When you think of feeling good it often refers to how our bodies are feeling, what our energy level is like and our mood. It is an alignment of all things adding up to some yummy feel good sensations in our mind, body and overall being. It’s like we don’t have a care in the world and if we do they are things we can easily accomplish and won’t slow us down. It’s our energy feeling like it will never run out and we can go through the whole day feeling motivated, challenged but accomplished and confident. We move gracefully from activity to activity and things just fall in place. All because we feel our best.
Instead of moving from activity to activity with anticipation and energy though many of us are dragging through our day tired, stressed and anxious. We are grabbing food during meetings where there’s no time to get away from our desk. We are on the phone and laptop all day followed by a quick rush to get the kids and start our evenings. At home we again rush to get dinner going, homework started and a quick glance through the mail. It’s constant and it’s what many of us call a normal day. There is not much for leisure or breaks. We drop to the sofa or our bed at the end of the day just to wake and do it again tomorrow.
Most of my friends are tired. Most of my friends have days like this one where they go non-stop all day. My days are like that too in large part. We just do these things because that’s what we have to do or are supposed to do. It doesn’t matter what we feel like either. You just do it. You push on and figure you’ll get a break as soon as something else is done. As soon as… those words are always teasing me. There are truly days where I think if I stop I’m not going to start again. As soon as all of it is done though I can finally have that break.
How many times have I put a “as soon as” in front of something I needed? As a mom and wife, single income family provider and small business owner I do it all the time. As soon as I get this blog post written. As soon as I finish work today. As soon as the house is cleaned. As soon as I get back from the grocery store. As soon as. By the time it gets to the as soon as time I’m quite tired and not caring what I said I’d do as soon as.
I would like to blame ‘as soon as’ for the lack of energy or why I’m so tired. I’d like to say it’s the constant demands and deadlines I strive to accomplish each day. Balancing feeling great and ‘as soon as’ things can be quite challenging. As soon as I can get to bed earlier I can wake up earlier to exercise before the family gets up for school and work. As soon as I get pass this big project at work I can get on a diet and meal prep. I’ve played the as soon as game for a long time, trust me you never find the time or end to the as soon as criteria.
You can’t live your best life possible if you’re constantly going against a litany of as soon as things to complete first. As soon as ties our hands against opportunities and against ourselves. Women especially are known for putting everyone else first before their own needs. As soon as the family is fed I can fix my own plate.
Changing that to focus on feeling our best so we feel good is challenging. We feel guilty at first. We feel conflicted. We realize our own powerlessness against the demands in our life so it’s just easier not to try. How many times have I foregone something I needed or wanted because my son needed new shoes or something for school? How many times have I scrimped on dinner with food not so healthy but cheap because I needed to stretch the grocery budget? We all have to make these choices at times and while never easy we do what we do to survive, care for our families and meet the demands of our life to make those things possible.
It all starts with realizing we are on this endless cycle of as soon as items that are not fulfilling and they are actually taking more away from us than we realize. It took me a long time to realize it was ok if my son went to school in mismatched socks. I still don’t like it but he’s happy and comfortable and his feet have socks. It was a battle I just realized was causing me stress neither my son or I needed in the mornings before school. The as soon as he had matching socks we could leave for school went away. We both felt better and it was one less thing to take up space in our morning. Granted I do try to make sure he has matching socks laid out the night before but if he doesn’t I don’t fight it anymore. How many of these things were filling my day? How many of these things were stopping me from feeling good or having a good day? Matching socks are minor in comparison.
I have realized that the as soon as things in my life weren’t really adding value most of the time. My own view of how I thought things were supposed to be done was generating a lot of as soon as chores in my day. I was spending my time fulfilling these things in my day that weren’t really making me happy all because they were told to me as something I had to do as a mom, wife, employee, small business owner and all the other roles I fill in my day. Yet when I let go of some of them I felt good. I found energy free from bounds of things that were just generating noise in my day. It’s not easy identifying or releasing these as soon as things but it sure feels good.
Replacing areas of my life with things that support feeling good is in alignment for how to live more naturally on your terms. It is how we start to move to things that are truer for our needs and give us that deep satisfaction of accomplishment. We look forward to them rather than dreading them – even when it’s something we have to do! Some of this is indeed letting go of things that are not worth us getting upset over but actually it’s much deeper. It is about knowing what we need and want and what is right for our family and letting go of the expectations, must do, as soon as things that are set on us by society. It’s knowing it’s ok to say no to what isn’t right for us.
It’s actually a good thing that parenting and adulting don’t come with manuals. Without the manual we get to define how it’s done and make it our own. We get to generate the answers to things we don’t know yet and find things that work in alignment to our needs. We get to define our own path. Where I think we have deviated from this opportunity is when we fall for the trap of thinking we must do it just like everyone else and there is only one answer. My opinion is at the point it starts to become a “as soon as” feeling though and we don’t feel good anymore we know it is not the right answer for us. Let’s make the year 2020 the year we start feeling good more often.
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