The feedback I receive from my readers is so thoughtful and inspiring.
Today I am turning this space over to them so you can benefit from their wisdom and experience too.
On the value of being a beginner:
I enjoy learning various things and so I have had to get comfortable with the awkward feeling of being a beginner. It seems to me that accepting one’s status as a beginner and working through the learning process over time is a requirement to improving one’s skills in any subject and gaining expertise. It is ironic that if one can’t bear to be a humble beginner and stick with the process, then one will forever remain the exact unskilled beginner that one is ashamed to be!
(In response to 6 Life Lessons I Learned From My Fiddle)
On using the 3 B’s (bag it, barter it, better it) in daily life:
I've been using the 3 B's since I’ve had children. They have definitely become an essential part of my parental survival kit once my two older sons started playing club soccer and needed to get to practices outside of our local area.
Bag it: One of my favorites. Less is more!
Since there are a zillion things on my daily to-do list, I am always evaluating tasks to figure out what REALLY needs to get done while maintaining a healthy balance in life.
Bag it examples:
Scaling back on the number of holiday cards I send
Letting the dishes sit until the morning so I can help my kids study for their exams after dinner
Saying "I've done enough for today" and curling up with a good book
Barter it examples:
Carpools! An efficient and hassle-free carpool is priceless to a busy mom
My husband and I barter practically every weekend to get to activities vs. chores vs. fun things (example: If you take the trash to the dump on your way to son's game at the high school, I'll do laundry and have lunch ready when you get home, then we'll work on the lawn together so we can both go for a bike ride after)
Better it: this is one of my favorite B's, as I love to make everything I do as much fun as possible.
Better it examples:
When I’m just starting my grocery shopping at 9pm, I get a chocolate chip muffin for breakfast tomorrow
When there is a daunting pile of dishes to wash, I put on my kitchen TV and find Big Bang Theory, Seinfeld or other mindless comedy show
When I get back from vacation with 7 days’ worth of laundry, I sort the laundry so that it's the most efficient for washing and drying. And everyone helps!
When I’m doing errands with 10 stops to make, I gather my Sirius satellite receiver, a water bottle to stay hydrated and an energy bar to keep me fueled, plan my route, and head out on my mission
I also invented other B's – batch it, brainstorm it, book it, begin it, balance it and bike it.
Batch it - group things together
Let the library books accumulate the $.20 fine because I won't be driving by the library (which is 20 minutes out of my way) for another 3 days when it'll be right on the way to my dentist appointment
It's my turn to carpool to soccer practice an hour away, so I bring a book I've been trying to find time to read.
Brainstorm it – I enlist others to help come up with a solution.
Book it – When there is something I really want to do, I get the calendar out, find a good date and schedule it IN INK! Then stick to it. It becomes the priority for that day.
Begin it – Sometimes the hardest part is starting a task. I figure out one small thing that I can do today to get things moving.
Balance it – No one can work all the time. I need downtime and fun time in my life.
Bike it – I am an avid cyclist. When riding, not only do I exercise but I think about anyone and anything I need to. Sometimes I think the thinking part of my rides are better for me than the exercise! Plus it gets me out into nature and gives me uninterrupted time without electronic interruptions.
Using all of the B's has helped me become more organized, efficient, balanced and happy. I get a ton done most days, and when I don't, I understand why, and that's fine, too. For the most part, I know where I've been, where I'm going and how I'm going to get there in life, which is good enough for me.
(In response to The Art Of Enjoying The Holidays (for the rest of us) In Two Steps)
On finding her wedding dress:
Once I figured out how I wanted to feel (comfortable, elegant, celebratory) it changed the whole dress shopping experience, and put me in the most perfect dress for me! My dress was sparkly which felt very celebratory, it was long with a side slit which gave me the feeling of elegance, and the fabric had some give in it which made it extremely comfortable to be in and move in. I felt exactly the way I wanted to feel on my wedding day!
(In response to Three Words (Your GPS For Happiness))