I’m doing it, I’m actually doing it. I’m sitting in a comfy chair in my favorite coffee shop, on a weekday morning. I’m streaming Pandora through my ear buds and I’m sipping coffee and writing. All these things give me LIFE! Why, why has it taken me so long to get here? Sure, I took a day off from the job that pays the bills, but I know it will be worth it.
Wait a minute. Why am I even trying to justify this? It’s my time to take! Oh brother. I just read a startling statistic that said more than 40% of Americans don’t take their paid time off or use their vacation days. Y’all! We need to get it together.
We’re working ourselves to death to make all the money, get all the promotions and pay all the bills but we’re missing out on this teeny little thing called life. Perhaps I’m not speaking to you. Perhaps you’re one of the lucky few whose stars aligned and you’ve made it in a career doing something you love wholeheartedly. I envy you, I truly do.
But for the rest of us, we need to take a minute and really think about how we’re spending our time. We only get this one life. The time is NOW to live more intentionally. Make time for the things you love. If it’s writing in a coffee shop, do it. If it’s taking an impromptu road trip to the mountains with your significant other, do it. If it’s staying in your PJs all day and coloring with your little girl until your hand cramps, do it.
People talk about the importance of self care and I get it, in theory, but I would argue that rather we need to live our everyday lives in a way that is self-caring and that it’s not just a spa day we squeeze in once a month.
So what does that mean?
It means prioritizing. Doing the things you love. For me it means slowing down, cutting back and simplifying in all areas of my life. If I don’t want to spend all my time doing laundry or cleaning up toys, then why in the world do we have SO MANY of both of them? And can we add dishes to that list please? Good gravy the dishes.
It also means removing distractions, um hello email inbox. Look I’m a bargain hunter with the best of them, so I am constantly falling for the “Don’t miss your chance! 60% off today only!” Click-bait is my Achilles heel. I get so distracted by what an incredible deal I’m getting that I don’t even stop to think that I’m buying something I don’t even need so, in fact, I’m not “saving” any money at all! I literally just refreshed my inbox and had 21 new email sales pitches. I can’t survive against those odds. Today I will take a stand and empower myself through the use of the much overlooked “unsubscribe” button… Jesus be a fence!
Here’s what else it means: making time for connection. I heard another scary statistic this week (in more than one place actually, which would suggest that this stuff is pervasive and people are waking up to it) that said America is the richest nation in the world but we’re also the most lonely, most depressed, and most medicated.
If that doesn’t make you clutch your pearls and make you want to befriend every stranger you encounter, I don’t know what will.
If you’re like me, you’ve worried about inviting people in to your home because it isn’t quite Pinterest worthy, or doesn’t boast a seal of Joanna Gaines approval. Newsflash self, nobody cares. People are hungry for connection. And maybe pizza. Invite them over. Whether you host a ladies craft night, a play date for the kiddos, a book club, or a wine and Hallmark movies night, open your home and open yourself to connection. Let’s be real, you’re paying big bucks for all that extra square footage, why not fill it with people instead of stuff.
I could go on and on about what living a life of self-care looks like to me, but what is more important is what it means to you. I hope you’ll spend some time thinking about it. Really thinking about it. Walk through this world with open palms, not closed fists and let it transform you. Here’s to a life well lived!