It’s time to dish about the life-changing (not really) stuff I’ve learned this fall! I’m joining one of my favorite people on the internet, Emily P. Freeman, to “reflect on the past season before we move ahead into the future.” There’s a whole community of us and we’d love for you to join in! #wwlcommunity
Here we go, 5 things I’ve learned:
1 .My family will eat the same thing over and over again if they love it.
I started making this soup last summer, which is crazy because who eats soup in the summer? It became a thing due to some dietary changes one member of our family made. It’s one of the few things the entire family loves and, bonus, it’s super healthy. I’ve been making it almost weekly this fall and everyone is still loving it.
You can find the recipe here.
Pro Tips: I double it and add a splash of balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and red wine. Also? Just buy a bag of shredded cabbage because there is no sense in unnecessary chopping. About cabbage, I’m the only one in my family who likes it, but chopped up and simmered in soup, they don’t even know. Also, my mini-prep food chopper is my best friend because carrots and celery can be chopped up super fine and in less than 5 minutes. Final lazy tip: buy chopped, frozen onions. They’ve changed my life. I haven’t chopped an onion in months.
2. I love collections of short stories and essays.
I read Ann Patchett’s This is the Story of a Happy Marriage and I loved it so much. There’s something satisfying about being able to finish a whole story in one sitting. Yet each one had me looking forward to more words from the same author. (Rick Bragg’s All Over But the Shoutin’ was another one I read and loved this year.)
3. Getting stronger is empowering.
I’ve been in a state of injury for the last 3 years. I’ve been able to run a little bit but not consistently or in the way that I used to. I’ve experimented with some other types of exercise and also experimented with doing nothing at all. These are first-world problems, to be sure, but I knew I needed to take better care of my body. A bone density test finally drove the point home.
As women, we need to get take care of ourselves by strengthening the places where we’re weak.
I’m only about 6 weeks in, but I’ve been pursuing fitness in a way that’s kind and accommodating to my body. I don’t get the same kind of endorphins that I did from running but I feel like I’m laying an important foundation for long-term health and for (maybe) running more in the future.
Yesterday I noticed that I could do things I couldn’t do just a few weeks prior and I felt empowered by my own budding strength the rest of the day.
Sometimes we have to let go of what we’ve always done if it’s no longer serving us. I’m out of my comfort zone for sure. But it also feels good and right to be on a slow and gentle path toward greater strength and less pain.
4. I love helping others discover who they are and pursue personal growth.
I’ve become an unofficial Enneagram Whisperer.
The Enneagram is all the rage these days. If you’ve no idea what I’m talking about, it’s a personality framework with ancient roots. I’ve been using it as a tool in my own life for 7 or 8 years now and it’s been a total game-changer. My husband will tell you the same thing.
In the last year, I’ve shared the Enneagram with a couple of different groups and we’ve also introduced it to our own small group. It’s been delightful.
I’m not an expert, just a student, but I’ve learned that I really enjoy helping others understand who they are and how to pursue growth and compatibility with those they love.
(The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey of Self-Discovery is a great primer on the Enneagram. You can also learn more and find a comprehensive assessment at The Enneagram Institute.)
Also, if you’re already an Ennea-fan, you have to check out my friend Sara’s Ennea-collection!!! Mugs + prints + tees + totes for your kindred Enneagram lovers. : )
5. Being a shopgirl is so much fun!
I started with The Real Pretty Shop sales several years ago. I think I’ve done 5 shop sales and they’ve been such fun.
In October, I offered something new — a way for each of us to “wear courage” in our everyday lives.
I sold out in a little over 24 hours.
I started this blog 9 years ago because I love sharing ideas, resources, stories, and beauty with readers. Though I’ve mostly shared my own words across the years, I love having a space where I can continue to share other offerings that inspire and encourage you right where you are.
Next week I have a new word and style that you can wear for yourself or give to others. I think it’s the perfect word for this season and beyond. Stay tuned. : )
As you reflect on the past season, what are some things you’ve learned? You can share in the comments section.
posts from this fall:
I’m all about helping you recapture the possibility of your right-now life. Each post provides courage, companionship, and resources for life lived real.
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