Journal, Storytelling

Making time for walks

I looked around and my life was so busy.

Every morning I’d screen my big to-do list filled with what seemed like very important tasks. For work, for hobbies, for home, for society. I would wake up thinking of all the things I had to do and how I would never possibly have time to do it all. Does anyone else relate to this?

Then, slowly, it started clicking for me: that lifestyle was not what I TRULY wanted for my life. I was not enjoying the simple moments with the people I love because I was always worried about the next important thing I should be doing. I wasn’t writing much and every downtime I had was pretty much used to catch up on sleep. I also realized that I wasn’t just busy because of my own choices, but I was thriving to keep occupied so that I could maintain an implied status of “importance”.

Being busy doesn’t make anyone more important or cool than that person who takes slow beach walks on Tuesday afternoons. Stop to think about it, it really doesn’t.

So I started a thorough exploration of my values, those keywords that put a lot more clarity into what you’ve been doing in life. I uncovered the actions that actually bring me fulfillment and make me feel aligned with the purpose and essence of who I am. I found out that for me, free time is golden. I value the time to cook healthy, vibrant food; the slow morning cuddles with my lover; the end-of-the-day stroll in the bush. I also love being out and about and engaging in fun and exciting activities, but for me, easiness is more important than urgency.

I talked to my coach and we’ve made a plan to design my days in a way that reflects what I really want. The plan included asking for fewer hours at work, saying tons of NO to commitments that I didn’t really want to have, and saying a ton more of YES to activities that complement and align with my passions and talents. Seeing it all placed in a paper in front of me made so much sense, it empowered my ability to take action and ask for the things that were needed at this stage in my life.

The hard part was making others understand that for me, four days in an office is the best I can do. That even though dancing is a passion, there’s only so much time I can dedicate to it, that sometimes friends will be sacrificed for solitude. 

By standing my ground and being honest of what was needed, I was able to be less affected by external opinions and judgments and became even more clear on the path I am following. Slowing down doesn’t feel like cutting off life, it feels more like claiming it back. 

I guess what I am trying to say is that if things are too much for you for a long time, if it feels like life is just going by without you being in charge of it, stop for a while and make YOURSELF a priority. Discover what commitments you are holding onto so tightly but that actually don’t serve you. Discover what is needed for you to have fulfillment every day. Find your support group and brainstorm the actions that will help you build the life you’ve been dreaming of.

Do your self-work, and then go ahead and claim it! Claim the space, the time, the freedom to serve your interests and wellbeing first. Put yourself first so that you can be full enough to a point where you will naturally overflow your passion and joy to others.

Living in your truth is one of the great gifts you can leave to this world. It is a sign that it’s possible, that in the face of all that is demanded of us nowadays, we can still prioritize what really matters, whatever that is for you. 

Go ahead and claim it! I’ll be here to follow you along the journey.

Let’s take a slow walk together?

With love,

Caroline

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2 Comments

  • Reply Diana June 23, 2017 at 7:54 am

    I feel related to that feeling. Although it made thought what I heard in a Sadhguru workshop we dont have a real purpose in life, just living itself is a purpose.

    • Reply Caroline Arco June 29, 2017 at 12:00 pm

      I agree with that Diana. Purpose for me is a mental concept that we humans try to live up to. If we can surrender completely, then just living itself is all that is needed.

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