I talk to so many women who are longing to create a life filled with purpose and do work that serves others in a meaningful way. It seems to be the main theme across the board of women who are looking for a career change, starting anew after raising their children, or transitioning from being student to the professional work force.
As women, we seem to have innate desire to want to change the world. Another thing I have noticed in all of the many conversations is that these very same women are stretched beyond their limits with taking care of others’ needs and in an attempt to use their passions to serve.
It is fulfilling to be involved in a field that helps others, and it is noble to take up a cause. Helping underprivileged children, saving the environment, creating community, inspiring others through words or fighting for the rights of those who can’t fight for themselves are all righteous and important actions that help make the world a better place.
But, you can’t do it if you are exhausted… or worse.
If you are overwhelmed with busyness and chaos in your life to the point of not taking care of your own health, then you really can’t be much good to others. I can only say this, because I have made this mistake in my life. A few years ago I was pushing myself very hard… doing, doing, doing to accomplish things out in the world; while putting off things I needed to do to take care of myself. The consequence of that was getting really sick and not being able to help anyone, work, or even take care of my own daughter.
In this midst of being so busy caring for others, it is easy to forget all of your strength comes from the quality of you physical and mental health. Think about what happens when you become ill – everything comes to a screeching halt, and all of your good intentions are out the window until you get well.
Scheduling time for yourself or just saying “NO” to some requests will help allow you the ability to be of more help to others in the long run. According to Author Don Miguel Ruiz, “Saying no is an act of loving yourself.” When I start to feel guilty about saying no to someone or something, I now remind myself saying “No” is a “Yes” to me.
Taking time away from work or caring for others to do something for yourself – however that may be for you – whether it’s a massage, meditation, exercise, a funny movie, a weekend get-away, taking a class that inspires you, or just meeting a good friend to laugh out loud over coffee will rejuvenate you instead of putting you behind schedule. It will allow you to better serve others after you have taken the time you need just for you. This concept is not selfish; contrary to what it sometimes may seem.
You really do have the power to heal the world. You just have to start with yourself.
Maureen Keyte is a Certified Personal Coach and Professional Writer with a passion for helping others through life transitions in order to become the best versions of themselves. Her writing has been published in several regional and national print and online publications. She is also a grant and marketing writer for non-profit agencies and businesses that focus on empowering women and young girls. Contact – Website – Facebook – LinkedIn – Pinterest – Twitter
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