"An attitude of gratitude brings opportunities."
-quote from yesterday's cup of Yogi Tea


Usually, I am a huge fan when the world seems to send just the right word at the right time. But I must admit that I snarled a bit, and maybe even rolled my eyes when I read the inspirational quip on the paper tag attached to the tea bag for the blueberry green tea I was about to enjoy.

"An attitude of gratitude brings opportunities."

"I know...I know..." I murmured.

What I'm learning during this whole 180 process is that it's not enough to be thankful for the moments when I'm flooded with more story assignments than I can juggle, when I receive a comment on the blog, when I sell a Re.Told Journal, when someone signs up for a workshop. Oh, I definitely celebrate those moments. But the true test in this journey comes in finding the silver lining in the journey's more frustrating moments.

While venting about some of these frustrations to a colleague recently, she proposed the following challenge:

"What if you told yourself it wasn't going to happen? Give up. You will never be a writer. You will never sell enough journals. You will never fill your workshops. What if you just walked away?"

What? Here, I'd called her for a telephonic pep rally, and she was telling me to give up? Was she serious?

She encouraged me to just try that thought on for size. Sit in it for awhile. Notice how it made me feel. Does it make me raging mad and hellbent to not see the dream die? Or does it offer a little bit of relief by eliminating some of the pressure I've knowingly and unknowingly placed on myself? I'm still sitting in it. And truthfully, it feels like an itchy sweater that's too snug. And ugly. A very scratchy, snug, ugly sweater.

It's Wishcasting Wednesday over at Jamie Ridler Studios. Before I launch into this week's wish, I have to give props to Jamie and her day of wishes, because right now as I dance with the chaos of my life's current state it is a constant that keeps me showing up to share my thoughts on Project 180. (I promise, you'll soon see more consistent postings here, both related to and independent of Wishcasting Wednesdays.)

Today's prompt asks, "What do you wish to focus on?"

I never thought I'd say it here on Project 180, but here it goes...

Today I wish to focus on anything BUT my creative projects. That's right. I'm taking on my colleague's challenge. This doesn't mean I won't acknowledge or work on the projects. It simply means I'm freeing myself to go with the flow, to stop and listen to the world and to myself in order to see which of my many projects naturally draw me in. During this time, which projects feel like play and leave me wanting more? During this time, which projects remain in the wings untouched because they simply don't speak to me as loudly? It's my hope that removing the laser beam focus from specific circumstances will help me gain a clearer perspective on the bigger picture.

Live Creatively!


Your One Step:

Have you ever noticed that when you hold a book really close to your face, you can no longer read the entire sentence? All you can see is a word or two, words that have no real meaning when isolated from its larger context. Sometimes when our focus becomes too narrow we can miss the bigger picture.

So this week I challenge you to let off the trigger of your laser beam focus on a particular area. Take note of how it makes you feel. How does it affect your attitude? Your energy? Your day to day habits?

Trust me, I realize this can be very scary, especially if you tend to be a bit of a planner and control freak like myself. But just try it. Even if it's just for one day or one hour of the day. This week, stop squinting in an effort to gain greater focus. Instead, open your eyes wide. You just might see something you hadn't let yourself see before.

4/27/2011 04:18:45 am

"Freeing myself to go with the flow." Sounds like a perfect plan to me. As Sara Rae wishes for herself, I wish for her as well.

4/27/2011 04:19:38 am

Thank you for sharing this, honesty & your openness.
As you wish for yourself, I wish for you as well. :]

4/27/2011 05:03:00 am

As you wish for yourself, so do I wish for you as well.

4/27/2011 06:48:37 am

Sometimes you just have to step back and breathe to gain clarity. I work with numbers by day (artist by night :) and when I can't figure something out after looking & looking, I go to lunch, go outside - just leave it. It's amazing the number of times you come back and see what you need to correct instantly!!

As you wish for yourself, so I wish for you!!

4/27/2011 10:05:44 am

Sounds lovely! As you wish for yourself, so I wish for you also.

4/27/2011 10:40:41 am

As you wish for yourself, so I wish for you also.

4/27/2011 01:13:24 pm

What a powerful and inspiring post, and I accept your challenge and will play with noticing this week. Thank you! And as you wish for yourself, so I wish for you as well.

4/28/2011 02:54:17 am

"Stop squinting and open you eyes wide." I love that! So often, we think we have to laser beam focus to get a better perspective when we need to do just what you are doing...step back with eyes wide open and see the bigger picture! Kind of like viewing our life from a hot air balloon, instead of a microscope! Love it! May you be richly blessed in your stepping away and find the clarity of vision. As you wish for yourself, so I wish for you also!

4/28/2011 02:54:51 am

Very interesting exercise. I wonder what I will come up with. :)
Loved the mental images you painted while describing the tea tag message and the sweater feelings.
As Sara Rae wishes for herself, so I wish for her also.

4/28/2011 03:57:51 am

Hello friends from the the blogosphere! :) I love hearing how so many of you were able to identify with this post. If you're taking on the "adjust your focus" challenge with me, I'd be so interested to hear what you discover. Feel free to leave a comment or email me directly about your experience!

Live creatively!



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