I’ve been running too hard again. I’ve been feeling familiar twinges of panic, desperation, urgency, swimming upstream.

The last time I felt this way, my kids were in grade school and I was working part-time at church, along with writing and speaking, and you know, being a wife and mom and homemaker. I was spent but kept pushing through.

Until one day my daughter was working on her spelling sentences. She came to the word exhausted and this is what she wrote:

When my mom comes home from work, she’s exhausted.

{ouch}

That stopped me dead in my tracks. I was inadvertently teaching my children that ministry – that working – was equated with running yourself into the ground.

I knew I had to make some changes. So I began having conversations asking God if I could stop for just a little while. The long and short of it, I felt him say yes. And so I did. I stopped. And it was glorious.

And then life happened and fast forward to present day and I am an entrepreneur and I am a one-woman-show and there are many moving parts and I’m doing all of this by myself and yet also to myself, and I am realizing that I am driven each day much more so by panic and desperation and scarcity than I am by faith and joy and abundance, and I knew I needed to stop and take a deep breath and think this all through.

Right around this time, I was meeting with a client, and she said, I know how to live. I make dinner and go to work and do the laundry. But I don’t know how to live a life.

I texted her later saying, “I don’t know how to live an {authentic, contented, meaningful, non-reactionary} life.”

And she wrote back, “Yes, that’s exactly it.”

I started mulling all this over. The fatigue I’ve gotten myself into, what my client was saying she was really wishing for out of life, and what I would tell a client if she told me what I was experiencing.

So I reached out to a friend – a fellow coach – for a coaching session of my own. (That’s how much I believe in the power of coaching.) I needed an outside perspective. I needed someone to ask me questions I wasn’t thinking to ask myself or, let's be honest, have been too scared to ask myself. I needed someone to sit with me as I squirmed with the ah-ha moments.

It took vulnerability and courage for me to reach out to her. Just like it does every single time a client fills out one of my questionnaires or registers for a coaching call. It’s saying, I know something’s not right but I can’t quite put my finger on it and I need help, or even, I know something's not right and I know what that something is and I need support to make some changes. 

My coach affirmed me, pointing out how ridiculously much I’ve accomplished since the beginning of the year; she challenged me to evaluate my mindsets on some important issues; and she encouraged me to determine what I can let go of on my crazy self-appointed to-do list so that I can focus on the things that matter most to me. Oh, and she told me to celebrate my success. And, you know, add rest into my day. Little things like that. HUGE IMPORTANT THINGS LIKE THAT.

In other words, Slow down. Find meaning. Stop long enough to say to myself, hey, that was pretty amazing, good job! It's all going to be okay. I'm going to be okay. All I have is all I need.

I’m being reminded that we all need an outside perspective from time to time. I’m being reminded that a life of meaning doesn’t have to be frantic. I’m being reminded that it’s all about progress, not perfection. And I'm being reminded that we actually have some choice in the matter…what we choose to focus on, how tightly we choose to grasp, how scared we let our sweet little hearts get. It's more up to us than we realize.

If you’d like to join the waiting list for my newest group coaching experience, Meaningful Life, running in October, email me today. Details will go out tomorrow to the waiting list and registration will open to the public on Thursday. 

If you’d like to explore working with me as a one-on-one client, I have just a few more spots open this Fall, and you can fill out a questionnaire here. I'll respond within two days with a custom coaching proposal.

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I have a free gift for you!

My e-book collection of essays, You’re Going to Make It Through, will encourage you to keep moving forward and regain some hope!

Please check your email for details, sweet one.