I used to pride myself in being busy all the time. I often worked seven days a week and oddly thought the more I worked, the more value I was bringing to my life. I thought if you weren’t someone that was busy then you must just be lazy or have way too much time on your hands.
My days were so packed from morning to night, oftentimes not being able to get everything done that I needed to, so the anxiety and stress was constant. When people would ask me how I was doing I would say “I’m good, I'm busy”, as if it was something to be proud of.
I am a perfectionist, so when I would get praised for my strong work ethic, and my discipline to always get my workouts done no matter what time of the day it was, it just fed into me wanting to do even more. I would take pride in the fact that I didn’t miss my workout that day because I did it at midnight; the only time I had to squeeze it in. Looking back now I’m amazed that I thought this was something to be proud of as I was actually damaging my overall health.
I would get sick all the time! When I did get sick it would drag on forever because I didn’t stop. I would work through my illnesses and I would even still workout thinking I could “sweat it out”. I’m honestly embarrassed to even think that I once thought this way.
I was so busy I had no time for my family, friends and absolutely no time for me. It took a toll on my family and a lot of years for me to realize how unhealthy that way of thinking was.
We only have one shot at this thing called life and I realized my current approach wasn’t going to allow me to live a long and happy one, so a change needed to happen. I began to realize working seven days a week was not healthy for me. I dropped the late night workouts. I slowly started to cut back and make time for myself, family and friends. It wasn’t easy, I was a workaholic for a lot of years and at times I still struggle with it.
I find making those changes has really shifted my outlook on life. I was able to make more time for my family and friends, but even more importantly for myself. I try not to overcommit anymore. I value my time and realize how limited it really is. I choose to live a more overall healthy life by finding that balance. The midnight workouts are a thing of the past.
I take days off to let my body rest. I listen to my body and what it needs. I meditate and journal from time to time with hopes of make it more of a daily practice. I try to do things that bring me more joy than stress in my life. There is no way to alleviate all the stress, but by taking care of yourself you can certainly help manage it better.
I no longer feel like being busy is a badge of honor, I now take pride in the fact that I take care of ME! You have to make time for yourself, it’s so important for your overall health and just being able to be more present in life itself. So now I wear the badge of putting myself first and enjoying life to its fullest.