Whether it was a text message, letter in the mail, or a phone call, I’ve left my recent conversations with a full heart, feeling thankful for meaningful exchanges with the ones I love. I have to assume the nature of my conversations has changed because they happen less often and of course because of the distance.
I’m also finding that the conversations I’ve had in the last six weeks with new people I’ve encountered have been extremely significant. Both impactful and meaningful, in an attempt to get to know a stranger on a deeper level.
Through the variety of conversations I’ve had in the last six weeks, I’ve found a trend in the words that I use to describe and share my life with others. I’ve overused the words community, patience, thankful, timing, and transition in the last six weeks. These five words all have their own meaning and have been, at least for me, a powerful way to share with others. I challenge you to consider how these words can have a powerful meaning in your life as you read how they’ve impacted mine.
Think about your daily life. I imagine throughout a typical week, you find yourself in a ‘community’ multiple times. Whether it a hometown, church, or sports team, a community is a group of people working towards the same goal that allows us to feel like we belong.
“You don’t know how good you have it, until you don’t.” I never truly valued the sense of community, until I felt like I didn’t have it.
What I’ve realized, is how important being part of a community is to our well-being. A community allows the opportunity to feel like we belong and allows us to contribute to a group. Walking into a space where everyone knows you and has commonalities is an amazing feeling, right? I’m learning that building a community takes time, but when you place yourself in the right situations communities form. We need communities to learn, grow as individuals, and be encouraged.
Be a part of one or build your own. Find like minded people that love, support, and encourage each other and invest your time in building something great.
I’ll be the first to admit that patience is one of my biggest weaknesses. I hate waiting. Whether it’s for five minutes at the subway platform or for a major life change, when I decide I want something, I want it immediately. But man, if I’ve learned anything recently it is that there is peace in patience.
If you’re like me and have tried forcing events in your life only to be let down, patience is what you need. Patience isn’t an easy practice. Trust me, it’s hard to have patience when you think you know what is best. But I promise you will enjoy whatever it is in your life that requires patience when you practice it. When it’s time to make a decision, take a deep breath and ask yourself: Am I ready for this? Can I handle this now? Could time allow more clarity?
And if you’re just tapping your foot in line for coffee or slamming on the horn in traffic…the only advice I have for you is to CHILL and practice patience. Patience is your friend.
A fitting word as we head into a season where our thankfulness is intentionally recognized. The more and more I feel compelled to say this word, the more I understand the importance of saying it often.
On a daily basis, there are so many things in life that we should acknowledge being thankful for, that go unnoticed. Even in the worst of times when it may feel like there’s not much to be thankful for– aren’t you thankful for your safety? Your health? The meals you’ll eat throughout the day? It doesn’t need to be huge instances that lead to us express our thankfulness. Even the smallest things deserve praise.
I am thankful for friendships (new and old.) Not a day goes by that I don’t thank god and the universe for the unbelievable people in my life. I need those friendships, and I am so fortunate to have them. I also find myself feeling thankful daily for opportunity, new experiences, and most of all Google Maps. 😉
Although timing and patience go hand-in-hand. Timing is such a powerful thing, it deserves a category of its own. Trusting timing, God, the universe, whoever/whatever, to align your stars is liberating.
All I can really say about timing is that sometimes it is out of our control and that’s okay. I choose to give the timing of the events in my life to a higher power. I’m not capable of knowing the best time to pursue this or that, and I trust that someone else has my life’s timing figured out for me. I live my life to it’s fullest, in expectation that the events that I am slowly working towards will fall into place in due timing.
Having trust in timing takes faith, and you guessed it, patience. Practice patience and faith knowing that there is a plan for your life, and if you’re living it to the fullest it will fall into place in the perfect timing.
Breakups, new jobs, and cross-country moves all require a transition from the way life once was to a new daily routine. Some might experience one of those in a period of time, but in typical Lauren style, I experienced all of those things at the very same time (lucky me, right?) and had a heck of a transition to endure. We get comfortable in the routine of our daily lives, so much that sometimes transition can be extremely uncomfortable and even painful.
But on the other hand, transition is great in that it provides an amazing opportunity to make powerful changes in life. Transition forced me out of my comfort zone too many times to count, and for that I feel thankful! So many times, I could have felt discouraged about the transitions in my life, but why be discouraged when there is something greater waiting on the other side. When you accept that way of thinking, transitions don’t seem so scary. In fact, transitions become an amazing adventure and opportunity for something better to present itself.
Approach life’s transitions with an open mind, courage, and thankfulness for all things new. Most importantly, good luck!
As always, you and me, we got this! These photos were taken by my wonderful roommate, Kendra. And yes, I am thankful for her and her camera skills. 🙂