There is something both amazing and scary about taking time away and unplugging from the everyday “normal” of your life. It’s amazing because we all need time away like this. Time to recharge, time to breathe, time to see & hear things that inspire us again. Time to step away from the super microscope that we usually look at our lives through- the one where we put way too much focus on things that are ultimately pretty small in the grander scheme of who we are and who it is that we’re becoming- and start to see the bigger picture again. And that’s where the scary part comes in.
As we’ve been traveling, I’ve had this series of questions that have been swirling in my head. Questions that keep coming up over and over again everywhere I look… in the devotions that I’m reading, in the movies that I’m watching, in my conversations with my business coach (Coach Kim!) I see them everywhere. And I think the scary part about giving yourself room to breathe, is that you might have to actually sit down and answer some of them. To start to make tough, brave choices. To be intentional about where you are spending your time and energy. To let some things go so that you can hold on tighter to the ones that really matter. And to be honest about what’s not working, so that you can get on to what is. If I’m being really honest, I think that’s one of the biggest reasons most of us stay so busy to begin with: if we don’t slow down, we don’t have to deal with life’s questions marks.
Here is the series of questions I’ve been asking myself as we walk down little side streets or linger in little cafes….as I give myself time to breathe. Maybe today would be a really good day for you to slow down and ask yourself some of these same questions too.
*If the only way I could tell what was most important to you is by looking at your calendar, what would it say?
*Are the people that you are giving most of your energy to, the same people who also pour into you or does it only go one way?
*Who are your “people”? Who will show up when they don’t have to, text you just because, pray for you, ask the real life tough questions, be there in ten minutes or less even if “there” is just on Skype, who will support you and cheer for you even when it doesn’t do a thing for them? Who are the people you know you can always call, the ones who will always somehow understand, the ones who don’t ask you to change a thing because they already love you for exactly who you already are? Who are the people who know your deepest fears, your exact coffee order, and what wine to bring depending on how dire the situation? What would happen if you started giving more energy to them?
*What if the opposite of busy, stressed, striving, comparison, competing and entitlement….is gratitude?
*What if you never got around to doing the thing you say you keep meaning to do?
*What if you danced more, smiled more, laughed more, cooked pasta more, and invited more people in?
*What if you sighed less, checked email less, said yes less, and stopped letting other people’s expectations rule your day?
*What do your fears say about your faith?
*What if you put aside just 15 minutes every day to work on the real dream?
*What if you only got to take with you tomorrow, the things that you remembered to say “thank you” for today?
*If your life was writing a story right now, is it one that you would want to read? Is it one that you would be proud of?
Keep asking the tough questions friends. They are the ones that really matter.