A is for Adventure #AtoZChallenge

You can’t stay in your corner of the forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes.

-winnie the pooh/ A. A. Milne

This seemed like an appropriate quote to kick off the Blogging A to Z Challenge. I’ve been hunkered down in my corner of the forest for two years now and it’s time for me to venture back out into the world. As much as I’ve enjoyed being a homebody and taking advantage of the pandemic as an excuse to not go anywhere, it’s getting a bit stale. I need something new. An adventure would be the perfect thing to liven things up.

I have made a few baby steps in this direction. We are going to a family birthday party this weekend. I have plans to go see a live show of one of my favorite podcasts that is coming to a nearby city. I ate in a restaurant last week!!!

While these might seem like small things, for me and my best friend, Anxiety, this is huge. And to clarify, I’ve always struggled with varying degrees of anxiety but this one is a new one. It’s pandemic-related. It took me by surprise. I guess I expected to reach a point where I felt comfortable being around many people in public settings and I would do it. That hasn’t been the case. I’m okay with the things I did regularly for the last two years but I struggle with being around people who are not wearing masks.

I’m working on it. I’m talking with people about it. I’m using coping strategies. I’m saying no when it’s too much. I’ll get there.

Until then, I’ll take baby steps out of my corner of the forest to the place where the others are. I know I’ll get there and Adventure will be waiting.

Happy Weekend!

-Kat

On Kindness

“Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.”    -Scott Adams

blanket

When things are tough, it is easy to feel like you’re alone. Even surrounded by loving friends and family, feelings can become overwhelming and all consuming. That’s how it can be for me at times.

And then when I least expect it I am reminded of the wonderful, caring people in my life. Whether it’s a text checking in or a beautiful soft throw, it’s a happy feeling to know that even in most trying times, someone is out there thinking of you. (Thank you, my friend, for both! Every time I see this throw with all of those wonderful positive words on it or feel its softness, I’ll think of your kindness and friendship and know I’m not alone.)

Kindness really does have a larger impact than we ever realize. And I try to keep that in mind. In my quest to boost myself into a better place, I’m so grateful for those kind words that bolster my spirits and remind me that although I might have to do some heavy lifting on my own, I’m never truly alone.

-Kat

Listening to Inner and Outer Voices- Take 2

Today I’m sharing a post that I originally published just over four years ago. I had forgotten I wrote it but as I read it again, it really hit home with me. If I had the time and eyes, I could have written this last week. I’ve made a few small changes but it’s pretty close to the original text. 

Originally published May 13, 2015

Every Wednesday, Ronovan invites us to Be Wonderful on Wednesday. This is my contribution. It’s not quite what I had planned but that’s the way these things go.

The evening before my birthday,  a family member wrote a very moving post dedicated to me on Facebook. I was tired, emotional and blown away after reading her words.

She described me as- giving, non-judgmental, open minded, kind hearted and caring. She used words like inspirational and blessing. Me. Inspirational. A blessing. She talked about how I’ve been there for everything from breakdowns and tantrums to hospital trips. She used a bunch of other adjectives that I won’t even mention- because I just don’t see myself that way. My initial reaction was an overwhelming feeling of love for the beautiful person who wrote it. I re- read the words and they hit me in the face. This moving tribute was not how I would have described myself.

“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.”  -Brene Brown

If I can be completely open with you, lately I would describe myself as angry, unrealistic, interfering, stubborn, overly sensitive. I’ve questioned every move I’ve made.

The truth of the matter is that the only words I hear are the ones in my head. Although I try to be all the things described in that post, that’s not how I see myself.

In fact, because my inner voice is so loud it drowns out the outer voice of my family member.

“It’s not what you are that holds you back, it’s what you think you are not.”

-Denis Waitley

Needing something more and unclear on what it was, I showed her post to a friend.  He read it and nodded. I shrugged, tried to smile, failed. Is that really me? was my unasked question.

He stared at me and said, “It’s true. And you should be hearing this way more often than you probably do.” His voice was gruff and he changed the subject.

I’ve looked at that post so many times since she first posted it. I’m trying to drown out the litany of negative thoughts- the ones that accompany every doubt I have when I read the words.

“Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right.” -Henry Ford

It made me think. How often do we walk around thinking positive, inspirational and affirmative thoughts to ourselves about ourselves? Well, I’ve just confessed that I don’t. In fact, if my inner voice were a person I would not want to hang out with her. She’s a real downer. And yet, I listen to her and I doubt it when someone tells me nice things about myself.

I think it’s important to maintain a healthy balance between the inner and outer voices. While it’s important to be realistic, there’s no real benefit from allowing your inner voice to beat you up and drag you down. Nor should you allow someone’s outer voice to do the same.

And when someone tells you that you are kind or caring or the backbone of the family or even inspirational, you should take it as the gift that it is. You should realize that people don’t waste their time trying to make you feel good like that if they don’t care an awful lot. And you should embrace those outer voices close to you and let them drown out that negative reel that might play in your head occasionally.

I originally wanted to write a post about her lovely words because they made me feel pretty wonderful and loved. But possibly even more importantly, her words made me very aware of the not so pretty  things I allow to run through my head and the realization that it needs to stop. I’m not sure if I will ever feel comfortable accepting compliments from people but it’s time for me to realize that maybe…just maybe they are right!

What about you? Are you able to accept compliments and embrace them? Or do you sometimes battle with that negative voice that pops up in my head at times? 

Peace and Love,

-Kat

 

 

Sunshine, Rainbows, Unicorns….

nighttimeHi! I’m back again, dropping in when I can. Life is getting to be a bit much these days and I need to be here in the blogging world where I belong!!

I’ve been pretty much a big downer lately. Yeah, I can see you rolling your eyes from behind my screen, like DUH!? I know it. I’ve actually written posts that I did not publish because they depressed me. It’s no secret. Things aren’t going well over here in Kat Land. But I found myself with a little free time and a need to perk myself up. I was looking for motivation and found a few quotes that I really need to keep in mind

I thought I would share them with you:

  • Your calm mind is the ultimate weapon against your challenges. So relax.” ― Bryant McGill
  • Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.” – Dalai Lama
  • People inspire you, or they drain you. PICK THEM WISELY.” –Hans F. Hasen
  • “Dearly Beloved, We are gathered here today to get through this thing called life!” -Prince

And my favorite for the day-

“I will breathe. I will think of solutions, I will not let my worry control me. I will not let my stress level break me. I will simply breathe. And it will be okay. Because I don’t quit.” – Shayne McClendon

Here are some things I’m going to work on making part of every day:

  1. Get more fresh air, regardless of the weather.
  2. Drink more water.
  3. Force myself to take some down time.
  4. Read, read, read.
  5. Try to incorporate some of my pre-downer life back into this place I’m in now so I don’t feel so out of touch.

So, maybe this post isn’t as bright as the title implied but I’m hoping it’s somewhat of an improvement!!

Hope you are all doing well and the sun is shining down on you!

-Kat, who hopes to be here more often…..and a bit more cheerful!