This week’s topic is one that I know is going to resonate with most, if not all of you. Hustling, overextending ourselves, and generally trying to be all things to everyone in our lives all at once is an experience I know so many people are going through, whether you’re a lawyer or not. So, if you’re finding that there’s never enough time no matter how much you get done, you’re not alone.
It may feel like you have too long of a to-do list, that there’s never an end in sight, and that doing less is impossible. We’ve got clients and bosses to accommodate, emails and briefs to write, and that’s just scraping the surface of your work life. We also have family obligations and other commitments in life we want to keep. So, how can we turn around the perpetual exhaustion and depletion we feel in our professional and personal lives?
Join me this week as I offer one strategy that I know will be incredibly transformational for so many of you that I call the Do Less, Be More model. You’ll learn how you can apply this practice to cultivate peace, calm, and confidence in your day-to-day, what doing less and being more means, and what can happen when you stop emphasizing doing so much.
You’re listening to The Joyful Practice for Women Lawyers Podcast episode number 55.
Welcome to The Joyful Practice for Women Lawyers Podcast. I’m your host Paula Price, lawyer turned certified executive coach. This podcast was created to empower women lawyers just like you to create a life and practice you love. Join me every week for a break from the hustle so we can focus on you, what you truly want, and how you can create it.
If you’re over the overwhelm, done with putting out fires, and ready to create a life and practice that brings you more joy, you’re in the right place. Ready for today’s episode? Let’s dive in.
Hello, my friends. Welcome back to the podcast. It’s Paula here. I am delighted to have you. I hope all of you are having a fabulous week. I just wanted to say thank you for joining me for today’s episode.
Today, we’re talking about a topic that I think resonates with so many of you, which is that idea of being busy, of just doing. Whether it’s doing the things that are on your to do list, whether it’s managing a stressful workload, whether it is trying to be all things to all people all at once and finding yourself feeling depleted and exhausted at the end of it and wondering how you can possibly get through what it is that you need to do in a day while possibly even having some time leftover for yourself. If you ever feel like this, then this podcast episode is absolutely for you. I’m excited to share a strategy with you in today’s episode.
Now, before we jump in, I just wanted to highlight a very special listener who reached out to me over the weekend. This listener, her name is Jen. She wrote to me to say this.
She says, “Hi, Paula just dropping a note. I am not a lawyer. In fact, I am so far from it. But I am a small business owner and busy mom of three. I was looking at time scarcity podcast episodes, and your podcast came up in my search. I decided to listen to episode 18, and I am really glad I did. It was super helpful in a very logical way of working through my time scarcity challenges. Just wanted to drop you a note and tell you that I appreciate the helpful content. All the best, Jen.”
I just wanted to give a special shout out to Jen and a big thank you for sending that note. It is so lovely to receive feedback from all of you who listen to the podcast who find that it’s impactful for something that you’re working on. I looked Jen up. She has a wonderful business. She has a company called Belle Box Co., and she sells gift boxes. No, Jen is not sponsoring me to say anything at all. I was just really curious to learn more about her, and her products look beautiful and amazing. Hats off to her for managing a small business and having three young children.
What I loved about Jen’s message is that for so many of us, for so many of us professionals and business owners, we are all facing a number of similar challenges. In that, we are all united. I really love that she listened to the episode. I welcome all listeners, whether you are lawyer or non-lawyer, and I am so grateful that this message resonates, and that I can be of service to you.
So please, if you have found that this podcast is creating an impact for you, I would love to hear from you. It really does feel like the most amazing thing in the world to hear from you. Again, just thank you so much for tuning in. It is such a pleasure to record these episodes for you.
So what I promise for today was something in the nature of do less, be more. I’m going to dive into what that means and how you can apply this as a strategy in your practice going forward. I’m gonna give you three, well, one suggestion. Three ideas on how to implement that. Before I do that, I just wanted to get us situated in what this might look like in your practice.
So as I walk through the examples, I would invite you to think of how this relates to you, how these concepts apply in your practice, because they will look different for everybody. So the first thing is really thinking about what it is that you want.
When you look at your practice, you may be telling yourself things like I wish I had more time, right? How many times has that happened to you where you’ve got your to do list. You’re looking at all the items that you need to check off the list. You’ve got emails to write. You’ve got briefs to write. You’ve got clients to connect with. That’s just your work life. There’s also the non-work life like maybe you’ve got young kids that you’re looking after. You’ve got family obligations. Maybe there’s committees that you’re involved in, volunteer groups that you’re with. There are so many different opportunities and ways in which you may be spending your time.
What you may feel like is that you’re always running from one task to the next without ever really getting on top of, if that is such a thing. Getting on top of that list and feeling like you’ve done it all. Chances are you’re never quite feeling that way, and that list just keeps feeling like it’s growing.
It may be that what you wish you had in your practice was less stress. You may find that your anxiety levels over the course of the day are just keeping you from really enjoying what you’re doing. You may find it distracting. You may find that it’s really hard to get started on projects because you feel anxious about them.
You may send out emails and then spend maybe it’s 20 minutes to write the email, and then one hour to feel anxious about having sent that email. Or you’re dealing with individuals, whether it’s opposing counsel or somebody that you work closely with where that relationship feels strained and stressful.
I mean there’s all these different sources of stress. You may feel like it’s really hard to separate yourself from the stress that you feel in the workplace when you leave the office, whether that’s literally or figuratively if you’re working from home, for example.
What you may also wish for, and this is one that comes up a lot with clients that I work with, is wanting to feel more valued and appreciated. It may be that you are working really hard. You’re putting in long hours. The work you’re doing is challenging, and all you really feel like you want is for somebody to recognize the work you’re doing. A pat on the back, some positive feedback. You may feel like you’re constantly going through the motions and feeling like the work that you’re doing is going unseen and unappreciated. That’s starting to wear you down.
Now for all of you, and I know this for a fact, I know you are all highly accomplished high achieving successful professionals. I know this about you. Yet, you may find that the strategies that you’ve been using to cope with some of these challenges aren’t necessarily giving you the results that you want.
Some of the strategies that you may be using, and these are strategies that I’ve used myself. These are strategies that I’ve seen others use. Is number one, if you find that you’ve got this endless to do list, you may find that you simply work harder. That you hustle faster to get through your lists. That you extend your workday so that you have more time to chip away at the items that you think you need to do.
If it’s stress that you’re trying to manage, then you may find yourself troubleshooting. You may look out for every single possible scenario that could ever arise on your files or in your relationships or in your practice or at home or wherever it is. You may find that you’re getting so exhausted trying to plan for, prepare for, identify all these foreseeable risks that you end up burning yourself out and sometimes missing the very thing that is right in front of you. If you can relate to that, you are not alone.
Another way that you might be trying to cope is by overextending yourself to please those people around you. For anybody who self identifies as a people pleaser, this may be something that you resonate with. You may have a difficult boss that you’re working with. So you find that you’re turning cartwheels to talk to them at exactly the right time, to frame every question in exactly the right way, to foresee, again, every obstacle or challenge that you may have in that conversation.
It may be clients where you’re bending yourself into a pretzel to answer their emails at any time of day and doing everything in the hopes that you will be recognized for your work, that you will appease them, that you will then feel validated. These are all strategies that you may employ from a very good place. These may be strategies that have allowed you to attain the level of success that you’re currently enjoying.
However, what you may find is that there’s a limit to how far you can go with these strategies. Ultimately, turning up the dial on these strategies isn’t going to allow you to get any further. There are a number of reasons for this.
Number one, if you are feeling like you don’t have enough hours in the day. So the strategy that you use is to hustle and to work faster and to work harder and to extend your workday. What you’ll likely find is that you’re not adding to the amount of time that you have. You’re not creating fresh time. You’re just becoming more exhausted in the way that you’re using the time that you have.
As you do more on your list, what you probably find is that your list isn’t actually shrinking. In fact, your list may be growing because we’ve all heard that expression. If you want something done, give it to a busy person. So others may know that if they need to get a job done that you are the most reliable person to turn to.
It may also be that forecasting all the problems doesn’t help you reduce your stress levels. In fact, it may augment your stress levels. As a lawyer, part of your job absolutely is to predict what risks are out there, to identify possible challenges, but you may be taking that to the next level. In which case, you may be unnecessarily putting pressure on yourself. You may be forecasting and troubleshooting for situations that may never happen.
In the process, as I mentioned earlier, you may be so distracted by all of these things that you don’t see a risk that is right in front of you. Sometimes the challenge that ultimately comes up is not one that you ever could have foreseen anyways. I know that that was a situation. I mean it’s happened to me in practice. It’s happened to me outside of practice where you can prepare all you want for the things that are going to happen, but sometimes you just don’t know, right? You just don’t know.
An example comes to mind recently where I was organizing a webinar, and we were all ready to go. At the last minute, one of the speakers had to pull out. That isn’t something that I ever could have predicted. We had done our scripts and all that. So we were ready. We were able to find somebody else to step in. But that wasn’t exactly a risk that was on my radar. It wasn’t something that I had deliberately planned for in preparation for that event. So you may find that you spend a lot of time focused on risks that you’ve identified, but ultimately, the challenge that you’re going to need to rise to is one that you never would have been able to forecast in your planning.
Finally, another area where all these strategies, trying to please all the people, trying to do all the things, trying to be all things to everybody is a strategy that is almost certain to end in disaster. I’ve seen this happen so many times. I have had this happen to me so many times.
Where you are out in the world, and you are trying so hard to help people. You’re trying to accommodate clients. You’re trying to accommodate your boss. You’re trying to accommodate your colleagues. You’re taking on more than you really are comfortable taking on because you want to make it easier for other people because, ultimately, you’re trying to please them. You are trying to demonstrate your value to them.
Unfortunately, what I have seen this result in more often than not is that the person who’s overextending, whether this is you or maybe you can see this in somebody that you know, they end up getting burnt out. They start to feel resentful because now they have overcommitted themselves to this laundry list of obligations that they didn’t really need to take on.
Instead of fostering a relationship where they now feel like they’re truly showing up in service and they’re helping others, what can sometimes happen is that they get resentful. Then the relationship starts to sour. Those negative feelings start to build up. They show up in a different way.
This may be you. You may find that you take something on. You really want to do it, but as you do it and you realize your heart’s not truly behind it, you don’t do the job that you wanted to do. The relationship that you have with a person starts to wane.
So these are all strategies that come from a great place, right? You’re trying to work harder. You are trying to forecast all the potential obstacles. You are doing everything that you can to make the people around you happy. But instead of actually achieving the results that you want, you find you’re exhausted, overwhelmed, and left feeling like there’s no end to the amount of work that you have to do. Then what? Then you’re stuck.
So this is where the idea of do less and be more comes into play. If this is a strategy that you’ve not heard of then it may seem counterintuitive. If that’s the case, I’m actually kind of delighted because it means that this is going to be something that has the potential to really impact you. If this is something that you’ve heard of before or you’ve heard some version of this before, I would encourage you to listen carefully and think about how you may already be applying this. If not, how you might apply this in your practice going forward.
So I’ve boiled it down to really three steps. They’re all straightforward. They are simple, but they are not necessarily easy. The first step is to really ask yourself what it is that you truly want. So going back to the examples we’ve been talking about, let’s say what you think you want is more time, right? How many times that we told ourselves I just want an extra hour or two in the day?
Now let’s pause here for a moment because really ask yourself. If you could extend your day from 24 hours to 26 hours, would you really want to do that if those extra two hours were you sitting at your desk answering the emails that had been growing stale in your inbox? Seriously, would you want to do that?
I know for myself the answer is no. If you said those two hours would be me sitting somewhere comfortably having a laugh with my friends. Absolutely. Let’s bring those two hours and add them to the day. But most of us aren’t thinking about adding time to the day so that we can do that. We are thinking of adding time to the day so that we can simply keep up with the level of work that is coming our way.
So what is it that you actually want? Well, if you’re asking yourself for more time, maybe what you really want is more peace when it comes to your calendar. More confidence that you will get everything done on time. A feeling of ease around time. We mentioned, or actually Jen mentioned, this idea of time scarcity.
It’s a podcast episode that I recorded, episode number 18, where I dive into your mindset around time. Maybe what it is you’re really after is a feeling of peace and calm around time instead of always feeling rushed and hurried like you’re somehow behind and have to catch up. So really what you’re after is a feeling. It’s feeling good.
Another example, if what you’re asking for is less stress. I mean maybe you’re telling yourself that your job is very stressful. The files that you work on a very stressful. Opposing counsel, they are unreasonable. Your boss has really high expectations, and yet, they keep on changing those expectations. So it’s hard for you to keep up with it. Maybe it’s clients who are emailing you in the middle of the night, and you hear the ping on your phone. Next thing you know you’re up answering emails at 3:00 in the morning.
Maybe what you want is to feel less stressed. And maybe really what you want is to feel more confident. Maybe when these situations come up, maybe when opposing counsel is going to town and you’re feeling threatened, that there’s a fear there. That somehow you’re not able to go toe to toe with that person. That you may be missing something.
If your boss is speaking to you and changing expectations, it may be a fear that you’re not living up to those expectations. That maybe you’re lacking confidence to feel like the work that you’re doing is good work. That it’s solid. That you know what you’re talking about.
It may be all sorts of different sources of stress that aren’t necessarily that you need less stress coming at you from the external world, but what you really want is to feel confident that no matter what comes your way, no matter what anybody says to you, you have your own back. You are confident in who you are, and you’re confident in your skills.
So, again, if you go back to what it is that you want, do you really want a less stressful job? Maybe the answer is yes, but maybe you love the challenge. What you really are looking for is a more confident and determined or peaceful, again, way to approach these situations that are really outside of your control.
Third, if what you think is that you want to feel appreciated or to be validated, again, maybe this is truly what you want. I mean you may go and be serving other people thinking that what you want is for all of them to be happy and to think that you’re adding value. But maybe the feeling that you’re really after, the desired outcome of all this is just simply to feel like the work that you’re doing is valued. What I would offer to you is if sometimes that sense of value, that sense of appreciation, must come first from within.
So first step here then is really to take a step back and to think about what it is that you want. What you’ve identified as wanting here. Then ask yourself what’s behind that? What is it that is truly going to satisfy you? What is the feeling that you’re going after? When you have that in focus, that will help guide you as we move to the next stage.
So now that we’ve identified the challenges that you’re having and what it is that you really want as outcomes, the next step, or the second step, is to apply the be, do, have model. Really this is you making the distinction between a human being and a human doing. If you are drawn to the title of this podcast, chances are you’re spending more time right now in the human doing than you are in the human being. This really is the crux of today’s podcast is to make that shift. So instead of focusing on doing more, I am going to invite you to start being more.
So what does that mean? What does that have to do with the be, do, have model? The be, do, have model is a model that I learned when I was doing my coach training. I think it’s helpful here as a way of illustrating how to think, how to be more and do less. The be, do, have model is really premised on this idea that so many of us think that we need to do certain things so that we can have what we want, and then be a certain way.
So if you were to use this, as an example, let’s say it’s time management. You feel stressed. Your calendar is out of control. You never get to the bottom of your to do list. You may think that you need to do, do being maybe it’s complete all the tasks that are on your to do list, so that you can have a controlled calendar, control over your time, a more peaceful day, a better structured day, so that you can be calm, confident. So do is the task, have is a controlled calendar, and be is how you’re going to feel at the end of it.
Now, I pause here for a moment. If time management is something that is something that you want to work on, I’m just going to footnote that I’ve done a number of podcasts is on time management and related topics. So we’re just going to link to all of those in the show notes. So you can look for those on thejoyfulpractice.com website. If those are topics that resonate, you can also scroll through the titles of the podcasts that I recorded. Just a little aside for anybody for whom this particularly resonates.
So, again, going back, that was the do, have, be model using time management as an example. So what we want to do is bring ourselves into a fresh model, which is called the be, do, have model. It’s totally counterintuitive because instead of doing anything, we start with the being.
So, in this case, if what you want is to get on top of your time, I would invite you first to be that person, right? What is it that you would feel if you had control over your time?
Number one, you would probably feel calm. You would probably feel unhurried. You would probably feel like you have exactly the right amount of time for whatever it is that you need to do. You would be the person that is confident that you always submit your work exactly when you need to, that you respond when you need to, and that if you choose to let something go, that that is a choice that you’re making and it’s the right choice for you. So that is the be. You get to start there. You get to start with the feeling of calm, confident, deliberate.
From that place, that is where you start doing. So when you’re in that mindset, when you’ve got that energy of being calm and proactive instead of reacting to the external circumstances around you, then you get to do.
So what do you do when you’re in that situation? If you have an influx of emails and you sit down to that email list, and you put yourself in that state of being calm and knowing that you’re able to do the triage. You’re able to respond in the way that makes sense to you, you’re going to bring a different energy to that situation. As a result, you are going to have the time management practices. You are going to have the results, the managed calendar, the conscientious and deliberate choices that you’re going to make. You’re going to have all that as a result of following the be, do, have model.
So that is in a nutshell, what be, do, have looks like. I would invite you to think about what that might mean for you. If you take a particular challenge that you’re having right now, who must you be in order to have what you want? What are the items that you’re going to do when you are acting from that place?
So that’s step two. So step one is to really figure out what is it that you’re going after. Step two is distinguish between a human being and a human doing, applying the be, do, have model. Number three is to recalibrate your winning strategy.
Now, this is a concept that I am borrowing from Tracy Goss, who wrote a book called The Last Word on Power. Tracy talks about this concept of your winning strategy. What’s so fabulous about this concept is Tracy Goss is really talking about high achievers, people who have achieved success who want to reinvent themselves to achieve greater success.
What she talks about in a part of the book is that we all have strategies that we have relied on to win, to get to the place where we are today. If you think about the successes that you have had, chances are you will be able to identify your winning strategies, how you got to be where you are today.
The challenge is that sometimes your winning strategies will help you to be where you are. But if you want to reach that next level, you may need to release the strategy that’s got you to where you are so that you can adopt a new winning strategy that will take you further. This reminds me of the quote that is usually attributed to Einstein, which is that the thinking that got you here isn’t the same thinking that will get you there.
So what might a winning strategy be? Well, for many of us, many of you, the strategy might be working hard, right? You’re able to apply yourself, you’re disciplined, you’re determined, and you know that if you put your nose to the grindstone, you are going to create exactly what it is that you want to achieve.
It may be that getting A’s, being perfect is your winning strategy. You’re able to produce work at a level that is unimpeachable. That is your strategy, and that is what you’re sticking to. Maybe your strategy is taking control. There’s all these different pieces that are happening at any given time. You have a gift for stepping in, seeing all the different parts, and controlling them so that you achieve the desired outcome.
So you may find that if your winning strategy is to get the results that you want, to feel like your contributing to manage stress levels by doing, then you may find that you’re really going to struggle to redefine your winning strategy to get to that place where you really want to go next. So to summarize, the strategy that I’m suggesting in order for you to do less and be more is to number one, identify what you want. Number two, to be before you do. Number three to recalibrate your winning strategy.
Now, the reason that this is going to work is that number one, once you’ve identified what it is you’re aiming for it is so much easier for you to move forward. You now have a goal in mind. You know where to go. When you decide that you’re no longer going to put the emphasis on the doing and you’re going to start putting the emphasis on the being, you can release the frustration of trying to do everything, of trying to be everything to everybody, of trying to forecast every single possible scenario.
When you can be and then do, what you’ll notice that there’s an instant shift that will help you to create better results. So instead of trying to do all the things—To me the analogy that comes to mind is when you’re driving a standard car. When you’re in second year, for example, you can keep pressing the gas, but you’re not going to be going that much faster. You’re gonna get stuck at that point where the engine is revving, the revs are really high, but you’re not moving faster. You have to switch up to third gear if you want that to happen. Same on a bicycle.
So what you are doing is when you shift away from the doing and shift into the being, effectively what you’re doing is you’re transitioning into that next year. You’re allowing yourself to reinvent whatever your winning strategy has been so that you can operate from a different place and achieve different results.
So what might that look like? Well, you may trade in one winning strategy for another. So if your strategy was to do everything yourself then your new strategy might be getting really good at delegating. If you’re used to doing things from a place of feeling obligated to do them because somebody asked you to do them then your new strategy might be to choose to do things based on what you really want to do. So that will allow you to focus more on what you want to do and focus less on things that you feel obligated to do.
Your strategy may have been to choose doing things that tick certain boxes, that will validate you in a certain way. Instead you’re choosing how to go with things that resonate with you. That, again, may be a tough thing to do because you’re moving away from one winning strategy, which was to check all the boxes, to a different strategy.
Finally, you may be going from a strategy of certainty, again that there’s a path here, you can follow it, to a strategy of being more exploratory. Trusting your intuition more. So when you do these things, you are shifting your winning strategy. These are just some examples. I would invite you to think about what your winning strategies, your new winning strategies, might be and how those would impact the decisions that you would make.
Now, when you start making decisions from a place of being as opposed to a place of doing, you will also start to feel more calm and more confident. Yes, you will still be dealing with to do items, but you’ll be acting from a place of purpose and sufficiency instead of reacting from a place of scarcity and lack.
So what I really mean by that is instead of being in that state where you’re feeling reactive, and the sort of fight or flight reactive state comes to mind. Instead of operating from that position where you’re just doing, you’re just trying to get things done, and it doesn’t really matter which order it is as long as you’re chipping away at your to do list and moving forward.
When you can shift out of that energy and move into that rest and digest energy, then all of a sudden you actually physiologically have access to so much more creativity. That will help you to strategize better, to plan better, to perhaps delegate, to perhaps say no to things. You’re going to be doing that from a completely different energy. That will allow you to complete more of what it is that you have chosen to do, again, with that feeling of calm and confidence because you are now in the driver’s seat.
Now, the next reason why this is going to work is that as you start to act from this place of being as opposed to this place of simply doing, you are going to see how things start to shift around you. So when you’re clear on who you’re being, on how you’re showing up, how does that impact others?
Well, you may feel like you’re not as stressed because you are now seeing yourself as a person who gets things done when they need to get done. You may find that as you pull away from that trying to be all things to all people, you’ll stop blaming other people. You’ll stop blaming yourself. You’ll stop feeling so resentful because you’re no longer putting yourself into that position where you are overextended trying to do all the things all at once.
You may also find that you’re feeling more compelled to move forward. So if there were a number of items on your to do list, for example, that you did not want to do, and you’ve now found a way to remove them or delegate them or deal with them in a way that you’re coming at them with a feeling of confidence as opposed to fear, you may find that you’re now compelled to move forward as opposed to simply scrambling trying to get ahead.
Finally, another reason why this will work is that you actually get to be more of who you are. So when you’re less focused on doing and you’re more focused on being, what you’ll find is that the actions that you take will align more with who you are, more with your values, more with your goals.
As you continually anchor yourself into that pattern of being who you want to be, choosing what you want to do, and aligning yourself with that, you no longer need to look outside of yourself so much for validation or for approval or for that feeling of being valued. You are now getting that from within. You’re being more of who you are.
Now, I said that these skills, these ideas, these strategies are simple, but that they’re not easy. Right now you might be listening and thinking, “Paula, seriously. You’re saying let’s stop doing and let’s start being? How is that going to work? How is that going to help me? This is just a glorified version of fake it until you make it.”
To that, I say this. That it is not easy. It is not simple. Because if you come from a place of being, it will require a number of skills from you. None of them are particularly easy. Number one, it is going to require from you a willingness to stop doing. Doing is comforting because doing keeps us busy. It helps us to feel productive. It’s a distraction for what else might truly be going on. So if you require yourself to pause and to think about what you do before you do it. If you think about who you want to be, that’s going to require you to do something that may be new to you, that may be really challenging for you. So, again, simple, but not easy.
Number two is that to really fully implement this strategy, you need to be willing to try something that you have not tried before. So, again, by the nature of the exercise, by putting the be before the do, you are going to have to decide who you want to be, how you want to be, who that person is, the version of you who has achieved the things that you want, the version of you who has what you think you want, and then allow your actions to flow from there.
This might seem very counterintuitive, especially if this concept is new to you. It may seem backwards. But, again, if you’re willing to take that leap of faith, if you’re willing to test it out and try it, then what you’ll find is that there’s a certain fluidity to it. That there’s a shift in your thinking, a shift in your ability to triage that list of to do’s, to triage the list of commitments that you make, to have a clearer picture of what you want to move forward on and what you don’t want to move forward on. But, again, it starts with that willingness to put yourself in a position that you may not be comfortable with.
It also requires you to be willing to let go of your current winning strategy to make room for a new one. That can be so bumpy and scary, and it can feel so risky. If you are accustomed to being the person that does all the things and now all of a sudden, you’re delegating or you’re relying on somebody else to do something, that can feel really scary.
If you are accustomed to being a perfectionist and doing everything 100%, it may feel unnatural to you if you start cutting corners. You are all professionals. You know that there are areas where cutting corners is not an option. But if you look and take inventory of areas where you’re going 110%, there may be areas where 90% is good enough. So that exercise in itself may be really challenging though because you’re used to being 110% across the board. Where can you cut some corners?
Another area might be disappointing people. So if your winning strategy has always been to make sure that everybody around you is happy, it may be that your new winning strategy doesn’t allow you to do all of that. It may be that everybody isn’t always happy with you. Are you willing to do that in order to be the person that you ultimately want to be? So these are all challenges.
Finally, if you want to implement a strategy, it may require that you be willing to redefine who you are being. So for all of you who are busy, and I include myself in this category, busyness, as I mentioned, can sometimes be something that we are used to, right. We’re used to being distracted by the busyness, by always having something to do, to feeling like we’re contributing. We’re productive because we’ve got so much on our plate. If you’re taking away that busyness, what do you put in place of that? How You’d need to redefine who you are if you take that away?
Now, if you do all this and you’re willing to take on these challenges, willing to go through the discomfort, the results that you’ll create will be different. You will not be able to create more time in the day. As I alluded to earlier, you may not want more hours in the day. I don’t think that I do unless asleep during those hours. But you will experience the hours of your day differently.
So you may find no you don’t have more hours, but you’re better aligned. The work that you’re doing is more aligned with what you want to do. You may feel like there’s less time scarcity. You may find that you get things done or you choose not to do things on purpose. So you’ve now approached your days with a higher degree of intentionality. That creates different results and outcomes. It shifts the makeup and the mosaic of what it is that constitutes your day to day. It may also be that you get to let go of things, and then you get to feel really good about it.
Now, when it comes to stress, it may be that you still have stress in your work and in your life, but you will approach it differently. So maybe you’re devising a strategy that aligns more with how you choose to be. So if you’re approaching your stressful situations from a position of being calm and confident and determined then that will shape the nature of your interactions. It will shape the conversation that you have with yourself. It may shape the conversation that you have with those around you.
If you’re interested in building your confidence, especially if you’re not quite at that point where you feel confident yet, I encourage you to go back to the podcast episode that I recorded about how to conduct yourself when you don’t feel confident yet. The title is a variation of that. Really what I invite you to do in that episode is to examine your relationship with confidence, and to start imagining what other strengths you might draw on when you’re not quite at that position yet. So I would invite you to go back to that episode. There will be a link to it in the show notes.
Then finally, the results that you’ll create will include relationships that are coming from a different perspective, that are based on a different premise. So if you find that you are able to be the person that you want to be. Maybe that version of you who isn’t overextending herself, is one who has the clear idea of what she wants to do going forward, where she wants to prioritize her commitments.
She is a person who is able to set up boundaries where those boundaries are necessary. She is able to say no without beating herself up or feeling guilty or feeling like she’s missing out on an opportunity. She’s able to show up in service 100% when she makes that commitment. But is also able to say when she is unable to help out with a project that she doesn’t have the capacity, that it’s not something that she is able to take on.
So when you’re able to do that then not only are you saving yourself from a potentially awkward situation where you feel resentful and overextended. But what you may also find is that now you’re giving others the opportunity for themselves to grow and to learn. You may be surprised at what happens from there.
So that, my friends, is the episode that I have for you today. This strategy of moving from a place of doing, being a human doing to becoming or rebecoming a human being. I hope this message resonates with you. I hope this is something that you think you’ll be able to apply in your practice, apply in your personal relationships. Something that will help you next time you feel overwhelmed and like your to do list is just growing. Now you’ve got another tool in your toolkit, and it’s one that I find to be very helpful. I really hope you love it too.
So with that, I’m going to say goodbye. As always, I love having you here. If you’d like to reach out, you can find me on LinkedIn. You can send me an email. You can find me on my website. I would love to hear from you. I wish all of you a wonderful week. I wish you all a week of being exactly how you want to be, making decisions from that place, and for all of you just hoping that you have an amazing week. Thank you again for tuning in. I will look forward to reconnecting with you again soon. Bye for now.
If you enjoyed today’s show and don’t want to miss an episode, subscribe, and follow the show wherever you listen to your podcasts. If you haven’t already, please leave a rating and review. Your feedback will help me create a podcast that’s tailored to your needs and goes straight to the heart of what matters to you. For instructions on how to subscribe, rate, and review the podcast, visit www.thejoyfulpractice.com/podcastlaunch. See you next time.
Thank you for listening to this episode of The Joyful Practice for Women Lawyers podcast. If you want more information, visit www.thejoyfulpractice.com. See you next week.