Hi, Everyone! With Rene hosting the 2013 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration in Orlando, we wanted to try something a little different. We asked the moms and dads heading down to the conference May 9-12 to answer our Life Lessons questions with a Disney twist, of course. Like the GEMS they are, they took to the task. We will be running their answers in the regular Life Lessons slot. Oh, and don’t worry. You still have a chance to share. Just email Ella and she will get the information to you. Now, we present our Disney Social Media Mom of the day, Carla.
Are you happy at the moment?
I am. I believe happiness is a choice and it’s a choice I recommit to daily. In addition happiness, for me, meshes with gratitude. When I’m cultivating a life filled with gratitude I cannot help but be happy.
If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?
Don’t change. I clearly recall being sixteen, on a date, and asking the boy: Why did you not ask me out? (I’d asked him.) He responded: Because you didn’t wait for me to ask.
That sassy sixteen year old attitude of “not waiting to be asked and going after what I wanted” has served me well in life.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?
The year is still fairly new and yet I’ve learned an important life lesson already: you cannot write your next chapter if you’re still rereading the last. I’ve committed to spending 2013 looking through the windshield and not in the rearview mirror.
What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?
We recently moved from Austin, Texas to Oakland, California. I look forward to finding my place in this new community and figuring out how my family can contribute. We are firm believers in the quote “service is the rent we pay for living.”
What’s your secret to happiness?
Gratitude. Whether thankfulness for what I have or gratitude for the troubles I do not possess. I dedicate time each day to be grateful.
What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?
My workdays start early (ahh motherhood). I’m up at 4 am and begin working soon thereafter. Before I do anything, however, I meditate. Some mornings fleetingly. Others for longer periods of time. I used to mock the power of meditation until I realized meditation doesn’t change things—meditation changes me and I change things.
What’s your biggest regret?
It’s trite. It’s true. I have no regrets as all actions (even those not taken) have conspired to make me who I am today.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?
My daughter is seven. All I want for her is to know she is enough. She’s enough just as she is right now. I know we’re entering the challenging tween years (hold me) but for today she knows and believes she’s already enough.
What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?
I’m not sure it’s a bad habit—but I’d love to shift my mornings back a bit. I adore the morning. I bound out of bed at 4 am like a puppy eager to start my day. I’m useless come 9pm…
Aside from motherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?
Creating something out of nothing.
I opened a boutique personal training studio back in the early 90’s when personal training was fairly new (I’d frequently be asked: I don’t understand. What do you personally train people to do?!).
I sold the studio when we moved to Texas and soon thereafter launched my MizFit brand.
For me there exists a tremendous sense of accomplishment in creating something completely new.
Who is your favorite Disney princess and what has she taught you about parenting?
As a result of a promise she made to her father, Tiana initially works two jobs to earn money to open her own restaurant.
As a parent it can be easy to grow too focused on the child and not on the fact you are also someone’s child. And that someone had hopes and dreams for you as well. Tiana reminds me I’m the meat in a parenting sandwich. I’m a mother and a daughter; and my parents still have dreams for me, too.
What ten words best describe you?
I’m a misfit.
I only need five words:
I am my own superhero.
Carla Birnberg, AKA MizFit, can frequently be found frolicking her new ‘hood in her tutu. She blogs about all things family, fitness & personal development at MizFit online and is @mizfitonline on Twitter.
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