Q: What happens when you turn your hobby into your full-time job?
A: It takes over your life!
That’s definitely what it feels like for me these days – after almost 2 years of half-hearted business on the side, in 2014 this coaching business has become my main focus.
And at the end of month two, I’ve realised it’s become my only focus. Thoughts and ideas follow me everywhere, even when I’m supposed to be taking a break. Probably the only time I completely forget about it, and all the pressures that come with it, are when I sleep, and when I addict myself to TV.
The funny thing is, up until yesterday, I thought I was looking after myself pretty well. I get up in the mornings and exercise, and meditate. But my morning routine has an ulterior motive: I do them to set me up for a productive day, not actually because I want to look after myself.
Likely you have something similar going on. You go to the gym because you know you’ll work better because of it. You don’t revel in the joy of running, instead you get it over and done with, pat yourself on the back for doing something good for yourself, and then move on with your day. You go through the motions of self-care as just another thing on your to-do list.
You deserve better.
You deserve to feel joy, you deserve to experience happiness every single day of your life.
So how to make it happen? Joy, Happiness and Self-Care are important, but as Dr. David Keene says “the truly important things are never urgent”. There are always going to be things that seem more urgent than sitting down in a corner and reading, painting, or knitting, but whatever it is that brings you joy, it needs to be done.
After a coaching call with my friend Iris Barzen, I committed to taking my mind off my to-do list, and doing at least one joyous thing each day. I’ve gone for a run and soaked in the beautiful Auckland Harbour views. I’ve played with someone’s dog in the park. It feels so very good to just let go and allow my mind to be filled with something other than a growing to-do list!
There was something missing to make it feel truly stress-free though, because now during the day, I worried I’d be too busy to make it out for my evening walk! After going to a talk on success by the fantastic speaker David Keene, I’ve taken a leaf out of his book and scheduled in my Me-Time. So at 5pm today, I have an appointment with myself to do whatever I feel will bring me joy in that moment. I get to stop whatever I’m doing, and just have fun!
I’m excited to see how this new calendarising strategy works out. Many of the most successful people in the world swear by it, so I have a feeling it’s one I’m going to be keeping around!Immediately after putting that in my calendar, I felt such a sense of relief. Now I can focus on the important to-dos for the day, because I know I have an appointment with Joy later in the day. (As a bonus, being productive and focused provides a certain joy of its own!)
I’d like to challenge you this week.
I want you to make an appointment with Joy for this week, and keep it. Fulfilling this challenge will boost your focus, your productivity, and your overall happiness – are you up for it?
Let me know in the comments what you plan to do to bring more Joy into your life? What are you scheduling in this week?