Discovering contentment during difficult times is a topic of discussion you will find in many places right now as the stay-home measures linger on across the country. So, I want to give you a challenge to think about.
Let me begin with a disclaimer. I know for those who have lost loved ones during the pandemic…who have lost income during the shutdowns…this is beyond a difficult time. You are not dealing with contentment issues, but survival and true grief and I understand it. Of course, you are allowed to be upset , sad, and discouraged. We have friends who are without income and know medical workers who are tired, weary and sometimes fearful.
Today’s post is for the ones whose lives have been “interrupted” and are a bit disgruntled over it. Martha Washington said, “The greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.”
So often contentment is a mindset, a choice, or a changing of perspective. Let me ask you to look at the first picture of my coffee on the patio. What comes to mind? Do you think…Ah, morning coffee on the patio, how nice? Or do you look beyond it and think Pam really needs a gardener! That dirt is so ugly! Do you focus on the negative or on the positive? There are so many negatives associated with this pandemic that it is easy to get caught in a mental trap with them encircling us like snakes.
Of course, I am missing so many parts of my life and experiences before this all began. However, I am choosing to love the blessings in the interruptions as well. For example, previously, I spent at least 1-2 hours a day in heavy traffic back and forth to work. To have that time to decide how I will spend it, is glorious!
A CONTENTMENT CHALLENGE
What I want to challenge you with today, is to join me and find just five things to be contented about in your life right now…today! I am going to tell you my five things, and when you are ready to comment, then share with us your five things! Remember, this is about perspective. Can you look at parts of your life that make you discontented and disgruntled and find blessings in those parts as well? Give it a try….change the way you think.
- Flowers on my desk – Since coming home to work, I have enjoyed my desk at home with its window and fresh flowers! It is not fancy by any means, but I really like facing the outdoors I can see through the shutters and love having fresh flowers to greet me each morning. Behind me is some clutter, and pictures which STILL need to be hung, but I am facing the positive and not focusing on what makes the office…less perfect? I am inspired here, so while I ,like all bloggers, am experiencing loss of revenues, I am attempting to use this time to discover new ways of going forward. One day at a time…is the only way to do this.
2. Using the Stairs for Workout – When I first arrived home, I saw the stairs as my nemesis! I knew I would be going up and down and up and down and up and down often every day. My office is upstairs. At the end of last week, I decided to turn them from enemy to friend. I made a declaration to Mr. B that every time I went up and down the stairs I would do it with a weight…I started with 10 pounds…two five pound weights on each side. I think the balancing of weights is the safest way to do this. But, you need to stand up straight and carry them like you would with a traditional farmer’s carry. I am now using this kettle bell, but I need to buy a second one so I can balance the weight. Let me tell you…the difference I feel in my hips and leg strength is amazing after just one week. Now the stairs are my helper and not an enemy!
3. Appreciating the beauty of peace – A co-worker shared this photo of the San Antonio Riverwalk last week. This is a time when we would traditionally have seen it packed with tourists celebrating Fiesta, but right now, like so many other places, it is quite. Instead of focusing on how sad it is to see it this way, I choose to focus on the beauty of the peace and the quite. It will return to activity soon, but moments captured like this are so lovely. It brings me peace to look at it.
4. Spring flowers are blooming – I walked out of the house last weekend and the lantana in our front was blooming summer sun yellow! Meet Malachi, my garden bird. My local grandchildren often greet Malachi when they come over! He is a member of the family. I cannot think of a spring in years that I have enjoyed so much, because I took time to notice. So often, my life is rush, rush, rush.
5. LOVE this gentle exfoliate for the shower – when I went to purchase a body scrub a few months ago, I grumbled just a little that at the time I did not have a more expensive one in the budget. But I thought I would give this one a try…well, I LOVE it and am on the second jar. The aroma is awesome…especially in the shower and my skin feels great afterwards. Highly recommend and have in the slideshow below. Before this time, I was in and out of the shower in lightening speed…trying to beat traffic to the office in the morning. Now, I am actually enjoying shower time and great products have played a role…especially when they smell so good.
OK, there you have it. Five reasons I am contented today…now how about you? Focus on what you are blessed to have…and not what you don’t.
“At some point, you gotta let go, and sit still, and allow contentment to come to you.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
Why is this an I Matter post? Because your personal contentment, and joy for life matters to your mental health! Contentment is a gift from God that He wants to give all of us. Ask Him for it today. and choose to change your perspective.
Remember to enter the Lilla Rose Hair Accessory Giveaway, HERE. The winner will be announced on Friday. And remember, to enjoy the Fabulous Find Slideshow below…today with beauty products to help us feel….contented!
Remember, in our social distancing world, your smile is the way you send hugs!
KEEP SMILING and hugging!
By Pamela Lutrell