|Moving Day! (Luckily, not mine.)|
My father was mad at me one morning--actually, the day after my graduation!--for not waking up as early as he thought I should. I actually had laid out plans for myself that did not include waking up early at all. Somehow, he believed his plans should trump mine. I later heard my mother come to my defense. My father replied: "I want her to be perfect." No pressure, right? Well, that's not going to happen. I've accepted that I'll never be perfect and I won't always get things right on the first try. However, this is no excuse to not still strive for excellence in all that I do.
So I'm working on some things. My parents have inspired me to work harder and smarter. Maybe some of the areas needing improvement in my life might inspire some of you. Here goes:
Waking up each day like it's on purpose. That's actually a saying of my father's. Go figure. Some days, I have no intention of being productive whatsoever. Despite no longer being in school, I still have quite a lot going on, so there isn't even a moment to waste. From here forth, I'm aiming for one big accomplishment each day, whether Monday or Saturday.
I also need to make up my bed once I finally decide to get out of it. My roommate (and I guess my mom) are my inspiration. She (roommate) makes hers up every day before work in all its royal pillowness. This is a sign of really having your life together. (And boy, does she!) But me? Not so much. I mean my life is pretty together, but the making the bed thing is just more challenging than you might imagine. Maybe it's because I always hit snooze on my alarm and get up later than I should and then I'm running late? Mmm...nah.
Reading daily. And not just Buzzfeed articles and tweets--entertaining as they may be--but actual books and novels. (There's a difference between the two.) You wouldn't believe how many books there are on my To Read list and yet still there they are. I often find myself listening to the same old songs on my iPhone or watching garbage TV (or procrastinating on other important tasks) when I could be knocking some pages out of the books on my list. Being a member of a book club helps, but I want to take it a step further. So in addition to the book being read by my club, I am henceforth challenging myself to read a second book each month. What's on my reading list?
- The Reason for God by Tim Keller (Just started! Good so far.)
- What I Know For Sure by Oprah
- Gifted Hands by Ben Carson
- The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (Upcoming book club book.)
- God's Beauty and the Beast by H. Lynn Hiles
Saving more. I have my direct deposit set up so that 90% of my earnings is put into my checking account and 10% is deposited into my savings. Having it set up automatically helps a great deal. That way, I can't spend what I don't see. But I can see my savings stacking up whenever I muster the courage to check my online banking account. I should also note that not planning ahead and buying groceries has contributed to my lack of saving as much as I could/should in the past. And that I never say no to weekend brunch or catching up over wine, but that's neither here nor there.
Regular exercise. While I'd love to believe climbing the stairs to my fifth-floor walk up counts, it doesn't. "They" say you need at least 30 minutes of cardio each day so I'm challenging myself to just that. I joined a recreation center and am considering signing up for ClassPass to make working out fun. Or maybe I'll take up running. I ran my first 5k earlier this month and didn't die! Baby steps.
Calling my family members more. We all know how short life is but we don't really live like it. We don't seize every opportunity or say I love you enough so it is my constant goal to do just that. Losing both my grandmother and my uncle last year has made that all the more clear. For some reason, I have gotten really bad at returning phone calls. I think it's because I always want to budget enough time to have a good conversation but then I forget. I can't honestly say that I return or initiate as many calls as I should but there are so many people I know and love that I need to communicate with more often so I'm challenging myself to do better.
Being a servant. I believe you should always seize opportunities to serve, whether in an official volunteer capacity or simply to help the people in your life. What's beautiful is that no act of service is too small. This weekend, I joined a few girlfriends in helping another move into a new apartment. When she first asked me to help out, I figured it was a no-brainer. It wasn't until I got there that it clicked that manual labor was involved. It was quite the workout! But I'm glad I was in a position to lend a helping hand, so I want to actively seek out opportunities to serve more.
Living a life that's pleasing to God. I reblogged an article from NORingNOSheets a few months ago, in which she detailed how she's living life as a single Christian woman. I remember giving my life to Christ when I was 11 but I didn't really begin to get to know Him until last year. I know that He has plans for my life and all I need to do is cling more closely to Him to find and fulfill my purpose here on earth. This includes reading my Bible more and spending more time in His presence. One day, I want the Lord to look at me and say, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."
So there it is! I know it seems like a lot to work on, but each day is a new opportunity to do and be better.