Don’t sweat the small stuff

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Hi there.

Thanks for popping in. Friday’s blog a private peek, so let me open my little box of handy codes for living, my little tool box for making life more palatable, and perhaps one of them may resonate with you…

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

I can only speak for myself, but I have noticed that as things are getting increasingly more intense out there, my fuse is getting increasingly shorter, my tolerance levels are down, my anger levels are up – and I am biting more quickly. So I have to keep my shirt on, hit the pause button and not sweat the small stuff.

There is so much stuff which can get under your skin if you let it, but actually most of it has absolutely no weight in the bigger picture.

Hit the Pause Button

Often easier said than done, but I find keeping my mouth shut and counting to 10 gives me just enough time to not fly off the handle or react inappropriately. I sound like a right stroppy madame here, I know, and that woman is inside me. I have just learned through many years of practice, how to keep her quiet. Mostly it works, but lately I have noticed her presence more. By just not speaking, not voicing my thoughts immediately, I can usually get enough distance. Can’t help the thoughts that come into my head, but don’t always have to voice them…

Know when to say NO

No is a complete sentence; it does not require explanation or justification. Too often I have said Yes when I actually wanted to say No. And at the moment there is so much more going at work, so much more pressure, so much more to consider, that I have to remind myself of that if we are to keep an even keel at Clarity. No point in biting off more than we can chew – no point at all.

Go to bed earlier. Get up earlier.

More sleep helps. When I sleep longer, I am less agitated, more mellow the next day. Concentration levels are improved, my general sense of well being is better. Do you find that too? I have no trouble falling asleep at all (10 seconds and she’s away with the fairies!). Avoid caffeine and chocolate in the evening, and I usually sleep right through. But these are troubling times indeed, so I’m waking up rather earlier than usual. So I lie there in the dark, worrying about stuff that I have absolutely no control over.

“Dave” I whisper, “Are you awake?”

Invariably out of the darkness comes, “Yep. I’ll go and put the kettle on”

And then the night doom spell is broken and we are wide awake.

These are difficult times for all of us. We just need to have a care for others. And keep crafting. There’s never been a better time than now for using our creativity. It really is a gift.

Love and Hugs

Barb xxx

20 thoughts on “Don’t sweat the small stuff

  1. Barbara, I feel for you. You have so much going on the pressure must get overwhelming at times but Dave sounds like a calming influence. I am sure your words will resonate with many of this wonderful crafting community you have built over the years.
    I have only had a couple of complete nights sleep in the last eight months, usually it is 2-3 hours, lay awake for ages then have another couple of hours. I get very grumpy if I get woken up before I’m ready. Hubby wakes up full of bounce and big smiles. Doesn’t help the temper at all but strong coffee and breakfast usually puts things right.
    We women are the best at multi-tasking but sometimes I wonder if we are too good and take on too much. NO is a word I have learned to say, in the nicest possible way, and mean it.
    I haven’t had my dead straight hair cut siince January so it is longer than it has ever been and IT HAS GROWN OUT WAVY AND CURLY !!! If this keeps up I will never have to have a perm again – more money to spend on crafting. Oh joy, this is a pleasing upside to the lockdown.
    With all that is going on do remember to give yourself some downtime to spend with Dave and your family, it will refresh and enable you.
    Stay safe, stay well 🍒🍒🍒

  2. I totally agree Barbara. I’m just taking one day at a time at the moment.
    I seem to wake about 3 times each night. But hey ho it is what it is. Laughed so much st your stories this morning, made my day.
    Big hugs xxx

  3. Hello barb, in normal life we have enough pressure at the moment, I cannot even begin to imagine what it is like trying to run a business in these times. Thank you for your take on it, I just wish I could be less stressed about stuff like banks and finances right now. Big hugs to everyone. Stay safe and take care. Bx

  4. I started swearing with the f word and that’s something I’ve never done until this year. I’ve now curbed it again as it was irritating me and hubby just laughed as he found it funny hearing me use it ! I’d never use it to anyone only myself. Thankfully we both sleep well. Have a lot to be grateful for and the tragic accident here in Oxford this week puts a lot into perspective I can tell you. Can’t imagine what’s it’s like to run a business and keep coming up with these beautiful things for us ! Saying that my Mum has got me a Clarity voucher got my birthday this week and my sister has said it’s arrived today ! Have a good weekend xxx

  5. Thanks, Barbara. You have exactly summed up my week. I’m not sure of the concentration to listen but I hope to catch your shows tomorrow as your voice calms me down so much. If you can do it with so much more on, I can do it.

  6. Oh Barb! I so feel for you. I completely know where your coming from. A few years back I suffered a difficult time with depression, and the worst of it was lack of sleep! It totally turns you around, which then ultimately has a knock on effect with mood and functionality. I’m a moody mare if I don’t get eight hrs sleep! And my language gets ripe when I get worked up too it’s very hard sometimes to bite your tounge ! Just know we are also here for you! You have given us so much of your time and knowledge and your voice calms a lot of us and has become our therapy! you are a brilliant captain steering the boat and always manage to pull it out of the bag! I would personally like to say you are welcome to sound off at anytime! I’m happy to listen! Now I know the advise is not too look at your phone throughout the night but if ever Dave is catching zzzz’s feel free to reach out to us. We are also here for you! X

  7. sleep? I remember that, though I have NEVER been a good sleeper, I did used to be able to sleep properly when I was younger, but now it’s too hot, it’s too cold, too noisy…etc., etc., it’s no wonder I get out of bed at all times to look at the sky – which is always the same, that’s my leveller – oh and a hungry cat!!
    Hope you are all well.
    Love
    Maggie (Bendy Yorkite)
    PS Barb, you know your Africa story where the animals stand on each other to seek water, well…Sebastian (grandson) is the big ONE on 31st October and I would like to do him a similar story, is that OK please? (I’m not sure if it’s copyright to you) – obviously I would be using the wee africa animals.

  8. Hi Barb, I couldn’t see what I was doing in the SHAC SHAC today, you made me laugh till I cried, with your stories. It is so good to laugh out loud, I only seem to do it when listening to your stories, so carry on telling them, Barb.
    The mandalas have been a treat. I inked my tracing paper as I always get an outline which gets more and more fuzzy when tracing traditionally. Then I used tracedown (carbon) paper and went over my drawing with an embossing tool, over the tracedown onto paper, which worked much better. Then next, I photocopied the line art which was inked on the tracing paper, which worked beautifully, and I coloured those, but I have yet to use the lightbox to copy directly onto paper which I think will be even better, that’s the next step.
    Loved this Barb. x

  9. I can relate to some of that just now. I am definitely more stressed, not because of Covid per se, but because, at times, I seem to be surrounded by idiots!! Lol. However, it’s all good. I actually made some of my ‘demo’ die cuts from the SEC into cards this afternoon. You don’t want to rush these things!! Lol. Once I had chopped them to straighten them up, they looked good. Thanks, Barb. Have a lovely evening and a good day tomorrow. Hxx

  10. I think we are all feeling the same at the moment. I know that I’m reaching anger point more often but like you Barbara I count to 10 and try to think before I let rip. Thank you for your company this morning lucky for me I had only had 2 cups of tea but you had me in stitches and nearly caused a puddle. My sister and I used to be the same one would set the other off and we wouldn’t be able to stop laughing had many a wet puddle I must confess. Don’t sleep very well either and find myself getting up to doodle in the wee hours then go back to sleep when my mind has calmed itself. Have yourself a lovely weekend and see you on Monday, think I might buy some ten a lady!!

  11. Hi Barb,
    I agree with what others have said too, I get very angry and frustrated at the moment when I’m watching the news. I chant understand why people can’t just follow the rules. It gets to me so much that I now only watch once a day! I don’t sleep very well at all these days – I think it’s a age thing, I either too hot or too cold. I didn’t go to bed until 5 am this morning (( looking after Scamp through the night) and have just felt like a zombie with a sore head all day! The only upside to that is that Scamp is much better and can walk about without falling over which is such a relief. You are doing an amazing job and have been a tower of strength for so many throughout these worrying times. Take care, lots of love,Alison xxx

  12. I really feel for you with the pressure you must be under keeping a business going with all thats going on at this time. It doesn’t hurt to have a rant and get things off your chest sometimes. Good job we have good husbands who help us through and calm us. I haven’t had a good nights sleep for years now but learning to live with it, hpget up at least 3 times in the night, I often go in my craft room and have a play which calms me down, or go down and make a cuppa and try to read for a bit, trouble is I can’t get into a book lately and have to re read the pages I’ve just read then I might not pick it up for weeks and have to start again. Ha ha. No hope for me, is there? Keep smiling Barb, you’ve a lovely smile and you make us all smile, so a great big thank you for that.xxx

  13. I agree with all you’ve said but especially the saying, “No”. bit. I learned sometime ago that there is no requirement to give your reasons. Afterall, people don’t expect an explanation when we say, “Yes” so why should they expect one when we say, “No”. If we want to explain then it’s up to us not the person asking. Just also want to say a big thank you for all you do.

  14. Hi Barb, not got your pressure of a business, but know it can be a sod even without a virus so take my hat off to you. These days av other stresses, health mainly and continually trying to accept what I can’t do anymore, I’m 59 (just) so in me ed don’t feel old but physically, knackered with degeneration of me joints, spine being the worse. I so get what you’re saying and you’ve hit the nail on it’s ed. I’m taking a breath now, stopping meself going on about me and me old kit bag. Instead I’m gunna say ‘what’s the difference between a snowman and a snow woman? ……….. SNOWBALLS.😃 look forward to catchin ya on tele. Peace out.xxx

  15. This resonates with me so much, Barbara. Like you, I have no problem falling to sleep – it’s the mornings I struggle with. ‘Intrusive thoughts’ I think they call them – those sleep invading nudges that fill you with a sense of dread that you can’t seem to shake off. For me, this usually happens between 5 and 6 am, but can be much earlier. I don’t fight it, that doesn’t work for me. I do have an antidote. It works for me. It’s how I first encountered Barbara! I turn on the TV in my bedroom and watch Hochanda on YouTube. Yes, really – it’s what works for me. It calms me. It pushes away those dark thoughts and takes me to a happy place. I set my sleep timer to 20 mins – i fall asleep before the timer ends. I hope that one day I don’t need to put the TV on but, for now, it works for me. I’m sure we all have coping mechanisms to help us through these challenging times – it just so happens that mine is a crafting TV channel and, of course, Barbara Gray!
    Debbie x

  16. I completely understand where you’re coming from. 1st time round I must admit I was a hell if alot better than now, I feel a complete nervous wreck, can’t concentrate on anything, I feel completely exhausted all of the time, can’t stay asleep when I go to bed, then fight to stay awake when I’m up. I’m not nasty or snappy, I could just sit in a corner & cry, “like a cat on hot bricks” as my mam would have said. The only clear thing in my head at the minute are your words Barbra “This to shall pass”
    & I thank you for those little words of courage.
    Love to your mum & dad hope she’s doing well, you & Dave take care 😘

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