I was getting through the day. I was making ends meet. I worked, paid the bills, went to bed – and woke up to do it all over again.
I was going through the motions. I was getting by.
Was I missing out on meaningful life experiences – partly because I was never truly ‘present’? Yes.
Was I content and happy with where I was in life, as well as with the amount of control and freedom I felt I had? Not especially.
Did I wake up energized, grateful, and excited for the day ahead? Rarely.
Did I think this was a normal way to live life? At the time, I did.
And I didn’t give much thought to the idea that there was something I could do about it.
I had reached a point where I was no longer present and engaged with my day. I wasn’t satisfied with where I was in life. I would wake up and try to just ‘make it through another day’ without even thinking that this is not how life should be lived.
I got there gradually and wasn’t aware of how I was dealing with it.
Over time, however, I realized my way of ‘dealing with it’ was to not deal with it.
I would pick up my phone and scroll, losing hours of time throughout the week, and not really thinking twice about it.
I would turn on the current series I was binging, and a few hours later find I was 4-5 episodes deep.
I was practicing escapism.
I was looking for ways to zone out, ways to distract myself – as opposed to waking up and living the life in front of me.
And not just living my life, but becoming intentional about creating a life I didn’t feel a need to escape from! A life where I was excited for each new day, where I felt a sense of purpose and direction.
To make this happen, there were 5 specific changes that made all the difference…
1. I Stopped Mindlessly Consuming
This included the mindless consumption of media, news, and entertainment, as well as mindless shopping and eating habits.
I no longer shop without a purpose, or for things I don’t really need. I stopped mindless scrolling on my phone, and set time limits on specific ‘problem’ apps.
I started replacing these mindless habits with things like journaling, reading, and meal planning. I started pursuing creative hobbies and establishing healthy routines.
I began to be more intentional with my time, awareness, and attention.
I began waking up.
2. I Stopped Living on Auto-Pilot
I stopped just ‘going through the motions’ and started being mindful throughout my day.
I started to notice the little moments that made up my life. Rather than rushing onto the next thing, I took a moment to slow down and appreciate what the present moment held.
I began to bring awareness to even the smallest things. Things such as pouring my coffee, being observant during my morning commute, truly tasting each bite of food, and even while tying my shoes!
I slowed down, and life slowed down around me. I no longer blinked and the day was over.
I switched off ‘auto-pilot’, and got into the driver’s seat.
3. I Started Setting Priorities
I began to see what truly matters in life, and made the time & space for it.
I started appreciating and making time for the people who are important to me.
I started prioritizing the health of my body and mind. I began to make self-care a regular part of my day.
I set aside time to unwind, de-stress, and nourish myself – so I could be my best for myself & for others.
By setting my priorities, I ensured nothing got neglected or pushed aside for the sake of what was urgent.
I realized how much more time I really had, because I made room for it.
4. I Started Planning for the Future
I began to imagine a different life for myself and took on the responsibility of creating it.
I realized my future was up to me. That it was going to be the result of what I do today, and each day, so I started making strides towards the future I desired.
I saw the importance of each daily action adding up and compounding overtime, and because of that realization – each day became more significant.
And when I held onto the vision of my future, my previous ‘escapism’ habits began to look much less appealing.
5. I Began to Focus on Growth
I saw what I wanted for my future, and began to work at becoming the person I needed to be in order to achieve it.
Each day became an opportunity to grow, learn, and improve upon who I was the day before.
I made a commitment to stay in my own lane. I would no longer worry so much about what others around me were doing or thinking.
I would work on staying true to myself, to become my authentic self.
I started getting to know myself, what my natural talents, interests, and skills were – and worked to improve upon them.
I learned to love my uniquness and began to appreciate my personal life journey.
Over time, I stopped looking for ways to ‘check out’ and escape my life situations.
I began to live an intentional life.
About the Author: Krissy enjoys exploring and writing about the joys of minimalism, simple living, mindfulness, and overall life balance. Find her at TastefullyMinimalist.com