grateful days are the greatest days

my 31 day countdown to the new decade begins now! follow along through nye as i look back on the things i’ve been grateful for (in no particular order) this year …

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image | courtney channeling uncle eddie

31. vulnerability – i am proud of my ability to be vulnerable. one of my favorite authors, brené brown, defines vulnerability as “uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure” ; this blog is vulnerable. posting personal insights, stories, or learnings takes bravery, and i am glad that i have this ability to openly share who i am … even as a work in progress! this year i have bravely and vulnerably expressed the 4 things that matter most (please forgive me. i forgive you. thank you. i love you.) to quite a few people. i’ve been able to communicate not only these 11 words, but also share with them why or for what reason. a few years ago i led a hospice campaign around this, and some of the outcomes were quite profound. from then on i vowed to integrate these 4 statements into my life, and i am proud to say that i have! thank you, dr. ira byock! #ho’oponopono

30. friendships – i feel incredibly blessed by the diverse circle around me. although i may not physically see my friends as often as i’d like, it’s comforting to know they are always a phone call or text away … girlfriends, guy friends, past partners, colleagues, mentors, new friends, old friends … those who connect for no reason at all ; who extend themselves when times are tough ; who share things that remind them of me or that they know i’d like ; who listen to me vulnerability vent – often with scary honesty ; who challenge me ; who teach me ; who laugh with me ; wipe a tear ; or hold me close. those who stretch me outside of my comfort zone ; who introduce me to new things ; or join me on adventures! each individually adds value to my life in their own unique way, and collectively they make this unmapped journey all the more worthwhile! #thankyouforbeingafriend

29. sweet g – i brought giorgio home almost 9 years ago, after picking him out with my social work intern on one of her last days. he’s the cutest, most stubborn (don’t they say pets are like their parents 🤔), lazy, gentle dog. he has never ruined a toy in his life, and loves to be held. sleeping is what he does best, and as long as he has a window to perch on, he’s content! my dad is his favorite human (when i used to travel weekly for work they were together a lot, so he’s by far happiest with him) and going for car rides is his favorite thing to do. recently i was quite concerned because he was losing weight, his spine was showing, and he appeared overall unwell. i took him to his vet (dr. osorio at veterinary associates of north branford [ct] is the best!) only to find out he’s depressed – my long hours from working so much caught up not only to me, but also took a toll on him! now that the studio has closed and i am home more, gio is more playful and has already put some weight back on! today (12/3) he returns for a follow-up check-up and i am hopeful he receives another clean bill of health! i am grateful for his companionship, the added personality he brings to our home, and his warmth, especially on snowy days like today! #bestson

28. pilates – towards the end of the day today (12/4) i felt ill and had to miss a sponsored networking event and my beloved pilates class. it only took 35 years for me to find an exercise that i actually enjoy, and i am so glad i did! because i have really high cortisol levels, meaning my body naturally lives in a fight or flight state, i often feel tired and fast-paced exercise leaves me feeling even more exhausted. pilates is a slower (yet still leaves you feeling sore) workout, and half of the time requires laying down on the machine – right up my alley! i was glad to find a like-new reformer machine on craigslist two summers ago to use at home and the newly opened club pilates in east greenwich is the perfect place for me to go after work a few days each week to practice strengthening my body and to learn more ways to use the machine (there appears to be hundreds of ways to use it for lengthening, leaning and sculpting). i cannot say enough good things about pilates and i’m glad to be getting beach body ready early this year! #healthyinsideandout

27. sleep – boy do i love sleep! my sister sent me this quote awhile back and it really spoke to me (not to mention because of my connection with birds, but that’s for another post) – “i am not a morning bird or a night owl. i am some form of permanently exhausted pigeon.” as someone who requires a lot of sleep to function well, it’s a blessing that i can sleep in most any condition – lights, sounds, on planes, trains, and automobiles – and i especially love to sleep to the rocking of a boat. because i so value sleep, a few years ago i invested in a sleep number bed. my sister and i went to try out beds (i do not recommend this after a few drinks) and fortunately i found my king (i opted for the 1/2 split, which requires special sheets, and is the only somewhat annoying part of the purchase)! i aim to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night, and i prefer not to talk before 9am (lol, my poor family got grunts for many years as answers because of this)! i was thrilled a few years back when arianna huffington raised such an awareness about sleep because i think it’s such an important part of well-being. i look forward to climbing into my bed each night, and it’s my hardest goodbye each morning!  #25

26. love – to anticipate it ; to find it ; to see it ; to feel it ; to hear it ; to touch it ; to share it ; to linger in it ; to believe in it ; to be it ; to reflect on it ; to remember it ; to let it go ; to carry on better because of it. #loveremains

25. loss – loss inevitably follows love. and it seems the harder we love, the harder we experience loss. this year loss has been part of my journey – personally (my aunt, who was more like my little sister, and a relationship) and professionally (a patient who i formed a very special bond with and the SALT studio). i understand loss to be a natural part of life – working in hospice helps with accepting this. although heartbreak hurts, the love experienced makes the loss worthwhile because of how meaningful and significant the connection was. i believe that the love that remains after loss, when properly processed, gets woven into parts of us. it’s then the culmination of all of our parts that shapes us into who we are today. this weekend i’ve been binging on virgin river on netflix and think it’s fitting to share that today (12/7) in episode 7 mel quoted her dad, saying to jack, “the price of love is loss.” #truestory

24. ambiance – i think the world is a pretty crazy place, and i find solace in coming home to a peaceful environment. if you come over, chances are you’ll be greeted with music playing – calm, acoustic, soulful, sweet songs to fill my small corner of the world.  i am big on ambiance, aroma, and organization. airy bright-filled days turn into romantic candle-lit nights. lately my house smells of firewood and my favorite bergamot amber candle, which i have burning across a few rooms. i haven’t always been this way. i used to have a lot of clutter – i kept everything and every surface had to have something on it. after facing some anxieties and living with mike, who was very orderly, i adapted to a more minimalist lifestyle, as far as decor goes. i like everything to have a place, and to either hold meaning or have purpose. i find operating like this to be calming, practical, and it gives me the peaceful, easy feeling i enjoy within my four walls. this evening (12/8) i put up my first real tree since 2015 – a concolor fir. i love how the white lights, thoughtfully selected ornaments that i’ve collected over the years, and the citrus fragrance coming from it add to the cabin’s ambiance. #allthecozyfeels

23. laughter – i find myself laughing a lot these days – it’s such a lively, joyful feeling! laughing is truly one of my favorite things to do – to laugh until i cry! i am so looking forward to my friend eric, who lives in scotland, to come home for new year’s because he’s one of my favorite people to share a hearty laugh with! in september we celebrated my parent’s birthdays, which are only a week apart, by going to see bob marley the comedian at mechanics hall in worcester, ma. my dad was in hysterics watching him, and i was hysterics watching my dad! now when we get together it’s quite common to play some of his videos – it feels so connecting and loving to laugh all together! sometimes if i need a break during the work day i’ll watch a video or two in the car in-between drives – i probably look like a crazy lady because i’m rolling in laughter in my seat all alone, but i could care less! it really helps to lighten the load of life’s stress! if you are not familiar with him, i highly recommend checking him out or attending one of his many east coast shows! #laughteristhebestmedicine

22. goals – since my early 30’s i have made an annual list of goals for myself around the week of my birthday – it’s a list of smaller and bigger goals that equal the number of years that i am (for example, this year it will be 37 goals for my 37th birthday). i didn’t take it as seriously this year as i have in the past, and i’m excited that my birthday is only a few months away so i can start all over again! i think goal setting is quite healthy, and when it’s written down it’s more apt to happen (and, i love checking the items off). it also helps to keep me focused during my free time. if there is something that i’ve identified as important, hence why it’s on the list, i’ll try to figure out when i can accomplish it or devise a plan to make it happen. knowing what i’m working towards is motivating! some goals require little effort or planning (i.e. new glasses may happen at a yearly eye exam), but some bigger goals (i.e. a vacation or paying for or off a bigger ticket item) may require some pre-planning steps. if there is a goal that i have repeated and it is still not fully executed, this gives me an opportunity to dive deeper into my own self-awareness – perhaps it’s an area that needs to be more seriously addressed. this upcoming year i plan to focus on both new goals as well as the few unaccomplished goals, and consider the reasons why this has happened and what i need to do to finally accomplish them. one recurring goal that i have been able to stick to, and that i am proud of, is having a scheduled lady date at least once each month – love my girls! #goaldigger

21. food – i love food as much as i love sleep! i am grateful to 1) have ease around access to food. in 2005 i spent time living in kenya, africa volunteering at nyumbani children’s home and as a social worker i was able to visit kibera, considered the world’s largest slum village. from having had this experience, i know how fortunate we are to have this luxury, and to 2) have good genes with a high metabolism because i sure can eat – a lot and fast! i am usually the first one done a meal, and i prefer not to share meals because i am totally capable of completing a meal on my own – ha! that being said, i am not a fan of cooking for one, and since i am on the road a lot for work it’s hard to manage cooking without being wasteful. one thing that i found very helpful over the past year has been prepared meal delivery services. my naturopathic physician and acupuncturist, dr. angela mccann at avena, actually prescribed me azuluna (sourced locally in my area) so that i would try it. i found it to be quite helpful for the stage of life i am at. the food quality, cost, taste, portions, and ease of it all was great! i stopped this a few months ago because i was working so much that i wasn’t home enough to eat the meals. now that i am home a bit more during the week i have decided to get back into this, only this time with freshly. i have some friends who use this and enjoy it, so thought i’d try another one to compare. my first delivery is set to arrive tomorrow (12/12)! i am looking forward to reprioritizing my nutritional well-being! #stayfreshstaysalty

20. support – to recognize when i need it ; to be brave enough to ask for it ; to carve time out for it ; to do my best to receive it ; to be with it ; to become stronger because of it ; to appreciate it ; to offer it. #peoplehelpthepeople

19. entrepreneurship – i have always had an entrepreneurial mindset. i think it all started as a young girl 1) watching my dad operate his business(es), and 2) being inspired by my CCD teacher at church. i remember thinking she looked like a business woman in her high heels, and from then on that’s what i wanted to be! thankfully my hospice roles have allowed for this to become a reality in a few ways, but it doesn’t stop there! believe it or not, i owned and seasonally operated a hotdog cart outside of my dad’s package store (after college might i add)! “if you find a better dog, eat it” was the slogan! 😂 i sold hot dogs by day, and managed the store by night. and it’s with this same entrepreneurial spirit that i started the SALT studio. although both businesses are now closed, i remain proud of my willingness to try something new and step outside of my comfort zone, of my work ethic, and of my ability to gratefully reflect back on these experiences. #noshameinmygame

18. kiddos – as someone without children, having connections to kids means a lot to me. i am close with my cousin, holly’s, kids, whose son gave me the name “coco” many years ago. 🥰 i love being a godmother to her daughter, who is basically my mini me! we have an annual tradition of celebrating our bond by spending a day or overnight together. we call it “goddess day,” and we both look forward to it every year! for christmas, when asked what she wanted she answered, “clothes or a weekend at coco’s” – melts my heart! i also love being “auntie courtney” to my only nephew, gavin. he’s such a love bug and his laugh is as contagious as his mother’s (my sister, mel)! i hope as the years pass my connection with the kiddos remains close and that they will always see me as someone they can turn to!  #cocolovesyou

17. my mer-tribe – this one is inspired by today’s (12/15) visit to the hair salon. many thanks to those who help keep me feeling good inside and out! i will share a post on them sometime soon – stay tuned! #mermazing

16. experiencing boredom – i prioritized relaxation this year when i wasn’t working. over the summer i had a beach pass to second beach in middletown, ri and tried to spend as much time there after work and on weekends, doing what someone i know likes to call, “experiencing boredom.” the beach is by far my favorite place to unwind and restore my energy. in cooler months like this, when i’m pumping vitamin d instead of vitamin sea, i have other ways to self-nurture and meet my need of rest. over the last few weeks i have been enjoying time at home, visiting with friends and family, writing, and binge-watching shows. i have urban sweat, at raffa yoga, on the mind, and hope to get there soon as it’s one of my favorite places to go to just BE. this past year i was also able to finally visit kripalu, and i would love to return sometime soon. on saturday (12/14) i spent the day with my college roommate, danielle, who i had not seen in almost a year! it was so much fun to catch up, reminisce, and browse shops together. it felt as though it had been a really long time since i was leisurely out and about! it seems the more i make and take the time to relax the more refreshed i feel, and the more supportive i am of my soul’s desire to slow down and enjoy the present moment. i look forward to more days like this in the year ahead! #be.here.now.

15. appreciation – i am indebted to my parents in so many ways. they have been so generous to me my entire life, and i so appreciate them – so much so that i am often moved to tears thinking about it. i think it’s so important when thinking about appreciation to – reflect on it ; name it ; share it, without expectation ; write it ; model it ; be guided by it ; receive it ; maybe even cry because of it ; and remember it. over the past year i’ve tried to be better at expressing appreciation. this has looked something like randomly calling or texting friends to express how much our connection means to me and how much i value their presence in my life. in NVC, it’s just as important to identify needs that are being met, and to appreciate and celebrate them, as much we identify needs that are not being met, as both help us with our self-awareness. #iseeyouandithankyou

14. recovery – and by this i mean how well i have been able to bounce back after set-backs. in some situations this year i was able to easily recover, while others, not so much. one of my greatest accomplishments has been not beating myself up over situations of struggle, and especially those that were hard to quickly overcome. this is a real shift for me compared to past years. shame – the feeling of not being good enough – is real, and it can be so energy draining and damaging. choosing to not live life from a place of shame, but more so from a place of curiosity, ownership and acceptance, is something that i’ve been working on. it really helps with healing and recovery in so many situations. for example, last week i did something embarrassing. i, unknowingly, replied all to an e-mail with 230 people on it. i thought i was forwarding a networking invitation and message to my team, but instead e-mailed everyone! 🤦🏼‍♀️thankfully, i didn’t say anything too inappropriate, but i was so embarrassed and anxious that i felt the need to recover by sending out a follow-up e-mail, sharing about the incident and getting feedback from supportive people, and then showing my face at the event today (12/17). now i am fortunately able to get a few good laughs about it! but, the best thing about the situation was that i was able to shift from feeling embarrassed and anxious, to tender and empowered. shame, anxiety and acceptance, have been great teachers along this unmapped, sometimes calm and sometimes choppy, course to recovery. #thecomebackisalwaysstrongerthanthesetback

13. morning comforts – since i am so not a morning person (and it doesn’t help that i have to wake giorgio up every morning and drag him outside – that’s my boy!), some of the following help with starting my days on the right foot! sunlight ; water (pond 😉) views ; fresh daily eye contacts ; hot showers ; white bath sheetsRH robe ; ugg slippers ; spotify SALT station ; bose speakers ; fresh flowers ; facial steamer ; guided meditations ; my car ; a full tank of gas ; ray ban sunglasses ; sirius xm coffeehouse ; black tea with milk and sugar ; breakfast shakes or açaí bowls. #itsagreatdaytobealive

12. money – i am proud to consider myself to be a hardworking woman, and i credit the tremendous worth ethic modeled to me by both of my parents. i believe in the saying, “work hard, play harder!” i enjoy nice things, therefore it’s important to me that i make enough money in order to live the life i have imagined and created for myself. in being completely transparent, this hasn’t always been something that i’ve been successful with – living within my means. debt has at times been part of my story – “operation paydown” is how my friends and advisors know it be. shame has often surfaced around this, however today i embrace this as a part of me, and use it as motivation to create lasting change. believe me, in the past just the thought of naming this here would have been devastating to me, but now that i have changed my view on my spending (in that it was meeting a need), it’s easier to name it, own it, and share the treasures that have helped and continue to help me cope with it. i realized that my financial situation wouldn’t change if i didn’t make thought and habit changes around spending / saving. i had to create a new emotional relationship with money. my focus for 2020 is to continue to form a more healthy relationship with money, and for the first time, i must admit that i’m excited about it! this was the topic of my last therapy session and my request was that we regularly check in on this area. because i have the self-awareness that this is a part of me, from time-to-time it will need tending to (like any other emotional wound) – totally normal! we also decided that occasionally sharing about it with others, because this struggle is not unique to me, may perhaps help to normalize talking about it and help with healing around it – for myself and others. #financialpeace

11. helpful folk – this morning (12/21) i woke up to no heat. i tried to reset the furnace to no avail. i called my dad and then ryan, my heating/plumbing guy (owner of anything plumbing – highly recommend). he came out before a christmas party and returned after it to fix it for me! i am so appreciative of 1) my dad, who is the most handy man i have ever met, and his connections with people who seem to always be around and readily available to offer a helping hand, and 2) the people that help me get by … whether it’s help with my cabin, my cars, my finances, my body, mind, etc … it’s so important to have people to turn to, and i am so appreciative of those who have rendered help along the way so that i can live feeling more safe and comfortable. #igetbywithalittlehelpfrommyfriends

10. home – i bought my cabin 2 1/2 years ago with the intention of turning it into my 1st rental property. my dad has many rentals, and since i’ve always wanted to follow in his shoes and i have a genuine interest in real estate, buying this was fulfilling one of my life goals. hgtv is one of my favorite tv channels and i sometimes wish i went to a trade school for carpentry, no joke (think nicole curtis, rehab addict)! i love reburished things, the mix of old and new, and the results that come from a keen eye and hard, hands-on work! sometimes if i can’t sleep i check out redfin, zillow, trulia or loopnet to browse available properties until i pass out. i decided to move into the cabin following a break-up, which also happened to be around the same time that i got a job back in rhode island after my position with the company i was with for 9 years went through an acquisition and my middle management position was eliminated. since the pond is part in ct and part in ri, moving in simply made sense. the cabin transformation is something that allowed for my creative self-expression, and the outcome is something that i am mostly proud of (keep in mind it was done with rental property quality renovations). i’ve more recently finished painting the bathroom and it’s now fully furnished (sans television). i have to say, it FINALLY FEELS LIKE HOME! i never thought i would say that here! a log cabin is far from what i would ever imagine for myself, but here we are! the updates started with a new roof, insulating the outside logs, and then covering them with grey vinyl shingle siding with black shutters to make it look a bit more modern. next, the dark stained logs on the inside were painted bright white, and we left the ceilings and beams dark for contrast. the wagon wheel ceiling fixture in the main room was removed and replaced with a dual fan fixture, and new floors were installed. the kitchen and bathrooms were updated (kinda / sorta), and new light fixtures with edison lightbulbs were hung throughout. my bedroom was built and the final touch of a sliding barn door for entry was installed – my fav! then my best friend, jules (she really is a jewel), and i constructed a custom walk-in closet, course! my model sailboat found its home on the mantel, and the (ongoing) decorating touches were made. today, the space gives off a cozy mariner cabin feel. when i’m cuddled up by the wood stove in the winter or when the windows are open letting the summer breeze in, i find peace, as it mimics a quaint retreat in the middle of nowhere (well, because it really is in the middle of nowhere) – far from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. i am truly grateful to have a little place of my own to call “home.” 🏚 #theresnoplacelikehome

9. my jewel – it’s now 9 days until the ball drops on the new decade – how exciting! my favorite number is 9, and in honor of this i’d like to honor my most favorite friend, my jewel 💎 – julie! jules, j-bird, julie b, julie t, my best friend since the 3rd grade! she was the 1st friend i made when i moved from plainfield, ct to brooklyn. we went to grade school, high school, and grad school together, and we even work together! the laughs ; the cries ; the calls ; the nights out ; the nights in ; trips ; concerts ; relationships; families ; gains ; losses ; big moments ; minute moments – all made better with her by my side. capturing here what we’ve been through and shared could never do our friendship justice! she’s my constant in an ever changing world, my true anchor, and i don’t know what i would do without her! it’s because of her that i’ve known unconditional love and support outside of my family (although she’s basically my family, let’s be real), and for this i am forever grateful. 👯‍♀️   #everyblondeneedsabrunette

8. small moments – inspiration is all around, whether it be from family ; friends ; colleagues ; mentors ; posts ; books ; articles ; lyrics ; podcasts ; shows ; documentaries; movies ; art ; decor ; fashion ; cards ; images ; quotes ; observations; conversations ; or random acts of kindness. each day on my drive home from my hospice work, as i decompress and reflect on the day, if i can say that i helped at least one person to breathe easier, even just for a few moments, i consider having done my job for the day. i truly believe it’s the small moments of that matter most! keeping an eye out or ear on inspirational things moves, motivates, and brings meaning into my life. #everydaymaynotbegoodbutthereisgoodineveryday

7. gifts – merry christmas all! today (12/25) i most appreciate the gift of togetherness. i wrote a christmas card to my mom & dad thanking them for all of the gifts they’ve given me, especially those that are not tangible. i shared that one of my greatest gifts this year has been feeling more connected to my mom, and i shared how grateful i am for my dad – for year-after-year being the most consistent, greatest guy in my life. one of my favorite gifts to give this year were passes to tubaslide so that we could all celebrate family, fun, tubing, and togetherness! may you all enjoy this magical day and feel more connected to those around you, or even to yourself. there were a chunk of past holidays when i wrapped myself most in love, and i believe it is self-awareness and self-love that has helped me to be able to better connect and enjoy time with my family today. #bettertogether

6. generosity – giving is one of my most favorite things to do – i absolutely love the experience “seeing” someone and putting a smile on their face! more recently however, with a focus on my financial peace, i realize that my generosity has at times been at a personal price to pay. i am now leaning into other ways of being generous. although it’s been a bit different for me to refrain from giving as i traditionally have, i am enjoying exploring new ways to offer generosity – giving my time (for example, i recently volunteered for an organization that gifts nursing home residents christmas presents) ; lending a helping hand ; having a nonjudgmental ear ; sharing of expertise ; engaging in empathic relating ; or even sending positive energy. a nighttime ritual that i enjoy, which encompasses giving in a different way, is participating in loving-kindness (metta) meditations (here’s a favorite). with this, i am able to offer myself love (or some form of self-kindness), the same for another, and then the same for all of humanity. i am also trying to pay attention and note the ways in which generosity shows up in my life as offered to me by others. the more i pay attention, on purpose, the more self-aware i am of what feels supportive and supporting to others. this all helps with living a more conscious and abundant life! #gratitude+giving=abundance

5. creativity – today (12/27) and monday i will spend time at work preparing for the upcoming year. one of my favorite things to do is create! it allows for both my passion and compassion to come to life! i will be developing programming content and plotting outreach ideas to ensure we remain the most innovative hospice in ri. much of the work that i developed over the years started out as crazy ideas, and i am so grateful to those who trusted, listened, supported, and funded them, turning them into realities. some of the creative programs that i am most proud of, that i leave as my hospice legacy, include – having brought the virtual dementia tour to ri, beginning back in 2013 ; hosting free movie screenings at local showcase cinemas to entertain while educating on various elder / end-of-life topics ; bringing  rendever virtual reality to my current company, making us the first community-based hospice in the country to use it ; and supporting the hospice and bereavement equine-assisted healing program, also offered at my current company. to date, my hospice career highlight was when i co-created a program that became the 1st non-corporate initiated program to be rolled out at the largest hospice company in the country. for about three years i created the content and traveled to 46 offices teaching, training, and sharing my ideas and creations. it was an amazing opportunity where i worked with top leaders from the clinical, operations, sales, marketing, and design teams. this year my favorite hospice moment was bringing a gentleman living with dementia to the beach using the adaptable beach wheelchair. i look forward to days like these, where i am most in my element – creating, packaging, and helping from behind the scenes! i bring all that i learned from these experiences with me to the table today! #creativemindsinspireothers

4. boundaries – when i look at the need for self-respect, i recognize that boundaries often closely follow. over the past year there are a few areas where i could have done better with establishing more clear and healthy boundaries. as mentioned, i’m always a work in progress! i am working on improving how i identify when something is or is not working for me. this involves asking 1) what am i feeling, 2) what need is being met or unmet, and 3) does this align with my values, and setting a boundary if needed. it’s time to put myself back at the top, and not accept less than what i want for myself and my life. #lackofboundariesinviteslackofrespect

3. music – ahhh, the sweet melodies that speak for my soul. music is truly a universal treasure, and i tap into it daily! i am glad that i got to go to quite a few concerts this year, in particular ray lamontagne (for the 5th time) and lewis capaldi. this is my parting song for the decade … 💞 #amen

2. NVC – this year i took my practice of nonviolent communication (NVC) more seriously than i ever have in the past. i also grew the most as a person in 2019, and i credit this to my practice. i use NVC as my guide. when anxiety arises, when i can’t understand why i or someone else did something, or when i need more clarity about what i want in my life, i turn to NVC. it has basically become the only way i can try to interpret this crazy world we live in without hardening my heart. #allbehaviorsmeetaneed

1. ease – the need for ease has been my main focus in the last quarter of this year and it will continue with me into the new year / decade. it has been my best measuring tool to asses if something is working for me. i am asking myself quite often – does this (person, place, thing) bring me closer to ease? if yes, great! i try to remain open to further exploration or deepening of my connection, and if no, i try to look at why and further assess to ensure i continue to live in alignment with what i value. sometimes the result may require boundary setting and / or distance, and that’s okay. i don’t need to be for everyone or stand for everything, and vice versa. as this day ends, i release all dis-ease i’ve endured and humbly own any that i’ve caused. i wish everyone well and i carry forward with wide-open arms ready to receive situations and interactions that bring more ease and joy into my life. #mayeasebewithmeevermore