Choosing Joy on Monday

Choosing Joy is tough…

(PSA – If you don’t want to read about “women’s issues” then don’t ready on)

It’s Monday. Again. It gets here so fast every week. And I found myself sitting at my desk – crying again. Why? IDK. Maybe because it’s that time of the month? Then I really thought about it.

Here’s how my day started:
1. I woke up with a slight hang-over
2. Right when I woke up I got pissed off at someone I work with
3. I was bummed because Joe slept in so I really didn’t get to snuggle him before I left for the day
4. My workout didn’t go as well I hoped
5. My work computer kept freezing up
6. Got up from my desk to shake off my attitude and when I took my tampax out the wrapper I dropped it on the floor. I didn’t have another one. I stopped keeping a stash in the ladies room because there is some crap person in my building will use all your tampax if you leave them. So…back to my office to get another one, blaming the “Assholes I work with.”
7. Trouble focusing at work because all I can think about is hanging out with my family while reading sweet mommy posts on facebook .

I got up from my desk and went BACK to the bathroom. And just took a time out. I really need to re-focus on finding joy. Yep, I just sat there.  Like a dude.

I truly believe our lives and our happiness are 95% our choices. There are those things that happen that we have no control over. Those can be big things (loss of a loved one), small things (bad hair day). It’s our day to day life that we can choose to be miserable. Or we can choose to find joy. I chose to have a tiny bit too much to drink last night. I chose to let my co-worker get the best of me. I chose to beat myself up over my workout.

Right from the beginning I said, “how my day started.” When I should have said is, “This is how I chose to start my day:” The big mistake I made was succumbing to all those negative thoughts and letting them eat away at me, making my Monday miserable.

1. I chose to drink too much last night. Oh well! Take some Advil and move on.
2. I will pray for my co-worker that they are not so overwhelmed
3. I love watching Joe sleep.
4. We all have things we need to work on. I’m really making good progress on my pull-ups and practicing every time I go to the gym. And I am very fortunate that I get to go to such a nice gym with super nice people.
5. I get paid the same way no matter how times my computer has to re-boot. And what a nice excuse to drink another coffee!
6. LOL! I’m so klutzy!
7. I am so fortunate that I have such a sweet family. I love my hubby and my boy so much that sometimes I feel like I could explode. Ben is so supportive of my goals and dreams. And Joe is so amazing. He changes and grows every day and gives the best snuggles in the whole world.

It’s so easy to fall into the “my life is miserable” cycle and feel down and sorry for yourself all the time. I encourage you to take responsibility for your life and the choices you make. Think about those choices and ask yourself if that choice (or the consequences of your choice) will bring you joy. Here’s how I try to remember to look at my less-than-optimal mornings like this morning:

1. Don’t dwell on mistakes you’ve made in the past. Pick yourself up, move on, and don’t look back.
2. You can’t control the actions of other people. You can only control YOUR reaction to them.
3. Any time I have with my boy is a gift. I cherish ALL of it.
4. Take the good with the bad! We have off days. We have things we need to work on.
5. Like #2, there are situations outside of your control. It’s how you deal with them that matters.
6. “You have to laugh at yourself, because you’d cry your eyes out if you don’t” -Emily Saliers (Indigo Girls)
7. My job gives me the means to provide a better life for the people who matter most to me. I love them so much and will do anything for them.

So. How do we get here/there – to a place of finding joy. I’m no licensed therapist or religious leader. But I can tell you what I do to try to find joy every day. First, I encourage you to walk around with a thankful heart. I was trying to find a way to begin to be less negative and I began this journey in my yoga practice. When I started my second round of 3 Week Yoga retreat, I began literally saying a small thankful prayer when folding my hands in gratitude. Next I really took focus on my breathing. When I took my deep breaths, I focused on breathing in new and joyful thoughts and exhaling out all the stress, anxiety, and negative thoughts of the day. After doing this for 30 minutes every day before bedtime, I began sleep better and it helped my overall attitude. Even Ben asked me what was changing – he noticed my attitude getting better and I was a LOT less stressed out. For me, that thankfulness and thoughtfulness in just 30 minutes a day started to beget appreciation and joy. Now I try it throughout my day. Just like anything else, this will take practice. You’ll have good days and bad days. The bad ones, I go back to my mat, decompress, and start over!

Not into prayer or Yoga?  Another idea: when you get into a negative spin, stop and say 3 positive things about the negative situation you’re thonking about.  Pick real positive attributes, not just something made up that you don’t really feel.

keep me posted and good luck! Xoxo

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