Friday, June 13, 2008

Okay, so it didn't quite work...

Last week, I went to a water park, got a little "extra" sun, and set out determined to NOT give any energy to the possibility of a sunburn. I'm obviously a big believer in power thinking, and I really wanted to power think my way to a nice tan!

The problem all along was one of the silly voices in my head, waaaay back in the back, that kept telling me it wouldn't work this time! Silly, silly, pesky voices. They won this round, I hate to say -- I'm a flaking mess!

I know that a big part of thought work requires that I'm aware of the thoughts I'm thinking. And I was fully aware of the negative thoughts. And I must say that I knew, at the time, that I could have done more to change the thoughts. But I didn't really work all that hard at it. Doesn't make much sense, does it! we get into a whole bunch of other issues. Worthiness comes to mind. As does practicality, maybe a dash of reality...all of which are very subjective. Who decides what's practical? What, exactly, is reality? And worthiness...seriously?! I'm not even gonna go there!

My biggest lesson here is NOT that I need to use more sunscreen -- although I did do that today when I went back to the water park!! My biggest lesson is that I have a lot o work to do to continue to challenge the silly voices in my head. The voices that tell me that it won't work, that I don't want to get up earlier to get to the rec center, that whatever project I need to be working on is just too much work and I'll never get it done. THOSE voices. I really don't like those fact, I think I'll be bold enough to say that I HATE those voices. I want them gone!

That will take time and awareness and practice. Well, more like intention. Intention with a LOT more energy than I have applied so far! I imagine the results will be worth the effort. At the very least, it'll be a lot quieter in my head!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Maybe I'm Just More Mature...

Once upon a time, I was a teenager. And when I was a teenager, I CARED. A LOT.

Not about current events or politics or environmental issues. I cared about how I looked. My hair, my clothes, my makeup...these were my top 3 concerns as a teenager.

I suppose that made me a pretty average teenager! My biggest battles were with my hair -- it's very curly, coarse, and thick, and I was reluctant to embrace it in its natural state! Throughout high school I experimented with various ways of taming it, most ending up in frustration the minute I walked out the door! Humidity...ugh!

For some reason, when I was younger, what I looked like on the outside mattered far more than it probably should have. While inside I was a bit of a mess, I did what I could to make sure that outside looked at least okay. I made sure that, before I walked out the door, I was fairly "put together". It took a bit of time and attention, although I must say, compared to what I've experience with various teenage girls in my life, I was WAY low maintenance! But it really did matter to me what I looked like.

I caught a look at myself in the mirror a few minutes ago, and my how times change!! Sure, I still care how I look, but it seems that, any more, if I'm going to invest my time in getting done up, it better be for a pretty good reason! Like church! Or dinner out! Or getting on a plane!

I'm not sure when this happened! I'm a bit surprised at how I allowed myself to look when I went to a small group meeting at my church this evening! No make-up, most of my hair pulled back in a frizzy pony-tail...not my best look, to be sure! (Yes, my clothes were clean! Whew!!)

So I gotta ask myself -- what's going on here? Why the sharp drop in standards? Maybe it's know, it's more laid-back, slower paced, too blasted hot to think about putting on make-up! It's been awfully humid here in North Texas. That has to have affected my results!

Maybe it's some new-found deep level of maturity -- as I grow in confidence in myself I find myself less concerned about externals. After all, peace comes from within and has nothing to do with whether or not I'm wearing spring or fall eye shadow colors. Honestly, I've never really understood the difference there!

As good as that all sounds, I fear the reason may be truly, utterly, shamefully simple -- I'm just bein' lazy! I have a lot to do and never enough time to do it...primping tends to fall down the list a bit! Sure, the heat affects that, and it's true to some degree that I'm not basing my self-approval or confidence on whether or not my make-up is picture perfect. That's a good thing! But at the end of the day, the truth remains -- I just didn't feel like messing with it!

To the ladies in my small group meeting earlier this evening -- sorry! Don't take it personally! I just ran out of time! I'll do better next time...I think!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Structure, Part 2...

I'm finding it a bit difficult to get my days and nights turned back around! Here I sit again, too late in the evening, knowing that I need to be getting off to dreamland...and needing to get one more thing done. I've been here before -- as in pretty much every day since my daughter got out of school! And every night (early morning) when I crawl into bed, I do the math in my mind -- how early do I want to get to the rec center, so what time do I need to get up, so how much (little) sleep will I get...and I resolve that TOMORROW WILL BE DIFFERENT!!

When, exactly, is "tomorrow"? It's apparently, in my world, not the day after this one! And I know this because I keep doing mostly the same thing today that I did yesterday, and if today was yesterday's tomorrow, then I didn't do the things tomorrow that I said today that I would do tomorrow!! Did you get all that?!

Every once in a while I wonder if I shouldn't just give in and be a nocturnal creature. I've heard that some people seem to be wired for night work. But then I read an article about sleep that stated that NOBODY is naturally "wired" for night shifts, just as NOBODY is naturally able to function optimally on less than 7 hours of sleep every night. That's my other wish -- that I was one of those people who just didn't need to sleep! So far, that one hasn't come to reality. Bummer.

I'm beginning to wonder if this is going to be the story of my summer -- intending to do something different than I did. Doesn't sound like a very empowering way to spend a summer!! It sounds an awful lot like I'd be spending a lot of time beating myself up. To which I say -- WHAT?!?! Why would I do that? I've done enough of that throughout my life! I'm over being beaten up by myself!!

Somewhere there is balance, there is the structure I desire. And I suppose that once I desire it enough to actually DO something about it, then change will occur. I need to DESIRE structure to the point where I'm driven to create it NO MATTER WHAT!!

Will that happen? WHEN will that happen?! I dunno...stand by!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Dream Boards!

One of the goals I set for myself for 2008 was to have an active Dream Board. I was fired up about it in January -- so much so that I put up a makeshift version made out of a file folder, taped my first picture on it, and pinned it to my wall! I was on my way! I had a long list of things I wanted to put on it, and I was ready to get it all put together! I was EXCITED!!

Then came February...then March...then April...then May...! Somewhere along the way I bought a piece of poster board, which then sat blank for a while before I put it away. I had another picture that I'd pulled out to tape on it, and I had certainly given thought to other pictures I wanted to add. But I hadn't really taken action on it. It was still rolling around in my head.

The problem with that is that there are soooooo many other things rolling around in my head at any given time, it's easy for things like Dream Board details to get pushed aside. It's not an immediate need, after all, and there are always so many other pressing things that need time and energy. But none of them really brought to my life what I knew my Dream Board would bring -- which was the ability to see what I want, to look at it multiple times a day, and therefore have something that will be the target point of my energy.

I heard a statement recently about visible reminders: Visible is memorable. If I just think about something and store it in my mind, it's very easy for me to forget it. But if I can look at it every day, I'm constantly reminded of it, and knowing how the human mind works, I knew that my Dream Board would have no power as long as it just stayed in my head. It needed to come to life and reality.

So, I'm VERY proud to say, my Dream Board is UP! I got out the poster board, started aggressively seeking pictures, got my glue stick out and started constructing! Now it's about half-full, and I'm still printing pictures! It's prominently displayed on my wall where I can see it several times a day (especially when sitting at my computer!), and I'm so excited to have this visible, memorable representation of my goals! It gives me a boost of energy to look at it, to study the pictures, to see the life I'm working toward! If it's true that we move in the direction of our focus (which I fully believe!), then I'm moving in a very exciting direction, and I'm anxious to start bringing these things to fruition in m life! But I didn't just stop there! I also posted affirmations, a copy of my personal mission statement, and one of my favorite quotes from Robin Sharma (it's actually a 3-paragraph quote!)! I'm surrounding myself more and more with words and pictures that are specifically designed to move me forward. And I'm 100% sure that it will make a difference!

If left to its own devices, my mind will not do me the favor of helping me move forward. That's why I love the power of my Dream Board -- it gives my mind something intentional to focus on. And life lived intentionally is lived FAR better than life lived accidentally. Think about that!