One of the greatest things about this life is our ability to chart our own course. We have the opportunity each and every day to wake up in the morning and make a decision about what we want to do, who we want to be. Regardless of the responsibilities and commitments set out for us, we have played a role in creating those expectations.
So in pondering this concept, a question about “vision” popped in to my head today.
What is your vision for yourself?
What do you want for your life? For your career? For your relationships?
What choices do you make each and everyday that enhance or detract from that vision?
My vision is one of leadership. No matter what endeavor it is in my life, I always seem to be drawn to helping drive the mission. I am not afraid of leading, even when I am not 100% sure of what I am doing…because I know in my heart that if I believe in the mission, everything else will fall in to place. I know that I will work as hard as I possibly can to assist in the process of achieving the team’s collective goals and in the process will educate myself to help the team get there.
In my relationships, I have a vision of honesty, openness and love. Whether it’s a co-worker or a loved one, I strive to be open and honest with the people I encounter in my life…even when it’s difficult. I find that honesty is the quickest path to peace and acceptance, with oneself and with others.
So I ask you, what is your vision? What does your best life look like?
Who do you want to be?
It is inevitable as we embark on new chapters in our lives that we will be presented with challenges that we often don’t feel ready for.
I am experiencing this firsthand as I navigate pregnancy. I find it interesting that when I have candid conversations with friends and family about some of the emotions I am experiencing that they do one of a few things:
1) Comfort, listen thoughtfully and tell me that this too shall pass.
2) Compare their own personal stories as a means of comfort…surely if they were able to endure the struggle their own experience offered, I can too.
3) Highlight someone who has it “worse,” so as to remind me that I, perhaps, should not be complaining. Again, this too shall pass.
All well-intentioned and coming from a place of love, of course.
Yet, it’s interesting to me to examine how many mothers I’ve spoken to seem to have forgotten, entirely, their own personal experience during their very first pregnancy. They remember the highlights; but, now that they are mothers. Now that they have met their child, all of the precursor emotions and fears no longer seems to matter.
I think I understand this. I see the twinkle in the eyes of new moms and moms who have been for many years. I see the joy their child brings them, the depth and breadth of their love. And I have no doubt I will feel the same way and all of the fears I am experiencing now will wash away when I meet our child; however, there’s a big part of me that does not want to forget. I don’t want to forget this version of me. The one that doesn’t know yet. The one that can relate years down the road to the first time mother to be…”irrational fears” and all.
We often spend a great deal of time worrying about things that never come to fruition, though, I believe that worry has a purpose. And in this case, it is uncharted territory, new waters I have never entered before.
A friend told me, “This story is yours and yours alone.”
We are all the authors of our own stories and while others in our lives are characters in our stories, they do not have the authority to put pen to paper for us.
I’m back and it feels so good. The only thing is that everything is different now.
I’m not great at remaining in the present. For the last 4 months, I have only wanted to hit fast forward for a multitude of reasons. First being to escape the wrath of morning (noon and night) sickness; but, I’ve also learned that when you’re pregnant, you now live with a subtle wave of fear constantly welling up inside, releasing, then building again.
Welcome to parenthood.
I’m pregnant. A life-long dream..it’s here.
There are two heart beats inside my body at this very moment. The mere thought of this precious being brings me to tears in an instant.
The last 4 months have been difficult. I have been sick. every. single. day. Fortunately It has finally lifted and I am feeling like myself again. I even went for a run yesterday. It was certainly a humbling experience and a lesson, in and of itself. But I did it. And will keep working at it. For both of us.
I am embarking on this new chapter of our lives with an open mind and an open heart. I am equally excited and terrified. Regardless, I have faith in knowing that love will lead the way.
What if there is a “plan” for each of us?
Have you ever looked back on your life at the moments, the intersections of fate, the episodes that just seemed to unfold in such a way that your destiny seemed like it was plotted out by a higher power?
I often think about moments in my own life, from meeting my husband, to transferring to UNH back in 2000, to becoming friends with different individuals that have had a profound impact on my life. Was it all by chance? Or was there a greater “plan” beyond my control that brought these circumstances to me?
Recently, I was at a crossroads in my life. It was a distinct choice that had to be made and I toiled over it, reaching, striving, to make the right decision. In the end, I feel 100% certain that I made the right choice for the map of my life, yet, I do find myself wondering at times what would the map look like if I had made a different decision. Was that lesson given to me to help me reflect on the greater purpose of my life?
2013 is sure to behold many treasures. Answers. Clarity. Joy. Fear. New beginnings. Fulfillment. Hurt. A New Normal. I wonder where the plan will take us next…
How often do you hear this word?
There are many uses for the term, yet, in today’s society of instant celebrity, mobile everything and less face to face interaction, the gap continues to widen.
Boundaries are a funny thing you say you need to do a better job of creating. Whether it is to save your evenings with your family or your personal time, the proverbial brick walls we put up to protect ourselves can be uncomfortable, austere.
I might counter that the term, boundaries, in and of itself, is what we use to remind ourselves to honor that which matters most in our lives. And it occurs to me, that there might be a need for a new movement. One in which we support one another. One in which we advocate that cell phones are turned off every now and again (gasp) and that maybe, families sitting around a dinner table to discuss family things is just what we need.
I grew up with the privilege of having parents that recognized the importance of family dinners. My mother is an incredible cook and her “zen” place is around the dinner table with the people she loves the most. Candlelit dinners…music…every night.
My brother and I reflect on this fondly and are very close with our parents. We go home often and each and every time we are there for a family dinner, there is music, there are candles, there is love.
These are sacred moments. Ones that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
So back to boundaries…are they necessary? Absolutely. Is there a way to create a shift in your life to protect what’s most sacred to you? Absolutely. Will it take work? You bet.
To begin, honor yourself…what matters MOST to you in this life?
Remember that this is your life. There will always be bills to pay, appointments to make, pounds to lose, work to do…I encourage you to stay mindful of what matters and what doesn’t. Eventually…boundaries won’t feel like brick walls, instead they begin to bend and flow, creating a safe space around the things you love most.
What would happen if you let go…
of the stress, the angst, the anticipation, the quiet disapproval that chips away at so many aspects of our lives?
What would it look like if you woke up this morning feeling satisfied…
with what you saw in the mirror, with the life all around you, with the perfect imperfection of your loved ones and yourself?
What would it feel like to…
exercise simply to feel your heart beating and the air rushing in and out of your lungs, go for a walk to take in the nature that surrounds you, call someone you love just to tell them that?
What your life be without…
the judgment, the constant pursuit of approval, the bad feelings that go along with that pursuit?
How would you do things differently if…
you knew every little thing was going to be alright, you realized you were the one in control, you truly believed in yourself?
What would happen if you let go?