When I finally decided to formalize DIY Life into an actual part of my website I was hoping the mindset that’s taken me through seven years of documenting projects and sawdust and life-with-tools would slowly become a part of other areas of my life as well.
So far I’ve found this to be true in two was. 1.) I’ve turned into a mad scientist in the kitchen, complete with flour on my cheek, crazy hair, and the occasional finger being minced in the blender. However, I’ve also come up with some really awesome recipes that fit into my small meal lifestyle (including 200 calorie strawberry shortcake cupcakes… yes, I’m a bit of a genius and I’ll be sharing that soon) and this Butternut Squash & Apple recipe that I’m in love with. And 2.) all of the sudden I’m holding on to these really good ideas I pick up in everyday life. I jot them down on my notepad, in my phone, or send myself an email. I think about them later… how I might incorporate them in my life, what I might share about them with you.
The truth is that playing in the sawdust is still my first priority, but I don’t want to lose these ideas either. Here’s a quick look at some things I’ve been holding on to… that I may or may not incorporate into my lifestyle experiments in the future.
On Taking Action – Choose one thing you want to accomplish in your life (for me one of the projects on my list), then set an alarm on your phone for 3 minutes every day and use those 3 minutes to take some kind of action towards that goal.
On Prioritizing – The Nothing Else pad from Buttoned Up gave me this idea… Starting out my day by asking what are the one or two or three things I would need to accomplish to consider the day successful.
On Learning New Things- Have a goal to learn one new thing every day. Well, we all learn new things every day, but to actively acknowledge them by writing them down at the end of the day. Keeping track of all the things I learn and a record so I don’t forget them.
On Being Grateful – My big goal for 2012 is to continue being grateful. Right now I make sure to take time on my drive in to work every day to say two or three things I’m grateful for out loud. I’m thinking another way to do this might be to write them down. I’m not religious, but it’s a bit like praying at the beginning or end of the day, and I think that’s a good way to start things out, or end them.
On Keeping Track- I’ve seen some “Project Life” photobooks and activity pages being pinned on pinterest and while just keeping up with the website is a fairly large amount of documenting my everyday life, I’d like to try to do a paper/photo/writing version for a year. I’m thinking I might do it from birthday to birthday starting in may, and I might include some of those things like keeping track of what I learn and being grateful as well.
On Failure – I’ve been thinking a lot about failure lately and how necessary it is for growth. I love the idea of this “Fail Wall” described in this HBR article. Here’s a quote:
When you make a mistake, you’re forced to look back and find out exactly where you went wrong, and formulate a new plan for your next attempt. By contrast, when you succeed, you don’t always know exactly what you did right that made you successful (often, it’s luck).
On Connecting – I’ve made more connections with people in the last six months of my life than I have in the thirty previous years, and I have no idea why. But I’ve also had more good ideas fall into my lap as well, and I have a feeling those two things could be related. Recently my architect (who I spend as much time talking with about life as I do about floorplans) told me she’s always had this idea to have a group of women– a secret society, almost– who aren’t friends or family, but who come together to support each other by giving and allowing the kind of honesty that it’s difficult to share with people who are too close to you. I think it’s brilliant.
On Feeling Like Superwoman – Every once in a while I have one of those days where I just power through life. I cut through my to-do lists like butter, get everything I could hope for done and then some, and just in general feel like I kicked ass. I still have no idea what separates those days from the ones where it’s hard to focus or get motivated. I’m thinking about organizing a “power week” for myself… one where I really stretch to meet all of my goals, tasks, to-do’s and projects, just to see if I’m organized, prepared, and motivated enough, can I really kick ass for seven days straight?
Have any good/inspirational ideas found you in your everyday life recently?