Everyone has ‘that friend’ or knows ‘that person’ that is more flaky than bran cereal. Which is why I call these friends ‘Bran Cereal People’. Each time you make plans or they say they’ll help out with something you automatically assume they’re going to bail out. And 98% of the time you’re correct. On the other hand, there are the faithful ones that are completely reliable. Then there’s the rest of us that fall in between these two ends of the spectrum. I have had my fair share of ‘ohhh crap I’m going to have to cancel’ moments but I do my best to follow through. In the flight or fight natural reactions I identify totally with the flighters. Although I can handle conflict well, my insides scream otherwise. I find myself replaying the quote, “No matter how you feel get up, get dressed, and show up” all the time. Mainly when having to do with 5am work shifts or an afternoon brunch with people who are just going to ask me why I’m not married yet.
I get irritated with people who don’t have ‘good enough’ excuses for things. You not making it to a dinner that’s been scheduled for a month because you have to watch your TV show just doesn’t cut it. I have sacrificed way too much sleep for my favorite TV show, Grey’s Anatomy, but it only affects myself so I let it slide. I’ve pondered my frustration and have come up with one simple thing. Honor your commitments. Whether it’s big or small. Honor it. I wish we would all adopt these three simple words and hold each other to them. I’m much more likely to not duck out on someone who doesn’t duck out on me. It’s just human nature. Valuing people and their time is important. When you say you’re going to pick up your niece from school, be there. When you commit to being in a month long book study, be there. If you are a youth leader at church, show up. A lot is said by someone’s character by how they honor their commitments. If you can’t commit, don’t sign up for it. All that follows is disappointment and frustration. So just be noble!
The twin sister of honoring commitments is to be present. Have you even been with someone but their mind is somewhere else? I’m betting we all have. It causes a million questions like am I not funny enough, do I not have as much value, do you even care that I exist, or are you just that self involved that you don’t notice your attention is elsewhere? Most of the time the person doing it isn’t aware of it. We all multitask too much and give different priority to things. If I’ve had a long week I sometimes just lack the energy to give to one more person. That’s normal and okay, it just needs to be communicated. People matter and when we are with them, we should give ourselves to whatever it is we are doing. Being mindful of our surroundings and adapting our attitude to fit the situation is key in creating a life of meaning that affects others in a positive way.
I could not stress these two things enough. I think about them constantly and want to make a paddle with each of these phrases on them so I can hit people upside the head when needed. Oh, good idea! Just kidding, there’s no Netflix in prison. Anyway, we would all benefit from a little more of these in our lives.
Traditions and holidays are two of the most life giving amenities. Some people only see family drama, and as prevelant as that is, there is so much more to celebrate. We have two choices in life: to live celebratory or stagnant. We would all have to agree that life’s basis is perspective, so I choose the first so that I may have much more smiles than frowns! Here are my top three favorite ways of living a celebratory life.
1. Holidays/Traditions: My family has extravagant celebrations for almost all holidays. Mainly because my mom has ten siblings and we like to come together as much as possible. Adding onto these decade long traditions is even more fun. If you don’t have traditions, make them! Everyone has their unique interests and talents so celebrate them but creating fun things to do with other people. Encourage others to live a celebratory life!
2. Celebrate others! Wait, that means if someone does something/gets something I want I should be kind and humble enough to be happy for them? YES. Exactly. Enough selfish shinanigans. My friends and family are rad and I love the moments when I get to give them a gold star! Human nature says keep all your gold stars but once you start handing them out you will feel a new kind of unexplainable joy. If you take this gold star then you must give it away. No gold star hoarding! ⭐️
3. Choose joy. This may seem off topic but choosing joy allows the celebratory life to exist. For example, on a run a few weeks ago I ran a mile in wayyyyyy too long of a time. I was initially upset then I said no, I’m going to choose joy. I had laced up my shoes and gone dispite the excuses I could’ve made up. That’s something to celebrate. You woke up late? Thats frustrating but you’re alive. It rained on your good hair day? Bummer but you have hair and you’re not dying from a lack of clean water. Choose joy. Like I said before, I’m living for more smiles than frowns!
Not everything will include hot air balloons and umpteen boquets of red roses, unfortunately not much will. How awesome would that be tbough?! Okay, totally beside the point. The only one who can give your soul direction is you. You choose celebratory or stagnant. You choose smiles or frowns. You choose gold stars or sharp stabs. It’s all you. Happy choosing!
“What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others.”
I find myself with too many thoughts whirling around in my head constantly and subjecting the people around me to listen to them. Most of the time they humor me and even chime in but others give that deer in the headlights look that is screaming “stoooooop!”. Either way, communication is something I value; I tend to fall into the over communication category almost always. To help fill the void I journal often, but I never seem to have enough space. Writing thoughts has a way of helping me process and learn about myself and the world around me. This blog is an experiment for myself and an opportunity to grow. Whether the subject is a simple joy of life or a heart wrenching realization of yet another injustice; my thoughts will be put here into the abyss and maybe connect with someone else’s thoughts. There’s a great chance that no one will ever lay eyes on this other than myself, and I am okay with that. So here’s to doing things I’ve said I’d never do and becoming a more well rounded human. xoxo