I am absolutely exhausted today and that’s not a good thing considering the length of my to-do list. Over dinner tonight, I was telling my husband, “You know, my life would have been so much simpler if I hadn’t gotten involved in so many things.“ I thought about this statement and made a mental list of all of the things in which I am involved and how much easier life would be without them.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with athletics, I wouldn’t be texting back and forth with one of my ‘sons’ in Poland right now, baking cookies for another one on Thursday and preparing to give a talk to athletes across several sports a week from Monday.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with public health, I wouldn’t have a PowerPoint presentation due by midnight tonight as part of my research training program.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with a real estate research group, I wouldn’t have a gazillion emails and articles in my inbox waiting to be read and filtered so that I can post new content to the group’s Wiki site.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with triathlon training, my backside wouldn’t be as sore as it is and I wouldn’t be in a rush to get to bed in order to rise early for strength training followed by a 3-mile run.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with administering my deceased cousin’s estate, I wouldn’t be looking at a stack of bills to pay, forms to file and tax documents to complete.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with this blog, I wouldn’t be sitting at my desk right now trying to string 500 words together in a coherent manner.
- If I hadn’t gotten involved with public speaking, I wouldn’t be agonizing over writing the perfect speech for my keynote address this week.
As I look at all of these ‘extras’, I wonder what I could cut out so that life could slow down. Should I let one or two (or more) of these things go so that life can be simple and easy? Why do I always take on so much? The last time I checked, I don’t have super powers. However, if I keep up this routine with my new coaches, I think I might be able to rock that Wonder Woman outfit and give Lynda Carter a run for her money! So what is it that makes me (and a lot of other women) think that we are superhuman? What is it that prevents us from saying no every now and then? I have to admit that I’m getting a little better. I haven’t yet learned to say “No“, but I have learned to say “Not right now“. That’s progress, right? I think it boils down to these identity issues that I have been grappling with lately. Before you can really be successful (however YOU define it), you have to figure out a few things. Who are you? What are you good at? What do you like? What matters most to you? The answers to all of those questions enable us to prioritize. As my husband so sweetly put it in his post a few days ago, my family comes first. The trouble is, my family grows with every student athlete that I ‘adopt’. So, I put family first, work second and try to squeeze in a little ‘me’ time after that. More simply though, it helps to just take one day at a time. Romeo, my strength trainer, asked me last week, “are you a ‘glass is half full’ or a ‘glass is half empty’ type of person?” I chuckled but had to be honest. I’m half empty right now but desperately trying to move to that place where I view my glass as half full. He gathered that and I think he only asked the question to force me to ‘fess up’ to this weakness.
So, who AM I? I’m a lot of things. I’m a wife, a mom, a daughter, a sister and a friend. I’m a teacher, a mentor, a blogger an advocate, a cheerleader and an athlete. I am all of these things because I am strong and determined and willing to work hard for the things that I want and the things that my family needs. Sure, these are lots of hats to wear and the juggling makes me very tired. However, when I take the ‘glass is half full’ perspective, the rewards are obvious. Just look at how much richer my life is because of all of these ‘extras’.
- Because I got involved with athletics, I have had the great pleasure of getting to know some outstanding young people who happen to be amazing athletes.
- Because I got involved with public health, I am able to view the world in a whole new way and interact with an entirely new group of people with similar interests.
- Because I got involved with a real estate research group, my academic career has flourished and I have created friendships and partnerships that I know will last a lifetime.
- Because I got involved with triathlon training, I feel REALLY good about myself (sore muscles and all) and have a little extra confidence.
- Because I got involved with administering my deceased cousin’s estate, I know I eased the burdens of his parents (my aunt and uncle) and knowing that I could do that makes me feel better.
- Because I got involved with this blog, I have made friends that I never would have made otherwise including a new friend that I can’t wait to finally meet over lunch tomorrow!
- Because I got involved with public speaking, I have the great privilege of addressing a group of women at a special conference on my university’s campus this week.
Yep, I like this ‘half full’ stuff. It certainly makes me feel much better. Maybe I have a little bit of Wonder Woman in me after all. Yeah, I know I could rock that outfit!
P.S. I apologize for straying a bit off topic today. My mind keeps drifting back to that Work-Life Balance talk that I’m giving this week. If you want to learn more about it (AND COME AND CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF), watch this video for more details.