Man, these past couple of weeks have been hard. As I sit here writing this, a few things are coming to mind that I think are more pressing to talk about than my original ideas of autumn bucket lists and holiday planning. I am realizing that when I don’t prioritize doing the things that make me feel like the real “me”, I am not creative, I get more flustered when real life happens, and I don’t feel as accomplished or fulfilled, even if I’m going through the motions and continuing to check things off my never-ending lists. So, here it goes. What makes us feel like us, and how do we make sure we don’t lose sight of that amidst the other life stuff?
Quiet Time. This morning I was able to get through my morning routine (I’ll probably write about routines another time because my new ones have truly been transformational), get through preschool drop off, and get to the gym, for the first time in two weeks. I didn’t choose to skip my workouts, but I had two sick kids, vehicle maintenance, extra appointments… you get it. “Life stuff” got in the way of my “me stuff”. And these past two weeks have been TOUGH. In fact, this was drafted last week, and I’m just now editing it to send. Whoops! Yep, it’s been a week. But today, it didn’t. And as I was swimming laps (I do my best thinking there), it occurred to me that this ritual of having my quiet time and taking care of myself this way, is one of the very best things I can do to feel like myself. I’m going to make sure I remember that, even when things inevitably get hectic again!
Listen to Yourself. I also find that how I dress plays a huge part in feeling, or not feeling, myself. I have followed minimalist capsule wardrobe folks, fashion experts with seasonal planners, and various social media accounts for inspiration and guidance on how to minimize my clothes and maximize my style. It wasn’t until recently when I realized that I had been influenced by others enough. Anyone else hit that point with influencers? Enough, already! I can think for myself, or at least I used to be able to, right? Yeesh! A big one for me was how I dressed, so I’ll share my thoughts on that, but you can insert anything relevant to you here (home decor, hairstyles, makeup trends, shopping hacks)… ok, so I figured out what colors work best on me (and which ones of those I truly enjoy wearing most), I am now comfortable with which patterns, shapes, and combination of clothing pieces I prefer, and I have found out my favorite way to accessorize. Now I’m putting together outfits that are not only great for my current lifestyle, but I am also much more confident when I’m feeling like myself. It’s so simple, but somehow I had missed that in my pursuits of following what everyone else was doing. I’ve learned, I’ve tried new things, and now I’m simplifying the process of my daily wardrobe selection so much so that I don’t need to spend much more energy on it. It’s so freeing! Turn down the volume on what you’re bringing in. You’ll hear yourself better!
Friend Time. Spending time with people we enjoy and who lift us up plays a huge factor in how we feel about ourselves. I got together with a mama friend for our babies’ birthdays, and this time we both had another baby to bring to the playdate! We sat and chatted, drank coffee, and just relaxed while our littles played (and her new little slept). It was such a sweet reminder that sometimes my “me time” needs to involve my people! We have our next play date on the books for my youngest’s birthday next month. I now know without a doubt that who we spend our time with definitely contributes to whether or not we feel like ourselves, and it’s so incredibly important to be aware of these feelings and plan our time accordingly.
So, what makes me “me”? I’m a planner. I’m an adventurer. I’m a mom. I’m a wife. I’m a talker-outer. I’m a doer. I’m a dreamer. I’m an organizer. I’m a friend. I’m a reader. I’m a homemaker. I’m an errand runner. I’m an appointment setter. I’m a cook. I’m a van driver. I’m a lot of things these days. But I can’t be good at any of them if I lose sight of who I am. I am me, no matter how I spend my day, how I dress, or how much I get done, and I am enough. And so are you! So let’s wear the fun hat (if only just for school drop off), go to the gym (even if it’s just to sit in the massage chair in peace), and schedule mom dates (I mean playdates) with the people we enjoy most. Because honestly, if we’re not being true to ourselves in everything we do, what’s the point?
These are a few of my favorite things…
Fall Hallmark Movies.
Fresh picked apples from our yard.
Olive and June in SC – “A deep bordeaux for a mani with depth and sophistication.” (20% off offer linked)