If I’m being completely honest, this winter was a tough one for me. And not just because it was endlessly freezing ( literally 150+ days below zero here ), but mostly because the feeling of being cooped up was overwhelming. Over the past six months or so, I’ve continually blamed the weather, threw up my hands, and stayed put. I got comfortable and simply attributed my lack of motivation to good old mother nature. But you know what? It was my own fault. I was the one who allowed myself to feel cooped up and not live life a little more adventurously. Even in the bitter cold.
After all, one of my favorite days this winter was when Michael and I headed over to Minnehaha Falls, which was frozen and beautiful, for a little hike. The trails down were closed because of pure ice covering the stairs … but we chose to go anyway. I literally slid the whole way down, grasping a small railing. And let’s not even talk about the trek back up. That was intense and scary. But I did it, and Michael and I laughed the entire way, despite our frozen fingers and toes. It was one of the few times this season I didn’t let the cold get me down. Instead, I punched it in the face and enjoyed the day.
When it comes to making New Year’s resolutions, I don’t typically jump on the bandwagon. My mind is often thinking about what’s next and setting goals, so the beginning of the year really doesn’t feel too different. While I’m not going to list a bunch of things that I’d like to work on, there is a phrase I want to share that has been playing over and over in my head as of late : This is where you are.
And you know where I first heard that phrase?? During the Insanity workout with good old Sean T. There is a session called “pure cardio” where you perform move after move, for a REALLY long time. Without breaks. And that’s exactly where this little phrase pops up. I remember the first time hearing it, sweating + suffering and tired as can be. But those words kept me going. And although I first heard them while working out, that’s not what I’m here to talk about. Nope. This is about being present in the here and now.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been driven by the future. I know that won’t entirely change as it’s an engrained trait, but I’m very motivated to focus on what’s going on NOW, more. It can be as simple as savoring dinner on date nights instead of worrying about what we’re going to do afterwards. Or enjoying the fact that we now have our own house rather than thinking about what piece of furniture we “need” to buy next. Because here’s the thing : the future is not guaranteed. We all know that deep down, but can easily get caught up in the “what’s next” category. So two thousand fourteen … THAT is what I am focusing on this year. I’m here, it’s January 8th, cheers!
My life lessons post for today is a little more work heavy than I usually like to be, but there’s a reason for that! Over the past year or so, I’ve made a lot of changes to my daily routine that have bettered my work + life balance. I still have a long way to go when it comes to dealing with stress, but these five things have certainly helped leaps and bounds. So with that said, here they are :
GET SLEEP For awhile, I thought it was wrong of me to sleep in until 7:30. I knew that most working adults had to get up earlier than that in order to get ready + be on time to work. So in order to feel like I was “doing things right” ( whatever that means ), I would set my alarm clock, like most do, and wake up a zombie. That all fell apart one day when I said “screw it” and just woke up naturally. I’ve been doing it ever since and have found that my productivity ( and mood ) are much better when I get a good night’s sleep. May as well take advantage of it while I’m still young and can, right??