Brownness

Beginnings

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I love the smell of a first monday of a new year. So much possibility hangs in the air. I can’t wait to get up and get to the things I want to do to make a better version of myself. Yet I also have to remind myself that I am not in this journey alone, and while some days that makes me impatient, I also know that I need the buy-in from the ones affected by my decisions.

So, in a sense, it is also a beginning of communication, of sharing what’s on my mind. Too often, I rush ahead, and I assume that people around me know of my destination just by seeing my direction, but it can be isolating. It can also be a bit too focused on my needs and wants rather than taking into consideration of how others will handle my decisions.

This is not to say I have to change myself, but really I have to change how I share what’s coming up for me. I have to show what inspires me, why I am driven to do certain things over and over, and my struggles with long overdue tasks and goals.

It’s not just a beginning of a new year, but a chance to do things differently or afresh. A beginning for relationships, for work, for hobbies, for goals, for really anything that matters to me. And so I start, and I hope you do.

Happy Monday!

Brownness

2021

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With this interesting year almost over, I wonder what the new year will bring. More uncertainty for sure, but also opportunities to grow. It’s not easy being positive in the face of the pandemic and constant change. Some days, it feels just simpler to give in, to not wake up, to drink too much, overeat, sleep late, binge watch. It has its charms, but day after day it gets old.

As I replace it with new ventures, marketing, ideas, partnerships, I see forks in the road previously hidden. As I push myself in my workouts, surround myself with people who believe in me, push me to be a better version of myself, ask me difficult questions, I know that each year is the same just with different facts.

I can believe the story of “woe is me” pandemic 2020, or I can just see it as for what it is, another hiccup in another year and move on to 2021. I can dwell on what didn’t materialize, what didn’t grow, what failed, what prevented me from success or I can use as seeds to keep growing, to keep learning, to keep being in service, to own my destiny and barrel into 2021 with the full force of me.

Happy Monday. What will you do different in 2021?

Brownness

As December draws to a close, I know I need to review all my goals and aspirations for 2020. As much a joke as that may appear, I still managed to hit a lot more milestones than I imagined during a pandemic. It exhausts me to even the says the words Pandemic and 2020 and especially Covid-19. Yet, when I think about it, those words changed my life in an unexpected yet meaningful.

I began the year with a different mindset, and now I end it having learned so much more about myself and others. And then it dawns on me that I learn something new and different every year.If I just put away those words as somehow defining my year, I managed to get to some goals and not others. The same as the year before.

Each year, I set up ambitious goals, but I never get to be 100% but that’s okay because the point isn’t to be perfect but to keep moving forwards. Words have energy. and if I choose to use them negatively, I do myself and others a disservice. Words matter. Even though obvious now, it took me the entire year to change my attitude about them.

Happy Monday!

Brownness

Think Like A Monk

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This past weekend. I got the chance to begin my non-fiction reading for December. Last year, I decided to stop buying books altogether to a) reduce clutter b) become more intentional about what I read and c) cut down on discretionary spending. I have re-discovered the library and each month I have checked 1-2 books a month. The great thing is that it adds a bit of a time pressure to finish reading since the books need to be returned, and it’s allowed me to explore books that I normally wouldn’t partake in.

This month I got lucky and got to check Think Like A Monk by Jay Shetty. I’d vaguely heard his name, but I didn’t know much more. I am 80 pages in, and already the book has given me pause, forced me to reflect, and excitedly share with anyone who will listen about my “new” find. As I get through each chapter, I realize that I have spent so much of my life with internal self-that does not always serve me. I learned that Fear is something I should strive for as long it forces me to keep moving forward, to keep growing. If I allow it to paralyze me, or make me run away, or worse, bury it.

I look forward to applying all the lessons from this book, and am content in my choice of no clutter by not buying and it hits me that small changes in my habits this year have begun to pay off bigger dividends than I intended. And that is just like life. Small steps that lead to big changes as long as the small steps are pushing one forward.

Happy Monday

Brownness

A Fine Balance

Balance is not something you find, but something you create- Jana Kingsford

As the week begins, it is not without a bit of excitement that I dive into work, working out, and hanging out with loved ones. When these things are in harmony, I feel there is not much that stands in my way. But when they are not (which is often), I lose my focus, and pay attention to smaller things that shouldn’t matter in the long run.

It’s not easy to be in harmony all the time, but it also doesn’t mean I stop trying. I got this message as I continue to go to Crossfit regularly and now make sure I make it harder on myself. There are a lot of days that I fail, or I am last or I don’t get near enough reps that my friends do, but its the constant reminder to myself that this is about me.

It’s hard not to make life about others. To get them to be a certain way, to treat you gentler, to be kinder, to be more giving, to be so many things out of my control. It’s hard to let go of that habit of wanting to fix things and people. It’s not easy to learn to just listen, and make the other person feel heard. To keep my mouth shut, and just be present. To seek out loved ones, and just be there, to spend time, to break bread together, to get counsel. To not take my career for granted, to keep learning, to keep trying, to be in service.

So I keep working towards a fine balance. I don’t always succeed, but when I do, the effects are glorious.

Happy Monday!

Brownness

A Strange Journey

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This year has brought me strange gifts. From appreciating loved ones, to falling in love with working out in a different way to establishing closer friendships with people who a few years ago were just familiar faces.

I am grateful for it all. Even the pain, the sadness, the frustration, and most of all, the rejection. But not in the way you might read this. I rejected being content. I rejected doing what’s comfortable. I rejected avoiding tough conversations. I rejected focusing on being right. I rejected the stories/excuses/games I played and did the harder thing.

It can be lonely sometimes, but then I remember that I am surrounded by so many who are invested in my success, happiness and love that all I have to do is open my mouth.

And that has been the strangest journey of all. To seek support. To express my fears, and frustrations. But the fear has subsided as each time I opened up people showed up, they heard me.

And so I plan on continuing this strange journey.