Picked up an interesting book this weekend–“How to Love the Home You Have”. It has tips on turning your current home, no matter its flaws, into a house you can love. I picked it up to see if there were tips on furniture arranging and such. There are, but most of it deals with your attitude, saying you need to have an attitude of gratitude towards your home and an attitude of grace towards yourself for your expectations of yourself.
I lived most of my life with high expectations of myself. I never aspired to riches, per se, but I did hope that all my life I would continue to achieve at high levels throughout a career and family life. Now I’ve had to lower those expectations and accept success in small things, such as doing a blog post, rather than big things, like publishing a book. Not that I’ve given up on that dream. But I recognize that it’s something that’s not going to come easily. Just like I can’t remodel a house myself like my mom and dad did because I don’t have those skills, I have to settle for keeping it neat and clean as best as I can. Some of the readjustment came about with bipolar disorder, but some of it came about with just growing up and realizing my limitations. I was part of the first generation told to “be all you can be” and I took that to heart. But some choices you make and some circumstances you face can limit you, like my bipolar disorder has done for me. I do my best to transcend those limitations, but they are still there, whether I want to acknowledge them or not.
I need grace towards myself in those times when I feel like I’m just plodding along in place, not really feeling like I’m accomplishing anything. Are there areas in your life where you need to extend grace to yourself and be a little less hard on yourself? I have many. Hopefully this habit will be one I continue to learn as I go about life through a bipolar lens.