Life is busy. We all know that. It doesn’t matter where you are in life and what commitments and responsibilities you have, we fill up our lives with stuff. Lately, as my life seems to almost spiral out of control with deadlines and struggles, I’ve actually taken more time for myself than ever! Maybe it’s counterintuitive, but I’m better for it.
So what have I been doing for myself? Well, I’m listening to books and walking. It started simply. I joined a “Stepbet” Challenge and needed to get my steps in everyday. Four days a week I needed 12k steps and two days a week I needed 14k with only one off day. So I figured if I was going to be outside walking, I might as well listen to a few audible books.
So far I’ve listened to Michelle Obama’s book Becoming, a couple of Brene’ Brown’s books like Braving the Wilderness and Daring Greatly, Rachel Hollis’ book Girl, Stop Apologizing and I’m currently listening to Atomic Habits by James Clear.
Over the weeks, I completed the step challenge and have started a new one. I’ve cried as Michelle talked about her father’s physical struggles with MS. I’ve been challenged to “lean in” and be vulnerable by Brene’. I’ve been motivated by Rachel to not just dream, but actually fight to make my dreams a reality. And currently, I’m being asked to reexamine every seemingly insignificant thing I do in relation to the things I want to do by James.
It’s a little overwhelming. Even for a goal-setter, go-getter like me!
But as my mind races with possibilities, and I dream about the absolute “best me” and how I can get there, I am reminded that my journey is not only mine, but my girls journey as well.
There are so many things I wanted to be as a young girl. So many dreams and opportunities that I wanted, but didn’t see as possible. If I can change anything, I want my girls to know that they can be ANYTHING and DO ANYTHING.
So I dream. And at 44 years old, it’s harder to dream big. The crushing weight of reality does its very best to limit our dreams to what might be possible. But it doesn’t have to be.
Enter the TEN, TEN, ONE
Rachel Hollis in her book Girl, Stop Apologizing talks about dreaming and wishing and how important it is to actually put feet to our dreams if we want them to become a reality.
Hollis asks us to see ourselves as our best self in TEN years. Who is that person? What does that person do? etc..
Then you take that person that is 10 years away and write down TEN dreams that need to come true to make that person a reality.
Finally, chose ONE goal that if completed would help make the person that you want to be in 10 years a reality.
And so I’m pondering and praying. I’m contemplating and considering. I realize that since I have always wanted to be EVERYTHING, I’ve never gone all in on one thing. Creating my mental image of my best self is way harder than I thought it would be. Choosing to limit my focus makes me re-evaluate my options and path.
Who do I REALLY want to be in 10 years?
And so, as I consider this… I’m giving myself the freedom to start from scratch. I don’t really have to limit myself to traditional expectations. I don’t know that my “ideal me” will be any different than I see myself right now, but it’s an interesting thought.
Thankfully Doug is my biggest cheerleader, so I am empowered to meditate on my goals.
And in the meantime, I’m working on small habits that can be layered upon each other for big impact. James Clear’s ideas of “stacking habits” is awesome! I love that I can stack a new needed habit on top of an already ingrained positive practice. For example, my workouts are a habit. I AM an athlete. It’s part of who I am. But my breakfast choices are often really bad. So, I’m choosing to stack a new smoothie habit onto the workout habit. I’ve done this before and it worked, but I got out of the habit as I didn’t place any real significance to the practice. My daily practice of working out will now be followed by making a protein smoothie and making the bed before jumping into the shower. The difference in time is negligible, but by stacking these activities, I’m much more likely to actually create the habit. Pretty cool huh!
So I leave you with this. Change is hard, but being frustrated with your current state and not knowing how to fix/change/improve your situation is worse. Go read a book. Go for a walk. Just DO SOMETHING.