Y’all. We have so much to talk about. A royal wedding, Yanny and Laurel, a springtime snow, what your future self needs, not to mention all the things you’ve learned this season. So let’s get to it!

Welcome to What We Learned, where we pause to reflect on the past season before we move ahead into the future. At the end of this post, you’re invited to link up to your own list of what you learned this quarter – be it silly, serious, sacred, or just plain useful. I like to share a mix of all of those.

If you’re visiting for the first time from my podcast The Next Right Thing, welcome! We do this every quarter and will share our next list (What We Learned in Summer) on Friday, August 31. Grab your free printable list here to help you keep track and plan to share with us then. Now you can also share your list on Instagram using #wwlcommunity.

Here are things I learned this spring in no particular order:

1. I don’t mind a March snow.

That’s easy for me to say because it’s rare here in North Carolina. But it snowed in the middle of March this year and I found myself thrilled as I watched it fall down fast out my window, one last quieting, a final hush before spring.


2. On Downton Abbey, they never washed their costumes.

So basically they stunk all the time. They did have removable patches in the armpits, but I don’t like to think about this and also could that possibly have helped? This is a random fact I can’t forget.


3. Of all the gradual things in this life, watching as your kids grow up is perhaps the most exceptional.

The girls start high school in the fall and it feels equally shocking and like the most normal thing in the world. I have surprised myself with my current lack of overwhelm at this new impending life stage. Let’s see if it lasts.


4. If there’s something I miss from the past, I can find ways to invite it back into my life.

Rather than complain about how I miss “the old days of blogs” I went ahead and wrote a post like it was 2009. I loved every minute of it.

5. Your future self needs you to plan things before you think you need them.

One of the reasons those “old days of blogging” were so great was because it was how I met some of my current closest friends. Shannan Martin and I have been getting together for a writing/working/eating/talking weekend for five years now. This one was the hardest to find a date that works but we did it anyway and I’m so glad.

One year I go up north, the other year she comes down south. This was an “up north” year. Five years in a row and no plans to stop. I wrote more about this tradition two years ago (back in Chicago 2016) if you want to learn more about how we make it work.


6. When it doubt, take a walk.

Part two of that last one is Writing Day 1 in Chicago was a wash. It was our final day of our hope*writers launch so while I thought I could disconnect all day, that was unrealistic. I also just needed some time to settle in.

But Writing Day 2 started out with an early breakfast with Shannan, some inspiration from an Uber driver (that I ended up recording an entire podcast episode about), and a walk through parts of the city.

When I got back to my hotel room just before lunch, I was in a fantastic mood, ready to work. Sometimes it’s best to start first thing in the morning, but other times you need a little walk through the city to remember to see things from a new perspective.


7. “When the ego swells, the soul shrivels.”

Thank you, Dallas Willard, for these 7 words I’ll never forget.


8. If you have to decide between several things, pick what you like then see how it grows.

I put a lot of pressure on myself to make the “right” choice, but not every decision is between right or wrong. Sometimes it’s just this or that. I’m nearly 40 episodes into a creating a podcast all about decision-making, and this one line has hit a chord, both with me and so many of you.

9. I love black and white mugs.

Speaking of picking what you like, I’ve learned this season I’m just going to stick with the black and white mugs. I am happy about this.


And finally, the most epic and wonderful distraction of spring 2018:

10. We’ve learned what level of distraction and obsession we can (or cannot?) endure.

Lest you forget, this national debate about which name this voice was saying happened the same week as Meghan and Harry’s wedding.

You guys, we survived Yanny and Laurel and a Royal Wedding in the same week! I can’t believe the stock market didn’t crash or something. It’s a wonder we got any work done at all that week. I’m so proud of us.


I keep track of what I’m learning by using my seasonal reflection lists. You can get your own printable lists for tracking your reflections by signing up right here. If you’re new around here and want to know what, how, and tools to track what you’re learning, check out A New Page for Your Bullet Journal.

Some linking tips: 

  • Just use your name for the “link title” – it’s simpler
  • Be sure to link back here on  your post so your readers can join in!