October is my favorite month of the year. My birthday, Halloween, and cooler weather all happen in October, not to mention I love the nostalgia that the weather changes and early evenings bring.
That being said, this last October was NOT fun.
In a nutshell, it was full of financial stress, the girls starting school, losing a vehicle, job rejections, lots and lots of tears, and a full-blown case of neglecting my own self-care.
Let’s just say dehydration is my constant state of being at this point.
November arrived, and with it came a huge heart to heart with my husband about our marriage, finances, and disappointments.
That heart to heart helped me make a 180 in my mindset, which I really couldn’t be more thankful for.
It allowed me to step off of the hamster wheel of stress, anxiety, disappointment, and let’s face it, a touch of depression and begin looking at our opportunities, blessings, and goals.
November 2 brought a much needed day of rest, a refreshing trip to Target, and some amazing family time.
And now here we are: November 3.
And I had a crazy idea.
With October spent primarily in a constant state of fight-or-flight, I’ve made the decision to challenge myself to committing to something I like to call:
And I’m here to challenge you to join me, because I think we could all use this kind of challenge at this time of the year.
We’re all stressed right now. We’re all busy. It’s time to take back our time and our sanity!
And who cares that we’re already a few (or more) days into November?
This kind of challenge is valid year-round, so regardless of when you stumble upon this post I challenge you to commit to a few days or weeks in the NO-vember mindset.
In essence, No-vember is this:
NO to financially stressful situations… YES to creative solutions
NO to needless worry over things you can’t control… YES to proactive actions over things you can control
NO to over-eating sweets… YES to healthy foods and sweets in moderation
NO to neglecting your body… YES to being more active
NO to ignoring water intake… YES to alllllllll the water
NO to late nights… YES to rest as much as possible or needed
NO to constant busyness… YES to rest and restoration
NO to obligations that do not serve the life you want to create… YES to creating the life you love
Here’s how it works:
Make a list of the things that have you stressed, busy, and anxious.
Make a list of the things you can do to help alleviate that stress.
Commit to honoring your own self-care (physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually) this month.
Create a habit tracker or grab one I’ve created from the Member’s Vault HERE.
ACTUALLY ENJOY YOUR NOVEMBER.
Here’s the catch:
This post isn’t going to be like my others.
This one will be interactive and updated throughout the month of November.
I CALL ON YOU to join me by journaling out your No-vember Journey in the comments below.
I want to be able to cheer you on because we ALL need a cheerleader every now and then.
I’m committing to being your cheerleader during November if you’ll commit to commenting and letting me know how things are going.
Better yet, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
So to launch us into this challenge, I’m sharing my (nearly) day-to-day challenges, thoughts, wins, disappointments, and goals with you.
Let’s do this.
Below are my own personal lists.
I encourage you to skim through them and create your own lists.
We are all in dramatically different situations in life, so I’m positive that my list looks nothing like yours.
The point isn’t to model your list after mine. The point of sharing my lists is simply to get your wheels turning.
I churned out these lists in under 5 minutes, so please don’t get hung up on making them perfect, long, or anything like that.
Things that have me stressed/busy/anxious:
Only having one vehicle and 4 crazy schedules to keep up with
Keeping the house under control
Too much Halloween candy/soda/junk food
Lack of working out
Things I can do to alleviate the stress:
Recommit to my blog and to you
Schedule in time for my other side hustle (or two or three)
Simplify our schedules as much as possible by creating weekly plans with my husband and eliminating activities that do not serve the life we want to create
Commit to my daily reset and deep clean on my days “off”
Buy and prepare healthier foods more often – commit to this by meal planning
Schedule days for the gym
Make my marriage a priority – love and serve with a happy heart at every opportunity
Make my relationship with God a priority – pray, meditate, trust, read, and grow daily
Commitments to my own self-care:
Reconnect with God through daily Bible reading and prayer
Enjoy books and audiobooks
Enjoy healthy food
Put my phone down
Take care of my business instead of procrastinating
What does this all look like in action?
I’ll keep my log below.
Like I said before, I want to cheer you on in your pursuit of un-busyness and self-care.
Keep me updated on your journey via the comment section or email.
I want to hear from you!
For realsies, yo.
Best to you, friend! Can’t wait to hear from you!
After a day of rest and restoration yesterday, today I woke with a clear mind ready to tackle obstacles that I’ve been avoiding for well over a month.
This morning I said NO to distraction… and YES to time spent in quiet reflection.
The result? This idea for No-vember, an afternoon spent in quiet excitement as my thoughts spew from my mind and onto the screen.
My good friends hope, inspiration, and ambition are here and ready to party today. It’s been a long time since I’ve gotten to spend time with these wonderful old friends.
It’s time to take November back, friends.
Here’s to No more useless anxiety and YES to rest, hope, dreaming, hygglig moments, family, quiet reflection, prayer, and grace.
In the spirit of full transparency, here’s a look at the last few days.
NO-vember started off with some good and much needed rest for me.
I was all, “I’ve got this! I can totally do the ‘at peace’ thing this month, EASY. Rest and relaxation, HERE I COME.”
In truth, I’m still battling many of the same anxieties I had last month (big surprise, right?).
Yesterday was a down day, full of worries about money and jobs and the effectiveness of prayer.
Dinner was spent discussing prayer with my husband, because sometimes it seems that when we pray FOR something we sometimes receive the opposite.
Pray for patience? Buckle up for some trying times ahead.
Praying to be closer to God? Hard times coming up.
It seems that sometimes prayer invites calamity.
I’m not here to preach to you today.
I’m trying to give you a peek into my mind and my life so that you know you aren’t the only one struggling.
Sometimes I feel alone in my worries and anxieties, and I’m sure you do, too.
That’s the point of documenting this NO-vember journey together.
Anyway, back to prayer.
Prayer is worth it.
It’s worth spending the time to speak with God and let Him know how you’re doing and what you need.
It helps you work through your problems and helps you to find a mindset that makes you more aware of your circumstances, which could lead to actually seeing opportunities that would otherwise go unnoticed.
Sometimes I get very frustrated in my prayer life, as I’m sure you do, too.
Or maybe not.
Either way, in the famous words of the Rolling Stones, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you might find you get what you need.”
We may not receive immediate patience, or closeness, or opportunity, but we’re often given circumstances that lead to those results.
It’s up to us to take responsibility for the situation we’re in and do the work to change whatever needs changing.
So… I had a down day yesterday.
Instead of working out, I chose rest.
Instead of peace, I found myself in stress.
But instead of dwelling on my failures of yesterday, today I choose to be present.
To enjoy my girls as they play together.
To listen to my husband talk about his work and newest hobby.
I choose to be grateful for the friend who sent me desperately needed kind words at just the right time yesterday (you know who you are).
I choose to sit here and open up my life and my thoughts to you a little bit knowing that people I know actually read this stuff (which is a terrifying thought), because I hope that one person out there will read these words and identify with this whole NO-vember thing.
We all have our own junk happening.
Sometimes we have to pull back and take care of ourselves for a bit, set boundaries, and focus on bringing ourselves back to a good place.
You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others.
That’s what NO-vember is all about.
Refueling yourself so that you’re not running on fumes before the holidays even begin.
This is a season of restoration, joy, peace, and family.
MAKE it a season of those things and let go of the stress.
None of us will be perfect. That’s okay.
The point is to pray about it.
Keep it in the forefront of your mind.
See the opportunities laid before you.
And be brave enough to take them.
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Tell me about your NO-vember! What are you saying no to? What are you choosing to say yes to?