All Natural: Being 100% You - featuring @sarahpaine and @strangerarraysteemCreated with Sketch.

in life •  last year

About 2 years ago, my wife Sarah and I, @strangerarray, started writing this little book to encourage living an authentic life.

All Natural
Image Source

We never quite finished the book then, because we were busy with our MBA program, but now we have the time and want to share it here first on steemit!

The book isn’t very long, but it shares our personal stories about how to live a better life.

Nothing in this book is earth shattering news, but more of a personal story about what we’ve found helpful and want to share with you in the hopes it can help your life too!

So with that in mind, please enjoy the following Introduction to All Natural: Being 100% You!

Helping Hands
Image Source


A notification. Someone sent me a Google hangouts message.



I knew it was my wife. And I knew I was about to fall asleep. Sorry honey, as much as I love you, I wasn't about to answer the message. I didn't have my phone within reach and the computer was all the way on the desk, a whole four feet from me!

In our over-connected world, it is easier than ever to lose sight of who you are.

With status updates and constant notifications vying for your attention, saying life is full of distractions is an understatement.

The other day I was at the grocery store. The cashier had her cell phone out and was texting. She stopped and put her phone down as I walked up. She greeted me pleasantly. Then processed my order quickly. Finally, she sent me off with a friendly “have a nice day” when the order was finished.

At first, my old way of thinking had me complaining “get off your phone and pay attention”.

Then I rethought it.

Why not?

I got the same if not better service than from people not on their phones. I mean the checkout process usually is boring and awkward. I know I have been a cashier myself. With cell phones everywhere I am not sure if the company just doesn't want to fight it. Or if fighting against it is even necessary.

Speaking of phones I had an idea for an app or feature to be able to pause or delay receiving text messages for a specified period of time. Maybe this exists. Let me know if it does. If not, the feature could be used for times such as driving or sleeping at night, or while napping, while at work, or anytime you don't want to be interrupted.

Think about it.

Phones can be an obstacle sometimes in relationships.

Online we all have carefully crafted and manicured profiles that are not always a true reflection of the person behind the screen.

There are countless selfies. Numerous braggies. Photos with all types of filters. Boards full of pins. Endless posts. Mountains of likes. Options to favorite or heart. The almighty share!

There seems to be no end to the ways we “connect” socially online.

But what about your life OFF-line?

How is that going?

Are you comfortable in your own skin? I know sometimes I'm not. Are you dieting and exercising? Sure, most of the time. Are you socially active IRL (in real life)? I try to be, but more often than not I am at home. Are you active in the dating scene or (un)happily married? We are thankfully happily married.

Why the 3rd degree or 21 questions you ask?

We want to get at something that is bothering us and maybe you too.

It is the lack of authenticity. We live in a skeptics dream world. Are those pictures photoshopped or filtered? Is that news, post, blog, list or quiz true?

Navigating the world can be tough at times. Often times we have someone we can go to for help or advice, but that is not always the case.

What do you do then?

We have an idea for you.

We want to let you know that this is about taking leadership of your own life.

We are not suggesting ways of fixing yourself but are offering ideas that have helped us on our journey.

The rest of this book will be full of our life stories and attempts at encouragement. These strategies and suggestions are not formulas to become successful. We have no secrets of the rich. No step by step plan to get out of debt. Or to lose weight. Or to get your romance going.

However, we think that when you are All Natural you will:

  • Improve your outlook on life
  • Build inner confidence
  • Make your life happier
  • Set yourself up to be more creative and positive
  • Free up your time so you are less focused on fixing yourself
  • And hopefully, encourage yourself to spend more time helping others!

We believe that is important to have a solid foundation of personal well-being.

We believe that you can achieve this with a little focus, determinations and good old-fashioned gumption. In our short time together, we will walk you through some of the major pitfalls we have experienced with hopes that you can avoid them. Or recover from them like we have. Healing takes time, but laughter helps.

We will begin with the first chapter on What’s Good For Others Might Be Killing You. In this chapter, we will show you why you are unique and should not try to live your life as someone else. Having mentors and role-models is a great practice. But when the rubber hits the road, you are responsible for your own life and its outcomes.

We will also propose a way to define success in your own terms. Other people may want to be millionaires, but do you? Do you have to own a house and have two cars and children? We explore alternative goal setting and living outside the norm. Lastly, we will encourage you all to live beyond the “American Dream”.

In Establishing Your Currency we implore you to rethink value. Monetary value. Social capital. Relationships. Time. Dreams. Drive. Adventure. There is more to life than living paycheck to paycheck. Discover with us why perusing alternative currencies will help you to be All Natural. Ultimately, we hope you find something of value worth trading with others to build up other's lives above your own.

Avoiding Burn Out speaks for itself. Most all of us have been there. We are beyond stuck. We are burnt out! There is no more gas left in the tank. There is no more juice left in the battery. Some other cheesy metaphor to make my point. In this chapter, we will explore how to stop being a superhero (+) and/or a martyr ( - ). To make this part of your life you will have to be able to say “No” to people you love and care about and it may take hitting the reset button (a time or two, or three...).

We want you to start building margin into your life. This will give you time for self-care.

Which leads us to Playing Alone: Finding Individual Activities And Hobbies. Here we will share why we believe that building margin into your life allows for leisure and why that is a good thing. We explore why you should play and discover what moves you.

Finally, we will close with some parting thoughts. Hopefully, on the other side, you will find value in being truly All Natural.

P.S. -- The plan is to post one chapter a week every Saturday until the book in complete. Thanks and check back then!

Stay tuned. Stay interesting. Stay Strange.


Created by Michael Paine

Follow me @strangerarray and donate because you are All Natural!

See the latest adventures and creations from my wife Sarah on steemit!

Also Check Out Some of My Previous Post:

Do you want to take out a loan to consolidate debt?

If you use my Credible Referral link, you can get a cash bonus if you take out a loan.

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  

Saying No is A Lifesaver!


Yes, although not always easy, especially to loved ones, at the end of the day it benefits everyone when you take proper care of youself!



Thank you for your support and check back next Saturday for the next installment!

Braggies. lol. I likes ;)

Thanks for the share! Sometimes, in this fast paced life, we need to be reminded ♡


Thank you!