Just a Girl Lost 2

Just a girl lost~ Here I share bits & pieces of me, in poetry, prose, music & posts from writers who inspire me.

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Sun Tzu’s 31 Best Pieces Of Leadership Advice

This is a very interesting article about Sun Tzu. 

I think #21 is the most important & perhaps the most difficult.

Many of these I learned the hard way…



Sun Tzu’s 31 Best Pieces Of Leadership Advice

There was no greater war leader and strategist than Chinese military general Sun Tzu.  His philosophy on how to be a great leader and ensure you win in work, management, and life is summed up in these 33 pieces of advice.  They can all be applied by you in your job when you go back to work next week:

There was no greater war leader and strategist than Chinese military general Sun Tzu.  His philosophy on how to be a great leader and ensure you win in work, management, and life is summed up in these 33 pieces of advice.

    1. A leader leads by example, not by force.
    2. You have to believe in yourself.
    3. Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.
    4. If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.
    5. The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.
    6. Supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.
    7. If the mind is willing, the flesh could go on and on without many things.
    8. Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.
    9. To know your Enemy, you must become your Enemy.
    10. Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.
    11. Can you imagine what I would do if I could do all I can?
    12. Even the finest sword plunged into salt water will eventually rust.
    13. Engage people with what they expect; it is what they are able to discern and confirms their projections. It settles them into predictable patterns of response, occupying their minds while you wait for the extraordinary moment — that which they cannot anticipate.
    14. If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.
    15. Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory:1 He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.

      2 He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.

      3 He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks.

      4 He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.

      5 He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.

    16. Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent’s fate.
    17. Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
    18. There are not more than five musical notes, yet the combinations of these five give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard.There are not more than five primary colors, yet in combination they produce more hues than can ever been seen.There are not more than five cardinal tastes, yet combinations of them yield more flavors than can ever be tasted.
    19. Opportunities multiply as they are seized.
    20. When the enemy is relaxed, make them toil. When full, starve them. When settled, make them move.
    21. Know yourself and you will win all battles.
    22. Move swift as the Wind and closely-formed as the Wood. Attack like the Fire and be still as the Mountain.
    23. Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.
    24. When strong, avoid them. If of high morale, depress them. Seem humble to fill them with conceit. If at ease, exhaust them. If united, separate them. Attack their weaknesses. Emerge to their surprise.
    25. All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.
    26. There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare.
    27. The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.
    28. Treat your men as you would your own beloved sons. And they will follow you into the deepest valley.
    29. Build your opponent a golden bridge to retreat across.
    30. All warfare is based on deception.
    31. When you surround an army, leave an outlet free. Do not press a desperate foe too hard.


https://www.forbes.com/sites/ericjacksonSun Tzu’s 31 Best Pieces Of Leadership Advice via @forbes/2014/05/23/sun-tzus-33-best-pieces-of-leadership-advice/#3486baa35e5e


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Because I LOVE Sugar, but it doesn’t love me ~

Hey there!

I found this awesome article about how to fight against those sugar cravings that are always trying to get us in trouble.   This Thanksgiving we had so many desserts!  I think because my mom has diabetes that she decided to make EXTRA desserts so she could eat vicariously thru us!  lol    We had pumpkin/pecan pie, chocolate mousse pie, ChocolateChocolateCaramelCheesecake and a marble Bundt cake. She must have been jonesing for that sweet sweet stuff!  I was so full from eating turkey & cornbread dressing & ginger glazed curry meatballs, that I didn’t even look at the desserts until that evening. 


(my photo)

I went downstairs and took a little sample of each one. YUM… YUM… YUM!!

The bad thing is that when I woke up that morning guess what I was craving and dying for??  Dessert.  So, I ate dessert for breakfast and felt like an idiot and realized that sugar was an insidious little bugger and would always have the upper hand with me and dammit, WHY WHY WHY?????  Why Sugar?? Why are you so delicious, divine, delectable, decadent and damming?? why can I not resist you??? ugh

I am trying, as is my mother.  The fact that she made so many desserts made me realize that that woman has a sweet tooth!  I guess we all do?

It’s funny, but not funny because diabetes is a very serious disease and it’s very hard to change old habits and give up our favorite cravings.  To help my mom we are all learning how to make suger-free (using Splenda instead) and low carb desserts.   It’s good for all of us, not just her and it’s so worth taking the time to do.   Our bodies are our temples after all and we need to treat them as as such.

Hope you enjoy the article and site.









Crush Sugar Cravings With These 6 Tips

Posted by Lori Shemek; November 30, 2017

Do you feel chained to sugar and its ill effects? If you eat sugar everyday or excessively, and you want to reduce your sugar intake to promote better health, stop the bloating and fatigue, along with shifting your body into a fat burning mode (as opposed to a fat storing mode), you are ready to win the battle against the sweet stuff.

Implement These Six Tips to Achieve Sugar Freedom:


1. Use the Sugar Freedom Trifecta Plate

We all need guidelines to ensure success and the Sugar Freedom Trifecta Plate is going to help you. The best part? You are going to be adding to your plate, not taking away. You will be adding delicious healthy fats, clean lean protein and healthy fiber.

Adding these three food groups (the trifecta) will help prevent up and down blood sugar swings that happen quickly with the wrong foods. Foods such as: sugar, excess carbohydrates, white flour products, chips, processed junk foods, which all send your blood sugar crashing. What do you do when your blood sugar plummets? You go in search for that candy bar to bring your blood sugar back up as the body always needs to maintain balance. This is a key component of the sugar addiction cycle.

Every plate should have protein, fat and fiber – the Sugar Freedom Trifecta. Add in healthy proteins such chicken, wild fish, whole eggs, and grass fed beef or lamb. [Ratliff, J., Leite, J. O., de Ogburn, R., Puglisi, M. J., VanHeest, J., & Fernandez, M. L. (2010). Consuming eggs for breakfast influences plasma glucose and ghrelin, while reducing energy intake during the next 24 hours in adult men. Nutrition Research, 30(2), 96-103.]

Add in those healthy fats like nuts and seeds, creamy avocados and coconut. Then add the fiber! Avocado is an excellent choice, as you not only get the great healthy fat, but the high fiber as well. All varieties of veggies are a key fiber choice and especially leafy greens, along with chia seeds and nuts as well.

2. Engage in Interval Training

Interval training is a form of exercise that is done in short bursts and effectively triggers an endorphin and dopamine response; exactly what sugar does, however, sugar’s lasting effects promote inflammatory health conditions, including weight gain down the road.

Exercise in general promotes the ‘happiness’ neurotransmitter, serotonin. When you have plenty of serotonin, you are less likely to have cravings for sweets. However, Interval training or burst training has many benefits compared to traditional longer cardio. [https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23835594]

This quick and efficient form of exercise helps to boost metabolism for over 24 hours and takes just minutes! It helps to use up those fat-storing enzymes such as lipoprotein lipase (LPL) that essentially locks the door of our fat cells – think fat storage. Use interval training with any form of exercise such as walking, running, biking, elliptical trainer, your own body weight such as in the image below and more.

Here is a basic Interval Training example:

Go as fast as you can for 30 seconds, go back to a slow to moderate pace for 90 seconds. Repeat 8 times. That’s It!


3. Eat Something Sour

Eating anything sour such as lemon juice or apple cider vinegar can help quash sugar cravings by taking your sweet tooth away. Lemons in particular, help prevent fluctuations in blood sugar levels. One major benefit is the citric acid in lemon helps slow the conversion of carbohydrates to sugar. Lemons also contain the soluble fiber pectin that forms a gel in the stomach preventing hunger and cravings.

4. Add Supplements

Adding in specific supplements will powerfully reduce sugar cravings without relying on will power alone. This is that one time (with physician’s approval) if you are going to take supplements, will make a robust difference. The correct supplements make the whole process of crushing sugar cravings so much easier!

Here are my top 3 recommended Sugar Freedom supplements:

L-Glutamine (500 mg. twice daily) This amino acid will stop sugar cravings in their tracks.

Chromium Picolinate (400-600 mcg daily). Chromium picolinate will balance blood sugar kicking sugar cravings to the curb within three days in most cases.

Alpha Lipoic Acid (250 mg. daily). This supplement will help stabilize blood sugar levels, so you don’t get the munchies or get hungry a few hours after eating,

5. Reduce Stress

So many people are stressed with work, family and other obligations. They reach for food to soothe frazzled, anxious nerves. When you are stressed, you raise the stress hormone cortisol that lowers the feel-good neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin and that is going to send you right to the carbohydrates and sweets. The hormone cortisol is also a fat storage hormone – especially inflammatory belly fat.

The key takeaway here is to practice stress reduction every day. To effectively combat stress, we need to activate the body’s natural relaxation response.

Examples include: deep breathing (such as the 4-7-8 Technique below), a warm bath with lavender essential oil, massage, yoga, meditation or guided mediation [Schulte, Brigid. “Harvard Neuroscientist: Meditation Not Only Reduces Stress, Here’s How It Changes Your Brain.” Washington Post]specifically for stress reduction, or the #1 stress reduction technique: exercise.

We need to get moving to manage stress. Exercise is important in every facet of our health and will help to boost your feel-good endorphins making you more resilient to sugar cravings.



6. Get Crucial Sleep

Do you know what happens when we lose just one night of quality sleep? We become more insulin resistant, the ‘feel-good’ neurotransmitter serotonin is lowered, the stress hormone (belly fat hormone) cortisol is raised and after just one night of poor sleep, you are also left hungrier the next day … and it’s not for broccoli, but for high carbohydrate, sugar-laden foods. Once you get started on that cycle of using carbs such as sugar to increase energy, it will wreak havoc with your weight and health. [“New Pathways From Short Sleep to Obesity? Associations Between Short Sleep and ‘Secondary’ Eating and Drinking Behavior” by Gabriel S. Tajeu, DrPH, MPH; and Bisakha Sen, PhD in American Journal of Health Promotion.]

Make time for sleep. Incorporate 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night. If you have trouble falling asleep or wake up during the night, use this highly effective breathing 4-7-8 technique that can put you back to sleep right away:

Breath in through your nose for 4 seconds, hold for 7 seconds and exhale for 8 seconds. Repeat 6 times or as often as needed. This will make a powerful difference in reducing your sugar cravings.

These six tips have been shown to help crush even the most powerful sugar cravings. Follow them and you will begin to feel vibrant health and leaner in no time.



Lawler, David. “America’s Sugar Addiction: Just How Bad Is It?” The Telegraph.

Locker, Melissa. “Oreos May Be As Addictive As Cocaine.” Time.

Schulte, Brigid. “Harvard Neuroscientist: Meditation Not Only Reduces Stress, Here’s How It Changes Your Brain.” Washington Post.

Dinicolantonio, James, and Sean Lucan. “Sugar Season. It’s Everywhere, and Addictive.” The New York Times.

Ratliff, J., Leite, J. O., de Ogburn, R., Puglisi, M. J., VanHeest, J., & Fernandez, M. L. (2010). Consuming eggs for breakfast influences plasma glucose and ghrelin, while reducing energy intake during the next 24 hours in adult men. Nutrition Research, 30(2), 96-103.

“New Pathways From Short Sleep to Obesity? Associations Between Short Sleep and ‘Secondary’ Eating and Drinking Behavior” by Gabriel S. Tajeu, DrPH, MPH; and Bisakha Sen, PhD in American


Crush Sugar Cravings With These 6 Tips https://drlorishemek.com/crush-sugar-cravings-with-these-6-tips/ via @LoriShemek







Be a lotus flower…


“As a lotus flower is born in water, grows in water and rises out of water to stand above it unsoiled, so I, born in the world, raised in the world having overcome the world, live unsoiled by the world”


~ Buddha






I’m New



I’ve changed

the old me is in the rearview

I’ve changed

the new me drags no chains

my heart ~ my thoughts

my decisions rearranged

I’m new


from this day thru

I’m new



A new song I love and I hope you will love it as much as I do ~ xo





If Happiness is simply a chemical released in the brain

I want to figure out how to release that elusive little bit of bliss

To have the certainty of being able to pull that magical daisy chain

of only always sunshine, again & again & again.

No more to be deluged by storms of life

that every season drown my sorry heart

in tears of endless rain


I always often pray, “FIX ME! Now Now Now, please!”

I beg to be miraculously healed of all my weaknesses and flaws.

I beg to become completely whole, healthy, productive and serene.

“I NEED to be the me I am meant to be and somehow make up for ALL my selfish,

thoughtless, destructive, behaviors of the past.

Make me who I’m meant to be, please please please.”

I plead over and over.

A noble mantra (to my narcissistic mind)

prayed with the utmost contrition, angst and sincerity.

“I KNOW that You just have to answer, don’t You??

I mean,You’ve healed so many people

way worse off and way more screwed up than me, and I BELIEVE!

See, God, I believe!  So, c’mon, I’m ready now, I’m so ready now to be healed.”

I plead and plead, waiting to be freed, waiting to be transformed miraculously.

It’s not working!  I’m still the messed up, old me.

I bet I’m being ignored because I’m not determined enough!

I just need to beg and whine with more sincerity.

NOTHING … NOTHING, but the buzzing voices of my own vanity.

“I must be unfixable.  I must be too weak.  

What was I thinking?

I’m beyond healing.  

Even He can’t fix me.”

I Sink

deeper and deeper into myself & my selfishness

“MY way must be the ONLY way out of this daily abyss of discontent.

This life is all there is & so I’ll make the best of it

until I can figure out how to fix myself.”

It’s so much easier to believe in the god of Me.  

I may be doomed to mediocrity, but at least I’m ‘home’

within the familiar confines of my darkened,

broken mind.

I will always be my own place to hide. (that’s called Pride)

I’ll make sure I always have a retreat

where I can pretend be leading a ‘normal’, fulfilling happy life.

Keeping my dirty little secrets hidden inside.

Retreating into a fantasy world to forget the real world around me.

“I am a martyr, don’t they see?  Nobody understands me!  I have NEEDS!

I DESERVE to be free to be worshiped by others in my kingdom of ME.”

A place where selfishness, fear, apathy,

resentment, blame, anger, negativity & endless self-pity

are justified.

Where ‘escape’ isn’t being weak, it’s being ‘happy’.

Where I’m in control because only I know what’s best for me.

Life should be PLEASING me.

Pleasure and  Control, insidious beasts eating me up alive.

My passions & desires own me.

A me I create in the image of what I want others to see.

Emotions & feelings drive my insatiable need to be happy.

A blank page desperate for a saviour’s ink.

I’m not real unless they SEE me.

My stubborn pride, my petulant need,

my childish mind keeps me blind to all other’s reality.

“FEED ME FEED ME FEED ME because you NEED me!”

I’m dying inside. I’ve become a parasite of heart, soul & mind.


And then, through the miracle of Grace,

little by little, day by day, I begin to FEEL so DEEPLY

the pain, sadness & need for love of those around me.

Their feelings begin to matter more than my own

I am filled with longing for something

I cannot define or explain.

A warmth flows thru me.

My cold heart is melting to Love


I’m healing.

Life won’t let me declare myself neutral

in this war anymore.

I have to decide whether to fly or fight.

I no longer find surcease in my usual distractions

I’m not able to ‘delete’ & bury my conscience & justify

my infantile dissolute vanities.

I used to be able to run away with impunity

seeking out those like me.

Things are different now.

I who always arrogantly thought myself

so brave & so much stronger than others.

I see I am only a paper tiger.

A coward afraid to

face the truth.  I am words, not actions.

A fool.

Something inside of me cries out.

I’m ready to be free.

I’m ready to let the emptiness

& dark silence wash over and consume me.

I am defiant. I am tired.

I have decided with every fiber of my being that

Fear will no longer rule me.

I choose to be truly happy, joyful & free.

I walk through the valley of humble defeat.

I’m a prisoner of true Love.

I throw myself into His arms in complete, terrified,

childlike, loving trust.

I’m finally ready to let Him Be

& work through me.

I know I have no strength.

I’ve failed miserably.

I know I have to let go of the past.

I have to hold on to now and all that will be.

I’m going in blind, hands tied, Letting Him lead.

I’m dying to Me.   It’s not easy.   Not at first.

I still grieve the old me.

I have to drag myself across that bridge of doubt & lack of faith.

Without humility & complete honesty, I can’t bear to cross it.

It isn’t exactly how I’d pictured it to be, once I’d waved the

white flag,  I’d expected Him to carry me!

So tempting to slide back down that hill into my old ways.

I wanna run & hide again, but I don’t.

I stay and I run, I run, towards & unknown Fate.

I run over that bridge.  From night to day.

From comatose to wide awake.   No longer lost.

I’ve finally found my way.

And somehow I’ve changed.

I am ready to live the truth I’ve always believed,

yet was too afraid to seek.

That ‘suffering’ of this life will bring understanding,

growth & healing and will lead to a happiness

far beyond what my human nature can ever dare to imagine.

That ‘fixing’ means changing & becoming unbroken

into a divine, unique creation of me as part of the human family.

For, how can we know true peace if we only think of

our own wants and needs?

So, now I pray for wisdom & patience

for hope & fortitude

I pray for humility and gratitude

I pray to let go of all fear and control

I pray for the strength to leap into the abyss

of complete and utter trust, always.

To never falter again.  To step out over the precipice

of my fallen, miserable comfort zone

into the arms of an unimaginable

mystical, unthinkable, beautiful

and all possible unknown.

It’s a never ending journey of self-discovery

Self-inflicted tortures of silence & reflection

Looking in mirrors of past pains soul deep

Breaking off dirty, bloody pieces until, suddenly,

like a dandelion in the wind, my soul flies beyond me

no longer imprisoned ready to rise higher.

Uncaged, unfettered, uncovered & free

to allow in a deeper, more perfect level of

all that is truly good & beautiful.

To Love unconditionally my children & my family

To see the divinity in others

To see the exquisite perfection & magic in mundane things

And no matter what trials, disappointments & pain

this life brings, I’ll be able to dance in the rain

I’ve forever changed.

I’ll still mess up again

and slip back and lose my peace, but

I will always know & believe

that Happiness lives

in my Loving the world

outside & inside of me.




*photo mine.  St. Peter’s Catholic Church Cemetery in Carencro, Louisiana


I See


When the earth is veiled beneath magic

Heaven’s water droplets of fog

A mist brings blindness to the corruption of man

That’s when my heart flees from my mind

My body sighs as it follows my whims

My racing legs meet wet grass amidst tombstones

I cannot be without the within

of this place of fairy tales and greys

this place where time stands still

where spirits play

where every intrusion disappears

and all that’s left is purity of nothingness

Purity of silence that used to be

before civilizations cacophony

blazed trails of destruction

I feel the dew drip upon me

surrounding me in pieces of soul

of ghosts disembodied yet whole

and for once, for one brief moment,

I am at peace

I see only nature without beams & wires

without man made contrivances

I see only Beauty of lives in an eternal earth

beneath a sun that forever lives

I see me, you, us, all in a dream that is the true reality



*photo mine



Dreamers ~ Quote by Harriet Tubman

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer.

Always remember, you have within you the strength,

the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

~Harriet Tubman




©justagirllost2 ~ M. Mendez

*photo from Pinterest. If you know the photographer, please let me know.