How to Stay Inspired at Your Day Job!

I think one of the hardest things for millennials to get a handle on is the forty-hour work week. If you’re like me, you spent four years in college taking classes at random times throughout the day and spending your free time drinking coffee with friends and studying late into the night. The thought process throughout college was always “as long as the work gets done!” Meanwhile, you have four to five months of intense work, followed by weeks of vacation time that is filled up with internships, vacations, and a carefree mindset.

stay inspired at your day job

Then you enter the “real world” and the idea of having months of vacation time is a thing of the past. Your workweek is long and monotonous and free time doesn’t exist. Getting work done at midnight? I haven’t seen midnight in years! (Ok, that’s a lie. Having a newborn, I’ve seen all hours of the night. However, that doesn’t mean anything productive is happening!)

It’s tough to stay inspired and not to get burnt out with this yearlong, grueling schedule – but it is possible. It just takes a little effort and realizing how lucky you are!

1. Change your perspective.

It’s easy to become a neg-bomb, spreading negative energy everywhere you go. However, when you realize that you are one of the lucky ones to have a job, it truly makes you appreciate the little things. I was laid off from a thankless job about two years ago. I hated that job, but once it was gone, I would’ve done anything for the little bit of money and a place to go every day. If you’ve never experienced unemployment, you are truly fortunate. Yes, it sucks waking up every morning and going through the motions, but at least you have some money in your pocket and you are ultimately advancing your career by staying employed. Count your blessings!

2. Get up and walk around!

The longest days at the office are those where I see nothing besides the inside of my cubicle. Even if I have no destination, I make sure to get up and go outside for a few minutes a day. A change of scenery will work wonders!

3. Listen to music or podcasts.

If you’re lucky enough to work in an office that allows headphones, use it to your advantage. There is rarely a day that goes by that I don’t listen to Pandora or stream my favorite podcasts. Not only does it help the time pass a little, it also connects you to the outside world. Need some podcast suggestions? If you’re a Bravo TV fan, you have to check out Watch What Crappens. I enjoy listening to 60 Minutes Podcasts and ESPN Podcasts,too. And of course, there’s Serial.

4. Set goals and accomplish them.

I’ve gotten in the habit of making a “to-do” list every Monday morning complete with every task I need to get done throughout the week. I like to challenge myself by trying to get my list done as early as possible in the week. Usually, I have to add a few items later than Monday, but that’s nothing like crossing off an entire list knowing how productive you’ve been. It’s also a great way to keep track of everything that you do on a day-to-day basis. This way, come review time, you can show your manager everything you’ve done!

5. Decorate!

I work in a cube-farm. Typical 7-foot, gray cubical walls separate me from my closest co-worker. It’s drab… really drab. And even though I work in a creative place, my officemates don’t believe in splashes of color anywhere. That doesn’t mean, however, that I can’t fix up my little corner of the world. I’ve decorated with personal photographs of David and Juneau (and when I get back from maternity leave, Finn will join as well). I bought a succulent that sits next to my computer and my desktop image is a photo of us on our wedding day. It’s little touches, but it makes it more personal and reminds me of what I go to work for everyday.

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Welcome to Simple & Inspired!

Fall in Love

Welcome to Simple & Inspired! I started this blog because I find myself going through the motions every day and I wanted to provide myself and others some inspiration that we can all act upon. Some days it takes a little more motivation than others to get my butt in gear, but some days, all it takes is a simple quote, a beautiful sunset or a glass of wine to make me feel excited about life!

So what am I trying to inspire you to do? Well, to put it simply, I want you to live this life with true intention. I want you to gain a new perspective and to look at things with a fresh eye. It’s easy to get lost in the drudgery of daily life, but the most memorable moments are those that make you realize that you are truly living life!

Now, I’m not a corny person. I am fairly down to earth and reasonable. However, I have always had a side of me that wants to create. It has only been recently that I believe that creative side needs a focus. I work in corporate marketing, so I am able to earn a paycheck doing something I enjoy. However, there is the monotony of the day job that I want to get away from, and this blog is my outlet for that. In the meantime, I hope to inspire you and help you find your passion.

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Pregnancy Update: 23 Weeks

How Far Along: 23 weeks!

What is Baby G Up To?: Baby G is the size of a grapefruit! And is growing by the day. (And so am I!)

How I’m Feeling: I finally got over a cold that had been lingering far too long. That, combined with the snow storm that hit us over the weekend gave me such a bad case of cabin fever I have been hitting the gym at night after work just to get out of the house a little. It feels good to be working out again, although most of the time while I’m jogging or lifting weights I feel stares from other people around me! It’s a baby, people.

What I’m Wearing: Fortunately today it’s warm enough to wear a dress and heels. I’ve been getting sick and tired of pants and boots the last few days. Despite the snow, I feel spring weather in the air which makes me excited for long dresses and flip flops in just a few short months.

What’s On My Mind Lately: David and I have been laying in bed at night feeling Baby G kick and move. The baby is active as ever, and we have been having conversations about what kind of person our baby will become. Although it’s such a normal thing, growing a child inside you is so bizarre. I know baby is in there, and I know baby will be here soon, but the concept of it is just a little bigger than I can grasp.

What I’m Craving: I needed a salad after days of eating leftover chili! Finally, some greens in my life!

What I’m Looking Forward To: Springtime! Over this snow!

Best Moment of the Week: We received a few gifts in the mail over the past few weeks. With our New York shower in just a little less than a month, our loved ones have been picking through the registry and shipping us gifts. It’s so fun to see all of Baby G’s stuff accumulate!

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Wedding Photos: Our Wedding Party

How glamorous did our wedding party look?! Okay, maybe glamorous isn’t the right word to describe a backyard wedding, but I cannot imagine a better looking of people. David wanted a relaxed look for his guys, so he chose a white dress shirt, blue khakis, and a leather belt. For shoes? His favorite… flip flops! We got more than a few strange looks when we told people our groomsmen were wearing flip flops, but I went barefoot, so it was a good choice. David’s groomsmen included his brother, best friend, cousin, uncle, and a friend he served with.

When I picked my bridesmaids, I knew it would be difficult to get us all together to try on dresses before the wedding. My older sister lives out in Denver, I live in Virginia, and the other three all have pretty conflicting job schedules. So instead I asked them all to find a pink/cream/champagne dress, and they each found the most beautiful dress for each of them! My favorite moment was when I walked out from around the corner after putting my dress on. They saw me for the first time, and I saw them! It was so emotional. I had two of my lifelong friends and my two sisters in my wedding party. David and I figured with such an relaxed and personal ceremony, our wedding party didn’t have to match. Instead, Carrie just got to walk two guys down the aisle ;).

Another favorite thing we decided on was having a combined head table with each of our attendants’ dates sitting together. It’s always awkward to be the date of a guest who is in the wedding, so we thought it would be nice to give everyone a spot at the table with us!

Thank you to my wonderful photographer, Rajaa of I Romanticize for all of these wonderful memories!

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Engagement Photos

engagement photos

Last weekend, David, Juneau and I braved the cold temps and headed to the Boar’s Head Inn to take some engagement photos. A friend of David’s mom, Lisa Harlow, offered to take the photos for us. She told us up front that she was no professional, that she just liked to take photos for fun. Well, let me tell you, I don’t think the photos could have turned out better! She certainly doesn’t give herself enough credit. We are absolutely in love with the photos! (Best part is, they are completely unedited! She mentioned putting some into PhotoShop to touch them up, but I didn’t even have to do that. Other great part? We walked away with over 300 photos to choose from! I can’t thank her enough!) So here are some of my favorites. Even Juneau decided to model it up for a few 🙂

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