From the series: Life on Dog Hill

Marc and Angel Hack Life is a blog written by a young couple who share their thoughts and insights on life. Their focus is to make the reader really think. The recent posting 95 Question to Help you Find Meaning and Happiness not only made me think, it prompted me into action!

Ninety-five questions are a lot to think about and as I read through them I began to wonder if my children would know how I would respond. That gave me the idea to answer all 95 questions as honestly as I could and put them in a file where, one day, the kids would come across them. Then, I thought, they would know their mother!

Suddenly I realized that I wanted my kids know me now, while I’m still amongst the living! (I’m guessing my husband pretty much has me pegged.) So, while I’ll still print and save a copy of the answers in my files, I’ve also decided to answer these 95 questions and share them on my blog over the next few weeks.

As you read through, I hope you will think about how you would answer the questions. Jot down a few notes to yourself such as the kind of questions that are easy for you to answer and which ones are hardest. Do you think that the people who matter most to you would know how you would answer? If not, perhaps you might consider this process for yourself!

Here’s my best shot at the first 20. Kids, pay attention!

1) In one sentence, who are you?

I am Sheila.

Okay, I need more than one sentence. I am Sheila. I don’t always follow directions. I love life, family, friends, dogs and chickens… I love the trees, grass and rocks. It’s probably disgusting to some at how much love is in my heart. But it is real and it is flowing. I can sense other’s feelings and cry when I feel their pain. I sometimes laugh at the wrong times. I spent a lot of years trying to be perfect and please others before I realized that the only person I needed to satisfy was myself.

Message to my kids: It doesn’t matter what you do in life, what kind of career you have or how much money you have in the bank. What matters most is that you be your best you doing what you love best.

2) Why do you matter?

I matter because I’m genuine. Being genuine means that any interaction I have with any other being (animals and nature included) is authentic. And that matters a lot — not only to the being on the receiving end, but also to me.

Message to my kids: If you matter to you, then it won’t matter if you matter to others.

3) What is your life motto?

I’ve had a number of life mottos as I’ve evolved through different stages of my life. Growing up I remember believing that “hard work pays off.” That was my life motto until I realized that it took more than hard work to get what I wanted in life. Then my motto became “attitude is everything.”

“Roll with the punches.”

“Stay true to my goal.”

“Go above and beyond,” so that I’m giving the best of myself rather than playing down to someone’s expectations.

My motto these days is simple: “Dream big and believe!” And, why not? There is power in visualizing what I want this life to be. There is even more power in feeling the joy of having satisfied the dream before it has even fully manifested itself!

Message to my kids: I’ve become much wiser with years, so just go with my latest life motto and you’ll be in good shape.

4) What’s something you have that everyone wants?

I have a spouse that brings me coffee in bed every morning. Not only that, he’s sweet, funny, supportive of my dreams, loving and loyal. OMG! Isn’t that everyone’s dream???

Message to my kids: True love is not something you have, it’s something you share.

5) What is missing in your life?

Only the things I can’t control… A million sales (yet) of my book, Truth Runs Deep. My elder dog Sandy’s ability to get around and maintain continence. Fully funded college funds for my three youngest children. You know, the little things… Fortunately, the most important things I already have through the love of my husband and children and that’s what matters most.

Message to my kids: Gap mentality is thinking about what you don’t have. Abundance mentality is thinking about all that has yet to manifest. See #3 above: Dream big and believe!

6) What’s been on your mind most lately?

I can’t lie. Selling a million copies of my book, Truth Runs Deep. Wanna help me get there? Smile!

Message to my kids: I’ve got sales figures on all of you and your youngest brother is outselling all the rest of you put together! Elevator speeches everyone!!

7) Happiness is a ________?

Morning coffee with the man I love. All of the kids around the dinner table. A walk in the woods behind my house. Meeting my youngest son at the bus stop after school. Finding a bargain at the local thrift shop. Surprises that delight!

Message to my kids: Don’t let a day go by without thinking of at least one thing for which you can be grateful. No matter how your day went, going to bed with gratitude in your heart is the best insurance for good sleep and waking up with a positive attitude.

8) What stands between you and happiness?

The only thing that can stand in between me and happiness is me. Fortunately, I scare the shit out of myself so I usually get what I want. And that makes me happy!

Message to my kids: If you answer “My Mom” to this question, I will seriously ground you for life. Seriously.

9) What do you need most right now?

I’m good. Really.

Message to my kids: Allow me to answer this for you… Jessica, Katy and JJ you need more big dreams. Nathaniel, Alex, Serg and Ryan you need more GOOD GRADES.

10) What does the child inside you long for?

To be able to fly. When I was nine years old, I dreamed I could fly. I’ve longed to do so ever since.

Message to my kids: Remember your dreams for they wash treasures upon the shores of your waking mind.

11) What is one thing right now that you are totally sure of?

I’m totally sure that I’m happier now than I’ve ever been.

Message to my kids: Being totally sure of anything is never easy. If you can be sure of who you are and what makes you happiest, that’s a great start!

12) What’s been bothering you lately?

Nothing. I don’t let things hang over my head. However, I have been procrastinating my house-hold chores. Does that count?

Message to my kids: Contrast in our lives is good. When things are bothering you, it’s giving you a clear indication of what you don’t like or don’t want in your life. Once you know what you do like and do want, see #3 above: Dream big and believe!

13) What are you scared of?

Peeing my pants. Nursing homes. Losing a loved one. Crap like that.

Message to my kids: The best way to counter fear is to admit it.

14) What has fear of failure stopped you from doing?

Nothing. I always get there eventually.

Message to my kids: And so will you!

15) What will you never give up on?

Myself. I’m a work in progress!

Message to my kids: I’ve never been a proponent of giving up, but I do admit there are times when it’s appropriate to adjust one’s expectations. There’s no shame in that!

16) What do you want to remember forever?

How it feels to be loved!

Message to my kids: As trite as it may sound, love really does make the world go ‘round! Oh! I’m a poet and didn’t know it!

17) What makes you feel secure?

My husband and children.

Message to my kids: Life’s goal should not be to always feel secure but rather to know from whence your security comes. That way, you can live your life exploring the fullest extent of your possibilities!

18) Which activities make you lose track of time?

Reading, writing and organizing.

Message to my kids: Drinking or playing video games does NOT count!

19) What’s the most difficult decision you’ve ever made?

The most difficult decision I ever made was to leave my first husband.

Message to my kids: There are different kinds of difficult decisions. There are decisions of the head and decisions of the heart. Sometimes, the head and the heart totally disagree. In such cases, always trust your heart because you’re head is guided by ego but your heart is guided by spirit.

20) What’s the best decision you’ve ever made?

The most difficult one, obviously. I would’t have found the man of my dreams otherwise.

Message to my kids: Good decisions serve you endlessly.

I hope you’ll click back next week for the next 20 questions — they’re tough ones! Until then, who are you in one sentence? And yes, it’s okay to break the rules!

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