How to Discover Your Next Steps When You’re Re-routed.

 

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If I had a dollar whenever someone asked me where Jeff was flying to, I’d be one wealthy woman!  The majority of the time I tell people, “I have no idea. His route changes all the time because of weather, late arrivals or they need him to fly a different trip then was scheduled. There’s no set route.” ( Go here to read more PW questions I get asked.)

As much as we like predictability in life, we know that life is anything but predictable. There are always constant changes and re-routes thrown our way.

So, my PW girlfriend let me ask you… Do you fly the same route? Do you have a specific itinerary for your day, your week, or even the next five years?

I know, I know. You must be thinking – Wait, you’re kidding, right?

I feel as if I always have to shift my routing from one place to another. Whether, it’s five minutes, a week or the next five years, I’m always thinking and praying about what’s next.

What’s the best route for me?

This morning I listened to a podcast, “Girls Night Out,” with Stephanie Wilson.  The guest speaker was Emily P. Freeman, who was sharing how she discovered what the “Next Right Thing” was for her. In other words, what is the next best route for me at this time in my life,  and for the season I’m in?

Listening to Emily, I started to question what my next step was. What do I need to be doing or changing in my life right now? It can be making goals you want to accomplish, losing weight, perusing a career or opening a business. It’s your journey.

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  What’s my direction?

We all find ourselves planning, preparing, and making a check-list for our day-to-day operations. But when life throws us off course and we are to figure out how to bring back focus that’s when Emily said, “Ask yourself what makes sense to me today?”

Thinking about that, I asked myself what makes the most sense for me right now and remembered I needed to take the clothes out of the dryer. ( literally, I was thinking that)

But yet, I still have more significant questions about the bigger things in my life. What makes sense for me to focus not only today but a month from now, six months or even a year from now.

Recently I’ve struggled to figure out what’s next in certain aspects of my life. To be honest, some of them cause my anxiety levels to rise, but at the same time I find myself more courageous as I pursue the things that really matter to me :

1. What to do about my writing journey? I’ve been writing continuously for a year now, and I’ve seen myself evolving and changing the way I think and write. I’ve been more willing to share my struggles and vulnerability that wasn’t there before. Don’t get me wrong I still struggle with opening up my heart. But as I sit down at my computer and search for the words that will bring hope and love to other women I’m compelled to keep moving forward.

2. What can I do to bring hospitality back into my life?  A Book Club, Supper Club, something that allows me to open my heart and doors to a community of women who enjoy reading, eating and sharing the love of God. But being hospitable requires courage to step out, invite others to join me, and let go my control. (which is a whole another  story!).

3. What is the next step in my season of parenting a teenage boy? I often find myself on my knees praying for wisdom and direction. At the moment I’m fearful of where God’s path may be in leading us concerning our son’s next season of life. Letting go and trusting that God knows what is my son’s best thing is hard.

When is all said and done, the heart question I need to be asking is: Am I willing to change my route or am I going to stay grounded in fear?  Sometimes that is a difficult question to ask.

These are the things that have me questioning my current flight path and the possibility of re-routing. I’m having to approach things differently as a woman, a mom, and a wife. For you, it might be something else.

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There are days when turbulent moments/events will happen.  When they do, I remind myself  of one of my favorite go-to verses: “Always let him lead you, and he will clear the road for you to follow.” Proverbs 3:6 CEV 

When it comes to offering advice on the best possible route or step someone should take, I’ll admit, I’m no expert. When I question my path, I rely on God to show me. He always makes it clear to me what my next route is.

What will you choose when things change, and you’re to consider when life is re-routed? What will be your next step be?

fullsizeoutput_4b1   Take-off and Landings always, Tiffany

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The 3 Items I’d Place in my Adult Backpack.

The three things in my backpackI’ve heard it said that Fall is like New Year’s for women, especially moms. New beginnings, new routine, and a return to structure have made its way back into our lives. It ’s a time to reevaluate our priorities and goals. It’s time to get back to the things we put off over the long days of summer vacation.

A few weeks ago I found myself at Target in the Back-to-School section. I had the overwhelming feeling of excitement as I walked past post-it notes, folders, pencils and pens.  Scanning the larger amounts of supplies, a certain backpack caught my attention. Before I knew it, I  was in the check-out line with this cute backpack!  

You might be thinking a backpack?

That evening while sitting on my couch with a glass of wine and my backpack I thought about what I would put in it.

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  1. Books I want to read and books yet to finish.
  2. A pretty journal to write down my thoughts, goals, and prayers.
  3. Post-it notes to remind me to take time for myself, of course with a new Sharpie.

To be a good mom, a good wife and to be the best possible me,  it’s important that I take the time to have my own backpack. One that is filled with things that bring me fulfillment and joy and peace-especially in those times I need it most.   

Cause let’s face it we all need that!

So exactly which books will I be placing in my backpack? Here’s a list of a few that I’ll be packing. (maybe a few of them will be of interest to you too! )

Non-Fiction:

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 The Fringe Hours Jessica A. Turner 

The Best YesLysa Terkeurst 

Girl Wash Your Face   Rachel Hollis

 

Fiction: Since we all have a different interest in fiction, I recommend that you read an old Classic that interest you as a child or Pick-up a best seller that you’ve heard people raving about.

Relationships:

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The 5 Love Languages- Gary Chapman

The 5 Love Languages of Kids -Gary Chapman

Boundaries  – John Townsend and Henry Cloud

 

 

 

Devotional:

100 days to Brave; Devotions for unlocking your most courageous self Annie  F. DownsIMG_0410

I admit, a few these I have only skimmed through and some I have read with a pen and highlighter in hand.

It’s been said that a well-read woman is a dangerous creature. I love that and am taking that as my homework assignment this fall. My goal is to read one of these books a month.

I don’t know about you, but I  want to be to a dangerous gal of hope, bravery, grace, love, and beauty, with a  little mystery thrown in.  The right book might just help me do that!

My PW friends, what would you put in your backpack?  Would it be books or something else? Leave a comment below. I’d love to know!

fullsizeoutput_4b1 Take-off and Landings Always, Tiffany

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Coffee in the Air

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Coffee in the Air talk (1)I’ve had the privilege of talking with a few PW’s about their window view of what it’s like being married to a pilot.  I’m calling them “Coffee in the Air” and it’s a series I hope to share at least once a month with you and that you hear from different PW’s on how they navigate this crazy, sometimes turbulence yet, wonderful, life we live.

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For my first chat, I had the fun opportunity to visit with my friend, Lisa North who I met a few years ago when Jeff and I were in the beginning stages of moving back to Texas.  As soon as we met, Lisa and I connected as if we’d known each other all our lives. 

So let me tell you a little bit about this amazing lady. Lisa lives in Dallas with her husband, Jacob, and their 14-year-old daughter, Sarah. For over five years, Lisa has been a Real Estate agent, handling residential and commercial properties”, as well as dabble a little in investment properties. Lisa is also the Cheif Operating Officer of the North Household, and she represents her title with honor!

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A dose of southern charm and Texas strong, Lisa is a woman full of love, strength and a heart full of passion for God! So listen in as Lisa, and I discuss the ever-changing flight plan of a Pilot Wife.

As we were catching up and talking about our husbands and flying, Lisa shared that her family is in a different season right now with Jacob’s job.  A few years ago, he flew over to “the other side” and now works at the SWA Headquarters in the Communications department.  “I miss him flying…just the other day I said, ‘I hope you fly soon!’ You get used to your husband gone for three to four days at a time; I needed me time!”

I had to laugh (and could relate) when Lisa told me, after sipping her coffee, that when he starts to get on her nerves he leaves and when she starts to miss him he comes back.  I’m sure you could relate! I know I can!

When I asked Lisa what she enjoyed about having Jacob take-off for a few days, she cheerfully stated,”I have complete control over the remote. I don’t’ have to cook dinner. I have time where it’s not distracted.”

With Jacob working at Headquarters he doesn’t fly as much — he only flies once a month to stay current. “Right now it’s been three to four months since he last flew. He’s been home every night,” Lisa says. One of the most important things about having her husband home every night is that he is there when their daughter has a special event or birthday.  Lisa opened up and said, “That’s something not to take for granted. He doesn’t fly as much, and that’s okay.”

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So what does Lisa say is her biggest struggle after all these years? As long as she and husband have been married, Jacob has worked in the office more than flown combined. “I still experience those PW’s challenges of trying to do it all. I feel everybody needs me and I’m running around crazy! The most significant challenge for me is balancing.” Can I get an Amen? I can totally understand that! 

Lisa continued to open up to me about another challenge she goes through which is maintaining and developing friendships. “Friends are essential in my life. “Over the years, I’ve realized that friends change throughout our seasons of life. Right now I’m in a season where I’m don’t have a close-knit group. I’m 47 and friendships are harder,” she tells me after taking her last sip of coffee. Lisa has two best friends that live in Georgia and when they reconnect it’s like as if they had just spoken the day before.  Those type of friendships are worth more gold!

I asked Lisa what advice she would give to other PW ’s, and I have to say I will fly away with some of her suggestions:

1. Try not to beat yourself up feeling as if you have to do it all yourself. It gets better cause you to learn to adapt to each season. You find a new way to cope!

2. Communicate constantly. Keep it open at all times, especially when he is home.

3. Cling to the Word, or find a devotional, that you read to get through those challenging times as you are navigating your way through family and raising children. 

4. Learn the art of adjusting. Especially in areas of raising kids. We must learn to grow with the changes and roll with those unexpected flight plans of life.

As I was talking with Lisa, she said something that was so profound it has stuck with me ever since, “Just remember it does get better cause you get better dealing with it” I don’t’ know about you, but that is excellent advice!

As we started to fly into our final descent, I had to ask what sort of things she enjoys when she’s not selling properties, maneuvering teenage life, or sharing the remote with her hubby. Surprisingly,  we discovered we both like shopping, taking walks, the chance to read in solitude with a nice warm cup of coffee —and hanging on a wing and prayer raising a teenager!

Lisa loves her coffee! She almost made me spit out my last sip of coffee when she told me that she loves going to Starbucks with her coffee and stare aimlessly at her laptop and do mindless thinking. What PW wouldn’t want to do that?

When our “Coffee in the Air” time landed, Lisa and I said our goodbyes promising not to let so much time go by without taking again.  I’m sure we could have kept on talking. But we both had responsibilities that require our attention and love. Until next time!

Love to know what connected with you in our conservation.

What kind of future “Coffee in the Air” chats would like to know more about it?

 

Take-off and Landings Always, Tiffany

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