Many people need a motivational boost to start their week off on a Monday because they’re still tired from the weekend, they have to wake up earlier, or just the thought of everything they have to do that week is totally overwhelming. Well, I’m here to tell that some of us also need some supercharged motivation on a Friday.
I’m not saying we need motivation to get pumped up about Friday because we all love Fridays! (Woo-hoo! The weekend!) The motivation I’m talking about is for those of us who are mentally checking out early. I’m sure there are countless times you’ve said the following statements on a Friday. I just can’t wait to get out of the office! or I’m so glad it’s the weekend. Come on 5 o’clock! (I can’t even tell you the amount of times I begged the clock to work faster on a Friday!)
But that’s the type of attitude I’m trying to make us aware of. I’m not saying to not be excited, but instead to focus on today with the same intensity you give to a Monday. Make an effort to be extra present today instead of solely focusing on the weekend.
The accomplishments I’ve had in my life can be attributed to consistency. I haven’t won a Nobel Prize. I’m not a doctor. I haven’t innovated the latest and greatest new technology. And some days I don’t even match, but damn it I am consistent.
I believe this is the only reason why I am still here writing today. There isn’t always an overflow of insightful information coming from my mind (or sometimes even information that makes sense), but I show up every day to write consistently. This is how I eventually got better at volleyball as a teen. This is the way I graduated college. This is how I stumbled upon writing my first book. This is the way I raise my kids every day. I showed up. I show up.
So if there is someone out there who is struggling with life being “sucky” lately, don’t give up hope. Just show up. Show up every day and do one more good thing today than you did yesterday. Maybe that’s making a better food choice to a healthier option. Maybe that’s applying for a yet another job that’ll get you out of the dead end one you’re in now. Maybe that’s simply not taking a drink today. Whatever the case may be, just show up today. Be intentional with your life today.
When I think about all of the worries or fears or doubts I have, almost every single one of them is in the future. It’s not even something right here in front of me. Worried about how my kids will turn out; worried if I’ll ever be able to earn more money to contribute to the family income; worried that none of us will make friends in our new little community. Worry. Worry. Worry. I understand that some/most of those are ridiculous things to worry about, but they do pop into my head…a lot actually!
But what happens if I focus on today? What if, instead of worrying about things that are completely out of my control, I solely focused on today? I mean this is after all the culmination of life, right? Focusing on today and not tomorrow’s worries. (Easier said than done on most days.)
Not today, though. I will focus on today as today is my only guarantee. I’m not guaranteed tomorrow or next month or even next year, but I am here today. I’m not trying to sound like a Debbie Downer here, but I just woke up this morning and realized I was bumming myself out worrying about freaking everything around me and that wasn’t helping one little bit! So it’s time to try something new!
I hope you are encouraged to focus on today. I hope we can encourage each other to stop worrying so damn much and enjoy the people and the relationships right here in front of us.
One of my favorite radio shows does a segment called “First World Problems.” I love listening to the hilarious and absurd things we complain about or even get very upset about when it comes to life in a developed, financially well-off country. It puts things into perspective when you hear these complaints from other people. It reminds me that most of my complaints are just as ridiculous as theirs.
For example, my husband and I are now being told we will have to move once again after we just moved our family. Is anyone going to die in this situation? No. Will anyone be left behind or be homeless? No. Does this mean we will have to sacrifice our standard of living in order to accommodate the move? No, I really don’t think so.
You see, problems always seem so much bigger in our heads. It’s when we get them out there for other people to hear them that we hear from our own voice just how absurd our “problems” really are.
I know we’ll be fine. I know our family and our kids are resilient and that we are “home” as long as we are together making an effort to make it a home. I know there are people all across this country making tougher decisions today or having to move further away than 3 hours South. I know there are military families that are shipping loved ones over seas and across oceans to do the jobs they love to do.
My perspective has changed. Thank you God for giving me perspective and for allowing my ridiculous worries, fears, doubts, and anxieties be silenced so people will real issues can be heard.
Recently, we moved our family 3 hours away from where our children had gone to school for the past 3 years. We were established in our community. We knew people when we went to the grocery store. We had friends to talk to at little league games. We knew our neighborhood pretty well. And I was on a first name basis with the principals and teachers at each of my boys’ schools.
Then we moved. We moved to be closer to family. We knew this was going to be challenging, but being closer to family in a good school district was a move we were willing to make.
Then it happened…
This past Friday we were thrown an unexpected curve-ball. While we are still in the middle of unpacking boxes and sorting through all of our recently moved home, we were told my husband’s company would once again be relocating us, along with the rest of their company headquarters, to another location 3 hours south from where we just moved.
“Really? Why couldn’t they have just kept us where we were and moved us from there? Why are we having to move twice? Do we want to move? What other options do we have?” These were just a few of the questions my husband and I tossed back and forth on Friday as we were in disbelief this was actually happening.
But, like anything else, we will get through it. I’m not 100% sure how easy the new transition will be, but I do know that as long as we are sober and we stick together we can accomplish anything.
God, grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The Courage to change the things I can,
And the Wisdom to know the difference.
I’ll be perfectly honest here, I wrote the title to this post almost 2 weeks ago. It hit me when I was in the middle of a self-shaming pity party. I was upset that I was off schedule and wasn’t able to keep up with my blog, here and elsewhere, while we were in the middle of moving. To be honest, I felt like a failure.
“I couldn’t even be prepared enough to write ahead and post something scheduled while we were moving. I’m in over my head. This just isn’t for me. Maybe I should just quit blogging altogether.” That shame monster is one powerful SOB! Are you kidding me? I was going to quit because I couldn’t post anything for a week!
Now I feel like I need to give myself a little tough love pep talk. “You were going to quit? We didn’t come this far just for you to abandon this good thing we’ve got going! If you quit, shame wins. Fear wins. Are you going to keep giving in to fear when things get tough?” Once again, a drama played out between myself and my ego. (It’s enough to make your head spin sometimes.)
The point of it all is to say that this inner turmoil helped me realize that grace wins every time. When I wasn’t able to post while we were moving, I gave myself grace to get settled into our new home and then I would continue on this journey. I knew that we wouldn’t be living out of moving boxes and suitcases forever, so I didn’t allow myself to quit. I offered myself grace instead. And now I feel like I have been given a new kind of motivation – a grace inspired motivation.
I didn’t quit – you can’t get rid of me that easy. Please give yourself some grace today if you’re struggling to meet yours or someone else’s expectations. We’re all human.
It’s hard to get into a groove and start new habits. It’s even harder to do those things when you aren’t totally motivated to be the best version of yourself everyday. Sure, it’s sounds good in theory to have this abundance of endless motivation all of the time every day, but that’s not reality.
In reality, we have to be motivated again and again and again every single day. I remember reading about Zig Ziglar saying something along the lines of “motivation is like showering; it is required daily. ”
So today, take a second to get situated mentally, prepare yourself physically (deep breaths may be required), and really decide that you are going to be motivated to accomplish your goals today. Maybe it’s a tiny goal. Maybe it’s a HUGE goal. Maybe it’s only a portion of what you need to do to succeed, but please find your motivation today.