“If you want something done, ask a busy woman.”
I’m not sure where I first heard this phrase, but I remember when I heard it, my mind went through several reactions.
Why would you ask a busy woman? She’s already busy! Give her a break!
After a little more reflection…
Heck yeah, ask a busy woman! Because we get s— done!
And then, more recently, after A LOT more reflection…
Of course you’d ask a busy woman. Not because she’s amazing or awesome or better at doing things than other people. You’d ask her because…
A busy woman has no boundaries.
I know. Because I’m a recovering busy woman.
I feel like I’m entering a new phase of my minimalism journey. Seven years ago I started on this path by decluttering my physical stuff. I let go of towels, shoes, coffee cups, paperwork, books, clothing, and more. I never kept stats, but I’ve probably donated about 70% of my possessions in the past seven years.
This has brought me a great sense of freedom. I spend less time cleaning, picking up, dusting, repairing, and maintaining my stuff, which has freed me to do some pretty cool things, like quit my teaching job and become an entrepreneur, author and speaker.
I wouldn’t trade the freedom I have now for any of the things I let go, but lately, I’ve realized that there’s a cluttered area of my life that I haven’t addressed… my time.
You see, I’m a do-er, an achiever. Okay, okay, let’s be honest, a chronic overachiever. I was a 4.0 in high school and college. I painstakingly wrote and rewrote every paper I ever turned in. In my teaching career, I spent hours typing meticulous lesson plans and watched in disbelief as my colleagues penciled a few notes in their plan books and left the building at 3:00.
I remember once in college, Josh (my then-boyfriend-now-husband) remarked: “You know, you could work half as hard and still get the best grade in the class.”
I knew the truth of this the moment he said it. (And yes, his ability to see me exactly as I am is one of the reasons I love him.) But having someone say this to me out loud stopped me. While I grasped the truth of it, it simultaneously forced me to see another, more troubling truth:
“I don’t know how to work less hard,” I said to him, rather helplessly. “This is the only way I know how to work.”
And it’s true.
150% has been my default mode for most of my life. It’s something I’ve prided myself on, something parents and teachers and bosses have praised me for. But as I get older–I’ll be celebrating my 38th birthday next week–I’ve realized something else…
Working hard all the time doesn’t bring me much joy. In fact, it often does just the opposite. It makes me feel tired, anxious, and insecure.
So I’m setting about changing that.
This is daunting to me. I know how to attack a closet filled with old purses and shoes. But a schedule packed with commitments and to-do lists? That’s harder for me to declutter.
So why am I telling you all of this?
Because I want to bring you alongside me as I enter Phase 2 of Rose’s Great Minimalism Experiment: decluttering my time.
I know this will be much, much harder for me than Phase 1, and I need the support. I need to know that you’re here with me, that you’ll cheer me on as I learn how to stop working so damn much and start relaxing into my life more.
So… I have a favor to ask…
If you’re reading this and something I wrote connects with you, will you let me know? You can email me personally at [email protected] and just let me know that you’re in my corner. I’d really appreciate it. (And please know that when you’re ready to set about changing something significant in your life, I’ll be in your corner, too!)
And don’t worry, I’ll still write about decluttering physical things on this blog. (I can’t help myself!) But I wanted to let you know that you might notice a trend toward a more internal look at minimalism, as I set about the task of decluttering my mind, emotions, and time. (In other words, you’re about to get an upfront and personal look at my psyche, so watch out! Ha!)
Thanks for being along on this journey with me. I’m so blessed and honored to be able to do what I do and to have such amazing people to share it with.
Cheers to decluttered closets AND calendars,
PS Are you ready to get started on your own journey toward a less-is-more kinda life? If so, grab my FREE minimalism starter guide and let’s get going!