Ready, Set, No! (A Word from Future Me)

I had a great summer. Long walks on the beach, sunrises over the ocean, meals prepared by someone else and served to me poolside. Aaaah. I feel relaxed, rejuvenated and ready to go.

Which is a problem.  

Rejuvenation can be deceiving in its feeling of fabulousness, calm and the ability to do anything. And in this moment it is true -- I am well taken care of and eager to help out others in need. But this moment is a result of weeks of relaxation, critical self-care, and a demand-free schedule. I didn’t just wake up feeling like this.

Now Super-rejuvenated me of today is about to walk back into work and make a bunch of choices for Super-overwhelmed me of tomorrow. The one who will be living the crazy schedule, with no access to the beach, sunrises or poolside meals. Needless to say, she’s getting pissy already. So here’s a word from future me:

Before you take on that project

Sign up to run that committee

Vow to make organic lunches daily

Start the new regimen

Plan that family gathering

Offer to host the holidays

Schedule that weekly meeting

Sign off on the kids’ afterschool activities

Promise that you’ll meet up more

Resume your daily routine

Remember me.

Up at dawn, down at midnight. Busy, busy, busy with barely a moment to myself. Well-meaning intentions filling up my calendar, my time, my life. The demands get longer as the days get shorter. Mathematically speaking, I am screwed.

The answer is always the same. Subtract to-do time from to-be time, leaving me with little me time. Time to pause and think and breathe pushed off and carried over for another week, month (summer?) where I can catch a break, see a sunrise, rejuvenate.

So I ask of you, (she says) remember me. Tired me, stressed me, overwhelmed me, end -of-my-rope me. And take a moment before you refill your plate to see if you can work in more time for me. More time for self-care. More time for good times. More time for TV. More time for nothing at all. More time for a sunrise or two.

Remember that every no to them is a yes to me. I promise you, you won’t regret it. And then you’ll be ready and set to go.