Posted in General

Happy birthday!

To everyone out there who turn another year older today; here’s a few quotes to share in celebrating you!

Love Dr. Seuss! I hope you celebrate YOU today!

And I hope the next 365 for you and me are all about creating the life we love.

Happy day to me and you! Now gotta go get some cake! ūüéā

Posted in General, lists

Belonging

We all desire to belong; to be a part of a group, team. It’s why we seek out a mate, friends, lovers.  Why we try to get along with our co-workers and teammates.  We need other people to help us navigate and tolerate the world we live in. We long to be understood and recognized.

So how do we function when we’ve not found our tribe yet? What ways can we cope while searching? How do we function in tough environments when we might feel isolated or out of our comfort zone?

This has been on my mind the last few days for a few reasons. One as I think about my daughter off in college, trying to find those she connects with. How should she go about it when many seem very different than her?  Two as I think about a friend who suffers from depression so deep that she barely desires to get out of bed; I am not even sure she is.   Three as I think about my current relationship and how great it is to feel that sense of belonging and acceptance and what did I do to get there.

Here are some of my opinions on how to get to the place of feeling that you belong; no matter what situation you might be in.

  • First this starts with a belief in your self.  You must believe that you are worthy of belonging.  Accept who you are.  Your faults and strengths.  That you are human and you will fail at times; you will hurt others at times, you are not perfect!  BUT you ARE Worthy of Belonging.  I believe every thing begins with your sense of worth!  It’s tough to belong to others if you don’t accept yourself.
  • Be honest about what you need from your tribe; your person. Your friends, coworkers, partner, family members cannot, will never be able to, read your thoughts. You must own being truthful about what you want and need from them. And be honest about what you’re willing to give to them. All relationships are a give and take, you must be able to be honest.
  • Communicate these honest truths! If you never share what your needs are, no one will know. You have to share your boundaries as well. Each of us are 100% responsible for our own emotions. Our own actions.
  • Take risks. Venture out of your comfort zone. Try new places for lunch. For happy hour. Join a new meet up or group event. Explore new stores, hiking trails, whatever interests you. Opening yourself to new adventures is a great way to meet new people who may just be part of your tribe.
  • Be willing to be open. Having an open mind and heart creates an open posture that can help others to feel safe to connect with you. The more approachable you are, the more you might find connections.

There is no right or wrong way to go about finding those who could be part of your tribe. Belonging is a personal journey and one you get to drive. The more you work on seeking those you truly can be vulnerable with the better sense of belonging you’ll feel.

Don’t give up, your team, partner, tribe awaits.

Posted in General

Death and sadness

It’s been awhile since I have posted.¬† Even now, as I type this I am not sure I truly have much to say.¬† But I am trying to see writing¬†as a break more than needing a break from it.¬† It has often been a balm to my soul, so I attempt to share some of that now.

In this¬†past week, a great sadness has rocked me.¬† Has shaken me enough to ponder; what is the point?¬† What is the point of this life?¬† The struggle?¬† Not really in the melodramatic way it seems I am viewing it, but more in what are we doing with our lives and is it making an impact in the way it “should”?¬† Is what I am doing here, on this planet, making a difference in some way that is worth my time, energy and soul?

My heart is heavy. My soul is sad. My body is tired. I am too young for the melancholy that I have allowed to seep in these past few days or perhaps longer. I sit and watch others;  strangers or those I love or have loved and see that we are all just one moment from death. We know not the moment unless we take that action ourselves. And if we do, what are we left with? What happens to those we leave behind?

Death takes people, every day, but when it’s done by one’s own hand, I think there is a loss so great to those left behind, that it is beyond our comprehension to understand it.¬† We are left with so many questions, so many wonderings if we somehow could have changed the outcome.¬† There is no closure and as humans, we like things wrapped up.¬† We like to know the whys of things,¬† it’s part of our greatness. It drives us to come up with amazing innovations and solutions to problems.¬† But when we don’t get the why, when we are not able to discern another’s¬†thoughts and reasonings, we are left with an even greater loss as we are not able to attribute death’s taking to a rational cause.

Grief is a tough state to bear.¬† It’s time-consuming, soul-crushing, heavy.¬† At this time, I am still pondering what is the point?¬† The knowledge that death is all around us, every day, it is in my own selfishness that I can see we are often unaffected till it hits close to home, till it’s our loved ones, family or friends that cause us to truly be impacted.¬† Perhaps this is just me, but we often go through life unaffected by those we do not know or care about it.

I am wondering if that is the point of this moment; to be woken up to a greater impact we must make in this life.¬† To see my one life as greater than this tiny bubble I inhabit and reach beyond the grief and loss we all experience, let it fuel a fire to be a difference maker.¬† To take the losses of this life and become greater because of them.¬† As my theme continues, to be our best selves…

These quotes are so very true.... LOSING A FAMILY MEMBER TO SUICIDE: √ʬĬúA person never truly gets √ʬĬėover√ʬĬô a suicide loss. You get through it. Day by day. Sometimes it√ʬĬôs moment by moment.√Ę¬Ä¬Ě √ʬĬĒ Holly Kohler. When someone in your family commits suicide, your entire mindset about life is changed and although your family's world is sadly changed, you learn about the importance of love and you learn to value every day that you have on this Earth.

This hit me as well as important to remember; may we always step up…not necessarily¬†in just the losses.

For those grieving from a suicide loss√ʬô¬• | Quotes | Pinterest

Have to make a plug for this service:
https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
1-800-273-8255 

Posted in lists

Best friends. 6 traits of a great (bestie) kind of friend.

Best Friends are the BEST!  For me, they are part of what makes me survive this life!  I can not imagine doing this life without them!  So I have to give a shout out to these ladies in my life!  I am very fortunate to have a few really great women in my life that lift me up, support me and tell me the truth.  These are all long-term friendships, all over 10 years, some, all of my adult life.  We have been there for each other through all of the ups and downs of this crazy ride of adulthood, motherhood, marriages, jobs, etc.

I was thinking about the traits that make a great friend.  As I am raising children to go out into this world, I want them to seek people who have similar values as in my experience this makes for better relationships.  So I started thinking about the traits of these wonderful women that make up my core group, that have been the anchors when I have been floating around and the life preservers when drowning.

Here is a list I thought of as I was thinking about each one of them.  Traits one must have to be a great (bestie) friend in my opinion:

  • Honesty.¬† I want my best friends to tell me “yeah you look fat in that”.¬† Ha!¬† Maybe not so harshly, but I want them to be honest with how they think, what they feel, to not say what you want to hear but to speak the truth.¬† And be willing to trust that I will accept their view with the intent it was given…in love.
  • Have a sense of humor.¬† Laughter is most definitely the best medicine. We need friends that make us laugh.¬† The kind where you have tears¬†running down your face.¬† Where you have “inside jokes’ that you share and that can always make you both laugh.
  • Trustworthy.¬† As with the honesty, you have to be able to trust them with your secrets.¬† To trust that yes they will tell you the truth, but more than that, you trust them to have your back.¬† You can count on this kind of friend to keep their word.
  • Loyalty.¬† You want friends that will stand beside you.¬† That will fight the battle with you.¬† The best kind of friend will be the one you can call in the middle of the night and be there.¬† One who¬†will jump in the car and come right away if you really need them. You may never need to exercise this, but knowing you have someone that is there no matter what…is a comfort that some never find.
  • Real.¬† You want a friend that you can show all your sides to.¬† The pretty and the ugly stuff.¬† The stuff you are proud of and the things you are not.¬† And you love each other anyway.¬† There is no real judgment, just a desire to want each other to be their best selves.
  • Cheerleader.¬† Besties cheer for each other.¬† They support each other.¬† They shout and dance when you succeed and hold your hand and cry with you when you fail.¬† They are one of your FANS!

I was always taught that if you can count on one hand these type of friends, you are fortunate.¬† Even if you only have one person that fits this, count yourself lucky.¬† We all need a Bestie type of friend.¬† One who is there through thick and thin.¬† One to laugh and cry with.¬† To just sit in the quiet with as well.¬† For me, I have a handful of these type of girlfriends…I call them my Core.

This is that shout out to them, saying thank you for the support and love through all the chaos and all the triumphs.  I Love that I get to do this life with you.

Send love to your close friends that make this life a little easier.¬† Those that help you through the tough moments and rejoices in the amazing, great moments.¬† Remember to thank them occasionally, to make sure they know how much you value them.¬† I see a season of more good than bad…can’t wait to share it with them and ya’ll.

Happy Days ahead!  Thank you Besties!

Posted in General

What if…

How often do you say or think to yourself “what if?”¬† What if I had done this or that?¬† Married someone else? Went to that other school?¬† Took that different job?¬† Or the common one, what if I had not spoken in anger?¬† Chosen other words to say? Behaved differently?¬† We could spend a lot of time in this never-ending loop of the other path our life could have taken, if only.

I have always been a “what¬†if” person.¬† The past few days have taught me, I still am.

This week I went back to work.  Back to an environment that has created a lot of anxiety for me, which surprises me.  It has affected my sleep; (right now I should be sleeping -night shifter here), my ability to focus and these questions of what if seem to be on a continuous loop.  Since my mind will not let me rest today, I thought I might as well get up and write them out.

My workplace is where many of the “what if’s” exist for me.¬† It’s a place I have worked off and on for over twenty years.¬† Where I have met a lot of people who were (and some that still are) significant in my life. Many that are in the past.¬† They are the road not taken. This is also where my ex-fiance works.¬† Being in a place where I do not communicate with these folks anymore, I guess I can’t help but ask myself “what if”.¬† What if I had not canceled the engagement?¬† What if I had never agreed to it in the first place?¬† What if I had never met him, or some of the others that have greatly affected me?¬† If only I had taken an entirely different career path many years ago, what would I be doing now?

I was told not that long ago that I spend too much time in the past.¬† That I do not seem to look at what I can do, instead I focus on what I didn’t do or what I wished I had done.¬† The things I can no longer do anything about.¬† I was kind of offended when I was told this.¬† I never really thought of myself as a backward-facing person.

I have very good friends.¬† Many would probably tell me the same thing, this friend just has no filter and doesn’t care too much about hurting my feelings.¬† This can sting at times, but I appreciate the honesty.¬† ¬†And some of my closest friends don’t understand this piece of my personality as they are nothing like this.

Last night I was thinking about the what if’s of my most recent relationship.¬† The what if’s about someone I loved very deeply but that wasn’t the right fit for me.¬† The what if of who is he. If only’s.¬† I was very distressed with all of this. And yet even in the midst of all these thoughts, I was also thinking about how much I enjoy my present state.¬† I love my life these days.¬† I truly do not want to think about the past anymore.

So today what has woken me up, is that I can not help but think…WHAT IF WE CHANGED the FOCUS of the IF?¬† ¬†What if we changed the narrative we tell ourselves?

If we started to focus on failing forward.  If we took this phrase and applied it to finding new paths.  Instead of it being something that we often see as negative, we turned it into a positive.  Into a phrase, we use to push ourselves out of our comfort zones.  Into trying new things.  To meet new people.  To reach new goals.

When seeing this through a positive, forward-thinking lense, it looks like this, it asks these types of questions:

  • What if I learn this new skill, how will that help my current job role?
  • What if I try out that new workout, how will that impact my exercise goals?
  • What if I apply for that other job that I am interested in?¬† What does it look like if I get an interview and they decide to hire me?
  • What if I have that scary, honest conversation with my spouse that I have been avoiding?
  • What if I take that trip that I have been looking into for years?
  • What if I write my thoughts down and start a blog?
  • What if I move?¬† Try out a new place to live?
  • What if I start a business? Write a book? Launch a website?
  • What if I volunteer? Get a pet? Try out for a play?¬†

WHAT IF _______________________________________________________________________

Fill in the blank after the question with any positive change that you really want to pursue.¬† DO NOT look to the past, at the things you can no longer do…but look to the things you wish you were doing NOW.¬† The things you want to try but are afraid to.

This notion of using the what if’s in a positive way can create a paradigm shift in our lives.¬† To creating new paths that may be more peaceful and more aligned with who we are.¬† It creates this notion, a correct notion, that we can change our current circumstances if we choose.

I have always wanted a career doing something that I feel has a purpose.  Has some meaning beyond making a paycheck.  At this present moment in my life, this is raising my children.  Creating successful adults to send out into this world to pursue their goals and dreams.  This is most likely my greatest purpose.

But in the midst of raising children and needing a steady income, there are many other things I can pursue now that will fulfill me too.¬† My own “what if’s¬† that I can turn into a positive, forward-thinking view.¬† That I can use to create new paths in my life.¬† The question I can ask can be “what if I try this or that…what joy can come with pursuing that?¬† ¬†Trying¬†new things might be scary, but if I magnify the possibilities instead of the risks, so many wonderful things may happen.

Instead of looking back at an ending, I can see the beginning…but I have to turn around…face the right direction.

What are your what if’s that you would pursue?¬† How can you turn these into tangible possibilities?¬† What does your life look like when you fill in the blank?

I think I’ll go try to catch some more sleep now…dream about all the possibilities rather than the past if only’s…