Here’s the thing. I am a HUGE EXPECTATION HAVER- I’m sure that’s not a real word/term but to me it’s an apt description of how I’ve spent the majority of my days. I build stuff up in my head. I imagine it to be this way or that way. Usually perfect. Usually it’s far from what I imagined, it falls short, my expectations generally are not met.
So I’m currently on “spring break” not the wild crazy beach kind but the kind where I have a week off (and by off I mean from one job of my 9 billion.) Not even close. Rather I’m on the kind where you frantically try to do EVERYTHING you feel like you need to do from now until eternity because you know how undeniably precious and fleeting time is. You know that kind, oh wait that’s just me that feels that way?!!?!
Anyway. It’s Thursday. I’ve had a million expectations and none very few have been met. I think that it’s finally time for me to learn from my own mistakes. Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that lists or plans or hopes or expectations are bad. No, in fact, I think they’re totally awesome-but that brings us back to my first sentence. They are awesome when they serve the right purpose. When the hopes and expectations we have are guideposts, directionals, and suggestions. Not when they become the goals. I think sometimes it’s easy for me as a mom, a business owner, a wife, a daughter and whatever else to think that my worth is measured by the number of things I check off of my to-do list. But I know better than that, deep down, I know way better than that.
The reality is at the end of the day anyone can perform simple tasks. I’ve done NOTHING this break that couldn’t be hired out- come to think of it, I probably should have hired someone to potty train my oldest, that job is for the birds 😉 Actually that’s not 100 % true (not the potty training thing, that’s true, that sucks 100% ) that I’ve done nothing this break that someone else couldn’t.
There are some things that cannot be done by just anyone and can only uniquely be done by me. Those things, however, aren’t normally on my to do list or a part of these expectations that are never met. Those things like laughing at my husbands’ ridiculous jokes, painting with Vincent, and playing peekaboo with John, those things cannot be done in the same way by anyone else. Because at the end of the day what really matters to the people who love me and whom I love, to the people I spend time with, is that I SHOW UP. Like really show up. Not distractedly, thinking about what I should or could be doing, not half-heartedly looking at my phone or my todoist app (which I ADORE.)
I’m not the only one thinking or talking about this idea. There are people all over trying to make us be a less distracted people, like Rachel at Hands Free Mama. I love her whole concept, blog, and her book! This article in Forbes Online talks about unitasking at work. Unitasking is the new multitasking, right when we are all so caught up in getting as many things done as possible that it’s really draining our energy and our spirit, we’ve begun to realize doing one thing really well is much more effective most of the time.
So here’s to spring break. It may not be all drinks with umbrellas for me at this point in my life. But that’s okay, in fact. that’s awesome because- believe it or not -where I am today is where I dreamed of being, maybe a little less peeing in the pants (thank God it’s not me, though) but you get my drift.
Here’s to finding at least one moment today where we can focus on the present. Just what’s right in front of us. Not the lists, not the ” I need to’s” but just the people who are standing right in front of us asking us to show up.
And while we’re it at I’m going to start a 30 day challenge. For 30 days, I’m going to spend 30 minutes a day doing nothing but one thing. It seems little. It seems inconsequential but I’m gonna bet, I notice some things. I’ll update weekly here on the blog. If you’re interested in taking the challenge with me, I’d love to hear how it goes!
Have fun! I know I will.