Practicing positivity and connection

This month I was true to my word about increasing my positivity and putting words into actions. As I mentioned in my post, this is something I want to focus on for the second half of the year, so technically they weren’t goals I could complete this month.

My life has been anything but simple this month (I’m actually really thankful it’s over), but it only reinforced my need and desire to be more aware of my attitude and mindset. There’s a popular quote that “life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of how you react to it.” I won’t lie, I often fail at the reaction part. Now I’m trying to ask myself, “what are you going to do about it?” rather than wallowing in self pity or stewing (which, less be honest, is a much easier approach).

A lot of my goals sprung from my need to improve my relationships with others, to make people more of a priority by putting honest effort and vulnerability into it. This month I got a clear sense of just how important connection, support and relationships are. I tend to overly value my independence so this month was a good reminder I can’t tackle the world’s problems on my own.

After a particularly bad week, I decided to take a somewhat spontaneous trip to spend the weekend with the middle and her adorable chocolate lab Mocha. While I don’t think our walks with Mocha cancelled out the ice cream cake and other goodies, there’s nothing better than sitting outside on a gorgeous night for a long life chat with a sister followed by round two of life chats with a morning coffee skype date with the little. It was exactly what I needed, and even just looking at this post-pedicure photo puts me in a better frame of mind.

Mocha Jo

Mostly I’m trying to address my mindset by surrounding myself with people and things that make me happy. My efforts have also spilled into work, and thankfully I have a supportive and engaged group of women around who didn’t mind the new additions.

Office Additions

Gratitude board: I’ll have more on this later, but sometimes it’s helpful just to stop and appreciate what you have. Even if it’s not updated daily, the little reminders of what we have to be thankful for make me a little happier (particularly since it’s right outside the door to the office I share with Lindsay so I see it constantly).

Inspiration board: Our newest co-worker designed the chevron board that we use to hang articles, quotes and essentially anything that inspires us and others. Turns out I’m not the only one in the office that loves chevron!

Personal Notes: I got this idea from an organization I participated in as an undergrad. Each person has a decorated page for other staff members to write about skills they bring to the team, personality traits they admire – essentially just anything that they appreciate about people on staff. It’s just a reminder of the connection and love we have at the office.

All in all, my efforts seem to be paying off. At least as much as they can. I just finished Daring Greatly (it’s replacing my obsession with The Happiness Project) and among other takeaways is the fact that this is a practice. I’m still going to want to wallow and feel overwhelmed and hate uncertainty. It’s a process and a practice, and as long as I’m dedicated to checking in with my reactions and trying to look on the bright side, things can only get better. At least that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

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About dakotalizzie

I'm a twentysomething young professional living in Nebraska. My blog centers on the things I love - my family, dogs, friends, crafting, cooking, life chats and health. All these things help me lead the good life, and isn't that really what it's all about?

One response to “Practicing positivity and connection

  1. Wow, I really like the gratitude board, and also that there’s such a supportive group for the personal notes! I read an article once where the author says she keeps a “Feelgood” folder in her email. In it go all the funny or kind emails she’s gotten, and she reads them when she needs a bit of confidence or positivity from other people. It’s pretty long, but it’s called “The Awesomest 7-Year Postdoc” if that interests you at all. I’ve started doing it too and it totally helps with the feeling stuck.

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