I chose a chaotic life.
I wake up every weekday at 5:30 a.m. and I just go, go, go until my bedtime at 11 p.m. each night.
I answer to a whole lot of people. I am a mother of three children. I have a full time job. I have a dog, a cat, a boyfriend and a social life. I am a helper and I love it.
Things come up all day long where I have to drop what I’m doing and switch tasks at a moment’s notice. My transitions are hectic.
At times it drives me mad.
I keep my cool by being my own best supporter amidst the craziness.
I do nice little things for myself anytime I have a spare moment.
1.xWhen I’m dead tired at the end of a workday, I come home and put on a favorite record to boost my mood while I cook a healthy dinner and wash the dishes.
I give myself the gift of nourishing food cooked with love and a clean kitchen to wake up the next morning.
2.xI stick to a strict weekly schedule.
I give myself the gift of rhythm.
I make sure to dedicate one weekend day to get ready for the week ahead. I do the laundry, grocery shopping and other errands and chores so I don’t have to do any of this running around while I’m super busy during the week.
3.xDuring the course of my busy day, I use at least 1,000 different objects and tools to complete my tasks.
I give myself the gift of organization.
I have a specific place where everything is stored and I always put things away right after I’m done using them. I keep my environment free of clutter and donate or throw out anything that isn’t lovely and doesn’t serve a purpose.
4.xOn my day off, I give myself the gift of going slow.
I’ll spend time laying down and stretching out on the floor or read a book. Sometimes I just do nothing.
It’s the one day a week, I purposefully don’t rush out the door. I celebrate this relaxed pace by listening to a favorite song as I’m putting on my shoes instead of frantically rushing out the door.
5.xI give myself the gift of incorporating relaxing activities into my daily life.
Since we don’t have a TV, I don’t take time to just sit around. Instead, we have a dog. I take her out for a nice walk five times a day. This boosts my mood and helps me stay fit. (Because I definitely don’t have time to go to the gym). Sometimes on our walk we’ll run into a friend or neighbor and take a little time to visit.
6.xI give myself the gift of a daily meditation practice.
Meditating gives me a chance to connect with my basic goodness, quiet my mind and make friends with my situation. It smooths the edges of my daily challenges.
7.xI give myself the gift of recognizing my limitations.
I am hardworking and capable but that doesn’t mean I have to do everything on my own all the time. Whenever someone offers to help me with a project or chore, I always accept the help. I am not proud, nor am I picky. If someone helps me fold the laundry or do the dishes, it will not necessarily be done the way I would have done it, but that’s okay. I know that there is always more than one right way to do everything.
I even go so far to pay my kids to do chores. I know that they will ask me for money anyway so I might as well get a clean kitchen or a mopped floor in the deal. Plus it’s good life skills training for them.
“Don’t underestimate the power of doing nothing, of just going along, listening to all of the things you can’t hear and not bothering.” ~ Winnie the Pooh
All of these good habits help me to keep my cool when life gets intense. I don’t mind being busy because these tricks afford me little pockets of space for sanity in my hectic life.
Author: Ashleigh Hitchcock
Photo: flickr/Lucy Maude Ellis