Earlier today I was watching a video from my favorite beauty YouTuber, Emily. She is an ex-news anchor that is now a stay-at-home mom with three kiddos and a booming beauty and life channel. She has most recently had a series of migraines and explains how they were triggered by her need for productivity. She shares how she understood that the things that are not quantifiable still have a lot of importance, and that she can let go of her to-do list to enjoy today’s moments.
Her point of view struck me. I just recently came back to work after an additional five weeks of child bonding time. The time off came as a huge and very sweet surprise that I will always be thankful for. I currently work a full-time job with a few days of the week remote at home. I absolutely love this arrangement. It has allowed me to continue working, which I very much enjoy, while still being close to my baby, with whom I very much love to be.
Because of the leave, lately I have been pondering about the role work has in my life. I have concluded that I want to always work and always be available for my family. I am of the opinion that women should all have something they call their own in order to continue fostering the growth of their individuality. It enriches a woman to work through challenges outside of the home environment. However, Emily’s point added a new layer to my thoughts.
Before last year, I would not have considered myself a “lists person.” Lists seem tedious, restrictive, and too obsessive-compulsive for my taste. Yet, I have moved to be a fan of them. They keep me focused, help me remember what I want to do, and above all, they show me what I have accomplished in the day. Many weekends had turned into Mondays and I could not truly account where my 48 hours off went. Not anymore.
As my only New Year’s goal, I set out to make sure to plan my day. I have not been very consistent about it but I have made an effort to write things down. Some days don’t seem to have very much accomplished besides laundry and/or dinner. I have to say that I want every day to have something valuable for me in it. I have to repeat *for me* because with what I have learned today, I noticed that the reason of completing tasks is for my fulfillment above anyone’s benefit.
Completing items is like a high for me. It shows me that I am fully capable and helps add to my concept of self-worth. I feel as if I am on my way to becoming successful because I am busy with life. In reality, though, “busy” is so overrated. It pulls us away from our circle of loved ones and can mess up our bodies while continuing to demand more. It is true that busyness leads us to get things done, but it is a means to an end and not the end.
When I think of people who have reached the top in their industry, company, department, or even their neighborhood, I wonder what they have done that I am lazily not doing. I am sure that I can truly try to spend my time in more enriching activities, but a full calendar is not success. I heard someone say that both Beyoncé and you only have 24 hours in a day. Money cannot buy more time, but being wise about it can make the time more worthwhile.
Sadly, laundry and other chores and tasks will always be there for you, yet time goes and doesn’t come back. There are moments that you can’t put down on a planner and scratch them off, but they are oh so valuable. They don’t seem to add to much or be marketable, but they are our gas, our reason, our end, our everything, and many times we, I, choose my own satisfaction over them, to later crave for the opportunity of having them. See the natural pauses of your current time in life as a blessing.
I still stand by my decision of being a working mommy and will encourage others to take some time to build on themselves. I can bet you that I will continue to clear my life so less chores cloud it and I will value more the days that I invest in others and myself as the ones that help build me up and make me better. The little moments or the long hours that ask for my attention will gladly have it.