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Be careful the environment you choose for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose for you will become like them. W. Clement Stone

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I've been thinking a lot lately about how the people I choose to spend time with - both online and in real life - and  the environment I  choose affects me and my ability to reach my goals. In the past few months, I've been writing about topics I'm not particularly proud of because they are popular and bring in the most readers. 

Although I've enjoyed the added revenue, I've found myself drifting further and further from the things that matter to me. As I dabbled in writing celebrity gossip and reality tv reviews, I soon discovered that in order to write it, you have to live it. That's something I'm not willing to do. I have a friend who is wildly successful at it and I envy her ability to somehow put it all in perspective and enjoy what she does.

Filling my mind with gossip and the misfortune of others has taken me down a path that I don't want to go. The environment and the people began to mold my thinking and I can't let that happen.

You see, I love my cozy little life filled with images of flowers and herbs (yes, I am garden writer, too). I love encouraging others to reach for their goals. I love writing about touchy-feely new age topics, reading good books, and growing plants in my greenhouse. 

Be on guard today for ways you may be sabotaging your own success by staying in environments and associating with people that may hinder your success. Look carefully to those around you and choose friends and environments that build you up instead of tear you down.

Today, I am grateful for the freedom to pursue my dreams, for the ability to see the way, and the wisdom to choose my path wisely. I am grateful for the positive people in my life who always look to the good in others, for warm hearts that are willing to share, and for the insight to guide my way.
I am grateful for the winter sun that grows stronger everyday, for the blue sky that brightens the day and for night stars that fill me with wonder. I am grateful for nourishing food, a cozy, warm house, and family to share my world. 
I am grateful for opportunities to grow and learn, for good books to challenge the mind, and for music to sooth the soul. I am grateful for lavender-vanilla candles to bath my world in scent, for hot coffee, and for fuzzy socks that keep my feet warm.
And, I am grateful for you, dear reader, as you stop to share my day. May you be ever careful of the environment and friends you choose, as you go forward in the direction of your dreams. 

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