Part of using up my social capital comes from knowing and appreciating what I already have. That's also known as gratitude. Research shows that gratitude makes you healthier and happier. In a study, people who were asked to write daily about something they were grateful for were found to be 25% happier than those who were asked to journal about anything or to only write up their grumbles. My sweet friends Carmen and Victoria gave me a gratitude jar which I have been filling up with daily observations. Of course I am so grateful for the love, health, and abundance in my life, but I found myself reflecting daily about the little things that bring me joy day to day. Here is a sampling:
* Finishing a project
* Holding a baby
* Buying organic food
* African violets in bloom
* Have a heartfelt conversation with an aquaintance
* Holding hands
March went by really fast! I am not sure how successful my Use it Up campaign was this month - focusing on Social Capital, but I have had a wonderful, social, love-filled month of March, and for that I am very grateful. I have found that a month is a somewhat arbitrary allotment of time to complete a challenge, but it is enough time to focus attention and effort to get things started. I am still being quite frugal, even though February is long past. And now that I embark on my April goals, I find myself still dwelling on some of the things I wanted to accomplish in March - namely forgiveness (of myself and others), charity, and random acts of kindness. I will continue to work on these even as I start the April Use It Up challenge: repair and maintain what I have. This brings me back to the practical side of using things up. I've been organizing and making a list of things that need mending or repair and will share with you as I make progress.