In my approach to living with a more grace-filled approach towards my life this year, both through my goals and my routine, it means that I have been saying no to a lot of things… some good and some not necessarily bad, just not good for me during this season.
I knew that having my 3rd baby in under four years would change the way I kept pace but I had kind of forgotten just how much time and energy they took up.
I had gotten used to having a set schedule with my older two.
- I knew when they took their daily two-hour nap (both at the same time) I would have a huge chunk of time to work during the day.
- I knew when they both went to bed around 7:30, I would have another few hours of time to work and relax.
- And I knew when they went to spend the day with grandma, I would have an entire day to get things done.
Well, those days are temporally gone, there will be times soon enough when I will have some of that “free” time back but for now, I am contently spending most of my time holding, cuddling, snuggling or feeding my sweet little one.
I have been resting, and it almost sounds crazy to say this, but over the last few weeks I have gotten more sleep than I have for a very long time.
More sleep with a newborn?
Oh yes I have and I feel so refreshed, I almost feel guilty 😉
Yes, my 2-month-old still wakes up at night for feedings.
Yes, my 4 and 2-year-old still wake up bright eyed and bushy tail, ready to start the day somewhere between 6:30 and 8:00 every morning. And on a few occasions, one of them will be up at least once in the middle of the night.
No, I’m not getting a whole lot of sleep, although Jack is starting to go for longer stretches at night.
So how am I able to feel rested and refreshed during this season of a newborn, toddler and a preschooler?
By saying NO to the unimportant.
I said NO to creating detailed goals at the start of the year that I knew I probably wouldn’t be able to accomplish.
I am saying NO to trying to create an ideal routine to help me try and get more accomplished during the day.
I have also said NO to certain aspects of blogging over the past few months.
Collecting no’s has allowed me to find rest, to be at peace as to where I am in life and it has helped remove all of the clutter from my life that simply just isn’t important to me right now.
I’m the type of person who doesn’t have a problem telling people no to things, even though I’m somewhat of a people pleaser. I know my limits and my boundaries. I know that I get frazzled and disorganized when I have too much on my plate.
I don’t feel bad about saying no either because I believe that when we say no to something, we are actually saying yes to something better, something that matters.
So what does this look like for me?
I’m setting small, mini-goals each month and I don’t stress out if they don’t get accomplished, I just move them to the next month and cross them off when they are completed.
I’ve created some simple routines each day to help provide a little bit of structure but leave room for grace when the day is filled with crying and temper tantrums and all I want to do is lie on the couch snuggling up with my babies.
I make a short and sweet list of things to do every day, focusing on what NEEDS to get done… you know the laundry, cooking food for my people and simple housekeeping tasks.
I’m listening to my body and resting when it feels tired which might mean that I take a nap when the kids do or watch an episode of one of my favorite TV shows when I need a mental break instead of feeling like I should be doing something more worthwhile.
I’m putting some aspects of blogging and writing on the back burner for a while. Sure I will still be here with new posts every week but I’m not pushing myself to type out something just for the sake of having a new post ready for you to read each day.
I’ve said NO to some popular features here on the blog, mainly the Book Notes monthly link up and the Bible to Brain to Heart Scripture Memory Challenge. Both are good but both took a whole lot of time each month to prepare and I just need to put that energy elsewhere. Plus since I have discovered the She Reads Truth community Bible studies, each study has built in memory work. So instead of trying to fry my brain with more memory work, I’m memorizing what they are memorizing.
Saying no to those areas in my life has freed me up to not only rest more but to also enjoy this season with my family. I know my little ones won’t be little for much longer so I want to soak up as much during this time as I can.
Saying NO to some things truly helps to say YES to the most important things. And for now, rest, grace and my family are where I am pouring most of my focus onto.
What are you saying NO to today that is freeing you up to say YES to something better?
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