How many times a week, or even a day, do you say "I have to..."
"I have to do the laundry."
"I have to go to work."
"I have to pick up the kids."
"I have to go get groceries."
"I have to go to the gym." Do you really HAVE to? Who is forcing you?
The words we use say a lot about, and have a great affect on, how we feel about a matter. Victim or empowered? Slave or master to our time and energy?
Everything in life is a choice. How much better would it feel to replace "have to" with "choose to"?
I gave up lists a few years ago as a practice to just do what was next and not overload myself so much.
I needed to take a break from behaving as a human doing, instead of a human being.
And by no lists, I mean no note taking , no grocery lists no lists of any kind.
Fun things happened and I found out the whole world didn’t stop if I had to go to the grocery store every single day because I kept forgetting stuff. 💛Hello, human-ness.
What getting rid of lists did for me was enable me to step away from the illusion that I was crushing it by getting so much stuff done. I got to lay down the myth that I was only as good as how many things I crossed off in a single day.
And it gave me a chance to linger and be more curious about my life. I also bought a tacky-cute blue garden gnome on my first list-less grocery trip and it’s a daily reminder that lists definitely are NOT what I need to thrive.
Fast forward to this year when I have experienced so much autoimmune brain fog I realized I was forgetting some important stuff. Like every day. So I started writing shit down, you know because I needed to remember. But before I knew it I was back into human doing-ness again, filing pages with things that only served to raise my anxiety and drain me of nourishment.
So I found a third way- maybe it will give you a chance to nourish your own life a different way: I have a list that has 5 things on it.
Everything else goes under the line item:
My have-to’s are things like call out my anxiety, Connect with God during the day, be honest about my feelings and how they are affecting my behavior.
My get to’s are more accomplishing stuff. Buy cat food, teach yoga, post on iG, schedule that coaching appointment.
And then everything else, All the pressing stuff I don’t have time for goes into tomorrow.
I’m learning I have to believe in the grace tomorrow will bring so I get to do more of what I love.
"Have to" is an obligation, a chore, a nuisance. "Get to" is a privilege and a gift. "Have to" is a perspective about necessity. "Get to" is a perspective about desire.
How are you viewing your tasks? How are you viewing your daily routine? How are you viewing your life?
Because of you
I used to stand out here and look at the moon cuz I couldn't get my mind off you for all the right reasons.
Now I stand out here feeling the cold wind whip past me because I can't get my mind off you for all the wrong reasons.
Because I shouldn't have to put up a front when I talk to your face, only to break down and blow up in anger, frustration, and sadness when a screen separates us.
Because my heart shouldn't race in all the wrong ways when my phone makes a longer-than-usual vibration for texts.
Because I shouldn't feel my chest clench when you do things for her that you wouldn't do for me.
Because I did things for you that I wouldn't do for anyone else, and I regret it.
Because I let you do things to me that I don't even do to myself, and the very thought of it makes my skin crawl.
Because everything we were goes against everything I am.
So I'll just stand here, and let the cold wind whip past me until I forget who you are.
And one day, I'll have a body that you haven't touched.