My children returned to in-person instruction yesterday, and since I have a few minutes, I wanted to update you all on some things that I’ve been doing to manage this montage of stress that has been accruing since mid-March!
Since that time, I’ve been mom, wife, teacher, CEO, CIO, the maid, project manager, sourcing professional, secretary, parliamentarian, Zoom SME, nurse, back-office support, consulting, student… You know, being every woman. Initially, it seemed a bit hectic, but I’ve been using some strategies that have helped me out immensely. This is my GPS method.
Gratitude, Patience, Support
The first being, practicing gratitude. Practicing gratitude might seem like a kind of small thing until you understand that it’s bigger than an instinctive thank you! The instinctive thank you is what we learned as children to do when someone gives you something or performs an act of service, either paid or unpaid. But practicing gratitude is being intentional and vulnerable for the energy, effort, and thoughtfulness behind the gift or services provided. It is receiving the blessing and the intent behind the gift.
The second and probably the most difficult is being patient with yourself. Let’s be real, both men and women are very hard themselves. We are our own best critic. And who better than you to tell you about you? Right? We need to give ourselves the level of patience that we provide our customers, our children, our spouses, our parents, our siblings, our close circle of friends, and our employers…times ten! Allowing yourself patience means that you don’t rush your process, your growth, or your healing, but instead, you give yourself the kind of latitude that you would for someone you care for deeply.
The last and most important thing that I offer is that you design rock-solid support systems. You are not an island, and despite your superhero status, you are still human! You need a circle of friends with whom you can discuss everyday stressors. Sometimes life is weighty, and no one should have to carry their load alone. I am fortunate enough to have a rock-solid sister circle. We laugh together. We cry together. We hold each other accountable.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t have peace in a stressful environment. What I can do is be grateful for the little things, the people in my life, the space that I call home, family, and friends. If you find yourself in a stressful environment, try using the GPS method to get you en route to peace! I will meet you there.
Now get you some peace!