Smile and the whole world smiles back at you!

School is officially back in session, and it’s very clear from the hustle and bustle around the house and the way my day planner has gone from blank pages to scrawled out black masses of illegible writing. The lack of blogging the last couple weeks has also been proof of this. And to think I had been so on top of my number one goal, more consistent posts! I’ve decided that in order to try and stay on top of that goal I will make my entries more concise and to the point in hopes that this will keep my entries brief yet intriguing, and also make for a quick read which I’m learning in my journalism classes that this is what readers want today anyways. Looks like it’s a win-win for everybody, except for the fact that I am a rambler. This could be a challenging goal but with a little revision could also help with that matter as well then.

Today’s entry is going to be short and sweet since in reality, I really should be doing research on my Advanced Media Studies class and reading up on current events for my Newswriting class later today. And even then I should be preparing for the busy week that I have coming up. I suppose that I have the events that took place this morning to thank for my shockingly and lately very rare, relaxed attitude. Since school started, I have been trying to go to hot yoga almost every day so I have at least an hour and a half of peace and quiet time to myself where I am literally forced to think about absolutely nothing, and love it. But this wasn’t what brought upon a revelation for me this morning.

Those who have known me for even a brief period of time know that I’m typically a patient person (unless I’m rushing from one place to the next and the person in front of me doesn’t realize that you can turn right on red. With the increase in my awareness of horrendous drivers, I’ve been wondering if they just give license out to anybody now. No written test, no driving, just a “oh, you would like to be a hazard to other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians? Well that doesn’t sound too terrible! Here, let’s just skip steps 1,2, and 3, take your picture for your license, and we’ll send you out the door. But here’s a little brochure on safe driving, you know, if you want to read it while driving and add it to the millions of other distractions you have on the road.”) That’s the rant I would continue with if it weren’t for the kind actions that took place this morning when I was headed to the gym to do my readings on the stair climber for my Advanced Interpersonal Relationships class. (I’ll explain my reasoning for this, what same may say “bizarre”, action is in my next post).

I’m not going to rant about the crazy drivers, or the girl next to me in yoga this morning who couldn’t seem to stay with the instructor’s words and had to be 5 steps ahead of everyone the whole time, the lady who cut me off while grocery shopping, or even the young man who turned right in front of me and then stopped causing me to nearly run my bike into the side of his shiny new red truck. Nope, you are all free of being in my rants and I hope you each fulfilled whatever purpose you were hoping to achieve through these acts and go on having a lovely rest of your week. Because lately I will admit it, I have gone from a patient, optimistic person who believes that everyone is truly good at heart and their intentions are positive despite how negative their actions may be. To a ranting, impatient believer that everyone is out for themselves and their actions are selfish and designed to get in the way of the flow of everyone elses day. And I must say, I am not proud that the day has come where I rant more than I go on blissfully enjoying life.

Thankfully, I was brought back to the calm, composed, and collected person I really am when I walked into the gym this morning and the front desk employee took the time to genuinely ask me how my morning was going and if I had any fun plans for the day. Initially I thought to myself “It’s 7:30 am on a Wednesday, I’m walking into the gym with my books and highlighters looking to study the next hour away while dripping sweat on a stair climber next to a grumbling old man who keeps glancing over my shoulder to see what’s going on. Then, I get to consume my thoughts in more hours of studying and listening to lectures while it’s beautiful outside. How do you think my day is going?” But when I realized how genuine he was with his big smile (Judging by his fresh, naive grin and “My mom still tells me how she wants my hair to be cut” trimmed hairstyle, I’m thinking he has to be a freshman. He’s way too bright eyed this early in the morning to not be.) I couldn’t help but change my perspective. So I smiled back, joked about how this was one of my few free hours of the day and I was using it to study. But then put a positive twist on it and talked about how we were halfway through the week and that was all the reason I needed at this point to be happy we’ve made it this far. He laughed and told me to have a great work out which I did, and was put in my place yet again. But this time it was from that older gentleman I talked about earlier. The one that grumbles and makes excessively loud noises during the hour that we share on the stair climber together in the mornings. Because this time I actually took the time to talk to him when he glanced over my way the 10th or 11th time to see what I was reading or how many calories I was burning. Oh wait, that’s the other annoying girl who has to constantly make our cardio time a non-stop competition. I’ll try to change my perspective on her another day. I’m sure she has equally good intentions. He told me how impressive it was that I could read and climb stairs at the same time and how he was just happy he could climb without stumbling. I laughed and told him that honestly reading was one of the few ways I could get through an hour of this, and I had definitely caught myself stumbling a few times. He laughed one of those laughs that you can’t help but laugh with yourself. I felt incredibly guilty for once being annoyed by him, I should be hoping that when I’m his age I have the ability and determination to be up every morning working as hard as he is. From now on I’ll greet him with a smile the next time he peaks over my shoulder.

After the placement of these events, I had to give myself a little talking to and remind myself that the only way I was going to survive my last semester of college was if I gave myself a little mantra. Breathe, relax, remember, be thankful, be excited.

Breathe- Nothing is worth getting worked up over. We will all get to be where we need to be if we’re just patient and work with everyone. I will not get worked up over the chaotic drivers, cyclists who nearly take me out on my bike everyday on campus, and pedestrians who can’t seem to take their eyes off their phone for 2 seconds to watch where they are going.

Relax- I have found the time to give myself an hour and a half of relaxation every day, I’ve put that much commitment and drive into making this time so make the most of it and let it carry out through the day.

Remember- Everyone has been in a situation similar to yours and you’ll probably be a situation similar to theirs sometime. I was once a freshman, so I need to be understanding that all the freshman on campus are still getting used to the rules of campus and how the college life works.

Be thankful- I have been given a pretty fantastic life full of amazing opportunities, even more incredible friends and family, and I should feel blessed and thankful of the abundance of gifts life has given me. The next time I feel like ranting, I’ll think of some of the many things I’m thankful for.

Be excited- Last but not least, I will remind myself why I’m working so hard. The potential internships, traveling, job opportunities, and future experiences that I have yet to learn about; even the thought itself is enough to make me enthralled with exhilaration. Because of this, I decided to plan a little surprise date night with Luke to give us something to look forward to after our busy day! I can’t give it away but it involves
– Bikes
– DIY (pinterest may or may not be involved, though it didn’t spark my idea for this one!)
– Enjoying one of the last nice summer evenings
– Ants would ruin this
– I would prefer that it “wasn’t hot” while we were partaking in this

So here’s my goal for this week, and my thoughts of encouragement to all of you since we all have busy and hectic lives.

1. Every time someone cuts me off, makes a rude gesture, or does something to offend me I will just think to myself “You don’t know what happened to them this morning or what they are going to go home to tonight or why they chose to do that. And by me reacting negatively to their actions, it could make theirs and my day worse. And I do not want to be responsible for that. ” And I will do my best to just brush it off!

2. Be patient and not rush from point a to point b. Take time to enjoy what surrounds me.

3. Smile more (I love to smile so this shouldn’t be difficult, but sometimes people sure do like to test that!) and when all else fails force a friendly smile and walk away from the situation!

4. To make up for the impatience and possibly negative attitude I’ve had the past couple weeks, I will do one random act of kindess every day this next week! (I challenge YOU too as well!)

So much for short and sweet right? I will admit, I tried!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Wednesday! Oh, and here is my first random act of kindness. Take a GIANT smile from me to you and pass it forward!

Much love and hugs!

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