Gratitude & Grace

Happy Wednesday! 

I had an amazing day yesterday: I meal prepped the night before so the dogs and I had something to eat. I made the kids biscuits in the morning, minimal fussing by Malachi, my 3 year old not to go to school and everyone made it to school or work on time. I was busy on the farm in the morning, completed a favor for a friend and deliveries for Tropsical in the afternoon. Sounds like a typical day really but after weeks of feeling like I have been in a fog and not as organized as I usually am, yesterday was a big win and I will celebrate that. Especially since I know so many people who are still struggling through their days dealing with all kinds of pains. Life is short and I am learning to embrace the normal days. The days when I feel like I have it together because the days when I don’t feel that way hit hard. 

“Let it go” from Frozen should be everyone’s soundtrack. We all learn on different levels and at different times that we need to let things go. And it’s easy to say it but sometimes it is hard to put it into practice. I have been mad at a friend of mine. I forgave them for hurting me but I realized I was mad. I was mad that they changed and I felt bamboozled. This week I realized I have to let that anger go. That friendship situation was a disappointment however my anger won’t change what happened. God has granted us so much grace and it is that same grace we must offer others. Hurt people hurt people and that’s why it is so important to heal ourselves. 

It is also important to regularly evaluate ourselves and our growth. Are we achieving our goals? What are the roadblocks we are running into that we can change? Are we surrounding ourselves with the right people? The company we keep does play a role in our way of thinking. At first, there isn’t much difference but as time goes on, the influence increases. Make sure you are surrounded by people who are going to help you grow and not remain in the same spot forever. Everyone should be motivating each other and helping them reach their goals, not just partying. 

It is easy to get distracted, especially with so much happening in the world. Having the right mentality and lowering or eliminating distractions is important. Do you really not have time to accomplish that goal or could you reduce the amount of time you spend scrolling on social media? Down time is important but be sure you’re not using that as an excuse to slack off. You would be surprised how much work you can get done in twenty minutes. Keep enriching your mind by reading books, listening to podcasts or watching YouTube videos. Find what works for you and incorporate it into your day. Be mindful of the information you are consuming. 

We all know that life isn’t always easy. The beauty is in the journey. Learning what works for you and building on that foundation to reach your goals. Celebrate the good days and love yourself through the bad days. You have made it this far and there is still so much more for you to accomplish. You are worthy, you are amazing and you are capable. And remind yourself daily  when you wake up, no matter what may happen, you got this! 

Baggage, Spring Cleaning & Balance

After posting about showing up when you do not feel like it, I did not post last week. Life is about
balance. Some days you have to dig deep and show up when you would rather not and some days you need to listen to your body/ soul and do what it needs. Last week I needed a break. It has been an emotional rollercoaster the past month and I feel like I handled it relatively well. But leading up to last Tuesday, a few things happened simultaneously. My phone stopped working. I had a migraine Monday night that had me bedridden. And overall, I just felt spread thin with everything I needed to do. I was going to push to post but then decided not to. And I am glad that I did take a break because by Friday had a 24 hour bug and was miserable. Thankfully there were some aha moments in between.

Bag lady by Erykah Badu was playing and it made me think of the emotional baggage we carry. Our past experiences have taught us certain things and we carry them with us. If we are lucky enough to process some of those experiences, we are able to let them go. But what happens when we are lugging around bags of things that do not serve us? It slows us down, it gets crowded, and we may lose out on other valuable lessons because we have no space. Ideally we want to travel light. Unpacking emotional baggage can be even more chaotic than spring cleaning. You know those times when you are rearranging and you look around and wonder what you got yourself into. Cleaning up is necessary because you realize all of the things you no longer use and can either donate or trash it. Some of our behaviors we hold on to because they protected us in the past but if we take a good look at our lives now, those behaviors are not necessary. Getting rid of the excess baggage lightens our weight and makes space for something new.

A lot of us are praying for things we have not made room for.

Clutter can also negatively impact our moods. Imagine coming home after a busy day and walking into a dirty home. It feels like a weight is dropped on your shoulders. From another standpoint, when we are feeling down, we tend to let the clutter build up a bit. Instead of putting the clothes away the same day, we may leave them an extra day. When you are already feeling bad, it can be tough to do the thing you should. Cameron mentioned once in a short clip for The Alternative that sometimes when we sin, we turn from God instead of going to Him. I think we make a mistake and then we feel bad about it and beat ourselves up. And instead of going to God because we are ashamed for whatever reason, we just let it sit there and then we feel down, we make another bad decision and the “clutter” piles up. If we were to start cleaning up, we would realize that firstly, it is not as big of a mess as we thought and secondly, removing what does not need to be there actually lightens the load on our shoulders. God is patient and understanding, there is no deadline to clean up the mess but the faster you do it, the more time you will spend feeling free.

The thing with baggage and clutter is that sometimes it is easier to notice other people’s stuff but not our own. We all have baggage and we all have some dirt. Sometimes focusing on someone else’s dirt allows us to forget about our mess for a while. The thing is we need to remove the log out of our own eyes before we can talk about the speck in others. (Matthew 7: 3-5) This is also why we should be more considerate. We know how quickly things can progress and we know how it feels not to want to do what is right so when we see someone else struggling, we should encourage them to keep going rather than judge them for struggling. We could always find ourselves in their shoes. So let us be kind to one another and offer a hand where we can, knowing that everything we send out, returns to us.

This week remember to take stock of your baggage and begin spring cleaning. If you have cleaned up then be sure to help someone else who may need it. Have an amazing week and as always, you got this!