Life Giving, Life Draining

I stumbled upon a new podcast called the The Simple Show with Tsh Oxenreider. I love this podcast because she talks about living a minimalist lifestyle, but not in the traditional sense of owning 4 shirts and 2 pairs of pants, bare minimum kind of way (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). She interviews people about living simply and what that looks like for them. Through her podcast I have stumbled upon many other podcasts that I also love, one being The Next Right Thing with Emily P. Freeman.

Emily is an writer, and I can tell from her podcast style that I’m going to really enjoy her books as well. In episode 3 she talks about making a “life giving and live draining list” instead of the typical pro/con list. I loved this idea of meditating over what filled you and what did not over the past time frame. She recommends doing this seasonally, but you could do it more or less often to fit your needs.

I find myself feeling so inspired by my podcasts, but have been “un-actionable” (not sure if that’s a word!). Well by golly I’m tired of filling my cup, feeling so energized and uplifted, and then letting the rest of my world take over. Spiritually and emotionally I need to start taking and using the wonderful advice that I’m given and crave; otherwise it’s all for not. Emily recommends making the life giving/life draining list seasonally, and although summer isn’t quite over I figured this would be a good time to review the summer season.

So here it goes…

Life Giving and Life Draining List

Summer 2017

Life Draining

(Because I like to end on a positive note, I’ll start with what was draining)

  • Cleaning the house to sell
  • Re cleaning the house because it seems like we can’t keep it together
  • Trying to keep my plants alive without a green thumb
  • Feeling anxious about leaving Brody (my pitbull!) at doggy daycare for boarding for an extended weekend for the first time
  • Not setting clearer boundaries with the length of family visits
  • Complaining about a problem longer than solving the problem actually takes
  • Feeling like the household chores and duties are not divided evenly between my husband and I
  • Not keeping a morning routine
  • Learning the quirks of working with my husband from home
  • Balancing working from home and living at home
  • Still feeling like I don’t fully treat myself like an adult or trust myself

Life Giving

  • Leaving the teaching profession!
  • Donating all of my teaching clothes and then some
  • Journeying through self exploration
  • Finding my passions
  • Listening to my podcasts
    • Soul Searching and Personal Development: Vibrant Happy Women with Jen Riday; The Simple Show with Tsh Oxenreider; The Next Right Thing with Emily P. Freeman
    • Entrepreneurship: Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman; Screw the Nine to Five Podcast; The Soul Fueled CEO; Bringing Business to Retail with Salena Knight; Flipped Lifestyle Podcast with Shane and Jocelyn Sams
    • Just for fun: The Longest Shortest Time; Serial; S-Town; How To Be A Girl; Invisibilia; Snap Judgement; This American Life
  • Traveling to Colorado for my best friends wedding
  • Hiking the Flat Irons in Boulder and the waterfalls in Upstate New York
  • Painting the kitchen with mom and staging my house
  • Blogging again!
  • Walking Brody and taking him to the dog park
  • Buying noise cancelling headphones
  • Having my parents down for visits
  • Starting the n = many zero carb study
  • Checking my blood sugar again and being more strict with what I eat
  • Meeting up with a friend for dinner and coffee twice!
  • Talking on the phone more with my best friend
  • Saying no to hand-me-downs or “third party clutter”
  • Feeling independent in my work and like I’m starting to own my duties
  • Working with my husband
  • Being a stay-at-home dog mom
  • Visiting the animals at the SPCA

I’m sure I could keep going. Doing this made me realize that it was much harder to write what was life draining than life giving. This was not on purpose, but it gives me a sense that overall I’m feeling more positive than negative. I predict that had I done this for the winter or spring it would have been the opposite because I was so undeniably miserable in my profession.

I can tell a huge difference in my self-esteem, confidence, outlook, mentality, and stress level from leaving the classroom. It was definitely one of the best decisions I ever made, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.

If you’re feeling like you need a mindset adjustment or a check-in with yourself, I recommend making a Life Giving and Life Draining list. You might just feel a little lighter.

~Jesse

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