Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Fighting Back Against the Busy

by Kelly

“Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A couple of weeks ago, my Instagram friend, Aeleen (@prariegirlstudio) shared that, instead of using the dreaded “B” word {busy}, she was instead going to describe her life as “full”.  Which I thought was such a beautiful sentiment and a positive, uplifting spin on these sometimes hectic times in our lives.  And it continues to resonate with me as this is an exceptionally full time of the year for me. 

Between birthdays, Mother’s Day, graduations, weddings…there is a lot going on.  But these are all things that I love…all things that are important to me.  So therefore I make time for them.  But lately my life has been full of a lot of unpleasant things as well.  Sick pets and multiple vet visits, the hot water heater going out and leaking all over the basement, the check engine light blinking for attention in my car…it has been challenging to say the least.

Times like these, it feels like my to-do list just gets longer and longer and my days seem to evaporate.  Pretty soon, frustration and overwhelm set in leaving me feeling frazzled and empty.  Then I become the other dreaded “B” word {the one that rhymes with “witch”}…the worst version of myself.

Last week I decided that I was done feeling like a slave to my to-do list.  I was done feeling like a victim in my own life.  So I took some steps to reclaim my days.  And it started with gratitude.  Because the truth is that most of the fullness I have been experiencing is a testament to all the great blessings in my life – my family, my friends, my home and garden to name a few.  Good things.  A good life.  

With that shift in attitude, I then re-examined my priorities – who and what was most important.  The flowerbeds can wait…the weeds in my yard will be there waiting for me.  Social media? Yeah…that can go too.  And sometimes I have to put my {a}rt on the back-burner to tend to the {A}rt that is my life.  Remembering that times like these are relatively short lived (most of the time) and all my projects will be there waiting for me when life returns to “normal”.

Next I created (or more accurately) re-established boundaries in some key areas of my life.  This is huge for me.  So often when I let things slide, I start feeling angry and resentful at others.   But actually, it’s me who is to blame for not standing up for myself.   This is where I took back control.  This is when I stopped being a victim.

Finally, another step I took to get back on track was to ask for help.  Asking my husband to handle the car situation.  Calling in pizza for dinner.  I know these might sound like small things, but asking for help can be so hard for me sometimes.  

All of these changes have helped my mood tremendously…like Aeleen says, a “pleasant shift in my outlook”.  A feeling I hope maintain as we move into the “full” months of summer.  And seeing as how this is something I continually struggle with, a practice that I can cultivate to be a more permanent part of my life.

Until next time,



Carol said...

Great attitude Kelly! We can all take this lesson away this morning. You are making the most important thing priority, as you should. Like you said, the rest isn't going to disappear and your well-being will flourish. Great choice and great post. ......And have fun at all your events!

AFishGirl said...

The timing of this post could not be better for me. Gratitude. Oh yes. The shift in perspective. The "what are the stressors in life and can they be modified?" Yes, pizza. Delegating. Stepping back from social media. Things we can tweak in accordance with what is going on, especially when a lot of going on. Bravo to you for seeing, for really seeing, and for adjusting accordingly. And thank you for helping me with this today.

Cathy H. said...

I remember those days of juggling work, children, and just life in general. Now, I'm just the opposite, but it leads to the same ending: frustration and irritability. Being home all day has me saying I can do that later. Only later doesn't seem to arrive and I accomplish nothing. Then things begin to pile up leaving me feeling quite grouchy. Even with a lot of time, I need to prioritize and bring some order to my life.

Rhadonda Sedgwick said...

I totally needed to read this today. Totally. Thanks for sharing and baring your soul! I love the change from busy to full. And gratitude is for sure huge. Thank you again.

Anonymous said...

Great post, Kelly! I felt the same way when I was a young mother, but as Cathy H. stated being an empty nester still leads to the frustration of prioritizing our daily schedules of life. I think we can all relate to this post in one way or another, and its just what I needed to hear! I just need to be more grateful for everyday and not be so hard on myself when it doesn't get done! Thanks for sharing, and as always, your photo is gorgeous!

Dotti said...

Marvelous post, Kelly! Some years ago, I realized prioritizing was the key to managing my time but it is much more easily said than done! Using gratitude as a way to reframe the issue is perfect!Gratitude always makes things better.

terriporter said...

OH, YES, I CAN RELATE!!! I know I am like you when it comes to feeling I can do it all and becoming upset when I can't. Ask for help? Not usually, because that would be admitting that I actually CAN'T do it all. But trying to do it all just leads to frustration and I know it keeps me from doing my best at anything when I am trying to do it all. And just because your kids grow up, they still need you and usually all at once! And where do I put myself? At the bottom of the list. I have been feeling this quite a bit lately so your post comes at a perfect time. I will go back and read it again and try to put some of this in place in my own life. Gratitude and fullness rather than busyness and frustration. Sounds like a plan!

kelly said...

thank you all so much for your kind words. it is always a comfort to know that i'm not the only one who experiences times like these. xoxo

Deanna said...

Yes, I have come to a stage in my life that I know I need help. And I try very hard not to let the little things in life get to me, because I know there are so many more issues in life that deserve attention. Believe me I have lists too, new glasses, new brakes for the car, dog needs his rabies shot...one step at a time!

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