Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Now Mindset

So I just got back from the mall and I'm exhausted. It's sad how tiring trips to the mall have become. In high school, I would die to take trips to the mall. I could walk in and out of stores for hours. Not so much anymore. The goal of the trip was to return dresses and headbands I ended up not wearing for Cody's friends wedding. Of course...that's not all that ended up happening. I was with my mom, so we ended up having many other things on the agenda. Let's just say the closer we got to our car, the more I wanted to leave.

I was feeling pretty funky on the way home. I couldn't tell if it was because I was tired, hungry, or simply unhappy. All I could think about what how nice it was when I had my apartment in Irvine during school. Now, let me just mention...I love my family to pieces and I'm so blessed that my parents are letting me live at home while I go to school and have my job...but there are times when I just wish I could be on my own! These feelings come and go a lot. Obviously, I'm not the only person that has moved home from college. So many other people (including some of my friends) have done that or will be doing that. That is one reason why I'm writing this. I'm certain the feelings I have about not being able to afford an apartment (or simply just wishing I was doing something different) are experienced by so many other people! Maybe even you!

I've posted many link before about one of my favorite blogs, zenhabits. I was just looking at the archives for July and Leo, the man who makes all the posts, wrote this awesome entry about how to be happy anytime. I don't think this could have come at a better time.

This is a little bit of what he says,

"I’ve notice that in the past, like many people, I was always wishing I was doing something different, thinking about what I would do in the future, making plans for my life to come, reading (with jealousy) about cool things other people were doing.

It’s a fool’s game.

Many of us do this, but if you get into the mindset of thinking about what you *could* be doing, you’ll never be happy doing what you actually *are* doing. You’ll compare what you’re doing with what other people (on Facebook and Twitter, perhaps?) are doing. You’ll wish your life were better. You’ll never be satisfied, because there’s *always* something better to do."

In my case, that's TOTALLY true! He read my mind in all that he said. I love what he said about Facebook. Not going to lie, there was a time a few weeks ago where I took a vacation from Facebook because it was creating unnecessary stress (looking at what everyone else was doing) when I needed to be doing homework and other things that were a part of MY life. It was so freeing. I always have to tell myself..."Diana, you are making choices that are good for you." Like taking a part time job as an aide and going back to school.....that was a choice I made. There's no way I'd be able to live on my own with those choices. Unless I wanted to get myself into debt (no thank you). After graduation, I COULD have gone on to find a full time job, and then I could have been able to continue living on my own. However, none of the FT jobs I was looking at were jobs that could lead be to where I eventually wanted to be. After much thinking about what my passions were and what environments I worked best, I figured going back to school for Special Education and being an aide to get experience was the best decision. One of the consequences that came with that decision was that I had to move back home.

So...what would Leo's wisdom be if I told him how I've been experiencing random feelings of unsatisfaction?

"....I’ve adopted the mindset that whatever I’m doing right now is perfect. If I’m writing a post, that’s amazing. If I’m reading blog posts on the Internet, that’s interesting. If I’m doing nothing but hanging out with my family, that’s incredible. If I’m walking outside, enjoying the fresh air, that’s beautiful"

That there is "the now mindset". It sounds so perfect and easy to do, doesn't it? We all make choices and all choices have their pros and cons. It can be so easy to ruminate over the cons of one's decisions, when all one has to do it look at the reason for their decision in the first place. Usually you make the choice that will be more beneficial in the long run. You see for me, I am CHOOSING to take a longer time in school, so I can work another year at the elementary school. I could race through school and finish a year earlier, but then I'll have to leave all the amazing teachers and children at work. I'd miss them so much! Plus, I really think the extra year of experience will be a benefit for me once I finish school. Anyways, sometimes I pretty bummed about being in school much longer than other people in my program...because I'm choosing to work for another year. I just need to keep thinking of WHY I made that decision. No one made that decision for me. Just like Leo did, I need to adopt a mindset that everything I'm doing is perfect!

So from this point on, I'm going to try my hardest ever to live in the "now" and really be thankful and savor each moment....even studying *gah* If you feel like you've ever felt the same as me, I suggest you try doing it too! Let's start "The Now Mindset" movement.

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