This month, I knew what I had to do. I had to finish a transition with a previous position while also running my company for the first time. This meant I was literally having to be two people at once. And anyone who knows me knows I am usually more than two people at once, so let's just say four people for the month. I had to work myself to the bone, rushing and running, going against all I promised I wouldn't do, ignoring my exhaustion, pushing through to just get through this month, knowing it would be worth it. I had a responsibility I had to fulfill, and I put my responsibility to take care of myself aside to be able to take care of everyone else.
I told my friends that this is just one of the ebbs and flows of our friendship, and for this month, I would not be at my best socially and didn't have time for small talk or events and to bear with me. I made sure to keep my family as close as possible, knowing they'd let me be a little overly stressed and anxious and not judge me for it. I planned a trip to India at the end of the month knowing I would need to be swung all the way to the other end of the pendulum to bring me back to center again. Was this smart? No, but I didn't have a choice. I had commitments, I had to find a way to work and do it all. A friend of mine, Kavita Patel, who's also a life/relationship coach, said to me, "You are at a work level of 10 and you need to get to a 6." I said, "Yes, I know," and the next thing she said was, "So what are you going to do to get there?"
While this seemed like a basic idea, it was a bit of an awakening for me. I have the control, and more importantly, I need to take notice and care for myself just as I care for everyone else. I learned this over the past six months as I gave up drinking and eating meat and vowed to do yoga every day, but that is only one piece of the puzzle. It is never okay to put everyone else in front of yourself. As I look forward to this new part of my journey, I know I have surrounded myself with people who will not take advantage of me -- but news flash, when you are working for someone else, they are never going to say "work less"; when you are with your friends or family they may say "work less" and you will say, "yeah, yeah, I know," and ignore their advice. The only person that can tell you to work less on everything else and work more on yourself is you. 2012 was the year for building networks, relationships, projects and ideas, and I believe 2013 is a tipping point: the year where those who have survived and flourished during the recession, who have been bombarded with emails all year long, will realize that life is too short to not make the time for the people you love or -- most importantly -- to make the time to love yourself.
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