This weekend was another fun one in Charleston. Friday evening we watched an interesting documentary on Medjugorje. Saturday we had some people over for hot dogs and bonfire and yesterday a few of us made it out to the beach! Tourist season can be a little overwhelming here but if you know where and when to go, it’s not so bad.
It’s gray and rainy here in Charleston and it’s supposed to rain most of the week, which I’m not excited about. But thinking up my weekly list helped me perk up a little.
What are you looking forward to this week?
Waiting can be really hard. Especially when you really want something and it’s not 100% in your control…waiting feels painful and can get old real fast. I’m not a patient person to begin with, so waiting for anything, even to pay at the checkout line or for the light to turn green can frustrate me quite a bit. However, I do think patience is a good quality to have and I think there are a few ‘tricks’ to help us more antsy people. One idea came from one of the Blessed is She women and I thought it was very wise, which is to focus on others. There’s something really stress relieving about thinking of ways that you can be helpful to someone else, as opposed to keeping the focus on ourselves. Of course we need to do what we need to do, but when we go out of our way to think and do for others, I find my own stress is lessened at least a little.
Another aspect of waiting I have been thinking about is excitement. While enjoying the present moment is essential, there’s also something to be said about looking forward to things you are hopeful about. Sometimes that can carry us through times that aren’t as fun and remind us why we’re still pushing through.
I am not a crafty person. While I love art and have a sincere appreciation for beauty and creativity, bringing those to life has never been a strong suit for me. Even in grade school I remember being so frustrated that the art projects we had to work on didn’t turn out how I wanted them to. It wasn’t something that came naturally to me. Playing violin is probably as close as I have ever gotten to that; the difference is that with something like violin you can practice the same piece over and over until it’s perfect. With crafts, you usually have to go from start to finish and then if it doesn’t turn out, start over. Last week I decided to try a craft for the first time in a long time and I remembered why I tend to avoid them…I definitely became frustrated when it wasn’t exactly how I had envisioned it in my head. However I ended up finishing the project and using it to decorate my room anyway. I’m now working on a different craft; I genuinely enjoy it when I’m not being critical of my work. I think the tendency toward perfectionism shouldn’t stop us from doing things we’re not great at…and hopefully improvement will come with time.
I’ve kept a journal consistently since I was twelve or so. It’s crazy to look back on entries when you were in a completely different stage of life and how much things have changed since then. Since I’ve gotten older I definitely am not as dedicated as I used to be, I even went a month or so without writing anything when my last journal ran out of room. This weekend I finally got around to buying a new one – I really like these by Studio Oh! – and I’m already glad I did. Not everyone finds journaling helpful, but I think for some of us it can be a great way of working through thoughts in a healthy way as opposed to letting them run in circles inside your head. And then years later it’s really entertaining to look back on how much you had to say about the 16 year old boy with blond hair in your homeroom class.
Summer bucket lists
My best friend and I did these while in college for a few years and even though I don’t have a summer break like we used to, I think it’s a good tradition worth keeping. Time can go by so fast and those things you want to do and say you will ‘one day’ go undone. Bucket lists for specific time periods I think are easier to accomplish, summer is especially cool because there tends to be so much going on!
I think perseverance is such an underrated quality. It’s not as glamorous as courage or as intimidating as humility, but I think it is so important. Even if it’s something relatively insignificant such as learning how to cook, perseverance can get us far. It becomes even more essential in things like relationships where difficulties aren’t resolved overnight. I think I’ve found perseverance especially helpful because I’m not super skilled. While I love a lot of things, I can’t say that many of them come super easily to me (writing could be an exception). When it comes to running, cooking, baking, crafts…I certainly have had my fair share of failures and frustrations, but haven’t wanted to stop trying either. So even when I can’t say I’m good at something, I can say I persevered despite that. I think when it comes to the real challenges in life (not cupcake decorating), you really don’t mean much more than to keep trying.
I hope this week holds things you’re excited about!