The importance of positive thinking (and a great puffy sleeve)


DRESS white puff sleeve mini dress (also in black, wearing size US 2) | SHOES tan and black espadrilles (similar linked, gold and white available here, straw and black available here) | BAG belmont structured tote | EARRINGS rattan earrings (sold out, similar here)
Happy, happy Monday friends! Wow. It has been quite a while since I’ve brought a "typical" outfit post to Lonestar Southern. This was actually photographed about a week before things started getting crazy and for whatever reason, I’ve held on to the photos until today.
I think the reality is that the thought of heading outdoors to shoot fun spring looks, even right outside of our own back door like we did in this post, feels a bit odd. That’s why you’ve been seeing lots of collage posts and photos around the house lately, and I hope that’s ok! Hopefully, we’ll be back to regularly scheduled programming soon enough.
That thought, actually, brings me to what I wanted to briefly talk about today: the power of positive thinking, especially the middle of uncertain times. Obviously, this is not a new concept, and I’m certainly not trying to pen anything profound this morning. What I do want to do, however, is remind you, and hopefully encourage you, with something I lost track of a couple of weeks ago.
You may have heard me refer to the "off" week I had. I was in a funk non-stop, believing thoughts like "At this point, I should have things figured out!" and "We’ve been social distancing for weeks now, I need to have found a way to be as productive as I was beforehand." I spent a solid week feeling like because we were a few weeks in, it was high time I had adjusted, adapted, and figured out how to keep things rolling as usual.
After a week of feeling miserable, I realized those narratives weren’t working. So last week, I decided to start Monday afresh and switch up my mental script. And here’s what I reminded myself of.
There is no timeline on finding a way to feel "normal" in this season.
No measure of productivity is ever going to bring me lasting contentment.
It’s worth focusing on and enjoying the rare blessings of this season rather than rushing through them to get back to "normal."
I think I realized, maybe for the first time in my life, that I tie a lot of my self-identity and self-worth into how much work I can get down, how much I can create, how many blog posts I can put together in a week, and the list goes on.
I let go of that pressure last week, and it was the best week I’ve had in a while. And I intend to do the same this week.
So if you find yourself stressed out, overwhelmed, and beating yourself up because you can’t seem to "get back to normal," know that you’re not alone. And even though everyone is trying to put on a normal, brave face and carry on as usual, everyone is feeling a level of this.
This week, let’s do our best and nothing more. Let’s be ok with trading in our usual level productivity for a new measure of rest. Let’s look to the One who always satisfies rather than our own strength to keep ourselves happy and fulfilled. Let’s switch our thinking from continual-pressure to continual-positivity.
In the middle of everything going on, I think that one shift will allow us to have a really great week, and then another one, and then at the end of all of this we’ll look back with gratitude for the rest we let ourselves sink into and the rare blessings we let ourselves enjoy.
For me, in particular, I’m going to be doing my best to continue to create colorful, fun, uplifting content. I’m going to be diligent and stay focused to the best of my ability. But I’m also going to enjoy another rare week off with Andrew. I’m going to embrace the extra time for long walks and deep conversations. And I’m going to be ok with being a little bit less productive than usual. What does it look like for you?
"The Lord is my strength and my song,
   and he has become my salvation;
this is my God, and I will praise him,
   my father’s God, and I will exalt him."
Exodus 15:2
Thank y’all for letting me get on my soapbox. :) Writing this out was really therapeutic for me, and although this is nothing profound, I think it’s a reminder we all need during this season!
Oh… and about the puff sleeves! Can we all just take a moment to be thankful that loose, flowy silhouettes are in this season? Give me all the easy, breezy dresses, like this $30 piece in today’s post (also comes in black!), and let us vow never to go back to bodycon. Deal?!
Love from the Sunshine State,