A deep question to ask yourself right now is can you hear your own voice? A year ago I would have said I couldn't. I would have told you I filled my days with SO much work, so much people pleasing and so much busyness that I couldn't even hear my own voice anymore. I was caught between the space of doing so much but craving so little.
I forgot for a bit who I even was. I obsessed over things that I could control because it felt like there were so many things that I couldn't. I forgot why I loved my life sometimes, I took things for granted because I was "busy" and I just didn't have the time to enjoy them. I wasn't letting moments be and I definitely wasn't feeling them fully! I went from job to job and felt myself become a drain. It was like all the creativity, passion, and joy was sucked right out of me. I was always waiting for someone to tell me I was good enough instead of knowing I already was.
The truth is, I couldn't hear my own voice anymore. The world will tell you to do more, hustle non-stop, and fill your calendar to the brim. But my voice was trying to tell me to slow down, practice simple, basic self-care, and just say no to things that no longer served me. I wasn't accepting emotions as they were and I was burying them deep down inside of me. They would come out in all the wrong ways and I know now it was because they were begging to escape.
I came to this amazing realization that my own actions could change my identity. I needed to rest in the fact that small steps could lead to some big changes in my life. I checked in with myself and observed that what I was doing was no longer working for me or my state of mind. It was time to REST both emotionally and physically.
As a busy body, this wasn't as easy as it sounds. For the whole summer, I had no clue what was to come or if it would even work out. Month by month I peeled back the layers of myself and simply accepted the emotions that came along with them. It was as simple as sitting in the sun for 10 minutes a day without my phone, meeting some friends at the dog park once a week, and sitting reading books from front to back. I did the things I had always dreamt of doing but didn't have the energy to ever do in a weekend! (Whoever decided 2 days is enough time to get anything done is just crazy, haha!) I just couldn't experience real rest in those days- I needed more time.
In my time of rest, I forgave myself fully and those around me. The most freeing part of it all was letting go of my old identity. By being super honest with myself I was able to unlock the inner parts of me that needed healing. It was like a magic key that I had been looking for forever!
I practiced letting go of perfectionism and accepted messy. I started to enjoy the messy parts of life because my new mindset had room for them!
I fell even more in love with my husband. When I had room in my life for my own voice and thoughts I was able to give my spouse my best self- not my leftovers from a crappy day. New compassion for him was developed and to have him as my support system meant more then I could ever put into words. He noticed the positive changes within me and reminded me daily that this lifestyle change was exactly what I should be doing. To hear that from someone you love can really spark magic within you. (I love you, honey!)
Now, I know there will be years of working your butt off and I'm not saying to give up on any of those goals you have set for yourself. I'm only asking you to observe if it is no longer working for you. To check in with yourself from time to time and ensure that you can still hear your own voice. To make up your mind to accept emotions. Know that you are enough instead of waiting for someone to tell you. Let go of your old identity and become that person you've always dreamt of being. Know when to rest. Let moments be and feel them. Make time to date your spouse. Start saying no to things!
If you're looking for some action steps, here is an exercise to try. Make two lists on a piece of paper one being "what's working" and one being "what's not working." Jot down what instantly comes to mind under each list and reflect from it. I would circle something from the "what's not working" list and set up an action plan to get it over to the "working" list. I am shocked by how different my list is from a year ago!
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post friend, I am forever grateful for this outlet here and writing has always been such an amazing way for me to heal and grow.