Are you out of breath?
Have you had the feeling of being behind once you wake up? You’ve got the to-do list of all to accomplish, and agendas to complete, a home to clean, and activities to attend. Your little ones have schedules and activities and you’re the driver.
Life has become a frenzied pace of busy activities after another squished within other activities smashed between doing everyday life. There’s not much breathing room. And honestly, it’s not going to slow down. So we race and run and race and run and go to bed with our feet hanging over the side of the bed exhausted hoping to catch a few hours of sleep until we start again.
Ever felt that way?
I know I have – all too often. I’ve looked at my calendar hanging on the wall in the kitchen and I’ll get that feeling of overwhelm when I just glance at it and I’ll wish that I had some space built within my life. Then I sigh.
So now, especially in the summer, I’ve forced myself and our family to be intentional with our time and have decided to reclaim a bit of freedom in our schedule. I only have a finite number of summers to spend with my kids and I want to spend it with them. With them – not with racing them everywhere every week – with them laughing, playing games, working by each other, just being still and in the same home doing life.
Can I encourage you to slow down. Just for a bit? A week? A day?
Build in white space on your schedule, especially now that it’s summer. Work in days that are intentionally clear of activities outside the home. I remember as a child having those lazy days of summer that would lead to the inevitable I’m bored cries which would lead to us figuring out what we wanted to do. Do we give ourselves, or our children, those moments in life where they reach the I’m bored state which then lets them begin to explore options and exercise creativity? Especially here in the summer? Or have we let our children’s lives become a constant blur of scheduled activities?
I feel like summer has, in some ways, become as overscheduled and such a flurry of activity that we’ve lost the ability to sit and to be comfortable in the still and the I’m bored moments of life.
It is good to sit.
All the activities, the camps, the vbs, the classes are good, really. In moderation. I keep thinking about what I’m teaching my children – am I teaching them to adopt a lifestyle at a pace that will make them exhausted into adulthood? That is in a way what our society embraces – be busy, do this, do that, don’t sit still, be productive, always moving. Activity is good, know that, but teaching them, allowing ourselves to have space is just as essential.
We need white space on our calendars.
We need those days built into our lives where there is no agenda. In my home, I call them breathing days – days where I’m not a slave to the clock, or an activity, and where I can be intentional and can feel good about sitting on the deck and reading book after book to my preschoolers without worrying that I’m late.
It must be intentional. It must be this way as we could fill our schedules to the brim with good activity after great activity after needed activity with everyday.
Carve out that breathing space. Grab your calendar and for the rest of the summer carve out at least a day a week of breathing space. Maybe you have a camp one week that you’ll be driving to – add a day another week. Just give yourself room to rest. Fall is right around the corner, and with that comes the ramping up of activities. Now, here in July, is the perfect time to give yourself the grace to breathe.
Let the summer get to be summer.
linking with my dear friend, Carissa.
Thank you for this reminder. I was at a homeschool conference a few weeks ago, and one of the speakers there also mentioned to schedule in some “white space” on our calendars. I had not heard of that before, but it is changing our family for the better.
This is so timely as we have been debating whether or not to pony up the cash for the kids to do some extracurricular activities this summer and possibly even summer camp. Maybe we need to consider more than just financial cost…
Thank you for this encouragement! 🙂 so true. I have things I want to accomplish this summer and my list can be overwhelming, but I want to ‘reclaim these summer days’ and make the most of them. I want to enjoy time with my family as well as working on the things I have planned to do. Making sure I have some free days will be helpful in keeping me balanced.
I hope you have a blessed day!
I love this post (and the pictures!). It seems like this summer is passing us by so quickly. My son will turn 2 in August and this is the perfect time to sit back and enjoy the wonders of summertime. Thank you for reminding me.
I SO agree! I am struggling with time management and beating myself up for it. Thanks for the toughtful post!
I love this “stop and smell the roses” series! It is so important to relax and not feel so rushed. I was recently thinking about the over scheduling that our kids have. I remember being bored as a kid and that is when I was the most creative. I tend to want my daughter to have activities so she doesn’t get bored, but that may actually be harming her creativity and the idea that you can just sit and relax. I know that is my favorite thing, just sitting reading a book or writing for the fun of it. But I feel like I’m being unproductive during those times. It’s time to change that thinking. Those moments of quiet are just as important as all the chores and projects we have to get done. It is an important thing to remember for ourselves and our kids.
We have a boat and take it out right before sunset. Last night hubs said, “I’m scared we’re going to leave here and wonder why we didn’t do this more. The unplugging and slowing down”.
It was a beautiful golden sunset we all enjoyed — I hope to be more intentional with them!