It’s so easy to get caught up in everything that needs to be done. As women, we have a lot on our plate. Men do too but they have a unique ability to be single focused and stay on task with magic blinders on that allow them to only see what’s in front of them and discard all other information coming at them.
Women see everything, all the time. The cabinet door that is slightly ajar that you can see out of the corner of your eye is distracting. The laundry, permission slip for Johnny that needs to be filled out, the plans for dinner and what needs to be picked up at the store, etc… these are all coming at us in a constant stream of thought all day long. And all of these things carry the same weight… there is very little prioritization being given to all of these things that need to be done in our mind. This may be stronger for some women more than others but speaking from personal experience…. this kind of stuff can take me down.
So, what do we do? I think the normal response is to be overwhelmed by it all and slowly let ourselves get depleted. If we set out to be really conscious of what we need to fill back up, I think we can handle the awareness of everything in our midst much better.
We all have our ‘must do’ list. Everyday we need to get kids to school, write a report, do the dishes, call the bank, brush our teeth. This must do list is our going through life list. It doesn’t have to be. We can find joy and happiness in all those things that we must do by just merely accepting that they are a part of our life…. the dishes will always need to be done.
We all are unique and there are certain things that just fill us up, that make our lives a little brighter, a kick in our step, a smile on our face, a confidence booster. These are often things we wish we did but just don’t seem to have the time for.
What if we did a few of these everyday? What if we made sure these bucket fillers were a part of our day and just as important as brushing our teeth and we would never skip out of doing them? What if we started our day with a few of these activities and sprinkled them in throughout the day?
It’s also important to be aware of the things that take us out… just deplete us in two seconds flat. They can be trivial things like chipped nail polish. They can be bigger things like bad traffic or an argument or coming home from being out of town. Usually these “depleters” take us down because we aren’t full enough. So what makes you full?
This is actually just the surface. There are many more substantial things like building your self worth that will attribute to ‘feeling full’ and having the ability to give more. But for right now, we are talking about what you can do on a daily basis to give your mundane day some life and energy and satisfaction.
How to Start:
Let’s get started on creating a list of things that recharge us and adding it to our every day life. I want you to write down everything that fills you up. What are the little things that would make a difference in taking time for yourself. They don’t have to be things you would do every day. One of mine is a new haircut. I only do that every few months. But I am pretty sure I am not alone in that being a little boost that lasts for quite some time. You can download our Life Enhancing worksheet HERE. Here are a few of mine to give you some ideas:
Time in bed in the morning before I actually get up
Morning hot tea and drinking it sitting in my favorite chair
Paddle Boarding on the bay
Long conversations with a friend
Getting fully dressed with a great outfit and hair and make up done
A walk in my nearby canyon
Cleaning my house
Next, you will want to add the amount of time each one takes. For me, my morning yoga is 15 minutes. For someone else, that might be an hour for the same activity. Getting fully dressed takes an hour of my time. Do you get the idea?
After that, write down how often you would like to fit this activity into your life. My 15 minute yoga would be great if I did it five times a week. Getting fully ready for the day would be life enhancing if I did it five times a week. A new hair cut is every three months. I tend to wait for six months. Guess whose hair drains her for two months because it just isn’t right? So keep in mind what is also draining if you don’t do it.
Now you should have a pretty good list of things that really add value to your every day experience. The trick is adding these to your day without adding more “things to do”. One thing that will help is your attitude. If you view morning yoga as a chore, you will hate it and it will not have the same benefit as if your attitude was defined as how much that activity offers you.
Another good one for me is cleaning my house. Sometimes I dread this but I know what a clean house offers me. And surprisingly, it offers different things if I have it cleaned for me or if I do it. If I do it, I get a sense of competence, love for my surroundings, and joy in working hard and having something beautiful to show for it. If it is cleaned for me, I get joy, serenity, and a more relaxed state of being.
Ok, you may or may not have seen our article on Creating a Positive Work Day. There is a download there and it is your daily to do list. There is a spot on that download PDF that you can add your life enhancing activities you want to do that day. You probably can’t fit your whole list into one day. It isn’t even necessary.
If you see that you have time in your week for one of the activities that takes a long time, schedule it in. If you have daily things, make sure you add in a few. My day starts off great if I have thirty minutes to just lie in bed and slowly wake up. Make it happen. Why? Because it’s important for not only you but for all those who are in your presence on a daily basis.
Enjoy the process. Give yourself a break and know that creating a more conscious day takes time not only in making it happen for one day but making it a part of how you function in your life.