Thursday, September 13, 2012

Picture of the Week - 9/13/2012

Changing "Have to" to "Get to"
I've been thinking about this idea of changing my mindset from one of "Have to" to one of "Get to" for a host of reasons this week. I could share the thought process, but it's pretty boring. It includes some stuff as minute as Facebook posts about new babies and new houses and general whining to some stuff as important as the 11th anniversary of a day we will all remember for the rest of our lives. It's pretty hard to reflect on what I was doing (and thinking) on Sept 11, 2001 without realizing how very blessed I am today. And while I would never dream of trying to rationalize those terrible events, I will try to take some lessons from them in the hopes of personal growth.
We have had a couple of hiccups in our hectic schedules the last week. Nothing earth-shattering! An extra night at the football field. A couple of sick kids. A need to miss watching Spencer play in a game in order to take care of his little brothers. It's pretty safe to say that our schedule right now (mine and Bob's) includes very little of the stuff that we want to be doing and a bunch of stuff that we have to do.
And there it is!

I could allow myself to go down a path of feeling sorry for myself and complaining about how busy we are every day. I could share this with anyone who would listen in hopes of getting some kind of sympathy. I could wake up every morning with a sense of dread for the daily hoops we will have to jump through to keep the household running. But none of those things will accomplish anything. And they are SUPER counter-productive for me.

So I'm trying to swap the phrase "have to" with the phrase "get to" and it's pretty amazing how that simple little switch changes my mindset. Try it!

·         I don't "have to" stay home with Zane and Beck while Bob takes Spencer to practice. I "get to" cuddle with my babies and take care of their needs and read them stories and put them to bed. There will be more football practices, there will never be another day exactly like this one with my little boys.
·         I don't "have to" stay up late finishing some quilting homework for a class that Berber and I have crammed into this jam-packed fall schedule. I "get to" spend some time re-igniting a hobby that I've let go dormant for too long.
·         I don't "have to" get up before the sun to get to work. I "get to" leave early for a job that allows me to provide a very nice life for my family while also giving me the opportunity to head home in the afternoons in time to enjoy all our evening activities.
·         I don't "have to" stress out about planning a birthday party for a soon-to-be 3-year-old. I "get to" watch a little boy who is starting to understand what it means to be the birthday boy get SO excited for his upcoming big day.
·         I don't “have to” sit in traffic on the way to and from work every day. I "get to" spend some time alone, in a relatively nice vehicle while decompressing from my day and gearing up for my real job - the one that doesn't start until I get home!  And more often than not, I get to catch up with my mom while driving. I can think of worse ways to spend 45-75 minutes a day.
·         I don't "have to" grocery shop and meal plan and cook dinners. I "get to" take care of the nutritional needs of my family. (This one is a bit of a stretch, but when I think about it this way it somehow seems like less of a chore and more of a privilege.)
·         I don't "have to" deal with a schedule as crazy as ours is right now. The truth is, we are fortunate enough that I "get to" let my boys experience all these extra things without worrying about the expense or the schedule or the added chaos. The reality of our crazy life right now is that it's our doing and we wouldn't be doing all this stuff if we couldn't handle it.  We wouldn’t do it ff we didn't think it was important and valuable. I "get to" provide these full and rich experiences for the boys and I am blessed to be able to do so. It's easy to forget that part!

The only thing I haven't really been able to justify is the time I have to spend away from Bob. We do way more divide and conquer than I'd like. I can't figure out how to spin that in a way that makes it seem like a benefit. I miss him!  But I suppose we can dream about the days (some 16-18 years from now???) that we will have less on our plates and we can spend more time together. Dreams are good!

So that's my mindset for this week. It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes by Carlos Castaneda "We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same."
Here's to HAPPY!

No comments:

Post a Comment