I’m thankful that I’m taking steps toward simplicity. The outward changes are great, but the most significant are the inward ones.

What have I noticed over the last year (since I quit my job at the gym) and what does acceptance have to do with simplicity?

1. I’ve turned a corner. For the most part, I can no longer justify spending money I don’t have. Some of you have always been that way. That’s great. However, this is something new for me. I have accepted the limits of our budget and am excited to be learning to live within them.

2. Shall I blame menopause, lack of exercise, poor eating habits, or a combination thereof for my weight gain? Blame? No. Accept. Yes and no. Being a personal trainer, I know there are many advantages beyond managing my weight to be gained by exercising regularly and eating properly. While I accept things as they are, I intend to work toward being the healthiest I can be, whatever the scale says.

3. And speaking of the scale. I’ve been living in workout pants and scrubs. Okay, so that’s not so bad around the house, but I live in Canada. It’s getting colder, and I want something to keep my legs from freezing in the winter. Yes, I have jeans in my closet. However, all except for one pair are too small. I was incredibly happy to get four pairs yesterday that actually fit. I had to accept the fact that they were larger than I’ve ever worn. (Since that’s the case, it was especially nice that the lady behind me at the checkout commented how easy it was for small people like myself to find clothes that fit. I really don’t think she was much – if any – bigger than myself, but it was nice to hear.)

4. And the location of my shopping trip? Remember what I said about living within our budget. It was incredible. I got those four pairs of jeans at a local secondhand store for less than the price of one pair at a discount department store, and there’s not a thing wrong with any of them. I haven’t simply resigned myself to the fact that I have to/should shop in secondhand stores. I’m actually thrilled that it doesn’t make me feel resentful or depressed.

5. Another thing that brings a smile to my face is serving up a nice meal that I’ve prepared from scratch. Again, this hasn’t always been the case. There was tremendous satisfaction sitting down last night to pork chops, stir fried veggies, and brown rice. After supper, I even threw together a pan of homemade blondies with chocolate fudge melts. Yummy! And my hubby was most appreciative. I’ve learned to accept the fact that processed food and fast food are not the best option. (Okay, so I already knew that, but I made excuses far too often.)

6. And work-wise…I’ve accepted the fact that I have to buckle down, resist the draw of all those social networks, and focus on the job before me, prioritizing my To Do list beginning with the most important and working to the least. This is not a done deal, but it’s coming.

Acceptance is not the same as resignation, and I’m thankful that I’m learning the joy of accepting things I once resisted.

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