I recently spent a week at a rented cabin on a MN lake; just me, my husband, son and lots and lots of quiet nature.  Both my husband and son are introverts so there was a lot of reading, leisurely family dinners, walks and quiet.  I’m use to a pretty intense schedule. I live with lots of noise; people, social media, etc. There isn’t much room for margin in my life; too little sleep, followed by too much coffee and lots of activity.  But at the cabin without TV, phone service or noise there was lots of time to think, reflect and ponder about life and if I’m living the story I want to tell. I realize living without margins makes me grab at the next thing without knowing if it’s truly what I want.  Most of the day I fill every spare moment on a screen with information pouring in, wolfing down food, events and experiences in mindless abandon and frankly, I want to find a way off this crazy merry go round.

As I neared the milestone of turning 50, I took stock of my life; its values and priorities. I realized I was consuming more than my fair share in most areas. After taking a year off from shopping retail, I decided to also quit consuming food my body didn’t need and was able to lose a significant amount of weight.  I feel so much lighter and healthier.  I want to live and consume mindfully, making wise choices and being thankful for the things that I have instead of cramming in more.  This creates margin and space in my life which allows me the opportunity to give to others. 

When I don’t live mindfully, how easy it is to forget how so many around the world live with few opportunities to improve their lives.  While I’m racing to the next thing, I don’t take the time to ponder my purchases and support #slowfashion and #fairtrade.  I want to treat others as I would want to be treated; with dignity and fairness. I want to give other women in developing countries the chance to tell the stories they want their lives to tell as well. Elevat enables the artisan to be the hero of her own story as she provides for her family.   

Is anyone interested in joining me in working to create balance in your life, a little margin to breathe, reflect and give yourself the chance to ponder your choices?  We only have this one life; one chance to tell your story.  I want my life story to speak of compassion and helping others.