The world is asking so much of us right now with timelines, expectations and outcomes constantly shifting and changing. It’s hard to keep up, which is my exact problem to begin with: feeling like I have to keep up.
I’m tired. Not just tired because I’m not sleeping enough (although…!) but tired to my bones kinda tired. Tired of the unknowns, the constant navigating and the lack of breathing room. Tired of busted plans, new logistics and ever shifting dynamics. I’m not here to complain but I am here to feel this. I’ve been ‘fine’ for a long time but it’s time to admit that tired doesn’t mean defeat. It’s ok to be tired. Tired doesn’t mean lazy. Tired doesn’t mean you quit. Tired just means you need to change your focus.
It’s easy to notice the hard things right now, especially when it feels like there’s many options to choose from. However now more than ever, I believe we need to be incredibly selective on what we are focusing on. We can’t do it all. In fact, if you’re like me, you need to do less. Feel like you’re not doing anything well? (**Raises hand**) Take that as a sign to sift and simplify.
Our energy is our most precious commodity. It effects every part of our attitude, day, relationships and output. You’ve heard the saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup” and that rings ever so true right now. With so much being asked of us we need be intentional about doing things daily that add to our joy (I call them happy things) so we can love our people really well.
Our worlds are smaller right now with our social circles including family members, a significant other and perhaps a few close friends and neighbors. These people are our life line, our very favorites, and these people should get our very best because they are the very best. The healthier we are (spiritually, mentally, physically) the higher our energy and then the ‘spill over effect’ takes place. When we are full from adding in our happy things daily, we have overflow to give to our people.
So let me ask you, what brings you joy? The big things, yes. But also the little things. The daily, little things. The people, the places, the experiences, the moments…what brings you joy? It’s important to know this and practice these things daily. To help get you started, let me show you my current happy things:
- Morning walk (fresh air, endorphins, coffee, quiet time with God)
- Music (Live, a favorite old jam or a new one)
- Fire pit in my backyard
- Being creative (painting, creative thinking, writing)
- Exploring new places
- Bike ride
- Driving in the convertible
- A thoughtful, engaging conversation
- Carefree time spent with my people
Take some time, sift through your current inputs. Not sure where to start? Before you go to bed at night, grab your journal and look back on your day. What moments did you feel frustrated? What or who contributed to them? Do less of those things. What moments made you feel happy? What or who contributed to them? Do more of those things.
Life is full. Sift through and make sure it’s full of the right things.
A wise friend told me if you’re feeling overwhelmed it’s time to change something. For me that almost always means do less. What is on your plate right now that you can eliminate, delegate or find an alternative solution for? I can get stuck looking out a window and overlook the door out right next to me. There’s always other options, solutions and ideas that can help you simplify. It will require vulnerability, asking for help and then actually letting someone help you (Gulp). No need to be a superhero here, friends. Let’s flip the narrative and let others see us accept help so they can be empowered to do the same.
Process with a friend, brainstorm with a neighbor or brain dump your ideas out on to paper. Then you can start to see what must stay and what must go. Give yourself permission for things to look differently this season if they need to.
Sift and simplify. Feel the weight on your shoulder’s lift, the knot in your chest loosen and the tension in your jaw relax? Do more of that. Lots more. Move forward with less but greater intention. Use this season to make sure you’re in alignment with what really matters to you. Let your days be void of what doesn’t matter full of the things that do.