Just (Don’t) Do It – Be Content Doing Nothing

During the summer months, I’m so blessed to be able to spend real quality-time with my husband and toddler. To me, this is the best gift that I could ever receive! Even as a writer, words fail me when I try to describe how beautiful it is to see my two men standing in front of a mirror dancing around, singing Beatles hits at the top of their lungs.

Be Content Doing Nothing

Still, despite these blissful weeks of Family Fun, there’s an ominous shadow lingering in the back of my mind. Amid the laughter, day trips, and super silly giggles, a niggling voice keeps telling me that I should be DOING MORE.

What exactly is it that I have to do besides enjoying my husband and our little one while his sweet, purely innocent nature isn’t a distant memory? What could possibly be more important than a virtually-carefree summer day with the two guys who stole my heart? Well, in my overachieving mind, that ambiguously important other thing is simply doing anything that’s the opposite of relaxing and letting go.

Power.of.Doing.Nothing
I’m pretty sure this is from SpongeBob Squarepants, but I found the image on Google.

Let’s face it, far too many of us – quite often (but certainly not exclusively) many of us women – feel the persistent need to be doing something. All the time. Even though we are frequently running ourselves ragged with our personal and professional lives, there’s a constant companion that’s judging our actions from within. Are we doing enough? More importantly, do others perceive us as doing enough?

One of the things I’ve noticed is that when someone asks what we do for a living, it’s a thinly-veiled way of asking who we are.

Two of the most powerful words in human speech are “I AM.” There is so much power in these words, and as a Woman of Faith, I feel an even more profound connection to these all-encompassing words. As an overachieving creative, I’ve always struggled with trying to fit myself into one simple, concise sentence that defines who I am. To say, “I am an overachieving creative and business owner” is painfully accurate, but it isn’t remotely close to defining everything that I do or who I AM. And yet, I’m constantly fretting about how I can succinctly define myself to people I merely meet in passing – because networking is everything. It’s silly, and yet, I know I’m not the only one. Any person who understands how social media works knows exactly what I mean.

Anyway, I sat there, watching two beautiful, contented souls from the sidelines. As they danced, I caught my own reflection in the mirror – a wistful grin on my face as I observed them, seated at my desk with a neat stack of work that refuses to shrink. Instead of fully participating in a moment that has quickly evolved into a pleasant memory, I was merely in the background. Why?

My long To Do list oddly seems to get longer each time I complete one task. I didn’t walk away from my traditional career to forfeit living a well-lived life on my own terms as much as I sensibly can. There’s not enough time in a day to take care of everything, and I need to accept that. When I chose to become a mother, that day I made a commitment to putting my little one and my family first. But there are days when the struggle to balance career, writing, and family life is tremendous. It’s hard to do it all, and do it well.

Stop chasing after doing and find contentment in simply being.

Next time, when I’m at a social mixer rubbing elbows with folks that judge and are being judged, when someone asks me what I do, I want to take a breath, smile, and simply say,

“Enough.”

When you feel yourself chasing your dreams a bit too hard and you find yourself out of breath, stop yourself, look around, and remind your inner critic with a booming voice of self-assurance: “I AM ENOUGH.” (And then whip out your favorite album and sing in front of the mirror at the top of your lungs.)

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Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, goes live on August 8th. Preorder now.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

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Motivated Monday: Your Courage Defines You

What is Success Without Courage?

Christmas in July!
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Use these two links to help you chill out and get in the Holiday mood. You can get up to 42 holiday-themed books, including His Epiphany (Holiday Heartbeats #1) absolutely for FREE. Just select the books of your choice for more details!

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal_ It is the courage to continue that counts.” Winston Churchill.png

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.”
– Winston Churchill

Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, goes live on August 8th. Preorder now.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Thursday Love: Cherish Every Moment

Never Underestimate the Power of A Moment

Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment, until it becomes a memory. - Dr. Seuss

“Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment,
until it becomes a memory.”

– Dr. Seuss

Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available for preorder.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday: Grab your Dream & Don’t Let Go

Hold on to your Dreams

When you have a dream, you've got to grab it and never let go. - Carol Burnett

“When you have a dream, you’ve got to grab it and never let go.” – Carol Burnett

Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available for preorder.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Happy Independence Day!

Enjoy the Fourth of July with laughter on your lips and a smile in your heart.

The most wasted of days is one without laughter _ee cummings.png

“The most wasted of days is the one without laughter.” – e.e. cummings

Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available for preorder.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday: Make Room for Something Better

make_room_for_something_better.png

“Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes
a wonderful stroke of luck.” Dalai Lama

 

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

5 Ways to Make the Most Out of Less

Do More By Doing Less

I’m finding myself in need of some inspiration for the summer.

Don’t get me wrong – even though the next fews weeks are going to be a lot less huffing and puffing in the work-work-chug-along, I’ve still got a To-Do list that’s a mile long. But don’t we all – and in this day and age, don’t we always?

My goal this summer is actually to do LESS.

This ought to sound like an amazing list, but to be honest, it’s one of the toughest ones I’ve created in a long time. So far, I only have 5 things on it:

Worry less.

Dude, just don’t watch the news. Just. Don’t.

Sit less.

It’s so tempting to find that cozy little nook and let one of the most gorgeous times of year pass you by, but your body needs you to show it a little more TLC. Besides, you’ll get more Vitamin D in the process, so it’s a win-win.

Eat less.

Okay, so summer is a wonderful time to eat whatever you want and eat as much of it as you can. (As an unashamed Foodie, I also call this the Foodie International Anthem.) Actually, this point alone could be misleading; Personally, I have a tendency to under-eat. Here, I simply mean “eat less” of what you know you shouldn’t.

Buy less.

Hey, if I could, I know I would buy more, but to be honest, it’s still a little hard for me to be specific about exactly what I’d buy with a huge sum of money. Probably, true Millennial style, I’d still lean towards experiences, but I’m starting to get to the point where I want to develop some roots. To do that, it takes this thing called “substantial savings”. I know, I know – in today’s economy, especially in suburban California, that’s like saying “Find a unicorn, make it your pet, and then teach it how to speak five languages fluently.” Still, we hope. (Unicorns exist somewhere, right?)

Try less.

This last one is a doozy for me. I am probably the hardest tryer I’ve ever met. Sure, often I succeed. Yet, most of the time, I’m far too busy trying to learn something new, and at the same time, I’m trying to find the perfect way to reinvent the wheel when all I really need is a paddle. In the end, I’m more exhausted than anything. My ultimate goal is to simply be a doer – skip the middleman of trying and just get right to the doing already.

Who knows how successful I’ll be with this summer list. Ultimately, each day that I follow through, crossing one thing off of my list, I’ll already be doing a fantastic job of being a success.

5-ways-to-make-the-most-out-of-less

What does your summer look like? Do you still have new goals for this year, or are you still on course for accomplishing the ones you (may or may not have) established six months ago? Feel free to share in the comments below.

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats #3, is now available for preorder. Remember to join my mailing list for a chance to win a free copy of Meant To Be Broken, A Carolina Clay novelby Brandy Woods Snow! The winner will be announced on July 2nd.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday: What the Optimists and Pessimists See

the pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. the optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.

“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity.
The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available for preorder. Remember to join my mailing list for a chance to win a free copy of Meant To Be Broken, A Carolina Clay novel by Brandy Woods Snow! The winner will be announced on July 2nd.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday: A Goal Without A Plan is Just A Wish

A Goal without a Plan is Just a Wish

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” – Unknown

Luck of the IrishHoliday Heartbeats #3, is now available for preorder.

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday: Determine Your Destiny

Join my mailing list to be the first to know about my new releases, books slated for release in 2019, giveaways, and more. Follow me on Amazon and Goodreads. Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats #3, is now available for preorder.

determine_your_destiny

“The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.