Give Yourself a “Time-Out”
They say that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and while I feel very whimpy in my thinking this morning, I’m quite concerned that these snow days might just hasten my demise. When I have to go and re-read my own blogs to remember how I want to approach the day (and it’s only 7:30am) with my stir-crazy-nine-year-old who is stuck home from school and my husband who is also working from home, you know it’s going to be a long day. Breathe.
So I’ve hidden in my office (on the third floor – it was once the attic in our 1914 home) to write. Thank you, for being my momentary respite from the world! From here, I seem to get a better view of life.
Sometimes the events in our world can be overwhelming. I feel almost embarrassed that I let a little snow day trigger stress, when there are so many bigger things going on that people are dealing with, but there you have it. That’s what’s real. And I think in a weird way, we can brace ourselves for the big stuff, and put on a good show that it’s all good, but sometimes it’s the little things that ignite the less-than-constructive-parts-of-ourselves. And the question isn’t “How do we make the little things go away?” – because that would be sheer fantasy – life is filled with little stressers and annoyances; but rather, “How do we take care of ourselves in the midst of all the little things so we can safeguard the impact we’re having?”
And I think it starts with allowing ourselves to accept the fact that sometimes the little things bug us. We’re human. We get bugged. That’s what’s real. And sometimes when we’re feeling bugged, we’re not so nice, or we stuff it and it comes out sideways. That’s what’s real.
And sometimes, a “time-out” is a good idea for grown-ups too. To give ourselves a moment to step back from the little things that are driving us crazy, so when we step back in, we can do it with grace, and respect, and mindfulness.
So that things like “snow days” don’t send us over the edge.
Because when we show up in the world in a way that…isn’t so nice…our world feels it. And we do too. And while the people around us might understand and forgive, we’re often far less forgiving of ourselves. We carry that “ick” with us.
We carry it into our meetings. Into our conversations. Into everything we say and do.
It’s hard to be our most powerful self in the world if we’re feeling like “ick”.
Feeling bugged? Give yourself a time-out. It can make all the difference in your ability to make a difference.