I get asked quite often, how do you do it all?
I find that in this season of my life, I simply do the very best that I can each and every day.
I’ve always been a type A over-achiever. I put more pressure on myself than my mom, dad, grandparents, teachers or anyone else I ever encountered ever did. I like to be really great at things, not fail and I used to try to be perfect.
I will say I have officially thrown my perfectionist hat out the window. I have my daughter to thank for that. My husband would tell me not to stress over things and to stop beating myself up, but I would roll my eyes and still meticulously plan out certain events, meals, get togethers, and try to create that picture perfect scene that laid out in my head.
This was before Pinterest people!!
I will say that the first time I realized I really did have the power to control my own mental attitude, was walking down the aisle to marry my husband.
The DJ played MY song when my bridesmaids starting walking out. I may have screamed and dropped the F bomb while waiting next to my father and the poor wedding coordinator. They both looked at me like—what are we to do? Stop him? Tell him to re-do? But I simple paused, took a deep breath and put a smile on my face. I knew that if I walked down the aisle with a bitchy look on my face, my fiancé would NEVER marry me. So I took it in stride, realized it was out of my control, and that at the end of the day, no one would know that it was a mess up. In the end, we all walked down to, “Lucky” by Jason Mraz. I can laugh about it now, but really that moment was a huge turning point in my mental thinking.
A few years later, along came our beautiful baby girl. As much as I tried, there was no trying to get her to conform to what I wanted. She slept when she wanted, ate when she wanted and eventually potty trained when she wanted. God used her to really show me that I am not in control and that all of the stress I put on myself to try and control things, was really really bad.
A few more years go by, we add a baby boy. I totally thought I had this mom thing figured out! Turns out, baby boy was a total different experience than baby girl. He had terrible reflux, I had to stop nursing him after 8 weeks and switch him to Nutramigen formula, and I don’t think he fully slept through the night until well after the first year. Funny how things work…
In the last 10 years I have been with my husband, I have learned so much about myself, life, being a wife, and eventually a mother. I fully admit I DO NOT have this whole thing figured out, but I have learned to give myself a lot of grace. I have learned to laugh at myself. I learned to be more open to experiences, situations and let go of the ideas of what I want people to be, and just let them be who they are. Accept them, or don’t. I have begun to embrace the chaos of my messes and though it be tough at times, view the chaos as a blessing. I turn on the jazz music on the surround sound. I tackle my to do list, one thing at a time. I stop to do something for me, to fill my cup. Like blogging; right now there are mountains of laundry to be done, but my fingers needed to feel the keys for a few moments…
My life is filled with oops, and uh-ohs. I just learn to do my best, try very hard to do it with a smile and save the worries and stressors for when I really need to.
My word this year is “Be.” (Yes, I am a huge dork and pick out a word for each year…) It’s a simple word but when I find myself getting out of alignment, uppity, stressed, or freaking out (probably for no reason) I try to quickly check myself and breathe so that I can just be.
…be in the moment
Stress is SO bad for us, and the more we can become aware of our thoughts and shut them down before they take us down the rabbit hole of angst, the better we will be.
My top 5 tips for getting back into alignment
- Let go of expectations and accept where you are.
- Do something that makes you happy, self love.
- Get outside, preferably barefoot (weather permitting)
- Sign off social media for a bit.
- Acknowledge how you feel, but then let it go.
I also truly believe who we spend our time talking to, listening to, reading about, watching, helps us form our thoughts. I am human, I love a good TV drama, but I also love a peaceful and happy life. Just making small changes over time helps our overall mindsets so much!
Is there something you find yourself doing, to just be?