While I was doing life …

I lost 40 years. Don’t ask me where it went or what I was doing … it’s just gone but I know I sang less and worried more.

I forgot to listen to my children and heard only what was in my own head. I stopped dancing and let responsibility weigh me down.

I spent valuable time wishing I could re-do the past and didn’t realize that, during my regret, this moment was now one I had wasted living too.

I became even more black & white and this made me laugh less so I missed seeing what was real around me.

My children grew up while I complained a lot and ignored those “little things” that really do count.

I was too busy to see a friend and I was certainly too busy to stop and eat lunch and tomorrow’s to do list was already being created yesterday.

While I was ‘doing’ life, the world went on without me. At what point would I even recognize this? And what did I miss out on?

Are you too busy doing life to recognize that you are actually living a life – and that your life holds meaning? I was too.

This is the first article in a six article series where I’ll offer you things to think about and perhaps try, to enable you to maximise your life. As you progress through these pages you will be able to reaffirm to yourself why it is so important for you to do so.

As a parent with 4 children, I am amazed how most of my time is spent planning, preparing, organizing and assisting the lives of those around me – ensuring that everything runs smoothly and that everything is balanced, whilst the rest of my time is spent on running of our business. There simply is no ‘me time’ or ‘balance’ in my life and it is the last thing I think about until I become so fed up and so frustrated and even angry that my time is wasted doing inane things like ironing or grocery shopping. Then, it’s all I think about … “I need a life! I want my life back! If only I had time to do what I want to do for a change!” But what I need to realise is that this is my choice.

Our lives do become one of responsibility once we have a family … things just have to get done and children do need you and these are important priorities. However, it doesn’t automatically sign you up for the school of martyrdom either. You don’t have to cease being a thinking, intelligent, talented, special and valuable Being with so much to contribute. So why do so many of us forget this and let go of who we are and allow life to pass us by? How does life become so consuming that we lose our identity and determine that our personal needs just don’t matter? The more we allow ourselves to be ruled by our lives, the more we forget we are having one. All of the things we do are a part of the life we have chosen for ourselves (yes, even the ironing, I know!), the trick is in making them a part of the whole and not the whole picture of our lives!

We are so much more than someone who cooks, cleans, washes dishes, drives people to sporting practice & rehearsals, helps with homework, finds mysteriously missing items and knows where everything is whilst doing three other things at once. These things do not define us – they are just an aspect of the enormous potential within all of us. Only when you give up on yourself do you become just a … (insert mum, dad, housewife, cleaner or whatever term you like). So what are we then? I believe we are the sum expression of what we choose for us … be it just our ‘have to’ life or our deeply felt longings and dreams … or both, happily co-existing alongside each other.

Next, we’ll look at what balance is and why we need it in our life …