I found myself feeling like the egg I was frying. Frazzled, exhausted and weepy too.
With my best intentions, I had been saying yes to awesome opportunities that I was thankful for and passionate about. They were authentic, heart-centered yeses, but there were a. lot. of. them. I knew I could do it all if I stretched myself.
I just didn’t know we’d all get sick that week. (Except, of course, my husband who was out of town for the whole week on business – gotta love that timing;)
I was in so deep even asking for help wouldn’t help because I felt too guilty passing our germs!
So I pushed through like we do (every mom has been there, right?)
Even after my husband came home and everyone got healthy, I was still feeling BURNED OUT, snappy, short and exhausted …
Where did my Joy go? What about that spacious sense of Gratitude that makes my heart sing?
Out the window, along with my patience.
I know myself well enough to know that I needed to RECENTER.
I am all about stretching my comfort zone and working hard. But sometimes, enough is enough.
We can’t build others up while breaking ourselves down – at least not in the long run.
So I said uncle.
My husband and I had a team meeting and decided on a few logical nos we could say. We cut back on commitments over the next few weeks to create a little space in our schedule to stop doing and just be ourselves again.
And now I am BACK! Centered again, happy and peaceful, which I’m sure my family is as grateful for as I am. This is how I did it:
The first, most essential thing I had to do was slooooow down.
This meant cutting out non-essential commitments and not feeling guilty about it! Not feeling guilty was the key to this actually working. In this instance it was so clear that I needed a break that I felt okay about it, but sometimes I have to work harder at this.
Then I spent some time doing what I love most.
My dream relaxation weekend included going out to dinner with just my husband, chatting with a dear friend over tea and taking a family bike ride. I also took a fast bike ride on my own down the bike path – with the fall leaves, aaaah! The exercise and beauty put my heart back in the exact. right. place.
Finally, I embraced our chaos wholeheartedly.
There’s no way around it, our lives are still busy. But I love everything we’re doing as a family, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
After a little break, I was able to dive back into my responsibilities with sense of joy and renewed optimism.
Now the real challenge begins!
Life is too short to operate on empty and lose inner peace! As busy moms, we need to protect it with perspective.
This is a constant battle, and I’m not perfect but I have developed habits over the years, which help.
How to make a little break go a long way
1. Pay attention
Perfect little moments are happening all the time. Sweet things the kids say, funny looks the dog gives us, gorgeous leaves on a crisp fall day … it’s easier to be full of joy when we embrace the present moment.
2. Cultivate gratitude
I think this is a choice first, then a feeling. The more we say thank you, the more we feel grateful and notice things to appreciate.
3. Ogle over people
Whether it’s the friend who just got a promotion or the child who scored his first goal, there are amazing people everywhere; It is uplifting to see the best in them.
4. Open up to possibilities
Operate from hope by looking for solutions instead of problems and embracing a broader perspective of what’s important.
5. Understand, forgive, let it go, repeat
Conflict happens. The way we process it impacts our days far more than whatever caused it.
6. Surround yourself with positivity
Our environment either build us up or breaks us down – choose everything wisely! From friendships to music and social media, be picky about the energy you allow into your precious inner circle.
7. Clear your mind
Taking a few moments to process feelings about life can seem impossible in our busy days, but it makes everything else go more smoothly – really.
8. Build faith
When external life gets crazy, prayer and meditation can be powerful game changers, increasing inner peace, meaning and perspective.
9. Take care of yourself!
As hard as it is to prioritize, exercise, nature and nutrition help every aspect of a busy mama’s life.
How do YOU go from stressed to centered? Do you need a break right now? I hope you seek to find some inner peace today.