An Attitude of Gratitude

One thing I believe in wholeheartedly is living your life with an attitude of gratitude.  Our society, thanks largely in part to social media, has created a culture of dissatisfaction sprinkled with some envy that leaves people wanting more and making choices that are not always wise and best for their current situation. We fail to look at everything we have around us, all of our blessings, small and large; focusing only on what we don’t have that others do.

It can be hard to change a mindset that you have been been living in for such a long time. I totally get that. It takes time and intention to reverse your thoughts to truly love your life and find gratitude in everything.  One way I have found incredibly impactful is keeping a gratitude journal.  A gratitude journal can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be.  Here are a few options:

  1. Grab a cute blank journal at Target and write 3-5 things you’re grateful for at the beginning or end of each day.
  2. If you are already journaling add your 3-5 items to your current daily journal entry.
  3. Get an adorbs gratitude journal like the one pictured.  You can find them at any bookstore, Amazon, etc.  (This is my preference and I purchased the pictured one through Amazon.)

Your gratitude items do not need to be huge.  Certainly they can be, but not necessary.  One day could read as easy as “I’m grateful for a cup of fresh hot coffee, the birds I hear through my window when I wake up, and Grey’s Anatomy.”

You won’t see an instant change, like everything it will take some time and intentionality.  With consistency you will notice a change in your heart and attitude towards life.   So stop looking at everyone’s highlight reel on social media and start paying more attention to what you have around you.  I know you can and I know you will be so much happier for it.

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Are you prioritizing YOU?

Women are busy.  Throw a kid or two in the mix and you have the perfect recipe for a personal tornado.  But are we doing ourselves any justice?  Are we mindful that we come first?

When I became a twin mom to two premature babies my self-prioritization went out the window.  I firmly believed that those two nuggets were the only thing I needed to focus on.  And honestly, between doctor’s appointments, pumping, moving, work, and on and on I didn’t really have much free time.  Or so I thought.

None of us truly have extra time.  I mean really?  We are busy.  Life in this century is busy and dramatically different from life 50 years ago.  Everything is constantly moving at a crazy fast pace.  However, we need to learn to prioritize.  One of my favorite quotes is from Christy Wright, “We don’t have a time problem, we have a priority problem!”  Amen sister.  Think about it, if we actually WANT to do something we are pretty good at finding the time to do it.  Take working out or going to the gym.  Not many of us WANT to do that.  It easily becomes one of those things that we simply cannot find the time for.  If we turn our mind set around and make getting that gym session in a priority we will find the time.  Make it a have-to.  Schedule it in.  Write it in your planner or on your Google calendar.  If you start the day saying “I’m going to try to get to the gym” then you won’t.  If you say “I’m going to the gym at 4:00 pm today” then you will.

I’m willing to bet most of you have heard the saying “happy wife happy life”.  Well it’s true.  If mom ain’t happy then nobody is!  But it goes a lot deeper than kids behaving and your hubby bringing home flowers.  YOU need to figure out and do what makes YOU happy.  Is it a weekly meet up with your girlfriends for coffee?  A bi-weekly  mani-pedi?  Daily gym session?  A quiet 30 minutes a day to read or do a daily devotional?  Perhaps (and most likely) it’s a combination of things.

I found that I had lost myself very easily after the twins came.  Adjusting to motherhood and where that fell in the rest of my life was rough.  As it is for most women I assume.  Then I realized I was just not taking care of myself.  When they were about 1 1/2 it hit me and I realized I needed to refocus and get back on track with a life that made me feel great, not just good.

Two things for me are working out and reading with some girlfriend time a couple times a month.  If I don’t read daily it throws me off.  I always read before bed, for around 30 minutes.  All this involves is me going to bed a little earlier.  It also helps clear my mind and gets me away from electronics for a while before I shut down for the night.  I also take my book to the boys lessons and such so I can sit and read while I wait for them.  As for working out I would love to do so seven days a week but it’s honestly more like five due to the family schedule.  I’m still good with that though!  Life is a give and take.  And I refuse to wake up earlier than I do to work out!  I’ve gone through bouts where I can’t work out regularly and boy do I know it!  I don’t sleep as well, I’m more irritable, and just don’t feel like me.  It’s amazing what a few days a week of mindful exercise can do.  It’s important to find what you love too.  I hate running.  I mean hate.  But I know a lot of people who love it so that’s their thing.  For me it’s Pure Barre, some Beachbody home workouts, weekly dance class, and occasional gym cardio sessions.  Find what works for you.  I can’t stress that enough.

So, what do you love?  What brings you peace?  What allows you to recharge and be the best you?  It can be anything!  But do something.  I promise, you will be a better wife, mother, friend, sister, daughter, employee, boss, whatever roll it is you fill (and I’m sure it’s many) you will be better at it.  Stop losing yourself in your busy. In your kids. In your career.  Once you find yourself and focus on yourself you will find that you like yourself more and you are much better at wearing all those hats.