I had a coaching session last night and was talking about how my life has picked up recently and how on edge the busyness is making me feel. I know, I know, I must sound like a cracked record – this issue is both a source of great contentment (having quality time with good friends) and the bane of my life as I find myself stretched past my capacity and living out of depleted energy levels.
I don’t want to live a depleted life, I want to thrive and in the session, I identified what I need to thrive in life –
- 1 weekend a month with no plans
- Two times during the week where I can have quiet time, reflecting by writing to you, dear one, on this blog or spending time with my head in a good book
- Not having social plans on weekdays when I’ve got a busy weekend coming up
- Not having people to stay during the week
So I know I’ve got a few things to do to make sure my life is able to thrive – cancelling some plans I’ve got in the week days, safeguarding my free weekends and leaving work early once a week to make space for quiet time.
In the coaching session, I shared how tough it had been for me to recently express my tiredness and distress to my husband and to hear his response – “I don’t understand why you feel this way“. In that moment of hearing his words, I felt truly alone and, if I’m honest, a bit judged by him for not being able to cope, for struggling to have enough energy to enjoy all my plans, for not being an extrovert like him.
I’m not sharing this to vent my hurt at him in a passive aggressive way. I think Gregg was just expressing himself and is unable to stand in my shoes or understand where I’m coming from. Because he’s different to me in mostly every way, and that’s part of what makes our relationship work. But it can also cause conflict and misunderstanding.
And this is where the shift came for me (all thanks to the expert coaching I received from Helen). I suddenly realised that I don’t need him to understand why I feel the way I do.
I just need him to respect me and respect my boundaries.
And I suddenly felt excited by the prospect of living this way; of shifting from needing to feel understood to needing to feel respected.
I’m not yet sure of how I’m going to assert myself with this and I’m aware that it may not be a piece of cake to stand up and demand respect, but I’m excited to see where this new approach will take me.