Earlier this year, I said I was going to take Shonda Rhimes lead and make 2016 The Year Of Yes.
I think most of us did. It sounded so great at the time.
My friends and I made a pact that we were going to say ‘Yes” to any and every opportunity that came our way with hopes of challenging ourselves to explore new ventures, leave our comfort zones, and in the process, find our truest self.
But what I learned fairly quickly was that sometimes while saying “yes,” to everything, you put everything and everyone before yourself. And in the process, you may get off track and further away from your end goal.
One day I was sitting with a male friend and we were sharing our dreams with each other, and I told him, this is what I want in my life right now. It was merely an extended vacation where I would travel and get to unplug for a bit to explore who I was at the core. His response to me was, “that’s your ego talking.”
I was taken aback by his response. In a nutshell, he felt my desire to take a small break to regroup and fuel my soul’s desires was selfish. In his mind, I could be using that time to write e-books, create courses and use my journey as a vessel to teach other women how to blog and do business.
And as great as that sounds, and I love that he has that vision for me (because it’s a vision I had for myself), how can I pour into others when I don’t have a full cup right now? We’ve been so conditioned to work, work, work, without taking any breaks. Many of the entrepreneur women I speak to are beyond exhausted but scared to take a break or even carve out a small amount of time for themselves each day for fear that they will lose their audience, lose customers and lose relevance.
In the process, we are losing our minds.
It is the very reason Ariana Huffington is leaving her company The Huffington Post. She’s launching a new brand “Thrive” which focuses on well-being, and increasing productivity without burning out. In her book ‘Thrive,’ she revealed that two years after she launched the Huffington Post website, she fell and cracked her jaw one night from sleep deprivation. It put things in perspective for her. She also stressed that we sacrifice our well-being while chasing money, power and success.
“”If this is ‘living’ then what is life? Can the goal of life really be just about money and recognition? It’s easy to miss the real point of our lives even as we’re living them. Until we’re no longer alive”
A CEO at a finance company added: “I don’t want to be someone who, 15 years from now has horrible health problems and who hasn’t created a life that feels really meaningful. to me.”
If it’s one thing I’ve learned during this transitional period is that you have to make sure your cup is full, so you can pour into others.
And that’s not selfish.
How you treat yourself is how you invite the world to treat you.
Taking good care of you, means the people in your life will get the best of you, rather than what’s left of you.
So before you can say “Yes” to everything and everyone else, you have to say “Yes” to you first.
With that in mind, for the next 365 days, instead of the “Year of Yes,” I’m embarking on The Year Of Me. This means making sure I’m always keeping my love cup full by making time to do the things I truly enjoy: travel, events, writing, dancing, loving, enjoying time with friends, and continuing to remind myself every day to press reset as many times as I have to stay happy. (And sane ☺️☺️)
oh and I’ll be documenting this self-care journey!
I want you to Join me!
What do you wish you could do more of? (If you had just a bit more time, more money or less responsibilities?)
Here’s a challenge: Purchase a journal and on the first page answer the question: “What do I want from my life?” Think about what you want your dream life to look like.
For the next 12 months, carve out at least one day a week for self-care. Sundays are my designated self-care day. During that day, spend a few hours (if not the entire day) to do things you enjoy and that leaves you fulfilled. A yoga class. Reading a book in the park. A wine night with your closest friends. Sight-seeing in your city and exploring areas you may have never been before. A road trip. Meditate. Goal setting. Check an item off of your bucket list. Those moments that fill you up will eventually bring you closer to clarity and your dream life.
Whatever it is, do it, enjoy yourself and reflect and journal afterwards.
I did this and realized my goals and dreams were different than what I initially thought. That some how I had gotten side tracked and rerouted in the midst of running on the treadmill of success.
Look at it this way, when we are no longer here, our eulogies won’t be about the money we made, our awards, and job titles, but instead the footprints we left in the hearts of others.