It is the week of New Years! We are ending the year 2019, and heading into the roaring 20’s. I don’t know about you guys but the year 2019 flew by. I wish I could say it was MY BEST YEAR YET! But, it definitely had some major bumps, more like giant pot holes, more like Grand Canyon sized gaps, and I am so ready to put this year behind me. I know a lot of people are.
It always seems this time of year everyone is just so excited to start another year. It is like a clean beginning, and then by March everyone kind of just tapers off of that excitement and then the memes start, and the complaining starts, and everyone kind of just shuffle back into their normal routine. I know I am overly guilty of this myself. I always make a resolution, it is usually to live a healthier lifestyle. Which I am proud to say, I did accomplish quitting smoking this year! Yay to me! That was always one of my biggest. My husband and I also really concentrated on our eating habits, we have slowly transitioned to a more plant based diet, and I am really enjoying that. I am going to start sharing some recipes and tips and tricks to a clean eating lifestyle, but that is a different post, I wont bore you with that just yet.
I am a huge news junkie, I watch the news every morning, I read news articles all day, I end my day by watching the news. I follow along with stories, and it seems this year, the world has really just gone mad. Between hate crimes, mass shootings, political issues, climate issues, natural disasters, people hurting each other, people hurting the ones they once loved. I mean it can be a bit overwhelming at times. I came to the conclusion a few weeks ago that maybe instead of making a resolution about working out more, or reading more, or whatever else I never fully commit to, I am going to make a resolution about loving more.
What do you mean Lindsey? Is probably what you are thinking. I know when I write it out, it seems a little weird. Love is such a large term. Love can mean so many different things. But, I really feel what our society is lacking right now is love. I know so many people who just feel lost, that they know they need to do something, but where do you start? So I am going to break down how I plan to love more, in there year 2020.
I am crazy guilty of being a horrible listener, you can ask my husband, it drives him crazy. I tend to get really excited when someone talks and then I cut in and start my own conversation. I also tend to get into my own little world sometimes and just do not hear what the other person is saying. Showing that you care what the other person has to say is a huge form of loving more, even if you do not agree with what they are saying. Let’s repeat that last part, even if you DO NOT AGREE with what they are saying. It is one of our biggest flaws in society these days. You can never agree to disagree. With everyone on social media having a opinion, it seems no one else is allowed to have a differing opinion. Along with that, it seems like people aren’t having actual conversations anymore. I don’t know how many news stories I have seen of neighbors who lived next to mass shooters, or friends of someone who hurt another, who really never listened to that person. I mean truly listen to them. How many tragedies could be avoided if someone took the time to listen to another persons problems?
“More and more I’ve come to understand that listening is one of the most important things we can do for one another. Whether the other be an adult or a child, our engagement in listening to who that person is can often be our greatest gift. Whether that person is speaking or playing or dancing, building or singing or painting, if we care, we can listen.”-Mr. Rogers
The great Fred Rogers is the epitome of Love. He is a man who devoted his whole life, to simply listening to others, and our world was a better place for it. Listening isn’t just about listening to someone talk, it is about hearing what that person has to say. It is about showing them that you are interested in what they have to say. That you hear them. Listening is one of the biggest forms of spreading love. So, for the year 2020, let’s work on listening to each other more.
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
Forgiveness, one of the hardest things we humans have to do. Forgiving someone who hurt you is crucial to spreading more love. Also, forgiving yourself for things you have done is crucial in learning to love yourself. You can not move forward in life if you do not forgive those who have wronged you, and you can not move forward in life if you do not forgive yourself for the people you have wronged. I know I struggle with forgiving sometimes, it is really easy to hold onto the past and to dwell on things that were not in your control. It is also easy to be hard on yourself from mistakes you have made. Once you learn to forgive, your progress on moving forward begins. You can not love if you do not forgive. You will be forever stuck in that moment, and the pain will overtake you. Your heart will become hard, and the love you could be spreading is being blocked by resentment. So, take some time and think about things that you need to forgive. Whether it is something you need to forgive yourself for, or something you need to forgive another for. I promise you, the weight that it has been putting on your shoulders will feel so much lighter. So for the year 2020, let’s work on forgiving more.
Slowing down more:
“If you’re always racing to the next moment, what happens to the one you’re in? Slow down and enjoy the moment you’re in and live your life to the fullest.”
― Nanette Mathews
We live in a society where everyone is going a mile a minute and taking the time for ourselves or others seems near impossible. Between carpools, appointments, work projects, kids activities, and family obligations, slowing down seems like something we are unable to achieve. Slowing down and showing someone your time though, is showing them love. Slowing down, and having time for yourself, is showing self love. I read a article that had some statistics that families today only spend a total of a hour a day together. Only a hour. I don’t think we fully understand the destruction that is doing to our kids, or the destruction that is doing to our relationships. We are making it a point to not slow down and spend time with the ones we love, and when that happens, the loneliness spreads. Our children deserve our time. Our loved ones deserve our time. We can not spread more love to others, if we do not take the time to show them that we care. So some things we can do to slow down more:
- Have dinner together as a family
- Plan a date night with your spouse
- Plan a family game night once a week
- Read together instead of watching tv
- Plan a few extra minutes in the morning to talk
- Plan a time at night when everyone talks about their day
Just a few ideas, I could go on for hours about that one. The idea of it is to reevaluate what you think is important that day, and slow down and look at what is actually important that day. Slowing down and showing that the other person is important to you, is a great way to love more. So for the year 2020 let’s slow down.
“Being connected to everything has disconnected us from ourselves and the preciousness of this present moment.”
― L.M. Browning
Ugh ooohhhh, she said it. I knew she was going to say it, and she said it. PUT DOWN YOUR PHONES! GET OFF SOCIAL MEDIA! There is an entire real world that is going on around you, and we are missing it because we are glued to our devices. There are small acts of kindness that are happening every minute of every day and we do not see them because we are looking at a screen, of someone else’s pretend life. Loving more, is unplugging more. This one kind of correlates with all the others, because when we stick ourselves to a screen, we can not listen, we can not slow down, we can not take the time for ourselves to forgive, it is all a circle. So put down your phone, and show the person that you have their attention. Put down your phone and help another person in need, without posting it for likes. Put down your phone and take in all the wonders of things that are happening right in front of your face. You will not learn to love yourself if you are always comparing yourself to others, and you will not show love to others if you can not even look up at them while they are talking. So set down your phone, and get on the floor and play with your child. Put down your phone and help your spouse. Put down your phone, and reconnect with the people who need your love the most. For the year 2020, lets unplug more.
I was at the store a few weeks ago with a cranky toddler and a cart full of groceries. I was so over shopping that I honestly was in the zone to just get him into the car, and get home. As I was walking out of the store I noticed an older gentleman who was having trouble getting his walker out of the car. I pushed the cart over, and offered to help him. He was so grateful, and his eyes just lit up. It probably took more no more then 15 seconds to help him. As he waved at the toddler and smiled making him laugh, you could feel the happiness and the love in the air. It was not a huge deal, and I could of been like the 20 other people just walking by him, but I took the time, I slowed down, I listened to my gut, and because I wasn’t staring at my phone, I saw him. Loving more is not hard. But, loving more could change the world for the better, one small act a day.
So I challenge you all, for the year 2020, to just love more. Love others, love yourself, love the ones who are the hardest to love. You will be surprised how much better you feel, and how much better you are making the world.
Happy New Year!
What are some ways you plan to love more in 2020? Feel free to write them in the comments!!