Note to self.
Here is my B list from last time, and these are my latest additions.
Before - Being spontaneous is wonderful! But jumping into some things without any planning is not always going to end well. Before you set things in stone, stop and see if maybe working it out could be of benefit in the long run. Sometimes you can get so excited about doing something, you just go for it with no thought of the big picture (surely I’m not the only one who does this on a regular basis?). Take a step back, a deep breath and look forward. It’s usually much easier to make a few changes before you start, rather than cleaning up a mess you may have from going hard without thinking of details.
Best - Are you the best at everything you do? If not, why?! Simple reason for that one; you’re human. We’re told to push ourselves to the max, encouraging our kids to drive themselves until they’re perfect, but no one can be the best at everything. And settling for nothing less than amazing is not always in our best interest.
So instead of struggling to always be the best, aim for always being your best.
Bend - Sometimes we get an idea in our heads, and just can’t shake it. I know I can be a bit inflexible when I think I know it all, and it doesn’t always end well. Listening to other opinions with an open mind is usually a good option, and bending your ideas just a little may work out the best for everyone involved.
The idea came to you for a reason, it just may be that it needs to be restructured a little. Listen to what others have to say, give a bit more thought then see what you can come up with. Deciding to juggle things could work out beautifully, and deciding to bend doesn’t mean you need to break.
Barter - Is there something you struggle with, that someone else may be able to help you with? Is there something you may be able to help with, that is giving someone else a challenge? Maybe you could do some bartering, and both end up with what you want or need. You never know how you can help, until you ask and put your offer out there. Same with getting some help yourself, working together can make the world of difference.
Just don’t fall into the trap of trying to always make it an “even” swap. Every action has an effect, but not everything can be given a monetary value, and if you come out of it feeling undervalued, it’s not worth it.
Boost - You know how good you feel when someone acknowledges you or something you’ve done? It’s a little bit lovely knowing that you’re appreciated, and it can make a big difference to your thinking for the day. See if there’s someone around you who could do with a little boost, and pass it on.
Just a little way to share some good karma, that could make a positive change for all involved.
Breathtaking - Every day has the potential to show us how amazing it can be, and it’s up to us to choose to see it or not. Wake up in the morning and dread what the day has to give you, and you’ll see nothing but blah. But jump out of bed, have a bit of a stretch and look outside to see what’s doing with the weather, and you could just be setting yourself up for a fabulous day.
I try to check outside first thing, and see how the sky’s looking, and that usually sets the tone for my mood for the day. I love a breathtaking sunrise, all golden and fresh, but also appreciate an icy grey sky. Rather than write it off as a miserable day, I try to think how cool and fresh everything is going to be. Even a gloomy, rainy day has it’s place; bright green grass, full dams and all those lovely puddles to jump in!
Are you a puddle jumper?
Usually I love driving by myself. I use the time to think, sort stuff out and have the best sing. And by best, I don’t mean well done, my singing is definitely only to be enjoyed by me! The drive home from school drop-off is about 15 minutes, mainly through farmland, with a bit of beach-front thrown in for good measure. So, generally a lovely start to my day.
But recently I had a frustrating trip, and it had nothing to do with traffic, road rage or any of the usual bad driving experiences. It did have everything to do with FOMO.
I’m the first to admit I get totally confused when Bell starts reeling off FOMO, YOLO and all the other shortcuts in current speak. But I’m sadly well aware of the meaning of this one, because I suffer from it more often than I would like,
FOMO is the acronym for Fear Of Missing Out, and every now and then it strikes me. I’m usually quite content with my lot, but sometimes I can get a bit panicky when I think I may not be making the most of a situation. On this recent trip, the cause of my FOMO wasn’t anything more complicated than the radio.
A song I hadn’t heard in ages came on, and I started to get lost in it. But, I started to think that there may be a better song on another station, and I was torn between listening to the oldie and doing a flick around. Big decision with serious ramifications? No. Annoyingly tempting? Yes! And so for the next 3 or so minutes, I listened to that song, all the while wondering what tunes I was missing out on.
Now this obviously isn’t a life-changing decision, and if you’ve read this far and think I need to get some real problems to occupy my mind, stay with me for just a second longer. My point is to bring attention to the fact that it’s easy to fall into the trap of always thinking there’s something better, that we’re missing out on, instead of enjoying what we’re doing right now.
What if someone else is having a better time than me? What if there’s a fabulous event happening that I could be a part of? What if the most perfect partner in the world is waiting just around the corner, and I’m not available? Let your mind run off in endless thoughts like this, and you’re going to end up miserable, no matter how happy you are.
We’re constantly bombarded with images on social media of how perfect other peoples’ lives are. How could we not be envious and think we should be striving for the same? But so much of what we see is edited, cropped and filtered to only show the good parts. A lot of the time the normality of life is on the edges of those beautiful images, but we just don’t see it.
It may seem sometimes, that you’re the only person not living in some kind of glorious Wonderland. Beautifully styled clothes, gourmet dishes, manicured gardens and spotless kitchens pop up on our screens regularly. But as faultless as these lives may seem, there are real stories behind them, making up the majority of their background. No one, no matter how rich or pretty or talented they are, has the perfect life all the time.
Personally, I love Instagram and Pinterest, and could spend hours scrolling through my feeds. But I also try to keep in mind that we’re only seeing the gorgeous edit, and reality is rarely that lovely on a constant basis. I’m all for getting lost in all the pretty for a while, but won’t allow myself to get down because my life isn’t “as good”.
If you find yourself wondering why your life isn’t as amazing as everyone else around you, try making a list of all the great things you have. Don’t limit it to physical stuff; friendships, love, family and pride in things you achieve are wonderful and should be celebrated just as much as sparkly goodies. And don’t forget the power of a spectacular sunset to make you appreciate what’s good in the world!
Do you ever suffer from FOMO?
Just look around.
Green tea is what I have when I’m trying to cut down on coffee, but still feel like I need a hot drink. I love it even more when my sister-in-law uses it in her baking, and her green tea baked cheesecake is something really special. It’s always in plentiful pots when we have a banquet with John’s family, usually refilled two or three times throughout the meal.
One thing that really makes my blood boil, is when I see someone who obviously isn’t disabled, parking in a disabled spot. I know they’ll always have a good reason; I’ll only be quick, there’s no other parks, I’m the most important person in the world. But sorry, that’s one injustice that just doesn’t cut it for me.
I’m no fan of confrontation, but that’s something that will make me speak up, big time.
So yesterday when I had to pick up a parcel at the post office, and saw a car with no sticker pulling into a disabled spot, I was ready for a showdown.
It was a flash little sporty car and the driver just zoomed into the last available park. Automatically my mind screamed “How dare you?!!”
I was juggling a few things as I walked in, so didn’t give the dirty look I had brewing, but would definitely let the driver know that he was in the wrong when I came out.
Imagine how awesome I felt when I walked out of the post office just as the driver was getting out of the car, and he was anything but able bodied.
They were a young couple, and the guy who had been driving was slowly making his way out of the car, while his partner got his crutches out of the back seat. He then attached the crutches to his arms, and started to travel along the footpath. To say he was walking would be an exaggeration. This guy’s left leg wasn’t doing anything to help him get along. But man, his determination was so incredibly impressive. His face showed that nothing was keeping him off those feet.
So where I’d been so outraged just 5 minutes before, now I was thoroughly ashamed of myself. HOW DARE I?!!
I’d jumped to the conclusion that he was in the wrong, but really it was me.
I usually give people the benefit of the doubt and try to see the good in everyone, but this time I’d just assumed. I’m so glad I didn’t pass on my bad feelings when I originally saw the guy drive in. It just goes to show that we don’t always know the full story, even if a situation looks pretty straightforward.
I’m in no way pitying the driver, I don’t even know his circumstances. But knowing that I was thinking less than lovely thoughts about him, doesn’t make me too proud.
It’s easy to think we know what’s going on, at first glance. But I wonder how many times something’s been said or action taken based on info that was completely unfounded. Wondering why this happened, I’m looking at it as a lesson for me to get all my facts straight, before I make any assessments on anyone’s character from now on. I guess sometimes we all need a bit of a shake up, don’t we?
Are you a conclusion jumper?
Starting at A of course, here are my new zen words. You can see the A words on my list when I did this series the first time, and I can’t believe that was 2 whole years ago!
Thank you to everyone who had some fabulous word suggestions last week. I love how something like this really makes you think.
Alone - Do you love spending some time by yourself? I do and because it doesn’t happen regularly, I really make the most of it when it does. Reading is a real getaway for me and always has been, but when I need a quick fix, I turn to magazines. The pile I have at the moment could almost make another side table beside my desk! I know I’ll get through it one day.
Think of something you really love to do, but don’t always make time for, and factor a little bit of time to do it. Make sure it’s just for you, and float away in some lovely alone time. Just having that time to reconnect with yourself is precious, so make the most of it.
Awake – When you have your time pretty well organized, it can seem like you’re going through the motions and not really aware of what’s going on around you. You can start to feel like you’re in a bit of a daze, and need to wake yourself up with a little excitement.
It’s great to be sorted and know what you need to do, but that can also make it a bit too easy to just coast through your days. Probably better for your stress levels, but it can quite possibly become a boring day-in/day-out existence.
Throw yourself a curve ball every now and then, and don’t make firm plans for every single thing. The thrill of a touch of panic may be just what you need to appreciate what can almost feel like monotony. Just don’t toss all your plans out the window, some things have a due date for a reason.
Afraid - I don’t care how brave someone thinks they are, everyone is afraid of something. And conquering that fear can go a long way to making you feel that little bit better about yourself. Being afraid is usually something we associate with negativity, but fear can be a great motivator.
Think of a time when you’ve challenged yourself with something that scares you, and the outcome has been a positive one. That feeling is pretty awesome, and really boosts your confidence. You don’t have to take silly risks to be afraid, we all have different things that may make our adrenalin race. Find yours and go for it, the rush may be just what you need.
Adapting - Change is scary, change is intimidating, but change can be a good thing. When you push beyond your perceived limits and step out of your comfort zone, the rewards are definitely worth it. Adapting to a new or changed situation is something that may not come naturally, but when we do push ourselves, it’s usually awesome.
If you’ve been working, playing or pushing yourself to a certain level, it becomes habit. If you change a factor that makes a big difference, you’re challenging yourself to go beyond that comfort zone, and you need to adapt. Making that change could very well lead you down new paths, and at the least will give you a bit of a shake up. It’s easy to tell yourself you could never adapt to a particular situation, but it’s so much more exciting to see if you can.
Away - A change is as good as a holiday right? And a holiday does wonders for your sense of self and overall wellbeing, so why not get away? Just leave everything and take off.
Why not? Because life isn’t always as easy as that, and dropping out of the responsibility race is not always possible. But getting away from how you would normally do things, may be what you need to feel refreshed and ready to tackle new stuff.
Something as small as taking a new route to work can add a point of difference to your day. Or how about trying a coffee shop that is a few suburbs away from your usual? Even visiting a new library feels fresh, and that’s always a favourite of mine. Just because you don’t have an actual holiday on the horizon, doesn’t mean you can’t get away from your well-worn path.
Awesome - This one’s just for you, because deep down you know you really are!
So, any more A words I haven’t thought of yet? And are you a magazine hoarder like me?
I’ve been watching The Block lately, and it’s got me thinking about changing a few things around the house. But there’s just so much to think about, especially when you see some of the fabulous ideas they come up with! One of the things that makes an impact, without too much work or expense would be lighting, and where better to start looking but Pinterest?
I’ve collected some real beauties on my Enlightened board, but now the biggest dilemma is which ones to choose. Maybe I’ll enjoy them online for a while, just to be sure.