January 3, 2011

Baby Steps

I didn't make any New Year resolutions, but I'm excited and optimistic about 2011.  Positive change is something I work on every single day.  It's slow going and sometimes the direction isn't clear, but I follow my heart and try to learn as much as I can along the way.

It seems like I'm taking baby steps on this journey to improve and find purpose. I do know with each decade comes a stronger sense of self and confidence. I've stepped outside of my comfort zone in the last handful of years, trying some things that are not the norm in my circle of friends.  I never imagined myself:

  • writing this blog
  • driving five hours alone to attend a health retreat I happened across online (and returning two more times)
  • running a 5K race at age 47
  • drinking green smoothies and making milk from almonds
  • knitting a sweater 
  • having a strong desire to live a life of simplicity 

I find true happiness at home, and I've learned that making time for creativity is essential to my well being.  I'm recognizing how precious time is and beginning to weed out the things in life that are unfulfilling or obligatory.  I'm learning to be at peace with my perceived physical imperfections and intend to work hard on accepting the new ones that come along with age.  I'm much happier when I focus on strengths instead of weaknesses, and I have much less tolerance for mean-spirited criticism.  I'm more apt to give my opinion now and I'll even voice my desires from time to time.  There's a lot of work going on here, and so much more to do.  Baby steps.  Baby steps.

I learned of Sarah Ban Breathnach's book Simple Abundance:: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy last year while on a weekend Women's retreat.  It's written in essay format :: one entry each day of the calendar year.  It's thought provoking and full of lessons and guidance toward authenticity and fulfillment.  The focus is on six principles :: gratitude, simplicity, order, harmony, beauty and joy.  This book is especially fun to gift to a friend and then follow along together.  I've moved my bookmark back to the beginning and will be reading an essay-a-day again this year.  Care to join me?