Learning Lately: Fall 2017

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I'm joining Anne Bogel and Emily P. Freeman in noting the things I've been learning every season, and today I'm sharing my fall 2017 collection with you!

 

Sometimes you have to move even when you're not ready.

I like to have all my ducks in a row before I make a move. I like safety nets, sure things, step-by-step plans, blueprints, and if all else fails, a solid Plan B.

But life doesn't always work that way. Sometimes having one foot in the past while trying to take a step forward just leads to a really painful splits that isn't sustainable. Sometimes you have to cut ties, burn bridges, or take the leap without knowing exactly where you'll land.

I'm not advocating irresponsibility or complete recklessness, but rather prayerfully trusting God to provide and guide us forward as we seek Him and His plan for our lives on a season-by-season basis.

 

Simpler is often better.

I'm working to find the "perfect" balance (which doesn't really exist, anyway) between busyness and slowing down as I head into the Christmas season. I have so many things I typically try to cram into the month of December in the name of tradition, celebration, and obligation.

But I'm getting stressed just thinking about that. I don't want to arrive on the other side of New Year's as a drained, exhausted shell of my former self. I don't want my holiday celebrations to feel like obligations. I don't care to do, do, do anymore.

I want to be intentional about how I spend my time all year round, but it becomes the most clear this time of year, when there are so many things vying for my time. I'm beginning to realize that less is more and simpler is better.

This year, I have no grand dreams to make a lengthy Christmas bucket list of activities. I refuse to pile a mountain of "shoulds" upon myself, including expectations to attend all the parties, watch all the movies, make all the goodies, or any other typical holiday festivities. 

Instead, I'm choosing to show up to the things that are the most important. I'm going to cherish the time with my people-- Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with my extended family, a bridal shower for a friend, and some sporadic Christmas movie-watching of only the very best.

 

Teamwork makes the dream work.

Okay, I know it's cheesy, but I like cheesy. I'm hosting a friend's bridal shower this weekend, and I could run the whole show by myself, but it's been such a relief to have a handful of generous, kind friends step up to provide some of the food for the shindig. It takes a significant amount of pressure off my shoulders that I wasn't even aware I was carrying!

As an independent, introverted person, I'm characteristically bad at asking for help, but I'm working on it because I know just how necessary and beneficial it can be.

 

Focusing on gratitude makes you more grateful.

For the month of November, I did an Attitude of Gratitude Challenge, where I shared Facebook Live videos every day, talking about what I'm grateful for. I also posted pictures to Instagram to share more of what I'm giving thanks for. The daily practice of focusing on gratitude (and having to come up with new things to give thanks for) forced me to look more closely at my life through a lens of thankfulness. It made me far more thankful for everyday things and experiences, and it took my focus off the little things that would ordinarily have driven me crazy. I'm so thankful for it! ;)

 

Change is hard, but good.

Even when I'm instigating it, change can be really difficult. But I know it's good for me. I'm working on developing some better habits (like reading more and binge-watching Netflix less, letting my body digest my food before I decide whether I want more, and cultivating a more positive, confident attitude), and doing so is no joke. It takes a lot of motivation and persistence to really change habits that have been around for a while. And I'm learning what it takes to conquer them. 

If you're struggling to change habits or if you're setting goals/resolutions for next year (it'll be here before we know it!), I invite you to join me for Goal Crushing Coaching starting in January to help you set and stick to your goals once and for all!

 

 

What have you been learning lately? I'd love to hear from you in the comments!