I’m officially on spring break! *happy dance* It’s pretty liberating to turn the alarm clock off on a weekday morning and get out of bed when I’m ready.
It’s so different to see what my community looks like when most people are at work or school. Running errands is a lot less stressful – there’s no traffic and stores are practically empty. Because I’m either at home or out and about, I can see as much sunshine as my little heart desires.
My goal for this time off is to work on all aspects of my health. I’ve got meals prepped and I’m still planning to go to the gym as per usual. But now, I finally have some time to focus on what’s going on in my head.
If I could describe my mind on a typical day, it’s like a game of Tetris. The day starts off with knocking out some easy tasks: running copies, planning my schedule, or sending mail. By 10:00, things are moving fast. The urgent emails, reports, traveling, and phone calls start to stack up and I’m constantly trying to shift and prioritize them. At first, I feel really accomplished getting all this stuff done, but it gets harder to manage as the day wears on. As soon as I finish one task, there are three more to do. They continue to pile up and the game ends at about 3:45.
By this time, my mental energy is spent. I either drink something caffeinated so I can trudge to the gym or go home and crash.
Later in the evening, I spend time in my journal or on the computer to relax. Phone calls are usually answered with a text (hey, after talking to people for seven hours a day, I gotta decompress. #teamintrovert). Sometimes work follows me home and worry does too. “How many deadlines do I have this week? Will I be able to catch up on all this work? Am I doing enough for my students?” I have to quell these thoughts because once they start, they’re difficult to stop (I’ve always been a worrier, but I’m learning that some things are out of my control). This routine continues until the weekend when I can catch up on rest.
When I’m constantly thinking about my next move, it leaves little time for gratitude and appreciating everything that is going well. Happiness, to some extent, is a choice and I’m doing my best to work on it daily. As I recharge, I’m devoting this week to finding my happy.
While I was looking for some self-development resources on Pinterest, I came across Moorea Seal’s 52 Lists for Happiness. I went to Barnes and Noble to check it out after reading positive reviews. As a list lover, it was an easy sell.
There are four sections to guide your journaling and they build on one another:
Each section has 13 unique prompts. At the end of each list, there are little nuggets of wisdom and ways to become intentional about your happiness practice.
The prompts are simple, but encourage you to think deeply. As you write, you see how your thoughts, habits, choices, and loved ones can shape your life for the better. Fill out a list each week and in a year’s time, you’ll have a book full of memories and plans to keep you on your happiness journey.
Oh, and did I mention that the photography in this journal is absolutely stunning? The images are calming and even help to put me in the frame of mind for writing.
Week one is done and I’m really hopeful about how 52 Lists can help with my overall wellness. Although I’m eager to dive in, this journal is more of a project that needs time to come full circle. I’ll update on this journal quarterly. If you’re interested, you can find it at Barnes and Noble, Target (online) and Amazon.
I’d love to know what you do to bring positivity and joy to your life. Share some recommendations!