Sunday, May 26, 2019

Parenting Tip - Do it Alone

Those who know me, know  I love to hike.  A friend and I have been hiking together for the past 10 years or more.  Lately my hiking buddy has had some physical problems that have kept her indoors, and this has really cramped my style.  Summer is coming with it's hot weather and we quit hiking then, so I've been desperate to get outside while I can and enjoy nature and the wildflowers--which are plentiful this year.

I decided I would just have to hike by  myself and even wished for about 2 seconds that I had a dog I could take with me.  I don't feel it's safe to hike alone, but as I was thinking back to some of our past hikes, I realized there are lots of hikes that are so popular you feel like you're walking on the freeway.  So Friday I went to Pinnacle Peak in Scottsdale and hiked alone--I mean with the other 300 people that were either passing me or I passing them.

And it was fun.  It's a different experience to do things on your own.  I never do things on my own, and just stay home if I can't find someone to go with me somewhere.  It was ironic, though, as I was hiking I was listening to a podcast entitled "Go Someplace Alone" (Gretchen Rubin Happier).  They were listing the advantages of going places alone, and there I was walking, listening and experiencing what they were saying! 

Here are some of the advantages I experienced:
I could listen to podcasts driving to the hike and while I walked
I walked my own pace
I walked further than my friend and I usually do because she gets tired before I do
I stopped and rested whenever I wanted to on the steep sections
I looked at the scenery and enjoyed nature
I took pictures to send to my grandson and didn't feel guilty about taking "one more picture"
I jogged on the down sections

I did miss my friend, but I learned a valuable lesson:  I can have fun and experience things differently by myself.

One of the podcasts I listened to while driving to  my hike was about not comparing yourself with others.  Good thing I listened to it and I even laughed at myself, because I  constantly compared myself with the hikers running past me or looking more stylish than me in their hiking clothes.

And speaking of podcasts, I enjoy pondering and thinking about the things I've heard on a podcast after it's over.  I always benefit from doing this and get thoughts on how I can incorporate the ideas I've heard into my life. This is a time when the Spirit can teach and instruct me. Sure enough, a couple of ideas came to me as I hiked down the mountain at the end of the podcast.

These are my favorite podcasts:
Happier with Gretchen Rubin
All In - LDS Living
This is the Gospel - LDS Living
BYU Speeches

Oh, here's another fun thing I do by myself.  I'm taking mandolin lessons and my teacher gave me a book of duets.  It's hard to get with others to play duets, so I record myself playing the piano accompaniment then I play the recording while playing the mandolin. It's nerdy, but enjoyable.  Last week I took it a step further and recorded me playing the mandolin while playing the recording of the accompaniment and --whoolah!  I've got a recording of me playing the full duet.  It's amateurish, but it was so fun!

What are you NOT doing because you have no one to do it with?  Can you rethink it and do it alone?  Can you use technology to help you?  Try problem solving the issue and you may find out you enjoy things on a whole different level when you do them with your best friend--YOU!

Thanks for reading,



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