How are you processing this time of pandemic, oddity, and extreme closeness mixed with isolation?
A lot of the time, it’s “mind over matter” at our house. In just a few days, Zack and I will celebrate 12 years of marriage. Our children are young in age, close in birth year, and so fun to be around. But also, this means we have to be so intentional with our time (especially our conversation).
Through my seven years of motherhood, I’ve learned the very best mothering (really all aspects of life) comes from setting our hearts and eyes on virtuous things.
By the way, here’s how I’d answer my question above.
I’m doing well, though it’s like I’m riding my bicycle on a steady hill of up and down. Some days I pedal hard to make it up the hill, other days I’m able to coast. The trick is to keep my feet on the pedals and my legs moving. I mean, I don’t want to fall off my bicycle (I’ve definitely done that before), nor do I want to get stuck in the overwhelm of panic or pessimism. I want to live wholly and freely.
If you’re feeling stormy (that’s what I call my overwhelm), here are some easy steps to consider…
Go outside and take a break from the normal scene.
Take a nap.
Read something inspiring or encouraging.
Calm your mind through prayer.
Remember Who made you.
Check a simple task off your to-do list. Hello, pep-talk!
Put your phone on silent, then hide it in a drawer.
Sit with your child and play / color / tell a story / rub her back.
Talk with your husband. Affirm him, compliment him, invite him on an evening date at home ;)
Gather your family around the table and enjoy a wholesome meal.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve realized it’s much easier to have control over my mind when I remember Who made me, when I remember who God is, and when I keep a couple lists going on my refrigerator (one for fun goals, one for tasks).
Give your mind something to feast on (beauty), your heart something to rest in (truth), your life something to be proud of (goodness).
This is when the goodness appears. I realize, there is much going on that is worth celebrating! Joy can exist alongside heartache, familiar can exist alongside difficulty. Progress can be made, you just have to keep your feet on the pedals and your legs moving.
To bring these juxtapositions to life, have meaningful conversations with your family and friends.
When my family gathers at the dinner table, I like to ask these three questions:
- what was good about your day?
- tell me, what was hard?
- is there something you learned?
Sometimes, someone around the table needs a little help remembering. Be patient. Be quiet; remember, you are here to listen while they talk and describe their day. Children are wonderful storytellers, and they inspire me frequently. But also, my husband is a great storyteller and perspective-shifter. I really cherish his wisdom and all that he adds to our home.
Do you feel these things about the people in your home or life?
So, set your hearts and eyes on virtuous things. Give your mind something to feast on (beauty), your heart something to rest in (truth), your life something to be proud of (goodness). Ask the questions, but be sure to listen.
What do you hear?