a thankful future self

i found this lovely print from minna may over the weekend and i was captivated by it. captivated by the thought that i can do something today that my future self will thank me for. i can think of many times when my future self didn’t want to thank me – it said “why didn’t i do this yesterday when i had time” OR “i should have done the dishes already now they smell bad” OR “what was i thinking?” OR “why didn’t i study for that test”… the list goes on.

what would it be like to look back and thank myself? i sit here now and i can also think of many times that if i had thought about it, i would thank myself like “i am so glad i finished this project before i left for vacation” OR “i am glad i spent time in the Word this past week” OR “i am glad i decided not to eat that cheese pizza because now my tummy is happy and not gassy (for us lactards)” but i have never intentionally thought this phrase & i am in love with the idea.

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what would your life look like if everyday you did something that your future self would be thankful for?
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i think you would be more encouraged and enjoy yourself and your time more. now, i am not saying that everyday you need to do all your chores so that tomorrow you have none (unless you want to do that for yourself!), i am saying that each day you should be aware of your actions and attitudes and look toward the impact that will have on the future. 
FIVE THINGS TO DO TODAY TO CREATE A THANKFUL FUTURE SELF:
1. EAT HEALTHY & STAY ACTIVE :: this is kind of cliche, but think about it – if you eat healthy today you will feel better tomorrow. if you take the stairs today (and everyday), that beautiful hike you want to take your kids on wont leave you so out of breath. eating right is a day to day thing. IT IS NOT A DIET. you don’t eat healthy for two weeks then eat crap until you need to go on a diet again. you chose that apple over a second bag of chips because you know that your future self will be thankful that you are active and healthy. 
2. SPEND TIME IN THE WORD :: i know that i crave Jesus. and times that i make time for a quiet time change the course and attitude of my day. i have mentioned it a couple times on my blog (why breakfast is important & bible reading plans) and i argue that quiet times are one of the most important things we can do. yet we (i) don’t do them daily. wake up 10 minutes earlier and sit on your porch with your coffee, read a verse or a chapter, and pray. you future self will thank you for those 10 minutes. and who knows, you may end up like my father who sits at the coffee table every day at 5:30am and spends a whole hour with Jesus before the rest of the house is up and the day has begun. i know he thanks himself for one day actually making time for it. 
3. TIDY-UP A BIT :: when you walk by that coffee mug filled with old, cold coffee – pick it up and take it to the sink. rinse it & through it in the dishwasher. when you are forced to do the dishes because you are all out of things to eat with, you spend so much time scraping old peanut butter off plates and scrubbing coffee stains out of your mugs (and it makes you feel yucky). OR take out the trash before it spills over the top of the trash can OR hang your clothes up when you try them on and don’t want to wear them OR wipe up that toothpaste spill in the sink…a little tidying up today can save your future self from a major cleaning endeavor (which just makes you want to keep putting it off until the “next day”)
4. DREAM :: let yourself escape your stress bubble and just dream. think about your next vacation, find a new hobby to embrace, think about what you want to do with your life and then think about how you can get there. dream about house projects and surprise parties. think about something else besides “getting through the day” i know your future self will thank you for being creative even in the mundane. 
5. BE BRAVE :: do something about your dreams! start a savings jar for your dream vacation, enroll in a photography class, open up your etsy shop, try that DIY stripped wall on pinterest. so often our dreams get stuck in the clouds and we never let them actually touch our lives. if you can dream it, you can do it. it might look different than you had first imagined but you never know until you try. let today be that day. and your future self will thank you for it! 
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what is one thing you are doing today that your future self will thank you for?
what is one thing you have done in the past that you are thankful for?

Author: Oak & Oats

  • this is so beautiful. i love this quote! it's true, more often i find myself thinking of the things i should have done. i definitely want to live life more intentionally, with an open heart and an open mind. thanks for this wonderful reminder ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I'm feeling so inspired by this post! I've never thought about it like that before, but now I really want to try to do more things for my future self. Your list was a perfect start for me! I know that I definitely feel much better the next day when I eat healthy and spend time with Jesus. I just need to make it more consistent! Thanks for the push, girl ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I love this! So motivating. This sounds silly but I am always thankful when I make my bed before I go on vacation. It's such a great thing to come home to!

  • This is lovely…and so spot on! I was nodding along with everything on your list!! Thank you for gentle encouragement =)

  • "so often our dreams get stuck in the clouds and we never let them actually touch our lives. if you can dream it, you can do it." Um, this is the best encouragement ever. Loved this and thank you for encouraging me to be brave! There are so many dreams that I have right now and reading this was the best medicine my fearful self could get. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Just found your blog and so glad that I did! Great words of encouragement ๐Ÿ™‚ thanks for sharing!

  • I love this post! The quote is wonderful and all your tips are spot on!!!

  • Very inspiring girl! Thanks for the tips.

  • What great advice! I know I'd accomplish more and feel better in the present if I kept a future perspective of thinking about what I'll be thankful for doing. Great thoughts Elizabeth!

  • thanks for inspiring me, i've been so moody today and this perked me up

    Xo, Megan, http://www.TfDiaries.com

  • Christian Women

    Incorporating those small tips can really make a great impact on the flow of our day. Thanks for linking up at Blogs by Christian Women.