“The practice of paying attention serves as an anchor for the soul in a fast-moving world.” Emily P. Freeman
What did I learn this month? What did I experience? What did I enjoy? What was God showing me? These are questions I ask myself at the end of the month as I look back through my journal, my morning pages, my Bible Study notes, my cell phone pictures, blogs/articles I have saved on my Bloglovin account, or photos from my instagram account! As I just recently started this blog, I was looking to find some writing rhythms. So this is one pattern of practice that I have learned about from blogger and author, Emily P Freeman. You can click on the link to read how she keeps track of what she is learning.
Here are some suggestions of my own for the process of paying attention:
- List of 10: In my journal I pretty regularly write down each day 10 joys and 10 accomplishments. The accomplishments can be very very small! I read this is a good strategy for helping with depression. I love looking back on the things that made me smile! I often forget some of my accomplishments too, and the reminders are encouraging. The little things add up!
- Stand out Words: When I read over my morning pages, (3 pages in my journal where I write about anything that comes to my mind each day) I highlight words that seems to repeat themselves a lot in the month, just like people often pick a word for their year. I look for standout words for the month. This month I found the words wind, stuck, waiting, writing, mentor and pizza repeated in my journal! Yes, I had to much pizza this month! Hoping March will be a healthier month! I also notice themes and words in articles, blogs, books, or devotionals I have read. This month the theme of faith, counsel, and gentleness/humility were reoccurring themes.
I hope you find these helpful, and if you are a blogger you might link up with me over at Emily P Freeman's blog to share about your month too.
What I learned in February
- Warm, windy, winters bring grass fires in Oklahoma, which makes the air pretty yucky! Though some days I enjoyed being able to watch Oliver play outside in his sandbox, mostly the weather felt strange and threw me off a bit! Some of the daffodils in my back yard have already bloomed.
- I learned that I need to tell Oliver's preschool teachers not to be fooled by his acting. He has started pretending to be sick. I took him to the doctor to check if his ear infection had cleared up. His teachers sent him home the day before because he was not acting himself. The doctor asked him how he was doing. He said "I am sick" with a sad face. Note that he had been running around playing all morning. Then she asked me if he had been congested or coughing and all the sudden I hear Oliver go "AH CHEW". Also my nephew had a bad ski accident and broke his leg this month. After, I showed Oliver pictures of Finnley in his cast he started falling down saying he broke his leg. One morning when I walked in his room the first words out of his mouth were "Mommy, my cast". He had wrapped his 'blue blanket' around his arm.
- I learned Oliver has a funny "puppet" voice! I don't know where he picked it up, but it made me laugh! https://www.instagram.com/p/BBa952LqrUX/
- This is random. but made me happy. Pro basketball player Kevin Durrant's favorite scripture is the same as mine. Matthew 11:29. He had nike design shoes for him with the scripture written on the soul of the shoe. I love the shoes. Also, here is a good article I read about understatement and humility that Emily P Freeman shared.
- I learned my favorite pens are the staedtler fineliners. Thank you Anne Bogel at modernmrsdarcy.com for the tips!
What brought me joy in February
- Walks with people I love! A walk at sunset with my mom. A walk with my closest girl friends, strolling our kids, trying to walk off all the pizza we just had for dinner, while our husbands played board games together this past weekend. A walk with my Dad and nephew. I pushed him in his wheelchair around my parents neighborhood. I love listening to Finnley and my Dad talk together.
- Unexpected craft nights! The best part was that I wasn't the one setting everything up. My husband has been working on creating a wooden Catan board. He has gotten to the part of painting all the pieces now. He would come home from work at night and paint, and let Oliver paint with watercolors next to him. I loved it. Like Madeline L'Engle says "It's the nature of love to create". Just seeing Jeff and Oliver do things together made me smile.