Loving Who You Are, Where You Are

I’m so happy to be a part of Grace Notes Blog Hop!  Today I’m going to talk about loving who you are, where you are and I think this topic goes nicely with the awesome give-a-way that you will have an opportunity to win if you leave a comment below telling me how you embrace who you are, exactly where you are. I will choose a winner out of a hat and one lucky person will win a copy of   Field Guide to Everyday Magic.  It’s a beautiful book published by the makers of Bella Grace. It's perfectly sized so that you can carry it with you everywhere you go, fits nicely in your bag and can be pulled out any time you want to feel inspired. I can hardly wait!  I’m so excited for someone to win this beautiful book. I will also include a little something special to go along with the package.  

Please comment by September 7th for a chance to win a free copy of Field Guide to Everyday Magic.  Contest is open to U.S. residents.  International participants are eligible to receive a free digital edition of Bella Grace.  

I choose this topic because I know it’s relatable.  I know it’s something I have struggled with and I know not a single one of us has a life like the other.  Nobody knows what it’s like to be me, to live in my skin in my exact circumstances, just as I will never know how it is for you to live your life exactly where you are, in your skin and with your exact circumstances.  I’m not to discount any of your worries, anxieties or to think my worries are worse or your worries are worse.  My loss is bigger or your loss is bigger.  It’s all relative.  I do think we can agree though that sometimes we might struggle loving who we are, where we are. I want to share three practices that help me. If we don’t have tools we can’t fix what is broken.  

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What I have found to work for me are these three things;  Gratitude, giving and and my faith.  My faith keeps me grounded and gives me hope every day.  These three things help me to love exactly who I am, where I stand, even if it sitting in my mom soccer sweatshirt on the kitchen floor. For example, when I go on a walk and my direct surroundings are dirty sidewalks, lacking nature I can focus on the trash or I can find the treasures.  Finding the treasures beats focusing on the trash any day. I can pick up a tiny pinecone and a broken piece of glass and find the beauty in them.  I can appreciate how ruffly the pinecone is made by our Creator, I can also appreciate the sharp round man made glass and see the beauty in each of them.  I can dwell on the traffic noise or I can focus on the suburban birds who balance on the high wires singing their morning praises.  It’s all a choice. I can choose to give out a smile or I can choose to look the other way.  I have experienced both and a returned smile not only makes me smile bigger it reaches into my heart and gives me a feeling of connection and instant joy.  

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This isn’t easy.  It doesn’t come natural.  I believe with practice it starts to feel more natural but it takes practice.  It really does.  I have felt bitterness, I have focused on negative things.  I know this makes me feel heavy.  I know this makes my heart sad.  Knowing and doing, that’s the hard part.  I try and practice lots but this isn’t to say life’s surprises don’t throw me into a tailspin at times but these three practices pull me back, gratitude, giving and my faith.  

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I can’t stop thinking about the mom who lost her baby,  the woman who battles each day fighting cancer.  The teenaged girl who hates her body or the friend who recently lost her mother.   How do they find their peace, their joy and how do they love who they are where they are?  It’s a choice for them too as difficult a hand they were dealt.  Life will continue to throw us these crazy curve balls, it will never stop.  I believe it’s to teach us empathy, to make us stronger so we can then help others.  There is always a purpose and since we only get one chance, shouldn’t it be our choice to find the beauty in the mess? I promise, there is always beauty around us and there is always an opportunity to give.  

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