Take the Time…
How many times have you found yourself standing at the kitchen counter inhaling some quick snack (aka dinner!) because you simply didn’t have time to sit down and eat a proper meal? Or sending someone you care about an eCard for their birthday because you just couldn’t take time for a call? Or not able to find an important document because you couldn’t take the time to file it in the right folder?
I’ve done all those things – regrettably multiple times. There just never seems to be enough time, and we seem to be running through life, missing so many things that can bring us joy and inner peace. As I approach my 69th birthday, I am more aware than ever how limited our time truly is. And while I still have a long way to go I am working on ‘investing’ rather than spending my time in some new ways that I’ll share with you, just in case you find yourself in a similar spot.
We live on a farm, and I’ve always used our long driveway for a good power walk, focused on building intensity and a good sweat so I could feel good about the exercise I was getting. Now I walk just a little more slowly, watching for the nests of the adorable killdeer as they lay their eggs among the stones right where I walk. I take a second to laugh at how the mother bird pretends to be injured in order to distract me and ensure I don’t harm her babies. I find myself even talking to her, to reassure her I’m not the enemy.
Several days a week I forego the walk for a yoga session (with my iPad and an online instructor!) and focus more on breathing. I avoided such things for years as I thought I ‘should’ be doing aerobic exercise or weight training every day. How surprised I am to find that not only do I get a good workout, develop strength and flexibility but am able to get through a really intense day in a state of calm.
Naturally I take time to cook because I now understand the importance of home-cooking and eating whole, fresh foods. But instead of attacking cooking with a vengeance as I would have done in years past, I find myself taking the time to notice how new ingredients come together and how textures and flavors can change in a really interesting way, depending on how the food is being prepared. I used to be afraid to deviate from a recipe for fear the whole thing would be ruined. Now I delight in experimentation, knowing that we can still eat whatever results.
These days my business is thriving and I am working as much as I ever have, albeit at home now instead of in a corporate office. Yet I find I have more time than I ever have. It certainly isn’t because there are suddenly more than 24 hours in a day. I think it’s because I’m ‘doing life differently’ now.
I’ve stopped saying to myself, ‘I have to hurry and get that done so I can move on to the next thing I must get done.’ It’s more about just embracing whatever the universe brings my way and feeling confident it will all work out like it’s supposed to. As a matter of fact, as I look back on my life and career, it’s clear now that each thing that came along mattered because the next thing that followed it was actually dependent on the thing before. That includes being fired from a company after 25 years! It had to happen or else I would have missed the glorious things that followed.
So many clients come to me saying, ‘I just don’t have time’ to prepare healthy food. I don’t have time to enjoy my kids and their interests. I don’t have time to exercise, or add a yoga class to my life. In reality, of course, there is always enough time for the things that matter the most, our top priorities. So I guess I’ve changed my priorities a bit. It was time, after all.
I’d love to hear how you set priorities and invest some of your time for the things and people you care about.
As a Holistic Health Coach, Paula Antonini specializes in helping business and professional women step off the diet roller coaster, get their energy back and take charge of their health through 1:1 coaching and small group programs. To learn more and sign up for her newsletter, go to www.simplynutrition.org. For a Complimentary Consultation contact Paula at firstname.lastname@example.org. Her eCookbook, Simply Nutritious, Simply Delicious is now available on the website to support you on your journey toward feeling terrific!