Posts tagged ‘Goals’

June 13, 2011

It’s Not About You

This week, we’re spending some time at the beach with our families, so blogging is taking a backseat.  We’ll be back in full force next week, hopefully with some photos and stories of family firsts!  In the meantime, I offer something I read lately that was good food for thought.

Enjoy the sunshine wherever you are!

***

In the midst of commencement season, I came across this article, aptly titled “It’s Not About You”, on the New York Times website.  It offers an honest and insightful perspective on the gaps between what this year’s graduating class has been taught in school and what they will need to succeed in the world.

Essentially, the point is made that while learning about yourself is important, it should be part of the everyday activity of your life—not something you go off and do on any variety of compartmentalized, romanticized journeys.  The people who have been great successes in our society are the ones who didn’t always do what made them happy, but did what needed to be done in heroic ways.

Op-ed columnist David Brooks writes, “Most people don’t form a self and then lead a life. They are called by a problem, and the self is constructed gradually by their calling.”

He goes on, “Fulfillment is a byproduct of how people engage their tasks, and can’t be pursued directly. . . . . The purpose in life is not to find yourself. It’s to lose yourself.”

Umm, isn’t that last bit a paraphrase of the Gospels?

I was encouraged to see someone talking so much sense about the state of our society, about the situation in which my and future generations will find themselves.  I’m also challenged as a parent by the obstacles Brooks rightly suggests we’ve placed in front of these future generations.

As a mother, too, this strikes a chord with me.  Motherhood is a journey, not a destination, and I grow every day by the way I approach my tasks, whether they are as clearly significant as one day choosing a school for Jacob or seemingly insignificant, like folding socks and peeling carrots.

I don’t know how long the full article will be posted, but get it while you can here:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/31/opinion/31brooks.html?src=ISMR_AP_LO_MST_FB

As always, I welcome your comments!

April 14, 2011

Blogiversary

If you know the tune, please sing along . . . .

 

Happy Blogiversay to you,
Happy Blogiversary to you,
Happy Blogiversary, YoungMarriedMom,
Happy Blogiversary to you!

 

Today is the one-year anniversary of my first real blog post, and I think that’s cause to celebrate!  If it weren’t Lent, this would definitely qualify as a cupcake holiday.  I’ll take a rain check.

 

First of all, thank you to readers who have been around since the beginning (or at least since I told you about YMM); your loyalty and enthusiasm have meant a great deal to me.  Thank you, too, to folks who have just found me.  Whether you’ve come by way of friends, or friends of friends, or even accidentally, I appreciate your stopping by and spending some time here.  I hope you have gained something from reading, and I hope you will continue to come back.  If you haven’t commented before, please do.  I love to hear from readers, and I would love to hear from YOU!

 

Secondly, I invite you to take advantage of some little buttons over there on the right.  One is for email subscriptions to the blog.  The other is for an RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed, which works through Google, Yahoo, and a couple of other programs to let you know when new posts are available.  I use this as a part of my Google homepage to keep track of blogs I read, and recommend it. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with the old-school route of bookmarking, either.

 

A year ago, I started blogging with the primary goal of writing consistently: three times a week, 500 words each time.  While I lagged over the summer, I came back strong at the end of they year, and stayed steady through this point in 2011.  Currently, I’m blogging five times a week, and I’ve eased up on my word count.  Now I consider a post successful when it completely communicates an idea I wanted to share, whether that’s simply with words, equal parts text and photos, or just photos with a couple of captions.  YoungMarriedMom has grown from a writing experiment into, dare I say, a real, live blog.

 

My second goal last year was to share my story—one that is not entirely singular, but not necessarily the norm, either.  From the kind words of some of my readers (thank you!), it seems my efforts on this front have been fruitful.  I write not only for other young, married moms—although I do have them in mind—but for anyone looking for a bit of humor, for an idea of what it’s like to dive into a new venture of some kind, or for something new to bring to prayer.  This goal remains strong as I launch into this second year of blogging.  Now that I’ve found my feet with a more relaxed structure, I hope my perspective remains relevant and my voice comes to ring even truer.

 

And my third goal was to do something that makes me happy.  Writing makes me happy.  Creating makes me happy.  I am grateful for an opportunity to regularly reflect on the drastic, but wonderful changes my life has undergone in the past year.  I am even more grateful for a generous audience who responds with encouragement, often when I find I need it the most.  Thank you, my readers, for making this year a very special one, and inspiring me to forge ahead into a second year of posting here at YoungMarriedMom.

 

About this time last year (give or take a few weeks), Jacob and I looked like this.

 

 

This year, we look like this.

 

 

I hope you’ll stick around to see what the next year holds.  Thank you for reading!

 

Sending virtual hugs your way,
Lindsay, aka YoungMarriedMom

February 14, 2011

Confession Monday

I have a confession.

 

I watch The Biggest Loser.  Sometimes while eating frozen pizza and ice cream.  Other times while eating carrot sticks and yogurt.  But all the time, loving it.

 

You may recall that the first time I watched this show was the night before I realized I was pregnant with Jacob (that was one of the pizza occasions).  I’m not sure if it’s the roller coaster of hormonal changes over the last year or what, but I am so into this show.  I laugh, I cry, and on various levels, I relate.

 

Generally, I’m not a huge fan of reality TV.  I don’t like the elimination aspects, the pitting people against one another.  On the other hand, I do like the moments of creativity and invention, i.e. the dressmaking scenes in Project Runway or the cake decorating on Food Network Challenge.

 

What I like about The Biggest Loser, however, is much the same thing I love about marathons.  Well, my second favorite thing about marathons.  (People do not routinely get engaged on The Biggest Loser, which has been my experience with marathons.)

 

 

Back to the point.  What I appreciate about this show is that more often than not, the “contestants” don’t treat it as a game.  Their experience is about dedicated hard work and encouraging one another.  It’s about putting their all into an action that will make their lives better, and not just for themselves, but also for their families (there is LOTS of talk about family).  The people who move ahead are those who work the hardest and get the best results.  In short, they are the people who refuse to back down from their goals.  They are folks of all ages, with all different backgrounds, but one goal that unites them.

 

I greatly admire this determination and focus. And I think there’s a lesson to be learned here, which might be applied to one’s spiritual life or really any significant aspect of life wanting growth.

 

When someone isn’t putting a hundred and ten percent in, often another teammate will call him or her out on it, saying something like, “If you put all the effort into working out that you put into [making excuses, talking too much, whatever the case may be], you’d be making incredible progress.”

 

For me, this is a good reminder to constantly reflect on whether I’m spending my time on the things that really matter.  Am I using my energy in a way that’s going to achieve something worthwhile?

 

Often, the answer is “not quite.”  Watching this show is helping me to be more aware of myself and my 2011 resolutions—to be more charitable and more disciplined.  It’s a great example, too, of how just about anything in this world can help us to increase in holiness. It’s not just church-going and dedicated prayer time, but every moment and everything that crosses our paths that can bring us closer to God.

 

So that’s my confession today.  That, and I fully intend to eat something deliciously chocolaty for dessert tonight.

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