6 Things I Learned This Past Year By Slowing Down

January 1st was my birthday and a good friend of mine I've known for a long time said, "Kylee you've changed a lot over the years--you're much more grounded."  This got me thinking about this last year in particular and how I purposely slowed things down in my life.  Those who know me know that I'm a "Make it Happen" kind of person. I love to dig into big projects and get in the thick of things.

This year, however, I had a few BIG changes (new job, new place to live) and I decided to just slow down and try to create something steady & grounded. Here are 6 things, in no particular order, I learned during this process:

1.  Love is spelled TIME: There's nothing that replaces time spent with the people you love.  No amount of money, work, distance, etc. Everything has its times & seasons but time is tricky and if you aren't careful all the beautiful moments can pass you by while you by.  Things will be forgotten but memories will be cherished.

2. Lean In: Starting a new job in a new treatment program was a little bit like drinking from a firehose. Learning to lean it was my saving grace. Head down, slow & steady, lean in, ask for help, be vulnerable, listen, and more  taught me a lot about teamwork and becoming clinically sharp. This also bleed out into my personal life as I grieved, allowed myself to feel lonely, and shared some sacred moments of truth. If we don't lean in then we end up bitter, jealous, ungrateful, living a life of scarcity.

3. Be Grateful: Each day in November I posted something I was grateful for on Instagram and at first it was just something I decided to do but then I found myself really looking forward to each post. I would choose a particular thing/person to be grateful for and found myself thinking about that all day.  After 30 days of intentional gratitude I was very humbled by how much I have and how much I am loved.

4. Family: I am blessed to have a family that feels like such a sweet belonging place. While I didn't really want to move back to UT I knew I wanted to be closer to family and that was the BEST decision!! I absolutely love family Sunday dinners, crossword puzzles with dad, chats with mom, and Poldark! I treasure the time I get to spend with my nieces & nephew, and extended family.

5. Love Loud: I have never been shy with my love or words of affirmation but this year I was even more intentional. I was vulnerable, I took risks in sharing my romantic interest (with lots of rejection), I called, text, marco-ed my friends to tell them how I felt about them, and more.  Life is too short to leave love unsaid. 

6. Be Steady: There are just some things that we can't make happen fast. I finished paying of some debt, my car, and I got a raise at work. All these things happened over a long period of time. Often we just need to put our head down, dig in, and put one foot in front of the other.

This next year I have a few goals in mind but I don't plan on speeding up anytime soon there is too much to miss that is happening right in front of me.