The other day, after looking at my calendar and seeing how jam packed the upcoming week, month, year was, I started to feel panicky. The days are full. Completely full. They are the kind of days where I wonder how it’s all going to get done. They are the kind of days where I know it can’t all possibly get done. They are filled with to-dos, check lists, calls, and emails, writing deadlines, and work, work, and more work. They are the days where I move from one task to another – mindful of getting each one finished but not particularly mindful of the bigger picture and how I fit into it and how this is all part of my purpose. I didn’t see much downtime on the schedule or much self care or much space for being. And I could feel my chest begin to tighten.
Sometimes, in these moments of overwhelm, I need to move away from it before I completely go into hysterics. I can feel my soul crying out that it needs me to slow down, and so I either lie down and pull the covers up or go to the couch, wrap myself in a blanket, and turn on the TV – which is what I did on this particular day.
Oprah was on, and she mentioned that years ago she was telling Jerry Seinfeld that she was really tired, that she wasn’t looking forward to going back to her show (which at that point still had several years left to be on the air). He told her to stop whining and realize that she had the power to design her own life. Because of that conversation, she made the decision to end her show and to create space in her life to do the things that she wanted to do – the things that fed her soul.
A light bulb went on in my head, and I realized that this was the exact message that I needed to hear right then. I, too, have the power to design my life. We all do. If there is something that I don’t like about it, I can change it. Maybe not immediately, but I can begin taking steps to remedy whatever is hurting my soul.
For me, not having enough time to myself – time to go within, write, reflect, and BE – was weighing heavy on my heart and making me not super excited about my life in general. When I looked at the schedule, I was missing from it. And I knew that this was something that I had the power to change.
I create my schedule. And so if I’m not on it, I can change that. I can move appointments around or shift how I run my business in order to make sure that my own needs are met. If I look at something and feel that it no longer feeds my soul, I can take it out of the schedule or at least make plans to eliminate it in the near future.
This is something that I knew, but I hadn’t taken action on. And sometimes, all it takes is hearing it from a loving messenger (for me, in the form of Oprah) to wake us up and help us to take action.
I hope that I can serve as a loving messenger for you right now.
Is there any part of your life that you aren’t happy about – that you would like to change? Would you be willing to believe that you have the power to design your own life – that you can start right now to begin making changes to create whatever kind of life you want?
You can start slowly – begin with awareness. Start by just imagining what your ideal life would look like. And then take baby steps to begin making it your reality.
I’m looking at my schedule in a completely different way now. And I love seeing that I’m back on it – big pockets of downtime where I can have some space and time for myself.
That feels amazing. And I’ll be much more present for others when I’ve honored my own needs in this way.
I hope you’ll take some time to reflect on your own life and see how you would like to design it. It matters because you matter.
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Jodi Chapman is a bestselling author, an award-winning blogger, and a soulful community builder. She lives her life with love and faith in the driver’s seat, and she hopes to leave a trail of inspiration wherever she goes. She believes that we each have the ability to hear our soul’s whisper and create our best lives. She would love to connect with you!