Here’s to New Beginnings
I am going through what has been called one of life’s most stressful experiences — selling and buying a home. For the past couple of months my free time has been expunged on packing, moving things and cleaning. And the past couple of weeks this process has taken up most of my time and mind.
If you have ever bought and/or sold your home you understand how overwhelming the process can be. Especially when it is all written out on a very time consuming to do list! I didn’t realize how much stuff was in our cozy little condo, until the true de-cluttering began, Lol.
This physical preparation has done a number on me and there were days where I really had to push through the cries of my body — my uterus, my ovaries, my back…. Ugh. I stopped only for the start of my period, which of course was very painful due to the pressure I’d put on my body.
So we decided to try and sell last weekend. We are in a time crunch, trying to sell and buy by the end of this month, so we wanted to make sure the price was right to move fast. Needless to say, my stress levels peaked when the condo finally hit the market. Luckily, we got a showing the first day.
When we returned after this showing my husband said, “It doesn’t feel like anyone was here.”
Upon waking the next morning, we found out that he was right. I received a feedback survey from our shoppers who didn’t even come in! They were unhappy with the fact that we live off the freeway. Oh no… not a good message to wake up to. I stressed about the price. Is anyone going to buy our place?
We left for the day to do our own shopping for a new home. We looked at three houses before stepping into one that relayed a simple truth — this is it. Shortly thereafter we received an offer on our condo. Syncronicity? I’d say 🙂
So yes this story ends happily… After months of prep, aches and struggle we sold our condo and put an offer on a house and it was accepted on the same day! Now we are awaiting an inspection tomorrow before truly calling this cute little blue house ours 🙂
Self Care Requirements
As I sit back today, after dealing with all the aftermath associated with the signing of these two contracts, I still feel quite overwhelmed. These feelings got me thinking about a talk I listened to recently by Jennifer Louden — author of The Life Organizer, a book on my to-read list 🙂
In the talk, Jennifer expressed the importance of building self care into our lives, so that we truly enjoy this life. She calls this “minimum requirements for self care” — things that make up the authentic self. She compares them to a thumbprint — an imprinted piece of our souls.
To help figure out minimum requirements for self care, she went through a series of questions. She suggests writing out whatever comes to mind for a minute or two — keeping your pen (or fingers on the keyboard) moving.
Here are the questions:
- Without __________ I lose myself.
- When I feel most connected to my center I am __________.
- When I feel most connected to something larger than myself I am __________.
- I could live without __________ but not for long.
Once you answer the questions, look for patterns in your answers, then make a list of your important findings and put it in a place where you will see it all the time.
These minimums can be broken up by daily, weekly, and monthly requirements. For example, here are some of my minimum requirements:
Daily: at least seven hours of sleep, love and connection, lots of water, green juice, healthy “living” food, reading, mindful/positive living
Weekly: yoga, writing, being out in nature, quiet time to reflect
Monthly: massage, creating something
Finding Balance Within the Storm
When we are exhausted, overwhelmed and not particularly enjoying life, then we should stop and evaluate our lives — are our minimums being met?
I recognize that of late, mine have not been met — nearly none of them, Ugh. I’ve been so focused on achieving this big life goal that my self care has been pushed aside. Jennifer points out that when we are stressed it is harder to find these minimums.
These feelings of exhaustion and being overwhelmed negatively affect the nervous system. Stress is horrible for balance — especially for those of us with endometriosis, who are already hormonally unbalanced.
I think that with any big stressful life event like buying a house or getting married, having a child, or moving to a new place then it is understandable for the busy workings to get in the way. If we fall off track, it is important to stop and reflect to see if are minimums in place. If not, then we need to get back on track.
These minimum requirements help balance things out and put into place our authentic selves.
Jennifer suggests tracking our minimums to make sure that they are being met. Journaling is a good way to do this, or simply taking a moment to “check in”. Scan the body, and acknowledge what is — without judgement.
Jennifer points out that many feel guilty about self care, especially the classic superwomen, or type A personalities like myself, who try and do it all, or for anyone who has to care for another individual in need of a lot of attention.
Without our minimum requirements, however, we are doing our health no good. This is no good for ourselves or our loved ones.
On the Positive Side?
Outside of a few notes in my notebook, this blog is the first time I’ve written out my minimum requirements for self care for this moment in time. (Jennifer explains that these will change as our lives and situations change).
Writing it out has provided a sense of accountability and has made it a visual reminder. Am I taking care of myself? Am I stressed out because I am not taking the time to meet my requirements?
This exercise has granted me a bit of peace and has re-shifted my focus back to what I’ve been missing in my life. I had a glass of green juice and it made me feel wonderful, Lol 🙂
I am working to get back on track so that my minimums can be met. This takes some time management and focus. For life moves fast and often times it is easy to forget about the most important person in our lives — ourselves 🙂
I encourage you to answer the questions above and figure out your minimum requirements, how they make you feel — what makes you whole and balanced?
With much love until next time,