Sometimes I meltdown because I'm exhausted, worn out or just totally over whelmed. The feeling that there's not enough time to get everything done or I freak because I don't know when I will ever get it all done. This puts a pressure on me that robs me of the moment that's trying to offer kindness, compassion and support. I deplete my own self because I say yes to my curiosity of life that has me involved in way more than I have room for currently. This pattern doesn't really help keep myself and family healthy and happy.
It's a trait of highly achieving woman and men. The tendency to say yes to your family, yes to your boss, yes to helping out a friend, yes to the next training, yes to life. The desire to be the best while pleasing everyone makes it incredibly difficult to live with less stress. I mean come on, if you are a caring & determined individual that is driven, a lot of us are driven by the need to be needed, wanted & appreciated.
Think about it…who was young and felt appreciated when we were accommodating, polite and putting our own needs last. I even got sent to the principles office one day because I just wanted my own space and didn't feel like playing with everyone at recess. If I did anything differently I was weird or selfish or I was left to feel guilty if I didn't care. Honestly, I've spent a lot of my life demonstrating how much I care. I'd even say I take pride in my achievements of being in a caring, service based industry that is supposed to be selfless.
It's almost like high achieving individuals have to prove to the world how much they care about the world around them constantly seeking everyone's approval. It's uncomfortable just spelling it out & even worse when I acknowledge that this is how I tend to live. (Well, use to live). My body gets tight & my breath gets shallow. I can feel the stress building which just eats away at my ability to manage my time, set boundaries & respect my relationship with myself. It gets in the way of receiving the care people offer towards me.
Personally I'm always going to be a purpose driven participant in life. If you are also driven, even if you're still seeking but you care about the quality of life for yourself and others, I honor you, respect you & salute you! So let's make a commitment together and start by no longer sacrificing ourselves. Because sacrificing isn't serving anyone. Here are a few ways I've started to do this. Sure I still have the occasional meltdown or slip up, but the rhythm of my own life is improving immensely! And it's fun feeling a little more spacious and being able to enjoy the commitments I do make.
Respect the Relationship
Figure out what is most important to you. Success, family, financial stability, integrity, health, accountability…are a few examples from my own life. Then either journal about what these things mean to you, visualize what it looks like, or create a vision board that has images representing these qualities. Don't spend time thinking about how they are going to happen but instead put the energy into how you'll be able to know or feel when they are happening. By getting clear on these areas you'll be able to set boundaries that allow you to respect the relationship you have with these areas of your life. Yes, that means putting a value on the relationship with yourself!
Validate the Relationship
Now that you know what is most important to you and you have a clear picture of what that feels like or looks like moving forward, it's time to exercise that knowledge. This helps to not just set boundaries but provides support when we say no to another commitment. For example if success is important as is family, health and accountability and someone asks you to work with them on a project that has potential to elevate you and others. Great. Except this success requires more effort in that you'll have to organize more childcare, eat poorly because you don't have time to prepare something healthy and create more distance between you and your loved ones or friends. Because you quickly recognize the extensive levels of sacrifice and see how you are seriously compromising what's most important, then you are in a position to quickly recognize that it only creates success in one area while depleting energy in all the other areas that you value. By validating what you respect you're operating from a more authentic place to negotiate without sacrifice.
Receive the Respect
You've gained clarity and are taking steps to live that clarity which I promise brings more ease, fluidity as well as stability. This all results in less stress, less concern in proving yourself outwardly because you are living with more satisfaction both inwardly and outwardly. Now you have to simply allow yourself to just receive. Receiving how more people appreciate you, value you and respect you. Seriously. By deciding to not solve everyone's problems, prioritizing what means the most, you're living with more alignment and honesty. You're living with one of the more powerful qualities of being a highly achieving individual… the ability to receive…fully. People value who you are because it's genuine. The time you spend with anyone you're less scattered and more present. Receiving the success you've cultivated includes actually enjoying it because you no longer are over committed, all over the place or exhausted.
Warning, life gets better because you recognized that it's your choices that are using up all your time. There is more than enough time. Some of the most amazing and successful people I know operate from a clear foundation of respecting, validating & receiving the gifts of who they truly are. You know, you can actually appreciate the little moments of serenity that are constantly showing up for you. What would the world really turn into if highly driven individuals started to demonstrate their ability to respect themselves first? If you're nourished and supported then don't you actually have even more to give?