Hola, Jolene Navarro here. As romance authors, I believe we have the power to make the world a better place one book at a time. We do it with gratitude, hope and love. In my October 15th release The Texan’s Surprise Return Selena De La Rosa, the heroine gets her greatest Christmas gift.
She is a single mother of triplets, helps run the family business and serves on the city council. She lives her life-giving to others. She wants to create the best Christmas ever, not just for her sons, but for the whole community that has supported her after the death of her husband.
Before Thanksgiving she gets the biggest surprise she never expected. Her husband that has been dead for almost three years walks back into her life.
Romance gives the reader a feeling of hope and joy. I love writing heroines live with a grateful mindset. Despite her struggles, Selena looked for ways to stay positive and give thanks. These stories remind me that in real life I need to strive for a daily attitude of gratitude.
Saturday I spent the day celebrating women at the Feel Good Day hosted by Harlequin. The day was full of laughter with some of my family, my writing friends and members of the OSRbook club in San Antonio. We had so much fun. Robyn Carr, Brenda Jackson, Susan Mallery were the featured authors and were a true inspiration.
I had the honor of co-facilitating a Sharing Gratitude workshop with Holly Castillo.
Each participant stuffed a Blessing Box for the Women of Valor program. The boxes were filled with uplifting Harlequin books and a hand-colored postcard from each attendee. These boxes will be sent out via Soldier’s Angles throughout the year to serve as encouragement for the women and caretakers of San Antonio’s wounded, ill and injured service members.
We started with clearing our minds than going over five ways of living a life with a grateful mindset. We finished the session with the boxes. I want to thank Harlequin for giving us the opportunity to give to the caregivers that give so much of their lives to care for the wounded soldiers.
- Gratitude Journal– small, big, single words, pictures, drawings, items. Each day fill a small or big journal with the blessings that give you joy.
- Say Thank You. In daily prayers and with the people in your life say thank you. Take time to recognize the people that help you with the big and little things. Write it down in a thoughtful note or just say the simple words. It also gives you an immediate feeling of joy.
- Create a reminder that gives you an immediate burst of joy. Put a song on your phone, or a whole playlist that reminds you of what joy feels like. Shopify even makes it easy with a playlist and you can build your own too. A string on your wrist, a picture in a spot you see it several times. I have a family picture under a clear case on my phone. I have a friend that does a Monday Motivation post on social media. If you can find a way to shift your brain into a positive grateful thought for three to five sec a day it will make an impact in the long run.
- Volunteer. It always seems someone else is doing better – it’s a trap. Stepping outside yourself and volunteering is important to building a thankful way of living. Once you see what others are struggling with you may see that you have more to be grateful for than you thought.
- Choose an App. We have a whole world at the tip of our fingers with the internet. I have three apps to recommend but there are so many. And if one doesn’t work for you then uninstall and try another. ***”I AM” This one sends random positive quotes throughout the day. These can help break through the negativity of the day. You set how often you receive one and you can create your own. ***”Presently”A simple way to record something you’re grateful for each day. Just a quick line. ***”Bliss Gratitude Journal by John De Mott has several options and exercises to help build a gratitude mindset. One is recording what you are thankful for and why. It has exercises in Best Possible Future, Could be Worse, Honoring People, Three Good things, Transforming Problems, Meaning in Work and Savoring. This is powerful stuff for living your best life.
There are so many people that spent the day at the Fell Good event have my life richer and fuller.
My family. This is my sister Tracye Ward and my daughter Storm Navarro along with friend Ariel Lee.
There were women from a local book club I love. We meet once a month and talk about nothing but books. Love these ladies and their passion for romance. The Old School Romance Book Club San Antonio.
Then there were the women that have supported me and got me through the roller coaster of the publishing industry. The label friend doesn’t even touch on what they are to me. San Antonio Romance Authors. Makenna Lee, Teri Wilson, Jolene Navarro, Laura Glueck, Sasha Summers and Holly Castello.
Do you have an app or activity that helps you stay focus on the blessing in your life?
Please share what you are thankful for.