthier lifestyle. Over a period of time your taste buds will change. Instead of craving foods, that are high in sugar, high in the wrong fats or that contain artificial ingredients; you’ll crave the way you feel and your new zest for life.

Stay tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Just What It Takes

It is now more urgent than ever before to take control of our health, which must include changing our way of thinking to have a broader perspective, and should include the use of good nutrition. Food can not only lengthen or shorten your life, for better or for worse, it can change your life. Eating the right way not only prevents disease and generates good health; it creates a sense of well-being, both physically and mentally. The “sense of well-being” is what we all desire but many of us spend our lives wondering what it takes.

Although I have my strong beliefs on “what it takes,” all of which are based on scientific research, I will not take it upon my self to try and convince you of my beliefs. I urge you to read The China Study, by Dr. T. Colin Campbell, as I mentioned in my previous blog, titled “Feel Great/Be Great.” I think you’ll be amazed and enlightened from Dr. Campbell’s 40 years of research, take it to heart and, you, too will change your current dietary beliefs and habits. Although, I have met many people who refuse to read this book because they really don’t want to know that the foods they love and crave are so harmful to their health and hinder the “sense of well-being.”

What I will provide you, are a few facts on nutrition that are not controversial, they’re just not being publicized fast enough. Most important to know is the healthiest type of protein, a sacred nutrient and a vital component to our bodies, is found in a natural variety of plants. Animal protein isn’t necessarily consistent with long term health, as we’ve been led to believe for so many years. Additionally, our bodies do not naturally build shields to protect ourselves against free radicals. Fortunately, the antioxidants in plants put up the shield and sponge up those nasty substances. Uncontrolled free radical damage is part of the process that can cause cataracts, cancer, hardening of the arteries, arthritis, emphysema and many other ailments.

Reduce (or eliminate) your intake of animal protein and load up on your vegetables! It’s likely you’ll lose weight, lower your cholesterol, reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer, have more energy and finally begin to get that long, sought out, “sense” of well-being!

Stay tuned,

The Midnight Motivator

Monday, February 15, 2010

Feel Great/Be Great

There's no doubt that taking responsibility of your life, in all aspects, is the requirement, per se, to total body well-being. Making the decision to take control of your health, emotional and physical, is the first and most important step. The key to success is knowing this decision starts today and never ends, not even for a moment. When it comes right down to it, there's a sense of freedom associated with knowing, you're it; no longer can a person, place or thing influence who you are, where you are or what you're striving to become.

In my past articles I focused on our thoughts and feelings being crucial factors in one's overall health, the first step to lasting happiness. But the second and third "crucial factors" go hand in hand and cannot be ignored, diet and exercise.

In 2006, as I mentioned in my article, Learning Something New Everyday, my father passed away from lung cancer. What I didn't tell you was that the doctors discovered a "spot" on his lungs, during a short hospital stay, unrelated to cancer in November of '03 but didn't tell him about it until February of '05. The information got "misplaced." By the time he was told, the "spot" had grown into stage 4, with a 1.7% chance of survival. After I got over the shock, terror and anger, (actually, I've never totally gotten "over it") I began a crusade to save his life. Unfortunately, the cancer in my father had spread uncontrollably so even though my hours of research and devotion didn't save his life, they "saved" mine.

Through integrative doctors, Homeopaths, Acupuncturists, books, DVDs, support groups and seminars I discovered that much of the cause of our physical ailments directly stems from what we eat and our inactivity. You may think, as I did for most of my life, that you eat well and get plenty of exercise. It may shock you when you learn that most of what you eat is causing you more harm than good. In fact, many foods we've been led to believe are "healthy," are actually making us sick. Once I learned the truths about the food I once ate, I dramatically changed my diet, which consequently, changed my life.

We need energy to maximize this gift of life! It's impossible to map out a road to lasting happiness and well-being if we consistently feel sluggish, tired, overweight, chronic pain or dwell on "what's wrong," instead of "what's right." To begin your new healthy campaign and to have more energy than you ever dreamed possible, I recommend you read the book, "The China Study," by Dr. T. Colin Campbell. While you're reading, it's important to keep in mind this information is "findings from the most comprehensive study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease." (The New York Times) In addition, included in The China Study are hundreds of publications from the most reputable scientific journals.

Tomorrow I will inform you of a few "musts" but please, don't delay, take the time and "learn" how-to "feel great" because when you do, it/you will "be great."

Stay tuned,

Midnight Motivator