This is one of the most essential pieces of writing I've done for the evolution of this website & my life. I am no longer cozy at home every day, with complete autonomy over my daily flow. And because I am dedicated to living and writing authentically and in full exposure, this site must reflect the change in our lifestyle.
I haven't written anything in months, not because I had nothing to say but because I've been wrestling with internal questions. The most dominant question being:
Is it possible to slow down and find Rest during busy and laborious seasons. And if so, what does it look and feel like?
In the past, I've mentioned how I would strip my schedule down to a bare minimum to achieve a slower pace. This approach has helped me maintain emotional and mental stability. I've learned to recognize signs of stress and eliminate activities and commitments until I reach a balance. This process involves deep prayer and reflection on what's essential.
This year, I've been faced with stressors that I quit, but even after quitting, I still felt no more balanced. Sometimes I wanted to give up on a significant responsibility or role, but my soul and spirit wouldn't let me. And so, without elimination working, I pushed myself to move faster than my body was comfortable with, ate without thinking, and felt beyond exhausted by the end of the day. However, I also devoted time to reading, listening, and praying to figure out what to do because I knew this pace was unsustainable.
Yes, it is possible to find Rest and slowness during busy and laborious periods. And it is my life's mission, alongside my visionary partner and supportive community, to establish a sustainable business, embrace a slower pace of life, homeschool our children while prioritizing Rest and wonder, and nurture a fulfilling romantic life.
If you're curious about how I got to my conclusion, it's below.
Deepening: Deepening my understanding of grace. Pastor Roy Barrett did a series on grace, emphasizing the importance of grace in our daily lives to fulfill our purpose. When we obey God's calling, bask in His goodness, and rest in His sovereignty, we can trust in His control and live the fulfilling life we were meant to have.
Regrounding: I'm exploring Rest through books, podcasts, articles, and conversations. I'm creating daily rhythms (breathing in and breathing out) while learning from various experts (business owners, Napministry, homeschooling mothers, psychologists, and teachers). I've also revisited my past writings on the topic.
Seeking Council: I needed to discuss openly with my loved ones and gain their insights regarding my thoughts and feelings. Coming from a family of entrepreneurs (including my great-grandfather, grandfather, father, uncles, brothers, and cousins), I found it helpful to ask about their experiences and understand the subtleties involved.
Stepping Away & Into: I recently traveled to Jamaica with my entire family, and it was a life-changing experience. Being immersed in the primary culture that inspired S&P was mind-blowing. I spent my days technology-free, talking to family, swimming in the water, taking long morning walks, reflecting, and spending moments in solitude and prayer. Witnessing a culture that values slow living, community, and a relaxed atmosphere was incredibly healing.
Practicing: Recently, I heard a fascinating lecture on the link between chronic stress, terminal illness, and personality types that lead to premature death. The speaker explained that individuals who prioritize others' needs over their own are at a heightened risk. The doctor even confirmed the adage that "the good die young." These people tend to suppress their anger and authenticity to fulfill others' expectations, ultimately causing harm to themselves. As a business owner, I've also noticed this tendency within myself. Suppressing my true feelings has become a common occurrence.
Maintaining authenticity and respecting boundaries is crucial in both personal and professional life. Though conflicts may arise, it is vital to communicate firmly and directly - saying "no" when needed. People-pleasing and attachment fears are opponents of a sustainable and mentally healthy routine. In a community, we should rely on grace within our conversations, intentions, and daily routine and take breaks whenever necessary. It is critical to acknowledge that everyone (including ourselves) has limitations. To lead a life full of grace, authenticity, and truth - taking time away for an internal welfare check (such as vacations, holidays, Sabbaths, and siestas) is crucial. For me, these breaks also mean resisting the need for an urgent response or reaction.
This is a writing series; there are so many elements to share and a depth that one article cannot capture. I look forward to sharing my story, resources, (s)heroes, and some delicious discoveries along the way.