So I've been feeling a little bit down in the dumps recently. Not over anything major but just because I'm feeling a bit stuck in my life and how it is at the minute. I'm sure you've felt that way too; when it just seems like someone has pressed the pause button and nothing seems to be moving forward as it once was. It's so easy for me, in these periods, to withdraw from everyone, hide in my bed and just watch the days go by with little to no change. I know from experience though, that this is the worst way that I could be dealing with my current "life pause". I had a little light bulb moment earlier and I told myself that I need to learn to be content with "the now". I need to stop living in the future and wishing my time away because honestly, life is short, I don't want to waste it. So, this post is going to be just as much for me today as it may be to you. If you're feeling the same way that I do about your life feeling like it's currently on pause, then hopefully this little list that I've concocted may help you to be content with living in "the now" whilst you're waiting for what the future may bring.
1. Find joy in the little things. I've found that really genuinely loving the little, seemingly mundane things in life can really make a difference to the happiness of your day. If you don't have anything big or significant happening, that's ok - why not treat yourself to a hot chocolate after work (don't forget a large dollop of whipped cream), buy a glittery bath bomb and have a relaxing soak in the bath, take your dog for a walk at your favourite park, buy some quirky homeware pieces from a charity shop, cook your favourite meal etc etc. If you recognise these things as little happiness triggers, then you may be able to enjoy your time spent in the present a little more. 2. Invest in the relationships that you have. An easy thing to do when you feel like life isn't quite going your way, is to withdraw from friends and family or push them away. Why not try doing the opposite? Make an effort to get out and see your friends a few times a week, go and visit Grandma for tea, take your little cousins out to see a movie, I dunno, just don't spend too much time wallowing by yourself. Spending time with people you love is a fab mood booster and creating dates and occassions to see people is the perfect way to give yourself little short-term events to look forward to. 3. Don't dwell on the future or the past. Spending too much time thinking about the future or getting hung up on the past distracts you from life that is happening right now. The future will come, it just takes time, dwelling on it isn't going to make it come any quicker. Have patience and enjoy the present. 4. Be proactive about change if that's what you want. Sometimes opportunities and situations can nicely land in our laps without us having to put in much effort but when that's not happening, seek out those opportunites yourself. If you want a different job, search for roles that you may be interested in, apply and go to interviews. If you want a change of scenery, save up some money and book a holiday. If you want to make friends, join a club or society or invite your coworkers out for some drinks etc etc. I understand that it's not always as black and white as this but there are still little things that you can do to be productive. For example, for the career that I want, I don't actually have any formal qualifications for it, so instead of just hopelessly applying for jobs currently out of my reach, I'm taking online classes and courses to add to my CV and *fingers crossed* give me more of a realistic shot. 5. Be patient and trust in God. God's timing is a wonderful yet sometimes frustrating thing. Over the years I've learnt that these "life pauses" aren't usually pauses at all - God is simply a few steps ahead of us, laying down the path for our next big step. "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens" - Ecclesiastes 3:1. We just have to trust that he has our best interests at heart and that he has something exciting coming for us, we just have to wait for it. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths" - Proverbs 3:5-6.
So, keeping all of these things in mind, hopefully they will help us to be a bit more content in our waiting. We've only got one life, there's no point in wasting it. "Have patience, God isn't finished yet"- Philippians 1:6 - S xo