Hey guess what! It's January 7th! I'm definitely that person who always has the highest of expectation and the best of intentions to do BIG things but ultimately takes on too much, spreads myself too thin and fails at more than I succeed at. Even though we are a week into the new year and I am just now setting my New Year resolutions and attempting to set a new schedule for myself I am heavily optimistic about 2014.
I've been contemplating how I would even begin to sum up 2013 or start 2014. 2013 was unexpected and completely different than I had planned or anticipated. I began the year by choosing my One Little Word which was my first attempt at doing the OLW challenge. I had chosen the word “Lovely” and honestly believed in my heart that 2013 was going to be all roses and rainbows and that I was just gonna attack life and really conquer the world.
In February I found out I was pregnant, SURPRISE! It was quite the twist for 2013 and even though the Boss and I had been talking about adding #4 to our family we hadn't quite planned or anticipated it happening so soon. I can honestly say that I know Ivory came exactly when she was supposed to whether Bret and I were prepared or not. With that being said it doesn't mean that I was ready immediately for this new change of plans.
To keep a very long story short I was really sick and really REALLY struggled with depression and fatigue throughout the majority of my pregnancy. I've never experienced depression like I did during those months and I almost felt like it had handicapped my ability to live. I didn't feel like myself a lot of the time and felt like no matter how hard I tried I couldn't snap out of it. I knew in my mind what I was capable of and was holding my usual expectations for myself over my head. I felt like on my best day during this pregnancy I couldn't accomplish what I could get done on my worst day before I got pregnant.
I was perpetually disappointed with my non contributing self and was a burning negativity inferno. I couldn't gain a greater perspective over what I was actually doing…. like you know, making a person! Fast forward to when Ivory was born, the lights went back on and I snapped out of it. Even when she was in the NICU I felt uplifted by the comments and prayers from everyone around me and had a sense of peace about everything.
I felt like myself again, I felt happy, I felt blessed and I felt energy again! I can now look back and say that whatever I did or didn't accomplish doesn't matter to me. My little Button makes up for all my failures and shortcomings in 2013 and I chalk the year up to being a success. I'm of course paraphrasing quite a bit about the good, the bad and the ugly of the year and maybe I will be able to do a few recap posts about 2013 and hopefully share about Ivory's birth story as well. I know as I take the time to reflect on the past year I will recognize more and more blessings and accomplishments.
It is now a new year and time to announce my new word for 2014 which is “Ta Da“! Last year I was a speaker at SNAP and while I was there I had the opportunity to listen to Julie Hanks talk about emotional survival for women who feel overwhelmed.
“Overwhelmed” is something I relate to intensely so I listened eagerly and soaked up everything Julie had to say. What impacted me the most was when she pointed out how we as women tend to be far too hard on ourselves. I for one should be president of the guilty club because I constantly feel guilty for not being smart enough, clean enough, organized enough, happy enough, healthy enough, nice enough, fun enough, creative enough, spiritual enough, athletic enough, selfless enough…. you get the idea.
Julie talked about how women make these long and extreme “To Do” lists for themselves each day and then punish themselves when they don't finish everything on their list. Not only do they agonize over what they didn't accomplish but they completely neglect to give themselves credit for the things they do accomplish each day.
She suggested having a “Ta Da” list for the end of the day where you write down each achievement from that day no matter how big or small. I could have climbed across the banquet table I was sitting at and picked up little bity Julie and swung her around and around in my arms in a jolly good hug to thank her for giving me permission to rejoice in my small defeats each day and to stop beating myself up emotionally over the things I have yet to do. Old habits die hard and I still give myself internal guilt trips when I suck at life but here and there a light turns on and I remember to acknowledge my daily triumphs.
This year choosing my word was easy, I knew I wanted to chose “Ta Da” so I could get better at making a Ta Da List and not being so hard on myself. I know I need an attitude adjustment and that I need to get in the habit of keeping score of all the good things that happens and not be so hard on myself about what I haven't gotten done yet.
Some victories may only be “I put a bra on today, TA DA!” or “I kept the kids alive all day today, TA DA!” and my goal is to be ok with that. I mean wearing a bra is a chore sometimes and kids are hard to keep alive, you gotta feed them and everything! My hope is that as I start to recognize each little thing I do as a win it will be a catalyst for getting more done and generate more momentum for positive productivity.
I wanna change my mindset to believe that I don't have to move mountains every single day and that maybe moving little tiny pebbles is all part of the process of moving that big ol' fatty mountain. I know that because I am only human that some days I might forget to do my “ta da” list so I have been putting up little reminders in my house and I will be hash tagging #TaDa like a boss! Also, saying “TA DA!” out loud is pretty fun! I hope you will take something positive from this post and that you find yourself saying “ta da!” for your own achievements as well.
(I made this printable so I could print it at Persnickety Prints and put it on my desk as a reminder for myself. Feel free to print a copy for yourself if you want. #TaDa)
If you want to start doing a “ta da” list with me I designed a free printable you can download and print it by clicking [here]. Free Printable… #TaDa!
PS. Look how stinkin cute the “ta da” earrings by Kate Spade are! I looked everywhere to try and buy some but they seem to be discontinued. Phooey!
PPS. I wrote a blog post, #TaDa!
Did you pick out your own One Little Word? I would love to hear what it is and why you picked it! We can help each other stick to our words!