Over worked, over scheduled, exhausted and guilty.
I am pretty sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. I spent the majority of the past year trying to feel “caught up” and have things be “just right”. I would tell myself that if I could just get everything taken care of on my to-do list then I could actually relax and feel like things were taken care of- except that to-do list never changed. The things that needed to get done may have changed but the list was always there. I was saying yes to everything, stretching myself in a million different directions and running on Diet Coke and venti macchiatos from Starbucks. I averaged 3-5 hours of sleep per night. I didn’t exercise. I rarely ate a healthy, balanced meal. I kept telling myself a few more late nights and I could get caught up, just a few more. Before I knew it, the month of December was approaching. Where the hell did the year go?
I was spiraling myself into this vicious cycle of trying to get everything done while only adding more and more to my list. There were three pivotal moments that came in which I decided it was crucial for me to make a change because I could not sustain this lifestyle much longer without it having some serious consequences on my life. The first moment- anxiety attacks. Heart racing, chest pain, light headedness full blown panic attack. At first I thought it was too much caffeine but I quickly came to realize that it wasn’t that easy of a fix. The second moment was when my oldest daughter cried to me because we are cutting our nanny back to 2 days a week- she said I never have time to play with her. That was a knife to my heart. And the third moment was just a few weeks ago. I had a frame engraved for my youngest son with his name and birthdate. I took the frame out of the box and just stared at it for a moment because something didn’t seem right. His middle name was wrong- I wrote my older son’s middle name instead. I was so busy probably thinking about the next thing I needed to do that I wrote my son’s name wrong. That was the icing on the cake. I called my husband in tears and said this is it. I can’t do all of this anymore. I’m tired. I’m stressed. I ‘m done.
I knew that if I kept going in this direction that I was going to look back on my life in a few years and have an awful feeling of regret because I focused more on the things to do than what matters most- my family and my well being.
I love reading and of course I barely make time for myself to sit and enjoy a book. Recently, I came across a book at Target called “Grace not Perfection” by Emily Ley. I started reading and it brought tears to my eyes. It was if the author was writing about my life, not hers. It brought me relief to know that someone else felt the same way as me and was able to overcome and move forward. I then purchased her other book, “A Simplified Life”. These two books have been such a game changer for me. I feel as if I have a clear vision for my life moving forward and how to achieve that. I have already started to clear the clutter from my life- both mental and physical and it feels awesome. It’s all about taking care of what matters most and leaving margin in your life to actually enjoy it.
Looking ahead to 2018…
I believe that most things happen for a reason whether we know that exact reason at the time or not. I was never one for making New Years Resolutions but I love a fresh start. Last year I decided to make a few goals instead of resolutions. Some of those goals I met, some I didn’t. I am looking forward to the start of the new year as a way to mark this change in my life. It certainly won’t happen overnight or even in a month but more of a progressive change that will just happen in its own time frame. I have such a feeling of clarity and focus for the new year and I look forward to sharing it. I know that probably many of you are in the same position as me to some degree, maybe even more. I hope that through my experiences I can help someone else. We don’t have to be super woman. We don’t have to do it all. We don’t need to be perfect. We need grace in our life to allow ourselves to be happy, healthy and present.
As I move forward with this change, I look forward to documenting my progress or slip ups and things that I found helpful. If you feel like I do then I highly suggest you start by reading “Grace not Perfection” and also visit Emily Ley’s website.
Here’s to an amazing new year and a fresh start!