As I’ve gotten older I’ve noticed a definite shift in my thinking. I’m pretty sure that’s normal, because with age comes wisdom (most of the time) and with wisdom comes changes. The main change in my thinking hasn’t been a desire to do things, like cross items off a bucket list, but rather the determination not to do certain things. There are things I will not do anymore, and here are 3 of them.
I will not put off buying new jeans. It’s getting colder outside and that means I can’t wear my shorts every day. I’m going to have to put on long pants. And for me, long pants means jeans. There are four or five pairs of jeans hanging in my closet right this minute, and none of them fit. They were tight when I laundered them and hung them up in the spring, but now I can’t get them on at all. I went through the entire summer with the intent to lose some weight so I could wear those jeans when it got cool again, but instead I put on a few more pounds. And you know what? That’s okay. Is it ideal? No, because I don’t feel as well as I did when my weight was lower. My old football injury (yep, it’s really a football injury!) hurts more, and I find that I get winded a whole lot easier now. And I’ve decided those things are more important reasons to drop a few pounds than whether or not my jeans fit. I spent the whole summer putting off buying jeans in a larger size, but now I’m just going to go and get myself some. I not only need them, but I’ve finally, after a lifetime of worrying about what I look like in them, realized the size doesn’t matter. What matters is having clothes that fit and that I feel comfortable wearing. Yeah, I’m still going to try to drop some weight, but not so I can get in those smaller size jeans. I’ll do it so I can be more healthy and feel better.
I will not wait for the perfect time. You see, there’s never going to be a “perfect time” to do anything. It took a while for me to realize this, but now that I know it I feel a freedom and a sense of peace I never had before. There’s never going to be a perfect time to release a new book, to take a few days off and go on a road trip, to paint the kitchen, to have a child, get married, or buy a house. Perfect time doesn’t exist, and if you wait for this mythical time then all you have at the end is regret that you didn’t do what you wanted to do, and now it’s too late. I’ve stopped waiting for the perfect time, and life is so much more fun now!
I will not let the opinions of others affect the way I feel. This is a hard one, especially in this day of social media where everyone gets online and throws out opinion as fact. For me, political posts are the worst. Hey, I’m a normal human being, so I can’t help but think that political opinions that differ from mine are complete blithering, moronic idiocy. There have been times I’ve read posts from my Facebook friends and thought, “How can someone so smart be so stupid about this?” I don’t tell them that, though, because I like these people. They’re my friends. I just happen to totally disagree with them about politics and social issues. But reading their posts makes me either mad (because they’ve called people who think like me stupid, and that means they just called me stupid) or depressed (because it’s another post in a newsfeed full of posts that’s negative, or angry, or gloating, or self-justified.) And you know what? Reading or hearing other people’s opinions has never changed anyone’s mind. Ever. (That’s another reason I keep my mouth shut. They don’t want to hear my opinion any more than I want to hear theirs.) So instead of reading those posts I scroll right past them. Yeah, I do mutter “fool” under my breath, but I scroll. And if that doesn’t work, then I utilize that handy little “hide all posts” feature on Facebook, and the “unfollow” feature on Instagram. Sure, I miss seeing their personal photos and posts about things not political, but their negativity is wearing me down, and I will not allow that to happen anymore.
It all comes down to being happy, right? I will no longer do things that make me unhappy, or let other people make me unhappy. And not doing those things I’ve listed (and a bunch of other things not listed!) has made me a much happier person overall. I like it.
What about you? Have you stopped doing certain things that make you unhappy? Has it helped your outlook overall? Share in the comments!
And speaking of being happy, the new and improved Crimson and Clover goes live in just three days! It’s available for pre-order right now for just 99¢, too. You can read the first chapter and find all the pre-order links on the Crimson and Clover page.
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