I don’t consider myself a type A personality, however I have tendencies to believe if I keep going at something I will get whatever it is I am after. It’s a fleeting and temporary strong drive. Which is really quite contrary to my reality. On one hand I get super focused and all I can do is related to what I am thinking about at the time. I tell myself, “don’t quit.” keep trying, sometime will work out. And then on the other hand, all the previously POMs (projects of the moment) take back seat and don’t get accomplished and some even fall off the radar screen entirely.
Yesterday was different. It was my “free’ day to accomplish so many things, but I got side tracked by the house hunt. That is a lot of work. I am not a realtor, but I have access to all the tools on-line, and I actually do the work my Realtor should be doing. Including the mapping, driving and researching all these homes. It was another full day of disappointments.
One of the houses I considered had a price increase of 15k by the time I returned from looking at it. ( second house I have looked at with a price increase) Eff that. It’s such bull sh*t, the entire real estate process is bull sh*t. (sorry for my language)
When I got back from our second round of looking, I hopped right back on the computer to search some more. I was obsessed. And it didn’t make me happy. I started thinking this isn’t working. Some pretty little glitter fairly was
tapping hitting me on the head, sending a message – “stop.”
Stop. It’s a word I rarely use, unless I am talking to my animals, and even then I don’t say it enough. We all know that “quitters never win, and winner never quit.” Ugh. Talk about ideas engrained in the brain.
But I am going to stop. I am. I blew my free day, and now I have more to do on my work days. My commitment to finding a home was causing stress. It was beginning to make me sad and slowly fueling resentment. This is why I chose to stop.
I am falling back on the comics power(s), and letting it,( them?) bring the right house to me. This is somewhat of a foreign concept to me, except in regards to parking spaces, but it’s what I have to do. I’m letting go, surrendering and stopping.
I am proud of my new found ability to recognize what I was doing to myself mentally prior to an actual meltdown. This is great progress.
How will you recognize when it’s time to stop? I don’t have a answer for everyone. I barely have one for myself. The only thing I know for sure is; if you feel yourself becoming anxious, worried, and hopeless – STOP whatever you are doing. Just stop.
The earth will keep turning, the sun will continue to rise and set as it should and you will still breathe. Cheers!
Tip: Dreams and goals have to be in balance with your life in total.
Inspiration: ” I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.” ~Douglas Adams
One-day one-thing: Sort winter clothing including outer wear, gloves, hats and mittens. Donate to shelters before the first snow. :)
I lost an entire post I wrote on my phone late last night. I was in bed, writing on my iPhone. I hate writing on that tiny thing. (Thus the reason for my enormous laptop.)
When I was awake and writing, nothing I wrote made sense. It all lacked purpose and focus. I was getting very frustrated. That’s when I asked my husband what should I write about? He answered, “Write about losing the house.”
I said,” No. I’ve already whined about that enough.”
He said, “Well you haven’t stopped around me.”
Sigh. He was right. I have been moaning and putting myself down because I knew in my gut that we should have bid higher, but instead I listened to someone else.
He surprised me when he said,” You need to figure out why you can’t let it go. Is there something subconsciously stopping you for moving forward? We can’t change the past. We’ll never get another house because in your eyes nothing will ever be as good as the “one that got away.” So maybe there something inside [you] that is causing you to close your mind. I’m not saying there is, but it’s worth a look.”
Well, how nice, I thought to myself. I took what he said to heart and really tried to figure it out. I couldn’t think of anything except that maybe I no longer trusted my instincts. But that wasn’t it. So I went to bed with my phone.
(don’t sleep with your phone if you want restful sleep )
I was half asleep when a light bulb in my head switch on. That’s it, I figured it out!
The house that got away, was perfect. It had a place for every one and a place for every thing. It felt like it was ours. I confessed I had already seen myself moving heavy sand stone and prepping the garden. I visualize all of us there this holiday season, with candles glowing while we lazed around in pjs. Cozy and comfortable. Even my old furniture would fit. It was going to be just like home. There in lies the issue, I loved this place so much because basically the only real change would have been our zip code. The familiarity and the easy comfort fiercely drew me in and wouldn’t let me go. It was as though this new house would cause losing our old home, and everything we went through, to seamlessly disappear.
Snap back to reality.
I remember when we lost our home, we decided that we would take this as an opportunity to re-scuplt and redesign our lives. I decided to have less stuff and focus more on living. My journey to living better with less began. I still want that and I am making progress but the final destination is under construction. What form it will eventually take on is completely unknown at this point. I recognized that this perfect house wasn’t anything new, it didn’t really fit anywhere within the changing our lives category.
Have you ever thought you wanted to change something but it never happens? Could it be because you are holding on to old beliefs and ideas? Are you limiting yourself by staying in a comfort zone? Do you have trouble letting go? Are you afraid of taking risks?
I can tell you this has really hit home for me on many levels. All the be the change you want to see and /or want to be can’t happen if we [I] continue to hold onto old ideas and beliefs. If “comfort” and “familiarity” take over there won’t be any room left for change, adventure, and risk. No matter what the issue; job, relationships, losing weight, quitting smoking or starting your own business. You can’t begin to change yourself until you let go of your old self.
You’ll know I’m crazy when I tell you I think we found “it.” Without even seeing this new place in person, I am thinking it is the one for us. Insane, I know. It’s risky and different. It’s exciting and unexpected. I guess I’m a *hopeless-optimists. (*that is when I’m not sad)
Maybe it’s the alignment of the stars, or the yoga, but I feel more grounded, more in touch with what change really means.
I ‘ll keep you posted. Cheers!
Tip: Have faith in yourself, if you fail, try a different way.
Inspiration: ” The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.”~ Bill Clinton
One-day one-thing: Eat a healthy salad for dinner. :)
I, like many other people find themselves always seeing a digital clock that says 11:11. It’s uncanny for me. It can happen when a clock isn’t even set to the proper time. Sh*t happens in my life and then I look at the clock and say, “Guess what time it is? 11:11 again.” This doesn’t happen to anyone else in my immediate family, just me.
Today is the grand day 11:11:11, and I was told to go buy 11 lottery tickets or something to that effect. I don’t know, the way my luck has gone recently I am not sure I even want to do that.
This is what I know for sure. My greatest luck steams from my greatest love, my Husband. When we got married, we didn’t know if we would ever be able to have children. I vividly remember stopping for a margarita, and tears welling up in my eyes telling my husband, “I’m never going to get pregnant.” I shouldn’t have been drinking because I was already pregnant. We had no idea that the next two would arrive on their own. Which was pretty much immediately after our first was born. They are called Irish triplets, three babies born in less that three years.
When I was twelve or thirteen I was in a huge car accident. Last thing I remember as the orange Chevy Nova with black stripes rolled over was the interior dome light, it was white with a flower pattern, I can still see it clearly. I have been in
five six car accidents total, three fender benders and three very major. When I was about twenty I completely totaled a car. The cop that drove me 15 miles to the hospital stayed in the waiting room. He asked if I was sure I was okay, and then asked me out. I was too stupid and self absorbed to even consider how incredibly caring and kind he was. I was young and naive, I thought everyone in the world was thoughtful, nice and kind. He said it was a miracle I was still alive. I had no clue until days later when I actually saw the car.
I’ve got a million of these stories. They all live in my past. Some aren’t so happy and some hurt a lot. I struggle with my past like everyone else, yet I also know how blessed I am. How do I balance this? I have hurts that I can recognize for what they are. I know that I can’t change them, but the hurt lingers deep down in at my core. I don’t dwell on these hurts anymore, thank God I am past that stage. But to be quite honest I thought that if I didn’t think about them, or dwell on them, they would vanish. That’s not how it works, folks.
They are part of me. All the scars, physical and emotional, all the lines in my face and everything else you can’t see is what make me; me. The same goes for you. You are a total of your thoughts and all your experiences, the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful up until this very point in time.
The cynical side of me says, I guess this just means; that which doesn’t kill you make you “not-dead.” The better side of me says, I am so fortunate and so grateful and everything that has happened brought me to who I am now.
Moving forward should be a cake walk. It seems obvious to me that we should concentrate on making every experience as positive as humanly possible. This would build more of the beautiful and good inside and less of the bad and ugly. Makes perfect sense. Right? Right.
BUT – I got hurt yesterday emotionally. Words were said that hurt me at my core. I let those words in. I couldn’t brush it off. Even when I was angry inside, I was aware. I told myself , this isn’t good for me let it go. I rattled off unkind words (f-bombs uncut) when driving alone in my car, and kept telling myself to stop. I felt out of control. I was so hurt, in tears, in shock and really angry.
Truth is I am not powerless and either are you. I handled the situation incorrectly. I should know by now, that this person will take any opportunity to hurt me rather than help me. I should be alerted by a warning signal when this person opens their mouth. ( Is there an app for that? )
What I should have done was laugh out loud and say something like, ” Now, you’re just talking crazy talk” or “You’ve got to be joking” and left it at that. Or better yet, I should have ignore it all together and walked away. I really should have walked away without speaking.
But I couldn’t leave it alone, I asked “What did you say?! what did you say?! I’d like you to say that to my children!” I slammed the door as I left. I was train wreck.
I hope this time is the last time I have to learn this same old lesson. Big heavy sigh.
Anyway that was yesterday. Today is Friday. The best Friday ever 11-11-11 and I am about to win 11 million dollars. Cheers!
Tip: When someone kicks you when you are down do not respond, just walk away.
Inspiration: “You are what you think … geez, that’s frightening.” ~ Lily Tomlin
One-day one-thing: Splurge. Do something for yourself.
I have fallen behind in my de-cluttering of useless stuff, the junk in the garage, etc…. and now I am about to write a novel. I still have no clue as to what I am going to write, but it starts November 1, 2011, which is tomorrow.
I will be busy with that, and won’t have much time for Unpack the Rat. I’m going to continue my journey to living better with less for sure. Unpack the Rat has been the best thing that ‘s happened to me in a long time! I’ve learned so much.
Clearing out the emotional clutter
was is so incredibly important to me. Well come to think about it, all the cluttered areas are equally important to me. They’re all connected and they influence each other. I never, in a million years, imagined that clearing out boxes and shoes would lead to clearing out everything else and re-inventing my life.
I have a long road ahead, more work to be done, but it’s not as overwhelming as it was before. I hope to have some great accomplishments, tips, and stories to write about when I return to Unpack the Rat. I am excited. Life is good, even when it’s not. :)
Thank you for reading. I’ll be back.
Until then I wish you peace and love,
PostScript: I really value Unpack the Rat as a place I can unload my feelings, so I may not be able to stay away. This whole “novel” writing adventure is getting a bit intimidating.
Tip: “Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.”~John Lennon
Every-day one thing: “Extend to each person, no matter how trivial the contact, all the care and kindness and understanding and love that you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.” – Og Mandino
Thanks to a dear friend, and a couple on-line friends, I am back on the mat. I started again
last two nights ago and hopefully I will never stop my practice of yoga. I am a beginner for the 5th time. Five different attempts to make yoga part of my life. One time I even paid for an entire session, and never went because I thought I was too busy or it wasn’t convenient. So I guess that actually makes it six attempts.
However, this time I feel differently about it. This time it’s not just something I should do. It’s not something I want do only because it will get me in better shape. I have no expectation for my yoga experience, I am going with the flow. I want to do yoga for the rest of my life, as in life-long commitment. I believe that shift in my thinking will make all the difference.
This makes me happy. Granted I am
little sore really sore, and I have only gone to one session, but I know it’s all possible. Being a beginner (I should be an expert at being a beginner) is a bit awkward only because it’s new and your body isn’t accustom to being used. You are not unlike a baby learning to walk, unsure and wobbly. But that’s normal.
I’m okay not knowing all the details of this journey and I am okay with being wobbly. I know with practice I will improve. I’m not sure what all the yoga words mean or all the symbols, it doesn’t matter.
Everything will come in time.
So with much gratitude I thank Kat, Claudia and James. Namaste.
I want to share these awesome posts from two fantastic blogs.
Tip: What is the meaning of Namaste?
Aadil Palkhivala’s reply: “The gesture Namaste represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra. The gesture is an acknowledgment of the soul in one by the soul in another. “Nama” means bow, “as” means I, and “te” means you. Therefore, Namaste literally means “bow me you” or “I bow to you.”
One-day one thing: Practice breathing.
It’s time. This time, not next time, right now and right where ever you are.
(Please know I am addressing myself as well.)
No more excuses. Change your mind and change your life. Decide today that you are worth taking care of. Believe that there is nothing more important that taking care of yourself. Other people do it. We look at them in awe. We question how do they do it? Sometimes we get jealous. Maybe we claim they don’t have troubles, or they are younger, healthier, or they are rich, or they don’t have to work so they have the time. Over and over again we convince ourselves that they can have it all, because of something they have that we don’t.
Each time we make any excuse as to why we are not living our best life we are bullshitting ourselves – every single time.
I have no room to talk. I am right there with everyone. I have attempted so many times to get my sh*t together that I have all the tips embossed into my gray matter. Those tips, and they are good ones, didn’t help me at all. You know why? Because I never followed through with what they said. I would read self help books up to about page 30. You wouldn’t believe how many of these books I donated in my de-cluttering. I had to remove all the pathetic book marks. I never stuck with anything long enough to get to the point where I knew I was living my best life.
More importantly MOST importantly, I never cleared out all the other toxic beliefs, grudges, and negatives in my heart and mind. You have to have an open mind, that’s true. I had an open mind. What I didn’t have was any extra room in my mind. You have to have a clean slate, or at least some free space in your head where new ideas can begin to live and grow.
It’s somewhat like a chalk board. Try this:
Fill a chalk board with every thing that you have issues with, and things that makes you angry, and people who have hurt your feelings. Write down the negative things you say to yourself. Right down every regret you have. Write down any and all shame you carry. Write down the reasons you don’t exercise or eat right. Write down names of people who screwed you, or lied to you. I think you get the point.
Now step back. Look at that mess. There’s no room for anything else. Your board is full. Full of sh*t.
It’s time to erase that nasty chalkboard. Everything you wrote down doesn’t matter. Erase it. It just doesn’t do you any good, in fact every day you keep it on your board (in your brain), you suffer.
This can be a long painful process, but at a certain point in time you will reach a tipping point where, letting go of the ugly past/present becomes easier. You may even wonder why you didn’t do all this sooner, don’t worry that’s normal. Here are four simple things you can do this weekend to start re-wiring your brain.
1. Don’t gossip: It can be a habit. Just stop it. It is negative energy that saps you of positive emotions. It’s not nice and it attracts people who are not nice.
2. Compliment yourself: Acknowledge something that you do or did well. Be proud of it. It can be anything, even something as simple as cleaning out a cat box. Just say to yourself, “That was nasty but I did a good job of cleaning it and now it’s done, the cats will be happy.”
3. Be grateful: Every day express gratitude, and recall that gratitude throughout the day. Key word “express.” Let someone ( even yourself) know you are grateful.
4. Stop complaining: Cold turkey on this one. If you can’t say something nice stay silent.
This is only a start. I don’t know if this will work for anyone else, but I have used these four things and they have helped me.
I am working on changing my mental wiring, my life. I am starting to actually see a difference. It feels good. My old issues, they are still there, but they have
no power less influence over my thoughts and my decisions. Letting go doesn’t make things disappear, it just means you are no longer holding on to them.
Be conscientious of these four simple things for the entire weekend, what do you have to lose? Happy Friday. Cheers- I love Fridays!
And if you really want to enjoy your weekend try Sunday, simply.
Tip: Don’t be hard on yourself, stop talking yourself down.
- This is my goal in life.
One-day one-thing: Set one realistic goal to accomplish this weekend and do it.
It’s October, and the pressure is already mounting. We all know what’s around the corner. The holidays. The days we smile and laugh and share good times with those we love or those we are related to. Some people are lucky and everyone they know fits into the “I can’t wait to see you this Thanksgiving” category.
Me, not so much. So without going into the gory details, my task here is to learn how to simplify these awkward family celebrations. I am tired of stressful holidays. They must end and end this year. This is a huge challenge and it weighs heavily on me. I could say I hate it but I don’t want to be a hater.
(I’ll save the financial stresses of holidays for another post.)
I have gathered a list of what I am going to do to handle this holiday season. I hope it works. And maybe this list will help someone else out there in a similar situation.
(Warning:This list is for those who have issues, if you don’t have these issues ignore #1,#2 & #3.)
1.) Give up hope: Give up the hope that our families will act perfectly, or even remotely close to reasonably well. We know what to expect, and we need to acknowledge it isn’t going to be perfect or even close. Eliminate all your expectations.
2.) Give up control: If you have been deeply wounded by your family stop trying to control them. You will never control someone’s actions or words. Accept full responsibility for your healing. Only you can control your thoughts.
3.) Go late, leave early: If you must go into an uncomfortable situation arrive late, have an early exit plan, and leave early.
4.) Say “no.” Having extra responsibilities during the holidays is normal, but don’t let yourself be the go-to person for everything that no one else wants to do. Be prepared to say, “no.”
5.) Be rested and well fed: This is key. So many times we become so busy we don’t even realize that we haven’t eaten or that we are getting too little sleep. This makes you emotional and weak which in turn leads to intense sadness and poor decisions.
6.) Be selfish: Schedule some interrupted time every day to do something just for yourself, this is also critical to improve your mood and it makes you stronger in handling uncomfortable situations.
7.) Go for a walk: No matter what – go for a walk. It doesn’t have to be a long walk, but get up and get out of the house. Clear your head and get a break from all the pressure at home or at a gathering.
8.) Above all practice gratitude: This will help you during the holidays and every day of the year!
I would love to hear your suggestions and or tricks…..add them in the comment section. Cheers – I am enjoying this season this year no matter what!!!
Tip: Don’t drink too much. I speak form experience it’s not good thing, even though it felt good at the time.
Inspiration: “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has. ” ~Epictetus
One-day one-thing: Sort your holiday stuff, throw away anything broken, donate items you will no longer use. Do not hoard anything for someone else or for another season.
I am forcing myself to get back on track and I am mentally trying to re-charge my journey to living better with less.
What I didn’t expect were the results of continually being in the sorting mode. While in that mindset, you have time to repeatedly concentrate on what’s important. What is a keeper and what isn’t. It goes for all parts of your life. It even effects how you chose to spend your time. It effects how you view people in your life and of course at the material level, what stuff stays with you.
I don’t care much about the material stuff. I really don’t even want to sort it any longer. I’d rather make a list and pick out the very basics I want to keep and chuck the rest. It would be so easy to start with an empty house and hand pick exactly what I need from my stored inventory. We are so far away from that fantasy.
It’s a lot of work to sort the contents of three story house with an attic, a basement and a two car garage. Especially since I spent the better part of twelve years filling it with “stuff.”
I am guessing I am in the middle of my journey. I still struggle with decisions and with changing habits. I struggle with my new ideas clashing with society and expectations. I struggle with sorting people.
The key here, for those reading. Stop buying stuff you don’t need. The tried and true method of want vs. need is the golden rule of consumerism. Don’t buy into the theory propagated by the mass marketing campaigns. None of it is true. The only thing that matters to corporations is money. Personally, I don’t buy much at all anymore. How could I? I don’t even know what I have. I opened this box (shown below) the other day to my surprise – viola! I didn’t even know this existed.
Also remember do not own other people’s issues. It is nice to be concerned, but you can’t take their issues on as your own. Do your best but keep yourself uncluttered from other people’s drama. If you don’t, it will eat you alive. I believe experts refer to this as reasonable boundaries.
I starting think about minimalism, and now I’m in to psycho babble. So be it. I’m not certain where this will lead, but a refuse to stop now.
Tip: Make a wish list of one of more items that you really want but can’t afford. Look at this list to curb your impulse spending.
Inspiration: “If one dream should fall and break into a thousand pieces, never be afraid to pick one of those pieces up and begin again. ” ~Flavia Weedn
One-day one-thing: List name brand jeans that no longer fit on Ebay.
Time to sort my situations. Laugh out loud at myself. I am tired of sorting. I’m tired of stuff.
Anyway, there is a “situation” that I do not like. Details aren’t important. The facts are – I can’t change the situation. It’s a downer, not the end of the world, but not good nonetheless. The only relief I can get is two-fold: first and foremost I can concentrate on being grateful, and the second part is that I have to believe that things aren’t working out how I would like right now, because something better is meant to be.
This is nothing short of a leap of faith. Faith in what you ask? I don’t have a clue. I follow my own path of spirituality, and it doesn’t have a name. It doesn’t have any symbols or holy days, it’s just my own faith. It’s not based on anything in particular, except perhaps the unknown.
It has taken me a lifetime to develop my faith, and now I need it and I have it. So whatever it is, I am good with it.
Anyway, this situation is going to try to get the best of me. But I am going to step back away from it, and do things differently. This time I am going to throw my hands to the air and say; “I give. I have done all I can, I’ve done my best. This is out of my control, please take the reins.”
Yep. That’s my BIG plan. The challenges are temporary and I have faith that good will come my way. That’s all I can do and this is what I believe.
Me having faith, who knew?
Tip: Practice acceptance and know that it is different from agreeing.
Inspiration: ” All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness the important thing is they should be part of our daily lives.”~ Dalai Lama
One-thing one-day: Be kind today, and if you are down pull someone else up.
The last few attempts at writing a post have me lost. Here are the various titles:
Am I the only one?
It’s a small world.
Get a life.
I can’t get a coherent thought on to the screen. Because I am so perplex as to why I find it so difficult to live my life by my own rules, and beliefs. I mean I do for the most part, but there are always these interruptions, when someone has to drop a boatload of judgment on me, in what I feel is the most condescending way.
My rules: don’t engage, get away from the conversation, change the topic. But what did I do today? I failed at my own rules.
I tried to explain the way I thought. I was hoping for a sliver of understanding. What I got was dismissive, and basically a statement saying I am weird, no one else is like that, and it ( whatever the f*ck “it” is) is my fault.
So when I say this journey was going to teach me something it has. And here’s my lesson for today: All of the reasons I left town nearly thirty years ago are still here alive and well. Small towns thrive on gossip and it’s totally acceptable.
There’s a strong overcast of judgmental gossip about people I don’t even remember and I really don’t have any interest in it. I mean seriously, I have moved on. I don’t care. I wish no one ill will, but I also don’t want to hear random bullsh*t about various people when I haven’t even seen them or talked with them since I was eighteen years old.
Today I was the gossip topic for two other people. One was on the phone here and the other had called. I heard my mother lie about where I lived and continue to talk about my children. Like it’s this person’s business. I left the house. I was disgusted. And quite honestly I still am. So this woman (the caller) who hasn’t said a peep to me since 1980, calls my mother and starts the inquisition.
Later I add my two cents. My mother replies to me, “I don’t think it’s weird. Don’t you ever call her mother?” I was floored. “No,” I answered , ” Why would I?” I don’t call any old high school friend’s mothers. I never have in my entire life.
So this makes me the odd-ball. No wonder I left so many years ago. Heaven help me. I can’t do this on my own.
Tip: Do not engage.
Inspiration: “It is one of my sources of happiness never to desire a knowledge of other people’s business. ” ~Dolley Madison
One-day one-thing: Create a fresh outlook, go somewhere and take photographs.