While AHP is something that I love so much and hold so close to my heart, it also was the thing that I sometimes let get in the way of quality time with those that matter (like my husband for example). I have been throwing myself into my work like a maniac lately…Spending every waking minute thinking about my business, working for my business, dreaming up the next project for my business, all while keeping my running #bosslady to-do list in check and fresh in mind..(Oh and did I mention my day job?).
I have been booked to the brim with sessions, which meant that weekends were dedicated to photos shoots and weekdays were dedicated to editing, blogging, facebooking sneak peeks, instagramming my most recent edit, and emailing clients as soon as their messages hit my inbox. Many nights lately, my husband is peacefully asleep before I finally shut my computer for the night.
Well, this “busy bee” lifestyle brought me to my breaking point last week.
I climbed into bed next to him at a ridiculously late hour…Closed my eyes…. And then it happened…..
The tears started to pour down my face. Partially from exhaustion, but mostly from the fact that I had not been leaving room in my life for time to rest + relax. Nor was I devoting quality time to spend with him.
I lied there in bed… crying… hysterically and yet silently at the same time in hopes of not waking my peacefully sleeping husband that had to wake up at 5 am. The more I tried to stop the tears the more they filled my eyes. I closed my eyes in hopes of drowning out the obvious fact that I had been working too much and the more I closed my eyes, the more the room spun.
It wasn’t pretty friends…. Not pretty at all… Ugly crying to the max. I finally made my way into our living room to wallow in self pity for a few minutes while I continued to cry.
So, here’s the point that hit me like a brick wall that night…
Yes, hustle is necessary in so many things in life, but so is balance…And Balance is a word that I did not have a good grip on my friend… Letting your work take over your life is not healthy. It is easy to get caught up in the to do list of keeping our businesses afloat and climbing the ladder of success. The truth is though, if we aren’t nurturing the relationships we care so much about then we may not have anyone to celebrate with once we get to the top of that ladder!
What does this mean for AHP?? well, it means a few things.
1. All Notifications Are Off
All instagram notifcations, facebook notifications, twitter notifications are off… All of them. And you know what? It has done wonders in keeping me focused and productive! How many likes we have on instagram does not dictate how successful we are, so really there is no reason to need to immediately know when someone likes my posts!
2. Office Hours
I am creating business hours for AHP! Rather than working my day job most of the day only to come home to work until bed and wake up to do it all over again, I will be setting business hours for AHP to allow room for rest and for the things that should never be taken for granted. As much as I love this business that I have grown, I love my family more and I need to make time to be present.
3. Saying No
I am a natural-born people pleaser. This means that I say YES to everything. Whether I want to do it or not, I don’t want to “hurt anyones feelings” so I say Yes to every opportunity. This need to people please increased with this business because I felt like it was better to be doing something rather than nothing. But what I am finally realizing is that the more I say yes to the things that don’t align with my brand, the less time I have to devote to serving my clients well and growing my business in the manner that I dream of.
4. Saying Yes
Contradictory right?? But hear me out….Rather than to dreaming of the things that I “wish” I could be doing, I am going to DO them as best I can!! The things in this industry that light a fire inside of me, keep my creativity flowing, and align with the reason that I fell in love with this business are the things that I need to be saying yes to… Wishing for the things that we don’t feel deserving of brings us down and is a waste of time. So from now on, I will be saying yes to the things that my heart so deeply desires for this business. (Like the first styled shoot for AHP coming in 2016!!)
All of the above bullet points lead to one thing really… and that thing is to give myself grace. No matter how hard I try, I am not wonder woman. I cannot do it all. And whether that is hard to hear or not, it is truthful. Not only am I not wonder woman, but I am not any other woman out there other than Me, so no longer will l drain myself trying to keep up with her (whoever she may be). My best is the best I can do, and I will do it fabulously.
If you are feeling a bit burnt out by the constant race you are running in life or if you are allowing things (like work) to get in the way of spending quality time with the people closest to you heart, I challenge you to make a change, my friend… I know that you won’t regret it. And I do not mean “Make a new years resolution because its the end of the year” kind of change… I mean “Make meaningful changes in your lifestyle that will have such a big impact on your happiness, your sanity, and your heart”.