A couple of years back I went on my first yoga retreat. The theme was ‘creating space’. I have to admit, I thought this was a bit airy fairy. If I wanted space, wouldn’t I just go into a field or a nice long walk on a sparse beach?
A year or so later, after working non-stop on my full time job, as a yoga teacher, creating yoga retreats and youtube videos, developing my social media presence and renovating a property, trying to have a bit of a social life….along with all the family dramas many of us endure, I felt exhausted. Quite trapped in fact.
I then really felt what it is like to have a lack of space in my life. I craved a day to wake up to a manageable to-do list that I knew I could get through and feel accomplished yet relaxed, that I could do spontaneous things and not be planning seeing friends a month in advance. I stumbled upon Melissa Ambrosini’s podcast and she did a short episode on ‘Creating Space’. Timing was perfect for what I was needing, this absolutely resonated.
Before I move on with my story, have a think to yourself. Over the past few months have you felt:
- Exhausted by a never ending to do list
- Like you never do anything spontaneuous
- You’re arranging to meet friends months in advance because your diary is jammed
- You want to say yes to everything as you fear letting others down
- When you do attend social occassions you can’t give it your all as you’re tired
- You wished you knew how to prioritise but no idea how!
- You hate the idea of saying no. So much so that you’d jeopardise the good nights sleep that your body needs in order to please others
- You say yes to every piece of work that comes your way, even when overworked already
If you’ve answered yes to any of the above, you may be in the boat I was in just a few months ago and benefit from my advice on how to create some more white space in your life.
I’m definitely not perfect at doing this. I still get tired, just not the level of exhaustion I used to. I still do things I want to stop, e.g. one of the night yoga classes I take. I get home every Tuesday DRAINED and have to get up at 5.30am the next day to teach another class It is too much! One of my goals for 2019 is to stop teaching in the evenings after a full day at work, it is too much for my body!
How I’m Creating More White Space In My Life is as follows:
1. Say ‘yes’ to less.
My rule of thumb is that if it isn’t a ‘hell yeah’ then I politely decline. Thanks to my friend Rose for teaching this to me!
Another way to know what to prioritise is questioning yourself, ‘if I was asked to do this thing/see this person tonight, would I say yes?’. This helps us to not book stuff in the future which we’re not 100% committed to. In my opinion this is best for both parties. Nobody wants someone at their party who wishes they were elsewhere.
2. Focussing on the friends I LOVE