Thankful for Growth

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Last Thanksgiving in Traverse City, Michigan

It’s hard to believe that this time last year I was getting ready to move to Boston!

Last Thanksgiving I flew into Michigan to plan, pack, and purge.  As I mentioned in my second blog post, I packed extremely light before my move and was well on my way to becoming a full-blown minimalist.  People always laugh and think I am joking when I tell them I consider myself a minimalist, but I don’t know many others who have lived a full year on just one small closet of clothes and no TV, car, or computer (my laptop died a while back, so I’ve been writing on my WordPress app or at the library).  Less has certainly been more… much more.

I used to think “things” made people happy.  In today’s society, how could I not have?  As our nation seems to become greedier, I am more and more turned off by money and excess “stuff.”  After living with what I actually need and nothing more, I’ve become more responsible with my money, time, and space.  I’ve learned to truly appreciate what I do have and treat everything with care.  Minimalism has taught me to be happy with myself- not stuff.

Not only do I treat my things with care, I’ve learned to treat myself with more love and compassion, too.  It has been a fulfilling year of being my own best friend, but also a bit uncomfortable and lonely.  As we go through a spiritual awakening and become the people we are meant to be, we shed old habits, views, and relationships.  It’s been a year of ups and downs, but it’s also been a year of strength. 

I have better learned who I am, what I actually need, and what matters in life.

Before moving nearly one year ago, I spent much of my life listening to outside influences- not my heart.  My intuition always had an answer for me, but I was too nervous to follow its guidance in fear I wouldn’t fit in.  It’s true that I have always felt a little “different,” but now I consider my differences gifts, not flaws.  Today I wouldn’t want to be anyone else.

I used to spend my energy concerned about what other people thought of me- instead of using my creative talents, I hid them.  Instead of continuing projects, I stopped in fear of failure.  Conflicting views and opinions left me confused, anxious, and depressed- so when I moved last year, I decided it was time to stop.  Nobody knew me in Boston, so what did I have to lose?

I can’t control what others say, think, or do- so I might as well stay true to myself.

Although I am staying in Massachusetts this year, I will have my “family of intent” to share Thanksgiving with.  We all have the family we are born into, but we also have special people who are in alignment with our souls.  I consider this my “tribe;” the friends who have encouraged me to write, to be myself, and to follow my heart.  Once I learned to value myself, compatible people and opportunities began appearing in my life.  While much of my past has been shed this past year- old pain, fears, insecurities, and habits, I am so grateful for the new relationships that have helped strengthen and guide me along the way.

This year, I am thankful for growth.

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Thanksgiving Eve 2017, Harvard Yard