It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of apparel wear. T-shirts and sweatshirts are my everyday uniform. Apparel with a purpose however makes my heart do cartwheels. I love apparel with a message. Friends – let me introduce you to Work Social Co. Created by Marc Bennett this apparel company not only has a stylish line of trucker hats (I love the grey and royal blue) and t’s – their message of “Work Hard. Live Simple. Be Happy” is one of sheer positivity and gratitude. Take a minute and watch the video on the home page. You’ll be touched right away by the message of living every day with a grateful heart. Marc to me is a perfect example of someone living a Soul-Positive life. You cannot be anything but uplifted listening to Marc speak about the appreciation he has for his life. You can learn more about Marc and Work Social Co. here. Follow Marc’s journey via Instagram and Facebook.
We all have the power to change the world friends. It begins with our very own heart. Living a life of gratitude allows you to focus on the positive of every day. Negativity has no place to live when your heart is filled with gratitude.
As I sit here the house is quiet except for the sound of the refrigerator motor humming. I love mornings like this. The quiet calm before the house awakens with immediate energy.
I am happy to finally have a chance to quietly reflect on my personal accomplishments from 2015:
The birth of Soul-Positive
Creating the #taggedbykindness Project
The discovery of a new creative outlet through mixed media art
Experiencing new artistic techniques
Welcoming vulnerability through open sharing of my creative endeavors
Embracing new adventures
Choosing positive self acceptance on a more regular basis
Letting go of perfection and embracing imperfection
Along with accomplishments comes the acknowledgment of tasks left undone. In order to continue moving forward and keeping the momentum of personal growth – I looked at these tasks and reflected also on why they are still on my to do list:
Regular blog posts (missed this mark big time)
Setting up an Etsy shop
More physical activity
Completing prompts and online classes in a timely manner if at all
Reading more books
Controlling every situation (will always be a work in progress)
I know now after careful reflection that I need to work on my time management skills. I need to refine my skills in the area of clarifying goals. I need to confront fear head on and ask myself “what are you so afraid of?” And most importantly I need to give myself permission to fail and then dust myself off and rise again.
I’m looking forward to 2016. The start of a new year gives me the kick in the pants I need to set new goals and put a plan of action into place.
As many of you know I have been a part of the One Little Word (OLW) Community for a few years now. OLW is a year long monthly prompt driven workshop created by Ali Edwards. You can learn more about this project here.
In 2015 my word was “Momentum”. This was a wonderful choice and it really gave me a positive outlook into what I wanted to accomplish this past year.
For 2016 I have chosen the word “Step”. I am looking forward to the many aspects of what “step” has in store for me. My goal is to step up when faced with hard truths and tough decisions. Step up to more self acceptance and self care. Step back from relationships that do not enhance my own personal growth. Step back and listen instead of always needing to be heard. Step out physically for walks, hikes, kayaking and bicycling to clear my mind, bring me inner peace and bring me back to center.
I hope you take a moment before the stroke of midnight and pat yourself on the back for showing up in 2015, fighting the hard fights and embracing all the good and even some of the ugly. Thank you for being a part of my journey this year. Wishing you all the very best that 2016 has to offer and more!
I work part time as a server for a serving and bartending company. I enjoy my job because it gets me out and amongst different people, the money is decent and most often we’re allowed to eat (major perk).
Let me first start by saying that 9 out of 10 people are fantastic. I never feel disrespected. I am always welcomed and the majority of clients and their guests treat me very well. That being said I recently ran into the one out of 10 who had the ability to make me feel so very small.
I stepped out on to the patio with a tray of appetizers I was serving after being in the kitchen for a few hours assisting our Lead Server. I thought I’d give the girls who had been serving nonstop for a few hours a little breather. The first table I walked up to was mostly older gentlemen in their late 60’s and early 70’s. There was one woman in her 70’s seated in the corner. I asked if they would like to try an appetizer and one of the men rather boisterously piped up “where have they been hiding you?” I laughed it off.
The situation went down hill from there. There were a variety of off handed remarks that were nothing short of vulgar. I slid away with a little less bounce in my step and continued on my way. I felt very small. I shrunk into myself a little. What had I done to open up such a one sided dialogue of vulgarities? These are comments that I can imagine people might say to their buddies when no one else is around. But really to say them to my face and in front of what I later found out was this man’s wife was appalling.
I am writing this not for you to say “poor you” but because as the night wore on I started thinking of all the things I should have said. The silent permission I gave for not speaking up.
I am someone’s wife, someone’s mom. I am a daughter. I am a sister. Never once did that cross this person’s mind. How would I respond if someone spoke to my own daughter this way? Was it a lack of confidence? Was I afraid to make waves? Did I worry about my job? As hard as this is to admit a part of me didn’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable if I spoke up.
Weeks have passed and I have probably thought of this night a thousand times – all those coulda, shoulda, wouldas floating in my brain and out. I’ve been angry at myself for allowing myself to feel small. To silence a voice that was hurting and embarrassed and humiliated by another human being was wrong. I let myself down. I broke my own heart a little.
I try and find something positive in every situation. This situation is no exception. I recently whispered a promise to my soul – I will never again allow someone to make me feel so small. If standing up for myself makes someone else uncomfortable I will not apologize. I’ve learned that being brave doesn’t always come naturally or at the most convenient times. Sometimes being brave comes much later, when you had some time to process your own shortcomings. I am not always perfect in my quest to live a full, self accepting life. On occasion I have to step backward to leap forward. The key is to keep leaping forward. And that my friends is all we can keep doing….
I didn’t intentionally take a break for over three weeks. I thought I had this blogging thing down. I was scheduled and churning out posts like a boss when BOOM – life happened. The end of the school year always sends me into a bit of a tail spin. Teachers’ gifts, last minute school projects, cramming everything I possibly can into these last few days and weeks before school ends…the pace picks up and I slowly lose track of the days. It begins as a trickle and ends in a flood – complete with an emotional tidal wave. This tends to lead to a period of feeling completely overwhelmed. Hence the radio silence friends. I feel like I’m one of those cartoon characters where my feet are kicking up dust and running 100 miles per hour but I am covering exactly zero percent ground.
Am I alone in this emotional frenzy? I lean towards no. I cannot be the only mama who wrings her hands over what needs to be done on the never ending to do list. I move forward but not with any structure. I am not comfortable with frenzy. I like to always have a plan and negotiate changes logically. But as the school year comes to an end I feel like I drop my ball of yarn and am just trying to pull it back to me but the ball gets further and further away. My feelings of guilt for all the things that I haven’t been able to finish start to multiply.
Here’s the thing and after having many an end of school years I’ve learned to tread water for a while and pull myself back to center. The summer schedule gets a little easier and I settle into my routine, and the routine of our home. I take a few more deep breaths. I pause when it’s needed. I remain my own friend. I continue a gentleness with myself.
So maybe my posts won’t be as frequent this summer. Or maybe I will adopt a whole new schedule that allows time for writing more often. I’m ready to adjust my sails for whatever the next few months blows my way.
I hope you’re finding some peace in these summer months and finding some time to take care of you.