We all know what TGIF stands for, right?
THANK GOD IT’S FRIDAY!!!
Nah, not anymore. I’ve found something better for those letters.
Last month, Brené Brown shared her own version of TGIF on her blog and it’s brilliant. I liked it so much I decided to adopt the practice as my own, not just as a way review my week, but as a conversation starter with the people I care about. On Friday nights, Tim and I are often with family and friends, gathered around a meal or drinks. Bringing up TGIF is the perfect way to talk about something more meaningful than the sports or the weather. We usually end up getting a little vulnerable, laughing at ourselves and each other and inevitably veering off into ten different conversations we wouldn’t have had otherwise. TGIF is a recipe for connection.
So here’s the ingredients:
T – WHAT AM I TRUSTING IN?
G- WHAT AM I GRATEFUL FOR?
I – WHAT AM I INSPIRED BY?
F – WHAT AM I HAVING FUN WITH?
Maybe it’s not surprising, but the T is the one people have the hardest time wrapping their head around. Maybe it’s the way the question is phrased – the WHAT. We’re not used to thinking about what we “trust in” besides people, but there’s a whole range of underlying assumptions that get us through the week – things we’re counting on, hoping for, or expect to be true. One week, I answered, “I’m trusting the process” when I was interviewing for a new part-time writing job. After I got the job, I was “trusting in” my ability to do the work that was asked of me. Tim has been “trusting in” his body to hold up and allow him to do the things he needs (and sometimes wants) to do for another four months or so until he has his hip replacement. T gets us in touch with our deepest hopes and desires.
I think the rest of the letters are pretty self-explanatory, so I’m just going to share my TGIF for the week. Try it out tonight, or some Friday soon with your people
*If you have little ones (or people who are resistant to the TRUST concept), adapt it! The T can work as a Thankful and the G can move to – WHAT WAS I GREAT AT THIS WEEK?
T – TRUSTING IN
If you can’t tell from these pictures, I am TRUSTING IN the next generation. There is so much negativity about the “kids these days” – always has been and probably always will be – but I love hanging out with people who are younger than me – not just my own kids, but other people’s kids too. Not only are they hilarious, but they are also risk-takers, hard workers and deep thinkers to boot. When I can listen from a place of curiosity instead of doubt or judgement, I learn so much from their perspective about what’s going on in the world and where they think we’re headed. My 30-something friends are pretty awesome too, always ready to engage me in new adventures (like belly-dancing) and lovely conversations. (I love people my own age and older generations as well, but I’m TRUSTING IN the next one!)
G – GRATEFUL
This past week, I’m beyond GRATEFUL for the six nights that all five members of Team Kirks slept under one roof. That’s the longest stretch we’ve all been together in a year and a half. We had home-cooked meals, game nights, hot tub sessions, movie outings, and stops at Long Island Mike’s, our all-time favorite pizza place. I moved two college kids home and then moved one back out to Massachusetts her first post-graduate job in her field. Also, for the first time ever, we even had a moment where four members of the family were working at Wavelines at the same time. That’s a good day at work!
I – INSPIRED
Last Sunday, we saw Rocketman, the biopic about Elton John. Do yourself a favor – go see it. Not only was it a creative musical masterpiece, but it was also a beautiful, heart-breaking testament to the power of parenting and families, culture and talent to shape our lives. What I found most inspiring of all was Elton’s determination to overcome his addictions midway through his life. The film showed how much courage it takes and how difficult it is for addicts to choose to fully experience what it means to be human after years, or decades of running away from it. To face your trauma, to actually feel your pain, to learn new coping skills, to look in the mirror every day and see the unadulterated truth of who you are and all the ways you’ve been f*@ked over and then f*@ked up – Man, that deserves an Oscar, if not for the film, then for everyone who has ever gotten sober.
F – FUN
It’s always hard for me to narrow this one down, since usually I’m GRATEFUL and INSPIRED by the things I am having the most fun with, but, this week, I am having FUN with music. I am currently in a six-week personal training group at my local YMCA. I love my trainer and the people I meet, but man – it is hard work to eat well, drink water and exercise all the time! Whew! I cannot keep it up for more than these forty-two days, but Amazon Prime Music is keeping me company and keeping the tunes flowing. Big props to that next generation that keeps making some incredible and incredibly awful pop music that keeps my feet moving on those timed miles and countless lunges!
It’s a Friday afternoon here on the California coast, just miles away from the Pacific. Summer hasn’t really begun yet, but the sun is making a rare appearance this afternoon and it’s making me smile. I think I’ll grab a book that is TGIF all rolled into one and sit outside and read. In a few more hours, I’ll be ready to gather with my people ask the question: What are you trusting in these days? I hope you get a chance to ask them as well.