It’s a wonderful feeling to help others. Whether we’re offering a momentary kindness, volunteering our time, or in a career path that’s of service to others – a gratitude filled euphoria sets in when you honor the good you’ve done.
Every now and then…
It sucks being needed.
When I was a little girl, all I wanted to do was heal people. My primary focus was a therapist – which I come pretty close to today. So to actually live this dream has been a blessing; one I remind myself of daily.
But not long ago – I felt my fire begin to fizzle at a rapid pace.
Why am I burnt out? I’m superwoman, this is impossible. She doesn’t burn out!
I’m living this exciting life; doing what I love, traveling, writing.
And then I started to really look at where my energy was going. I noticed how many people in my life “need” me. Family members, friends, clients.
I looked at my emails and text messages and found myself stunned.
“Can you help me with _____?” “Can you do this?” “Can you come to ____ ?” “Help me!” “What should I do about _____?” “I NEED YOU!”
I had literally stopped living my life to cater to everyone else.
I couldn't go for runs in the morning when I wanted to because every time I had a gap in my morning - someone needed me to do something.
I couldn't write because when I was between clients I was scrounging around to get something done for someone else.
I couldn't eat dinner because I was cramming work I couldn't get done because of my "all over the place" schedule into those little breaks.
Weekends - forget about it. What's a weekend?
At first I was pissed.
Then I took a breath and let truth set in.
When did I become this person that everyone depended on?
When did I allow myself to be pulled in so many different directions? Because that was the reality. I ALLOWED this.
I could have said "no." I could have said "maybe next time." I could have missed out on an event just to give myself some rest and catch up time.
But I didn't. I chose not to. I had a choice. I just created this "I have to" mentality.
Sure, it felt nice knowing I was needed, but I forgot the one person who needed me most.
And even worse, I realized I wasn’t helping them at all.
How can anyone blossom if I’m controlling the watering can? They need to seek out their own nourishment, discover their own capabilities.
And I needed to stop letting my own self wither away from lack of pruning.
While it stemmed from my desire to help people figure it out, I’d been doing the polar opposite of helping them figure it out.
The only way to learn is to live the experience - not have the experience taken from you.
Playing the “hero” isn’t real life. Unfortunately, most humans will not learn from getting saved for they can only save themselves.
My message to you is this – if you’re feeling burnt out, ask yourself why? Is it because you’re spending all of your time catering to everyone else’s needs? Is it because you want to make sure everyone is taken care of? How often are you focusing on what YOU need?
You’re not helping anyone but doing everything for them – especially yourself.
I love my clients, family and friends tremendously. I have so much gratitude for having the opportunities that I do and for the people I get to help and those in my life. I will never take that for granted.
But while we’re being of service and helping others, don’t forget that you’re important too. And taking on the world doesn’t make you superman/woman. It makes you exhausted.
Until next time friends!
Peace, love and pixie dust,