“When it rains it pours.” Maybe. Or maybe when it starts raining we are focused on what is happening to us rather than focusing on how we exist within the larger realm of what’s happening.
I find that I can get in a rut. This rut is something that I experience emotionally, physically, energetically, or within relationships with others. The energy of those with whom I interact tends to have a real effect on how my energy moves through myself and through the world. In this space it feels like even the most nominal of tasks is daunting and that the things that generally bring me joy are a chore. When I get to this place where it seams the rain has turned to torrential downpour and it feels as though I can’t get out, I’ve found one thing to be true: I have to reframe the “have to” in my life. This small change can bring about big results.
What does it look like to reframe my day?
My (Have) To Do List:
- Wake up early because I have to feed / walk the dogs
- Have to go to gym
- Have to make breakfast / lunch for my kids
- Have to get kids dressed and to school
- Have to go to work
- Have to respond to emails
- Have to go to the grocery store
- Have to meet friend for dinner
- Have to call my mom
- Have to pay the stack of bills on the counter
- Have to ask husband about his day before I can go to bed
Now, if I reframe these things, my day looks more like this:
My GET To Do List:
- I get to nurture my pets that I love dearly
- I get to take care of my body today by going to the gym
- I get to send my kids with nutritious food to help them learn and grow today
- I get to spend time on the way to school today talking to my kids about how to face the challenges and enjoy the beauty in their day. I get to hug and kiss them before they are off to be shaped by others.
- I get to go to work so that I can feel purposeful, fulfilled, and provide for my family
- I get to respond to these emails from people who are reaching out to me
- I get to choose foods that are healthy for myself and my family. I get to fuel my body for all of the things that I enjoy doing
- I get to meet my friends for dinner and interact in a space outside of my normal day-to-day. I get to be someone who my friends value.
- I get to call my mom, who loves me unconditionally, and whose day is brightened by knowing that I was thinking about her
- I get to pay my bills so that I may live comfortably and provide a safe environment for my family
- I get to spend time with my husband and hear about the things that are important in his day before I get to refresh and recharge for tomorrow
In each of these examples I am able to turn something that feels like a chore into something that I’m expressing gratitude for. And while I don’t always feel that I “get to” pay my bills, or that I “get to” do the things that are challenging or unpleasant, if I say it out loud, i.e. “I get to clean up this mess” I’m training my brain to find the good. After some time passes of actively, out loud, declaring that I get to, I find that my mood shifts. I’m not as irritated by the mess to clean and I feel genuinely grateful that I have a home to make a mess in, kids who made the mess, and a body that is able to do the cleaning. It takes time and practice, and the reward is so worth the effort.
Wishing you many days full of getting to do all of the things that you used to have to do,