What’s Saving My Life This Winter
Over on Modern Mrs. Darcy, a blog I enjoy reading, Anne Bogel shared nine things that are saving her life right now. She says she got the idea from reading Barbara Brown Taylor’s memoir Leaving Church: “Even though most of us can easily articulate what’s killing us, few of us pay attention to what’s giving us life.”
This inspired me to think about what is saving my life right now.
1. Reading Books Again
Over the past few years, I stopped reading books for pleasure. I’d read a few books here and there, but I mostly read magazines and the Internet. I can’t articulate why, but this year I have decided to read more books. I’m keeping track of the books I read on my personal instagram and on the sidebar of this blog. It’s motivating to see I’ve read 3 so far this year, which is about one every two weeks. That’s better than one every two months!
2. YouTube and Podcasts
I started listening to YouTube videos and podcasts on my 30 minute drive to work every morning. Beginning and ending the work day with inspirational and thought-provoking ideas keeps me mentally sharp. Some of my faves to listen to include Oprah, Marie Forleo, Tony Robbins, Simon Sinek, Seth Godin, and Brene Brown.
Blogging has given me a creative project to work on. I am learning an abundance of new technical and artistic skills and I get to practice writing. On top of all that, it’s fun!
4. My Daughter Waking Me Up Every Morning
If she didn’t wake me up, I would sleep all day. And while I do need more sleep, I think I need life even more.
5. Turning Off Wifi and Internet Access
My husband and I have configured our cell phones and wifi to turn off at 9 p.m. on weeknights and 10 p.m. on weekdays. For two people who love to learn new things, the Internet is one giant rabbit hole. We were regularly staying up way too late, staring at screens into the early morning hours. It made getting up in the morning to tend to our daughter incredibly difficult. We were also missing out on quality time to spend with one another. I’m not saying this strategy has transformed us into early birds, but we look less like zombies in the morning than we did before.
6. My Husband
He’s been pretty great at helping me out when I need it: Responding to texts when the splash guard on my car began dragging on the ground while I was driving on the highway; crawling under the car and removing said splash guard; watching my daughter when I go to my writing group; encouraging me to write; and showing me how to do technical stuff on the blog when I can’t figure it out. I know I could probably figure all this stuff out on my own, but it’s so nice to have someone to support you and talk you through your problems.
7. Getting Outdoors
The last few weekends, we’ve gotten outside for a hike and a walk. The fresh air, although bitterly cold, is a good reprieve from being cooped up all the time. Seeing the beauty in our own backyard, even in the dark wintertime, is good for the soul.
8. Sunny Days
We’ve had a run of sunny days last week and they were marvelous. I even got to wear sunglasses! A few days of sunshine helps break up the misery of the grey winter weeks.