This question has become a focus and a goal for me as I begin 2023. In last week’s blog, this was the first of four questions I am encouraging all of us to ask as we begin the new year. For some of us, this is an easier question than others. If you are particularly good at boundary setting and saying “no” is relatively easy for you, then you probably already know the answer(s) to this question. However, if you tend to struggle with people-pleasing, being overloaded and struggling with which “yes” is best, then this question will be particularly important for you. Join me this week as I highlight three next steps to take in determining what is yours to own.
Consider your “desire zone.”
This concept has really transformed the way I think about what I need to be doing. I first learned about it from Michael Hyatt in his book, Free to Focus and have continued to reflect on what this means and how we can apply it to all areas of my life. The overall idea is to consider which tasks and activities you both enjoy doing and are good at doing. These are your “desire zone” activities. As you begin the new year, now is a great time to review and consider what is (and is not) included in your desire zone. This is different for everyone and I encourage you to do an honest assessment of what you really enjoy doing and are good at doing. This will help you begin to answer what is yours to own. One of the areas that I have struggled with is taking on things I am good at doing but do not enjoy doing. Other times, I see that other people do not really want to do certain tasks, and since I am able to do them, I agree to do them in order to be helpful. While this may be temporarily helpful for them, I become distracted by things that are not mine to own! If you can relate to this scenario, join me in identifying your desire zone activities and recognizing what is yours to own.
Recognize your season.
Depending upon where you are in your life, your career, your family and your community, you may have different areas to “own” than you would in other seasons. Although I have always loved remembering birthdays, sending cards and gifts, talking with friends and family daily, and traveling all over the world, my current season does not align with these in the same way as before I was married and had children. Although I still enjoy these areas and would consider them part of my desire zone, they are not currently mine to own in the same way. I have the gift and opportunity to be a wife and a mother right now which adjusts what is currently mine to own. I can still remember birthdays and stay connected but not in the same way with the same time commitment. One of the easiest ways for me to become overwhelmed is for me to attempt to live in both seasons at the same time and try to keep owning all of it. I encourage you to join me in reflecting on your current season so that you can identify what is yours to own right now.
Pause before committing.
Another very important step is to pause before committing to anything new. When I am in a meeting and someone brings up what needs to be done, my first instinct is to raise my hand or volunteer to do it. When this happens, I am usually owning more than what is mine to own, then I become overwhelmed and out of rhythm. Additionally, I have a difficult time actually following through with what I have already committed to doing and what is truly mine to own. You may also need to reflect upon your existing commitments. Are these areas you need to own? Are there opportunities for you to connect others who may be a better fit to owning them? While it is important to follow-through with what you said you would do, you may also find that there are others who can do some of these activities and it fits well within their desire zone and season of life. Join me this year in practicing my “pause” before committing so that I can really assess what is mine to own – and what is not mine to own!
So what about you? What are some areas that are clearly yours to own? Are there other areas that you are doing that are not yours to own right now?
If you would like more support in this year to find balance, rhythm and escape the overwhelm, check out my Masterclass recording, Escape the Overwhelm.