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hey you too much thinking not enough doing

 

Saw this little gem on Pinterest the other day while I was having a no good very bad terrible evening and it has had me thinking for a few days.  That’s one terrible side effect of Pinterest, actually.  I looooooove all the ideas, but I get too caught up in other people’s ideas or advice, and it’s keeping me from my own actions.  Plus this pregnancy has me somewhat anxious about life and I’ve been allowing this to keep me from taking small steps on ANYTHING – sometimes to the point of not even cleaning up the kitchen or some such inconsequential thing.  So today, in a good frame of mind, I decided to take two small actions.

First, about a week ago I had agreed to create a professional community space on Google+ but have been dragging my feet.  Finally did that, and actually put it out for people to join (the really hard part).  Normally stuff like this isn’t intimidating, but lately it has been.  I am also trying to think of how I might turn this need that I’m seeing in my day job into a profit center, but am not there yet.  So might as well begin building the network and it does fit nicely into my work responsibilities so it feels a bit safer than if I were just a random person trying to do it on my own.

Second, I attended an alumnae meeting for my alma mater on the topic of starting up an alumnae business directory.  I volunteered to do one small task for the next meeting, and have already done it.  Now I just need to let it percolate and might make some other changes before we meet again.

Hoping these actions spur more!

Xmas Adventures and New Times Ahead

Must be better about grabbing photos, but that’s ok . . . better to write something than nothing at all!  We have had a few fun adventures this Xmas break.  First, we waited in a car line for about 40 minutes to see the IBEW/King of Kings Lights In the Park display at Lake Phalen.  It captivated us not so much in a beautiful way but rather in trying to figure out how they had set up the displays to do what they did.  We enjoyed it and all the money goes to charitable causes.  This event is on until Jan. 1, 2014.

Today we went on our annual Christmas experience with my in-laws.  I love that this has now become a tradition.  Some of our past excursions have included Como Conservatory to see the poinsettia display, a show in downtown Minneapolis with dinner at The Oak Grill, and a visit to the Purcell-Cutts house (a prairie style home that is part of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts collection).  Another year we delayed our adventure until the spring and took a ride on the historic streetcar at Excelsior.  Today we went to a Victorian Christmas tour of the Alexander Ramsey House in St. Paul and then out for a delicious lunch at St. Paul Grill.

I have a hankering to visit the MIA over break.  Haven’t been in a few years and figure I should scratch this itch while I have time.

In other news, I finished Daring Greatly.  It was no small feat.  Reading it was like having someone peer into my soul.  It was much more difficult than I expected!  So, naturally, I had to buy the book.  🙂  I felt I shouldn’t be depriving other library patrons any longer and the nature of the work will be ongoing, so I will need a copy to refer back to.  One of the points I’m really trying to work on is actively practicing gratitude as a way to combat foreboding joy, or never allowing yourself to fully feel joy because it must mean something awful is going to happen just around the corner – I’m awful about this and have not allowed myself to enjoy my pregnancy too deeply because of it.  That was a hard realization to come to.  By actively practicing gratitude, we can help ourselves realize that our cups are more full than empty, and that the other shoe does not always drop – it’s ok to revel in the joy of a moment or experience.  Not quite sure how I’ll do it yet – planning to set up a gratitude jar for us to put in little slips of paper when we feel gratitude for something, but beyond that, again, not sure.  Going to church would probably help, that always inspires great feelings of thankfulness.

I am also reading The Happiness Project, which I felt would be kind of gimmicky, but I’m really  getting into it.  She has attracted criticism for working on her “perfect” life, which is kind of how I have felt when undertaking any kind of changes in my own life – like, what problems do I have?  What right do I have to try to improve anything when I already have such a wonderful life compared to what so many others are living?  But she argues that the time to work on being your happiest is not when you are in terrible straits; you need those skills, networks, practices to support you in bad times.  But all of the above are developed in good times!  Also, who else will help me to be happier if not myself?  I can’t say I am unhappy, but I know I could be making the most of this life and am not.  So reading that – reading that she has really no “real” problems but still wants to undertake her happiness project – was reassuring and almost like permission to do what I need to do.  Like, we all have room to grow and if others have to think something of it, well, whatever, they don’t have to live this life – only I do.

So one of the things that is standing out from The Happiness Project so far is documenting happy memories – that looking at photos and mementos help us remember happy times and resultingly feel happier.  So I’d like to get back into taking, printing, displaying, scrapbooking more photos (ha! ties in with the first sentence of this post) and also reconnecting with this blog.

Last thing that’s been on my mind!  🙂  I’m really digging Michelle Ward lately.  I just love her upbeat but super practical resources.  She shared Alternatives to New Year’s Resolutions that she blogged on someone else’s blog and the idea of choosing a word for the year has got me thinking hard.  With a baby on the way in April, some work changes, and a nagging feeling that it’s time for me to do something different with my paid employment but never quite sure what, I am leaning toward words like “flexibility,” “openness,” “flow,” etc.  I think I try to over-control and it’s gotten me nowhere.  Plus, I think with not knowing how it will feel/look/be to become parents, it might be a bit self-defeating to set a concrete “resolution” type goal.  I want to be more open to seeing what comes this year and to treasure it, and not to strive so hard.  It reminds me of when I started dating my DH.  It was only because I decided “no more dating” that I was able to stop all the associated shenanigans long enough to become open to the possibility of seeing him.  🙂  Oh, the irony.  I wonder what would happen if I swore off goal-setting/striving/planning/concocting and just waited to see what might happen?

Still reading?!  You win a prize!!!  🙂

The week’s adventures

Have been up to some adventures this week.  It’s so much easier when we’re off work!

  • Some new doggy walking routes
  • Poking around in salvage stores and scoring at least one deal for our house and getting other good ideas
  • Watching fireworks from the in-laws’ deck
  • Putting together the website and initial plan for a new small business:  Crafty Delight.  In my mind I wasn’t going to count anything computer-based as an adventure for this blog, but it was new and it engaged me for many hours this week.  I also designed the logo with GIMP, that was brand new and a bit frustrating, but I have rudimentary use of a design program now, so that’s good.

Off for some camping for a few days!  Yippee!