When you’re feeling particularly overwhelmed, stressed out, or overburdened, try this:

Look at the entirety of your calendar–your family obligations (both immediate and extended), your household chores, your teaching units, and  even your “fun” activities

And then subtract just one thing.

Just take it out.

Remove it.

Subtract it from the equation.

Not five things or twelve things.

Just one thing.

It might be a book club you no longer wish to be a part of. A hobby you’ve lost interest in.  The committee you felt coerced to be on. The church event you never really liked in the first place. Whatever. 

Just stop. Say no.  Respect your time and space. And because your needs matter, insist that others respect them, too.

And when you remove that thing, what do you do with the space you’ve created? 

You can fill it with something you’re passionate about or that fulfills you.  You can reflect on what you DO and DO NOT wish to do in your life. You can even use it to do a whole lot of nothing.  And that’s okay.

What you fill it with, OR WHETHER YOU FILL IT, is up to you.

The absence of that “just one thing” might possibly give you perhaps the smallest portion of breathing room you need in order to see things more clearly, create some space in your life, and see what’s really important. TZT