I Missed My Blogiversary!

Seven years, writing a new post every single day.

December 1, 2019 was the 7 year anniversary of this blog. Seven years, writing a new post every single day. That’s an amazing accomplishment, even if I do say so myself. When I started, I assumed it would be a 6 month project at most, because how on earth would I come up with a new topic every day? Surely no one has that much to say. And yet, here I am.

So you’d think I’d have remembered on the day. I should have taken myself out to dinner or gotten a massage or something. But no. It totally slipped my mind. WordPress had to remind me with their automated congratulations. I celebrated by eating apple pie for breakfast the next morning.

This blog has been a major part of my life. I spend at least 16 hours on it every week, and even more than that if you count the hours of stress over writer’s block and utter lack of inspiration. It’s been the source of great friendships and fascinating feedback. It has also been the source of my first book. I’ve also halfway cobbled together a second book, but I can’t seem to get motivated to finish it. (I was about to say that follow through is not my strong suit, but if that were the case, this blog wouldn’t exist. So the lack of a second book is due to basic laziness. Ouch.)

The bottom line is that I can’t imagine who I’d be anymore without this blog. I’m grateful that you’ve taken the time to read it, dear reader. I’ve marked my calendar so that I won’t miss this anniversary in future years. I hope there will be many more celebrations to come.

I can’t help but wonder, though, why it’s so easy to overlook our own accomplishments, even for those of us who wouldn’t think of overlooking the accomplishments of others. That sounds like the topic for a future blog post. Hmmm…

Feather-Pen-7

Don’t Should on Yourself

I think the only thing we should do in this world is stop saying should.

I should be thinner. I should do more housework. I should mow my lawn more often. I should stick up for myself more. I should wash all toxic people right out of my hair. I should not let people get to me. I should keep my opinions to myself. I should train my dog, wash my car, learn to wear makeup, toughen up, be more girly, shut up and take it, and for God’s sake, stop asking so many questions.

At some point in my life, all of these things have been said to me, quite often more than once. And then a funny thing happens. I start saying all those things to myself. I am great at beating myself up. That should be the first item on my resume.

I’m just curious about that foggy transition period. How do external criticisms become internalized? It’s as if they get injected into your very soul, and somehow you don’t even feel the puncture.

I think “should” is the most toxic word in the English language. It implies that what you’re doing isn’t good enough. It says you have good reason to be stressed out and depressed. It adds a whole host of unwritten items to your to-do list, thus insuring that you’ll never have a genuine feeling of accomplishment. It’s a judgment, and you’ll never be found innocent.

I think the only thing we should do in this world is stop saying should.

compassion

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Throw Me a Bone

I just finished training on the University Drawbridge. That’s two Seattle bridges under my belt. So if you count the three bridges I was qualified on in Jacksonville, Florida and the one in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, that’s 6 bridges I’ve operated, and that includes all three main types of bridge (bascule, lift, and swing). I know of only one other bridgetender who has such varied experience. (If there are any others out there, I’d love to talk to them!) I’m rather proud of myself.

But as I write this, I can’t really show how chuffed I am because I’m in the presence of one of those people who frowns upon kudos, whether self-awarded or not. I’ve heard this called “tall poppy syndrome”. If you stick your head up above the other poppies around you, this type of person will chop it off. I’ve never understood this mindset.

It’s always been my philosophy that you should give credit where credit is due. Not only does that engender positive attitudes all ’round, but also if you allow others to shine, you benefit from the glow yourself. If your team members look good, the whole team looks good by association.

But some people simply cannot throw others a bone. They think it’s more impressive if they hoard them all for themselves. So I’ll do my prideful happy dance when I get home. Until then, I know this is an accomplishment, and no one can take that away from me. Yay!

“…as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” ~Marianne Williamson

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