Recently I met someone who was unimpressed by Audra's Gardens.

They didn't say it in so many words, but being an intuitive person, I soaked their lack of enthusiasm right up.

In that same week, three other dear people in my life poured into me their sincere encouragement, on three separate occasions.

Now why was it that for two weeks I continued to marinate not in the encouraging words but in the reaction of that **ONE** who was NOT impressed?

As I processed this very question, I got a mental picture that we who are intuitive, people-pleasers are like sponges. As we go along in life, the feelings of others, and their reactions to us (or perceived(!) reactions) just naturally soak into our spirits. It can really drag you down to sit in those types of feelings. Discouragement can get stinky (SHTANKY is how we say it), like mildew in a day-old dish rag in August.

Then it occurred to me, a sponge can be SQUEEZED OUT! Just because God naturally wired me to be aware of other people's thoughts and feelings, doesn't mean that He intended for me to invite those feelings in to stay. Nope. Just this very week I started increasing my awareness of my own feelings, and when I realize I'm hanging on to other people's negativity, I mentally squeeze that dirtiness right out.

But you know what else? After a sponge has been emptied, it's in the perfect condition to soak up something ELSE. And I'm working toward soaking up these things: whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. (That's the suggestion Paul gave to the Philippians in the Bible, and it's a good one!)

For me, sometimes that means taking a stroll around to just ENJOY my flowers- their colors, their forms, the wonder of how they grow. Sometimes it's looking around to soak in the fun of my sons, to laugh with them. Or, sometimes I go over in my mind the positive things someone has said to me, or literally name my blessings. I imagine I'm soaking those things up in my sponge, and it's amazing how quickly my emotions can change to more accurately reflect the beautiful reality of my life and my business.

Today it hit home 100% when I was making my subscription bouquets for my pickup tonight. I was able to make NINE bouquets, which is my most ever in one day! (That's me, today, with my bouquets in the picture!) I remember when I used to cut my flowers and they would all fit into a McDonald's cup! I'm absolutely soaking up this little success today.

So, if you can relate. If you are an intuitive people pleaser. Do yourself and your family a favor, and use your gifts for the good of others when you can, and otherwise squeeze those negativities out & fill 'er up with pure & lovely things instead!

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