Last night I was having a difficult conversation with my fiancé about being stressed out and trying to balance my life. I didn’t think I could juggle work, joining doTERRA as a wellness advocate and builder, planning a wedding, DIY-ing save the dates and invitations, all while traveling to Chicago and California for engagement parties and meeting with vendors, scheduling time for engagement photos, marriage prep, every day chores, etc., all while making time to foster relationships with my friends and family around me, not to mention my fiancé!
At that moment I felt very much not at peace with myself and frustrated with my inability to organize my life so that I could easily balance everything going on. My thought was “something needs to go so that life can be simpler.” Instead he reminded me that a simple life doesn’t begin with cutting things, events, or people out, but reshaping my mentality. That means viewing these different things as blessings that I’ve been graced with, instead of competing tasks on my unending to-do list. Thinking, “I am so incredibly blessed to be preparing for marriage with this wonderful man!” instead of, “I canNOT believe how much work is involved in planning a wedding!” Or, “I am so grateful God blessed me with the creative talent to design and make my own cards” instead of, “if I had a bigger budget, it’d be so much quicker and easier to get these done.”
In the age of social media, it’s very easy to forget our blessings and become discontent with what we have. A helpful way for me to curb feelings of discontent or comparison is to make a list of blessings I’ve been given, which helps me frame my mind with gratitude. This is a virtue which didn’t come naturally and that my fiancé has very patiently helped me nurture! When we started long-distance dating and I wasn’t sure if I was going to stay in DC, I had the mentality of “work hard, earn and save money, and focus on finding a job back in Dallas.” I completely disregarded the gift of living in a new and exciting city and all the vibrant, passionate, ambitious, and faith-filled young adults around me. I didn’t think much about making new friends, just getting back to my old friends. I distinctly remember telling Colin that I didn’t see a point in putting down roots in DC since I most likely would be moving in a few months. He gently reminded me that God placed me in DC for a reason, and gifted me with my roommates for a reason and that I had a duty to figure out why. Fast forward 2 years later and my work experience in DC landed me with a great job in food marketing back in Dallas, and my 4 DC roommates are going to be my bridesmaids in my upcoming wedding!
Living the simple life doesn’t necessarily mean downsizing to a tiny home, getting rid of all but the necessities, etc. For me, this mentality focuses more on being satisfied and fulfilled with what I’ve been given instead of wanting more. In order to fully live out this mindset, that means properly appreciating every single blessing and gift.
How do you practice gratitude throughout your day?