Your Precious Time

I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to enjoying my life more.

Part of my Life Purpose is to be a Lover of Life — a Venusian goddess of fun, play, delight and savoring. Not something that comes naturally to me.

Instead, I’m more of an all work and no play kind of girl. I easily fall into a more “masculine” approach to my life and my business: I’ve inherited a strong delayed gratification mentality. I push myself hard to get to the outcome I want, delaying rewards. I’m better (there’s always more) at not neglecting the self-care the way I used to, but I don’t get around to the really fun, delicious, Life Savoring that I want to be enjoying. At least not until recently.

In part because of my work with my Artist’s Way Accountability and Support Group and in part because of my own calling in this direction, I’ve been paying close attention to spending my precious time wisely in work or at play.

Here’s what I’ve been putting my focus on, and I’d love to hear how you’re inspired by this and how you decide to use your precious time:

1. Enjoying what I’m actually doing, no matter how simple or mundane.

As an Enneagram Four, it’s all too easy for me to get all dramatic about doing “special” things (you know, grand sweeping gestures and the like) and to poo-poo the ordinary and the mundane.

But those seemingly “little” moments are what add up to the beauty of life — watching my son run around with other kids on the lawn. Folding laundry while listening to my husband read to our little guy. Snuggling up watching a movie together. You know.

2. Prioritizing “Real” Life activities.

As a creative entrepreneur who operates largely in the virtual world (blogging and writing on my computer, speaking with clients by phone or Skype), I’m making a point to emphasize more Real Life experiences too, like spending time in the garden with my hands in the rich soil, creating community experiences in our neighborhood like the fabulous progressive dinner we had over the weekend, or simply sitting in the sunshine on my front porch while holding coaching calls.

3. Turning off the virtual world.

I’m also making a point to unplug more from the iTouch, Twitter, Facebook, and my computer. They are seductively engaging, but I find my time swirling away from me into a vortex of web searches and information indulgences.

4. Taking small daily steps to move me towards my Big Dream rather than looking for single massive actions.

This is a big pitfall for me — I look for giant blocks of time to do one project, but then never QUITE get around to it. I’m learning to take “turtle steps,” as Martha Beck trained coach Jill Winski calls them, consistently. And consistently again.

I received a reminder of this on Twitter via @AdviceToWriters over the weekend from Anthony Trollope (a 19th century novelist):

For me, this includes taking small steps to take care of the business of living, like keeping up with my book keeping and paperwork, as well as the business of living my Life Purpose. That way, I don’t get overwhelmed and feel unable to keep moving ahead with my Big Dream.

5. Choosing a grounded approach.

There’s a lot of conversation around integrating the masculine with the feminine. About being goddesses in our own lives. I agree.

I think it’s also about being grounded in remembering what really matters. For me, that is my inner sense of well-being, my connection with my son, my relationship with my husband, my connections with the communities of people I care about, and fulfilling my Big Dream.

Despite what my mind and ego like to say to the contrary about achieving my Big Dream, it’s not ONLY about “making it happen” or “getting it done.” I want to ENJOY my life along the way, have FUN while I’m doing it, no matter what my current circumstances are — no matter how much money I have or don’t have, no matter how much sleep I’m getting or not getting, no matter how many clients I have or don’t have, etc., etc., ad nauseum.

How are you spending your precious time?

I’d love it if you’d share with me the most powerful way this article has inspired you to think about enjoying YOUR precious time.

 

Coming Attractions

~> May 3rd, 2011. My Artist’s Way Accountability & Support Group continues. Details.

~>June 9th, 16th, and 23rd, 2011. Mark your calendar! My brand new Life Purpose Breakthrough Group event series for getting you back on track with what you were put here to do will be happening on June 9th, 16th, and 23rd — only 4 spots available in each group. Find out more here. Three groups are available: Intuition & Inner Wisdom, Creativity and Big Vision. Which one is yours?

~>May 26th to May 28th, 2011. Attending Andrea J. Lee’s Wealthy Thought Leader event via simulcast.

~>May 28th, 2011. Next broadcast of my Dreamification Radio show on Radio Lightworker. Details. Listen from anywhere in the world to this Internet radio show.

Comments

  1. I love this Jenna. One of my themes this year is: Make Time for Life.

    I am also questioning the point of pounding madly towards some business or financial goal if I am not enjoying and savoring my life as I move along.

    In fact, I had this intense experience on Friday of starting slow in the day, having a great lunch with a good friend, and when I came home I felt like I could market from this place of joy and enthusiasm and not stress, which in itself felt like that more grounded place to come from.

    At the end of the day I thought, I want all my marketing experiences to feel like this.

  2. Hi Jenna,
    I love the new e-zine look! It is so nice and clean and eye-catching. Congratulations. Also your photos are really dramatic–intense and beautiful. Wow. Yes OK I am inspired. : )

    The thing that spoke to me most deeply in your last blog is the bit about remembering “my inner sense of well-being.” That’s a good one for me to focus on, I am so lost in a sea a lot of the time lately of feeling just rotten and overwhelmed by negativity around me. My situation will be changing at the end of May, though, and I anticipate much more calm, positive environment. So good to focus on coming back to How am I feeling? What’s good for me? Thanks Jenna!
    kw

    • Kaye, thanks for the note about the e-zine look. I love it too.

      Glad to know your situation will be changing in May, that is great.

      What struck me lately was finding as many ways as possible to enjoy my life regardless of what is going on. Not always easy, but an intriguing practice nonetheless. So often what I am “caught up in” has more to do with stuff I’m worried about rather than something that’s actually, truly, physically, going on around me.

  3. Robin M. says:

    Good to hear you are able to sit outside and both accomplish something AND enjoy the view.

    I am moving in the direction of crafting my future work, whatever it turns out to be, around opportunities to be outside because it only takes a few minutes of fresh air to really lift my mood. Whether using wireless for my new laptop or just doing more physical tasks outside, this is the way to boost creativity for me.

    • Isn’t it amazing how just being outside can shift so much?

      I’m once again inspired to meet my goal of a new laptop, somehow, someway.

  4. On the cusp of making a decision to take on a new job or not, how I use my “precious” time has been on my mind a lot. As a creative entrepreneur myself, it’s kind of flipped my world upside down to think about working for someone else full-time, in both good and unknown ways. My biggest goal this year is what Kaye mentions liking in your post, to cultivate “an inner sense of wellbeing.” Answering yes/no to this work will center on if it meets my core needs first, and not on “shoulds” or if it’ll make other people happy.

    Thanks so much for this post, Jenna! And I agree, love the new site and newsletter design!

    • Thanks, Rose, for the note about the design. :)

      I love that we are on board with an “inner sense of well being.” So important. Reminds me of something I’ve been meaning to write more about lately: Grounded Luxury.

      Thanks!

  5. Anna Urrea says:

    Thank you, Jenna.I have followed you for several years and have enjoyed and been inspired by watching you grow and develop personally through your business. Your new photo really says who you are now – dramatic, sensitive, beautiful, open, exciting! Congrats!!

    I fall into the pitfall of “waiting for the big chunk of time” to complete projects, such as getting my finances balanced. Financial work requires me to operate out of my least preferred abilities so it is challenging for me. I waited 2 years until now to do this! and, of course in the meantime, some $$$ has slipped through the cracks.
    However, I am now enjoying immensely the opportunity to focus, understand, and appreciate what I am doing. It has surprised me how much energy I have for this work, and how much enjoyment and satisfaction I have gotten from this work, which was so tedious, odious, and difficult for me previously.
    I struggle a little to keep a balance with other activities to remain in positive state of mind. But this too has been a good exercise in evaluating the importance of activities which I have thought were “essential”previously and are not at this time. This has been an exciting period of time of learning and “noticing” for me!!
    Of course, I am vowed to do a little each week in the future so it is not “all or nothing”.

    • Anna, Thank you! I have loved “getting my financial house in order” lately and it sounds like you are on the same course. I’m on board with you on the doing a little each week. Every Monday I do some or a lot of bookkeeping work and it feels really good.

  6. Heather says:

    Dear Jenna,
    I have so enjoyed learning from your journey over the years–and watching you grow and change and blossom, emerging in new and beautiful ways…and discovering more and more of your creative self. (Wow, it really has been like witnessing a butterfly emerge and spread her lovely wings!) I confess I have sometimes wondered, though, about the push toward “bigness,” as that hasn’t quite resonated with me…and I’ve wondered if everyone is truly called to do something “big” in the world? If one doesn’t feel that inspiration, do you believe that means the dreams are merely suppressed or not articulated–or one is just disconnected from them? I think highly sensitive souls, in particular, might struggle with this. I loved your reflections today on enjoying the small moments, enjoying the process, the beautiful subtle moments of life…because I think as we focus on doing even the small things with love and care, perhaps the larger things start to emerge almost organically. It has always been difficult for me to “plan” my future or life…but then I’ve wondered at times if that is a flaw…or if my life truly is meant to be more about a way of being than about accomplishing something big in the world.
    Your reflections seem to point to balance–having the best of both worlds, living and enjoying each moment while also dreaming and allowing and walking toward a bigger expression of one’s self…which is beautiful.
    You seem to have shifted into a whole new delightful creative chapter in your life….I love that. It shows too that you never know what might unfold in the future if you truly follow moment by moment where your heart leads!

    • Heather, I love your question about “bigness.” I’ve been mulling it over since you posted it. My sense is that everyone has some kind of dream that is “big” FOR THEM. Maybe it’s not the same kind of big as it is for me, but I suspect everyone has a dream about what they want their life to look like, how they want to be in the world, or what they want to do.

      At the same time, it seems like I often attract people to me who want to make a big DIFFERENCE in the world, by making it a better place, helping people in a powerful way, or getting their own work out into the world with a wide-reaching impact, so I think that’s where some of my language around “big” comes in.

      For me the ability to do something “big” is directly tied to the piece about how I am being in the world.

      And planning is an illusion to some degree, but it often gets us started. And then the divine can step in and guide us further. :)

      Thank you for your note about my creative emergence. Love that.

  7. Love it! I am insanely envious of a front porch from which to do calls. I have a fabulous patio but am on a fairly busy street and the traffic noise disturbs the clients.

    Ritualized routines and systems have helped me fully experience the joy that pops up in the sidewalk cracks. Also, it allowed me to run have tea & watch Sesame Street with my 3yr old nephew on Monday when he called.

    Love the new look of the newsletter btw – clean & simple!

    • Your systems have helped me make much of what I’ve talked about in this blog post even possible, Miriam, and I’m grateful!

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