It had been planned since February 2018; a 10-day cruise with my family at the end of May to celebrate the end of the school year and the end of 4 AAU seasons (2 different teams for each child). However, as the cruise ended at the beginning of June, I realized I was not as refreshed as I thought I would be. Now mind you, on Day 6 of the cruise, I finally started to feel relaxed, yet mind the word: STARTED!
MORE TIME: By the end of Day 10 during disembarkment (getting off the ship), I realized I wanted more… More alone time, more free-thinking time and more time to totally decompress! More time to think about my business and the direction I truly want to take it to, more time to reflect on the first 6 months of the year, more time to reflect on our current ebbs after so many years of flows… just more time! And more importantly, more time to care for myself! Time to unpack ALL I personally have been through for the past 4 years… just more time!
Ok….. Now you may be saying to yourself, you just spent 10 days on a cruise and you want another vacation? Sounds crazy, right? I’ve heard that before…. You need a vacation from a vacation… and I now understand. Vacations, at times, can be tiring, especially on a cruise ship. So many ports, activities, events, people, places and things to see, you try to fit everything in a short period of time. Add kids on top of that, and as my fellow mothers know, it ALL falls on the Momma. We are the CEOs of our households and on vacation, we become the Orchestrators of F.U.N. - Fun Unlimited NOW!
REALIZATION: So, as I was leaving the ship, I realized I was still depleted. I was not motivated to go back to the office to start the grind I just left. So I made a decision to skip the June newsletter and focused instead on myself; getting my own pitcher and pouring water on my own flower… so to speak. If you don’t water it, who will?
A NEW COMMITMENT: Self - care is crucial! As I get older, I realize the importance of self-care. Growing up, the women in my community had the mindset that everyone ELSE is and should be first. In other words, they were consumed with taking care of others instead of taking care of themselves. They shuddered at the thought of taking one moment for themselves…. Just a minute to think, reflect, breath. I remember asking my mother-in-law the last time she got a pedicure, manicure or massage and her response floored me: She NEVER had one and she didn’t like strangers “touching” her! WOW! Now I know you may be saying, different generation, different mindset, but at what point does that mindset get broken?
I started by shifting my conversation that time for myself is not selfish, it is self-love, self-preservation, self-care.
Here are the five signs I noticed when I knew I needed additional “water”/ REST:
Felt tired all day/every day and had very little patience for even the small things.
Creativity levels were quickly approaching 0 and I started to doubt whether or not I was even a creative person.
Lack of motivation - I no longer felt excited to step into the office and shuddered at the thought of responding to emails, telephone messages and mail.
In conversations with others, my mind would wander to sandy beaches, warm waters and blue skies.
Physically sensations in my neck, shoulders and upper back became unbearable. This was actually the first sign as I tend to carry ALL of my stress in these areas.
Now, let me ask you, do you know when to take time for yourself? Do you listen or even know the signs of depletion within yourself and when to shut down and “water” your own flower?
Take a moment to answer these critical questions as we want to ensure when the next season, Fall, is upon us, we are rejuvenated to grow our businesses, implement overdue change, and thrive as we live out our dreams!
Together, let’s make this OUR summer of self-care!