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Choosing Happiness | Hayley Gibbs Photography

Updated: Mar 27, 2020

I'm going to be honest. Maybe even a little vulnerable tonight. I'm a mom of three, I have ran my own business for a little over four years now full time. I have worked from home with my kiddos running wild behind my desk more times than I can count. But this worldwide pandemic with COVID-19 has pushed me to an uncomfortable place I've never been before.

The uneasiness, the worry, the anxiety, the struggles all tied around what will happen over the upcoming weeks and (hopefully not) months has brought me to a place that I have never been. If we're all honest, we all probably feel the same way.

Whether you're a small business owner like me or if you (or your spouse) have been sent home from work with an untold timeframe of when you can go back, it's scary for all of us.

With all of the doubt floating around us all, you are not alone in how you feel. It's ok to process everything that is going around you the best way you know how. If you need 5-10 minutes a day to hide in your closet to pray or just cry, do it. If you need a bowl of ice cream while you watch reruns on Netflix, do it. If you need to run a little in the mornings, do it. If you need to just hop in your car and drive past T.J. Maxx just to glare through their glass windows, do it.

We are all in survival mode. Not necessarily survival like the show Naked and Afraid but mental survival mode.

A while back I found some great ways to shift my mindset from survival mode to gratitude mode. As a mom, I often have to do a self-check throughout my day to make sure I'm staying on track. Staying focused on the positives right now is hard but it's definitely do-able! Don't let what's going on around you destroy your sanity or mask the happiness with the cover of chaos.

I've pulled together a few things I try to do on a daily basis to keep my mindset moving in the thankful direction and I want to share them with you!

1. Wake up early and get ready for the day

If there is one thing that makes me feel better throughout the day it is being "ready". I'm talking about getting a shower and fixing your hair for the day. It doesn't matter if you're going anywhere!! I have worked from home for the past 4 years and when I made this switch I was more productive and felt better when I did this first thing!

2. Spend 15-30 minutes each morning alone before your kids wake up

I know some days you never know when your kids will wake up and with their routines off a little this may make it harder. BUT if you can plan to spend a few minutes each morning by yourself it will be so worth it! I spend my quiet time doing these things: drinking my coffee, making a list of things I need to day for the day, and just sitting in the quiet.

3. Make your bed

I'm sure you've heard this a million times in your life but if you're not making your bed in the mornings it is a small life hack that truly makes you feel more accomplished first thing in the mornings!

4. Choose to think about the good things you've been blessed with

We are all so so blessed. When I need to center my thoughts I think about where I came from to where I am today. I think about how thankful I am for my husband, my kids, our health, our home, and most of all my walk with God.

5. Spend time listening to Christian music

My walk with God hasn't always been strong and if I'm honest it has been uphills and downhills. He has never left my side through all of my ventures and He is always there for me when I need a good cry and a listening ear. This bullet point is something I changed drastically in my daily routine about a year and half ago. I went from listening to Christian music maybe 20% during a weeks time (including church services) to probably 90% of the time now. When I'm in the kitchen cooking, cleaning or editing my christian playlist is on. No matter what is going on around me when I choose to focus on Him everything else just kind of stands still.

This list isn't anything magical and it's probably all things you've heard before but every now and then we need a refresh. I hope you will take these tips and apply them to your day but most of all I hope you know that whatever you're feeling during this time, you're not alone.
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