You know what folks always ask me? You are so busy Kelley. How do you keep it all together? First I have to laugh to myself because (1)While I do alot, I am not busy. I am creating, laying foundations and building community but most of it doesn’t feel like work. I take ALOT of time to be with my boys and family. I take time for myself daily. I will never glorify busy but I only make money when I create or accept opportunities to do so. That might look busy to most. (2) I laugh because I don’t have it or keep it all together always, but there is a system in place to make sure that most of the time I am where I need to be, with child care, with food in my belly and a smile on my face. I figured I would share…
Connect to your why. You know, your motivation. Your big picture goals. Your devotion to something higher than yourself. For me this is creating spaces for healing, growth and freedom. For my boys, and children I don’t even know. Mothers, Fathers, brothers, sisters, He, she and they. I want to have choices about how I spend my time and resources. I want to be able to be with my boys while they are growing and learning. All of that guides what I decide to put my energy in, how I work in the world. There are new ideas, opportunities and connections happening but I (you) cannot do everything and be everywhere. Do what is in alignment with your why. If you cannot figure out what you should be doing come back to your why. If you aren’t sure of your why, be still and figure that out first.
Make yourself a priority. Feed yourself. Move your body mindfully. Connect to practices that support your wellness. REST. Be connected to your breath and body so that in the flow of working, creating and building, you are always making your care a priority instead of an afterthought. We cannot do the things we are called to do or want to do if we are sick, emotionally compromised or otherwise stressed because we are not taking care of ourselves. I kept making the excuse that I did not have time to eat breakfast. When I sat and thought about it more, it really spoke to my own feelings of self worth and priorities. I deserve and need nourishment so I must make a priority of feeding myself. I am better when I do it. I can do my “work” better too!
Learn to say No. And let the “no” be a complete sentence. As I said before, you cannot do everything and be everywhere. There have to be boundaries in our business and relationships. We will have to say no sometimes, without guilt or self judgement. Not everyone will like your no but you deserve agency over your energy and engagement. I say no alot more now that I have children. When we are saying no to one thing, we are essentially saying yes to something else. No, I can’t work then… Yes I can have time for merriment with my family. No I will not engage in destructive behavior… Yes I have time to focus on my goals.
Write it down. This technology done ruined y’all! I used to struggle because I tried to keep my calendar, my husband’s calendar, the boys’ calendars all in my head and my phone. I mean I really struggled. Then I realized that I needed daily visuals of how my time looked. So, I have three calendars. One that goes everywhere with me, one on the wall of my home “office” and the electronic one generated by the online booking software of my salon. My two written calendars hold everything and I spend time with my planner every day just so I can keep my head straight and visualize what I want to see there. Writing it down makes it real for me and keeps my on target when multiple projects are unfolding at once.
Ask for help. This is probably the hardest one for me. I don’t want to be a burden or put folks out, but really emboding this one has changed how I move in the world. Asking for help really comes down to being honest with ourselves. We can not do everything. We cannot know everything. We all need support. Once you can be honest with yourself about that you can step authentically into your interactions. You can help others find the space to do the same. That is how real bonds of community are built. We each show up, in this case asking for help, and we each support each other. We each can move into better and better versions of ourselves.
And even with all that, sometmes things go off the rails. Sometimes I forget and don’t have adequate childcare coverage or food in my belly. I am finishing this blog that I started months ago. Whatevs. Practice and all is coming. I keep at it and try to find ease through it all.