Today is the first of a three-part series called Break Up and Move. But first, let me start with a disclaimer, as I so often do...
The term "break up" is not a bad thing! It does not have to mean a messy ending, a broken heart or a ruined dream. Breaking up doesn't need to be about a relationship at all - if it did, I'd have no reason to be writing about it at all (happily married and loving it!)
But we ALL have some breaking up to do in our lives. I can give you four examples that relate to all of the people in my cute little family.
Calvin, dear Calvin, loves his pop. The sound of a server asking for our beverage order in a restaurant and hearing "water, water, water, water, Coke, water, water" is etched in my mind. But he knows that the stuff is junk and does nothing good for him. He's given up pop for a year before (before we were married) and has done other short stints without it more recently. But, after successfully completing 21 days of only having salad for dinner (okay, okay, we only did 11, but we tried!) he realized that being healthy feels amazing! He decided it was time to break up with pop addiction. It doesn't mean that he'll never order another Coke in a restaurant again, or drink one with friends during band, but it's not going to have a permanent place on our grocery list any longer. You know what the hardest part of this break up was? Finding a replacement! Because we can't just cut something out and think that void won't feel empty. We need to fill the void with something better! We were able to find cans (that come in a 12-pack) of Dasani berry-flavoured sparking water that is carbonated, but have no sugar or artificial sugar. It doesn't taste sweet at all, but it fills that need for a bubbly beverage for him. I'm so happy he was able to break up with pop, and move on to something healthier.
Oliver loves the Power Rangers. He truly believes that he is the Red Ranger. Unfortunately, the downside to this is that he wants to watch the show on Netflix all the time (say goodbye to my bandwidth) and it makes him act more violent. Calvin and I have talked to him at length about how this show makes him act, and that being so addicted to tv makes you lazy and anti-social. He kind of understands. What Oliver needed in order to break up with his desire to watch Power Rangers 24/7 was an alternative. I took the time to really organize his toys into categories -- music, sports, cars, make believe, Dakota's stuff, stuffed animals, art/crafts, books, puzzles, and BUILDING BLOCKS. This was the ticket. Before when all of his toys were scattered about haphazardly it overwhelmed him and he preferred to just be in the comfort zone of the television. With this new organization I can say: Hey Ollie, I'm pulling your blocks out, do you want to build a robot? And he will for hours. In fact, when we went to the library a few days ago he asked the librarian to show him books about Lego. This kind of backfired as I now have to do all of my projects exactly to the book's specifications or else he gets ticked off, but I digress... He was able to cut off, or break up with, that habit and find something new that is so much better!
Dakota recently broke up with two things: sleeping in her parents' bed (hurray!) and relying on her soother. In this case, I think it's just a simple story of growing up. We came home after seeing a movie one night and our babysitter had Dakota sleeping in her crib, which I've never been able to achieve. We went to bed and woke up in the morning at 7:30 a.m. to her still sleeping. It just took trying! The soother was a different story. I literally forget where it was, or that she likes to use one, and three days went by. For Dakota, she didn't need a new habit, she simply broke up and moved on. Now she's an independent one-year-old and doesn't need anything to hold her down!
Lastly, my story! I have a nightly ritual of "going to bed" about an hour before I actually "fall asleep". I get in my yoga pants, take out my contacts, and then just lay there reading Reddit and browsing Tumblr or Instagram. I catch up on the day's blogs from people on my feed, I read my Facebook notifications, check my personal and work email, and by the time I'm done I've wasted so much time. If I'm going to be my best self in the morning, I need this sleep. So I've broken up with my phone habit. Now, when I hit the hay I pull out a book (thanks, library) and read a chapter and then crash. It's a lot easier to pick a place to stop in a book as the chapter ends and you can wait until tomorrow to read what happens next. I can't say I'll never check my phone in bed ever again, but I do feel like I've broken up with the nightly habit and having moved on to a reading ritual is so much better! I'm getting through those books that I've been meaning to, and I love it!
I'd love to hear your story about breaking up with something negative and moving on to something positive! To hear more inspiring stories about breaking up with the bad and embracing the good visit www.breakupandmove.ca. Thanks for being a part of this series.
This is a sponsored post.