I recently gathered with 80 middle-aged women in New York City for a fun and rewarding day. The event brought laughter, tears, and relief to many of them who finally opened up about a long-held secret. They had spent their lives struggling with organization and low self-esteem at the expense of developing their talents and strengths. While worrying so much about time management and planning, they had scheduled themselves out of their own lives.
Self-Test: Is Your Life on Hold?
Read the statements below and find out.
“Every minute of the day, I am scheduled to do things I am not good at, but I’m trying to be disciplined.”
“I feel too guilty to see friends or to take a break from organizing.”
“I will start thinking about my own life when everything is under control, everyone’s needs are taken care of, and people stop asking me for things.”
“If I criticize myself, I will motivate myself. I just need to grow up.”
If you’ve said any of these things, find a different way to measure success. Gauge it not by the things you’ve checked off your list, but by vitality, authenticity, and connection to what you do.
If you're putting your life on hold -- until your piles of clutter are gone or the laundry is folded, don’t. Figure out what you want to achieve, and move toward it. Ahead, find four find four ways to do just that.
This article appears in the Summer 2010 issue of ADDitude.
To read this issue of ADDitude in full, buy the back issue.