Social Capital Challenge

So, I signed up for the Social Capital Challenge at The Art of Charm, and the first challenge is to create a written goal & post it somewhere public.

[I actually signed up for this challenge a while back… like six months back, but am only now experiencing enough down time to dedicate said time and some serious thought.]

I actually have a few goals written down in the Notes app on my phone (thank you Chalene), but one of my (bigger) goals is to work on developing my strengths, or “natural talents” per my StrengthsFinder results (you have to pay to take the test, just FYI). To dig into those results and map out an action plan for developing what came back as my “Top 5.” According to the folks at Gallup, the most effective people are those who understand their personal strengths & behaviors, in order to meet (and exceed) the demands of their lives… And who doesn’t want to be more effective at everything they do, amirite?

My top 5 Strengths or “natural talents” are the following (and in this order):

*Futuristic – Visionary, a “dreamer who sees visions of what could be and cherishes those visions.”

*Adaptability – Flexible, ability to respond willingly to the demands of the moment even if they pull one away from their plans. Sudden requests and unforeseen detours are expected (not resented).

*Connectedness – Innate understanding that “we’re all connected,” that we’re part of something larger and as such this awareness and understanding guides the personal value system. “Bridge builder,” so-to-speak.

*Strategic – A distinct way of thinking that enables one to sort through the clutter & find the best route. Culling and making selections until you arrive at a chosen path (the strategy).

*Restorative – Problem-solver, who analyzes the symptoms, identifies what is wrong, and finds the solution. Restoring something to its true glory.

The cool thing about the results, is that along with a report on your top 5, you’re also provided with ideas on how to work on developing them – and this is where I’ve previously stopped. “I’ll work on that later when I have some time” has been what I’ve told myself ever since taking the test, but we all know that it won’t happen unless I carve out that time and schedule it. Like a doctor appointment. If it’s important enough to me, I’ll make the time.

Perhaps I map out a plan that is spread out over the course of six months to a year and I devote a month (or two) toward working on each strength, individually so I don’t overwhelm myself.

With Baby #2’s pending arrival in t-minus 2 weeks, my world is about to get cray in a hurry but if I at least map out a plan with actionable steps to take when I do make the time, I think that will help.

In the Homestretch

We’re under three, count ’em THREE, weeks away from my due date. I’m excited, and ready to have this baby already because I’m so damn uncomfortable, but at the same time I’m hoping she can hang on until Mom gets into town (just before my due date). I know ultimately she is going to decide when it’s time, but if this baby could just be a sweet little thing & hang tight, stay cozy for about two more weeks that would be awesome.

My hospital bags are packed, the bassinet in our bedroom is ready, the changing table is stocked & organized…Even the spare bedroom is clean & ready to go (for Mom’s stay). The only thing we haven’t done (yet) is buckle in the infant car seat boots in both of our cars but that can be done fairly quickly, I’m certain. So we’re pretty much ready.

Wait, I take that back – we still haven’t decided on a name.

My hula sisters threw me a surprise baby shower last weekend, and it was such a wonderful afternoon full of love & laughter. I was really surprised! I thought a couple of us were meeting up for lunch and to talk some business stuff, but when we got to the restaurant table and I saw all my sisters sitting there. . . Awwww! I was also glad I brought Isis with me so they could all love on her too. She doesn’t get to see her Aunties nearly as much as I’d like so it was very nice.

Mom will be in town for three weeks, and I’m so excited to have that time to spend with her. At some point while she’s here we’ll have to coordinate and have a 3rd birthday party for Isis. . . Maybe. I just don’t know how I’ll be able to pull any of it off. Post-surgery recovery (since I’m having a c-section), post-partum errythang, newborn baby in the house, sleep dep’d out of my mind. . . I’ll be lucky if I’m even coherent. May have to just have something very, VERY small and super low-key, or maybe I just postpone doing anything until late summer when I’m able to get more of my wits about me. My mom is not coming here for me to put her to work to entertain everyone else, she’s coming here to help me during that recovery period, and to spend some quality time with her grandbabies, who she rarely gets to see since she’s halfway across the globe and not, you know, fifteen minutes up the street. Honestly if I don’t host anything at my house for the rest of the year I’m really cool with that. But I have to do something for Isis, so we’ll see.

I’m looking forward to this maternity leave period and hoping I can just soak it all in and just ENJOY as much as possible. The first time around I was riddled with so much stress and anxiety, I worried that I was doing EVERYTHING WRONG, SO WRONG that I couldn’t just fully immerse myself and just… Be. Enjoy. Love love love. Not to say I didn’t love on Isis and smother her with kisses and coo at her, and all that fun stuff, but I also distinctly remember bawling uncontrollably at the drop of a hat, and worrying and stressing, and speed-reading and researching all the things, and stressing out some more, and more uncontrollable crying, and… Pffft. Those early weeks at home with her are all a hazy, distant blur at this point. And it went by so fast, too fast. So. My plan is to just enjoy. Soak it in, try to be as present as possible. Enjoy the baby, enjoy having Mom in town, enjoy that time at home with my girls.