Tiny Eden

Friday, February 18, 2011

Brown Lettuce and Blue Cheese!

So, I have gotten thru the first 10 days of my Happiness Project. During this time, I have been doing a lot of evaluating. Evaluating my actions and reactions, what makes me happy and what turns me into a ticking time bomb, the effects that my moods have had on others, and my relationships. I notice that I have had a tendency of using up all of my nice and happy on others and my husband bears the brunt of the Unhappiness Project. If he asks me to do something for him, such as make his lunch for the next day just after I settled on to the couch after working, or cleaning the kitchen, I make it very well known that this is not something that I am all that interested in doing. Although, I think I was kind of successful the other nite when I got home from work to find Sam stretched out on the couch watching CSI relaxing after he finished all of the leftovers leaving nothing for me to eat for dinner. I didn't blow up. I just served myself the remaining 5 lettuce leaves that could be salvaged out of the browning bag of salad and slathered it with blue cheese dressing.

I have noticed that I have decreased my complaining at work - I try not to complain when my body parts ache from moving someone, I have decreased declaring how tired I am, at the end of the day, I no longer tell the oncoming shift what a tough day the day shift had. When the resource nurse the other nite said that she heard it was a tough day, I just said, "No, it wasn't too bad." She looked at me with a suprised look on her face and I told her that we all got thru the day in one piece and that was good enough for me! When the physicians order all of the wrong tests and I get phone calls from every single department in the hospital telling me they can't do what was ordered because it was entered incorrectly, I do still get a little irritated. I am human still!

Part of this happiness project has been evaluating friendships. While it is nice in a perfect world to always think that people will be your friends forever, it does not always work that way. Moving on from relationships and friendships is sad, but it also helps with finding happiness. People make new friends, outgrow old ones, find more fun, new exciting ones, and move on. It happens and that is ok. Sometimes you can just give it the best effort you have and after that, it is time to move on. It is not giving up or accepting defeat, it is respecting differences.

You want to know what I part of the organizing I have actually achieved, don't you? Well, it has not been much. Things have been very hectic in our house. Cheyenne has had to go to the vet almost once a week and we got the news today that she has Cushing's Disease. The medication can be rather harsh on her, but we are optimistic that she will be ok. Work has had several call outs, and I worked some extra hours on Wednesday. I felt badly because I was not able to stay longer than 3 hours - that was the day Cheyenne went in for her blood tests. They called and asked if I could come in on Thursday as well, but I was zonked out when they called thanks to the sleeping pill I took. Sam is back on home iv's. The source of some of his recurring illness is coming from our house. More home projects, fun! One of the months further down the road is home imrovements, so it looks like it will be coming sooner than later. But I have succeeded in organizing some things. I have changed all of the hangers in the master bedroom closet to Huggable Hangers, I organized the closet in general, put the dust ruffles on the beds, follow my planner, make my lunch at nite, just to name a few.

I hope I can inspire others to follow along with my Happiness Project. There are some of my co-workers who have showed some interest. I definitely think that people can benefit from this! I would love to hear feedback if anyone else is doing their own Happiness Project.

"Being happy is something you have to learn. I often surprise myself by saying "Wow, this is it. I guess I'm happy. I got a home I love. A career that I love. I'm even feeling more and more at peace with myself." If there's something else to happiness, let me know. I'm ambitious for that, too." - Harrison Ford

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

How much happiness can my heart hold?

Holy smokes! It has been a really, really long time since I have posted on here. Our wedding was just magical. It was better than I ever could have imagined. We were surrounded by all of the people we love and care about. I will write and post pictures about the wedding and our fantabulous honeymoon in a later blog.

For this blog, I wanted to share the new journey I am embarking on. It is called "The Happiness Project". This is based on a book, "The Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin. While I will be using her book as a guideline, I will not be following her project to a T. Obviously, she and I have different things in life that make us happy. But there are some areas that did overlap, so it was nice to get some concrete ideas on how to achieve certain things.

I want to start off by saying that I am already happy. I have a wonderful, loving husband, a fantastic, loyal dog, a beautiful house, my dream job - the list goes on. But, I do feel like there is always more room for improvement. Honestly, I feel like one can never be too happy. This journey lasts one year - and yes, I know that I am starting in the month of February and it is not the first day of the month, but as I was reading the book, I got a head start on the first month. I have been wanting to do this for about a year now, but with wedding planning, the holidays, etc, it was kind of difficult to dedicate myself to this. I know those just sound like excuses, but I really wanted to be able to put my all into it. That is just how important this is to me.

So what exactly does this entail? Each month, for the next 12 months, I am going to focus on a different aspect of my life. I already have them planned out, for the most part, but they might change, so I will post what the month's goal is at the beginning of the month. Some goals will be easier than others, but I guess that is like all projects. The author of the book has come up with 12 Personal Commandments that she follows on a daily basis. Competitive as I am, I of course, had to come up with 16 Personal Commandments.

My 16 Personal Commandments:
1. Be Marisa - Ok, so this one I took from the author, except hers was Be Gretchen.
2. Live each day to the fullest - make the most out of my days off. When you start to see the same re-runs of game shows, it is time to get off the couch and get moving!
3. Stop and smell the roses. BREATHE! - I even bought a freshly cut roses candle from Yankee Candle Company yesterday to honor this commandment. I also have a silver stone with BREATHE engraved on it.
4. Don't stew, don't pout, forget the bad stuff. - I hold on to things for way too long and just get more and more angry as the time goes. I am a perpetual pouter. Sam tells me at least once a day to stop pouting!
5. Be nice, be fair. - It is much easier to say something negative than to find the good in others. I already try to stay away from gossip, but sometimes it is not possible. I form opinions rather quickly so I need to start giving people a chance. Also, I need to stop saying mean things about the doctors because, without fail, they always appear 2 seconds later and I am paranoid that they were listening around the corner!
6. Be true, follow my heart. - I ask for every one's opinions about everything. I want a stamp of approval with everything. I need to start making my own decisions. I need to honor my creative side, do more arts and crafts, and nurture my passions.
7. Exude confidence, be fearless. - Again, I feel like this has to do with wanting a stamp of approval. I can be so timid about things and doubt myself. I need to go with the flow!
8. Surround myself with positive people. - I know a whole bunch of negative people and I really feel like it is time to weed them out. Not that it is completely their fault for my sometimes being negative, but it is hard for me to be happy when I have others complaining and dragging my down.
9. It is ok to say no! - And if I don't want to give you an explanation, I don't have to.
10. I can't please everyone. - I need to start worrying about my own feelings and if I don't want to do something, I'm not going to. Although, this does exclude stool samples, sputum samples, urine samples......well you get the point!
11. Spoil myself and those around me. - This does not necessarily mean with material items. Spoil with love, affection, kindness, caring! Although material things are nice every once in a while.
12. Believe in miracles. - A cure for CF and a baby are the 2 that I am focusing on. I want to become more in touch with my spirituality. I feel like I have strayed a little bit from my beliefs.
13. Laugh. - Laugh at myself and laugh at others (but not in a mean way!). Get more joy out of everything.
14. Look your best, act your best, feel your best. - I don't always straighten my hair, wear makeup, get dressed up. I whine, complain and am moody. I focus on feeling tired, stuffy, and sore. I need to act how I want to feel.
15. Everything will be ok. - Yesterday, I was on my way to my hair appointment, stressed out, running late, feeling overwhelmed. I was stopped at a light and looked to my left and saw a gigantic sign that was painted next to an art gallery. A plain white sign with black capital letters that read "Everything will be ok". And it will.
16. Remember love. - Love myself, love those around me, love nature, love it all!

For the month of February, the first task that I will be tackling is (drum roll, please!) Get it together, Marisa! What, you ask, is Get it together, Marisa!? I need to get organized, and fast. My recipes are in a gigantic accordion folder with no rhyme or reason, photos are in a huge Tupperware, my quotes and magazine clippings are mixed in with my recipes, Valentine's, St. Patrick's, Easter, 4th of July decorations are strewn across my basement, arts and crafts supplies litter our spare bedroom, towers of sweaters fill our closet, boxes of shoes and clothes clutter our spare bedroom closet, rapidly multiplying dust bunnies float across the floor. Do you get the picture? This month, I want to work on getting myself organized.

If anyone is interested on embarking on this journey with me, that would be great. I would love to hear about things other people want to work on. Perhaps some of the things others want to work on would benefit me as well. Success happens in groups! I am sure that you are all just dying to see my progress with this, so I will definitely post more often :-)

"Don't agonize - organize!" - Florynce Kennedy

"If you can organize your kitchen, you can organize your life." - Louis Parrish

“Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you” - Nathaniel Hawthorne