August's Letter from the Editor: Being In Between
August is an in between time, with summer ending and the new school year right around the corner. I feel like all of our lives hang on transitional moments, like the next coming holiday or the new year or when it's time to start a new job. During this transitional time between summer and fall, I find myself in a lot of in-between personal situations, as I'm sure you all are in some way or another. It's so important to take a breath and just relax.
The most important things I've learned in my thirties is how to be happy and satisfied no matter what is going on in my life and how to just calm the f@ck down. In between times can be uncomfortable, whether good or bad things are on the way. It makes it tempting to rush things along from point A to point B just so you can settle in and relax. But the key is learning how to relax between point A and B.
I've found that for me two things in particular play a big role in how much I'm able to relax and enjoy whatever comes next - being grateful and being confident. The most powerful little nugget I've ever heard on how to be happy is that our thoughts ultimately effect our emotions, not the other way around. It's so important to learn to focus on positive things, especially on the things we're grateful for. Let's face it, unless you're totally alone with no home and no food and no friend in the world, there is surely something left to be thankful for. I recently recovered (as much as possible) from a debilitating back injury. For months I relied on my 9 yr old daughter to prepare my meals and help me with housework. This year I've been thankful just to walk long enough to go to the store, to be able to work out again, even to vacuum my own house, and especially to travel and be in my best friend's wedding. If you have your health, that in itself is something to be thankful for. And you know what? Even when I had trouble walking, I was grateful that I could walk at all, that I had legs that I knew would carry me wherever I wanted to go after my back healed. I knew I had more than some people have. It helps to pin point exactly what you're grateful for and let that be your new mantra whenever you're feeling beaten down.
Then comes the confidence. If you know that you're doing your best, well, that is really the best you can do. When you know you're doing everything in your power to get from point A to point B, you can remind yourself of that whenever you feel as if you aren't making any headway. Whenever I had hard days with my injury (and boy did I ever), I started with being grateful for what I could still do, then I forced myself to push through my physical therapy. I learned that the more I did everything in my power to help myself, the stronger and more confident I felt. Then whenever another tough day came along, I was much more relaxed and surprisingly happy. The next time you're having a down day, remind yourself of what you do have and where you've gotten so far. Be proud of it. This is where the ultimate peace and patience come in. Trying to be patient by sheer force of will is quite impossible, but when we learn to be grateful for where we are rather than where we want to be, and when we know deep down that we're doing the best we can to get where we want to be, we can truly sit back and relax and enjoy the in between times.
Previously on Krisztina's Blog:
Do You Still Believe in Magic?
Can You Spare Some Change?
The Best Things I Ever Learned from My Mom