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Life is hard. Let’s just put that right out there. Fixing dinner, doing laundry, cleaning the house, working, grocery shopping, kids and all that entails….and at some point you probably should try to sleep. Burnout is a real thing and doctors tell us that stress can kill you. But all of those things I listed are not things you can just stop doing. That list contains necessary To Do’s. Sure you can call in sick to work every once in a while. And yeah, you could let your house get a little messy on some days. But you’re always going to have to go back to your routine. So what is this routine missing? A little time for you!
Let’s talk Self-Care…
I’m not talking about planning yourself a vacation and escaping reality for weeks on end and leaving your responsibilities behind. I’m talking about designating 30 minutes every day to doing something your WANT to do! So now you have to decide…what do you want to do with your 30 minutes? Hmmmm…
A couple of months ago I found myself in a really deep funk. I was stressed out from work and life and I was getting older and it was all spiraling. Normally, I would have found some stress relief by sitting down at the piano and playing some favorite pieces or belting my guts out to a musical theater tune. BUT right now, we’re without our piano and I don’t want to disrupt our neighbors with a medley of showtunes. So with my normal outlet across the country in storage, what was I going to do?
I started thinking about my other hobbies. To be honest, they’ve all been DESPERATELY neglected while I’ve been pursuing my education and working and figuring out adult life (ugh!). I had to think WAY BACK to what I used to enjoy doing when I felt like I had free time. I loved reading. I used to consume books the way I eat White Fudge Oreos at Christmas. But who has time for recreational reading these days? I mean, I’m far too busy taking BuzzFeed quizzes. I also collected materials a few years ago to try to learn Brush Lettering and Calligraphy. And then that fizzled out…because how could I possibly practice my handwriting when I need to memorize all of the Marvel Avengers movies?
What did I do? I pulled out a book to read. I gathered up all of my markers and papers and decided to start learning something new. Being the practical person that I am, I decided to come up with ways to use my new hobby. I’ve found ways to display the things I’m working on so I have incentive to actually finish projects. Here’s a look at my first one…
As I worked on my projects, I started to remember back when I was a kid. I had a small calligraphy set, stamps, embossing stuff, markers…all kinds of things. I loved doing this kind of stuff! I would make cards and stationary and practice my lettering. I think I thought that as I grew up, I grew out of the things I enjoyed. But that’s just dumb! I still love Disney! I still love reading! I still love sci-fi/fantasy things! And I still love fancy writing and crafting!
We don’t need to “re-invent” ourselves over and over as we get older. Quite the contrary! We need to stay connected to our roots and our youth! The things that made us “us” as kids, still play a big role when we’re adults! We’ve recently re-discovered our mutual love of puzzles. So we bought a Christmas puzzle! I think we’ll regularly have a puzzle going on at our house! Going along with the puzzle theme, we love legos. So we get each other legos for Christmas. It’s just one of the things we do! Legos aren’t just for kids! They’re fun for adults too!
Enjoying things that we loved as kids doesn’t make us less responsible as adults! It makes us able to continue to cope with the hardships of adulthood because it helps us hold on to that child-like innocence and hope. And we all need more of that as adults!
I want you to think really hard…What did you love doing as a kid that you can use for your Self-Care now as an adult?
If you’re interested in getting started with hand-lettering, I can make a few suggestions based on my experience as a beginner!
Tombow Fudenosuke pens are great to begin with! They are what are called “small tip” pens and are easier to learn how to maneuver.
This is my favorite lettering for beginners book! I’ve looked at a lot! And I’ve tried a lot of the free pages you can find on Pinterest. This book is so great! It has practice pages PLUS tracing papers! You’ll get so much practice with this! And it’s really affordable! This is the link for small pens. If you go the large pen route, she has one for that as well.
These are the large tips that I have. They’re nice, but affordable markers. They’re also watercolor markers so you can be extra creative with your writing.
Your brush pens are happiest on really smooth paper. So try out a Rhodia pad!