I was in my yoga class this morning and in between telling me to ‘be taller’ and ‘find strength in my core’ and ‘push a little bit further’, the yoga teacher did say something that resonated with me. I can’t remember her exact words verbatim, mostly because I as busy trying to get my third eye on my knee and my leg straight, but it went something like this…
“At the end of the day, we’re all so quick to worry about what we haven’t done, we tend forget the amazing things we have achieved.”
I started to think of all the evenings I’ve slumped on the sofa after putting The Small to bed and thought to myself, “I really should get up and do the laundry, or mop the floors or feed the cats or change the bed or clean the bathroom,” but I don’t. I don’t have the energy and I spend the rest of the evening with this niggling anxiety loitering at the back of my mind that says, “You shouldn’t be sat down. You’ve got a million things to do that you didn’t achieve today.”
Well, you know what I say to that voice? I say “Screw you secret inner head voice. I’ve worked my ass off all day and even if the ONLY thing I achieved was keeping myself and The Small alive then that’s a win.” Of course, most days, that’s not the only thing that we achieve.
Most days we’re up before the sun, with a little one and before 8am you’ve read five books, had a tea party, put three dolls to bed, provided real-life breakfast and maybe found a minute to make yourself a cup of coffee. By 12.30pm, you’ve been to the park, pushed some swings, supported some slides, facilitated the second outfit of the day because the first got covered in mud, you’ve maybe been to the post office and quite seriously considered vacuuming.
By 1pm, with some luck and a good wind, you’ve put The Small to sleep for a bit. Now is the perfect time to do that laundry and housework but even if you don’t want to, you may even manage to read Grazia from cover to cover. Any momma knows that’s a real achievement.
By 5pm, you’ve cooked your third meal of the day. You may have even managed to eat yourself and you’ve read books 15 through 23 even though she only sat through one of them but was adamant that she wanted to read all the others (she was lying). Every jigsaw puzzle is out, every toy is on the floor and you may even be preparing your fourth meal of the day for you and your other half to enjoy once The Small is asleep.
I could go on – but my point is clear – we are so busy worrying and stressing ourselves silly about the shit that we didn’t manage to get done that we forget to high-five ourselves for the heap of stuff we did get done. So, tonight, when you’ve put your Smalls to sleep and you are trying to summon the energy to do more ‘stuff’…don’t. Stop, pour yourself a drink, or make a tea, read a book, read Vogue, watch TED, watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians, watch House of Cards. Do something relaxing, enjoyable and fuck the other shit.
Trust me…it’ll still be there in the morning.