I had a realization today in a coaching session. I was asked to rank myself, or my satisfaction, in 12 key areas of my life on a scale from 1 to 10. Sitting there looking at these areas of my life made me realize I there was quite an imbalance in my life regarding these 12 areas. I was pretty happy with quite a few of the areas, but four areas came up very short.
I had my family and relationships in a place where I felt good, my time, career, organization, and motivation are areas where I feel good and I know I am moving toward where I want to be, but my health, fitness, spirituality, and nutrition were all very low numbers. Like, I had almost forgotten they were areas in my life that needed focus and attention.
oh hello there spirituality! I forgot about you in all the hustle to change my purpose in life…um sorry?
As I went through the coaching session and was asked about the different areas of my life and where I was coming up short, I realized that I didn’t really want to focus on those areas right now…where my heart and mind are right now is on my relationships: family, friends, husband, baby, and most importantly myself, and on my new career path which involves focusing on areas in my life such as time management, organization, purpose, motivation, and productivity.
That is where my goals lie, in bettering my relationships with myself and the ones I love and making my life one that is inline with my values. For some reason spirituality, health, and nutrition just don’t seem to fit into that right now.
But that didn’t seem right either…those are categories that used to be THE MOST IMPORTANT and now I just don’t care? That didn’t sound true either but that was how I felt…every question, every thought was answered with “I don’t want to focus on that right now”.
As I took a deeper dive into my thoughts and feelings around all of these areas in my life, I realized that what was out of whack wasn’t that I was no longer interested in my health, wellness, and spirituality, it was the opposite: I am doing enough in those areas.What is out of whack is my expectations for myself in those areas.
What I realized is that I need to look at my observations and rank those from 1 to 10 not my expectations.
My expectations in those areas are based on a past me. That me from the past had time, energy, and focus to devote A LOT to spirituality and wellness. She took spirituality very seriously and meditated, did yoga, hiked and skied in the mountains, had quiet time in nature, spent lots of time cooking and shopping for delicious healthy food. That was the way I honored myself then, and how I valued myself.
That Amanda spent at least 50 % of her time in those areas alone, with all the others crammed into the other 50%. Not to say that was better or worse but that was THAT Amanda. And judging THIS Amanda NOW from a scale of 1 to 10 on how she spends her time and focus in those areas I am coming up woefully short.
What I realized is THIS Amanda, RIGHT NOW, does not need that spiritual time, she needs to fulfil her purpose and that purpose is loving herself and the people important to her and working towards a life that lights her up. Surprisingly spirituality and wellness are not front and center in that mission.
The reality is, I am fine with that right now and I need to stop holding myself to a standard that is not aligned with what I need and want in this moment. I need to stop comparing myself to who I was and love the one I am now. Which means honoring her and her needs. I need to not judge myself from my expectations, I need to love myself from my observations of what I am doing and being and accomplishing in this moment.
If I stood back and just observed I would see that, while I am not the physically and spiritually fit Amanda of two years ago, I am making a big change in my life which takes a lot of courage, strength, and gutsiness and I am proud of her. And I love her. And she even makes time each day to do a few stretches, take a walk, and have some quiet meditative time, and you know what? That is enough for her right now.
It is so important to understand the difference between expectations and observations. Expectations come with so much emotion and judgment, but observations are facts, they are circumstantial, no feelings and emotion attached. If you could look at your situation from a place of observation instead of judgment and expectation what would you see?
We are so often quick to judge ourselves and each other from a place of unmet expectations. When we do this, we will always be disappointed. When something does not live up to our expectations we will more than likely be disappointed, discouraged, or upset. But what if you looked at a situation, a person, an event from a factual place, a neutral place? One of observation only? What would you see? How would you feel differently about the situation or event? Chances are, you would be pleasantly surprised.
It was so surprising to me to realize that I was holding THIS Amanda up to expectations from OLD Amanda. Once I stepped back and just observed I realized that THIS Amanda is doing a great job at what matters in this moment, and that is what is important.
I challenge you to take a look at areas in your life where you feel upset, disappointed, stuck, and just observe: what are the unmet expectations? What are the facts of the situation? How does that change your outlook? Leave a comment below or email me. I would love to hear fro you!