Lauri Mackey

The “To Don’t Do” List

Doing vs. Being

Inspired by this beautiful video from the UK, #letgo, I contemplated the wisdom of a “To Don’t Do List”.

A couple of years ago I had the opportunity to race mountain bikes.  I’m over 40 and I ran in the beginner class, but I felt on top of the world (not to mention the podium) while I did it.  It was an 8-race series that ran in the summer where most racers wore a bandana over their mouths to keep out the dust while racing in 100-degree plus heat.

Nothing feels quite like racing.  It is tough, exhilarating, and I don’t ever see my heart rate that high.  And then last summer, the race series was cancelled.  I was so sad as I thought I would try the next level up to see how I could do.  Bummer!

Then three days ago I got the email.  My race series was back!  It starts next month on May 19th.  I was super excited until I started to contemplate where my life was right now.  The family business was in trouble and has barely come back to life and it’s needed my help.  Lauri’s Lemonade Stand is finally moving forward and the interviews are happening to launch my podcast (which has me flying on top of the world!).

This morning, I was thinking about it so much that I talked with my hubby as he’s the wise one in this family…grounded and more calm than my thinking.  He supported me in my endeavor to pursue this race…he’s awesome!

Then I watched the video.  I thought about “Doing vs Being”.  I thought about how good I am at making to-do lists, but have never ever created a “to-don’t-do” list.

I looked at my to-do list carefully and thoughtfully.  I then created my “to-don’t-do list” and here is what it looks like:

    • Don’t make plans during weekday evenings outside of my family if at all possible.
    • Don’t over-commit my time so much that I don’t have time for me or my family.
    • Don’t focus on things that don’t matter in the big picture of my life.
    • Don’t let negativity or negative people take up too much of my headspace.
    • Don’t worry so much.
  • Then I asked my 16-yr old daughter and here is what she said:
    • Don’t eat as much junk food, criticize others, or bite her nails.
  • Then I asked my husband and here is what he said:
    • Don’t sweat the small stuff (and it’s mostly all small stuff).
    • Don’t worry.
    • Don’t be afraid to try new things.
    • Don’t judge myself so harshly.
    • Don’t compare myself to others.
  • Then I went to family dinner and here is what a few of them said:
    • Don’t procrastinate.
    • Don’t make excuses…They are like ****holes, everyone has one and they stink!
    • And my personal favorite from my PT Assistant niece:  Don’t get poop on your lab coat while working ever again!

In the end, I decided that I would not race, but only for this year.  Our businesses are in critical condition and the timing is off.  So it may be on my “To-Don’t-Do” list right now, but I plan on it being a break and coming back next year to race my little heart out as it will end up on my “To-Do” list once more.  It felt good to give myself permission to say NO.

What can you put on your “To-Don’t-Do” List?
I would love to hear from you!

Embrace

Embracing (ALL OF) You
I’m a ball-baby, a boob, a serious cryer.  I cry when I’m happy and full of love.  I cry when I watch movies.  I cry when little things have added up over time and it brings a sweet release that only crying can achieve.  I cry when I’m sad and I cry when I’m mad.  I am a cryer.
I know I’ve written about my sweet husband a bunch, but he made me see my crying in a different way.
Several years ago (more than I want to count, actually) I was crying over something or other and throughout my whole life I had fought being a cryer.  In the midst of my frustration and more crying I told my hubby, “I’m sorry, I’m going to learn how to control this, I will figure this out and I won’t be such a boob”.  What he said changed not only my view about my crying, but in every other aspect of my life.
He said, “Sweetheart, I’ve known you for a long time and I believe this is a part of you that I don’t think is going to change.  I think that you are a cryer and that’s ok.”  WHAT???  It’s ok to I cry?
I had always seen my crying as a negative that I needed to change to a positive.  The thought had never crossed my mind that it was simply a part of who I was and that it was perfectly fine to embrace that as a part of me and MOVE ON.
Since that time I have never worried about my crying.  It has even made me view other people’s crying in a whole new light.  Here’s an example: My daughter was having a particularly hard day yesterday and she stopped by my work for a “cry session”.  She apologized for half a second and I just told her to let it all out.  She did.  She knew I was a cryer and she knew that I would understand.
Being a cryer and embracing that part of me has made me empathetic to others and has made me see other parts of my life that I viewed as negative, as just a part of who I am today.  I love that!
There are still things that I want to do, accomplish, and be.  But this one moment in my life has changed my view of who I am and has led me to accept things about myself that are just fine, thank you very much.  🙂

Tears

What can you embrace in yourself starting right now as being a part of what makes you uniquely you?  Recognize it, own it, embrace you.  Change what you want, keep what you want, but embracing you is a beautiful step towards freedom.  Love to you, my tribe of Lemonader’s!
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