Permission

What does your morning routine look like? And trust me, it’s okay if your answer is, “I don’t have one.”

It took a long time for me to create one, and I still let it ebb and flow. But one piece I’ve kept consistent is my gratitude journal.

It’s called “The Five Minute Journal” and I’ve been using it consistently for about a year or so. It’s quick and to the point, hence the name.

This morning I was writing three things I was grateful for in my journal.

1. Sadie (our dog) making me laugh while she galloped in the snow

2. My healthy body and mind

3. Slow mornings and the permission I give myself to have flexibility

Number three is the kicker. I’m always grateful for slow mornings – that’s the biggest piece of my routine I’ve worked to create – the pace. But I often forget to appreciate how I gave myself permission to allow this.

I gave myself permission to create my days this way, and therefore gave myself permission to create my life this way.

No one walked up to me and said, “Hey Katie, you can go ahead and change up your routine and provide yourself some more peace and less chaos.”

I did that. I told myself, “you can do this, go ahead.”

I gave myself permission to slow down.

I gave myself permission to change my routine.

I gave myself permission to do what I wanted simply because I wanted to!

No shame. No judgement. Just joy.

So let me ask you, what will you give yourself permission to do next?

The slow down bug

I fell victim to it. Just like we’ve all fallen victim to it before. And I can guarantee that I hated it just as intensely as the rest of us.

Yup. I fell victim to the stomach bug. On the morning of Easter Sunday, nonetheless.

Uh. Excuse me while I shiver away the nightmares of this past week.

Oddly enough, it wasn’t just the illness that threw me for a loop, it was the anxiety that came with it. Because it threw off my plans, took me out of work for a few days, and made me wonder if I was even born with an immune system to begin with (it’s been a rough year in the sickness department for me).

While I cannot express how grateful I am for a supportive boyfriend who took care of me every day, a twin sister who hand-delivered an ice pack for my aching muscles, and my “Mama Saint” for bringing me bread to make toast, it was still a long few days.

Today, however, was the first day that I went back into work (and the first day I went outside for that matter). But even running one errand in the morning and then walking into work was enough to make me ready for a nap.

I was exhausted. Correction: I am exhausted.

My body has been in shambles for four days and it felt like I was just learning how to use my legs again.

But as I made it through the day, a pretty little lesson slapped me upside the head: slow down.

And not just today, but across the board. I really need to take a step back and slow down. We all need to every once in awhile.

I need to slow down so I can boost my energy and my immune system back up.

I need to slow down so I can re-prioritize my overall well-being and reduce my anxiety (aka, get my butt back to yoga and meditation).

I need to slow down so I can swap my cell phone for a book (damn you, iPhone).

Heck, I need to slow down so I can write more frequently! I hate when I look at my blog and realize a few months have gone by since my last post. Although i’m doing more journaling and freelance writing now (which I love!), this is an important outlet for me, too.

Honestly, I just need to slow down so I can be happier, healthier and make more time for the things that truly fulfill me.

And if it took being sick on Easter Sunday to teach me that, then so be it.

Lesson learned, stomach bug. Lesson learned.

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