7:00 pm I lie on the couch, exhausted from the day and having somehow—yet again—produced a decent dinner for my family. My head hurts. Turns out I’ve been unconsciously straining my eyes for God only knows how long. Moms do this; we don’t notice our own things until they hurt, and ignore them until we can’t (my glasses arrive next week).
7:05 pm I yearn for my bed and my shows, but I have a 7:30 board meeting in which I need to make a presentation. A presentation with energy and enthusiasm? At an evening meeting. I haven’t trained properly for this particular Iron Man.
7:10 pm I put my earbuds in and listen to my ThinkUp affirmations… I trust myself… I have something special to offer the world. Life’s challenges help me grow and become who I am… The world is abundant and full of joy (and entirely effed-up but everyone I love lives here). I close my eyes and rest my fingertips between my eyebrows. I once performed this same magic trick to get my infant son to sleep. Turns out it works wonders for a tension headache, too.
7:15 pm I pry myself from the couch, reminding myself that in actuality this presentation is a simple invitation. Me and my co-chair will welcome the board into the work of our committee as we strive to better serve our teens and the community. I warm up my tea. I put on a little lipstick. Ha HA! No one will ever know I’m not wearing a bra, because no one will see below my shoulders. Thank you, virtual meetings!!
7:20 pm I turn on my office light board, which reads POSITIVITY RESONANCE and functions to turn on my own positivity resonance. It reminds me that offering heartfelt connection to others is hope in action. Offering positive connection can and does change the dynamics in your brain and the dynamics between people.
7:25 pm I pull up my meeting notes and log on. If I have trouble with the technology, everyone will understand, and someone will jump in should I need help. I feel lighter and happier as I join the meeting. I feel open and ready.
We’ve all been here. Next time you feel nervous, tired, or uninspired, think about the task as an opportunity for connection, including connection with yourself. Hug yourself or place a kind hand on your head or heart, and remind yourself that you have something special and important to offer. Even if you don’t know what it is in that moment, you do. You DO.
Need a little encouragement? Here’s a 5-minute mood lift for you—a visualization for what’s working well.
Ann Imig is the founder of Listen to Your Mother, a live storytelling series in 60+ cities and book (Putnam, 2015). She holds a Master of Social Work degree from University of Chicago, and is certified in Positive Psychology Coaching from WBI. A parent, partner, and creative multihyphenate, Ann would love to meet you and hear your story. Find her at ListenLifeCoaching.com.