With my birthday today I thought I would share a list of the 10 things this year taught me.
1.) If you treat your body well, it returns the favor.
I was very, very pregnant at this time last year but I was still exercising and eating well. I’m positive that taking care of my body throughout my pregnancy was the key to bouncing back quickly. I’m also certain that all the walking, running and yoga I’ve done this year has made me a happier person and more fun to be around. Yes it takes effort and time to be healthy but it’s so worth it.
2.) It’s okay to take a step back.
This was a big lesson for me this year. I do not thrive on idleness. But, as I mentioned in my last post, last year was a year for patience. As organized as I tried to be, I just couldn’t get meals made on a regular basis. I couldn’t blog with any consistency. Instead of pushing myself to do something that didn’t feel right, I took a step back and in the end it turned out okay.
3.) Trust your gut.
I wrote a bit about my career transition in this post but this has been a source of constant stress for me the past few months. My job just didn’t feel right anymore and as much as my brain tried to convince me otherwise, my gut didn’t lie. I knew it was time to move on and although there’s been a lot of guilt associated with quitting, I know it was the right move. In the past few months I’ve been working with a career coach and she’s helped put a lot of things in perspective, a big part of that has been listening more closely to what feels natural and authentic instead of forced.
4.) If something keeps reappearing in your life, it’s time to take a closer look.
I’ve always wanted to develop a meditation practice. I knew it would be a good habit for me to form but I kept putting it off. Lately though, it’s felt as if the universe wanted me to take it seriously. Everywhere I turned there was another sign that it was time to get started, from blog posts to my sister’s boyfriend asking for meditation recommendation to finding old meditation books on my book shelf, I couldn’t ignore it anymore. I’ve only been practicing for the past week but it feels really good to finally start something I knew I wanted.
5.) Your life is not on your phone.
Hi, my name is Lisa and I’m addicted to my phone. I am the first to admit that I have a technology addiction. In the realm of number 4, signs kept appearing that it was time to do something about it. My phone was making me feel pretty awful. I am always multi-tasking in the worst possible way, watching TV while surfing my phone, playing with Noe while checking Facebook. It’s pretty terrible. One of my New Year’s resolutions is to limit screen time. That started with taking the Facebook app off my phone. It seems like a small thing but not having it there to mindlessly click on has been so refreshing. I still check it on my computer during nap times but that’s 2 times a day instead of 20. I seriously feel like I’ve been set free. It’s so ridiculous to say, but also true.
6.) Stick to the positive.
Right around the new year someone posted a photo on Instagram with a caption that said, “I have a feeling 2016 is going to be a great year for me”. I don’t know why but I was suddenly jealous, like they had something I couldn’t have. Then I realized, it’s a state of mind. I’m in control of my outlook. That post was just positive thinking and it’s achievable by anyone, including me.
7.) Motherhood is equal parts hard work and sheer joy.
I hadn’t spent much time around babies before Noe came along and I really didn’t know what to expect of motherhood. Sometimes it’s as if my heart is going to explode with the love I feel for my child and sometimes I think I’m going to lose it if I have to look at another Sandra Boynton book. It’s a balance, the unexpected, the wonderful, the patience and the frustrations that make motherhood so wonderful.
8.) Give yourself a break.
Nothing happens overnight and the path you’re on may take time. It’s okay not to have everything figured out. It’s okay if you’re not put together at all times, if your kid is a little messy or won’t take naps. It’s okay if you’re not in your dream job, if your house needs a cleaning, if the dog needs and bath and you can’t do the yoga pose you’re dying to nail. It’s a process, not a perfect, give yourself a break. I’ve been thinking about this a lot when it comes to my own practice and I started asking myself this question, “in 20 years if I still can’t do a handstand, the splits, this arm balance, etc. will it ruin my life?” I’m sure you know the answer to that question too.
9.) Little steps can be big steps.
This year was all about the small victories. I realized that little things made a world of difference for me in the day to day. Again, these are really little things: taking a shower, putting on a little makeup and doing my hair makes me feel like a million bucks, getting outside for a short walk can clear my mind, reading a few pages in a book is better than not starting one at all, making a batch of quinoa on Sunday so there something on hand for quick meals helps out during the week, even if it isn’t a full meal. Little steps can lead to more.
10.) Give thanks!
It’s another year, another 365 days I was given on this planet. It’s not guaranteed. This year I became a homeowner, a mother. I had a body that allowed me to run 100s of miles, do a couple 1000 chatarangas, feed my baby. I was able to travel, sing, dance, work, write, cook and play. I was given another year to love my people with the fierceness and depth that they deserve. This year, I received the gift of time and for that I am utterly thankful.
Enjoy and Exhale!