#4. Quiet time. We are soooo in.
you prioritize joy in your life?
I am an
introvert at heart and need a lot of quiet time to be in my element. It helps
me reflect and connect to what I truly need.
it's meditation, other times it is a peaceful 10 minute walk between meetings
at work or in the evening while my husband gets my son ready for bed.
relaxing yoga class can also help, and I am intentional about blocking my
calendar at work for quiet chunks of time when I can think in silence.
I can't tell you about the sources of joy in my life without mentioning my
husband. He truly fills my bucket.
dinner together most nights and we make it a point to share special times
together, including lunches, hikes, journaling, fulfilling conversations, and
simply being together to experience the big and small parts of life as a team.
something about tall mountains, fresh air, and the smell of redwood trees that
really grounds me. Perhaps it's a reminder of how vast and majestic nature is. It
puts my presence and my life in perspective.
We try to
camp a few times a year and hike a few times a month. But, sometimes all I
really need is to walk in the park for 5 minutes after waking up to hear the
birds chirping or to pause for a minute and watch the sunset on my way back
from work to remind myself I am not that
I love to
read and am so grateful to have access to the public library.
time to read during car rides and on most nights for a few minutes before bed. My
son doesn't like me reading around him as he wants me to read his books to him
at that time, so bed time reading together can be a challenge! ?
don't have time in my schedule to sit down and read, I also love audio books
and a few minutes every day add up fast!
incredibly blessed to have amazing friends and family with whom I share such
simple text message or phone call will make my day, but I also make it a point
to schedule time on my calendar with them.
It may be
a 6am Sunday hike, a spa date two months out, a weeknight dinner, lunch at
work, a quick phone call on my commute, or having my favorite friends and their
families over for a Friday night dinner. I also love scheduling time in the
park or the zoo with my friends who have kids.
this doesn't happen every day, it means I get to catch up and connect with my
favorite people every week if I plan well in advance.
dedicate long chunks of time to writing and my blog posts are often written in
chunks of 15-20 minutes.
remember once sitting in the car writing, waiting for my husband to finish a
bike race so I could cheer him on… my little one was napping in the car, which
makes things so much simpler sometimes!
notes help and I try to carry a journal in my bag (of course, a phone works,
experience, sometimes scheduling time for a personal passion, such as writing,
means turning down social plans on Friday night in order to wake up early on
Saturday to make time for it!
be so overwhelmed—you have so much on your plate. How do you find time to do
anything besides work, house, and little ones? I bet you have no leisure time.
How do you find time to read or exercise? Wait, you even get a massage?"
asked this all the time. I have a feeling I'm not alone. Am I right, mama?
long time before I had my own child, I thought my life would be like
this—chronically overwhelmed, sleep deprived, and exhausted with no time to
call my own or do anything outside of work and family.
there are days when I can barely get through work. We order unhealthy take-out,
I only get a few thousand steps on my tracker, I have a few minutes (maybe
grumpy ones) with my husband, and I squeeze in a few exhausted minutes with my
But, fortunately those days are rare.
Lately, I find most days to be
rich, bright, and joyful. Most days are also exhausting and require a lot of
planning to make sure I can schedule the time I need to keep my days efficient,
I have realized that work, my child, sleep, and the basics (i.e., food and shower) usually fit in, but if I don't schedule other joyful moments, they tend to slip by.
At the risk of falling into the common “My
life is boring, overwhelming, and exhausting" trap, I have learned to proactively schedule
and prioritize joy.
the 8 sources of joy I prioritize to keep my soul nourished.
I may not
be able to exercise for an hour every day, but I can make it to a 1 hour class
once or twice a week (even if it is at 6am) or squeeze in 10 minute Barre3 workouts on
my iPhone, which I loooooove.
impromptu exercise while I am out and about, I may try to do a few push-ups at
the park while my son plays in the sand (although lately he exclaims loudly, “Mama,
no exers!"), a family hike, walking
for 20 minutes to pick up my son from school, or a 10 minute walk in the
stroller after school.
fun trying to squeeze in a few minutes throughout the day. I try to take the
stairs at work, walk between meetings, and when I have a few spare minutes (or
while I am waiting for my hot chocolate), I walk.
Having a Fitbit with
awesome friends to hold me accountable works wonders.
has a huge impact on my own well-being and yet is something I often
Sometimes it's the small things—a thank you note, baked cookies for loved ones, or a box of food for a neighbor—that fill my heart (and hopefully the hearts of others).
we may feel an inner pull to give back even more. Right now, I am feeling
incredibly passionate about the 10K project and a fundraiser that I am organizing.