It’s my birthday! In celebration, here are 40 things I know to be true. And because it’s just boring without pictures, a few of my happy places. If you make it all the way to the end, I have a little gift for you. Because what is a birthday without presents?
- Don’t leave sharpie markers on the counter with toddlers in the house.
- Family is everything.
- You cannot have it all. Which part of “all” matters?
- Sleep! 7 hours is my absolute minimum do, 8 is better.
- Never do complicated when simple will work.
- Less is more.
- No is a complete sentence.
- Risk management is not just for bankers (and that’s probably the most important thing I learned in banking.)
- Other banking lessons? Character trumps all – it is more important than a financial position, history, future plans.
Gratitude is the antidote for the blues, materialism, entitlement, all that ails you.
- If you don’t know where you are going, you will not know that you’ve arrived.
- There is beauty and worth in every single person, no matter how annoying. My job is to find it.
- Read. Read. Read.
- Sometimes we don’t deserve the good things we get. Sometimes we don’t deserve the bad things we get.
- Grace is enough
- Tomorrow I’ll wish I started today.
- One mess-up does not ruin the rest of the day/week/month/project.
- Done is better than perfect.
- Make your bed every day. (Thanks Mom.)
- You always have a choice.
- Travel is mind-expanding. What people everywhere have in common is so much greater than our differences.
- You can only change yourself.
- Two ears, one mouth. To be used in that proportion.
- Garbage in, garbage out.
- Nothing lasts forever. That gets me through the tough times, and reminds me to be here now.
- Saying “yes” to one thing always means saying “no” to something else.
- What other people think is true for them. It doesn’t have to be true for me.
- Imagination is the way to solve problems.
- Create something everyday. A doodle, a dinner, a clear sentence. Anything.
- A small decision to do the next right thing can determine your whole direction.
- Being a mom is the toughest (and most important) thing I’ve ever done.
- Encourage your children.
- Optimism is indispensable.
- Your children want you. (Thanks April Perry!)
- Those long quiet nights up with a nursing baby? You’ll miss it.
- Plan for the unexpected (especially with little guys around!).
- Marriage? Forgive, forgive, forgive. And try to forget.
- A smile and a kiss go a long way, as does saying you’re sorry.
- I don’t know who said this but I believe it wholeheartedly: “you can be right or you can be happy.” Your choice.
All you need is love.
And because every birthday needs presents (who doesn’t like presents?) I want to give you one.
Are you feeling overwhelmed? Don’t know what is vital to you anymore?
Jump on the phone with me for 30 minutes and I’ll walk you through my step-by-step way to clear your head, find what’s next, and focus on making your highest contribution. I have set aside some spots on my calendar – click here to book your appointment now. (And yes, since it’s my gift to you, it’s free.)
Don’t you love starting your day on a quiet note? I love a little peace before my little people wake up. My whole family’s day is better if I’m feeling relaxed and accomplished. While my kids are now 5 and 3, and it is easier to out-rooster my little roosters, I still need a plan to make the most of my quiet moments.
Below, I share my rituals. While these seem really involved (and long!) it didn’t start that way. I initially read my devotional (sometimes in bed) and then added morning pages. Later I added a meditation, and most recently a small bit of exercise. Every action builds on the last, and I don’t have to think about it anymore. It is also great to know that even if nothing else got done today, I already nurtured myself – body, mind and soul.
:: The night before:
- Put my journal and favorite pen on the kitchen table.
- I put my phone on the charger across the room from the bed. (When my alarm goes off, I have to run for it before it wakes the kids.)
- I put my exercise clothes, including my shoes, fitbit, and a hairband in the bathroom.
:: 5 am.
My alarm goes off. I go to the bathroom, change into exercise clothes, and drink water. I grab my phone and head for the living room in the dark. There, I read a devotional. If you aren’t Christian, I still suggest you find something that inspires you to read for just 5 minutes. I meditate for 10 minutes (some days I meditate on how awful I am at meditation.) After that, I do a quick 7-minute exercise circuit.
:: 5:30 am.
I sit down at the kitchen table with my journal and write morning pages. (Inspired by Julia Cameron’s The Artist Way) If I’m working through a journaling course or book, I write the prompt in my journal the night before.
:: 6:00 am
I start the kettle for my French press or tea, and go wake up my kindergartener. We have a few sleepy snuggles in the kitchen, and I hand him his school uniform and a bowl of cheerios. While he gets dressed I start to get breakfast ready for my husband (two eggs and gluten-free toast) and have my first cup of tea or coffee. If needed, I remind my son to look at his chart, and that reminds him to go brush his teeth and grab his backpack.
:: 6:30 am.
We head outside to wait for the school bus. (I know – it is ridiculously early for the poor guy but that’s the reality of Lima traffic.)
I have breakfast with my husband, and he leaves for work (ahh Lima traffic.)
If my three year old didn’t come to the kitchen yet, I go wake him up. I help him to get dressed in his preschool uniform, and then he has breakfast while I have my second cup. We do a little drawing or reading, and he does his morning chart. (Feed the dog, brush teeth, get backpack.) I clean the kitchen, and sneak a peek at my email or social media if there’s time.
Walk to preschool. It is a 10 minutes stroller walk, or 30 minutes if he wants to walk himself. (Oh look, dandelion!). I walk or run home the long way while listening to an audio book or podcast. (If the day is crazy or everything goes pear shaped, this is what I cut)
I take a quick shower and dress for the day. My routine takes 10-15 minutes, including some minimal makeup and loads of sunscreen.
I start Spanish classes or work.
Want to build your own sacred time?
- Start with the time you have to leave your house (or start work) and work backwards to determine what time your alarm should go off.
- Add extra time, because you know it doesn’t always go to plan. (Especially with kids!)
- If you hit roadblocks, see what you can do to make a frictionless. Putting out your exercise clothes at night (A friend sleeps in her running clothes!)
- Most importantly: Keep it small. Start with little goals. If you get up at 7, maybe you can get up at 6:30 and read or journal for 10 minutes.
Here’s to peaceful mornings, and that first cup of coffee.
Do you have a morning ritual? Come join us on the Facebook group to talk about it.