One of the hardest things about being a mum is time. There’s never enough of it.
Days are a constant negotiation between the things we have to do and the things we want to do, and it’s the wants that always lose. Those things like go for a walk, have a soak in the tub, sit and read, do a hobby, follow a dream, breath.
So many options, so little time.
Remember the days when you had time? Time to wake-up on your own terms, eat on your own terms, pee and shower on your own (terms)? Post-kids, life becomes an exercise in fitting things in.
Our days and weeks fill up with the things we have to do and before you know it, another month has passed and you still haven’t done anything to nurture and nourish yourself, extend or treat yourself. Or your attempts are interrupted, incomplete, short-lived or deferred.
At some point I developed a slight sense of panic when I thought of how many weeks had slipped by without achieving any of the things I wanted to do because I’d been busy completing things I had to do.
Time is irreplaceable. This moment, is gone now, never to return. Is it just that I’m a mother that I feel time’s passing so keenly, or is it that age thing (you know, the thing that happens because you enter your 40s and your body develops a distinct tilt to the south)?
I’m trying to develop a rockstar-attitude towards time.
As in Big Rocks v Little Rocks.
If you’ve never heard of the Big Rock theory, you can see American author and leadership educator the late Dr Stephen Covey demonstrate it here. It shows how if you fill your life up with little rocks – the small, inconsequential stuff – there’s no room left at the end (of life) to fit in the big rocks – the big stuff, the rock-your-world stuff (sorry for the pun).
But if you take care of the big stuff first – do the things that light you up – there’s still plenty of room left to fit everything else in as well. The small stuff slips in to place in amongst the big stuff.
If you never make time for the things, people and events that bring you joy, lift and fill you up, all you’re left with is a life full of grit and pebble.
Our lives can be swamped with the small stuff, like wading through a tank of gravel. Not necessarily unhappy, but perhaps not fully-filled. Perhaps feeling like it’s all a bit of a grind.
We need those big chunks of life in our tank. We need to make time for them so that our jar is full to the brim with everything we need to feel satisfied.
Setting aside some time for those big rocks – emotional and spiritual nourishment, growth, dreams, adventure and just plain old fun – won’t stop the chores from getting done. They might get done a little later, or a little less thoroughly, but the necessary gravel will be attended to.