Lent. It is that time of year again. When I saw everyone sharing what they were giving up for Lent, I remembered that I, too, needed to figure out what I was going to give up. In years past I have given up chocolate, wine, soda and caffeine and I find that instead of having the intended purpose, it makes me bitter and I lose focus about the real purpose behind giving something up. This year I am going to try a new approach. I am going to really try to focus on new ways to handle situations when I feel that crankiness and irritability creeping in. I have been letting things get to me way too easily lately and it ends up not only affecting me, but my whole family.
I have to remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day. Things take time and I tend to set standards for myself that are unachievable. When I don’t achieve what I have set out to do, I am very hard on myself, which then results in irritability. The key for me is learning to set more realistic goals. When I make to-do lists, I am going to start making a monthly one and then a daily one. This way I can put the things down that I would like to accomplish for the month, but not feel overwhelmed looking at that goal or to-do item daily and seeing it fall further & further down my list. Then it becomes that dreaded thing on my to-do list that I haven’t done and I feel like I have failed. I need to remove that word from my vocabulary.
I have a habit of trying to find new ways to accomplish goals and then when that new way doesn’t work, I feel as if there is something wrong with me. I feel disorganized & overwhelmed. I hate that feeling. One example is a “Household Notebook” that I started last year. Yeah, that lasted for less than a month. It was a good exercise in paper wasting and wasting a good chunk of time that I could have spent with my family putting together a notebook that didn’t end up working for me. I felt like I let myself down because that method didn’t work from me. What I should have done was take the kids out for ice cream or to a movie instead. Hindsight, right?
So, for the next 40 days I am going to focus on keeping my expectations of situations low, going with the flow and not stressing out when things go awry. I am hoping that by doing the previous things, I can be less irritable & cranky. No one likes a sourpuss, right? A little chocolate & wine is sure to help.