When I was little I loved to play outside. Alone, in a gaggle of kids, it didn’t matter. I would imagine all sorts of scenarios, my neighborhood transformed into a castle or a battlefield or a prairie.
It was my blank canvas, every day after school. My little tribe of friends and I would spend hours playing hide-and-seek or kickball, each endeavor taken on with the perfect blend of high-stakes and wild, scrappy fun. It was so fun that often I didn’t want to come inside to eat. I didn’t want to come inside when it got dark. Sometimes I didn’t even want to go inside to pee! I would hold it as long as I could and then dash in at the last second! Why couldn’t we just play as long as we wanted?
Obviously, my parents did not let us take over the cul-de-sac and descend into a Lord of the Flies situation. As much as I complained, I was always in to eat dinner with my family and saying goodnight when the streetlights turned on. My parents were pretty hardcore with structure. And now I’m able to look back and see that they were not, in fact, trying to give away my highly-strategized hiding place. They simply knew that if I didn’t eat and have some wind-down time at home before bed, I’d be a hot, grumpy mess the next day. They were demonstrating margins for me before I knew what they were and why they were important.
These little rituals of creating space for self-care that they lovingly implemented for me prompted me to set up boundaries and structure for myself later on. Is it a flawless system? No way.
But I can clearly see the fruit when I give myself margins in my personal and professional life.
My most recent post dealt with authenticity. How knowing yourself and acting in harmony with your true goals and beliefs will set you up for success in a next-level way. The natural next step in this life-styling process is setting up margins for yourself. Sidenote: boundaries is also a useful word, but many people associate it with deprivation or lack, so I like “margin” or “buffer” as an alternative. Whatever floats your boat. In this act of margin or boundary- setting, it may feel at first like you are restricting yourself from what you need to/should/could/want to be doing. But I want to invite you to shift your perspective for a moment.
What if instead of saying “no” to everything, you were saying “YES!” to your goals and needs?
Instead of saying no to a night out with friends, say YES to a financial goal for this month!
Instead of saying no to sleeping in, say YES to your workout goal this week!
Instead of saying no to getting ahead on work tasks, say YES to investing in relationship with your partner/family/friends!
Instead of saying no to a call that can wait till tomorrow, say YES to a half-hour of journaling and meditation before bed.
By consciously setting your goals and intentions, you can actively create the space that you need to see those succeed. But it takes discipline and vision. Two things that don’t just come to you. They take work and exercise to become clear and effective. But the good news is that you can STRENGTHEN those muscles. Use your goals as motivation.
For so many people, habit and fatigue overcome ambition, and that great business idea in the back of their minds fades away as they fall asleep to Netflix. I’m not talking about burning ALL the midnight oil, I’m just talking about mindful delegation of your time to your goals. It can be as small or massive as YOU want it to be. But they won’t come to you if you don’t make room for them.
So this week, I invite you to say yes to just one goal. Create space for it to thrive and see what starts rolling. If you need a hand casting vision or putting this all into practice, email me. I’d love to set up a time to talk with you about the life you want to create.
Big love and big margins,