Oola Challenge Day 14: Focus

Here’s an excerpt from the Oola Guys:

Challenge 14: Narrow your focus to fast-track your progress.

One of the most beautiful things about life is that we get to be so many things to so many people. We’re parents, children, mentors, friends, teammates, classmates, and colleagues. We’re constantly taking care of all the people and responsibilities we have in our lives. It’s easy to get caught up in all these labels and forget who we are and what makes us unique. Sometimes we even find ourselves reigning in our energy a little as we hold back things we want to say and doubt ourselves.

Today’s #OolaYLChallenge is to take 30 minutes and do something for your soul. Set aside the requests, demands, stresses, and deadlines and take the time to focus on yourself. Do something that allows you to be yourself, express yourself, and have faith in yourself.

Oh man. I feel like I’ve spent years of my life working on this post. Serious.

I definitely get caught up in all the roles and responsibilities in my life- mom, wife, Soldier, etc. Sometimes I wonder what happened to Sherri. My besties have always been there to remind me and to make me feel needed and appreciated just for being me. But, time, space (and kids if we’re being honest) have made our reunion opportunities few and far between 😭

For the last three years, the Inspired Living team (my Oily crew) has helped fill a void in my life….a need to be with other women pursuing something I’m passion about, sharing laughs, sharing in celebrations and losses and just enjoying some good ole girl talk now and then. But, as my team has grown (by leaps and bounds) this year, some of my loneliness has crept back in. I haven’t been able to find my new “fit” as we’ve grown and in some ways my Oily world has shifted such that it’s now another “hat” that I wear. It’s one of those things that is both wondrous to behold (dreams becoming realities, new leaders taking off on their own) and a little sad (they don’t need me in the same way they used to).

Put the changes in my oily world together with all the personal (overwhelming clutter) and professional (new duty position) stress in my life over the last 2-3 months and well…it’s clear that my focus is not where it needs to be because everything is suffering from personal relationships (where I didn’t put my best foot forward), to motherhood (lack of patience and enjoyment), to marriage (lack of connection and real quality time)  and now it’s evident in my health…

Apparently, I have a lazy eye but my body/brain have always done such a masterful job of compensating that it’s been undetectable. But, at this year’s physical it was glaring and severe. Based on the amount of deterioration in the last year, the flight surgeon says I’m suffering from chronic fatigue and if I don’t do something about it soon…I’m gonna go blind. For real. My brain is starting to shut down those processes that aren’t necessary for function…and my double vision is one of them. 🙁

Whoa. Talk about a wake up call, huh? So, as I approach my 40th birthday, I’m spending a lot of time re-examining how I spend my time and energy. Hence…my renewed vigor towards decluttering my life (mentally and physically).

It’s an inch a visit but the work with my professional organizer, Brogan, is really helping. Her presence forces me to FOCUS on the task at hand. Seeing progress is motivational and I can finally see a light at the end of that tunnel…no matter how faint. By our two year anniversary in this house…I will finally be settled in 😂 It will probably be just in time for the next Army move but with a lighter load. So, I can be happy with that.

And, on the weekends, I am doing better about “sleeping when the baby sleeps” because…everything else can wait. Mama can’t anymore. So, some things aren’t getting done- around the house, in my biz and on the job- but I’m enjoying time with my kids and husband. Balance is an illusion…we are really all just that guy at the circus with a bunch of plates spinning on sticks (thanks to the Oola Guys for this analogy….such an eye opener). “Balance” is learning where to focus when one of the plates starts to wobble and reprioritizing your energy (FOCUS) to get it back in rhythm with the rest.

I don’t know if all of this will save me from eye surgery. But, I can honestly say…I feel poised to make the next 40 years even more amazing than the first because I’m learning to embrace myself (flaws and all), the present (inspite of the past and despite the future) and to accept/respect that spending time on yourself isn’t selfish. Self-care recharges the soul. And, when I’m full up…I have a lot more to give ❤️

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