Day 279/366 days Towards Self-Mastery.
Seriously consider whether the fast track to success is serving you and your family. Downsizing, and as Sarah describes it "downshifting" has been a phenomenon since the 1980's.
Recognizing that keeping up with career and appearances, pacing yourself with your ambitious and busy friends and colleagues eats into your personal life, and chews up your time for creativity and connection.
There are no rules about who can get to the top fastest, yet society imposes expectations that become our unspoken, unwritten rules of a game we all get caught up in, fondly known as the rat race.
It's important to think about the quality of a life that you really want to live, and consider how you might adjust to start living it today. There has probably never been a more supportive time to take those steps than now during the pandemic.
Two decades ago I downsized and downshifted. From a 5 bedroom home to an 86 square meter home in one move, I compacted my lifestyle and reduced my debt to zero, my housekeeping hours to 2 hours per week, my surrounds to exquisitely beautiful, practical and comfortable, and opened my mind to self-reflection and inner enquiry.
No longer striving to grow a large and successful business I settled for a good income and a business that required only 30 hours per week of maintenance.
The results? Since then I have lived free from debt, and free to live life more fully on my terms - 20 of the best years of my life. That decision liberated energy for me to be the parent, sibling, daughter and friend that I really want to be.
During this pandemic my life has only been enhanced. More time to dig deeper into self-reflection and the collective impact of the traumatic lifestyle that most of us live. My income has doubled, my health has gone from strength to strength. And I still have time to take a 10 day meditation retreat at short notice.
Your race to the top may occupy your working years. Then what? Will you have the connections and family relationships to support you as you age? Will you feel that this is a life well-lived?
Necessity is the mother of invention. You could if you choose, use the limits of this pandemic to rightsize your life and live your best life, this time around.
366 days Towards Self-Mastery
When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)
I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.
As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.
My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?
I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.
Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.
This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.