“All great changes are preceded by chaos” -Deepak Chopra
If you know me, you know that my life tends to be a bit chaotic sometimes. I guess I’m what you would call a Type B personality. For me, life tends to include dishes in the sink at night, clothes thrown about the room and paintbrushes mixed in with utensils. For you Type A’s I know this picture is making you cringe right now. The thought of things being out of place is disastrous. But for me, I thrive amongst the chaos. Now, don’t get me wrong, my house is clean and I have nothing but respect for those of you who live by the rules of the tidy, but organization is more of a fleeting concept for me rather than a constant.
My boss recently shared a pretty great video with me from a Navy Seal about how making your bed each morning will create a change in your life that will help to motivate you and encourage you by completing your first task of the day. I love the concept, the message is incredibly moving and I agree with him–but I know that’s not me. That’s not how I operate. For me, those moments that I could have spent making the bed are instead spend on meditation or a morning yoga routine. Yes, you’re right, I could do both, but I know myself. I know that I will only be upset when I come home to find that my precious little dog messed up the made bed after trying to find a comfy place to sleep during the day. And I know you’re now thinking, well, just don’t let your dog in your bed. But again I say, I know myself, and I love that my dog wants to snuggle up to my smell because she misses me during the day. So, instead of finding motivation completing my first task of the day, I instead feed my soul as my first task. I do yoga or take a moment to have my coffee while listening to the birds sing, or simply sit and enjoy the sunrise. For me, starting my day doing a small thing like that, creates much more of a positive ripple effect for the rest of the day. This is my motivation for seeing the beauty in life, for treating people with kindness and being able to face any of the challenges that come my way. If that means that the laundry goes one more day without being done or that my bed never quite gets fully made, that’s ok with me.
I am, by nature, someone who yearns for the creative side. I love reading, painting, gardening, hiking, writing; it is the part of life that excites me and creates in me the feeling content. At times, I think the chaos lends itself well to creativity. In the moments of the dog barking, the music blaring, the oven going off, the phone ringing and the neighbors knocking on the door, those are the moments that I feel the most alive. Those are the moments that I feel the most creative and most authentically myself. I think these are also the moments that make me truly appreciate the silent ones as well. The moments that I can mediate and be completely alone with my thoughts are heightened because I know that the next hour will probably look and sound completely different.
I remember being in fourth grade and we had an assignment right around Mother’s Day to draw a picture of, “A Day In The Life Of My Mom.” Many of the kids drew their moms hugging them, or a vacation or something with rainbows and butterflies. I drew a picture of my mom standing at the kitchen counter talking on the phone, making lunch, reading a book and dancing around with a huge smile on her face all while my younger brother sat in a high chair screaming and my other brother and I sat sticking our tongues out at each other. When I gave the picture to my mom (much to the dismay of my teacher) she began to cry. She asked me if this is really all I pictured her as. I was confused, because in my nine year old mind, this picture perfectly portrayed her. She was superwoman. Even amongst the chaos that was happening in our house that day, she found happiness and joy, dancing and smiling.
My mom gave me an amazing example to live my life by. I may not always be organized. There may be constant chaos. But I can guarantee that there will be joy. There will be happiness. And there will constantly be creativity.