(Beautiful printable desk calendar from Ashlee Proffitt)
So, we are already 2/3 of the way through March and I would swear to you that we just toasted to the new year YESTERDAY. I’m still thinking up my New Years resolutions for goodness sake! I set out at the beginning of the year with the very best of intentions about intentionality in business and family and how this was going to be my “best year yet” (that phrase applies no pressure whatsoever right!?) and the only problem is that on January 1st REAL LIFE continued.
And not in the clean, scheduled, refreshed, predictable, tied-with-a-bow way that other people seem to be experiencing life (at least if we take Instagram’s word for it) but real life. Messy life. Full, wonderful, crazy, I need to nap (for a week straight) life. The kind of life where 50% of the time the kids are fighting and I’ve taken on more work then I have work days for, and the bathrooms haven’t been cleaned in weeks…okay maybe months (It’s ok you can gag if you need to. It’s gross.) I’m on my phone texting, e-mailing, Instagramming when I should be looking my family in the eyes, blur of multitasking, something is on the schedule most nights kind of life. Life as messy as that run on sentence just was. Anybody with me?
There has been a vacuum in the middle of my master bathroom since Friday. Let me explain. I cleaned out our horrendous master closet and was going to suck up all of the hair on my bathroom floor (Instagram THAT ladies) and I ran out of time that day to finish the job and so now it just sits there. Literally half of the hair on my head (I’m not even kidding you that I have googled “normal amount of hair loss”) and the vacuum. And we step over it. And it stares at me as I put my makeup on in the morning.
On a certain level I am ok with this. My identity is not in how clean my house is or how organized my week is. I don’t need this to be my “best year yet” and actually, I have NO idea what this year will hold and it is only by God’s grace that I will make it through another “awesome”, “awful” or “mediocre” year at all. I am however, more distracted and mentally busy then I set out to be when I color coordinated (ok not really but some of you do. You know who you are.) those new years resolutions. I do think that there is so much value in intentionality and for that reason I think that it is time for a little Spring reset, and I hope that you will join me.
Over the coming weeks I am going to be making a few small changes to life. One at a time. Baby steps. Little wins to reorient the ship that is threatening to keep charging forward whether I am on board or trying to keep my head above water in its wake. I will post one change a week here on the blog so that you can hold me accountable and cheer me on or just to entertain you with how not “insta-perfect” my life is. I hope that these little changes will open up the windows and let the fresh air back in to your life too if you choose to come along with me.
Reset #1: Go back to my set office hours
Starting tomorrow, I will go back to my regular office hours. Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30-3:30pm. Outside of those office hours I will not check or respond to work e-mail. I will not fit in little bits of work while the kids nap or play on the other days. I will instead use that time outside of work the way it was intended – doing something for myself or taking care of my mom/wife/homemaker responsibilities. I LOVE my job and that is why it has started to grow like a vine out of the planter box I created and up the walls of my life. It may not seem like a problem at first until the vines cover and suffocate the house. I feel them creeping up. I sense it when I am trying to listen to my husband tell me about his day and find my mind wandering back to my own endeavors. I feel it when I glance through my e-mail while at the playground with my kids. I don’t want to be that mom. I want to be fully present wherever I am.
I love my business but my business exists to serve my life and not the other way around.
My office looks like this 2% of the time.
My office looks like this 98% of the time.
So there you have it. One of the biggest questions that I hear from stay-at-home moms and small business owners is “How do you balance it all?” The answer to that question is unique to everyone but I would strongly argue that balance cannot happen unless you set specific intentional child-free office hours and stick to them. So for you the first step in this Reset may be to set office hours. You can do it! It is positively freeing!! Work on nailing them down this week and start on Monday if you have to.
You have to CHOOSE to let life and family win out over work. Especially when you love your job. There is no illusive “balance”…only day by day and minute by minute choosing of priorities. And I need to get back to mine…
Follow along on Instagram @shaycochrane and share your Spring Reset with #SpringReset