Yesterday was my 25th birthday! (Live for a quarter of a century…check.)
Trust me when I tell you I absolutely do not take that for granted. I have lost friends at a much younger age and with what you see in the news daily there are many stories that are cut short before they can experience many of life’s milestones. This can, and probably will, be a future topic but I came across something that really made me think on that so let’s sit down and share.
Don’t Stop Until You’re Proud.
I read that on a sign as I was browsing for something to spend my birthday gift card on.
It doesn’t say “Don’t Stop Until You’re Skinny” or “Don’t Stop Until You’re A Millionaire.”
Not until others are proud or satisfied. Not until you get made fun of or turned down. Not until you’re bored or unmotivated; but proud.
I’ve often thought about those friends I mentioned above and the legacies they left. The way we speak about them when we’re together or when their families are remembering them. What would I want to leave with?
Among other things, knowing that I made my family proud. I will measure success in all areas of my life and I will be proud of myself if my family is also proud of me.
My parents, who experienced their own hardships, worked hard to ensure my sisters and I had every opportunity available to us.
Even the ones we didn’t think we wanted. Have you ever washed a ‘dirty’ sheep with your bare hands?
Not only that but they encouraged us to go for every single one of those opportunities.
They taught us to work hard and then work even harder and they encouraged us to play.
They taught us to be a good friend and person then be even better.
They were the biggest supporters, strongest believers and loudest fans.
And when we lost the game, when we didn’t make the team, when we didn’t get that award…they told us every good thing we did, they were proud of us and that we’ll get it next time.
Fast-forward to yesterday opening my cards from them. They wrote several sweet comments but the best were the ones that said I made them proud. That’s important because it’s so easy to feel like you’re failing especially when you have set these high expectations for yourself.
At this stage of my life some of my top expectations are to throw myself into an extremely successful career, work on a healthy diet and strong physique and be the ideal person to talk to in each relationship.
And I have failed at every single one. All three in the last month, to be exact.
But it’s also never been better to learn from and fix those ‘failures’ and make them something to be proud of (anyone else just sing Montgomery Gentry while reading that?). These are just things that happen in life and, great, you’ve experienced that now. NOTHING is the end of the world.
Being proud of yourself can be taken poorly if you’re arrogant and unwilling to humble yourself; true. Being proud of yourself is understanding that you respect yourself enough to feel good and worthy even in the face of something that makes you feel bad and less than. Every time we lost, we had to hear or see why. Understand it. Accept it. Go on.
You will get nowhere if you keep telling yourself that you won’t or can’t. If you don’t have someone telling you ‘I’m proud of you’ then here you go…I am proud of you. I mean that.
I’m proud that you can lose your job and go find something else that will use your talents, talents I might not have, to help people like me and provide for your life.
I’m proud that even if you didn’t go to the gym five times this week, you got there once and you’re taking advantage of your capable body while you still can.
I’m proud that even though you pissed off your sister or were a jerk to your spouse that you took a breather and came back saying ‘I’m sorry, I love you, I’m on your team.’
Don’t just go until I’m proud though; don’t stop until you’re proud.
PS: Thank you to every person who has reached out and to every business who has come my way! If you know someone I can help please let me know.
PPS: My sister is currently studying for her Masters at K-State. She is hosting counseling sessions at no cost for children and adults on a variety of topics including self-respect and leadership. If you would like to schedule a session with her, here is her information:
People, we are currently on Day Three of Daylight Saving Time (yes, take that ‘s’ out of there!) I have been confused by what time it really is, I have read numerous friend’s posts on the funny things they have done and I have asked myself the question many of us do around this time “Why are we doing this?”
For my friends in Hawaii, Arizona and other non-clock-turners let me catch you up…
Daylight Saving Time’s main purpose is to make the most of the daylight hours. While this isn’t fun to lose an hour of sleep when we spring forward, it does make a lot of people happy because now we can do more in the daylight at a later time. If you want more numbers and details like how it conserves energy, survey results and how this correlates with car crashes, read up here.
I asked my husband “Why are we doing this?” and he answered “It all started for people like you.”
Allow me to translate his humor. Drew was referring to the fact that I come from a family of farmers. While this was kind of funny (What do you mean YOU PEOPLE?!) this isn’t the sole reason for DLS and many agricultural professions actually opposed DLS because they preferred more daylight in the morning. Still, it got me thinking…
So many people are fatigued and tired. It’s argued that DLS actually hurts work productivity. It has people asking “Why are we doing this?” come Sunday (and Monday …and Tuesday) morning. It can impact your productivity and, as with any change, provides an opportunity to adjust. Here are three ways I answer ‘Why are we doing this?’ and ‘What am I doing this for?’ every day.
Get Up. Just do it. You know this change is coming up so if you’re able to go to bed earlier and sleep in that weekend, do it. Take the time to adjust.
If you haven’t already placed your alarm clock far away where you have to walk to turn it off, do it.
Every night I make sure my alarm is set, turn on ‘Do Not Disturb’ and charge my phone on the bathroom counter. It’s not fun when that early morning alarm goes off but once I’m out of bed, I might as well get dressed in those clothes I laid out.
Just keep moving no matter how unmotivated you are. You will be more upset come 3 p.m. and you have tons to do than you would be if you’ve been getting it done since 6 a.m.
There’s always a bright side. This should be your mindset every moment of every day but take this literally. It is all about your mindset.
Sunsets are pretty but I prefer sunrises. It is so much nicer to wake up to sun than it is to a dark, cold morning.
Each morning I walk my dog before working out and even when it’s cold, it wakes me up.If you were coming home from work in the dark, now you’re coming home in the sunshine.
I heard the kids next door playing basketball outside yesterday and if you’re familiar with the PNW, that’s a miracle in itself. Go do something fun with your time.
Prioritize. I am a Type A personality which means I make lists about lists I should make. I hold firm to getting things done ahead or on time, I must be rigidly organized and I have this underlying competitiveness about weird things (EX: When a commercial comes on TV I see how much I can get done before the show comes back on. Like putting away dishes, folding laundry, etc….just try it.) Yes, this has caused some problems with the impatience it brings on but it has also been a consistent strength for my work ethic and achievements. This can be as simple or as detailed as you’d like. Maybe you’ve got it figured out or maybe you don’t even know where to start.
Here are some ways I hold myself accountable and stay on track every day:
I use a planner and pen because it makes sense for me. You might prefer your phone. I write out everything I have for that day and carry over anything that didn’t get done yesterday. When a box is full, I look at the rest of the week and put remaining tasks in an emptier box. Here is what I have for Tuesday, March 13.
Go through dog closet and cleaning closet for donations (truck comes by tomorrow so this is important today but not the end of the world.)
Walk, 15 min HIIT and upper body workout
Blog post (I will be posting every Tuesday!)
Finish portfolio & get prices lined up
Discovery call with potential client
Do nails after supper
Now I prioritize those tasks by writing a number and circling it to the left. I will go in that order for the rest of the day, inserting time if I can and when I am done I scribble it out of existence. Ahhhhh.
I stay flexible for life to happen. For example, the call with a potential client didn’t come up until 9 a.m. I scheduled time with her at 11 a.m. and factored this in to a top priority. So now my list looks like this:
Discovery call with potential client
Finish portfolio & get prices lined up
15 min HIIT and upper body workout
Go through dog closet and cleaning closet for donations.
Cook supper (in my mind’s timeline, I don’t write it)
When they day is done I put a large X through it. If there is anything left undone I will move it to the next day.
Do I realize this won’t be for everyone? OF COURSE. There are people with office jobs, people with kids and their schedules, people who get stressed by an ordered timeline and prefer to just deal with whatever comes up…I get it.
This is something that works for me and if you’re feeling a change coming on like I often do, I hope you will at least give one of these a try. It takes 21 days to form a habit. If you saw at least one new idea I challenge you to commit yourself to trying that out for 7 days. No excuses. After that you can toss it, you can adjust it or you can expand on it. When in doubt, ask yourself “Why am I doing this?” The answer will either drive you or it will check your priorities.
Please tell me which of these new tips you’re going to try out and share any ideas on how you stay productive. I love reading your comments.
Hey, I’m Marin! I’m named after a county in California but I was born and raised in a small Kansas town. As in we still don’t have stoplights and I went to school in a cornfield, y’all. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Journalism & Mass Communications (Focus in Public Relations) from the greatest school on Earth (Kansas State University) where I met my husband.
His career as an Army officer takes us across the country. We have a love for adventuring new places, hiking the most beautiful trails and searching for a new favorite beer all while loving on our Iranian rescue pup, Argo.
There are several challenges as a Military Wife but finding and maintaining a career is toward the top of the list. After some jobs left me feeling unfulfilled, underutilized, under-paid, and held back, I finally felt it’s time to fearlessly pursue a creative, fulfilling career. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for?
I am forever grateful that I’ve been consistently working my entire life. The variety of jobs I’ve held have taught me lessons to keep me humbled and well-rounded, allowing me to better serve my future clients and career. I’ve had several unique opportunities and experiences to apply to my work and have been encouraged for my creative ideas, innovative promotion strategy and eye for design. Paired with those skills, I have implemented public relations, advertising, marketing, communications, customer service and sales to provide a fresh eye and challenging approach to business.
I’m inspired by the thought of bringing you a collaborative marketing approach from your most enthusiastic local entrepreneurs. People I have worked with and trust from multiple industries. I believe in authenticity, I value transparency, I accept feedback and I expect a growth mindset from those I partner with. I strongly believe you can have fun while being professional. I believe you can be modern and rustic at the same time. I believe sandwiches should be hot, drinks should be cold and notes should be handwritten. I believe you should stand firm in your beliefs with an open mind.