If you could have the life you really want, what would change?
I often fantasize about having something different in my life.
Don’t get me wrong, I have a wonderful life and I AM grateful every day. But if I’m being honest, I will admit that I catch myself looking yearningly at people who appear to have more freedom and flexibility than I have.
You know the ones.
You see them riding their bikes alongside the beach in the middle of the day, checking the surf with that “I’ve got the rest of the day free” look on their face.
Or the ones who boldly display their yoga mat, flung effortlessly over their shoulder, as they saunter into a 2 pm yoga class.
These images trigger thoughts for me that somehow, I’m missing something.
Why do they get to have such freedom, and I don’t?
How on earth have they been able to structure their lives so that this kind of flexibility is possible in the middle of the workday?
Let me state the obvious. I know nothing about the details of these people’s lives, but I imagine that they have it all, and it makes me wonder how I could create the conditions for a little bit more ease and flexibility in my normal workweek.
Intellectually, I know that the rhythm and complexity of my life is a direct result of my choices, but I sometimes forget.
And on those weeks when I am particularly depleted, pulling back-to-back 10 or 12-hour workdays, the site of a person carrying a yoga mat at 2 pm, or riding their bike along the ocean can trigger a cascade of “I’m a victim of my circumstances” feelings for me.
And then I remember…
As adults, we have a lot of choices.
A lot of responsibility? Yes.
A fair bit of complexity? For many of us, yes.
But definitely a lot of choices too.
So today I made a different choice, and it felt SO good!
I had no less to do today than any other day, but on a whim, I stood up from my desk (mid-day), grabbed my yoga mat, and became one of "those people" for a few hours.
It was glorious!
I returned to work feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, and full of creative ideas!
And the only difference was that today, I gave myself permission.
Permission is a beautiful thing!
Maybe you’re not a yoga person.
Maybe you live miles from the ocean and have no interest in checking the waves.
Maybe (and I envy you if this is true), you’ve got this one all figured out, and you have great habits of self-care and a really balanced life. (I hope that IS true for you.)
As for me, I’m still working on it.
I need to do a better job of finding balance in my life on a more regular basis.
It doesn’t have to be a yoga class every day.
It could be a walk around through the forest mid-morning, or a cup of tea WITHOUT DISTRACTION.
It could be a lunch hour in which I don’t check my email, or even 5 - 10 deep breaths to clear my mind.
But I must remember that I’m in charge, and only I can give myself permission to take better care of my energy throughout the day.
Tell me about you.
• What kind of permission can you give yourself today?
• What self-care habits are you already really good at?
Leave me a comment below and let me know.
I’ll read every response- as soon as I get back from checking the waves!