Spring cleaning your life
Welcome to the second post in our series on spring cleaning. Today's focus is spring cleaning your life.
Through my posts, I like to peel back the layers. And sometimes talk about some uncomfortable things that go along with being a mom and a business owner. With just trying to survive everyday life the best way possible. I don't want you to just survive, I want you to thrive. So this month I'm sharing all about spring cleaning.
But I'm not talking about cleaning your floors and wiping down your walls. I'm talking about areas of your life that you need to take a look at. Now that spring is coming, you need to see how you can improve those areas of life. So come along with me. If you didn't read last week's post, go back and do that. Last week, I shared all about spring cleaning your social media.
Spring cleaning your life can be hard
For a lot of you, spring cleaning your life might be hard. Distraction will rear its head. Do you know that distraction is just your brain trying to protect you from pain? This pain can be physical or emotional, or simply feeling very uncomfortable.
You might have noticed that every time you try to do something outside your comfort zone, your brain distracts you. It's just trying to help you not be uncomfortable.
Before you start, you need to put your phone in the other room. Sit down with a journal or a notepad and just give yourself some time to think.
Two questions to ask for spring cleaning your life
I'm going to pose two questions for you today that I want you to think about as you go through this process. This is just the beginning of a little bit deeper investigation that you're going to want to do.
Maybe you don't even know where to start. Or you're feeling simply overwhelmed and that it's just too much. Because I know we all have a lot on our plates.
1. What do you want in your life right now?
The first question I want you to look at is what do you want in your life right now?
There's different ways you can think about this. You can think about this from:
- the different areas of your life, things like your health, your career, or your business.
- or in the realm of parenting, or relationships with your spouse, partner, family and friends
- your spiritual life
Sit down and journal for about 15 minutes on what you want in your life right now? How do you want your life to look like right now? Don't put any restrictions on yourself. Just see what comes up, and what comes out.
Do you want to be happier? Less busy? It might be that you want to physically be somewhere else. Define what that looks like for you.
My dream to live elsewhere as I focus on spring cleaning my life
Let me share what motivated me to finally put our dream of living somewhere else in motion. So on Valentine's day, Jeff flooded our bathroom and it went downstairs into our kitchen. We now have this huge hole in the ceiling in our kitchen.
This started the discussion between Jeff and me about whether we were just going to fix the ceiling. Or were we going to bring somebody in and redo the whole kitchen. What we did was contact a realtor. Because we know we want to sell the house at some point. After talking to a couple of realtors they all said to just fix the ceiling. Since the market is so hot right now, we don't have to do anything to our house.
When they told me how much we could get for our house, I just about fell over. And then we started looking at real estate down in Florida. Because if we sell the house, we can get something Florida. And that would be amazing. So my flooded bathroom turned into, "let's sell the house and move to Florida."
It's tax season. And it's insanely busy. The semester's going on, and I've got so much on my plate. But even with all that, we decided we're going to do this. Because if we don't do this now, when are we going to do this?
Sometimes all it takes if for you to sit there and figure out what you want your life to look like. Jeff and I have been dreaming for a long time about going to Florida. We finally said we're going to do this because that's what we want our life to look like.
Don't put limits on yourself when spring cleaning your life
When you answer these questions, don't put limits on yourself. Don't say, "Oh, that's not possible. That's not going to happen." It might not happen tomorrow, but it's got to be in your playbook.
That's why people have vision boards. And that's why people have five-year or ten-year plans. Because if you do not allow yourself to even consider the possibility, then it’s never going to happen.
So before you get overwhelmed thinking about all the things and all this stuff you've got to do, you need to answer question number two.
2. What do you need to remove from your life to make that happen?
So I want you to look at everything that you wrote down in what you want in your life. Sometimes when you do this exercise, you just think about adding things. And I know for a lot of you, there is no bandwidth to add anything to what you're doing.
You are just running all day doing things. But you've got to take some time to do a little bit of recharge to let your body just calm down a little bit.
When spring cleaning your life you need to look at your schedule
I'm sure when you look at your schedule it's packed. It's packed from the time you wake up until the time you go to sleep. You have to think about what needs to go. I'm going to give you a couple of suggestions on some things that are probably going to need to go.
Things that need to go when spring cleaning your life
- Perfectionism needs to go. The "my house has to be perfect. Dishes have to be done the second that they're dirty. And if I don't do that, I am going to make myself feel terrible." That needs to go.
- The self-shaming needs to go
- When you are so uncomfortable with yourself and what's going on in your life, that you will not allow yourself to relax. That needs to go
- Release being so hard on yourself
- Stop being your own worst critic.
Don't sit there overwhelmed thinking that there aren't enough hours in the day. That there is no way you can get it all done. Instead, think that this is all the time you have today. Look at your schedule and see what you can get done.
Gaining traction is what's going to make a difference when spring cleaning your life
By removing the downtalk and the pressure you put on yourself, a lot of other things are going to be easier. Working more does not necessarily solve the problem. In fact, most times it doesn't. Getting traction in the time that you have to work on things, that's what's going to make a difference.
And so as you look at that list of what you want in your life, I want you to think about what you need to remove. Because very often it's not adding more, but it's taking away. It's taking away the things that aren't serving you well. It's taking away the words that are not serving you well.
When spring cleaning your life think about the identities you've created for yourself
This week I've been giving the ladies in Empower Bookkeeper Network a little bit of a hard time. Because I don't like some of the self name calling that happens. In our house I don't like people calling themselves stupid, dumb or idiot. I don't like people calling themselves a failure because, you know, we all fail at things. I'll repeat that again. We all fail at things.
We've all experienced failure. But that doesn't make you a failure. We have failed at things, but that doesn't make you a failure. There may have been times where , you know you did something that you think is stupid. But that does not make you stupid.
When spring cleaning your life let go of those identities
Those identities that you've created for yourself need to go to because they're not serving you well. If you won't do it for yourself, do it for your children. Because when you walk around the house and you say, "Oh, mommy's not good at math." "Mommy is stupid." "Mommy is a failure." "We don't have any money."
Think about the identities that you're creating in your children. "If mommy's not good at math, then I'm probably not good at math." "Well, if mommy's stupid, then I'm probably stupid too." "Oh, we don't have any money. We're broke people."
When spring cleaning your life remember that words matter
More is caught than taught with kids. Think about what you are putting out there for your kids to catch. Words are important. Words matter. And those words that you're saying to yourself, they matter. So I would love for you to spend some time with this and see how you can reframe:
- what you want in your life
- what you're doing in your life
- the words that you're using in your life.
Every time you see yourself in the mirror, give yourself a high-five
I got this idea from Mel Robbins. Every time you go into the bathroom and you see a mirror high five yourself in the mirror. I know you're going to have fingerprints. It's fine. High five yourself, because it's really hard to criticize yourself when you high-five yourself in the mirror. I've been doing that. People in Bookkeeper Training School are doing that. And it's helped.
You are not your past. You are not your future. You are right now. And all we can do right now is be the best version of us that we can be.
When your spring cleaning your life you have the do things differently
And you know what, I'll tell you. There were times yesterday that I screwed this up. There are times yesterday in my interactions with Jeff or my interactions with Erik, or just my interactions with myself that were not good.
But luckily you have the option to behave differently the next time. Think about how you will respond the next time. Because that's growth. That's change.
Don't let the identity you've created for yourself stay the same
So don't identify. Don't cover yourself in a blanket of being a failure or being stupid or being whatever your thing is, because that does not define who you are. It's a thing that happened.
And that's what I want you to be doing this month. I want you to be thinking about what is not serving you well, and what do you need to bring in.
I'd love to know what you want your life to look like and what you are going to cast aside this spring. Please leave me a comment.
If this post has resonated take a picture and share it on social. And tag me. As women, we are very, very hard on ourselves and women need to hear this message.
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