Selling yourself for the cause

I have been reading recently about simplicity. About slowing life down so we can appreciate the sweet moments and tastes of life.

It occurred to me as I was reading today, that unintentionally as it might have been, I have been selling myself for the cause.

I have been in nonprofit service for 20 years both on staff and as a volunteer. I have volunteered for my kids field trips, joined fundraising committees, chaired galas, joined Rotary and Women’s marches and community organizing gatherings. I have also worked for multiple organizations raising money for disaster preparedness, the environment, low income families, scholarships and emergency funding for students.

All of this is great, and I love that I am a very giving person. But, for years I have been prioritizing “the cause” and “changing the world” over relationships, family, and my health. It is time for that to stop.

If I’m honest, I think I have gravitating to saving the world because, A. I am good at raising funds to support a cause I believe in (and I get great feedback and acknowledgement for that) and B. there are so many people and organizations in need that the compassionate part of me can not sit back and watch, when I know I can help.

The trouble is, I am burning myself out. I have gone from wanting to attend every gala, to dreading the next invitation. I have gone from dreaming and scheming on how to get more resources for my organization, to dreading the “yes, your request has been approved”, because I know that means more work.

I have been meditating this weekend on filling in this sentence, “I am a person who….”

I person who is living a peaceful and peace-filled life.

I have energy to spend meaningful time with my family.

I am living a long, healthy life with a strong and vibrant body and mind.

I am becoming more connected to the source of all life, the spirit that surrounds us and is in us all.

I experience joy through creativity and laughter.

I am a loving partner, mother, daughter and friend.

When we move from saving everyone else, to saving ourselves, this may sound selfish. But in reality, it is the kindest thing we can do, to love ourselves and never, ever sell ourselves for any cause. The price is too high.

As my quiet retreat comes to a close, and I move into the week, I am taking these mantras with me. My life is changing as I learn to enjoy life more fully, love more openly and say “yes” to my own well being. As you move into this week, may you know love and a smile that radiates from your insides saying, “All is well.”

 

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