February Theme: Little by Little | Wondershins Journal

Little by Little

So…I made a terrible mistake. Like so many January enthusiasts, I had reached my fingers to grasp more than could possibly fit in the palm of my hand. Not intentionally, of course. But then again, we never think it’s intentional, do we?

Of course I can handle this! It’s nothing. Won’t take much time.

I received this wonderful comment from my fellow Art Steward Janessa of Simply Free Indeed (one of my favorite writers!) and it is nothing short of the truth:

“What is it about Januarys that make us think we can take on the world? But instead we end up losing bits of ourselves…”

Why does January have this hold on us, rioting our emotions, making us feel energized with all the I-Can-Do-Anything’s and Nothing-Can-Stop-Me’s? So high she lifts us, that when we but stumble just a tiny bit, we fall with full force, bruises to our egos and frustrations in our hearts.

Yes, January is topped up with the most positive and unrelenting of goals, but when we do not fulfill these goals, we fall even harder than if it was December or March.

Last month, I prioritized and journaled, and would you believe that I didn’t even lift a paintbrush? I limited the things I could do and needed to do so that I could focus on the things that were of utmost importance. I even thought of an exciting theme for February – a next step after prioritizing, a next step to reaching my goals of starting my own business.

But as I was nearing the end of January, I was begged to reconsider, “Is this next step even wise?” A dreadful cold had struck me down for the second time in a month, and stress was wearing my patience down. Without meaning to, I felt myself falling short of tolerance and becoming somewhat irascible.

My “next step” was looking a lot bigger than I could possibly manage, and I knew that despite wanting to take bigger steps to make it to the finish line faster, it isn’t what my body, mind, and heart needs at the moment.

Often times, I want to leap towards the greater things, but there are so many tiny wonderful things I miss along the way that one only notices from lighthearted strolls and thoughtful pauses. It is these small walks and momentary rests that I need to refuel and build myself up once again. The finish line will be there regardless whether I run or walk.

These small steps may be indiscernible to untrained eyes, but they will make a large difference in the way I run the course. For now, it is Slow & Steady that will carry me further than Hasty & Unbalanced.

So for February, my theme will be “Little by Little,” and I’ll be making my way to a big destination by taking little steps. Since I don’t have hours to spend on the big projects I want to do, I plan on using the minutes I have to work on little ideas that can become something bigger in the future.

5 minute ink doodles in my journal.
15 minute scribbled stories on scraps of paper.
Bits of blog posts pieced together during stolen moments of calm.
Photos and trinkets collected to inspire when I feel like I can’t do anything else.

It may not seem like much, but I do believe that little by little, I shall travel far.


The art print in the photo above is carefully crafted by the talented and creative Kimberly of Lacelit. Do wander around her website and Etsy shop as they are filled with so many lovelies!


PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS:

Many times we feel like we are taking a step backwards, but what if what we’re really doing is pausing in our tracks to take a deep breath and plot our next move?

What do you do when you need to slow down and take a breather? How do you stay sane and focused when there is too much to do and too little time?

Comments

  1. “The finish line will be there regardless whether I run or walk.” This is golden. Perhaps, a beautifully-lettered art print to offer in the future? ^.^

    I love and appreciate your transparency in all you do, my friend. I resonate so dearly with your words and experiences and frustrations and lessons learned, and am inspired by the way you process through them. Thank you for sharing bits of yourself in all you do, and doing so in a way that uplifts others.

    As for answering your “Penny for Your Thoughts” prompt… I do different things at different times. Various scenarios necessitate different types of pauses. Sometimes, it’s a pause from Lacelit. Sometimes, it’s a pause from “shoulds.” Sometimes, it’s a pause from everything- a complete retreat where I redeem some vacation days and lay around in my bed (all the live-long day), binge watching shows or reading until my eyes grow tired. Sometimes, it’s a productive pause from the daily-grind of the business or my day job, where I do a working Lacelit retreat- stealing away to my favorite childhood coffee shop haunt and put in focused time on reflection, reevaluation and revised plans. I’ve found that each type of pause works for specific types of fatigue and burn-out. So, when I feel like crying in pure exasperation or depletion, I can discern which type of pause I’m aching for, and begin there. 🙂

  2. P.S. I was so wrapped up in your inspiring words, I forgot to express my thanks for the lovely shoutout in your post. Your kindness never ends, my dear. Thank you.

    • Reading messages from you (no matter how late I am in responding) always provides a wondrous pause to my fast-paced days. 🙂 Your words always come from a place of understanding, which is such a comfort when being creative can feel so vulnerable and lonely.

      I really need to take a page from your book and discover the different pauses that my body, mind, and heart need! Oftentimes, I feel like I have to fill my pauses with chores and obligations, no matter what I am doing. I have never thought to take a pause from the “Shoulds”! I’m constantly moving and needing to do something, which is why I’m trying so hard to focus on Little by Little. Even with this theme in mind, I over-did my “little steps”! Of course, this will take time – it’s quite a part of how I am wired – but I am working on it. 😉

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