Over the past week, I have been asked, "How do you do it all?". As I reflect this week on the past nine years, I sometimes I wonder how I do it all. Over the past 9 years, I have:
1. Worked full time in education
2. Completed both my masters and doctorate degree
3. Managed two studios: one in Prescott Valley and 1 in Phoenix
4. Opened the shop in Phoenix 4 years ago
5. Raised three amazing stepchildren
6. Moved to Phoenix and Started a new chapter in my career
7. Spent hours working on marketing and branding our studios
8. Just recently, opened a new business with my husband for his spray paint art called AZ Spray Art Evolution
Ok so when I reread this I think "holy crap" there is not enough time in the day. Even through there are not enough hours in the day I have learned a few things over the past nine years that I think are very important. We have all heard the saying, “When mama isn’t happy no one is happy!”
I have focused on this saying over the past year. Don’t get me wrong I have loved my life, but I until recently I never said “NO”, no matter what the task was. I always wanted to give to everyone else before I gave to myself. Most of us as women I am sure feel this way. Ladies, I am here to tell you that you have to say no at times and here is why.
First, if you are not in a healthy mind set you cannot give to the rest of your family the way that you should. There were days, that I woke up at 6 am and didn’t stop until 12 am. It got to the point where I couldn’t do it anymore. I wasn’t sleeping, I was tired all the time, and it was making me sick. I finally realized that I needed to do one thing for me each day. It could be watching an hour of TV or reading a book that had nothing to do with working, the businesses, or my dissertation. Take a walk or go for a run for 30 minutes. Take a bath or get a massage. So please, do something for at least 30 minutes each day that you enjoy. Here is the key though, nothing, I mean nothing can get in the way of those 30 minutes.
Yes, that is the hard part, but you have to allow yourself time to decompress and unwind.
Second, fight for what you want. I have learned that in both my business and professional career that I can’t keep quiet. People can’t read our minds. As much as we would love for that to happen it doesn’t. I learned that I had to speak up no matter how tough the conversations are going to be. I just kept telling myself that the worse anyone could say is “NO”.
Finally, it’s ok to tell people, “NO”. This is very hard to do, but we cannot over stretch our limits. It we over stretch our limits then everyone around us is affected. We come home from work upset and take it out on the ones we love. We are at home and doing too many things and it effects our performance at work. Before I say yes to anything, I step back and look at everything on my plate at the time and look at the big picture before I commit to anything.
So, hear me out, I am giving you all permission to take 30 minutes to do what you want to do each day, speak your mind in a professional way, and say NO if you need to.
Trust me it took almost a year to adjust to this. I was very over whelmed, and it was affecting my life prior to this realization. I did not realize how much it was affecting me until I had time to reflect. Take time to reflect and readjust if needed. It will only make you more amazing as it has made me a better wife, step-mama, employee, and employer!
Till next time…..
XOXO Dr. Laura