Life is hard. It just is.
Running a business is exhausting and exhilarating and can, honestly, drain the life right out of you.
So what do you do when you're running on fumes and your soul is tired? When you wake up and you're already dreaming of crawling back in bed that night? When you longingly think of unplugging your computer and silencing your phone and hiding under the covers for 36 hours? When you want to hide but people are depending on you and the To Do list is a mile long?
I've just returned from 2 weeks of conferences and traveling. I went from feeling on top of the world to flat out exhausted. My soul is tired. My brain is tired. And yet, there are one hundred things to do and people who need me and who are asking me questions every minute of the day.
So what now?
It's so simple, and yet, "I surrender" thrown up to the heavens can activate God's presence to show up and take over. Sometimes I walk through my neighborhood and pray, sometimes it's just as I go through my day, and sometimes I lock my door and literally kneel beside my bed. It's an act of surrender and it's more effective than working for 6 hours straight. So why don't I do it more often? Who knows. It's the human condition. But when I do pray, my strength is renewed and my soul feels a little lighter.
I honestly hate to have fun. I know, it's weird and terrible. But it means stopping the hustle and the energy flow. It means letting go and relaxing. And it's hard for me! (I know, I'm strange.) But when I do really, truly, let myself relax and play a game or enjoy my kids, or laugh until I almost pee my pants, or ride a ride at Disney World, something shifts. We are made for play and we were created to rest and NOT work all the time. (Yes, I'm guilty of enjoying Netflix WITH a computer on my lap.) Sometimes walking away from the never-ending projects brings clarity when we return. Fun and laughter are healing for our relationships, marriage, and our kids (or grandkids) love it. Sigh. I need to play more often.
As little children, our parents are supposed to meet our needs when we cry, are hungry, fall down, or are scared. When we are adults, we are responsible for meeting our own needs. If you are hungry, are you giving yourself delicious, nutritious food? If you're cold, are you lighting a fire and wrapping up in a sweater blanket with fuzzy socks? If you're lonely, do you pick up the phone and reach out to a friend? We don't have a parent nurturing us anymore, so it's our responsibility to self-soothe. We have to hear what our body and soul is asking for and NOT ignore it. Don't push through. Take a moment and light a candle, play your favorite music, prepare a simple meal. Yes, other people can take care of us, too, but we can't wait or rely on it. We have to really listen to what we need and either make it happen or ask for it. And the next day you just may wake up refreshed. Renewed. Ready to tackle the world again.
Is your soul tired like mine? Do you need a little break? Maybe schedule a massage or a night out with friends. Maybe stop working early tonight and just take care of YOU.
After all, if we don't take care of YOU, what will happen to your employees and your company? We need you to be okay. We need you to be thriving and happy and alive and excited about what's ahead.
So go ahead. Make some plans. Take care of yourself.
I'm going to take care of myself, too.
Hi, I'm Jen Hickle!