Day 11 – Open the Vault

Image result for vault

I love lofty ideals, but I’m definitely more of a brass tacks kind of girl.  With that in mind, my challenge continues to reveal that I have a mission and a purpose.  I want to change my life in amazing ways by taking basic actionable steps each day in the actual world of reality.  My dream is to help others discover how to change their lives for the better, and I am my own guinea pig (cue “Man in the Mirror” background music).  Hopefully my words will speak to someone who needs to hear them.  And if that doesn’t happen, maybe I can at least make someone giggle.

In case you haven’t noticed, my communication style is all over the place. (Thank you James J. Cudney IV for your wonderful post that made me contemplate this. Although I sometimes take a softer approach, I can’t maintain that lane forever.  At times I am extremely direct and even overtly coarse, but it’s not intended to be offensive or hurtful.

For example, my husband might say, “Head to the bathroom to brush your teeth,” whereas I might opt for something along the lines of, “It’s time to get that monkey butt of those choppers!”  I think we can all agree that my version has an unrivaled level of finesse.

And on that note, I’m going to lead with the statement below, but please read a little further before deleting me from your life forever and ordering your own personal MoJo voodoo doll from Amazon.

We all have serious crap, we all have major hurt, and we all have terrible stories.

With that said, it’s most definitely a beast of a sliding scale.  I have experienced horrific things at different moments in my life, but I’m not going to pretend that I have a clue about the kinds of nightmares other people live with in their lives.  I will not say to you that I know where you are or how you feel.

But I do know that waiting for change to happen to you will keep you down.  Waiting for others around you to become the people you need them to be will keep you disappointed.  And waiting for life to stop and notice you when you stay hidden will keep you in the shadows.

Stop waiting.  Start doing something to get the life you actually want.

Below are some of the personal reasons I have leaned on to justify why I have remained in a holding pattern and hidden my light.  Speaking very honestly, I am extremely uncomfortable about listing these as I genuinely dislike admitting them.  However you can’t get to the goods unless you are willing to open the vault.

  • manic depression
  • OCD
  • anxiety disorder
  • ADHD
  • chronic pain
  • infertility
  • feeling less than
  • inability to see my own value
  • overwhelming work schedule
  • inability to be the kind of parent, wife, daughter, friend, employee and overall wonderful human I believe many others to be
  • debt
  • exhaustion
  • heartbreak
  • loneliness
  • feeling not good enough, smart enough, thin enough, etc.
  • uncertainty
  • fear

These are a handful of the treacherous battle flags I have flown against myself.  Thankfully I have taken several of those down but not all.  I am tired of hearing the remaining harbingers of hurt whipping around me.  I want to fly victory colors only.

I’m not saying that the cartoon birds are now taking flight around me as I sing sweetly and choose to pretend that reality isn’t kicking sand into my ice cream throughout the day.  I’m just saying that I want to find a way to turn all that sand into a beach instead of an unwanted mouthful of grit.

So here I am again.  Lofty ideals above.  Brass tacks / reality below.

Yesterday’s challenge period was spent watching a movie with my family, but I found myself thinking about the talk I had heard a couple of days prior.  I kept coming back to his recommendations and these questions:

  • What can I actually do today to change something for the better in my life?
  • What positive realistic step can I take?
  • What can I plan that I will be willing to do each day?

Ultimately I decided that I wanted to set at least three firm goals to complete each day.  They could be repetitive, but ideally, they would change and grow as the days passed.  Yesterday I chose the following:

  • Compile a file detailing specific metrics of my daily workload taks to help my manager understand why I feel inundated so much of the time
  • Examine last month’s spending activity and determine if there are areas that could be trimmed back
  • Have chore delegation conversation and discuss creation of family chore schedule

Those three items were actually quite significant, but they were all things I could either finish or initiate in earnest yesterday.  This is how they shook out.

I put together my workload task list to share with my manager.  He hasn’t seen it yet as I sent it last night, but it boggled my own eyes.  Even I was impressed with me.  Apparently he and I had both been in the dark about how much I was doing each day.  How could he possibly be expected to see my worth if I didn’t recognize it myself?

I exported one month’s financial activity to an excel file and classified them based on must pay for this or would like to pay for this.  I also looked at some of the bills that might have wiggle room (items like plan and equipment options or possible promotions for cable or cell service).  There absolutely were savings to be had.  I won’t be getting a boat anytime soon with those savings, but it’s still money I was not allotting effectively.  Also I adore the ocean, but I get terribly seasick.  Don’t be offended if you don’t ever receive an invite to sail on my future boat.  Because I won’t ever buy one.

And last but never least – the chore conversation and schedule.  I have developed a fantastic habit of being terribly angry at my family when they don’t do chores unless I ask them to do so.  To add to the joy, I have the additional tendency to burst into flames as my head spins madly while I scream in my best Exorcist voice “Just forget it!”  I then proceed to run them out of my fallout zone, and I do the chore(s) myself.  Must.  Stop.  That.  Madness.  NOW!  All of it.  So my husband, the older kids, and I each came up with ideas of how to put together a fair schedule to share and take turns on various chores.  The schedule we created only governed the next day (today), so one of my new goals (for today) consists of having another conversation with them to evaluate today’s results and take it several days forward.  It’s unreasonable to be angry with them if I am unwilling to break the pattern.  It will be a work in progress, but the point is that it is in progress.

What are three small things YOU can write down as goals to do today?  If your mind goes blank at the mere idea of this, feel free to test drive mine.  Here are a few other ideas:

Write something that brings you joy.  Read about a topic that interests you.  Make a list of what you do want.  Make a list to help you understand what you dream of having, doing, being.  Think of one small step you can take to get you a hair closer to whatever that may be.  Walk to the end of your block and back or even just walk to the mailbox.  Sit for three minutes and think of three things that are good about you – no matter how small they may seem.  If you have small kids, maybe you can try this when you take a bathroom break.  (Although if your children are anything like my own, you may find that heading to the toilet is akin to turning on an invisible but powerful kid magnet.  Why must they always find it critical to talk to me right then but scatter the moment I am actually available?)  Take a breath and be thankful that you can do that.  Pray for guidance.

Baby steps and small goals add up to big changes and major shifts.  Open the vault and find your treasure.  It’s there, and it’s up to you to unlock it.

Love and light always.  Joanna

22 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. wakinguponthewrongsideof50
    Jul 08, 2017 @ 19:30:21

    Great post. Thanks for your honesty and sharing! I know you can do anything you set your mind to. Future you!


  2. Tracy
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 00:50:33

    Writing is good. I hope your writing helps you as much as it does me to read them. You are VERY funny. 🙂 Keep writing and keep doing what you have to do to get to be where you need to be.. You’ll get there.


  3. foodzesty
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 01:23:39



  4. shalini
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 02:05:25

    Hi Jo, great post. Lofty ideas. I like the fact that don’t wait for people to change around u. I was waiting for Mr. Right. I think i dont want to waste time waiting, if he comes its fine. I want to get on with my life believing he will come when the time is right.
    After the jigsaw puzzle harassment, Amazon gave u redemption and made a doll in your name??? Or are they using it whenever u call them?? 😂😂😉😉


    • MoJo
      Jul 09, 2017 @ 10:16:26

      Hahahaha!!! You know it! They probably see my number on their customer service caller ID and then everyone races around in a last game of rock, paper, scissors to see who loses and has to take my call!

      Waiting for someone is so incredibly hard. How do you turn off heartache? I don’t believe at all that someone has to be in a relationship to be complete, but I do feel like the universe is telling you that he is out there somewhere if you feel that way. You should move to Texas and then I will start a fan club for you and my other amazing single friends! 😉

      Have you test driven the internet dating scene? Does that have the same level of popularity in India that it does here? If so, I would think that it would be a much faster way to weed out the guys who don’t understand your contemporary views and (more importantly) can’t immediately see all incredible things Fablini. You are amazing. You deserve amazing. Nothing less. I know undoubtedly he is out there. We just need to get you somewhere where he can see you!


      • shalini
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 11:43:20

        Oh woman, you are a darling all my yourself… Can i give you a big big hug for being such a beautiful generous you??. I think having a fabulous friend like you also decreases the restlessness in my heart. It feels like the world can take a hike when Jo is with me. Girl u making me emotional I have tears in my eyes. With friends like you, the universe will turn inside out sending me a guy… I am pretty sure like the Amazon guys, universe is also scared of you…
        I can just imagine the higher powers saying oh no here comes Jo…. Hide…

      • MoJo
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 12:43:00

        No the universe and I are tight friends! (I just forget that sometimes.) I feel the same about you sweet girl. I really really do.

  5. Steven D LeRoux
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 03:58:46

    Great post had to visit you, you visited me, Steve


  6. Blog Andrew
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 04:47:28

    Readers appreciate a writer’s honesty, even more so if the blog helps them in their own lives just a little…………. 😀 and I can only speak for myself but directness is absolutely fine.


    • MoJo
      Jul 09, 2017 @ 10:20:17

      You need a haircut. How’s that?


      • Blog Andrew
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 11:21:42

        This made me laugh, took a while to work out mind but then us men aren’t the sharpest tools in the box!

      • MoJo
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 12:41:35

        I wish you were my brother. We would have so much fun giving each other crap! 😉

      • Blog Andrew
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 13:35:07

        🙂 Yikes pressure, but like yourself I’ve written about depression in the past so I’m truly looking forward to reading those Posts.

      • MoJo
        Jul 09, 2017 @ 15:16:55

        I need to woman up and put more of that out there. At least I’m starting to put my toes in the water though. 🙂 Thank you for the encouragement Andrew. Hugs!

    • MoJo
      Jul 09, 2017 @ 10:21:41

      (also I don’t even know what you look like so you probably don’t need a haircut but it was the best I could come up with in response) (Of course I could have gone with “Thank you Andrew” but that seems too obvious.). 😉


  7. James J. Cudney IV
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 06:50:21

    Great organization here. And the 3 goals are good and strong. Helpful too. Love the way you discuss everything and the style in your words and thoughts. Thank you so much for mentioning me, too. I appreciate it. I look forwarding to reading more.


  8. magickmermaid
    Jul 11, 2017 @ 15:00:44

    Excellent post!


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