It was about 5 years ago that I went through a similar experience to what I am going through right now. As you probably all know by now I have 4 boys, and it was 5 years ago that my eldest, Dalton, left to serve a 2 year mission for our church. What I found was that as the time approached I became frustrated, could cry if someone looked at me wrong, and I was very angry. I see an “energy” guy and he told me that because I was essentially fighting the emotions of sadness, which at times can feel like a death…and I was making the whole experience painful and frustrating!
As I navigate what I am currently going through, which is the upcoming departure for 2 years of my second son, Canyon, I have found myself in the same boat. After not knowing how to handle my emotions with Dalton, and actually getting angry at myself for feeling what I considered “weak” feelings at the time, I decided that this time I needed to figure out a better way to handle it. I am still feeling all the same things, but what I have started to do is first ask for help and guidance from my God and I have also learned to recognize when these feelings of frustration and anger hit me and I choose to ride the wave instead of being angry about it!
So…here’s the hardest part of the whole process: How do you know and be conscious of those feelings and emotions that are happening to you? It can be really tricky to catch yourself amidst these emotions and do an about face…but it can be done! Here’s how I have found works for me…
I promise you, it may sound hokey, but it really has been working for me. I am still super sad about Canyon leaving, I could still cry at the drop of a hat, but I don’t allow anger, frustration or stress about it to take over me! I welcome the feeling because I know what it means – that I love my son so much it hurts. That I want to honor him in a way that doesn’t involve stress and I want to enjoy every last minute that I have with him.
I would love to hear if you try some of my steps above and if they work for you…comment below!
The older I get the more I realize that I didn’t really know myself when I was younger. I was pretty much just flying by the seat of my pants and not really thinking about it…but that’s not true anymore. I definitely focus on thoughtfulness, and paying attention to me and how I am feeling. What I have found is that the more I pay attention to me, the more I am able to not just react to situations but I am able to recognize triggers that show up for me and adjust accordingly (of course, I definitely still get it wrong sometimes).
You may be asking how it’s possible to be more thoughtful and notice things as they come up…so I’m going to let you know what I do and it works for me.
Having a relationship with yourself, and really knowing who you are is truly the only way to live. As I reflect on all of my life and realize that a lot of it was spent in reaction mode, it makes me even more determined to focus on being present and knowing what I need and how to give it to myself.
Do you have some ways that you make sure you are taking of YOU? Comment below – I would love to hear!
I realized a long time ago that if I have a cluttered space then my mind and thoughts seem to be cluttered too! The biggest problem with this is that I live in a home filled with all males and they don’t seem to have the same feelings I do about organization.
At one time I would have been frustrated by the lack of tidiness, organization, and clutter, but somehow over the past 20 years I have figured out a way to let it go…(cue song from Frozen) and just focus on the things I can control. There are certain areas of my home that are mine, and pretty much everyone knows to either stay out or leave them alone. The entry way is not one of them, and the dining table seems to be a magnet for just about anything…but again, I surrender to the fact that they are not always going to look great all the time. I guess it’s becoming less and less important to me as the years go on because my oldest son, Dalton already doesn’t live with us, and Canyon, my second son, is getting ready to leave for 2 years for a mission to Chile. As I think about the time when all the boys will be gone and it will be just Brandon and I, the clutter and tidiness of certain areas of our home that are more lived in than others becomes less and less important to me!
Having said that, there are some areas that I do love to be organized and my closet is one of them! I recently produced a podcast where I interviewed Brian from The Closet Butler – click here to watch that episode. One of the things that really stood out to me while I was talking to him was that not all closets are created equal. I have A LOT of shoes, and most closets I have seen only have very limited space to store your shoes, and they don’t really allow you to put them on display.
At The Closet Butler they customize and manufacture every closet from scratch – music to my ears. I love the idea of creating my own space that fits MY NEEDS…You can check out some of the recent closets they have created by clicking here.
Because my closet is all mine, I get to control how it looks, how organized it is, and essentially turn it into a space that I enjoy being in. For me, my clothes, shoes and accessories are kind of like art – I love to look at them, imagine and create new styles and looks by mixing and matching things I have, and of course, finding new styles that I can add to my wardrobe.
As I explained in the podcast, when you have closet that is organized and displayed the way you want it, putting together outfits becomes so much easier and can even become more daring and creative. Essentially declutter your closet, declutter your mind and find the space that opens up so you can effectively express your unique style!
Do you take the time to do the things you love? Do you spend time with family, or are you stuck in your daily grind?
When my boys were younger I pretty much just breathed a huge sigh of relief when I had made it through a week – which I know now is exactly how NOT to go through life. A lot of those times were a blur as I put my head down and just fought day in and day out to keep my head above water…but that’s not really living is it?
So, how did I change that? I know some people may think that I spend way too much time on vacation, traveling and not working, but here’s my thought on that…there’s no such thing as doing too much traveling & spending time with family! When I travel, I am revitalized. When I spend time with my family (even though it’s not always rosy), I get more energy. When I take just a few moments a day just for me, I am so much better for my family…
I know not everyone has the same interests, has the same things that get them excited, which is why finding what YOU love and spending time doing that is vital. I look at it like it is my way to give me energy for the things I need to do. I remember Brandon telling the kids (and possibly he said it for my benefit too) that if you do the things you have to do, you can then do the things you want to do. Make sense? We all have responsibilities, things that must be done – bills to be paid so we have to work, the house needs to be cleaned, we need to eat and therefore need to cook…but once those things are done, that’s when the fun starts because we have left room for it – and leaving room is the key!
That’s why I love to travel and explore with my family. It’s what I want to do…it’s the thing that recharges my battery. It’s what keeps me going so I can make it through the things I have to do!
Our recent family river rafting trip was even better this year because all my boys came – it gets harder and harder to get us all together now they are getting older and I can’t FORCE them to come with us on vacation (I didn’t think I would ever have to force someone to take a free vacation with people they love to amazing places, but I guess sometimes you do!)
What is something that you LOVE to do and are committed to making sure you do it so that you can be your best self for those around you?
Comment below – I would love to hear!
Currently as I am on our family’s annual river rafting trip, I started to stress myself out about how I was going to be able to be as active with my blog, on social media, and such…and then it came to me. While all of these things are really important, it’s also vital that I take time away from them. I’ll be honest, I’m not the best at following rules, and I definitely like to be told what to do (even when I tell myself what to do unless it makes total sense to me)…and here’s the thing, this finally made sense to me.
Not that I am going to unplug completely and be totally black, but the difference is, I am not going to stress about it. It is not going to be my first thought in the morning nor my last thought at night because I know that having strong connections with Brandon and the family and friends is also ESSENTIAL!
So, with all of that being said, I will still post pictures of our adventures, I will still show a little snippet of what we are doing, and I will write a travel log when I return, but I will not be doing so much along the way.
Our family has been doing this river rafting trip for 20 years, and it’s a tradition that Brandon had been doing since long before I ever knew him. There have been years that I have not gone along because I was either heavily pregnant or I had just had a baby recently…but I absolutely love this tradition of meeting other families on the river and having a blast running the white water.
This year has been even more fun because all my boys came and it is the last big vacation that we will get to do with Canyon before he leaves on his mission for two years at the end of July…
Our new boat – the purple one – took it’s maiden voyage today and it was so fun. We took it on a mellow stretch of the Payette river called “swirly canyon” and there were lots of cliff jumping and other antics involved. I can tell you, if you’ve never been river rafting before I highly recommend trying it at least once – even if you just take a guided tour and paddle down!
Our next river rafting adventure will be in a little under two weeks and we will be floating the Snake river near Star Valley Wyoming. Stay tuned for more fun times…
There are so many holidays here in the U.S. and for most of those holidays we find ourselves in stores that are promoting gifts and as my kids walk around stores, they ask for things that they see, they add things to their Christmas list and the focus is so much more on what they want to receive. So it hit me that we are teaching our younger generations more about receiving than we are about the act of giving…
I started to think about I can change that for my boys, starting with myself. Starting by paying attention and giving things that I need to myself. Are you anything like me in that you focus on taking care of everyone else, making sure everyone else’s needs are met, and then you finally think about what you might need? It’s easy to do, but it’s also the worst thing we can do for ourselves because we are not practicing giving to ourselves!
The older I get the more I realize that there are certain things I need to do for myself in order for me to be able to be there for anyone else. In effect, I am no good to anyone, if I am running on fumes myself.
Here are a few things that I do for myself to make sure that I am practicing giving to myself – and the best part, I get to decide what those things I need are and whether I actually do it.
So, as I start on this quest of giving to myself, and therefore having the energy to give to others, I know that this is where the lessons will be learned by my kids. It is after all, what we see other do that leaves the greatest impact on our lives. I know that if I want my kids to appreciate the act of giving to others and themselves, that I have to make sure that I am showing them how it is done.
A little food for thought to start off this Monday…
Fashion Blog by Style Queenie for all of your Personal Style and Fashion Inspiration. Style Queenie is one of the top fashion blogs for women that can help you with street fashion and business fashion. Style Queenie is one of the top fashion blogs to follow!
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from StyleQueenie