Wednesday, 1 June 2016

jumping off the hamster wheel





I find it really difficult to say no to people. I like to be helpful and I like to be busy. Together, these two qualities don't make for a gentle pace of life, which I sometimes crave. Over the past three years, I have become more and more involved in the community and at both schools. I am treasurer in the PTA in one school, an ordinary member of the parent council in the other school, I have been a committee member in the community club. I started this blog.... As if this community involvement was not enough, I joined a book group, continued my German knit group and started taking various sewing classes. I also went back to work. At the beginning of this year I resumed various sports activities, which I had given up over the past two years due to aches and pains. I have a busy social life, too.

Totally bonkers, eh? Some of the things I was happy to do previously turned into chores. As life got more and more out of control I realised that I just had to give up commitments and reorganise other activities if I wanted to maintain a degree of sanity and have some quality time with the kids. Luckily I see Richard at work :-)

I have made a good start. It was so difficult to say no, I am not doing this anymore but I have managed without loosing any sleep over it. I have said no to the community club committee. I have given up the book group and the parent council. I do all my exercise during my lunch hour. I delegate more housework to the older kids (my list of what to do is going down a treat - not).

Already, I feel more in control, the hamster wheel is turning more slowly. I have of course not spent every waking moment worrying about all my commitments and each on its own didn't take up that much time but my mind feels more rested because I can focus on fewer now. Already I have more time for things that I really enjoy. I started reading a new book with James and Alistair, something I haven't done in a while. I have more energy to deal the issues young adulthood brings (I do think it is an awfully tricky transition. I can go on a beaver and cub scout trip with James and Alistair without thinking I should be doing something else. I can resume my yoga classes, which I have given up years ago but missed ever since and I can continue to improve my clothes sewing skills.

No doubt the hamster wheel will speed up again but for now, all is good. To add to my general upbeat mood, the weather in Glasgow is STILL glorious! This must be the longest spell of dry and warm weather we've had in at least a year and I am grateful for every minute it continues. Wishing you a happy Wednesday. x

17 comments:

  1. Good for you! Sometimes it's hard to say no. When we first retired people kept trying to rope us into serving on committees and other such stuff because we were no longer working. We said no frequently and it felt so good.

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  2. Glad to hear that you're gaining control of the activities. It's so easy to become overwhelmed with them, isn't it? Children's activities alone keep me hopping and that doesn't include any of the 'extra' things I want to do. Lucky you for having wonderful weather. Um, my tulips just bloomed!?!

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  3. Say no is incredibly hard. Well done you for being able to stand up and say it, I am glad life is all the better for it. Long may it last. A happy Wednesday to you too!

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  4. I have had to learn to say no lately too, I was under so much pressure it was starting to make me feel ill. You are lucky with the weather, it has been rain, rain and more rain here, a real storm.

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  5. Isn't it good when you start to feel in control again. I find the process can often yo yo. You do well for a while and then another rerouting happens. Sunshine definitely helps the process. Long may it last :) B X

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  6. When I was much *younger with a growing family, my husband made me practice the word "no", before going to an activity. It seems quite funny now, I was exactly where you are today....wish I was in Glasgow to enjoy the weather !

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  7. Good for you Christina, I hope you're enjoying your activities now that you feel more in control. I wouldn't mind some of that fine Glasgow weather - it's terrible down here in Kent! Enjoy the rest of your week. Jane xx

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  8. Well done. We often find ourselves with lots of commitments which then start to overwhelm xx

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  9. Balance is very important, but also very difficult to achieve. It sounds like you are well on your way to achieving it. Well, at least as much as a busy mom of four children is ever able to!

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  10. I am a guinea pig, not a hamster. We don't do wheels, just five minutes of intense movement and popcorning every once in a while. And illness lays us low, like seriously. So we guinea pigs keep well and say no a lot.

    Well done on dropping a few chores; there is nothing worse than a pleasure that becomes a pain. Keep balanced x

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  11. Well done... I know how hard it is because I am much the same. Take on far too much and think I can do more than I actually can!

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  12. I think we are all nodding and recognising those same ties and commitments. I struggle a lot to say no, but have found it a lot easier since returning to work. Saying no to work though, that's a lot harder. Well done for pulling back and giving some of those things up. It's amazing the difference it makes! xx

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  13. I understand completely with what you are saying. Our natures find it hard to say no but sometimes we need to. Especially with your busy schedule of family, children, and work, I'm sure it's extremely hard for you to find extra time. Recently, I said no to a request from my dear brother. I felt bad but at the same time all turned out well. Thank you too for the kind words you left on my blog post. It warmed my heart. Have a wonderful weekend and don't work too hard :) hugs, Pat

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  14. There's a fine balance between being happy-busy and feeling overwhelmed. I'm glad you have adjusted your balance! Have a super weekend, Christina xx

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  15. sometimes we just need to prioritise our commitments, and we can then do them better if we're not overstretched and create a happy balance too x

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  16. Catching up with all my blog reading Christina, somthis is a very late comment, but I agree wholeheartedly with you. It is hard to say 'no' but sometimes life becomes far too overcrowded, amd the stress of that is horrible. My mum, a very wise woman, once said to me, when I was agonising over having to say no to something-or-other 'Don't burden yourself with unnescesary commitments' and it is a piece of advice I have taken to heart and think of often, when I am asked to do something. I used to be highly involved in village life, I am now less so, amd happier for it X

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Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I love to hear from you, I really do. I sometimes reply by email but I am not all that reliable... Christina xx