In the next few weeks, we are going to walk through the acronym STRIDE. It covers the ideas I believe are most important when it comes to how we spend our time. Let’s take a look at Shift Your Thinking.
My youngest takes her socks off and leaves them wherever she happens to be. So there are socks everywhere. My kid’s idea of cleaning up is making a pile of their toys somewhere without actually putting them in their homes (we have this conversation on a regular basis, we’re working on it).
We just moved into a new home. And are likely moving back out shortly because there are so many things wrong with the house that we can’t live here until things are fixed. (a story for another time). So we haven’t unpacked much more than we need. And most of that stuff is sitting on the floor, the kitchen counters, and the couch. Because we haven’t bothered organizing items that are going to back in boxes soon.
It’s overwhelming. It’s draining. And it’s frustrating.
Have you ever looked around your house and seen nothing but piles of things that need to be dealt with?
Maybe it’s looking at all the projects you have for work. You feel like you’re never going to get them completed on time because there are too many and the deadlines are not possible.
Or you’ve looked at your schedule and wondered how so many activities ended up there. How are you going to get your family to all these places during the week and ever eat dinner together again?
Society has us believe that we need to do it all. Take it all on. Say yes to everything. Be busy all the time. Consume. Consume. Consume.
But is that really how you want to be living? Being resentful that you’re working and taking care of the kids and cleaning the house and doing laundry and signing everyone up for activities and planning the next vacation? You are wondering why no one else is helping or participating?
You’re exhausted? And drained? And over it?
There is a better way. And that starts with shifting your thinking.
First, it’s knowing that you don’t need to do it all. That your partner is capable of doing things around the house. And if it doesn’t seem that way, then maybe some counseling is in order. And your kids are capable of participating in household chores.
It’s understanding that you don’t need to be constantly scheduled with activities for you and your family. That even if each of you takes on one activity per season that’s still plenty of practices, games, and places to be.
It’s shifting expectations, not lowering them. Do you need to sweep your kitchen floor every night? Or get to inbox zero every day? What happens if you don’t?
I’ve decided that I’m not organizing a house that is going to be packed up again soon. I’m going to focus on spending time with my kids and on my work. And maybe relaxing when I can. Because although this house has some structural issues, it also has a beautiful backyard. And sitting outside enjoying the quiet of the neighborhood while watching my kids play on the swing set is a beautiful thing. It’s finding a bit of joy in the chaos.
When you start focusing on the right things. What really and truly matters today. You start getting stuff done during the day. You make progress on your projects and your tasks. Because they belong there. They’re what matters to you and your family and your career.
Where can you shift your thinking today?
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