“Let go of who you’ve been to become who you’re meant to be.”
The sign outside of a nearby church flashed these words at passersby — and while the message was originally there in preparation for the Lenten season, I can’t help but think this message is SO timely right now with everything going on in the world.
In many ways, we’ve been forced to give up things we love with the intention of social distancing from others. In that process, we’ve been breaking old habits and routines, resulting in the creation of new ones — giving up daily coffee runs for slow mornings brewing a pot of coffee at home, for example.
Some of what we’ve given up in this period we can’t WAIT to get back to; I miss Target just as much as you do. But when the quarantine period finally lifts and the world starts to fall into our new “normal,” will you immediately return to the same routines, same habits, same person you were before the pandemic took effect?
Think about it: similar to the reality that we have limited space and money to spend on things on our lives, we also have limited time. (This is even more definite.) I'm a huge believer that every item in your home should serve a purpose — even if that purpose is joy. (Thank for you enlightening the world to the importance of intentional belongings, Marie Kondo!) And just as we are mindful of the items that fill our physical space, we should be just as intentional with the commitments, tasks, engagements, and people that fill our environment and mental space. Which of the previous habits and routines you carried added true value to your life?
This radical shift is an opportunity to discover your ideal self on a deeper level and actually hold onto some of the NEW routines and habits you’ve picked up over the last few weeks.
Think back to how you spent your time before; maybe things felt rushed and stressed. Maybe you found yourself spending excessive amounts of money at stores out of boredom. (Ok, it can be argued that we’re doing that now as well, but just online.) Maybe you defaulted to eating out *all the time* because it was faster and easier.
How are you spending your time now? Maybe you finally cracked open that book that’s been sitting at your bedside for months. Or you dug out the art supplies for the kids because they’re bored of their toys at home. Or you experimented in the kitchen as a family. Or you had picnics on the lawn. Or you decided to finally fix that thing in your house that’s been annoying everyone for months. You get the picture.
We’ve given up old habits (not by choice), and some of those things will feel SO GOOD to get back to. I can’t wait to spend afternoons at the coffee shop again or perusing the book store with my daughter or even scouring the Bullseye Playground at Target.
But some of those habits might be better left in the past and replaced with new ones that feel good, that foster communication and family togetherness, that gives you a sense of accomplishment, that expands your mindset and way of thinking.
What are you giving up from your previous self in order to cultivate beautiful new habits and routines in your life?
I created a free worksheet (click here to download) with prompts for you to work through this question and identify your higher self. You deserve to grow through this experience, friend. As always, I’ll be right here cheering you on!