How does one do that these days?
A shared insight on one of Deb’s Instagram posts sparked an entire conversation around the topic of grounded. Staying grounded. How we strive to attain it in this mad, mad world. What it means to each of us which, by the way, has had me pondering. What does staying grounded even mean to me? I know I use the phrase on occasion. I’ve heard it spoken around me many a time and am (always) guilty of nodding my head in acquiescence without once asking the one who mouthed those words, what staying grounded really meant to them.
Are we talking about being spiritually grounded? You know, all that warm, fuzzy feeling around the campfire (can you tell I’m a bit of a cynic?)? Or being emotionally grounded (levelheaded, humble)? Or are speaking in terms of experience, education, knowledge? Lord. So much to soak in.
Today, I choose to focus on living a grounded life, staying in touch with my emotions and thoughts, and, well, being as present in the moment as I possibly can. The question is how does that translate into actionable steps I can take on a daily basis?
I’ve broken down what I feel I can realistically do.
1. Live simply and live deliberately. By choosing to do my part to slow down the rat race. By choosing to spend more time to enjoy being alive.
2. Staying in touch with myself. Some soul searching, meditation, and journaling. Staying aware and learning as much as I can about my emotions, reactions, likes, dislikes, dreams, and fears. Working towards gaining a solid sense of self.
3. Support others as often as I can. Form connections with people. No (wo)man is an island and all that is really rather true. There’s being alone and there’s being alone, as most of us know.
4. Be judicious about what I read, see, listen. The media bombards us with visions of hate and pain, biasedness and intolerance. I must choose what I will allow into my being.
5. Acknowledge the beauty that resides around me. No matter where I call home, beauty exists in every corner, just waiting to be discovered.
6. Nurture my ties to my tribe (or tribes). Be part of a circle. Its members will be a source of support, caring, guidance, and companionship in a world which can often seem isolating.
7. See the larger picture. Widen my perspective and remember that the way I choose to live is not the only way to live.
8. Embrace the challenges that life presents to me, and challenge myself often. To never stop learning and absorbing knowledge, experiences, adventures.
9. Move my body. It is oh too easy to be sedentary these days. Movement reacquaints me with my body, and connects me to it in a visceral way.
10. Make time for stillness, silence, solitude. To reacquaint myself with my mind and thoughts.
I think 10 items is a decent, doable number 🙂
On a much lighter (and far more random but not so random) thought, the Fab 40s. This month, it was my turn (hurray!!). I knew from as early on as last November that I wanted to invite alumni member Sam to be my guest blogger when February 2019 swung around. And I did, shot her an email and all that, and was thrilled to bits when her response came back as a resounding yes!!!
Being the gracious hostess that I was (ha, as if, I’m such an antisocial person GRIN), I asked Sam to pick the theme for this month and when she replied with, “Let’s do Spring 2019 Trends Zebra. Or Neon. Or both?“, I swear, my jaw dropped so low I could’ve built a railway track to the underworld. After a spurt of sputtering and gasping, I asked if we could perhaps have a wee bit of middle ground? That perhaps we could make it any animal print, because I honestly don’t think many of us have abstract brush stroke-like patterned items of clothing that are zebra print garments lurking in the confines of our closets.
And that’s how it came to be.
The theme for this month.
L O R D A N I M A L M E E T S L A D Y N E O N
I confess, I did go out and purchase this neon number adorning the top half of my body but you must understand, I do not own a single neon item at all. I’ve always shied away from that particular palette because I’ve been convinced it does absolutely nothing for my colouring save make me look like Grace Jones without makeup. Everything else, I thrifted (so proud).
But enough of me.
Let’s begin the animal parade, shall we? Don’t forget to put on your sunnies first. I slay me.
Suzy, Suzy Turner
Subdued isn’t the word I’d use, Suzy, I think you mean classy. Not many of us would consider animal print as being something to be worn during the day, even lesser the number who’d pick neon + animal print, and pull them off together effortlessly as you have. I adore your interpretation of this month’s theme and how you’ve made two very stroke accents work harmoniously together in something very pared down and wearable.
Jennie, A Pocketful Of Polka Dots
I knew there’d be something pink in Jennie’s outfit, I just knew it. What I wasn’t expecting (which was silly of me given how she completely outdoes herself with each theme) was for an outfit that exuded such a polished, preppy vibe. Clearly those adjectives aren’t typically what you’d associate with neither animal print nor neon!!! But that she did, pairing a statement blazer with sleek top and well-cut pants, adding pops of bubblegum pink along the way.
Shelbee, Shelbee On The Edge
I always expect the unexpected from Shelbee, especially this month, given the curve ball nature of the theme I’d chosen (profanities abounded on your end too, huh LOL), and she did not disappoint. Serving up a buffet of saucy neon appetisers to whet the appetite for a sumptuous offering of exotic animal prints. Love all that, love even more the adventures you traipsed through to create this look. You’re welcomed GRIN
Daenel, Living Outside The Stacks
I was most curious to see how Daenel would go about tackling this theme. Prior months have witnessed her adapt with a deft hand, artfully steering themes into her style, with panache but you know, animal print + neon is rather a different beast of its own. Hasn’t she done it with absolute ease? A bright splash of luminosity in her sweater, tempered with classic denim (such a signature piece) and then touches of the wild side with those pretty flats. Bravo.
Now meet Sam (for those of you who don’t already know the inimitable Ms Fake and Fabulous). She is, to me, a walking rainbow, with a matching spirited disposition. An icon of all hues vivid and bright, both personality-wise and sartorially-speaking. The patron saint of pattern mixology. And my comrade in arms when it comes to saying it loudly, and most proudly. I am ever so happy to have her here, joining us this month, for my turn, and I am even more happy that her outfit is such an authentic rendition of who she is as a strong, confident, sexy woman who wears what she enjoys.
Sam, Fake & Fabulous
And then there’s me.
Truthfully, this was hard AF for me too!! But isn’t that the point? To come up with something that would challenge us beyond anything we expected, in the most fun and tribe-bonding fashion possible??? I do feel sorry that some of us had to go out and buy stuff (I am contrite, I swear I am) but I feel that everyone had loads of fun putting their bits together in this delightfully naughty encounter which has Lord Animal meeting Lady Neon (think Lady Chatterly’s Lover, or Lord Byron), and both absolutely fawning over each other.
Bright Lights, Big City, Neon Jacket (New York & Co) | Studded Navy & White Tank (Poshmark) | Zebra Print Palazzo Pants (worn tucked in, thanks to babe for the idea, and for the green zebra print bracelet, who knew, right?), Studded White Ankle Booties & Striped B&W Newsboy Cap (all thrifted) | Pink & Blue Bracelets (What Would V Wear)
I must also confess that I almost went super tongue-in-cheek rogue with a skirt that had teeny tiny zebras in a cute print, but I refrained. I figured that staying grounded also translated into staying true to my style aesthetics, and having zebras prancing all over my hemline wasn’t quite authentically me.
That thought did create a new one (you know me) which was this – just how much does how we dress, what we wear, influence or impact upon how we stay grounded?
Until tomorrow then, when I have a special project with my fab fierce friend, Debbie.
p/s I link up here.
Oh my goodness, Sheela…wait..wait…I have so much to say and it all came bounding upon me as I read through your post. Then I got to the end and I lost it all after I read your part about considering going tongue-in-cheek with tiny little zebras…because here’s the thing…I considered the same. The one and only neon thing in my closet was a white tee shirt covered in little neon pink unicorns (my spirit animal, of course). One and done and I was gonna do it. But it was just too easy. And I do not like easy. I have never liked easy. So I took the hard road and went on the best shopping adventure ever! Well, you saw the result. I couldn’t be happier. Thanks for always pushing me! Love you.
You always make me think with your words, Sheela!! And I have to say, that of course this theme was yours…who else would name it that. And I mean that as the biggest compliment!
I just have to say, you had me at white boots. It’s the idea for us this week too. Can you believe my mom and Nancy bought some? Without me asking them to?? Seriously, they are rocking it!!
I think you met this challenge head on, Sheela, I love, love your outfit. I would never thought of wearing neon and animal print together but you proved me wrong.
Love the look! Your post is really inspiring. Thank you
This look so good, i need some white stiletto boots like these! I will try to copy this, as I love it. Thanks for sharing. Jacqui Mummabstylish