By: Susan Browning
I’m fighting a current I cannot keep swimming in opposition to. You are too. This push and pull of “I’m busy” living. The constant go. The resistance to give way to those waves. I’m finding it really hard to go against the flow of busy too.
It took me a while but here’s my new life filter: “It won’t all get done anyway, so just do what you can and leave what you can’t”.
And this is my happiest place. I’ve been trying to operate out of this new pace for some time now – it’s liberating. But busy has a habit of creeping back in unsighted until it’s too late… so again I find myself trying to protect what I have learned. And yes, some days are frustrating because the movement is sloth-like and I feel mega unproductive. And yes, some days I do way too much and find myself deadbeat. But each time I see the red flags, I am making the choice (again) I won’t buy into the lie that I have to keep moving in the fast lane to keep up with this world’s ever increasing pace.
Which is how I landed my family and I into a season of pull back, go slow, take stock and repeat – this pace has grown on me. It took a while though. There were lots of teeny tiny steps. Lots of uncomfortable no’s I had to give away to guard my yes. These days I find myself saying “no” far more easily to things I would’ve said “yes” a thousand times to perhaps a few years ago, just so I didn’t miss out on something that ‘could be important/awesome/make me seen/open doors/help me escape my reality etc.’!
There is a new found joy in the missing out (btw I totally like the idea of JOMO instead of FOMO… where I’m meant to be, is where I’ll be.). I’ve redefined what’s most important to me and gone from there. Little step by little step – with many mistakes along the way. My family, and my ‘healthy and whole’ presence is all this season requires of me. In redefining my priorities there’s freedom to determine where, how, what I do with my time, who I sow into, and who invests in us. It’s a learning curve and I still say yes to things I perhaps could’ve said no to; we live, we learn, adjusting and adapting along the way.
Nevertheless, I am “doing” all I need to by keeping these things my number one.
It started with self awareness… owning who I am. Not gonna lie… this one’s not an easy ride… in fact it’s been wildly disconcerting finding out what I love about me whilst simultaneously having to face what I don’t. Copping the reality checks and recognising there has been a void in my heart was just the first step to working on my priorities. Then I realised once I named the feelings and acknowledged I was stuffing down my emotions inside with busy, shame or consuming the emptiness no longer had power on me. I grew more confident. I became bold. I stood my ground.
Acknowledgement is the first pulled thread of the unravelling from all the doing. This void could no longer be filled by shopping, late night binging, time with friends, the get things done lists, the life things, the facade or any amount of TV.
Instead I began to fill this void with love for the person He created me to be. And little by little there was no room for any of that fluff and stuff because I started to fully accept and receive my worth wasn’t in performing. Doing… well, it will keep that void cavernous, hungry, yearning for more… it’s only truly filled when you acknowledge and give it love.
Pour into yourself self love. There’s so much power in acknowledging you’re not okay. The soul becomes satiated because you allowed yourself to be real. You honoured yourself in taking small incremental steps to finding your path again. Over the years I got real lost in the momentum of ‘do’ too… but I have chosen to continue the ongoing transformation, to tap into the roots of my heart, do the hard work. Sit and lean in to what is happening within my body, my heart and my mind. Realising I’d never reach perfection (no matter how hard I tried) and start actually liking myself. Even loving, the masterpiece He called His. My hearts desire to consume is radically less. I still enjoy those things, but they don’t consume me, they aren’t my escape from all the doing. I’m at a threshold of this laid back season – new and unknown.
I’ve come to realise it’s affirming the small steps, I hope you can too. This process of acknowledgement. The becoming aware of self. Seeing, knowing, hearing your soul cry out. Recognising when you’ve pushed your body, your marriage, your heart, your resources, your mind, your family over the edge. It’s only here that you can see that if you had one thing on your list today and didn’t do it, it would be okay! You could be and would be… enough, just as you are… Doing, isn’t always tangible or obvious, but it does catch up on us creating an unquenchable depth within. Until we stop.
So, here’s the deal, here’s the thing you need to hear: You are doing enough. Yep, you actually are. And I know life expects a lot from us… all of it… it’s exhausting. BUT no amount of doing will ever fill that beautiful cavern in your heart. It is time to relish in the moment here and call out your beauty before Him. We need to say yes to the space. We need to say yes to being present. We need to fully engage love. We need to say yes to authenticity. We need the room. We need the pace. We need to know if we show up, we have done enough. And we are fully loved NO. MATTER. WHAT.
So, feel like you aren’t “doing” enough? Or busy has got you stuck in that rut? I just want to remind you today that you are DOING enough. Those incremental steps to draw into His presence, and being a better human is you “doing” life well.
Some days you’ll nail it in multiple areas, and some days you might only nail it for yourself. Or not at all. I think it’s time to look back and take stock. Breathe it in. These precious and fleeting moments. And remind yourself: You’re doing pretty dang awesome. Hang in there, He’s got you and that wonderful life of yours.
Article supplied with thanks to Susan Browning.
About the Author: Susan is a worship leader, vocal coach and mentor encouraging you to be all you can be in fulfilling your purpose.