Hello new year, new attitude, new opportunities!
Blessings and best wishes this first month of 2018 as you celebrate, move forward and soar! I love January because we get a chance to begin fresh and I pray that’s happening in every phase of your life. For me, it’s a new home in a new city, new routines and challenges at work, home and in the marketplace—Lordy, everything’s new!
I have realized over the past six months that routine is what keeps me sane and on track. When chaos and change replace that, what comes next is often difficult and uncomfortable but what I’ve learned has been very valuable. Here are four of my favorite lessons for 2018:
- Embrace change, roll with the flow, and grow strong. Years ago I said “change belongs in your pocket,” and I meant it. I know now that change doesn’t have to be good or bad, it just IS what it is. If you don’t change, you die. We can change and grow incrementally or we can be thrashed around like a sparrow in a hurricane—when we’re lucky, we get to choose. Go ahead, dip your toe in and imagine where you can go, what you can be, and watch God do what only God loves to do—hold, protect and love us unconditionally.
- Lighten your load. I told my husband that he did not need 12 tackle boxes, 65 punch bowls and 99 fishing rods. If you have said items, the lesson is you don’t either! My husband collects “things” and they accumulate so we always have more stuff than he realizes. The book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” by Marie Kondo, encourages us to get rid of things that don’t “spark joy.” My friend Amanda had pictures of her efforts and it was amazing how much stuff she didn’t “need.” There is value in this exercise, whether you’re moving or not. Most of us are attached to our stuff–either emotionally or in some significant way, so this may be easier said than done but this year work to declutter your mind, your home and your life.
- ALWAYS make time for fun, friends and fellowship (TF). The old adage “all work and no play makes Jackie a dull girl,” is true. If you’re too busy to have lunch or spend quality time with your friends and loved ones, fix that. Your time is precious so guard it carefully by prioritizing tasks and saying “NO” to the “busyness” we get caught up in so you can do things that make happy memories later. Don’t leave your TF time to chance—put it on your calendar now so you know it’s important. AND, laughter is great medicine so laugh until you cry at least seven times a week.
- When you can’t find your shoes, ask for help. We had lots of stuff at our old house –no surprise—and my moving method has always been when moving day gets close, put the remaining “stuff” in a box and label it as such. Somehow some of my labeled boxes of shoes destined for my closet got waylaid with the “stuff” boxes in the garage and I haven’t seen them since. Our new garage is much smaller and is now so full we can’t even get a sheet of paper in if we tried, so I have a couple pair and that’s it. I have surmised that the only way to find my shoes (and other missing items) is to ask my friends and loved ones to converge one Saturday morning soon (February 9) to clear out the garage boxes so my shoes can re-appear and my car can go inside. So, lost shoes, heavy burdens, challenges, etc., are all the same: when we need help, ask!
Make 2018 your best year ever, be blessed and shine brightly!
Looking for inspiration, empowerment, uplift, straight talk, an encouraging word to brighten your day? You’ve arrived! Meet Dr. Cynthia Ann Bond Hopson, best-selling author, educator, inspirational speaker, sistergirl–she’s all that and more. All the way from Stanton, TN (you can’t get there from here) to 50 states, six continents and everything in between, she’s wise, witty and altogether wonderful. She enthusiastically invites you to slow down, sit a spell, and share a giggle or two.