by Nicola O'Hanlon
On days when it’s all too much, remember life is transient and living is all about change. The idea that life is supposed to be steady and happiness is constant is a media-driven concept that serves only to sell products and services. Our natural state as humans is to experience a wide range of feelings. These feelings teach us lessons and help us regulate what is happening around us. Feelings are natural so stop feeling guilt for feeling them.
On days when it’s all too much, taking time out is perfectly acceptable. Feeding into the idea that constant busyness is amicable is also a manipulative construct. While routine can definitely help with productivity when we need to be productive, busyness is not always necessary. Or maybe, if you will allow me to rephrase, the type of busy we engage in doesn’t always have to be mundane. I’m often busy planting flowers or sitting in the garden. I can be busy drinking coffee, reading a book, or all of the above at the same time. The point is, time is precious, and doing what brings you joy and energy is more important than mundane tasks. Being busy your way is the way.
On days when it all gets too much. Nourish yourself. Once upon a time, because of the guilt and confusion of my feelings and my toxic busyness, I would practically starve myself in the belief it was also the righteous thing to do. Thin meant a win. As a result of disordered eating and ridiculous body image expectations, I lacked energy, my skin and hair were dry and dull and every cell of my body was miserable. Thin yes – happy no! I’ve fallen in love with food and nourishing my body with it. I’ve not only learned about the importance of food for my bodily health but also for my mental health. Food has no moral value. The joy that statement brings every time I use it or read it almost brings me to tears. It changed my life.
Sometimes It’s Not Your Fight
On the days when it all gets too much – know you are not alone. We live in a world that is now totally not fit for purpose. Nobody can keep up with the nonsense. Everyone is upset about something and all you have to do these days is open your mouth and someone will be offended. Yes, the walls of prejudice, misogyny, and patriarchy are crumbling, and rightly so. But the fight doesn’t have to be 24/7. Making the right choices for yourself is where change begins. Stepping back and realizing that not every fight is yours takes the pressure off. I’ve been the angry crusader whose aim it was to change the world single handily. The only place it got me was to my sick bed. Now I live peacefully, rejecting all the old constraints in my own life and raising my children with the same values. We create a different world with peace, not by bullying it into submission. Freedom will come.
On the days It’s all too much……
your freedom matters. Breathe deep. Step back. Delegate. Say no. Keep your energy for yourself. Mind your business. Protect your heart. Clear your head. Be good to you.