A Million Steps

May I challenge you to a million steps!

Will you be moved by my provocation?

Or, simply sigh and say, “I have done that countless times!”

The fact is, most of us have. We just weren’t counting, though. And…we didn’t do it all in one walk!

An average million steps is approximately 500 miles. Some of you have done that much simply by shopping at a mall over the course of a few years. Others are on their feet all day working, and others do a daily walk or hike–and just live life in motion.

We do get our million steps in. I have a few times over as one who has been a walker and hiker for years.

But, if I were to have asked you to sign a pledge and get it done via commitment, would you be more or less likely to get in the 500 miles and accomplish the million step challenge?

Every goal needs a workable deadline. Yes, it can be readjusted with major life changes or re-worked to accommodate days where we make other choices–like double-timing it the next day.

To succeed at reaching our desired and needed goals, how about setting yourself up with a deadline. I used to think I was so undisciplined that the only way I could get something done was by having a crunch time: a deadline with an “or-else” factor.

The issue wasn’t that I was undisciplined–though that may be the case, but rather it is a means to work with my personality type. There really should never be guilt in learning to work within our style. We do well to understand how to work with ourselves, like learning how to work with a busy four year old. Understanding, techniques, and loads of grace should be lent towards ourselves as we bite off big challenges. There is no harm in going for the ascent up the mountain!

Tell me, where is your mountain, what does it look like, and when will you climb it? If you want to walk in the daylight there are only so many hours till sunset.

There is your deadline: sunset.

sunset photo

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Solidarity: A Purple Day

The word solidarity came strongly to mind last week as I was applying shades of purple eye shadows to compliment the purple top I wore that day.  I was dressing in purple for a reason. The impetus was admiration for a girl I had never met in person, rather through her mother and others, I feel like I know her. Her name: Victoria.

Though Victoria had no vision to distinguish colors she did understand colors, and particularly the color purple. To Victoria a purple day meant an unusually happy or good day. For her to state, “It’s a Purple Day!” was to express her joy-filled delights.  Last week would have been her 19th earthly Birthday, which she celebrated from Heaven.

purple sunset

So last week, on January 22, 2015, her birthday, I wore purple to celebrate Victoria’s life but also as a show, or type of solidarity. Almost a week out, I keep ruminating on the word. It isn’t the prettiest word, like words that I usually choose to let roll around in my mind just because I like them. But it is a word of importance.

When you read solidarity you may be thinking of a union, a union movement, an ethnic group, or a more radical group of sorts. But I am thinking of it a bit differently from the norm. The common definition:

Solidarity is unity (as of a group or class) that produces or is based on unities of interests, objectives, standards, and sympathies.*

Sometimes hearing the word solidarity makes me think of a closed group. One I may not fit into. One where being on the outside leaves a feeling of exclusion. But I have a different thought. I raise the word for solidarity to be universal and freely lent to others—all may join in.  All can show support for one another!

How many times might we come alongside a person (in person, online, in social media) to say, “Hey, I am here, I am with you in this. I may not get it all, but I am here, none the less!” I tend towards this kind of living the older I get. I am free from wondering if it is okay to raise the solidarity flag. I can stand with those I know well and total strangers, and I can do so without casting a judging eye that says, “No one else is welcome here.”  This is a good and generous way to live—to find or stumble upon those who just need to know someone cares, has their back, has been there before—and that they are not being judged, they are cared about, etc.

Can I start a solidarity movement of this sort? Do you want to join it with me? If you do, I think it will be a Purple Day!

* http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/solidarity, http://www.thefreedictionary.com/solidarity

(My friend, Alisha Charles, mother of Victoria, is writing a book which you will want to read and/or hear her speak about. She also has a website, still not fully built, with the domain name: ItsaPurpleDay.com. You will be hearing more from me in the future about all of this.)