“Self-care is possessing enough self-awareness to invoke repeated patterns of being, that harmoniously correct the behaviours of over-functioning for others while under-functioning for yourself.” – LaShaun Middlebrooks Collier
We all have 24 hours in a day. Are you in control of your own calendar or are others controlling you?
It’s a fact of life that the more successful you become, the busier you are. How many times have you heard the saying ‘if you want something done, give it to a busy person’? And how many times have you looked at someone who you see as successful and asked yourself “how on earth do they manage it all?”. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy, because those who are busy are usually that way for a very good reason; they are great time managers and they know how to prioritise.
They also know that success and busyness can lead to accusations of not being around as much as you used to be.
Let me explain.
Often when the corporate ladder has been climbed to the higher rungs, or an entrepreneurial adventure has really taken off, time is more than ever of the essence. Hours are measured very carefully in terms of key deliverables – and sometimes it means not being as available as you may have been in the past.
There is no denying that this will lead to some difficult conversations with some people who may not understand the path you are on. They may be people who have relied on your counsel and can’t understand why you are no longer ‘on tap’; they may simply be unaware of what you actually do, and how much time it takes up day to day. When having these talks, and perhaps listening to some fairly harsh words, it may be worth considering that there is a world of difference between what others may view as “being unavailable” – and what you see as self-care.
Setting a path to success for yourself and making that path a reality and enjoyable one is commendable. You choose to stay very steady and surround yourself with your personal inner circle of support and a team of like-minded individuals who are in the same business headspace. People who feed your energy, challenge your thinking and drive your dreams.
At the end of the day, you are the one who knows what needs to happen to achieve your goals. Yes, time out is essential, and yes, there are important people in your life who you want to spend time with, give your attention and focus to; and that doesn’t mean you need to be everything to everyone. Make decisions that are right for you – because once you allow others to start making them for you, your path is scattered and not your own. The buck truly does stop with you, and if that means saying ‘no, I don’t have time at the moment’ – and no buts, please! – then so be it.
Focus is not enough. Self-belief is important. And part of self-belief… is taking care of YOU.
Audre Lorde said ‘I have come to believe that caring for myself is not self indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival’.
And you are a survivor.