A yoga instructor read a quote from a book about rising to whatever Challenge that life puts in front of us, that we can choose to rise and try to meet them and do our best or we can choose not to, but in any case the choice is ours. Know this: there will always be another challenge and it may be bigger or smaller, but challenges are part of life. And you can face them.
I heard this wonderful quote and thought: a good day is not one without challenge, but one in which I accept the challenges and understand my role in meeting them, or not. I thought about The Climb, Miley Cyrus’ song about how there will always be another mountain to move, and I realize my little Pearls are so helpful to me that they come at me in other forms or language. The point for me is that whether I am climbing, trying to move mountains, or in the process of trying to get all my work done, my workouts in, and still being a good mom and wife and sister and daughter and boss and friend, no matter what I do I will have a sense of not doing it all as well as I’d like, and never getting “through” it all by the time I lay my head on the pillow.
My pearl: Enjoy the climb. Life is a process. You’re never “done” and that’s okay. I can’t be upset about being too busy, or challenged by the day-to-day events of my life. I I have to be okay with this perpetually busy state, a long “To-Do” list, and not get overwhelmed. But sometimes I do get overwhelmed. I nearly panic at times about “did I forget something?” did I let someone down? Did I get it done? Did I do it well? And if so, what about tomorrow? Will I tackle all that as well?
Sometimes I have to tell myself to chill, or more to the point, to be grateful that I have such a full schedule. This is “good stress,” since in today’s economy it’s a blessing to be busy, to be engaged. I want to be helpful to others, and also be the best person I can be, and that means having a “To Do” list that is rarely done. But sometimes I think: I need to learn to meditate and clear my brain, to reboot and just start fresh. (Another to do!) I know that I will always seek out the next challenge and then when it’s in front of me I have to remember: don’t complain, since you put yourself there in the first place.
So I do accept the Challenges, the Climb, and I’m here to remind you: don’t fret if you feel overwhelmed or stressed out at times. It’s normal. It’s life. It’s a blessing. Embrace it. Try to even enjoy it. And remember to breathe, smile, and have fun.
Pearls of Wisdom
A pearl is a little takeaway piece of wisdom, advice or truth that once you know it, becomes engrained in your way of thinking (like a pearl grows from a grain of sand in the oyster’s inner softness) and you get to carry it with you after you leave the tidy room. Pearls can come from anywhere: a lyric, a line of poetry, a book — even your grandmother’s favorite saying.
One of Catherine’s favorite pearls is: Wherever you go, there you are. In other words, you can’t get away from your troubles, so you may as well work through them. (This is why they call it baggage.)
One of Lucy’s favorite song lyrics that resonates is from The Climb:
There’s always gonna be another mountain, I’m always going to want to make it move. Always gonna be an uphill battle, sometimes I’m gonna have to loose... It ain’t about how fast I get there. Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side. It’s the climb.
If you know me, you know I am happiest when trying to move mountains, but often I bite off more than I can chew and then I risk messing up one or more of my rooms. I know I should spend more time with my kids, be a better wife, boss, friend, mother or daughter. That song, which I first heard while out on a long run, testing my body after months of an injury that had kept me sidelined, made me start to tear up. I felt Miley Cyrus was singing to me, about pushing forward and facing up to failure, and not being afraid to risk it all, even if you sometimes you fail. Not trying is the only true failure, since you never know what you can do until your try.
Resilience, the ability to bounce back, is a trait you need for this striving and thriving, since I know I’ll fall on my face at times, and I tell myself the only important thing is how you recover. So when things seem overwhelming I try to remind myself the true test of character isn’t how you act when things go right, but how you act when things get tough or you mess up. The process, and being cheerful or positive, is what makes you happy in the moment and over the course of your life. Not the end result but the here and now. The climb!
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