Monday, February 2, 2015

Groundhog's Day and A Snow Day Challenge

What is it about winter that makes us a little nutty? Groundhog's day is a rather silly celebration when you think about it. It's six more weeks of winter regardless of whether or not the rodent sees his shadow. Several friends have birthday's today. One friend has mentioned the ridiculous comments from others requesting weather predictions. Just plain nutty.

Today is particularly cold with 13 inches of snow atop all of the surfaces. Despite my general dislike of winter, cold and snow, I'm thankful for the occasional day off. January gets the best of us around here, all of the running around with games, meetings and such. Snow days are a mandatory day off. A day to get caught up on things we've been putting off doing. Things will get cleaned, homework will be completed, food will be prepared, lesson plans shored up. It's a mandatory day to be stress free, or at least a little less stressed. 

I like to write. I've mentioned before the therapeutic release writing provides. Turns out there's scientific evidence to support this notion. The New York Times featured an article on their blog that suggests proof of improved happiness through writing. Be still my heart! I have personally always linked writing to many of my more successful ventures, be it studying for a test by writing and rewriting information as if imprinting it into my brain, expressing feelings through written word rather than spoken, or written goals and steps of a plan, breaking down each element into approachable steps for a struggling student. The written word may be one of the most powerful tools of success we possess.

Think about this for a second. Why wouldn't we write down our goals and aspirations? People tend to believe what they read. Celebrity gossip magazines in the grocery store check out lane; internet articles about the newest, latest and greatest whatchamacallit promising fantastic results. Statistics are in written form, often with pictures and graphs. Words and pictures are dynamite together! It makes sense to write down affirmations to help us feel better. Do you write down things that make you happy? The Thankfulness Journal has been a big idea in the last several years. Do you write down the things that you're thankful for? What an amazing transformation this can do for one's attitude! What a great way to monitor progress on a goal. Writing is a great way to be held accountable with yourself. It's scary to see those ideas in black and white. There's something intimidating and awesome about writing things down.

For me the blog serves several purposes. I don't blog for followers or notoriety. I don't do this to get paid or be famous. This blog serves as a way to document my life, a sort of living biography, if you will. It documents the crazy projects I come up with, the hectic chaos of my life with my boys, and keeping my passions alive. Writing things here and sharing with you helps me stay accountable with my goals. My successes. My struggles. My failures. But here's the funny thing- when I look back at things I thought were failures at the time, I realize they weren't failures. Those things were stumbling blocks to refocus my attention. Just because I didn't get to that thing I wrote on my list doesn't mean it's the end of that goal. Out comes the pen and paper, or more likely, the EverNote App. (Never heard of it? It's like a digital notebook that syncs between your devices. I have it on my iPad, iPhones and computer.)  I start writing, or when I'm on a run I voice note into the app, things that I believe are in my way and strategies to improve. Writing is helping me progress toward the goal. This progression is part of the adventure. No dwelling on the negative. What did I learn from this? How can I make it work to keep making progress toward my goal?

Writing means thinking. Thinking means movement toward progress. Progress means happy.
Writing = Happy

Your challenge: write down one thing that you want to improve this month. Come back to it each week and reflect on that goal.  How does that goal make you feel when you read it? How's it going?  What were hurdles? What went really well?  Ready? Go!


  1. I totally agree with you and your thoughts on writing, Alison. I'm not a good writer, but I use writing as a tool to see what I'm thinking not as a career choice or even an artistic expression. I need to see and read aloud my thoughts to make wiser decisions in my life. And to review past choices. I enjoy reading lots of blogs, but especially like yours to keep in touch with you and the family. I'd love to be an old fashion letter writer, but know that isn't going to happen! Blogging is the next best thing. Keep it up, Lady. Love and miss you!

    1. You are a wonderful writer, Hedy! Love and miss you too!! xo


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