Top Five Friday

It’s been a while since I did a top five Friday around here…so with the reunion of ‘NSYNC I thought I’d reunite five faves for this Friday. I’m sharing with you today my five things to live intentionally today. This week. This month. With the hectic life we all seem to live these days (and often like to brag about too), I think we should be living with intention. Here are my favorite five ways to do just that.

1. Time with Significant Other. The first thing that usually goes in a busy lifestyle is time spent with the person you are dating, in a relationship, or married to. They are busy too, so you feel that it’s understood. Even in my own relationship I noticed I got too busy, and expected him to understand since it was “just that time of year.” But I made a choice this week to stop, make room and time for him, and just have dinner. It helped to re-energize us both, and reconnect us.

Photo courtesy of ontherunevents.com
Photo courtesy of ontherunevents.com

2. Work at work. I overheard someone utter “Well my job is my life” the other day in a staff gathering. It’s disturbed me ever since and I want to unpack that in a longer post, but for now…just work at work. Be cognizant of what you give your time. I honestly believe a majority of the stressors we carry home are the things we can leave at work, if we just work at it. Yes work can spill over into life, but when we recognize it we can put a “You can come no farther” boundary line up.

3. Grow. You have a hobby, an interest, a passion in life? We all do. Carve out at least two hours a week to do just that thing. Nothing more. Nothing less. Give it your full attention. Make growth a priority in your life. For me, I love to write. I have made an intention to read more about writing and then spend at least 30 minutes a day writing. Don’t start on, “Well you are single, it’s easy for you.” No it’s easy for you, if you intentionally make time for it, regardless of marital status or job.

4. Put the Phone DOWN! Don’t carry your phone into a meeting. Don’t check it when someone is having a conversation with you. I think in this life we have become wanters. We want to be wanted. We want to feel needed. We want the importance of status in responding to emails from our phone at a moment’s notice. I am realizing that an email can go unanswered for an hour, or three. While emergencies do arise, let’s be honest with ourselves and others that none of us are negotiating world peace or preventing a stock market crash with our email. We are the least connected people, with the most options to connect than ever before. What’s the common factor? Smart phones. So intentionally put down your phone and engage in real conversation, real life, apart from technology. You’ll be surprised at the connections you can make IRL. (that’s in real life, for those who might not get the sarcastic technology nod)

5. Read. I know it has been said by people I have spoken with that some are just not readers. I think that is false. I think we are all readers, but it is what we choose to read. The amount of time and stuff you read on Facebook? You could have finished a chapter in a book…whether it’s for-fun reading, for personal growth or professional growth. (Sadly I think I am reading for all three currently) Studies have shown that reading before falling asleep helps the brain rest and re-cycle appropriately in the down time. It also provides an opportunity to grow…imagine…think.

Those are just ways I am living intentionally these days in order to not feel the harried pace of life get control. I am the one who decides what outlets I check, my down time, and how I wish to continue to grow as an individual. Life doesn’t get to have that say for me. Would you rather look back on these years with tiring regret or joyful nostalgia? I choose the latter.

What is one way you can be intentional about your life today? This weekend? This next week? Into September?

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