A Million Little Things

I’m a sucker for the emotional television dramas -( hello This Is Us and Downton Abbey!) Do any of you watch the show A Million Little Things? I do, and in episode 7 of season 4 there was one scene that felt like it was written just for me.


Can’t Take the Insecurities Out of the Girl

In this scene two characters are discussing how one of them recently met a woman he would like to ask on a date, but she did not know he uses a wheelchair because they met when they were both in a parking lot and sitting in their cars. The guy is nervous because he doesn’t know how to tell this woman that he is in a chair. He feels he must explain it to her so she can be prepared.

Let me tell you, I feel like I lived this scene in real life. Let me explain: At the beginning of the school year, I met another mom at the bus drop off. Of course, because of all things pandemic related, we were wearing our masks. Over the next few weeks of hanging out together every morning watching our kids get on the bus, we exchanged numbers and decided it would be fun to get together for coffee and chat elsewhere besides the cold of the bus stop.

That day, as soon as I left the bus stop, the thoughts started pinballing through my brain like well..a pinball. I thought “I met this mom while I was wearing a mask. She has no idea that I have a cleft. What is her reaction going to be? What will I say? Will I have to endure the inevitable look to my nose and mouth and then further endure the quick look away?”.


A Million Miles an Hour

My brain was going a million miles per hour thinking out all the awful situations that could occur, and I was paralyzed. I couldn’t think any further than my immediate reaction – which was..can you guess? Fear. I was feeling afraid of being rejected by this nice woman who I genuinely liked chatting with every morning. I was feeling anxious because before this woman, I haven’t met anyone new that couldn’t at least see what I looked like when they met me. Just the thought of “unveiling” myself was almost too much.

I may be 44 now, but all those insecurities that were there as a young girl born with a bilateral cleft lip and palate never really go away. They came roaring back with a vengeance. So much so that I contemplated trying to cancel our yet to be scheduled coffee hang out before it even was on the books.


A Million Little Anxieties

Fast forward to me watching this particular episode of A Million Little Things, and this scene comes on. It was just the wake up call I needed. As the main character is talking out his thoughts of should I call her and tell her that I am in a wheelchair”, the other character in the scene dropped some knowledge. He said “Sure, you can do that. While you’re at it do you want to tell her others things like your credit score?” It made me laugh out loud, not just because the actor’s delivery of that line was perfectly dead-pan, but because of how silly it would be if the guy really did that! The actor continued… “She liked you for you. And if the chair changes that, then it is her loss, not yours.”

The point that this scene so perfectly makes is that nothing other than who you are on the inside should determine whether or not someone likes you.


You Are More Than What Is On The Outside

So the next time you are feeling nervous, fearful, or anxious about meeting someone new, or going into a new situation, remember this –  nothing about your physical appearance needs to be explained away. Who you are is more than your physical appearance.  Who you are is a combination of a million little things. And if someone doesn’t take the time to get to know you just because of what they see on the outside, it is their loss, not yours.

~Vickie


What’s In A Name

Have you ever wondered, what’s with the name Dragonfly Paradigm, anyway?

I’ve explained it a handful of times via my blog and social media posts, but I thought I would elaborate a bit more since there are many of you who have only recently joined the community, and may not know what the symbolism is all about.


Run For Your Life

The dragonfly part is an homage to my father. It sounds silly and you’ll probably think it sounds ridiculous, but when I was young and would see a dragonfly flying about in the back yard, my dad would say “Watch out! They’ll sew your lips shut!”. Anyone else’s parents use this saying?!

Eventually he told me that his parents used to say that to him too, so it was really just a big joke, but it would still send me screaming and running for my life. All in good fun of course, and clearly I’m not traumatized by it (not like chickens, which I may tell you about at some point), and so it became one of the endearing things he and I shared.

Once I started looking for a name for my business, I kept thinking about the Dragonfly and started doing research into what the animal symbolizes.


The Name Represents the Vision

The dragonfly has long been a symbol of transformation, self-realization, and change. I mean, talk about a perfect representation of what I was envisioning this community to be for.


Change the Way You Look at Things

Now, onto the Paradigm part. In addition to the Dragonfly, I wanted the name of my business to represent what I was trying to do at the core. I wanted to change the way we in the cleft community think about and view ourselves. So, while I was knee deep in thesaurus searches (I LOVE a good thesaurus search), Paradigm kept coming up.

A Paradigm is a model, framework, or way of thinking. It was a perfect word to describe what I wanted to do. I wanted to help others find a new way of thinking in regard to the handling of obstacles and struggles that those of us on the cleft journey go through. It was a perfect fit.


Choose to Own Your Power

So there you have it. The back story on the name Dragonfly Paradigm. And truly, it is also a backstory on why I’m here doing this work. I am passionate about helping all of us within the cleft community realize that they are born with all the strength and power they need to live a full and emotionally supported life.

It is my hope that you continue on this shared journey with me. I know it will be amazing!

~Vickie


Pageant Dream: The Spirit of Miss Teen

Would you believe me if I told you that a young girl who was born with a bilateral cleft lip and palate entered herself into a pageant and actually won an award? Well, back in August of 1993 at the age of 15, that’s exactly what I did!

Pageant Photo Flashback..

My mother found some old photos recently and sent them my way. This one not only surprised me, but brought back so many emotions and thoughts about that time. The main thought being “how did I ever feel so confident to do this at such a young age?”

From The Outside In..

Looking back, I can pinpoint one major factor in how I became confident enough to not only enter this pageant, but to try so many other things throughout my life that I may have otherwise been too afraid to because of feeling fearful of how others may look at me, react to me, or what they may say to me.

I found activities that I enjoyed and could hone and become proficient in. Being able to develop skills and talents that had absolutely nothing to do with how I looked gave me the boost of confidence that I needed. The first and foremost being piano. I started playing piano at age 6. From that age, all the way through high school, I took lessons. I performed at recitals, talent shows, and even at the Miss Teen of Oregon pageant where this picture was taken.

They Can’t Take That Away..

Learning piano and becoming proficient left no room for anyone’s opinion on my ability. Whereas beauty is subjective and as they say “in the eye of the beholder”, my musical ability was not up for debate. I didn’t have to try to explain it away or justify that I could play. The fact was that I could.

I had something that I could do and that I was proud of. I could receive praise for my ability, which had nothing to do with my outward appearance. It was liberating.

Aristotle Was Right..

“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. Aristotle was on to something with these words.   It is so easy to look at someone as separate parts. How they look, how they sound, how they dress, etc. However, they can become so much more because of how those parts of put together. Although my talent for piano is a part of who I am, the effect it had on my ability to see my worth was life changing. I knew from the inside out that I was more than my parts, because when put all together I am a person worthy of love, respect, and have value and gifts to share just like anyone else. And so are you.

It’s Your Turn..

So now it’s your turn. Look back and reminisce on all that you are. Celebrate not only the fact that you have overcome challenges, but celebrate what you enjoy and have a talent for. You are worthy of this adoration. The gifts you have are unique to you because there is no one else like you on this Earth.

~Vickie



I’ve Come a Long Way, Baby! Reflecting on the Journey.

“In moments of quiet reflection our minds embrace the sea that we have crossed.”

~ Holmes

Big news my friends!

October is my birthday month! Yep, I’m one of those people that likes to celebrate all month long! Packing in as much fun and opportunity for shenanigans to be had as is possible! How do you like to celebrate? All month long like me, or pack all the festivities into the exact special day? One of the ways I love to celebrate is through music – and I’ve created a special birthday playlist to accompany my celebration. Click here to check it out!

Taking the opportunity..

I have always enjoyed every aspect of my birthday! When I was younger it was all about how much fun I could cram into the month. As I have gotten older, and especially as I have begun the journey that is Dragonfly Paradigm, I find myself reflecting often on where I have been, and just how far I’ve come.

Nobody said it would be easy..

Growing up as I did, with a bilateral cleft lip and palate, the struggles were real. There were many surgeries and many emotional hard times. They populate my memories as I look back on my soon to be 44 years on this beautiful Earth. Life in and of itself is hard. Living with a facial deformity makes it even more so. Those of you in the cleft community know what I’m talking about. In those times of great challenge, it felt completely overwhelming and isolating for me, and at times I thought it would never get better. Oh, how I was wrong.

One step at a time..

With the encouragement of my parents, I took one step at a time into the big world that was waiting for me. I found activities that I enjoyed such as piano and dance. Through those activities I grew more confident in myself. With each piano recital or dance performance, I faced my fears of being in front of a crowd. I proved to myself that I could indeed stand on my own two feet. The confidence gained from these early experiences helped to carry me through my young adulthood years. Although my fears of what people may say about my face remained, I didn’t let the fear get so ingrained that it stopped me from living my life and to try the things I wanted to try.

Older and Wiser..

As I look back now with much older eyes, and as a parent, I can see that it wasn’t in the big moments that I became the strong and capable person that I am today. It was through the small, less significant events that my resilience was shaped. The close bond I had with my parents. The friendships I formed when I was young, with several still lasting to this day. The courage I felt in knowing that if I stepped out of my comfort zone and failed, I had a safe place to return to and receive the support, encouragement, and acknowledgment I needed. Resilience is formed through the experience of adversity, and living with a cleft lip and palate definitely gave me the opportunities to experience quite a bit of adversity.

Paying it forward..

Now, as I embark on yet another year, and another “out of my comfort zone” journey, I am hopeful and excited. As I share my stories and experiences of living with a cleft I hope that it will resonate. I aim to instill in my own daughter the skills of self awareness and empathy that will serve her well as she continues on her own path in this big bold world.

Looking back and moving forward..

So I am going to take this month of October to not only celebrate another trip around the sun for me, but also take the time to recognize and appreciate just how much I have overcome. No one said life would be easy, and I certainly agree with that. But life is also wonderful and beautiful. It is full of rich experiences that we have to be courageous enough to try. So let’s be brave! Celebrate all that we are! All that we have overcome! And all that we can do with this one precious life we have.

~Vickie



I’m Just a Soul Whose Intentions are Good

Did you ever play the game “telephone” when you were a kid? I remember playing that game so many times in school. All the kids would line up, and the first kid would whisper to the kid next to them a simple sentence like..”My dog has brown fur”. Then that kid would have to repeat what they heard to the next kid, and so on and so on, until the very last kid would say out loud what they heard. The results were always so funny because “my dog has brown fur” would turn into something like “my mom wears gowns to work”.  I started thinking about this game because recently I had an experience where what I said to someone was received not at all as I meant it. My intention was lost in translation.

Oh Lord, Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood

Intention can be a tricky thing. Often times we say “That wasn’t my intention”, when something we have said is received by another person the wrong way.  Communication in general is hard these days. Even in the most comfortable of relationships, words can often be received in the opposite way from how they were meant. Add in the faceless anonymity of social media, the cold and inflectionless reading of words via email and text, and we are setting ourselves up for loads of “that wasn’t my intention” experiences.

That Wasn’t My Intention

Growing up I had many “that wasn’t my intention” experiences. When someone would ask in a cold, sometimes cruel way, “What happened to your face?”, I would often react with aggression. I’d say “It’s none of your business!”, or I’d say “What’s wrong with your face?!” I reacted from a place of defensiveness, and both myself and the questioner would be left with feelings of embarrassment.

If you are part of the cleft community, you know what I’m talking about. I’m sure you’ve had experiences already where a well-meaning person asks a question in an extremely insensitive manner. Much like the usual “What happened to your face?”, there are others like “Did you get into an accident?”, “Were you bit by a dog?”. The list is endless.

What is Their Intention?

Over the years I have relaxed A LOT when I get asked these questions. What I have come to realize is that most people are genuinely curious, not malicious. They want to ask in a kind and sensitive way, but they don’t know how to go about it.

No matter what question is asked of me, I can usually tell if the person asking is sincere or simply voyeuristic. If I’m unsure of their intentions, one of my tried-and-true responses has always been, “If you are genuinely interested, I’m happy to talk to you about it another time.” This way it helps me feel more in control, and that I do not owe this person an explanation about myself. 99 out of 100 times, if the person is asking for nefarious reasons, they simply walk away.

My Story is Owed to No One

There were many times growing up that I felt I had to explain myself, no matter what. That as someone being born with a cleft made it mandatory that I had to share everything. Nothing could have been further from the truth, and honestly, I wish I had learned this lesson a little sooner. No one is owed our story unless we want to share it, no matter how nicely they ask. So, if you are not comfortable sharing something about yourself, you know what? You don’t have to. You can simply say, “No.”. “No, I’m not comfortable talking about that with you.” Or “I don’t know you well enough to share that part of my story with you.” Keep it short and sweet and with no room for further explanation.

Same Goes For Me

The same goes for when I want to know more about someone, or a particular aspect of their story. As someone who never saw another person with a cleft in my small town I grew up in, I would always get excited when I would see another adult with a cleft, and it would take all my power to not run up to them and say “Hi! I have a cleft, you have a cleft, I want to know everything about you and let’s be best friends!”

You’re Just Like Me!

I’m sure you can relate. We tend to get super excited when we see others that have similarities to ourselves. But we must remember to slow our roll. Let the excitement die down and if we are interested in knowing more about this person, put the ball in their court and ask respectfully if they would be open to talking to you sometime. But remember, they, just like you, do not owe anyone their story if they don’t want to share it. Be prepared for them to say no.

The Best Intention

Communication will always be a tricky thing. Just like in the game of telephone, words and meanings get quickly muddled these days. But by seeing others with an empathetic eye, asking questions in a respectful manner and without expectation of what the outcome should be, we can engage in meaningful and heartfelt conversations around shared experiences.

~Vickie


Are you a parent of a cleft affected child? Are you looking for support in how to build their resilience skills? Then click the button below to get my free 10 Keys to Building Resilience in Your Cleft Affected Child guide right now!


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Whom Do You Love First?


Yesterday was my 12-year wedding anniversary. 12 years! My husband and I are at the point now where we have to actually stop and ask ourselves…”Just how many years has it been?” Sometimes it feels like it was just a few years ago that we exchanged vows, and other times, well, it feels like waaayyyy longer. Any other members of long-term partnerships know what I’m talking about?! All jokes aside, my husband and I are a great match, with love and respect at the core of our relationship.

Looking for love in all the wrong places..


There were many years growing up however, that I never thought I would find anyone who would love me. Being born with a bilateral cleft lip and palate certainly made the usual “standards of beauty” that society values feel way out of reach.  It was a long struggle to get to the point of thinking of myself as “pretty” or “beautiful”, but I do now.

However, it was not anyone outside of myself that got me there. Let me tell you there were times in my late teens and early 20s when I was actively seeking validation and recognition of my physical beauty from everyone else except me. Looking back, I am incredibly lucky that there were no serious ramifications from my desperate search because I was taking risks with myself that I never should have.

We can get our self-image so twisted up in other people that it can become almost impossible to unravel the tangles. It usually takes something big happening to shake us awake and recognize that our behavior is destructive and doing just the opposite of what we want it too.

Who holds the keys?


Low self esteem and low self-worth can be so dangerous because it can lead us down such a reckless path. With even just the hint of desire or validation of my beauty from someone, I was ready to hand over the keys to my confidence, all in the hopes of having just one person love me.

Shaken up but not broken down..


My jarring moment came in 2004 with the illness and eventual death of my father. That event late in 2004 shook me and made me start to take a hard look at my actions and knowing deep down that I needed to change my behavior. I decided I was no longer going to let anyone else dictate how I would feel about myself. I stopped looking at my physical appearance as the only indicator of my value as a person, and stopped letting other people’s desire to use my body be the only means of measuring my worth.

I’m not saying that this change happened over night. Having a facial birth defect made most emotional challenges harder to work through, but it did happen. I had to make a conscious effort to see all of my other attributes just as, if not more so, important than my physical ones.

Resilience List


Want to know one tool I used? I made a list in a journal of all the things that I loved to do and things I had accomplished so far in my life. When you feel low or down, try this exercise. Make a list of all the activities you enjoy and things you have accomplished in your life so far. Trust me, once you get over the initial resistance of writing something nice about yourself, it will start to flow. List anything and everything you enjoy, and what you are proud of yourself for doing. Still stuck? Ask a trusted family member or friend to help you. Let them know that you are making yourself a “resilience list” to give you a boost when you need it.

Self-love begins within..


See your value through your own eyes, and do not let the opinions and desires of others (or society for that matter) dictate how you determine your worth. You hold the power to lift yourself up when you feel down. Be your own best friend. Remember, you are a complete and wonderful beautiful human being just as you are.  

All my best.

~Vickie


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Are you a parent of a cleft affected child and are looking for some advice on how to build their emotional resilience? Then click the button below to receive my free guide – 10 Keys To Building Emotional Resilience In Your Cleft Affected Child.

Cookie Connections: Conversation and Cribbage

This photo isn’t an ad, but it should be! (I’m looking at you Pepperidge Farm!) I discovered the fantastic combination of coffee and Carmel Macchiato Milano cookies this past week while my mom was up for a visit. It is the best pairing of flavors!! Over rousing games of cribbage, we enjoyed our coffee, cookies, and conversation.


Conversation memories..

It made me remember the times from my youth when I would feel down or upset, or just wanted to talk, that she would put me in the car, and we would drive to our local Dairy Queen for a couple of soft serve ice cream cones and sit in the parking lot and just talk. We would talk about everything and anything during those times, and something about being outside of the four walls of my home made me feel a little more relaxed to share things with her, as you would a friend, versus through the power dynamic that is mothers and daughters.


Two-way talk..

The wonderful thing about those conversations was that we both shared. There were times she wanted to talk to me, and so we would get our cones, park in our usual spot, and talk to each other. She would share things she was feeling, I would listen. She would ask what I thought. It was an amazing feeling to know that my mother wanted my thoughts and advice sometimes. It made me feel that I was important to her, and that I had something of value she wanted me to share with her.


Trust bonds..

What I didn’t know then that I know now, is that through those conversations we were not only talking through whatever problem or issue we were facing, but we were building trust between us and strengthening the bonds of connection.


Connection through conversation..

If you are reading (or have read) “What Happened To You?” by Dr. Bruce Perry and Oprah Winfrey, you know that one of the main keys to building resilience is through connection. This concept has created a major shift in the way I think about resilience. I used to think that building resilience was a solitary endeavor. That it was something I had to forge myself through the fires of adversity. However, through reading the book I have learned that it is through the sharing of experience with, being present for, and being seen by, others we truly become emotionally supported and resilient individuals.


Best listen to Brene’..

Sharing our stories with those that have earned the privilege of our vulnerability is the key to connectedness. It is the way we can bring more joy, contentment, and resiliency into our lives.  You get what you give in this life. Do you want more connectedness? More joy? A fuller life experience? Then, as Brene’ Brown says, you have to get in the arena.


Take charge..

How do you show up for your life? What connections can you build up to bring more joy to you and those around you? Not sure? Pour yourself a cup of coffee, get some cookies, and have a conversation with someone. It can be as simple as that.

~Vickie


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Second Chances: Are you vulnerable enough?

I’ve been thinking a lot about second chances lately. Reflecting on the times I have been given the option of a “do over”. To try again at something that didn’t work out the first time. The times in which I’ve given someone else the opportunity to make amends.  Seeing as it is also Father’s Day, I am thinking about my own father and the second chance he was vulnerable enough to take.

Third Time’s the Charm..

I am the product of my father’s third marriage. He had a brief marriage when he was very young which ended just about as quickly as it began. He then settled down and married another woman years later. From the stories I have heard it was not the best of unions with many tumultuous times. That marriage resulted in four children, and years later, another divorce.

I mention all of this because it gives a bit of context, but also demonstrates the overall messiness of life. No matter how clear the intentions, most of the time there is a lot of mess. It can be easy for someone who had the type of experience my father did (regarding romantic relationships), to just say “to hell with it” and never allow themselves to be vulnerable enough to try again.

One More Try..

However, he chose to keep trying. As time went on, my father met my mother, and that, as they say, was that. They fell in love, got married, and then had me. He was given a second chance (or some may say a second, second chance) and gave himself permission to be vulnerable enough to open his heart to my mother. They went on to spend more than 25 years together, and even after his death in 2004, his lesson of daring to be vulnerable lives on.

Shared Experience..

I cannot speak to the relationship men have with being vulnerable, but I suppose it is not much different from my own. Developing a tough outer shell to protect myself from bullying and rejection due to my cleft made me resist being vulnerable with others. Years of conditioning made me equate being vulnerable with being hurt.

Vulnerability is Good..

As I get older, I find myself thinking more and more about my father’s experience. I am trying to follow his lead and allow myself to be vulnerable enough to take a second chance when offered and extend one to someone else when they need it. It is my hope to pass down the knowledge to my daughter that vulnerability is not a weakness, but a strength to develop.

Don’t Let Life Pass You By..

Vulnerability is hard. It certainly is not for the faint of heart, and it takes lots of practice. But take a cue from my dad. Deem yourself worth enough to give yourself a second chance. Because if you don’t, just think what you might miss out on.

~Vickie


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Investing: If Not Now, Then When?

I was having a conversation with a friend a few days ago, and as we were talking about all sorts of things, she said something that struck me. She said that women rarely invest in themselves before investing in others.  

There is truth to this..

Think about yourself right now. When an opportunity arises to take a class, go to a retreat, or participate in a workshop that you know will be a benefit to you personally and emotionally, what do you feel in your gut? Hesitation? Fear? If you let that feeling grow, what comes next? I’m guessing a myriad of excuses as to why you cannot attend. Not to mention creation of imaginary scenarios that “could” arise that end up making you say no to the current opportunity. Believe me, I have heard them all, because I have told them all to myself countless times.

Investing does not mean money..

There is plenty of research and articles out there that talk about just this specific issue and try to get down to the root of WHY women tend to put their personal growth aside for the sake of others.  So, what is the WHY? Time? Money? Nope, it is neither of those. Even though they both play a part, they are not the root cause of why women continue to put themselves down. The number one reason? LACK OF CONFIDENCE. If you are interested in reading more details, there was a well written article in The Atlantic several years back that still holds up. Click the link here to check it out.

It all comes back to this..

Confidence is key to just about everything we do in life. If that makes you cringe a bit because you feel that you are lacking in confidence, then try thinking of it this way. Your attitude determines how well you function in the midst of all of life’s challenges. Do you have a positive outlook or negative? When presented with an opportunity for personal growth and challenge, do you see it as a way of investing in yourself or do you see it as something else you don’t have the time or money for. As one of my favorite spiritual motivational speakers used to say “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Dr. Dyer is right on with that, and it really is that simple.

So, is there something you want to learn? A workshop you want to attend? Is there a skill you want to hone? Do not let the immediate fear of “I’m not worthy” stop you from doing what you want.

Confront the fear..

Are you still consumed with all the excuses? Use my Brain Dump Worksheet (link to download below) and write down all of the excuses you can come up with. Next, go line by line and right a T or F by each one. Is that excuse true or false? Is it your fear talking or a legitimate reason? Be honest with yourself and if by the time you get to the end of your list you have realized that most of your excuses are false, then my friend, there is your answer.

If you do not invest now, then when..

Invest in yourself. You are the greatest gift you have to give to others, so nurture yourself. Love yourself. Take the time to show yourself that you believe you are worthy of your own time and energy. As Robin Sharma says, “Investing in yourself is the best investment you will ever make. It will not only improve your life, it will improve the lives of all those around you.”

~Vickie


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Don’t Say That Word

I have a love/hate relationship with the word routine. On one hand I am completely Type-A and rely on lists, checklists, and schedules to maintain organization in my life. On the other hand, my free-spirited side goes absolutely insane under that much organizational constraint. My body literally feels like it’s trying to break out of a strait jacket! I’m not super into astrology, but I am a libra and my sign is represented by the scales. Makes sense, right? Always trying to balance the to-dos with the want-tos. Trying to balance the requirements of life with the need for fun and spontaneity.  It is enough to drive a person mad!

Too much of a good thing?

Organization is a must not only in our personal lives, but in society as well. Systems, procedures, and checklists help us maintain a clear path ahead. Unanticipated events allow for pure experiences that come from being a part of new, unexpected occasions. Too much rigidity robs you of the joy of spontaneity, and too much freewheeling can lead to unsettledness and anxiousness.  So how do we find balance between the two?

Spontaneous plans? Is that a even a thing?

Plan the spontaneity! I know, it sounds like an oxymoron to “plan” to be spontaneous, but sometimes that’s just the way it has to be done. We have to make room and create time for the breaks. Have you ever heard of “yes days”? Planning spontaneity is kind of like that. Why not plan for one day a month (or more if you can fit it in) to not have anything on your schedule. No appointments, no places you must be, no other to-dos or requirements. Just a day for yourself that when you wake up in the morning, there are no plans. Can you even imagine what that would feel like? If just the thought of having time to yourself makes you feel giddy, then my dear, it needs to happen!

Make the spontaneity happen..

Can’t get a whole day to yourself? Then plan a morning or afternoon. Coordinate with your partner or other family members to help you block out this time. It can be done, but you have to make it happen. Prioritize yourself and realize that you need this time in order to be your best self. If you have read (or are reading as part of the Dragonfly Paradigm Lunchtime Book Club) What Happened To You? by Bruce Perry and Oprah Winfrey, then you know that in chapter 2 they talk about regulation and balance. (You can watch the previous discussions on the chapters by clicking here).

Working to bring yourself back to a settled emotional state through regulation is just as important to your overall health as eating a balanced diet. If you don’t take the time to nurture your emotional health, nothing else is going to work either. The best way to do that? Figure out the things that bring you joy! What soothes you when you feel agitated or down? Love going for walks in nature, then do that during your planned spontaneous day! Do you dream about enjoying a cup of coffee all by yourself at your favorite coffee shop? Then do it!

Nobody Puts Baby In The Corner..

Putting your needs on the front burner is not a self-indulgent activity, no matter what society may tell you. It is necessary and required to live the full life you desire. So, when are you going to plan your spontaneous day? What can you imagine yourself doing on a morning, afternoon, entire day all to yourself? The possibilities are endless, if you just say “YES!” to yourself.

~Vickie


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