Woman of the Week: Sharon

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Welcome to this weeks Woman of the Week

This week I welcome Sharon, who I went to high school with.  We managed to connect back up several years ago on Facebook and I am so happy to have her a part of my life as a grown up.  This list of questions are ones that I pulled from Tim Ferriss's book Tribe of Mentors and a few added in of my own.  And here we go....

1:  If you could have a gigantic billboard anywhere with anything on it, what would it say and why?

"Every day is a gift from God.  There's always something to be grateful for.  Enjoy something about today."  With the difficult times we live in, it's important to remember that life is a gift and there's always something to be thankful for.  It truly could be worse, and so much of our joy can come from having the right attitude and to be thankful.

2:  In the last five years what you become better at saying no to?

Having people in my life who are toxic.  I have realized that while I can still be kind, I do not need to let them in.  I will not allow them to suck the joy from my life.

3:  What advice would you give to a smart, driven college student about to enter the "real world"?

Stay true to yourself.  Know your priorities for life.  Have balance in your life.  Work hard for what you want, but make sure you leave time for you.  It's not all going to come at once, be prepared, you will have to pay your dues, but if you buckle down, work hard and play fair good things will come.

4:  What is one of the best or most worthwhile investments you've ever made? (it doesn't have to be financial in nature)

Time and energy into my husband and children and my other relationships and friendships.  I will never regret it.  My husband and I enjoy a deep meaningful relationship today based on layers of foundation we have built over all of these years.  I'm thankful that I had the sense to stop and smell the roses when the kids were little.  If they wanted me to come watch them ride their bike over a jump, I always stopped what I was doing to go watch them.  I knew those moments were fleeting.  I heard someone say that the only thing we can take to heaven is our relationships and I believe it.

5:   In the last five years, what new belief, behavior, or habit has most improved your life?

I've been through a journey the past several years of life not turning out the way I had hoped when I was younger.  I have learned to let those unrealistic expectations go and be thankful for the good things I do have.  I have dealt with my parents and my mother-in-law dying and these deep loses have changed me.  While I mourn their loss, I treasure what they brought into my life and it makes me think about what I want to give to my children and grandchildren.

6:  How has a failure, or or apparent failure set you up for later success?  Do you have a favorite failure of yours?

I can't think of a huge obvious failure, but I have small ones all the time and I do learn from them!  I believe failure is good because we are often times humbled by it and learn from it.

7:  What purchase of $100 or less has most positively impacted your life in the last six months or in recent memory?

I would say money invested in a big family dinner.  Bringing family together is so important to me and it's a wonderful gift to pass to my grandchildren.

8:  When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?

I pray, read my Bible and listen to worship music.

9:  What is the book (or books) you've given most as a gift and why?  Or what are one to three books that have greatly influenced your life?  

I give the Bible and a little daily devotional called Streams in the Desert because they are so encouraging and life changing.  I try to read my Bible or a devotional every day, God's word is alive and true and speaks to my heart every time I read it!

10:  What is one piece of advice you would give to a woman that you wish you knew earlier in life?

Don't sweat the small stuff?  Don't waste your time thinking you're not good enough because you are!  Concentrate on your positive traits and your gifts and work on the things you can, but don't engage in self-hate or self-sabotage!

11:  What do you think about the theory of "the love of your life", what does that phrase mean to you? 

For me it's my husband, Eric.  I met him when I was 16 and we've been together ever since.  He is my one true love.

12:  What is something that you would find most helpful in your life right now? (what would be the best problem solved for you) 

More self acceptance.  I'm working on it!  Accepting who I am and how I am made.

Thank you Sharon for taking the time to thoughtfully answer the questions and share a part of your life with us.  I have found it to be the most interesting and fun thing to connect back up with the people I knew from back in the day, we've all grown and changed with the years, lived life, had adventures, ups and downs and have so much wisdom learned along the way.  I picked Sharon for this week because we had a discussion recently about what she felt were some things that were pivotal in her long marriage.  Her answers were insightful and filled with love and on this Valentine's Day I wanted to make sure we all had a little more love.  What came up for me while reading her words is that she also has a very deep love of family and her religion, she has found what fills her heart and soul.

Check back next week for the next Woman of the Week, living authentic, unapologetic lives.