It feels good

It feels good to feel good. Why do we forget this? Or neglect it? Or choose to stay in an unhappy state, avoiding the things we know will help us to feel good?

There are a lot of really complicated answers for those questions. Some have to do with habit, some with depression, some with disease, fear, outside pressure. Who knows.

The truth is, though, that we can feel good if we choose to.

I forget that too often. Right now I remember.

So I am reminding you. Go do something that makes you feel good. Not because I said so, but because you deserve it. And because you really do have the power to choose.

Choose Love

Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. -Yoda

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Choose love. Choose to be the light in the dark. In this time of change, when fear is ruling the world, choose not to give in.

Change begins with you and with me. I choose to take care of me and my own. To spread love in my little corner of the world. To offer respect and support to those around me, no matter their views. I choose to take action in my life to make the world a better place for me and my loved ones, right here. I will do what I can to make the world better.

If you do the same, the ripples of our kindness and our change will spread and intersect. We will change the world, one person at a time.

Choose to keep doing what you need to do. Choose to do it with respect, kindness, and love. Choose to be the change.

Choose love.

Practice Makes Perfect 

Clearly I still need to work on this whole daily post concept. It’s been a busy week, and all too easy to set this aside. So now I will stretch my brain a bit to see what I’ve been thankful for these last few days.

I am thankful for pizza.

I am thankful for flirting.

I am thankful for lazy days.

Not so hard to think of things. Especially when I don’t try to confine myself to “big, important ideas”. I can be just as thankful for pizza as I can for the miracle of a sunset, or the joy that is connection with others.

Maybe this means there are other areas where I don’t have to try so hard.

Waiting

never wait

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Taking Care of Me

Taking care of myself has rarely been enough of a priority for me. I tend to focus on the needs of others, because often they seem to be easier to address. And because I sometimes have difficulty identifying my own needs. I’ve really gotten tired of waiting for other people to do the same for me. Took a very long time to understand that it doesn’t work that way.

In any case, I have often let myself be lower on the list of priorities. Lately, I’m making some changes. Instead of focusing on what I want or need, I’ve been focusing on what makes me feel good. I like feeling that I have accomplished things, so every time I do, I write it down. Sometimes by the end of the day, I have a pretty impressive list. I’m keeping track of little moments that make me feel loved and cared for, whether they come from me or from others. I’m taking better care of my body, because it feels good to do so. I’m cutting myself some slack. Not saying that I can get away with anything, but really truly accepting that any success is still success, that any progress still counts. This all adds up to me ending my day with a really satisfied, fulfilled feeling.

This taking care of me thing is awesome. I’m so glad I found my right way to do it.

New Year, Not So New You

Ah, New Year’s Day. The day when we all get to be shiny and new. Yesterday we promised that next year, we would be better: healthier, happier, kinder, more forgiving, more generous, more thoughtful, more organized. Today is the day most of us try our best to fulfill that promise. Tomorrow is the day most of us give up.

We’ve gotten used to instant gratification. Practically everything we could want is available the moment we want it. But changing yourself takes more than a day. It takes more than a promise, or a hope, or even a commitment. It takes work. That promise, and your commitment to it, will need to be reevaluated and renewed. Every single day. Change is inevitable, but if you want to be in control of where change takes you, you have to choose to be so. How many of us are familiar with deciding to work out more often? And when we make the decision, we are so determined, so full of the rush of knowing this will help us feel better. Then we get caught up in daily routines, stressed about work or family or money, and even though we’ve been working hard, there is a day when we don’t stick to our plan. No big deal, we can pick up tomorrow. But then it happens again. And again. And in a while, we realize it’s been weeks since we have actually worked out. We aren’t sure how it happened, but there it is. And now it’s starting over from the beginning, and that’s just plain exhausting.

This is why I say we have to decide to change, every day. There is just too much going on in our lives, we are all moving too fast for a lesser commitment to be successful. Time moves so fast, and in order to make the most of it, we have to take charge.

2014 was a hard year for me. I went through some really rough times, lost some important people, and perhaps most importantly, lost a part of myself. It’s taken me most of the year to realize I will never get that part back. The me that was can never be again. I have become a new shape, smaller in some places and larger in others, and I have to choose how to fill that shape in. And this is a constantly ongoing process. In the midst of all my struggles, I started a career that so far has been an enormous blessing. I’ve moved forward in so many ways. I already started my New Year’s resolution. Two weeks ago, I decided I was done with feeling weak and out of shape. And every day since, I have done something about it. I am very out of shape, so nothing is too strenuous, but there is yoga, and stretching, and the beginnings of boxing practice again. Every day, I tell myself I will do something. And there have been days it almost doesn’t happen. But because I make that promise to myself, it does. Sometimes it is just a little stretching right before bed, but it is something. And slowly, that will grow into something more. Big dramatic promises don’t work for me. I am changing slowly, a little tiny bit at a time. And I am taking charge of how that change happens.

So, my not-so-new friends, I wish you the best of luck in 2015. Whatever your goals, your dreams and desires, whether or not you turn them into resolutions, I wish you the strength and determination to see them through, and to take charge of your life. Blessed be.

Craft Fair

Today I was a vendor at a craft fair, for the first time ever. It was a small affair, hosted in a home, with seven vendors in all. A little crowded, to be sure, but well set up. Small tables, all with white tablecloths, one with snacks and goodies to share with guests.Plenty of room to walk. It was a lighthearted, relaxed event.

Never would have known that if you’d asked me as recently as last night. I was so freaked out about whether I had forgotten anything, and if I would have enough sizes and styles of jewelry (I have plenty), and how I would arrange them, and were my prices reasonable… I went on for days, actually, stressing about it. It was exhausting, but it paid off. When I showed up this morning to set up, I knew exactly what I had, knew I had checked everything off my list in one way or another, and knew that even if I sold nothing, I get to give myself credit for showing up.

I was not outrageously successful, but I did sell several pieces of jewelry and generate some interest in custom work. Therefore, still successful. It was wonderful to see the creative works that others brought to share, and very gratifying to have my own work admired and purchased. And tomorrow, I will do it again, with even less stress. It sounds like a good plan to me.

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