[via inspirational quotes]
I found this graphic at the beginning of the new year, and at first, it didn’t mean much to me. But as time passed, this image kept popping into my thoughts. The more I thought about it, the more I felt inspired by it. I was trying to think of what each of these mean to me. I began to read it as steps; a process I could divide the year in sections with, and focus on each part. The end is a result of the beginning.
Step 1: Simplify
I mainly think of this one, because it is where I am in life right now. Things are hectic, crazy. Great, but busy. I think of simplifying as a cleansing pallet. Start the year fresh by cleaning, organizing, and simplifying. I currently find myself needing to simplify some of those “adult” responsibilities — mostly bills. It feels like every time I open the mailbox, all I get is bills flying in my face (Harry Potter Hogwart’s letter status). It does nothing but stress me out, but Connor and I figured out a way to get bills less. That’s right. It’s called paying it in full. We did this when living in Pullman with our car and renters’ insurance. It was so nice not to get that bill for a whole 6 months to a year. We plan to do that again, plus adding a few additional bills we have accumulated with this owning-a-house thing. Simplify bills.
After work, I come home and always feel like there are so many things I need to do. Over the last week, there is only one thing that has saved me. This image that reminds me to focus. Focus on the task at hand rather than getting overwhelmed with a whole list of things. Taking baby steps. Despite only having a few hours each night after I get home from work, I feel like I have accomplished a lot. Mainly because I have been focusing on one task a day, whether it is big or small, I try my best to complete it, or at least get close. There have been things on my many to-do lists that have been waiting to get completed for weeks. They are finally getting done. Slowly but surely. Steady wins the race.
I have put off a few projects in the meantime, because I feel like that will come later with steps 2-5 (be inspired, be original, work hard). I can’t seem to focus much when these basic housekeeping items are cluttering my mind. My goal of simplifying really boils down to the end result of having a clear mind and more time to do what matters. Simplifying is a complicated process in itself, but I think the outcome will be beneficial.
Because I am not quite at the point to continue onto the next steps, I don’t want to say too much, since I have yet to experience them. But here are a few ideas:
Step 2 (Be Inspired): An outcome I foresee from simplifying. A clear mind filled with good things. Inspiration, ideas, thoughts, feelings, creativity. A powerful feeling it is to be inspired. A feeling like moving mountains, or the possibilities being endless. Motivated and excited to begin. Hopeful for something to come. Accomplished by doing. Paint, draw, sing, write, dance, hike, experience.
Step 3-4 (Be Original, Work Hard): Why do I only sometime run full-speed ahead with my inspiration? Why is it that some things get left behind and lost? The inspiration disappears. This is an important step for me–to hold on to that inspiration. Work hard on things as they happen, not putting them off for a later day. Because I might not ever get around to it, and if I do, I might not feel the same inspiration as I did before. Work in the moment, the present day, not thoughts for tomorrow. As important as it is to be inspired and moved by others, it is equally important to be original. Take those ideas and build, develop, evolve, and change them. Grow your inspiration. Be inspired by yourself, your surroundings, your dreams. Immerse yourself.
Step 5 (Enjoy): Reward yourself for working hard. Reward yourself while working hard. Have a lazy day. Have a lazy week. Watch movies. Cuddle. Go out with friends. Go out with yourself. Take in your accomplishments and appreciate your life and your blessings. Life is great. Don’t forget that.
Take the challenge with me?