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Purpose and Productivity

It’s finally fall.  (Insert me doing a happy dance.)

Fall is my favorite season.  The weather begins to cool down at night, the sun is a different color, and the air just feels different. 

Apparently here in the south, fall also means that the mosquitoes quit messing around.  They come out in full force and attack anytime flesh steps outside.  Yea.

But today, even the mosquitos can’t destroy the sense of calm that fall brings me.

My Halloween candle burns on the stove and fall decorations have sprinkled my house.  Although, I did acquiesce my fall leaf decor because of my husband’s silent (yearly) pleas to forego the fake fall leaves that normally adorn the top of my kitchen cabinets.

Honestly, I’m not sure he’s noticed.  He would have noticed if I’d put them up though, because in addition to them falling down and blocking the cupboards from shutting every other day, they also have a tendency to stay above the cabinets until March.  I used to plead the excuse that our kitchen and living room décor was red, but I’ve got nothing to stand on here in my muted gray blue house. (Which I love—don’t get me wrong!)

What he doesn’t know is that weeks ago I DID actually put the leaves up.  They were greasy and old and just didn’t quite fit.  I sort of felt the same at the time.  Greasy, old, and not quite fitting into a new place.

So, I took them down, trashed them, and washed my hands of the whole “leaf fiasco.” 

It’s not quite as easy to do the same with the life I left behind, but I HAVE learned a few things recently…

I’ve learned that despite what social media and the rest of the world thinks of the hustle culture, which I have happily been playing a part in the past 20 years, it’s really not all it’s cracked up to be.

Instead, I’ve been sleeping in until eight or nine each day.  I’ve been taking daily walks and reading books.  I’ve forgotten the “to do” lists and just tackle each item as it comes to me.

I’ve learned that there is no rule that says you must accomplish ninety things before noon.  There isn’t even a rule that you need to accomplish nine things all day.

I’ve learned that it’s okay if your day-to-day schedule changes, ebbs, and flows to meet your moods. That was NEVER a thing in the land of teachers and school and consistency.

I’ve learned that despite what the world may scream at you, there are only a few things that are really, TRULY important—loving those around you, serving those around you, and taking care of yourself so that you can do both of those.

It’s pretty great.

It’s also a little scary.  I wonder, exactly what I am doing here while the rest of the world goes on outside my window?

I’m not rushing to work and rushing to the store and rushing to my kids’ events.  

I’m not exhausted from grading papers or answering emails.

I’m simply, existing.  I’m “being” instead of “doing”.

Hmmm…well, that doesn’t really sound awful at all.

Today, I struggled to get out of bed.  Not because I had a 5 a.m. alarm or because I hadn’t slept well.  I was just, well, tired.

So, I didn’t get up.  I slept.  It’s a novel idea, right?

When I did get up, I made my coffee, infused with the collagen powder that has clearly NOT gotten the message that my face is aging.  I turned on my mosquito Thermacell (necessary here), and I did nothing but enjoy my coffee.

I then went for my walk, made my latte (if you don’t have my Keurig model yet, you NEEEEEED it), and made my kids pancakes.

As the day went on, I managed to clean my shower (my least favorite of all household chores), sweep my floors, and clean my refrigerator.  Moving gives you perspective, and I swore when I cleaned our last fridge better than it had ever been when we lived there that I would do that for myself.  So, I did.

I also organized the disaster that was the small space under our bathroom counter and my laundry room.  Hubby doesn’t know it yet, but we might be creating wire shelf covers for the awful shelves in there this weekend.  Shhhhhh…

After teaching the kiddos and all of this, I took the girl to dance and made a trip to the store for emergency hurricane supplies.  I guess that’s a thing here.

Don’t worry.  I bought plenty of coffee and wine.

Now, as I sit here, I realize that despite the things I’ve done today, I’m not exhausted.

I haven’t been running from dawn ‘til dusk, and I have had time to do things that I wanted to do.  Things that make me feel productive and things that let me know I have true and genuine purpose here.

If the world has gotten you down today, just remember this…

There is purpose in productivity, but only if it aligns with those things you really feel in your core.

Be grateful, water your own grass,

…and drink coffee.

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4 Comments

  1. I love this!!!! Gilan finally retired. Third time was the charm. Abe we are both like you. Sort of struggling to figure out we aren’t in a hurry.
    Keep writing, my friend. You are touching people’s lives and minds . And it’s a good thing.

  2. Angie I so enjoy your blog, keeping writing its giving me hope that someday when I retire I won’t fall apart. So for now I will just think there is not enough time in the day to get everything done. 😆

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