Change Your Mind, Change Your Life
Often times, I find myself contemplating my life and what I am doing with it, how I can be better. Recently, I wrote a blog post about having no more excuses. You can find that here. Change your mind, change your life. Take a moment to think about that.
My life is ever changing. I was once 19 year old girl feeding, bathing, and clothing a forever changed young man (my husband.) Trust me, there were some dark times. I can only assume life has more lessons for us in store. There was a time where I was unsure of my marital future.
In these dark times, I had to learn that I could not control the things going on around me, but I COULD control myself. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in what OTHER PEOPLE are doing, thinking, feeling, and saying that we aren’t looking in the mirror and asking OURSELVES the same questions.
Recently, I found myself complaining that there were not enough hours in the day. I never had enough time to fit everything in. By neglecting to fit things in, I was losing my goals. So, I had to change my mind. I decided that I was going to start getting up at 4 AM, Monday through Friday. That would give me an extra 3 hours to be productive, to find a routine and stick to it. I have now had the time to plan and script a YouTube show idea that I had not made time for. That far fetched goal is getting closer to reality as I begin recording it this weekend.
I have a girlfriend, Lilly who lives quite far from here and she told me there were not enough hours in the day. (Don’t worry, this is written with Lilly’s permission!!! We have been friends for a very long time and she knows I want to use this as a learning tool.) No judgement said or implied, she is a working woman, several years younger than me, with no children. She complained that she and her husband (who worked both work full time) never have time together. They never share meals. She doesn’t have “time” to cook meals.
She asked for my advice on what to do, knowing I had been married a long time and have been through a lot of experiences. I shared with her what I did with my schedule change and how quickly results started coming in for me. You want to know what her answer was? “F*** no. I am way too tired to be getting up that early.” So…I guess that was off the table.
Next, I shared with her some meal prep ideas I had seen and tried in order to allow them the time to share meals together as her husband so desperately wanted. He wants to eat home cooked meals so bad that it is actually causing fights and tension. “Still…that is a lot of chopping and prepping, and I need sleep.” I even tried to explain how quick it is on a Saturday to prep a few meals. I told her it wouldn’t even take two hours and their marriage would be thankful for it.
Too Much Sleep
Unfortunately, Lilly, in my opinion, sleeps way, way too much. (We are talking 12 or more hours a day about 35% of the time) The problem is, SHE KNOWS she sleeps too much. I told her that I used to have poor sleep habits when I was a young woman, and it affected my productivity. I saw a counselor many years ago that discussed healthy sleep habits with me. (You can find a list here.) I learned what to do to encourage the best sleep possible so I could awake feeling refreshed and ready for the day. I shared those with her. One of those things included PUTTING HER PHONE DOWN. She refuses. “Well, that is how I keep in touch with people.” I asked her what was more important, the people she kept in touch with on the internet OR her marriage?”
Her sleeping constantly is also causing problems with her husband who is trying to pick up the slack of the things she IS NOT doing (laundry, dishes, etc) because she is otherwise occupied with sleep. She insisted that her sleep habits were not affecting the marriage. Yet, she tells me he is fighting with her for ATTENTION. It seems to me it IS affecting the marriage.
Too Much Social Media
In another of our phone conversations, she mentioned her husband is becoming increasingly unhappy and the times that she isn’t sleeping or working she is GLUED 100% to her phone. She is so busy with her internet persona instead of as her husband put it “Cultivating a real identity.” Again, in this instance, he pleads with her to put the phone down and simply watch a movie with him–WITHOUT SOCIAL MEDIA. She absolutely cannot get through a movie without picking up her phone and scrolling through her feed. I asked her what it would hurt to shut it off a few hours a day? Long story short, she refused and had about 30 different reasons WHY NOT.
An Invitation To Change
You will notice here that every invitation I have given her to CHANGE, has been turned into an answer full of excuses! She had an answer for EVERYTHING. The foundation of her marriage is beginning to crack and crumble and she could fix it. Yet, she chooses not to put the work in.
You may ask what gives me the right to say any of this? Well, I have found myself constantly having to change. I could not control the way my husband behaved, I could not control the coldness he displayed when he came home from Iraq. People told me to LEAVE HIM! (Quite a lot). This was NEVER an option for me, and it was NEVER an option for him. We said forever and we meant it.
So, I had to work on myself, I had to be the example. I had to learn how to interact with him to create the best possible result. I was tired of us being at each-other’s throats when he came home bitter and angry. So, I found fulfillment in myself. I CHANGED. See, the key thing you have to remember is YOU CANNOT CHANGE OTHER PEOPLE! Happily, he ended up seeking counselling and such, but it was in HIS time not mine. If I would not have changed, I would still be banging my head against a wall today.
You have to start today. Ask yourself, “What are my goals?” Whether its to run a marathon, learn to cook, or find more time–DO IT! Take a step, even if it is a tiny one towards a goal.
It could be as simple as, “My goal is to stop being behind on laundry.” Ok. Great. How? “I am going to wash, fold, and put away one load a day.” Now do it!
You have to be the one to move. You cannot expect others to move and you cannot expect others to do anything for you. There are those that do and those that don’t–be one who DOES!!!!!!!