Slow your roll! Advice from the other side

This week has been a funky one; where to be honest everything just feels off in my life. Granted it’s been a good week since the eldest child is home for the summer and when both my babies are home, life is good but even the eldest child commented that things just seem off. Maybe we should just blame Venus!

Seriously though I have been just running and running like a hamster on a wheel and realizing that frankly I am not getting anywhere I want to go with all this damn running. Just to see where I am, I opened up my journal where on December 31, I had attended a meditation session to meditate and let go of 2011 and think about my goals for 2012. Now that we are in June, it’s literally the halfway point of 2012 (where does time go and damn, I am only 6 months away from the big 4-0!) and realized it’s no wonder I am in a bit of a funk. I have been doing a lot of wishing but not nearly as much work on my goals as I need to, if I wish to take them from wishes to goals. But damn it I have been busy! It was in that moment, I heard my grandmother’s voice in my head (no worries, I don’t hear the voices too often J) and how she used to all say “Slow your role” for my readers who aren’t used to southern and or Black expressions, this link will tell ya what that means!

I knew in that moment it was one of those times of advice coming from strange places, in this case, a memory. I do need to slow my roll. So many things, I want and need and frankly I am not getting anywhere because my plate is too full. This year’s work on the outside of the house project has morphed into a whole let’s remodel the whole house plan. Never mind, I have neither the time nor financial resources to do it all, I want it! The truth though is such lofty plans are driving me batty and frankly are setting me up to fail and get pissed at the Spousal Unit since he can’t make it rain with workmen and money to give me what I want.

Professionally I am in a snit too, after three and a half years of sustained growth at my little agency, the honeymoon of being the golden savior is over. Of course I am pissed, or rather I was until I realized, who the hell do I think I am? Superwoman?

Then there is this whole blogging/writing thing, the jealous stink eye has me wanting more than what the universe has prescribed at this time and I am fighting it. Why? Because I am in the monkey see, money do mode which is always a recipe for disaster. Even my desire to attend the BlogHer conference, sure I have most of the cash in hand but the truth is I can’t afford it. Last night I realized I have quietly slipped back into overspend mode and going to this conference on my dime makes no sense, especially now that my trusty old couch has decided to give up the ghost. Going to a pricey conference when your couch is broken down and your nest egg has shrunk is plain fucking irresponsible and I know it. Don’t want to admit, but I know it.

Lest this post sound like all is wrong in my world, nothing could be further from the truth, for all the things that are works in progress, I have had a lot of breakthroughs this year. Just the fact that I am aware of when I need to make course corrections is a sign of how far I have come. I have been doing some amazing housekeeping in my life, and really working to put myself first but as I see time whiz by (again how is it already June) I know that I still have more work to do and by putting  it out here; this is my public declaration of my intentions. So I am going to heed the words of my Granny and slow my roll so that I can focus on what matters most to me.

Change…how to make it happen

I am in a funk, truth is I have been in a funk for a while. I don’t think it’s see a therapist or pop a pill type funk, I have been there too and this doesn’t quite feel like that type of funk. No, in some ways this funk is due to being a victim of my own success professionally.

Two years ago I took the position of chief executive also known as the Executive Director of a very small non-profit that was struggling financially. It was a good program but for years  had individuals who were great at the programming but by their own admission not great with finding the money to keep the doors open. So when I came on board we were in a tenuous position of needing money so that we could get financially stable. Turns out I am actually pretty good at getting money, in fact almost too good.

Anyone who works in the non-profit sector knows that foundations by and large like to fund programs, they also like programs that reach many folks. So I did just that, I restructured our programs so that they reached more folks, I used my writing chops to secure better grant funding and my speaking skills to get individual donors to dig a little deeper to give money. The results are that I now have a salary that is no longer below average for the area and we went from only having one official paid staff member to four and I am wiped out.

See, this job was only supposed to be part-time but to make all this happen, I have given more and more of myself and like the tree in Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree, I have no more to give at least with not seriously jeopardizing my own mental health. One of the reasons I only wanted a part-time job was so that I could devote time to things that nourish my soul. It’s been months since I last went to a yoga class, my nails are in terrible state and I have a unibrow forming because lately there is never enough time to schedule appointments or make commitments to things like self care.

Every morning I wake up visualizing a day where I will do what I need to do to be well and every night I go to bed disgusted with myself that none of those things have happened. Instead I can’t tell you the last time I took care of me and stress has me engaging in behaviors that are frankly no good long term. I think one of the reasons I spend so much time goofing around on sites like Twitter while I am working is because it does bring a little joy in my life. Yet too much time and it takes me away from the things that are really important to me.

Change. I need to make changes. Yet I am stuck, my job is eating me alive and I feel like every day a little piece of me dies off. Change. I need it to happen soon before I blow my stack. Change. I am tired of Mama guilt, tired of feeling like I am not the best mother I can be to my kids because I am too tired to engage in a meaningful way.

Autumn is often a time where I fall into a natural funk that I never seem to break through until January when the days start getting a tad longer and the winter sun shines so bright on the white snow that you can’t help but smile. I need to smile sooner than January, hell I need to smile like yesterday.

So dear readers what do you to make changes in your life when you feel stuck in quicksand yet you know you need changes. Do you take baby steps or do you just wake up one morning, throw the covers off the bed and say fuck it, today I am making a change.