Series: For This I'm Grateful

This week brought it's fair share of sweet, positive little things I'm grateful for. Read below for more on five of them.

1. I discovered the Dear Sugars podcast this week. I devoured the Dear Sugar advice-column years ago after finding it on the Rompus. I spent hours pouring over strangers' intimate letters asking those elusive questions from "is she the one?" to "should I move across country?". I guess it's considered an advice-column, but it's done unlike any I've ever read. I promise this isn't the four-line quirky responses you see in Cosmo. The writer is empathetic and raw, and, more so than answer questions, starts conversations about the really good (and sometimes really hard) stuff in life. Some questions will always be unanswerable, but this column still beautifully brought all the questions to light. The author was anonymous for some time and then revealed that she was Cheryl Strayed, the wild woman (Wild) we all now know. I'd been craving these intimate letters since I finished the column way too fast so it totally made my week when I discovered that it's now evolved into a podcast, with the added male perspective of Steve Almond. I've listened to a few shows already, and they are still emotional, so real, and unlike any other advice column/book/thing I've ever read. Every time I listen I feel like I'm sitting down with a friend for a heart-to-heart over coffee. It's the best. 

2. This article made me lol, for real. First of all, bucket lists should never die. My friends and I would create summer bucket lists, and lists for the school-year growing up. Time was fast and we needed to make the most of it! Nowadays I'm good about making plans, whether it's a quick weekend getaway or planning a bigger trip, but I haven't made a bucket list in quite a while. I loved being reminded of 17: "buy 7 bikinis," "go ape" (I think my friends and I called it GO HAM). There is literally nothing like summers as a teen, am I right? Ahh, and then time goes on and our bucket list items change to: "try not to drink more than half a bottle of Pinot Grigio on weeknights". The authors estimate the second list is from a 35 year-old, and I love the differences in must-dos between the two. But I think I most love that some things never change -- both authors want to have sex and get a little tan. Amazing.

3. I read Outliers a couple of years ago and started re-reading it this week. I like that the book is science and statistics-based yet poignant and easy to read. The book is about how "being smart" just isn't enough. Natural talent will only get you so far. It examines several greats, whether the Beatles or Steve Jobs, and points out that they were all utterly obsessed with their craft, and spent up to 10,000 hours of practice in their craft. This makes sense to me. I don't want to be a jack-of-all-trades, but instead a master of one tiny thing, even if it's a seemingly small "thing". "The elite don’t just work harder than everybody else. At some point the elites fall in love with practice to the point where they want to do little else." I like thinking about this and putting it practice in all areas of my business.

4. I've always been interested in the power of personality traits and how they lay the foundation for our lives. I believe I'm always changing, and that growth is always possible, but the bones of me remain the same. I've taken my fair share of personality tests, and I like learning about how these may shape my perception of the world. This week I took the Big Five Personality Test, which has a bit of a different approach. Instead of seemingly mapping out your likes-dislikes/what type of job you should have/what type of partner you need, it weighs five dimensions of your personality, which are all fluid: openness, agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, and neuroticism. Understanding where I fall on these dimension and how it impacts my approach of the world helps me to be more self-aware, grateful for my strengths, and understanding of my vulnerabilities. 

5. Every week is a new adventure. This one brought it's fair share of exciting projects, tasks checked off the to-do list, and a little bit of anxiety and restlessness. I'm grateful for Barkan yoga, which I got to do several times this week, and is basically a more chill version of hot yoga. You still get the good sweat, but it's not as strict, and music is highly encouraged. My time in class allows me to check out and be (as) quiet (as possible). It's therapeutic and brings a sense of peace I don't always find otherwise.

Naomi MartinComment