In our never-stop-world of bigger, better, faster, more; SIMPLICITY is hard to find, see and enjoy.
I was having a conversation with my friends Sarah and Annalisa today. One where we were trying to find a day for coffee. We are 2 business owners and 1 who sees patients all day every day. It’s the type of girl date where we have to look out a few months to find an open spot that will work. We had to look waaaay out, like when it’s going to be hot and sweaty. Right now there is snow on the ground.
Anyway, I’m sure you can relate. We (female entrepreneurs) are all dreamers and want to do big things in life and make money so we can make more dreams come true or to be recognized and feel accomplished. But at what cost? I’m not even saying that our friendship is the cost because it isn’t. We give each other grace and assume that coffee won’t happen because at this juncture, life is pretty damn full.
The cost IMO, is what will we see at the end of our life? What will our loved ones say about us, their lasting impression? “She was always so stressed trying to make everyone else happy. I wish we had more time together.”? Or “She was a people pleaser, always putting others before herself.” It sounds wonderful and selfless but it’s not healthy.
Do you say YES to things you really don’t want to do but feel you “have” to? Even if it is with a friend you love? I’m here to give you permission to say NO, even to your loved ones. Not that you need my permission but maybe you do need the reminder, maybe you are reading this on a day where you needed to hear it.
BOUNDARIES UP BABE! Give yourself space to decompress. Taking a bath or sleeping in or sitting on your couch and eating ice cream watching Netflix are 100% acceptable reasons to say NO. You can say no just because you aren’t feeling it. LET GO OF OBLIGATION! It’s not your job to make your loved ones happy, that’s their job. YOURS is to make you happy. So, if going to dinner, or coffee or for a walk with someone you love makes YOU happy– DO IT! But if you are doing it because you think you “should” or because you don’t want to upset someone you love then you are hurting your relationship and creating resentment that will eventually wear you out and possibly even put you in an early grave.
That sounded a bit dramatic but keep reading.
You could be thinking that maybe your friend sees you spiraling into a pit of mental agony and they want to get you out of the house so you don’t turn into an unhealthy clump of human. That’s pretty cool of them. And in my opinion, being a lump of unhealthy human is a CHOICE. Yours to make. And not really what this post is about. I just wanted to put this disclaimer in here since I also have people I know who make choices to their detriment in the opposite way. Balance is illusive, I get it. You do you and all that but one of my mottos is PUT YOURSELF FIRST and that starts with your MENTAL HEALTH.
I needed this boundaries reminder as much as anyone today. It has been my practice the past few years to SIMPLIFY my life. I’m not perfect at it yet sometimes I’m a fucking rock star. Each day I get better and better. So much so that I want everyone I love to get better and better. I want you to feel the FREEDOM of LETTING GO of things that don’t elevate you.
Is there anything you can let go of right now? Think of assumed obligations: volunteering at your kids school, signing up to bring treats, signing up to coach, volunteering at church, taking on extra work at your job because you didn’t know how to say no, going to a show with friends because you felt you “should”, signing your kids up for every activity cause that’s the “right thing to do” or because “they love it”. (Ummm, I’m here to tell you, kids need activities but not every fucking one- it’s a good lesson to NOT get to do everything because in life that isn’t how it works- you don’t get everything, ever. And they shouldn’t be taught at a young age to do EVERYTHING or feel obligated like you do – parenting advice- take it or leave it but considering the stress our kids are under and the ways they deal with it, it’s damn good advice).
I’m going to hazard a guess that giving these things up makes you worry that you will be judged. Of course you will. Everyone judges everyone, even you. It’s out of your control. The only thing you can control is you and how you feel about yourself. As my friend Haley Hines would say “Give ‘Em The Bird”. Do it your way for you. Start with NO.
The fuel for today’s post came from my email box. Mel Robbins sent out this and the line “What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it.” really hit home.
Ahh, that feels better. This post was swirling in my head and I wasn’t able to do my focus hours without speaking my mind first. Glad I did it. Now I will be head down, phone off, notifications off and working toward today’s goals. I have 3 hours. It’s going to be an amazing burst of work!