While it’s fine that I adore her, it seems only right that I spend more time celebrating my successes than hers. Right? -Jessie
With such a huge social media presence in today’s culture, it’s normal to read about and in some ways live vicariously through those we admire. Whether it is our favorite glowing celebrity or our hot-to-trot next door neighbors that we follow online or in person, we watch. The hopeful result is that we will feel motivated to adopt the valuable habits, and avoid the ones we deem bad ideas. Personally I love having a million places to find motivation. However, it can be rough constantly trying to find ways to be better. Instead of it feeling like being open to bettering, it can feel like constant dissatisfaction. I suppose it depends on my mood. It got me thinking. Instead of studying days in the lives of superstars outside of me, maybe I should slow down to appreciate and fine tune an average day in my own life. After all, Reese Witherspoon doesn’t even know I exist. While it’s fine that I adore her, it seems only right that I spend more time celebrating my successes than hers. Right?
So what does a day in my life look like? Am I happy with it? On an average day, am I the woman I aspire to be? Am I the mom, the protector, the wife, the businesswoman that I am proud to be? Am I good enough to myself? Do I allow myself enough room to breathe? Do I offer myself the same courtesy I give others? The list goes on and on. This is deep stuff, but actually really healing. I have spent time recently asking myself these little questions here and there. It’s interesting how much it has impacted my thoughts and my actions. In reality, as a busy person who wears many hats, each day is different. However, on a normal day, I am making a goal to be happy with the choices I make. These choices should be good and wholesome for me and those I hold dearest. They shouldn’t be stressful, but uplifting. They should represent growth and not turmoil.
What does this look like and how might small choices make a significant difference in my life?
- Scheduling everything, including me time. There is nothing more stressful than having too many things to accomplish in a short amount of time. Maintaining a strict routine (especially with little ones), and warding off procrastination maximizes efficiency and even allows for a little me time. Whether that allows me time to work out, blog, or get a pedicure and wander aimlessly in HomeGoods, it’s delectably necessary and healthy.
- Working in working out. Like many others, I find myself making tons of excuses on why I couldn’t fit in a work out. I don’t want to go into a meeting sweaty, no time for shower, I don’t feel good, too many more important things, etc. I have decided that it can’t be all or nothing. I need to fit in movement however and whenever I can. Even if it’s 10 squats while I brush my teeth or climbing under my desk to do a minute long plank, it’s something. It has become a fun challenge and those little tiny things add up. If nothing else, I make sure to walk as much as possible and take 10,000 steps most days, even with a 9-5 schedule.
- Creating my own trends. It’s easy to get influenced by those around us. We go buy suggested face cream and vitamin blends. We take on strict diets created by other people. While it’s wonderful to benefit from the research of others, I think it’s important that we appreciate our own instincts. We should not be afraid to pave our own path and do it our own way. From our dietary preferences to our unique clothing style, we know us best. There is power in research and experimentation. There is nothing better than coming up with our own recipes, diets, exercise routines, and styles. This makes up our lifestyle, our very own.
- Saying no. I am becoming more and more ok with saying no. It’s so agonizing to say yes to doing 5000 things you DON’T want to do. Of course, there are things we should do because it’s the right thing to do, but there must be limits. Otherwise, we have no time to do the things that make us truly happy and peaceful.
I encourage you to take a moment, or an hour, or a day, or however long you need to decide and define what a day in your life looks like. Then think about whether you are happy with it. If not, what could you change? Then do just that, in your own way. With the New Year coming shortly, many of us are already planning our new resolutions (are they similar to last year, and the year before? Most likely). Think about this. Maybe if we start now and call it something different, we could change our behavior for good, not just for a few short weeks or months before we burn out.