This article originally appeared on No Sidebar.
This past November as I was driving home, I came to a familiar intersection where a homeless woman stood with a sign asking for help. I’d seen her numerous times before, but had always stopped short of giving. On this instance, I reached into my wallet and gave her my spare change, mostly pennies, amounting to no more than 15 cents.
As I handed it to her and double checked my car’s various compartments, I apologized that I didn’t have more to give. Instead of disappointment or agitation, she expressed deepfelt gratitude, and thanked me profusely. It didn’t matter whether it was a few pennies or a few dollars, she said. Every little bit helped.
As the first month of the new year nears its end, I find myself thinking about its passage and how I’ve spent it. I think about whom I’ve seen or reached out to and where I’ve been. In some ways, I’ve fallen short of my self-expectations, and in others, I’ve surprised myself with what I’ve been able to accomplish in a few short weeks, sometimes in a single day.
Quality over quantity
I’ve always favored quality over quantity: in my relationships, in what I consume, and in nearly everything I set out to do. But one area that remains a challenge is how I spend my time. Where structure fails, distraction takes root; along with idleness and envy, impatience and anticipation.
If we spent our free time reading a few chapters of a new book or going for a run, instead of being at the mercy of each new notification or an excessive list of to-dos, would we feel like our days belonged to us again?
Happy 2019! It’s a new year, ripe with potential to become better versions of ourselves and create the lives that we desire. What’s on your 2019 to-do list? Whether you made a dozen resolutions or none at all, it’s never too late (or too early) to start soaking in your own goodness, and letting in some extra light.
That’s why I created The Little Book of Self-Love, and I’m so excited to share it with you! It’s your ultimate guide to treating yourself with tenderness and kindness, and watching the ripples of your affection spread.
Tucked within its pages, you’ll find what it means to love yourself fully (and what it doesn’t mean), how to practice radical acts of self-love, and more! I hope it encourages you to examine how you treat yourself and begin living from a place of inner abundance and outer compassion.
Purchase your copy for just $3 by clicking Read More below!
Please note preview image quality does not reflect quality when purchased and downloaded as a PDF.
A couple of years ago, I began the tradition of noting what I’m grateful for each day during the month of December. Since then, I’ve tried to make a more regular habit of my gratitude practice, incorporating it into my daily life and weekly reflections. Numerous studies have documented the benefits of paying closer attention to what we’re thankful for (and not just during the holiday season!) This month, I invite you to join me by tracking what you’re grateful for each day. It needn’t be anything elaborate — in fact, it’s often the simplest moments that can bring us the most joy. When we seek ways to show our appreciation, we find them. Invite your family and friends to join you and use it as an opportunity to share the bounty of blessings you encounter. Perhaps you want to take it a step further and spread the ripples of joy by challenging yourself to do a random act of kindness each day or gift your time and talents to those you love. Whatever fills your heart to the brim this holiday season, find time to soak it in and share it. Here are some more ideas to get your gratitude juices flowing!
Take a snapshot of what you’re grateful for each day.
Write a letter to someone who’s inspired you and tell them how they’ve shaped your life.
Say thank you to someone whose invisible efforts often go unnoticed.
Reflect on 5 things you’re grateful for each day, 4 things you’re grateful for each week, 3 things you’re grateful for each month, 2 things you’re grateful for this past year, and 1 thing you’re grateful for right now.
Start a gratitude jar. Write down something you’re grateful for each day on a small slip of paper, fold it up, and stick it in your jar. When the jar is full, empty it out and remind yourself of all the reasons you have to be thankful. (This is a great project for the New Year!)