Life lately has been a balancing act, a constant grind, and at times an overwhelming pursuit of magically jamming 36 hours of work into 24, with no consideration for how. Like anyone else, when I can’t fit work between 8a-8p, the day (‘graciously’) extends itself to fit the need; and all the ‘for me’ things on my docket become expendable suggestions rather than the priorities they should be.
I have clients who have this issue constantly, because, well we’re all human beings, and my rational informed answer – to them – is that they need to make themselves a priority; you’ve got to put your oxygen mask on first if you want to be of any use to anyone else. It’s the good old ‘do as I say, not as I do’ cliche, as I wonder if maybe I left my oxygen mask in my other bag or inadvertently gave it away in a box of old forgotten things. During really busy weeks I will frequently basque in the irony that I own three fitness businesses and I can’t seem to get into a class to save my own life. These are the weeks when I confuse ‘fitness’ with ‘health’ and understanding what I really need to be able to sustain a pace anywhere close to what it’s been lately.
The reality is, that sometimes you just need to give yourself a damn break; whether it’s a real unplug and go off-the-grid type break, or just the grace to be imperfectly human and an actual better, truer, version of yourself — or maybe both.
So here are the things that I’ve really learned, and am learning, about life and myself as I chew through the ‘too much’ that I bit off in 2016; and while I’m working on getting that balance, or ‘blend,’ back in the corner of my most productive, healthy & happy self, since lets be honest, those bites have never been, and are not likely to ever get much smaller with what I’ve got on the docket.
- Fitness is everything, but it’s not the only thing. I obviously believe strongly in fitness as a mechanism for overall health and wellness, because it is, but that doesn’t mean that 365 days a year of it is ‘healthier’ than a schedule that has balance and recovery — because it’s not.
- Take a break. Whether you plot out two days a week that you go to yoga or stretch class rather than doing something higher intensity, or you literally cut-and-go on vacation – give yourself that break from the grind once in a while, and love every second of it. Including the food that makes you say YUM.
- Do one thing a day that brings you happiness, for the sole reason that it makes you happy. While I sometimes will go through a full day without a spare second to myself the one thing that I do every.single.day., unless something is gravely wrong, is have my coffee. It brings me joy, [relative] patience, comfort, drive, focus….and any of the caffeine generated superpowers required to not lose my shit on the days of constant demands and not-so-emergencies that pile up higher than my most lofty ambitions. Pretty much coffee saves lives, but more importantly, it makes me happy and that in and of itself makes my life possible.
- Cut out the crap: the food, the jobs, the drama and the people that not only bring you down, but actually stunt your ability to do and thrive. On the food front, rid yourself of the chemicals, but not the joy of eating. Quit any jobs that you hate; not with abandon, but with the intentional process of setting yourself up to have a development path, to achieve something you’re proud of — because if you’re not motivated to do the work every day, you’re not the right person for the job. When it comes to drama and the people that create it, forget them. They will always create it and they’ve got no value in your story; don’t waste a pretty little second on it.
- Know where you are going: life can certainly be an inexact science, but you will never regret working (and I mean REALLY working) towards achieving something. If that process lands you somewhere a little different, well, that’s freaking awesome, but never stop learning, never stop developing, and never ever stop building for the future. If you earn it, you will always deserve it.
And on that note, it’s back on the grind tomorrow, but I’ll be reminiscing about vacation all over the internet for the days to come.