You may have noticed that I normally post on Thursdays. Last week, I didn’t.
That’s because I’ve had the craziest week, possibly in the history of my life. Going from a personal crisis to working 12-hour days at my day job with little to no recovery time to a few smaller logistical crisis moments was, ahem, tough.
So I did what I would want you to do. I honored myself.
I ignored conventional “wisdom” and did not strictly enforce regularity. Instead of forcing myself to sacrifice sleep or the quality of a post that would go up on Link to Yourself, I put myself and you first.
I didn’t pretend that I had it all together. I let myself fall apart. As I’m sitting here now, picking up the pieces, recovering, sleeping and resting, I have time to reflect and energy to write.
So, for you, my dear readers and viewers, here are the key habits that will help you navigate stressful times much better than I did:
1. Be prepared
I come up with ideas for videos and posts all the time, but I usually film/write them right before they go up. I like having this much flexibility as I can change things around in the format of my coffee chats and I don’t have to wait to do it.
But I’ve been feeling less liberated and more restrained by that recently. Recording these videos every week means that every week I have to prepare a topic, come up with some ideas for what to say, find a good, sunny day to record, and take the time to set up my camera and everything else I need to shoot.
That only takes away from my ability to do other things, like work with coaching clients or create helpful products and courses for you (which I’m brimming with ideas for!)
Instead, what I’m going to do is dedicate a whole week to thinking up topics for videos and writing down ideas, and a day recording. Make-up only gets done once (can you tell I’m a sweatpant girl?), and I save a lot of time.
The bonus is that I usually record much better after a practice try or two. So you will hopefully get a better version of me as well
2. If you’re not prepared, don’t sweat it
This week, I got caught red-handed. I didn’t have any time to shoot the video, I was too exhausted to write anything up, and I even forgot my password to my site when I tried to log in and post an old post that had been sleeping in my Drafts.
Yes, I will admit that I got frustrated. I really wanted to be consistent. I wanted to do the right thing for my website, as I’ve been told by so many “experts”. I wanted to “have it all together”.
But then I realized that, no, I don’t have to have it all together. This is a website about authenticity and intuitive living. What kind of a hypocrite am I if I try to teach you to be vulnerable and authentic, and yet I put on a better-than-me mask?
So I didn’t sweat it. Once I realized that my password was probably hidden in a part of my brain I didn’t have enough energy to access (kind of like when your phone battery is too low to take pictures with your camera, y’know?), I let it go, and shook it off.
In fact, I had written a big chunk of this post on Friday. I really wanted to post it then. But my brain ran out of fuel. And it stayed that way for the entire weekend. Once I got tired of re-writing the same sentence five bajillion times, I finally gave up – there was just no way I was going to put out this post and deliver the kind of quality I’m committed to delivering. I needed rest.
The bonus is, I got a wonderful opportunity to put myself out there and pretend to be nothing more than the messy human being that I am – and I know that’s the best way I can honor myself and you, my dear readers.
3. Ask for help
If it hadn’t been for my friends, husband, and family, you would probably have to hoist me up from the inside of a volcano I had thrown myself into. Because, friends, last week shit got really real, really fast. I felt so overwhelmed, not only on a physical, I-have-so-much-to-do-when-am-I-ever-going-to-sleep level, but especially on a spiritual and mental level.
I felt like I had completely lost myself.
So, once again, I did what I would advise any one of my clients to do: ask for help.
And help came. (Oh, how grateful I am for that.)
My husband cleaned, worked, listened, and became a hug bank; my friends listened to me bitch and whine and bitched right along with me; my parents sent me overhyped encouragements, hope, and praise only parents can deliver; and God, well… God was right there by my side every day, listening to my prayers and carrying me in His arms.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t try to do it yourself. That’s an illusion. That’s your ego whispering naughty things in your ear. You can’t do it yourself. The only way growth happens is through love.
Love means loving yourself enough to recognize you need some help. Love also means loving those around you enough to give them a chance to support and love you in return.
4. Take it easy
We’re used to instant gratification. As a result, when we’re sick, once things get a little better we want to be back to 100% – and we want to be there, like, yesterday.
I certainly wanted to. That’s why I wrote a big chunk of this post on Friday. ONE DAY after things got a little better.
Little did I know, my body and soul had other plans.
After a stressful time, don’t expect to jump right back into your day-to-day life and expect yourself to perform at 100%. You won’t. Instead, you will remain at less than 100% for much longer than if you took some additional time to relax and recover.
Kind of like little ol’ me. Who is still not fully recovered. But my creativity is knocking back on my door, asking me to finally publish this.
So take care of yourself right after a stressful time. Cancel any big engagements and instead plan to relax. Eat lots of good healthy food, and do what you need to do in order to find your balance again.
5. Learn the lessons
Life is a journey, and every experience also brings with it a lesson. If we keep our eyes open, we can take the best from everything that happens to us and continue to grow into the person we’re meant to be.
Let me list out a few of the lessons I’ve learned over the past week:
- I identify too much with my actions and opinions (Helloooo, ego! Nice to see you now that I’ve opened my eyes to my own shortcomings again. We’ve got some work to do!)
- I have the most amazing husband, family, and friends I could ever ask for.
- When I get mad at someone else, I’m really mad at myself. Time to check in with my ego.
- I’m incurably klutzy and forgetful. Thankfully, I’m also practical and creative. I also love people and thus wiggle my way into their hearts with some semblance of agility. Thank God for that gift. Otherwise I may have been asking you for spare change at the corner of a lonely street.
- Regarding #4: My husband is, thankfully, very organized and has his head on his shoulders. And, again, thankfully, he’s glad to take the lead. Thank you.
- I’m lucky, lucky, lucky. Life truly brings me exactly the experiences I need. The good, and the bad. I have recently had the profound understanding that everything that has ever happened to me has actually helped me grow. Wow. I am beyond grateful.
- My messy creativity can only take me so far. It’s time to enforce some time management strategies. It’s not that I don’t know what to do, it’s that I’m enjoying messiness too much to get myself organized. But even organization can be good for the soul, when it’s done intuitively.
- I have so much yet to learn about life. And yet, that doesn’t mean that I’m not capable of helping and coaching others. The secret is dropping all expectations, and putting yourself out there even if you don’t feel ready. Because, let’s face it, I will never feel ready. But it’s high time to stop ignoring my gifts and start offering them to the world. (Look out for a coaching page in the near future!)
- I have the most wonderful readers, who actually noticed that I had missed my schedule. Thank you! I love you, every single one of you, and I’m so grateful that you make time for my ramblings and insights in your busy day. Your sweet messages in return endlessly bless mine.
I’m sure I have many more stressful weeks and crisis moments to go through, but I welcome them all as the growth experiences they are meant to be.
How do you survive crazy times?