Saturday, November 29, 2014

Ouch. How to set goals and fail with grace



MY FRIENDS!

Well, the last you heard from me, I was all set to walk roughly 30 miles in 30 days and then...crickets.

Am I right?  How did you do?

My progress didn't go so well.  For various reasons, guys. Excuses, Excuses, am I right?

Well, the good thing is, at least I got a post-idea out of the whole mess.

Aren't you so thankful for fresh starts and grace and the chance to just begin again?

Yes. Please. Forever and Ever Amen.

Well, this is what I've figured out so for...

Step One...

Realize that you are a terrible human being and then focus that energy for good.


Ha.  I'm totally kidding on this one.  If you've set a goal, and it's fallen flat, chances are, you're feeling pretty crummy.  Let yourself feel crummy for a while.  It's ok.  That's kind of the point of setting a goal, right?  You feel good when you meet it...you feel bad when you don't.

Right now, the idea of getting over this hump and setting some NEW GOALS for the winter has me feeling weirdly excited.  Focus on the ideas below, and you can also find that strange balance of disappointment, excitement, and determination.

Let's be weird together. ;)

2.  Stay the course.  Think about your goal.  Did you accomplish anything at all?  My guess is...you probably did! And congrats!  If your goal was to pay off all your debt by the new year, and you only made it half way, that's still cause for celebration!  Keep doing what you're doing.  It's working, my friend!

3.  Find something to celebrate.  In the midst of all this November Craziness, I did manage to up my vitamin game.  I have been the Vitamin Queen these days.

You guys.

What should my crown look like?
...a crown made of vitamins?
Who's going to make it?
Can we hire these kinds of things out?

All this to say, my overall goal is to focus on my HEALTH so...I'm happy about that.  Vitamin-taking was a habit I had really let fall by the wayside, but I'm back at it.  Folic acid for days, y'all.  ;)

4.  Time travel.  Uh... let's be honest.  I worry about my weight and overall fitness level in general.  When I think about giving up, I picture myself 30 years from now.  Heavy. Tired.  Bored.  When times get tough and I don't think I'll ever find a way to maintain a healthy/active lifestyle, I think about Future Me, and she wishes that in my 30's, I would have found a way to make it work.

Powerful stuff.

Don't worry, Future Me...I'm comin' to the rescue!

So.  What's next?

I went to the gym the other day, and it just felt really good.  It feels good to be surrounded by people who care about the same thing you do- maintaining an active, healthy lifestyle.

My overall goal has been to "pick up momentum" in terms of exercise.  I had a health coach tell me one time that "A body in motion stays in motion."  It's so true.

I don't know that my momentum is back in full swing, but I do know that the ball is rolling...the wheels are turning, and such.

Good things are coming, and good things are already here.

Love and you can do it,






Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Old Joy #482

Guys. I wanna make this long. Like reeeeaaaallll long.

But, I ain't gonna.

Last week, Jen Hatmaker wrote about her mom's cancer diagnosis and how much she had feared  it would shake her faith...and how much it actually hadn't.  (I'm paraphrasing, obviously).

My friend (I wish), Jen Hatmaker is able to look her mother in the eye and declare that God is still good.

And I get it.  Kind of.

Tim and I have whispered the same prayer for about 2 years running.

Oh, for heaven's sake.

It is one of those requests that you never imagined having to pray over and over and over again.

But, you do.

It's the kind of request that ignites public weeping.  Very public weeping.  Sorry, Panera.

Do you have those, too?

Are you ready to give up?

Me too.

Wanna trade?  You pray for mine and I'll pray for yours, and it'll all come out in the wash.

'Cept when you accidentally end up being the one who gets blessed with a furry, brown dachshund, don't come whining to me.

Kidding.

But...imagine my wonder and surprise to discover, after all this time, that I can look my husband in the eye and declare that God is still good.



September 2007 

Forever and ever Amen.



Monday, October 27, 2014

Autumn Walking Challenge Part 2

     In case you missed it, I'm challenging myself to walk for 20 minutes (a mile) everyday for the next 30 days.  It's not too late to join in!  Part one is here. This is Part 2.  I wanted to write about some suggestions I think may help us experience a higher rate of success.



1. You need a contingency plan.  I accidentally typed "contingency plant,"  Ha. I guess you'll need one of those, too.

You guys.  Let's not pretend.  I KNOW at some point during the next 30 or so days, it's going to be like, 9:46pm and I'll still be waiting to get my walk done.

Let's be prepared...so at 9:46 at night, we're still ready to make the good and right choice.

Rain.  Kitchen catastrophes.  Traffic.  It's all comin' our way.  Let's be ready.

I found this walk on Youtube that I thought looked kind of cool.  Anything by Leslie Sansone is good, too.

I know some of these video can be kind of cheesy/not seem productive, but anything that keeps us moving is a GOOD THING. :)

Hang in there!

2. Create a visual reminder- I am using a really pretty fall photo I took on one of my recent walks as my phone's lock screen.  Take a picture of something you enjoyed seeing on your walk today and make it your wallpaper or phone lock screen.  Write a quote on a post-it and stick it to your mirror.  Pin something on Pinterest.  Just find something walk-related and PUT IT IN FRONT OF YOUR FACE! :)

3. Look ahead at your schedule- This Thursday, I'm booked from 3-8pm....at least.  I need to figure out how I can get in my walk so I'm not dragging my feet around the block in the middle of the night...haha. (Not safe! Not safe!)   Which leads me to...

4. Consider splitting your time - You may have to decide that you're going to walk ten minutes in the morning...five minutes in the parking lot after work...and 5 minutes once you get home.  That's ok!  Just start moving!  One thing I'm considering is showering at night.  We're having some really beautiful, mild weather, so I really don't sweat on my walks.  I think I might shower at night and use the extra time in the morning to squeeze in a walk.  That way, when I get back inside, I'm just ready to change clothes and go.  Also, keep in mind that this can be really simple!  For example, today, I walked in my "work" clothes.  (My leopard print ballet flats are really comfortable)! :)

Don't trick yourself into thinking you have to change clothes and make a big production of it.   Yes.  You may occasionally want to change into gym clothes and really log some QUICK MILES, but don't overcomplicate it if you don't have to. :) As long as your comfortable in what you're wearing...just walk in it!

5. Track your progress- I'm using these super cute mini-calendars from Hello Cuteness to check off all the work-outs I've gotten in this month!

6. Think about WHY you're doing this -

Here's an article about 8 Astonishing Benefits of Walking !  I love it!  #1 and #6 BLEW me away. Wow!  Powerful stuff!  I'm trying to be a mature adult and not mention #2. ;)

I find, when I'm not regularly exercising, my body just feels really out of control.  I feel this way the most when I get in the shower in the mornings.  I just feel really soft and glumpy.  Attractive, I know.



Then this sparks a sense of urgency in me, "I HAVE to do something! I HAVE to get to the gym! Make it stop!!!"

Obviously, this is not a fantastic way to start my day.

Over the next 30 days, I'm really looking forward to waking up at peace and feeling a bit more solid in terms of my body.

I hope this list will help us experience success.  For me, I think the most helpful part pertained to the Youtube videos.  I know there will be days when the gym is crowded and the weather is bad, and I'll just need a change of pace.

What did I miss? How will you set yourself up for success? Let's help each other out!

My best to you, friends!


Sunday, October 26, 2014

Autumn Walking Challenge Part 1

Hi, my friends!

     Making time for the gym this season has been a struggle for me.  Or rather, making MYSELF make time for the gym is the struggle.  I've heard a body in motion stays in motion....and a body at rest stays at rest.  All this to say, I've struggled to pick up momentum.

So I started thinking about how I could "easily" get moving again.  The same old,

"I am going to the gym TONIGHT!"
                        ........

"Well...maybe I'm NOT going to the gym tonight..."song and dance just isn't working.

Then,  I remembered reading about a group of co-workers who challenged themselves to walk at least a mile a day, every day.  Many of them did it for an ENTIRE YEAR.

I have no idea how they made that happen, but I'm willing to try it for the next 30 days.

You should join me!  I've got a fun little group happening over on Instagram.  We're spreading the word and getting excited!

If you're interested, here are some ways we can connect.

- Leave a comment here with the best way to contact you (instagram/email/twitter?)

- Use the hashtag #walkyourheartout  Take some photos of your walks/work outs and tag me / us!  I'd love to see what an autumn looks like in your neck of the woods...cause here...these trees be' gorgeous!

 I know that hashtag has already been used a few times, but when I chose it initially, nothing came up!  The data on my phone must have been slow that day (?) Rats!  That's ok.  It will just make it easier for MORE people to find us, I suppose. :) 

- Connect with others! Follow people who have already expressed an interest in joining!  Let's encourage each other along the way! Elizabeth from The Young Retiree has already been a huge help in spreading the word!  Find her! :)

- I'll start posting to both my personal and blog FB accounts.  You can find my blog account here!

- If you'd like to see the initial instagram post, you can find it here! 

Here are my own, personal rules.  Feel free to set your own!

1. Starting Monday, October 27th, I will move my body for at least 20 minutes a day.  It takes me roughly 20 minutes to walk one mile.  Also, for the record, "regular" work-outs count...zumba, arc trainer, lifting, etc.  I just chose walking because in my mind, it's "easy."  On those days where I'm just not FEELING IT, I have to tell myself that ANYONE can squeeze in a 20 minute walk.

2.  I'm giving myself 3 "passes."  I figure if I only miss 3, I've still met my goal by 90%

...BUT...

3. For every walk I miss, I'm going to donate a pack of diapers to our local pregnancy center (including my 3 passes...so technically...I already owe 3 packs...haha).  Diapers are expensive, y'all. Money is a motivator for me, so this is gonna hurt. ;)

4. I want some loot!  If I meet my 90% goal, I'm gonna go spend some serious cash at Sephora (and at my house, like, 30 dollars qualifies as "serious cash," just so we're clear). ;)

Tomorrow, I'm going to post a Part 2 which will include some suggestions / a plan for success and the benefits of walking!


Love & forward, March!



Saturday, October 11, 2014

All Ye Who Are Weary

One thing I've noticed about the women online that I love and admire is their ability to rest.
             
They rest. 

They rest intentionally and they don't apologize for it. Not only to THEY rest..they encourage others to do so as well.

I rarely enjoy rest.

Don't get me wrong. I spend plenty of time just doing nothing...but I never actually call it rest.

It isn't intentional.  I often feel guilty WHILE I'm doing it and sometimes...it isn't actual rest, it's just procrastination.  #socialmedia  #candycrush #plantsvszombies

You guys.

So, it starts this vicious cycle.

     I know in my heart that I'm not well-rested.  So I'm emotionally exhausted and overwhelmed.   So I struggle to accomplish the things I'd like to finish.  So I don't "rest" because I feel like "things" aren't getting finished.  So I procrastinate because I'm exhausted and overwhelmed.  So I struggle to accomplish the things I'd like to finish.

Um.  I'm not even going to try to edit that mess of a paragraph, but you get my point.

With that being said, Scarlett had (minor) surgery yesterday and came home today.

Tim and I are on the hunt for a new couch, and we already sold ours on Craigslist.  Whoopsies. File that under: Things that seemed like a good idea at the time.

We are currently lounging on an air mattress covered in my grandma's old quilts.

This is one of those times where I'm like...

Oooohhh...Girls.  When it comes to marriage, choose wisely. Who cares about the stinkin' wedding?

You want to build the kind of life where you and your husband can sit on a half inflated mattress that's covered in dog hair and Diet Coke* and still call it good.  :) 


And it is. So good.




My point?

Netflix just added House Hunters & Gilmore Girls.  I just bought Let's All Be Brave.



This afternoon, we are resting.  Forever & ever. Amen.

*I'm exaggerating.  For those of you who plan to spend the night at our house, it's a perfectly good, almost new mattress. No spills. ;)  

Love & the weary world rejoices,



Sunday, October 5, 2014

Influence ReCap

Hi, my friends!  I wanted to write a quick post that sums up my experience at The Influence Conference in Indianapolis last weekend!  There was so much amazing truth and wisdom shared.  I'd love to unpack more of it on the blog as time allows.

I had the amazing opportunity to listen to...

Jamie Ivey
Jesse Connolly
Hayley Morgan
Jen Lula
Nancy Ray
Lara Casey
Sammy Rhodes 


Here were my "top ten" take-aways!


    1. You have to preach to yourself until you BELIEVE whatever it is God is telling you.  Choose three sentences to sum up what YOU “need to hear” and repeat those as often as needed. (Hayley/Lara) 
    2. We are chosen people. We should not be ashamed. (Jamie) 
    3. I love my Influence friends. Those Network members are just my people.
    4. Never underestimate the power of a young woman, up past her bedtime, who's been given a microphone ;) 
    5. You can never know how people really feel about you. You always know how Jesus feels about you, and He loves you. (Sammy)
    6. “But God...” We are sad. We are afraid. We feel ashamed...But God... (Hayley)
    7.  God hates "MY" kingdom.  God LOVES HIS kingdom.  (Jesse) 
    8. My identity is always secure because I am a child of God.  (Jamie) 
    9. The impossible is possible with God. (Lara) 
    10. When we confess our sins, God promises to heal us. (Lara)

I got a lot out of Jen and Nancy's talks as well, but their advice was more practical/business-related.  Their infinite wisdom will come out in bits and pieces, I'm sure.  I'll tweet them both when I make my first million. ;)

I had the chance to meet some of the ladies from my online community group.  So much love.


From Left to Right

Jenna // A Mamma Collective
Frances // The Living Letter Chronicles 
Me!
Kristen // When at Home

I was also able to room with my friend Katie again, and we met up with Lauren who we met on Twitter through Katie's An Inspired Life Book Club.



More! More! More! :)

I'm sad that it's over, but I'm excited for what's next.  I know this time has a purpose.  How amazing is that?

The Conference has inspired me to take one night off a week just to work on the blog/book/business side of things.  No cooking. No cleaning.  Just Biz-ness.  Tim is really supportive of this which is sweet. I just hope I can give up a little control for one night (he's a great cook). :)  I'm excited to see what comes of this.  I need a new word for "excited."

Love, and Scared is the New Brave,*

* (I can't take credit for this quote, if you remember who said, it, feel free to share!)

Also, thanks to Kirsten and Katie for the photos!  


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Influence Conference 2014

Hi, my friends!  I am so excited to write this post and link up to The Influence Network for a quick meet and greet!

Just wanted to do a quick intro. and say, "Hello!"

My name is Holly, and I'm a hugger.  :)

I live in The Midwest with my husband and our two dogs.  We've been married for six years, and we love to travel, cook together, and watch like, ALL THE NETFLIX.  #Fringe.

I also like riding my bike and working on crafts.  Also, did I mention Netflix?  ;)

I went to The Influence Conference last year after having left my job after 9 years.  It was such a refreshing change of pace and a safe place to find community.  I had NO IDEA what I was getting myself into...I literally just bought my ticket and hoped for the best...haha.

I am so excited to see what God is going to do this year, and I'm super stoked to meet YOU!

I am hoping to do a "meet up" on the first night for people who are attending alone.  It is super scary to walk into these kinds of events without knowing a soul.  I'm planning to send out a tweet on the first night with an offer to buddy up with anybody who may need it!  It doesn't mean we have to be "besties" all weekend, but at least you'll have somebody to sit with the first night!  :)

I am totally splurging on a notebook and pen for The Conference, and I'm also bringing a tumbler for ice water. Those have become like, my security blankets.  Weird. I know.  My mom and sister are the same way. They always show up with a lil' glass o' ice water.  Bless.  

So. I always THINK I take too many selfies until I actually need a selfie.  And then I'm like, "WHERE ARE ALL THE SELFIES?"

Um. This was our Christmas card last year.  I'll try to do better, guys. ;)



You can find me on twitter and instagram! 

Over & Out!