Monday, February 09, 2015

What's Saving My Life Right Now

Modern Mrs. Darcy says this idea comes from Barbara Brown Taylor's memoir Leaving Church, that "most of us can easily articulate what’s killing us, but few of us pay attention to what’s giving us life."

A lot of this is in common with what I'm learning right now, or learned last year. I didn't make it into the what we learned in January linkup this month though (ah, to write faster!), so it shouldn't be too terribly redundant for you.

Okay, I didn't quite make it for this linkup either, but whatever.

1. Big goals.

I'd heard before that you shouldn't have too many goals going at once, but I'd always resisted reducing mine. Winnowing and those sorts of decisions are hard for INFPs. I remember reading from Michael Hyatt that your brain can only keep so many goals in mind at once, and I was like, "That's what writing them down is for!" But. He was right. Goals are about change, and there's only so much energy and focus and willpower to go around. Better to make the decisions on the front end.

What's really saving my life here is the idea that you're actually more likely to meet a big goal than a small one. It's more exciting. And that they don't all have to have end-of-year deadlines -- better to spread them out, actually -- and if you meet a goal early, hey! You can add another one!

So finally, I have a few (Well, 10. Hey, he says 7-10.) big exciting goals, and I'm liking it.

2. Reading challenges and virtual book clubs.

Modern Mrs. Darcy's 2015 Reading Challenge, which I'm also doing as a challenge at HabitRPG. (The "Modest Reading Challenge.") I love that, modest as it is, I can participate and have fun with it, but still read stuff off my regular reading list. And some extras in each category, too. And then why not, picking away at this Ultimate Reading Challenge, and doing that in HabitRPG. Not sure how much I'll do, or whether I'll eventually allow myself to count single books toward multiple categories, we'll see how it goes.

Then there's my sister's vitual book club, and reading a book with my husband! Yay!

3. The Artist's Way

(Note to self and others: Pause or turn off AdBlock on this page, so book cover images actually show up. Otherwise this post looks funny.)

I started this for the first category in the modest reading challenge, a book you've been meaning to read. But it's designed to be worked through over the course of twelve weeks, not four. So... well, I'll still check off the box for the ultimate reading challenge, and count it as an extra book for the modest one, but whatever. It's wonderful. I'm writing every morning (at 750 Words, yay!) and I love it. Highly recommended. I'll have to say a lot more about it in future posts.

4. A Million Little Ways and The Gifts of Imperfection

I started reading A Million Little Ways last December, I think, but it's saving my life right now by giving me a thoroughly Christian lens for reading The Artist's Way, making the whole experience that much richer. So wonderful. And then both it and The Gifts of Imperfection say so many things so similar to The Artist's Way -- but not in an annoying redundant way, in a synchronous, "wow, I guess I should really pay attention to this" way.

Also, a new year? It's a really good time to start these. (Want to read them? The year's still relatively new! Jump on in!)

5. This amazing deal on a membership to several Portland attractions at once.

Sort of all at once. One a month. We've only gone to one so far, the Portland Japanese Garden on January 31st, and it wasn't a perfect trip, but it was good. I'm looking forward to more fun excursions, and getting to know this area!

Looking out on Portland and Mt. Hood from the Garden.

6. Morning weekend runs on my own, and occasional weekday runs with jogging stroller.

So refreshing and good. The other day I went over to Tualatin Hills Nature Park for the first time, and that place is great. Very well maintained trails, very quiet and feels like it's in the middle of nowhere, even though it's just a short drive from our house. Forest. Mmm.

7. Cherry trees in our yard.

Aaah, I don't have a picture of them yet. Will be modifying this post tomorrow...

8. Easy dinners.

Ones like homemade French bread pizza. I mean, kind of homemade. I don't do all the nice toppings from the link. That's... just for the oven temperatures. Storebought French bread and spaghetti sauce. And pepperoni and cheese, of course. Anyway. Also other easy dinners, like getting a whole roast chicken and instant sides from the grocery store.

9. NAPS.

I say this (or draft this part, rather) as my daughter caterwauls "Mama" to the skies. I don't know how else to describe it.


Anne Bogel said...

This is a great list! Your running route looks lovely.

Marcy said...

Thanks! I'm really happy about finding that Nature Park. I've only been there once so far, but that will definitely be changing.