Allowing Myself

…to feel, to love, to be.

Tag: freedom

Wear What You Want – Freedom

Freedom.

That’s one of the things I took away from the retreat a few weeks ago. It’s something I wrestle with daily.

That I can decide what to do with my time; when to do work, when to read a book, when to clean or nap or go outside.  That I get to decide what I want to wear. And I can wear anything I want.

I struggle with giving myself permission. Apparently, I’m always looking to someone else for clarity.

There was a woman at the retreat named Sherry who had the most fabulous style (check her out on her site – Simply Celebrate). And Laurie said that Sherry embraces her freedom in her style – and if she didn’t dress like that, then how would her people, her tribe, find her?

Since the retreat, I’ve been embracing what clothes make me happiest, even if it means pairing a gray skirt with brown boots and yellow t-shirt. Getting styled gave me so much information about what I truly like. I mean, if I love navy, why not wear navy?! (True story: a girl walked into the bathroom today at work in a fabulous navy trench coat and I complimented her on it as she locked her stall door. I don’t normally compliment strangers, but it totally caught my eye).

I don’t have any answers for you. I’m just learning these things myself. How Sherry is an example – a living, happy example – of a woman dressing in what makes her happy – and that radiates outward from her, influencing and encouraging me to dress in the ways that make me happiest.

It’s somehow silly and radical at the same time.

Do you use your clothes to express who you are, truly? Do you have some outward way that signals people others as someone in their “tribe”? 

This Grateful Season – Freedom

Going back to my post the other day, I’m not trying to be smart or condescending. I don’t want to write this in a way that make you think I’m shaming you into voting, or that you’re an idiot if you voted for one candidate over another.

What I want to write about is how I have freedom. That as a woman in her 20s, I have the right to dress how I want, to education where I choose, to marry when I want, to my own bank accounts, my own job, to have or not have children and to vote. It is stunning to me that this election season brought up horrendous statements about women’s work and health issues, including the useless and hurtful monologues about rape. It is TWENTY-TWELVE people.

Politics make me so angry that I basically abstain. But I voted. My husband is a teacher. I am a woman of child-bearing age. These elections actually affect my life directly. And for that, I’m grateful for my right to vote, to choose, and to all of the women who came before me that cleared this path for me.

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For the month of November, I write each day about something I’m grateful for and call it Grateful Season. It’s my way of reviewing the amazing year I’ve had and helps me focus on blogging during the crazy holiday season uptick. Feel free to join me – just make sure you let me know!

A Good Day

 

I’m not sure what was going on today but my energy was odd. I ran 3miles this AM with Carter (that was great) and then at work I couldn’t concentrate. Instead of working deeply on a large project, I bounced around from task to task. On the verge of feeling frustrated, someone showed up unannounced to meet with me (first time ever in 15 months at my job). I knew that was my signal to give into the day and go with the flow.

The old me would’ve felt thrown under a bus, but I really did just go with it.

In retrospect, I accomplished a bunch of tasks, including moving some event plans along. Still, there’s a nagging sense of “could’ve done more” but tomorrow is another day.

All of this reminded me of an email I sent a friend this weekend. Below is part of what I wrote to her:

I have a fairly flexible schedule for work. This would actual be a nightmare for the me of 3 years ago, but I’ve learned through therapy and trial-and-error that I need to “put my oxygen mask on first”. Meaning, I spend a few hours in the morning taking care of myself: writing, spending time with Carter, exercising, eating and doing what I need to before I do work. Then I do all of my work at the office and then it’s back home. I’ve found you can’t do everything everyday so I pick and choose what I can. I do have things that are super important to me and I make sure those are priorities each week (exercising, sleeping, good convos with people, writing, spending time with my husband, reading and time alone).

I think the most important thing I want to pass on to other women is to be gentle with yourself. I’ve lowered my standards of a “productive” day to a “good” day… A productive day used to be to get everything done on my To Do list and maybe get to read or write. Now a good day is one where I accomplish one major work task and one major home task (clean a bathroom, grocery shop) and the rest of the day is enjoying my life. It’s a hard change to make from the crazy-NY-work-is-your-worth upbringing we experienced. Our work, being productive, does not prove our worth. You are worthy of your life and being here just by BEING you.

I took my own advice today. When I got home I didn’t force myself to do another thing on my list. Instead, I took Carter Cash out for a bike ride in the summer sun. And it was just what he and I needed. A good day.