One of my favorite things about being a blog follower is how the experience goes from just following along to eventually feeling like you are taking advice from a friend. As a result of my love for blogs, I have purchased clothes, tried hair styles, decorated mantles, read books, organized my office, discovered health tricks, and become inspired in countless ways! Reading about a solution that an everyday person, just like me, finds enriching to their lives has been really helpful – so here on HALF I thought I would get in on the info sharing action and include a weekly favorites post! Each week I will share one of my favorites things! The topic areas will range from favorite clothes to organizing solutions even some health tricks. Really anything that we just can’t live without – or would really not want to – at the Bessette home and maybe you can find something you love too!
Since last October I have had a new morning routine: get at least a half hour early for quiet time of prayers, journaling all while curled up in a blanket on the couch with a steaming cup of fresh coffee! Just thinking about it I can’t wait for tomorrow morning…. it starts my day off slower than my normal hair on fire way and it makes me remember what truly matters in this life. Ya’ll it has been awesome.
Participating in Rachel Hollis last 90 days they are a few goals you set: drink half your body weight in ounces of water daily, get 30 minutes of exercise, journal and get up an hour early each day to work on something to improve yourself. Having participated in 2018 I knew the chances of 100% success were a little hard and especially as we had suddenly found ourselves in a season with Danny sick again, life being predictable or even stable was becoming less and less likely. So I decided I would strive for all of these – but I was going to make the early morning time about my prayer life and that daily time the priority. I would certainly work on moving my body and have found water to be fairly easy for me…. but it was the idea of creating a way to start the day that would center my soul, unburden my heart, and get my mind on the right wave length that would have the most benefits. So everyday I would do this practice and see if I could make it stick. Well guess what – I did and not only has it stuck….it has changed my life (seriously).
My personality is filled with perfectionist traits: a-type, OCD, worry wart, judgmental – if you aren’t able to do it all right, nothing is worth doing. When I type it out, even I know it sounds ridiculous, but truly when I am living life things like “did you make your bed, you don’t want to die in a car crash and have your family think you were messy” actually cross my mind. I am hard on myself ALL THE TIME and the confusing thing is even if it is not the healthiest way to live, it has brought me worldly success. Being driven can result in getting ahead in this life and so we don’t always realize how wrong we are. But the truth is when I have faced season of life where perfectionism isn’t even possible, I go one of two ways: rise to the occasion and come out stronger or turn into a whirling tornado of emotion and confusion, who doesn’t want to feel so out of control, so I lash out. And here is the hard part – some of the realties of my life forgive that behavior: sick husband, all their financial needs fall to her, trying to balance caregiver and regular life. Even still I don’t want to live that way. On and off I have sought help and in recent years, I have really committed. What I have found is I am at my healthiest if I set aside quiet time, if I read things that lift me up, if I journal out my feelings and anger and worry to God, and if I know I have made getting my head and heart right a priority. But those needs don’t always work well with busy lives….. in fact sometimes I let the voice of “you are being selfish wasting time on yourself” in and I wonder if I am being wrong. That is where the AM time comes in…. chances of having to say no to other things to have this time is more rare and most people in my world don’t even know I up doing it. Plus to get up early, I have to go to bed a little earlier and since I have come to enjoy this time so much I have the proper motivation to do so – double win.
So what makes this time so valuable, beyond just setting aside the peaceful moments? First of all I always start with Jesus Calling. This daily devotional is simple and yet extremely powerful. It reminds me that I am investing not just in myself, but in time with God – the only one who will sustain me in this crazy world and the only thing in this life to give yourself to and will get more than ten fold back for the efforts (a-types really like that!). Next up I will journal 10 things I am grateful for and my list of goals that I want as if they are already accomoplished. Thank you again Rachel Hollis who has a variety of resources on why gratitude can help change your whole mood and why your brain will actually work harder towards goals if you write them as if they are part of your current life. Ya’ll this lesson in gratitude has been incredible – I can be in the midst of a horrific hospital moment with Danny and find a way to feel gratitude to have a warm place to sit on this winter day, even if it in the middle of bad news. It brings such peace to my heart and slows my minds cycle of worry. And the goals writing…. you’re just gonna have to trust me and try it…. pretty cool to see how they will stick a little better with you if you treat them more like a given in your life. Finally I aways have a Bible Study going (for example right now I am reading Lysa’s “Not Supposed to be This Way” ) that is easily broken up into quick segments and gives me excellent food for thought. Finally to end my AM quiet time, I always right a “thought of the day” in my journal that is something that has struck me from my readings and time that morning. Couple these resources with a cozy blanket and my first cup of hot coffee for the day and you guys, I feel on top of the world and its usually before 7AM! That is an amazing way to start the day.
If you are looking for a new goal to kick of March or maybe interested in centering yourself a little, I can’t encourage you to consider early morning quiet time enough! My preference is to have a full 45-60 minutes, but even days that I can only get 15 it helps! And on those days were you have to get going and it just doesn’t happen – that is OK too…. you will find time during your day or in the evening. It will give you such clarity and peace, I promise it will become a practice you make part of your life. I am so incredibly grateful for the learning of this lesson and wish you the same peace too!
Thank you so much for reading and remember to make it a great day!