The Gift of Being Honest with Yourself
One of the tools I have developed in my own sandwich and that I use with clients is the process of identifying needs and getting them met so that we can realize the maximum amount of energy, clarity, and balance that current life circumstances allow.
While that might seem obvious, it often gets obscured in the demanding and sometimes relentless needs of the sandwiched needs of mothering children or young adults while also dealing with the often progressing needs of aging relatives. All too often, the default becomes to give “more,” and to get less.
There are many tools to use to apply self-care beyond bubble baths and mani/pedis; this is what I work through with clients. I am (once again) in the process of this myself, and I thought it would be useful to take my readers along with me in that process.
Due to the demands of my own sandwiched needs, I’ve worked multiple simultaneous jobs. Using a process of reflection, I took a leap of faith 2 years ago, leaving a job that was soul-sucking. It was a depleting job. It looked great on paper. It was part time, at home, for a major company, and came with benefits. I was even good at it. My schedule for that job was working weekend days. I began dreading Friday nights; the job began to “steal” my Friday evenings. That soon creeped into Fridays in general. Then the feeling of dread and anxiety began to show up on Thursday…you get the idea.
The Gift of Honest Reflection
The thought of quitting – especially without a replacement – was terrifying. Of course the money was a factor. But that was the easily identifiable concern. The less obvious concerns were only available when I took an honest look at the picture:
- I identified as a person who “did whatever it took” to make things work
- I identified as a person who “worked hard”
- I “should” feel grateful – certainly not dread – about that job
- What would “people think” if I left that job without a suitable equivalent replacement?
- Would people think less of me?
- What would people think of my willingness to work hard?
- Would people no longer see me as “willing to do whatever it takes?”
- What would this mean about me?
I had to reach out to select people, even a paid for professional, to work through these issues and make the change. And it wasn’t a “one and done” mental action, even after the resignation. I had to revisit the mental and emotional process several times. This weekend, I was doing some work on my other business, and came across this blog post that not only reveals part of the process but shows the gestation of this business. This was one of several gifts that my “risky” choice gave me.
Can you see the creativity and gifts that are available when we make space for them?
I am working on a resource to support you in a similar process, to take an honest and deep look at the issues behind the choices you make. I’ll have that workbook available soon – for free! Stay tuned. In the meantime, if you’d like to work with me to find the gifts available through an honest look at where your mental energy is going, contact me.