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posted by rachel

The month of March has been very unique for me. I have had two incredible opportunities to head out of town with my best girlfriends and SLOW MY ROLL. It's hard to step outside of your normal routine and do something just for yourself. I felt very undeserving and I couldn’t validate the TIME that I would be spending away from my family and all the things on my to-do list that I was leaving behind. My type A personality has trouble letting go of things and giving up my responsibilities to others, and above all, I hate asking for help. I’ll admit that I am a total control freak and I’m a slave to my to-do list. Even with all these feelings looming, I went on both trips and I could not have given myself a greater gift. I came home refreshed with a new realization of the truly incredible people that surround me. There was so much magic in my downtime and I quickly learned that downtime isn’t selfish and it’s not wasteful. It’s essential to our well being.

This modern life we all live leaves little room for downtime. It is a daily occurrence for our chit chat with each other to involve the topic of time. How time is moving too quickly, how fast kids are growing and how there just aren’t enough hours in the day.

In reality, time is unfolding just as it should, but we have packed so much into our day that it seems like we haven't soaked in, or savored one minute of it. We have put this incredible power over our to-do list and we live by the phrase, “time is of the essence”. rush, rush, rush, cram, cram, cram. Make sure we get it ALL done. Being away from my family and having some time to step back I realized that I was wasting a huge chunk of my precious time doing so many things that didn’t do anything to fill my cup. Quality over quantity. I had it all backward with plenty of quantity and not near enough quality. That to-do list will always be there and we can always return to it. Take a second to step back and ask yourself; how much of that list really needs to be done? How much of that list is tied to social pressures that tell us what our time should be made of? I know that our to-do lists will never go away and there are so many things we HAVE to get done during our day. So I wonder if we prioritize that list, work with purpose and presence to achieve our tasks then we might actually be more satisfied with our end product. Instead of doing everything on our list to just a fraction of its potential. And maybe, just maybe, we could have some down time to just breathe.

This week, I had the amazing opportunity to goal set with the beautiful Michelle Dufford of CREATE. She is one of the Beau Collective's most inspiring people who brings so much inspirational light to the barn. As I went into our meeting, I thought that my goals would revolve around a big race that I might sign up for, or continuing my journey to teach fitness classes. Instead, I was truly shocked at the course our conversation took. Turns out, what I need more of in my life is quality time. Quality time with my people, with myself, with my passions. I learned that giving myself the power to say NO to things that don’t really fill my cup gives me the space to let things in that I truly do need. Even though this is not the kind of goal that I had in mind, I think by working on my quality time all the other things that I am striving to do will begin to fall into place. Quality over Quantity can take you a long way and the trickle effect can be powerful.

For the most part, we all start our day off with some kind of routine. We check the boxes and check the clock. Life happens whether we have time for it or not so what can you do to slow it down? I have been told time and time again that a morning routine is KEY to a healthy and productive day. My goal this month is to set my alarm early a few days a week and have my coffee in the beautiful quiet of the morning before the rest of the house wakes up. This time is not to get ahead on that long list of to-dos but rather to just BE. Write something, read something, meditate, sweat it all out.....WHATEVER. Just slow my roll before the day takes off. From the moment our eyes flash open in the morning we are given the very special gift of time and every day we get to decide what we will do with it. The beautiful thing is that we get to start fresh every day working through the kinks and trying to do things better than we did the day before.

Reset your inner clock with joy, relaxation, and the people that fill you up. We should stop rewarding ourselves for how much we have crammed into one day and how many boxes we have checked. Instead, celebrate the pockets of time that we took to slow down and enjoy our life. Time is never wasted, just sometimes unappreciated. It’s ok to leave the list, slow your roll, and fully appreciate all the wonderful things and people that make up your world!