Disclaimer: I am not here to come for anyone’s lifestyle. And I’m definitely not here to offend anyone who may not agree with what I am saying here. But I also have a feeling that some of these things need to be said, and I don’t think this is the last time I’ll be talking about this subject. So, haters gonna hate.
I have an unpopular opinion. It has been rattling around in the back of my mind for weeks now… approximately the same time a certain book (which will go unnamed but it has to do with washing your face. Subtle enough?) came into my possession. I started reading (well, listening) to it in the car, and I was immediately struck with this thought.
“I am so sick of personal development books”.
It isn’t about the author. It’s not even really about the book’s content. Honestly, the book itself is fine. The same things could be said about x number of other woman-targeted self-development, “be your best self” books.
It’s just that I’ve heard it before. I’ve read it before. I’ve been told it before. And I GET IT. It’s okay to not be like the other moms. It’s okay to talk about things like sex in the context of Christianity. It’s okay to be your own person and live your own life.
I’m not here to bash that one book. But I’m here to talk to a group of women that I believe exists. And I think this group of women is feeling really out casted right now. Because the way culture is going tells us that it’s okay to not have it all together (as long as you’re working on getting it together). And it’s totally fine to not be your kid’s classroom mom (but only because you have a busy career you’re pursuing instead). And it’s definitely okay to be in a messy bun and Pjs when your husband gets home (but only because you have been busy all day cleaning baseboards and folding endless loads of laundry and you’re just so selfless you haven’t had a chance to shower). Basically, it’s okay to not be okay… but like, you need to have a very clear plan of how you will someday be okay, and that needs to be tracked, color coded, and shared with your 5 accountability partners.
So… what about the rest of us? What about those of us who don’t want to be classroom mom because we just, don’t want to? What about those of us who don’t have it together because our season of life doesn’t look like having it together, and we aren’t really sure when we will have it “together” so stop asking us? What if we are still in our PJs when our husband gets home because Pjs are effin’ comfortable, Karen, and I don’t need another explanation.
My calendar is not planned out by the half hour. My 5-year plan includes a lot of “maybes” and “it would be cool ifs”. My dreams are big and lofty and I don’t have a goal poster to chart my progress.
But just because I don’t have my shit together, doesn’t mean I don’t have my shit together. No, my kindle isn’t chock full of parenting and self-help books. No, I don’t do yoga to try to find my higher self. Yes, I am cool with not knowing exactly where I’ll be in a year. Being “bone weary” doesn’t sound like an accomplishment to me. It sounds like a sentence. And working myself to my maximum potential 24/7, 365 is not my idea of living a full and fulfilling life.
Instead, I live my life based on God’s calendar. I don’t write my plans in ink, because I know at any moment God might say “yeah something’s come up”. My dreams are big and lofty because God delivered them to me that way, and I know they will come to fruition when He says they should. I can’t track God’s plan for my life on a poster or with an oversized thermometer. My measure of success changes with every season. And when I think about what I want to be remembered by, it has less to do with what I did and more to do with who I was.
If you are reading this and thinking “she’s just saying this because she’s always been a dandelion puff”, well- ACTUALLY. I spent 3 years in the heart of personal development and “be your best self” land. I lived and breathed self-help books. I listened to inspirational podcasts in my damn sleep and I even color coded my freakin’ calendar. I scheduled the shit out of my day. And I saw a lot of women thrive that way. And that was awesome.
But it didn’t work for me. In fact, it made my soul weary. It made me feel like I wasn’t good enough. Like my goals weren’t big enough. Like the second I told someone “I’m okay just staying where I am”, they would look at me and say “she’s a quitter”. And in fact, when I left that world, that’s what a lot of people said. That’s okay. They aren’t dandelion puffs. We can’t all be this way (that would be a shit show).
But there are more of us out there. More women who are reading these books about maximizing your potential and adding hours to the day and waking up EARLIER to do MORE, and veiling it behind words like “powerhouse” and “#bossbabe”. As if the only way to be a #bossbabe is to go to bed exhausted every night. To take yourself to 0 at the end of every day.
But I want you to know- Girl, it’s okay if you don’t “wash your face” (and I mean that figuratively, because I am very much about that skincare life). It’s okay if right now you just aren’t sure where you’re going. Or if you’re perfectly fine just being you. You don’t have to buy every self-help book just because all the other women are buying it. You don’t have to constantly want to be better than you were yesterday, but not as good as you’ll be tomorrow. You are you. And there are more of you (us) out there, living life one day at a time and waiting for the wind to take us on our next adventure. We are important too. We are not weeds, we are wildflowers and we make the world more fun.
God is speaking to me about all this, and as He does, I want to share it with you. I don’t have any final thoughts or big ideas to wrap this all up with… I am just sharing my heart, wondering if other women are feeling the way I am.
More to come on this, friends.