We live in a time where we have access to limitless information. The things that constantly compete for our attention are limitless as well. The tricky part? We are, in fact, NOT limitless. Our energy has limits, and our time has limits too. We all have 24 hours in a day. That’s it. There are no exceptions – even if you haven’t finished everything on your to-do list. This is perhaps the biggest lie we tell ourselves – that we have more time than we actually do. People talk a lot about time management and productive as a way to create balance in our lives.
Here’s the problem – We have a blind spot when it comes to our own limits. That’s why we often stretch ourselves too thin. It’s not just about setting priorities and creating boundaries.
We first must understand our own personal capacity. Personal capacity is an algorithm of how much energy you have, how much of your 24 hours have you already used and how much stress you’re managing.
How do I know what my capacity is?
Here are some steps to gain a deeper understanding of your own capacity (yes, you need to make some time for this):
- Assess how you have been feeling for the past month. (Here’s a great tool to get you started.)
- Take an inventory of where you have been focusing your energy.
- Determine if the amount of resources allocated to these demands is in alignment with your core values.
With this information you can make adjustments.
My sons are juniors in high school (I know, can you believe it?!) which means that the demands on our resources will be the highest they’ve ever been. Additionally, the stakes seem really high. Knowing my capacity, I need to make adjustments to accommodate the higher stress levels.
When I reflect on my core values, the things at the top of my list are family, service and beauty (which is everywhere, by the way).
With these core values in mind, I have made some important decisions:
- I declared July and August “The Summer of Nothing.” No summer extras like VIP days, house projects or big trips. I knew I needed to rest and fully recharge to prepare for the challenges ahead.
- I made adjustments to my fitness activities. Even though I hate it, I started doing weight training because I wanted to get stronger. It’s a ‘have to’ not a ‘want to.’ Because my stress levels are going up, I’m adding more of what I actually love (dance and yoga).
- I have committed to stop scheduling something in a time slot that I had blocked off for another purpose. (I need to take my own advice and firm up my boundaries!)
The past several months, we’ve been focusing on the foundations of self-awareness and personal growth:
Be in command of yourself, instead of trying to control everything else.
Accept personal responsibility for all your thoughts and actions.
Become clear on your core values and what really matters to you.
Understand your capacity and priorities to determine where to spend you time and energy.
It takes courage to devote time to your own personal development, especially if you’re feeling overwhelmed or guilty.
It is hard to examine these big questions but you don’t have to do it alone.
If you want to begin your journey of personal growth but aren’t sure how, joining my private Facebook group, The Mommy Bond, is a great place to start. It’s a community of women who also want to grow personally. Or schedule a free Clarity Call with me, and we’ll talk about where you are now, where you want to be, and what the first steps of your journey are.