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Our Favorite Things – May

We skipped April favorites, which means I had an even harder time narrowing down my favorites for the month! We couldn't be more excited about welcoming summer! We're here to celebrate the progress that's been made, and to share a few of the things that have helped us cultivate joy, make progress on our goals, and live more purposeful days this month. We'd love for you to share what has helped you in your PowerSheets progress, too–just drop a note in the comments!

  1. You don't have to spend much time around the Cultivate office to know we're big fans of the Emily Ley team! They launched their 2017-2018 Simplified Planners earlier this month, and they are pretty dreamy! Even better than the gorgeous covers is the way each page (whether you use daily or weekly) helps you cultivate what matters most in the simplest way, hence the name :) Their mission is to inspire women to organize, simplify, and carve white space for the good stuff of life is why our team uses Emily's planners each day.
  2. After my one and only pair of summer sandals bit the dust a few weeks ago, I received a new pair as a gift, and I've had a hard time taking them off. One of my personal 2017 PowerSheets goals is to simplify and be happier with less, and these sandals are the perfect replacement. They're certainly an investment, but I know they'll last much longer than a pair of Target sandals (and they're ethically made!)
  3. Lara has long used the Things app to manage her running to-do list (in conjunction with Asana), and she was recently asked to beta test the new version (Things 3) and has been singing its praises. So much so, in fact, that a few ladies in the office have started using it too.
  4. Our new Workplace Health Initiative has all of us up and moving during the workday, but Lara took it to a whole new level with a stepper for her standing desk. We rotate using it during our team meetings to get some extra steps on our Fitbits.
  5. I have a bit of a confession for y'all. I love love love when PowerSheets go on sale each fall, but there's something about watching you set mid-year goals that has me even more excited! I love seeing our Undated Six-Month PowerSheets showing up on your doors and watching you dig in. Now is the perfect time to start if you want to snag a set from our shop before we sell out!
  6. Lara has recently starting preparing her garden for planting, and I must say, it's so fun to pull up every day and see the progress! Her Floret Flower seeds are the ones I'm most eagerly waiting to bloom! (Psst: If you tend to have a brown thumb like me, there is hope! Lara shared her Gardening 101 series on her blog and it is a great place to start!)
  7. This final one admittedly doesn't have much to do with my PowerSheets goals, but it has been a game-changer. I recently purchased a 6-foot phone charging cord, and having the extra length has been so helpful when I need to charge my phone at work but keep it nearby so I can see all your wonderful social comments!

What "things" are helping you make progress on your goals this month? We'd love to hear so we can add them to our lists!

 

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Our Favorite Things – March

Today is the last day of March, and we couldn't be more excited about welcoming spring! We're here to celebrate the progress that's been made, and to share a few of the things that have helped us cultivate joy, make progress on our goals, and live more purposeful days this month. We'd love for you to share what has helped you in your PowerSheets progress, too–just drop a note in the comments!

  1. Lara officially released the cover of her second book Cultivate last week, and we have been blown away by all the kind words and support from our friends! Our team has watched her pour her heart into this book, and we know her words are going to be an encouragement to many! Preorder your copy today!
  2. If you're fans of Fixer Upper, you're probably no stranger to HGTV's newest show: Home Town. Erin and Ben shared their home tour, plus lots of thoughtful insight about marriage, on the Southern Weddings blog almost three years ago. Now we couldn't be more thrilled to support the launch of their new show! We love learning more about their heart for their work and their sweet hometown, Laurel, MS.
  3. Our friend Erin from Floret Flower still has seeds available for purchase if you're looking to exercise your green thumb this year. Both Lara and Amber have planted some, and we can't wait to see what they look like when they start to sprout!
  4. Many of the Cultivate ladies own a Fujifilm Instax Camera, and we love them! I received mine for Christmas last year, and after realized I didn't carry it around as often as I'd like, I bought this case to protect it! Now I can easily throw it in my bag when I head out for a fun adventure.
  5. I never considered myself a gardener until I joined the Cultivate team, but the ladies with the green thumbs have me dreaming about the next plant I want to invest in (aka try to keep alive). One of the things Lara and Amber have taught me about gardening is the story a garden tells, and the Joyful Garden Planner is the perfect way to capture that story year after year!
  6. A recurring monthly PowerSheets goal of mine is to read three books. This month, one of my books was Love Lives Here by Maria Goff. It was a beautiful reminder of the importance of living life with intentionality, passionate purpose, and reaching outward to others. It fit perfectly with one of my 2017 PowerSheets goals to love others well!
  7. One of Nicole's PowerSheets goals for this year has been on my mind a lot recently–to purchase most of her non-consumable items from shops that have a social purpose. It has convicted me to think more closely about using my purchasing power for good. With the warm weather sticking around NC now, it's time to replace my broken summer sandals. Thanks to Nicole's recommendation, I'm adding Sseko crossover sandals to my list!
Tell us: what "things" are helping you make progress on your goals this month? We'd love to hear so we can add them to our lists!
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Our Favorite Things – February

Today's the last day of February! We're here to celebrate the progress that's been made, and to share a few of the things that have helped us cultivate joy, make progress on our goals, and live more purposeful days this month. We'd love for you to share what has helped you in your PowerSheets progress, too - just drop a note in the comments!

  1. One of my monthly PowerSheets goals repeats each month–read three books. Book of the Month Club helps me do just that! BOTM is a subscription service that announces five book selections at the beginning of the month. Many of them are familiar ones, some are ones you might not have heard of, and sometimes they are exclusive titles. You choose one, and they ship it directly to your door! It's an easy way to ensure I know one of my three books for the month!
  2. The Cultivate What Matters manifesto has encouraged our team all month long, and we love having an official manifesto to cheer us on as we continue to make little by little progress on our goals!
  3. We passed a cold around the office this month, and Harney and Son's Hot Cinnamon Spice Tea was exactly what I needed during my workdays! I'm not a big tea drinker, but it was a perfect way to soothe my throat.
  4. Starbucks recently released their limited edition Lilly Pulitzer S'well water bottles. I'm usually not a fan of bright colors, but even I wouldn't mind carrying my water around in one of these! They're only available in stores, and they're disappearing quickly, so don't miss your chance to grab one if you see it! Psst: If you pick up a spare bottle, send me an email because there are a few Lilly-loving ladies on our team who I know would love to buy one from you :)
  5. Our Square Inspiring Desk Card sets are coming back to the shop in the coming weeks! These sweet cards are the perfect dose of color for your bulletin boards, so stay tuned!
  6. In an attempt to take better care of my body, I've recently started washing my face when I get home from work if I don't have evening plans, and this face wash has become a favorite of mine!
  7. My friend Nora has started selling her embroidery online. I love her goal behind her creations–to produce pieces that bring delight! Wouldn't these be the sweetest housewarming gift for a new neighbor?
  8. One of Nicole's 2017 goals is to take more photos, and we love that Artifact Uprising makes it easy to record your memories with their vast variety of photo book options!
  9. We're growing our team! The Cultivate and Southern Weddings team is looking forward to meeting our newest Editor and Customer Delight Associate! Applications close Friday, March 3rd, so don't delay!

Tell us: what "things" are helping you make progress on your goals this month? We'd love to hear so we can add them to our lists!

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What’s Saving My Life Right Now?

If you spend any time around me, you know that I'm an avid reader! I could talk your ear off about the books that I'm reading, how much I love my public library, and my favorite subscription box (spoiler alert: it involves books, not make-up!) Each year, one of my favorite bloggers writes a post in the middle of winter about what's saving her life right now? A few years ago, in the middle of the cold and grey days of winter, she adopted a habit of keeping a list–an actual, physical, pen and paper list–of the things that were actively giving her life in the middle of her least favorite season.

The idea actually comes from Barbara Brown Taylor's memoir Leaving Church. In her book, Taylor shares about a time she was invited to speak, and her host assigned her this topic: “Tell us what is saving your life right now." Most of us know what’s killing us, and can articulate it, if asked. But few of us stop to note what’s giving us life. Taylor says it’s too good a question to not revisit every once in a while: What are the things—big or small—that are saving us?

In fact, if you've followed Lara's Goal-Setting Series, you know that one of her 2017 goals is to live a year of radical gratitude and praise. This goal came out of her realization that she had been doing a lot of complaining recently, and that complaints are often clues; they reveal to us places in our heart where we aren't trusting. Her goal resonated with me because I've noticed the heaviness of our current climate weighing on many of those around me.

When she announced she was a hosting a link-up today, I thought it would be great for conversation within the Cultivate community, especially considering Punxsutawney Phil just forecasted six more weeks of winter for us all!

Here are a few things that are saving my life right now. I hope you'll share your lists below in the comments!

  1. Space Heater - Turning my space heater on in the mornings makes it easier to get out of bed in the winter, particularly if I have a 6am exercise class scheduled. I'm not ashamed to admit that I've been known to carry it from room to room in my house :)
  2. Six-Month Undated PowerSheets - While I'm a big fan of our One-Year Dated PowerSheets (which are sold out for the year!), one of the things I love about our Six-Month Undated Workbooks is the ability to start right where you are. We often say in the office, "There's nothing magical about January 1st!" to encourage friends to start cultivating what matters right then, and these PowerSheets Workbooks are the perfect tool for them! It's easy to start the year excited with big intentions and goals, but it can sometimes feel overwhelming to try to plan out action steps to make those happen. My PowerSheets (I have a work and personal set) give me a daily touchpoint to check in and make sure that how I'm spending my time is purposeful. We've opened preorders for a small batch of Six-Month Workbooks that are expected to ship in May, arriving just in time for June goal-setting. I hope you'll join us in living your most purposeful year yet!
  3. The Center for Civil and Human Rights - I visited the Center for Civil and Human Rights Museum in Atlanta last weekend for the first time, and I left speechless. According to their website, their purpose "is to create a safe space for visitors to explore the fundamental rights of all human beings so that they leave inspired and empowered to join the ongoing dialogue about human rights in their communities." The museum is engaging and interactive, and I read almost every word throughout each exhibit. It can be easier to look at some of the dark moments of our nation's history and want to turn a blind eye, but the final exhibit of the museum invites visitors to step into the hard work of thinking critically about what role they can play in changing the course of our future. It's worth a visit if you're ever nearby!
  4. Goody Large Claw Clips - I have good intentions each morning when I fix my hair for it to stay down, but by the end of the day it often ends up in a bun on top of my head! I had one favorite hair clip that I loved (it has plastic grips on the inside so your hair doesn't fall out!), and when it broke last year at MTH, I was incredibly sad because I hadn't been able to find the exact same ones! Unbeknownst to me, the sweet Rhi Bosse overheard me and happened to find them in her local Walgreens once she got back home. She sent me the sweetest video and a few days later, I got one of the best pieces of happy mail I've received!
  5. Asana - The Cultivate Team started using Asana last year, and it has been one of the best decisions we've made as a company! Our email inboxes have stopped filling up with to-dos, tasks aren't falling through the cracks, and we have a clear plan for what the next year looks like mapped out for everyone to see. Best part? It's free!
  6. Washing my face when I get home - I wish I could remember who first told me this trick a few months ago, but I've happily adopted it! If I don't have evening plans after work, I'll immediately wash my face when I get home. Not only does this help me unwind for the evening, but it also prevents me from talking myself out of washing my face late at night when I'm ready for bed, which I've been known to do more often than I should!
  7. Meaningful conversations - One of our daily PowerSheets goals at work is to have meaningful conversations. The ability to pause work for a moment to discuss a variety of things–whether they are work-related or not–gives our team an opportunity to step away from the to-do lists and re-energize. Not to mention it creates relationship equity!
  8. Amen Paper Co. - Our friends at Amen Paper Co. continue to surprise us with the products they are creating! Their Advent Devotional was not just beautifully done, but full of wonderful truths from some incredible women (including Lara!) throughout the holiday season. They launched their Lent Devotional yesterday, and we can't wait to get our hands on a copy!
  9. Enneagram - If you enjoy personality tests like Myers-Brigg and Strengths Finder, allow me to introduce you to the Enneagram! Most personality typologies explain “what” you do. The Enneagram, on the other hand, goes much deeper and explains “why you do what you do.” OnceI figured out my personality type, reading my profile was spot on (the negative things were cringeworthy because they were all so true!) This book is an easy and fun read and does a great job explaining the nine different personality types. Like any other personality test, this is an excellent exercise for team-building.
  10. Remembering that our words carry weight - This article reminded me that we have the capability to do good with the words we use, and listening to the words of others (particularly those who are not like us) can open our eyes to a new perspective.

There's an excerpt from my list, and now I want to hear from you: what's saving your life right now? Big or small, share below in the comments!

This post contains some Amazon affiliate links. No extra cost to you, but it helps us raise funds for Love One Another Project!

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Our Favorite Things – January

Today's the last day of January! We're here to celebrate the progress that's been made, and to share a few of the things that have helped us cultivate joy, make progress on our goals, and live more purposeful days this month. We'd love for you to share what has helped you in your PowerSheets progress, too - just drop a note in the comments!

  1. Our PowerSheets, of course! Have you done your prep work for February yet? If not, set aside some time in the next few days! (Don't have PowerSheets? Preorder a set here, and then get started for the next few months with Lara's free goal setting series.)
  2. Our whole team has a pair of soft cotton pajamas from LAKE, and they're pretty much all we wear to sleep these days! They're on the spendier side, but sometimes you need to treat yo'self :)
  3. In a crowded market, our friend Lindsay Letters still managed to create a beautiful product that truly stands out. If you've loved Lindsay's style for as long as we have, you'll love getting the chance to add your own color to her letters in her new coloring book, Sweeter Than Honey!
  4. Nicole is a big fan of this no-knead bread recipe. Perfect for keeping you busy on cold winter days, and as an unconventional Valentine's Day present for friends!
  5. Do any of your 2017 goals involve learning something new? From creative writing to cooking to sewing to photography, if you want to learn about, Skillshare probably has a class to teach you about it. They're all taught by experts, and they often run specials (like three months of unlimited class time for just $.99!).
  6. Lara and I both got FitBits at the beginning of the year (mine is an Alta and I think hers is a Charge 2), and our office has never been the same! The circle of open space around our central table has been newly dubbed "the track" :) We are both loving the reminders to get up and move!
  7. For those hoping to spend more intentional time with their kids or significant others, might we recommend going low-tech? These beautiful playing cards are perfect for dreary winter days, and will spruce up your next game of Rummy or Go Fish.
  8. For those trying out Whole30 or who just want to eat a bit healthier in the new year, I highly recommend trying this roasted butternut squash soup. Just a few ingredients, easy to make, and SO delicious!!

Tell us: what "things" are helping you make progress on your goals this month? We'd love to hear so we can add them to our lists!

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