Wednesday, December 7, 2016

What The F#$k Makes Me Happy list


Earlier this year I was going through some stuff. Let's just leave it at that annoying, standard, non-specific explanation that drives everyone crazy :) Forgive me for being vague.

Anyway, amidst this stuff, I analyzed a lot, as I tend to do. You know when you're going through something really difficult and you suddenly feel like you're in the middle of a foreign country? This results from a changing perspective, from going through something so challenging that clarity strips away all the superficial priorities that once defined your time. It can get rather annoying how suddenly you lose all sense of who you are and what's important to you.

So that's where I found myself months ago and I was taken aback at how suddenly I stopped caring for certain things - friendships that once mattered a great deal to me, having a clean home, perusing the internet, social media, even the work that once filled me. I just didn't give a shit anymore. The problem was I had no idea what I DID care about, other than the obvious answer of my children. But in my funk I knew I needed more. I couldn't rely solely on my kids to fill my cup and my sense of purpose in the world. What a burden that would be for them.

The good thing about these times (or should I say ONE of the good things) is that the false securities we hang on to in order to feel fulfilled are completely unmasked and it becomes apparent what we really need in order to serve the world and ourselves.

During this period, I sat at my computer and opened up a brand new document, titling it:

WHAT THE FUCK MAKES ME HAPPY???

(yep, it really was all in capitals, with many question marks at the end. I was annoyed that these answers didn't come so easily or naturally to me.)

I started with one thing. I won't share with you my entire list, just the first few to give you an idea.
But I wrote down the first thing during that time that had managed to create even the faintest spark in my heart:

1. Family time and creating new memories

That was about it. The time I had with my family was what made me happy. Anything else could take a hike and I would be content. But I knew I needed to add more because I couldn't spend all day every day with my family, and I knew that ultimately that wouldn't completely fulfill me either. I needed to look more internally.

2. Challenging my body (like hill runs).

Yep, during really emotional times I like to be in my body. It causes me to be fully aware of the present moment and live within it rather than in the past or the future. And, pushing through physical discomfort amps up my adrenaline like nothing else. I feel powerful and strong when I push my body.

3. Surrounding myself with amazing women.

I somehow managed to hit the jackpot in the friend category and it's only been a recent win. All my life I have actively chosen to surround myself with only a handful of girls. I'm such an introvert I could never handle large groups of friends nor was I ever willing to open my heart up to that many people. So as I was shifting into this difficult space this year, the door opened up and this large gaggle of ridiculously supportive, encouraging, uplifting women wandered in and insisted on holding my hands and my heart through it all. They cried with me, laughed for me, did my laundry, fed me and held space for me to process whatever emotions popped up. Without questioning or fixing or shrinking. And I am insanely grateful for them all, who inspire and encourage me to always be my best and never allow me to settle for anything less than joy.

So those are the top three things on my list that came into my head as things that kept me feeling alive.
I have 11 things on my list (which took a good week to brainstorm) but I don't want to share them all with you. Instead, I want you to look inward after stripping away all the time killers you indulge in to really zone in on what's important to YOU. I would love for you to try this and share with me if you're comfortable doing so. It's like a de-cluttering of your life. Like becoming a minimalist of your spirit. Oh and feel free to title it something else that resonates with you...perhaps something a little more on the pleasant and positive side??

When you find yourself in a funk and engage in an activity that brings you a smile, write that down. It's easy to forget what brings us joy when we're in the throes of a pity party. Notice what warms your heart and arouses your curiosity. And during those times you just feel like cocooning from everything in life, open up this list and spend time doing one of the things on it. I promise your heart will fill in a very sustainable way.

xoxo

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