I’ve been wanting to make some changes in my life. I haven’t been happy with how I’ve been treating Jody or the frustration in parenting I’ve been feeling the past few months with Ava. I knew I needed to do something and with the new year feeling like a clean slate and an opportunity for a fresh start, it seemed like a great time to take the plunge.
I’m not a member of any 12-step programs, but I’m acquainted with enough people who are to know a bit about some of the lingo.
I started thinking about how many of the sayings from the programs – like “Just for today” or “One day at a time” – can be applied to parenting and really life in general. One does not need to have an addiction to use those phrases in their life. Maybe other people have already figured this out or don’t need to, but for me it really was an “a-ha!” moment.
As a result, I wrote some motivational phrases to myself and secured them with a magnet in a stack on the refrigerator. For the past two mornings, I’ve gone through the stack to find a phrase that I wanted to apply for the day and moved it to the top of the stack.
Yesterday’s phrase was “Just for today.” For me that means I only need to worry about my parenting or my attitude TODAY. I don’t need to think about tomorrow, or a week from now or a year from now. I just need to do it today.
When I think about it in those terms, doing anything “just for today” seems possible. Just for today I can be mindful of my temper. Just for today I can refrain from making snide remarks to my husband. Just for today I can speak without raising my voice. Just for today I will believe in myself. The list could go on and on.
Today’s phrase was “Live in the moment.” It is very similar to “just for today,” but helped me focus myself even more. Like today when Ava was overly tired and started melting down over something little, I chose to live in the moment and not worry about what was to come, but just deal with the situation at hand. It’s true that I still got frustrated, but I regrouped myself and dealt with her more calmly than I otherwise might have. And ya know what? The situation resolved itself that much faster.
Other phrases I have written down in the stack are “Today matters” and “Choose happiness” (both wonderfully inspirational sayings from Tees for Change), as well as “Parent consciously” and others.
It is my hope that because I plan to rotate through the list on a daily basis and add new phrases to the stack as they come to me, it will help me really think about each thought for the day and not have the affirmations just blend into the “woodwork” so to speak as they’ve done in the past when I’ve had something posted on the fridge for weeks at a time. We’ll see how it goes, but for now I like how it is increasing my awareness and helping me focus myself.
Just for today I am aware and am doing the best that I can.