Our need to be in control, to orchestrate the perfect scenario on every journey of our lives, breeds anxiety in our hearts. – Emily Ley, Grace, Not Perfection
What a way to start a book review, huh?
I suppose in a lot of ways it’s a sort of confession for myself, too. So much of this site and this business are about that very issue. Here’s the thing: I want to help reduce that feeling in your life, in all creative women’s lives. In that sense, this book review is going to be a little different than the previous ones I’ve posted here.
Rather than talking about how to get more done, I want to take some time to talk about how to RELAX, how to let go of some of that pressure we feel to do ALL the things.
My entire motivation is to help you achieve your goals in a way that helps you also enjoy your life. In the mean time, allow me to share some nuggets of wisdom courtesy Emily Ley in Grace, Not Perfection. I hope they will help you lighten the self-imposed load we as women tend to place on ourselves.
When we’re able to let the pieces fall where they will, we free our hands for better purposes.
I won’t even lie. If you guessed I’m a bit of a control freak, you are absolutely right. This is absolutely a lesson that I struggle to put into practice on a regular basis. But the fact of that matter is that no one can do it all. And beyond that, there are more important things you can be doing when you’re up into the wee hours sending emails (like sleeping!). There has to come a time in everyone’s lives when we realize what are limits are and ARE OKAY WITH THAT.
Once we learn to delegate and allow things to work out as they may, we can discover a new kind of freedom to make room for self-care and quality time with family and friends. At the end of the day, those relationships will always matter more than any project. This week, try to think of one thing you can either stop doing or hand off to someone else to do for you.
You don’t need the Pinterest-perfect home; you need a home that works for you and makes you feel alive.
How do you like that? If you’re active on Pinterest, odds are you have several home decor pictures pinned THAT LOOK NOTHING LIKE YOUR HOME. Do you know why that is? Because that albeit gorgeous marble tabletop wouldn’t last ten minutes in a room with my very active young son. And that’s okay. Somewhere along the way, we decided what a “nice” house/party/outfit looks like, and let practicality fall to the wayside. Let’s get back to finding solutions that are yes, beautiful, but that also actually work for us in real life.
In this spirit, one of my favorite new additions to the living room is a big blue bin where I dump all of Miles’s things at the end of the day (shoes, toys, papers…). We then sit down together every weekend and either put things in their place or throw them out. It may not be the most stylish, but it has done wonders for my sanity. What’s one thing you can do to make your living/working space a little more practical?
Less is More
Imagine what life would like if we were truly content with just the objects we own.
Let that sink in. If you were to never acquire a single other thing (other than necessities), would you be okay? It’s a fine line. I firmly believe in dreaming and goal-setting, but I also firmly believe that it should always be balanced by gratitude and contentment.
One great way to train yourself in this way is to have no spending days (or weeks or months, depending on where you’re at). Other than things like food and replacing broken/worn out items, try not to spend any money for a set amount of time. It’s really hard at first, but it’s amazing how quickly your mind will adjust and how soon you’ll realize that you really don’t need that third pair of black shoes or that $5 coffee every day. Is there anything you can immediately stop spending money on in an effort to build contentment in your life?
I am all for getting things done. Heck, that’s why I’m here! But it’s so important to remember that sometimes it’s less about getting things done, and more about enjoying your life. I cannot recommend this book enough, especially for all you working moms out there. If you need a shot of encouragement, pick up a copy on Amazon today!