Now Isn’t The Time To Do More

How are you doing this week?

I know many of you are self-isolating at home, trying to adjust to the changes in your daily routine, work reality, and family life. 

It’s hard keeping up with the challenges and expectations that this new reality brings. Suddenly, there are extra meals to prepare, constant dishes and laundry to do, and work schedules to juggle. There are children to keep active, schoolwork to complete, family members to check in with, and the list goes on.

And yet, I get the feeling that I’m supposed to be doing more. 

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been seeing social media posts that tell me now’s the time to get those extra jobs done that I didn’t have time for before the pandemic. That I should be using this spare time to reorganize my closets, declutter the kids’ rooms, learn a new language, or start a new hobby. 

That was my mindset at the beginning.  

During the first week of self-isolation, I racked up a list of outstanding tasks I’ve been wanting to get done for years but never seemed to have time for.  

I haven’t done any of them. 

At first, I felt like I was failing. Like I wasn’t committed enough, efficient, or well organized. I felt discouraged that I didn’t have concrete examples to point to as proof of my productivity during this unprecedented time at home. 

It dragged me down during an already stressful time.

But then last week, I woke up to the realization that this isn’t the time for me to ramp up and add more to my already overflowing plate. It’s time for me to simplify and slow down. It’s time to let go of things that don’t really matter and hold close the things that do. 

So, I gave myself a break. 

I decided I’m no longer focusing on doing. Instead, I’m focusing on being. 

Being present in the moment.

Being available for my kids. 

Being grateful for my family’s health.

Being self-loving even when I’m not at my best.  

Being calm in the face of chaos. 

That doesn’t mean I won’t try something new or work on overdue projects as time permits. (I have no doubt I’ll be looking for activities to keep myself and the kids engaged in the coming weeks.) What it does mean is that I’ll be giving myself the time and space I need to navigate this new reality without putting additional pressure on myself to do more than I’m capable of. And when I do take on something extra, it will be because I want to. Not because I think I’m supposed to.  

That sounds like a win-win for everyone at my house.

How are you navigating this new reality? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

You’re wonderful.

Mary Lou