A couple of years ago it dawned on me, I had everything I wanted and needed but it didn't matter because I wasn't enjoying it. I was running from one thing to another just counting down the hours until the day was done. Somewhere in my busy schedule I had lost my joy and my happiness. I began to realized this was not a sustainable way to live. I wasn't present, my memory was horrible and I was completely uninspired. I wanted to run away, but I couldn't (I was too busy to run away). I had to STOP.
Looking back now I do have regrets about this time in my life, mainly because there are so many moments I can't remember because I was so busy and stressed. Moments with my small children that I wish I could have appreciated. Of course hindsight is 20/20 and being a sleep deprived mother is a form of torture that I have now escaped (for the moment at least). But, I truly believe stress is the killer of joy and thankfully my misery was a wake up call. It was a call from the universe giving me the opportunity to slow down and be present.
The thing is, I love to achieve (something else to work on perhaps), but I needed to find a way to be busy and be in the moment at the same time. I realized it is not entirely about my schedule, often it is about my state of mind and ability to be in the moment, let go of distractions and live. Truly live.
How can you do this? For me, I knew I needed to slow down in my head. I can still achieve what I need to, I do not need to panic. I do not need to think of what is next. I can move through each hour with ease, flow and appreciation. Accepting my day and schedule as it is and attempt to move through each task with ease. Any challenge is an opportunity to grow, take a deep breath and take on challenges with ease, grace and compassion for myself and others. I totally understand to many this may seem impossible and it might even make you feel defensive (ie: "You don't know what I have to deal with!"). Let me tell you I know that each day in not roses and some days are dark or a complete mess, but my perception of how stressful my day is completely dictates how stressful it actually is. Make sense?
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