Monday, February 19, 2024
Thursday, January 18, 2024
Monday, January 8, 2024
I have a love hate relationship with new years resolutions and also the first half of January. Dark, gray, party-less, blech. I used to find putting away the Christmas decorations and the weird emptiness left where the Christmas tree used to be kind of a bummer. But for some reason I am digging it this year. I love the lack of clutter and sudden spaciousness around the house.
After a fun couple of weeks with loved ones, it's definitely very quiet. But I am appreciating the mental white space to make plans, and to really think. Between now and December 31st, 2024, what will that look like?
The list is long, and probably unattainable, but a wise woman I know said that purpose and follow through were more important than perfection. It's such a simple idea, but it has really stuck amongst the many open tabs in my brain. It's permission to start and to finish, without worrying if the result will be perfect.
Thursday, November 9, 2023
We just got back from visiting Yosemite National Park. It’s stunning, and actually very accessible if you’re traveling with babies or parents that aren’t up for hiking El Capitan.
Talk of Yosemite on our family zoom brought up a memory from my mom and aunt about taking my dad’s and aunt’s parents to Yosemite when my mom and dad were first married. Travel and the outdoors was more of my mom’s family interests, but my dad’s parents? Not so much. Apparently the overnight in the tent cabins was a bit of a disaster and tears were involved. It was a treasure for me to hear the story from the before-me times.
There are lessons to be learned, even now:
- If you can laugh at what seemed like a disaster, then maybe it wasn’t so bad after all. And maybe applying that lens to my own minor disasters (like those sneaky negative memories that wake you up at night randomly?) would be a good way to reframe things.
- One disaster does not a relationship make. My mom had a great relationship with my dad’s parents, and my brother and I very much benefited. I’m so glad their Yosemite trip wasn’t allowed to do permanent damage.
- Everyone doesn’t have to like everything their family and friends are in to. My grandparents, parents, in-laws, aunts and uncles and my own kids love, enjoy and excel at very different things. And I am richer for it.
Monday, October 16, 2023
Perfectionism gets a bad wrap, right up there with micro managing, but The Perfectionist's Guide to Losing Control: A Path to Peace and Power by Katherine Morgan Schafler dismantles the negatives as a way to help relieve stress and use the power of perfectionism for good in your life.
Schafler defines 5 types of perfectionism and one is me to a T: "Messy perfectionists are in love with starting...nothing brings a messy perfectionist more joy than beginnings. Messy perfectionists are optimistic and start happy but they struggle to maintain momentum unless the remainder of the process feels as exciting and as energizing as it did in the beginning...their's are the Instagram profiles featuring half a dozen vague and grossly unrelated job descriptions in the bio." Ouch. Note, I used to use emojis in my Instagram profile so I could fit in more words - ha!
There is hope for me though. "Messy perfectionists take over the world when they learn how to channel their enthusiasm into single, intentional missions they can execute in dynamic ways."
I am a 50-something empty nester, and have way too many ideas with what to do in this third act of my life. Here's to paring it down to something reasonable and achievable!
Sunday, September 17, 2023
Thursday, August 31, 2023
When I have a morning to myself, I'll flip on the Today show while I eat breakfast and read the paper. Very old school. But occasionally in the background noise a gem pops out, like the interview August 29th with author Michelle Icard about her new book, 8 Setbacks That Can Make a Child a Success.
I haven't read the book, and my kids are pretty much adults now, but her steps for getting through and growing from failure would apply to just about any phase of life: Contain, Resolve and Evolve.
- Contain: Do whatever it takes to limit further damage
- Resolve: Take action to fix the wound, not just stop it from bleeding
- Evolve: Deliberately start to put failure in the rearview mirror
Another way to say evolve? Don't press the bruise.
Oh man, if only I had heard this years ago. My poor children. In my worry and in an effort to know that we had weathered some storm, I am sure I asked 1,000,000 times how things were going with whatever the issue was. I wish I had done more to keep that to myself. Luckily they are pretty awesome and turned out ok anyway - ha!