2019 has been a year.......
After writing about my journey in 2018 I thought it was important to take some time to think about my journey in 2019.
I find too often that I let my experiences control my life and I forget that I don't have to allow that to happen. 2018 threw me for a big loop and I allowed it to get out of control. It took a trip to the ER in September for me to push pause, slow down and really take a look at my path and current direction of my choices.
I have always enjoyed journaling and I created a weekly journal that I can use as a form of reflection and personal guidance. It has been a good exercise for me, I am not always dedicated to it, but every time I find my way back to that journal I am thankful for the time and energy that I choose to give to it.
So what has my 2019 journey taught me?
I have learned to focus on what is really important to me.
My family is so important. I didn't quite realize this until I saw the breakdown and struggle of families in our circle of friends. My job is my job, it doesn't come before time with my family. I will dedicate to it what I need to in order to fulfill the requirements, but I will not give it more than it needs. Too often I was answering emails and phone calls at home during my "family time". I do not need to be a member of several boards and committees. I took the emails off my phone, I put my phone away when I come home and I choose to be present with my family when I am home. My daughters are in grades 11 & 12, I don't have a lot of time with them while they are living at home. A new reality of parenting is right around the corner, I am going to enjoy this time and be the Mom they need right now in this time of their lives. This is a decision that I will never regret, I believe that by building into this time now will only further our relationship after they go out into the world.
Not only am I building into my daughters but also my husband as well. How often I see couples struggling after their children have moved out. Years are spent building into our children, while our marriages have been set to coast and then when the children are gone building their own lives we don't know how to relate to our spouse. Then we feel like our marriage is breaking down - when in reality it has been breaking down for years because you haven't been building into it.
My family is built on my relationship with my husband. We choose to be married to each other and build a life together and watch it grow and flourish, then we added our daughters to that relationship so that it can become fuller. How could I choose to neglect that which my life is built upon?
I have named my golf set "Peg" and my husband and I have found a great little par 3 course where we can go for a nice walk and hit a few golf balls - hopefully in the direction of the hole 😁 and we have a chance to spend 90 minutes talking and challenging ourselves each game. I always keep score, not to compete with each other but to see how we are doing from game to game, and I set the rule that we can never score higher than a 6 on a hole, I just give us a 6+. 😉
Priorities are important and we need to make sure that they are what fill up our lives. So many little things and things that are not necessary can start to invade but we have a choice. My family is important, they will be the ones that I am thinking about on my death bed. They are the ones that I think about when I fall asleep at night and when I wake up in the morning. They are priority.
I also know that to be what I need to be for them, means that I have to make myself a priority as well. I will share more about that in my next post, in this year of journaling I am going to be dealing with a lot of heart healing, purpose searching and goal making. You can find out more about that in my next post.
I love teaching journaling workshops. I basically tell everyone to throw out any idea that they have about journaling and start fresh.
There are so many different opportunities in journaling, one of them is to practice gratitude. Studies show that by doing this simple exercise daily you will have more alertness, enthusiasm, optimism, attentiveness, energy, more motivated, likeable, generous, helpful, more likely to volunteer and give back.
I think that those are all qualities that we would appreciate being described as - so my challenge for you is for the 31 days in August to share three things that you are grateful for. I even created a printable that you can print off for yourself to be accountable for the next month. Think about how beneficial this will be for you, your marriage and your family. Print off a few copies and share them with your children, your friends, even your husband and grow together on this journey of creating a grateful heart and life.
Life is full of chaos and noise. It has gotten to the point where we are afraid of quiet.
Whenever there is quiet our thoughts take over and those thoughts can scared us sometimes. So we keep adding to our lives.
Tonight our daughters were working on homework assignment, my husband was at band practice so I finished up the dishes and thought I would go and sit down and rest for a few minutes. While I was sitting down to relax I turned on the TV to watch the news, then I thought that I hadn't read the paper today. When I finished the paper I picked up my cell phone and started to play a game on it. When all of a sudden I realized what I was doing. I had planned to sit down and relax for a few minutes and now I was bombarding my brain into overload.
Why do we willingly do this to ourselves?
It is time my friends, to embrace quietness and stillness and learn to just 'Be'.
It takes time and practice, it will not be easy for me - I can tell you that! But it is something that I know I need to do. The first step I believe is to find a place where you can find quiet. Also, if you have children that would include a time as well. I have friends who get up at obscene hours in the morning just to guarantee their quiet time. I am not a morning person. I get up because of necessity to take care of my family and get ready for work. I like dusk, the girls have quieted down for the night and I have time to think about my activities of the day - the conversations that took place - and what did I learn today?
Use those precious moments during your day to pause and "Be". I am told that your quality of life will increase dramatically. Life throws so much at you each day - I want to be able to treasure those moments of silence and solitude, and use them to become a better wife, mother and friend.
Anyone want to join me on this journey? I am going to need all the encouragement I can get!
“Paper is to write things down that we need to remember. Our brains are used to think.” Albert Einstein
My husband is always reminding me to write things down. I tend to have millions ideas and thoughts running through my head continuously. Sometimes I can’t sleep because I am so excited about the things that are going through my head.
My husband told me that he heard a story about Albert Einstein and how he would write everything down. Anything that came to mind he would write down. He had many journals of thoughts and ideas that he kept record of. He did even memorize his phone number, if he needed it he knew where he wrote it down and he could look it up.
Why did he do this?
Because when you write down all the things that are running through your mind it opens your mind to new ideas and thoughts!
No wonder Einstein is known as a brilliant man!
So this is my new mission, I want to keep my mind open to new ideas and thoughts. I want to have the space to be creative and to give time and energy to the things in life that matter, not what I perceive as demanding my time.
Depending by which standards you measure life from - I could say that 2018 was a horrible year.
I had people come into my life that caused me such deep pain that I am still learning how to cope and move forward.
I had situations that stretched me further than I ever thought possible.
I saw things in people that I wish I could unsee.
2018 had so many plots twists the best fiction writer couldn't have wound this plot together.
As 2018 is coming to an end I find that I have two choices. I can drag this "horrible year" into 2019 or I can change my perspective.
I do not look at 2018 as a horrible year. I have learned so much about myself and where my place is in this world. I would have chosen to learn the lessons another way, but unfortunately the easy way is usually not the best way.
I had a situation in 2018 that changed me - it through me for a loop that I wasn't expecting and was not prepared for. I didn't know how to feel, I didn't know how to cope or move forward. It broke me and shook who I thought I was to my core.
So how do I move forward for 2019?
Easy! No actually it's not easy, there are not a magical amount of steps that will make it all shiny and new.
As with anything that has the greatest rewards is the amount of effort you put in to make it a success.
I am choosing that my 2019 will be a success story to the lessons I have learned in 2018. (I am sure that 2019 will have new lessons for me to learn😊 )
I have a saying for my experiences in 2018. Years ago I made the choice to stop looking at situation based on a good or bad scale. Everything is a "character building exercise". Each day there is something to be learned - to be gained. Once you change your perspective, then your life situations start to look differently.
Once the situations start to look different then you start to change your reactions and how you feel about life and your place in it starts to become clearer. And thankfulness and gratitude become a part of these experiences.
A few questions I ask myself on this last day of 2018:
I am looking forward to journeying with you in 2019!