Monday Motivation: This Is Why You Need To Pick Your Friends Like You Pick Your Pens...
So Get It Done Day is a new monthly Yes Queen holiday that I would like to start. Similarly to Put It In The Universe Day, it would occur on either the last day of every month, or the last Saturday of every month. I'm still toying around with what day I think would be best, but it just so happened that this past Saturday was not only the last day in June, but it also happened to be a day in which I finally took some time to get some shit done...
So in between trying to run Yes Queen, and Real Talk Love Therapy, and being a human, I've been working a lot on my mental self over the past few weeks, and trying to learn more about my energy.
Our energy is one of the most precious resources that we have, and yet not surprisingly, it is the resource that we give away most often, and most times, to people/situations that don't deserve it.
And #RealTalk, I got to tell y'all in 2018 I've had enough of doing it. You see this year right here...
THIS is the year where I finally want to see a return on my invested energy in everything I do. And hell nah do I feel selfish about saying that.
So as I've been spending more time observing and acknowledging where my energy goes, who/what drains me, and who/what revitalizes me, I started noticing how cluttered my house looked, and how overwhelming it was making me feel.
So using Get It Done Day as my motivation, I decided to spend most of my Saturday sprucing up my apartment, and giving it a different/more lively sense of energy. I moved books around, I vacuumed, I dusted pictures, and threw away stuff that I felt didn't serve a purpose for me anymore.
In the process of doing this, I noticed that I had a giant jar of pens/pencils/markers sitting on my bookshelf. I said to myself, “Oh, I bet you half of those things don't even work anymore. It’s time to find out, and throw out what needs to go.”
Now any other day in the week I would have cringed at the thought of literally going through this giant jar of pens/pencils/markers to test each and every one of them. I would have told myself there's not enough time in the day to do something as mundane as this.
But in the end, I have to say that I'm quite glad that I did it because it ended up giving me a gift of clarity about myself, and a life lesson that I would love to share with you all.
So I take the jar down off the shelf, grab a sheet of paper, and begin to scribble away to see what pen/pencil/marker works, and what does not.
So the first thing I pick up out the jar is a mechanical pencil with no eraser.
A "click-click-click-click" sound bounces through the air.
I press down on it a few times to see if there's any lead that comes out.
I say to myself, “why did I ever even keep this?” as I toss it into my trash bag.
The next thing I pick up is a Sharpie marker. I initially wasn't even going to try it because I figured that since the cap was on it, and I never used it, it should be okay. But my gut said we're already here. You might as well just try it, and confirm that it's okay.
So I unclip the marker, and run my hand across the page in a giant swirl motion only to be met with a very dry and dull rubbing sound on the paper.
“Wow this is dead?,” I thought. "I guess it's good I checked after all."
So I kept going through pen after marker after pencil, finding a good chunk of them still usable, but surprisingly disappointed at how many I had sitting there taking up space while being unusable.
It was in this moment that I realized how my bad habit of letting things take up space that were not serving me didn't just apply to my jar of writing tools. It was a habit that I had let bleed over into the relationships that I had with people in my life.
In the past few weeks, as I've started to take more time to find clarity on where my energy is going, I realized that like my jar of writing tools, I was letting a lot of people take up space in my life that were not serving me. And when I say "not serving me," I don't mean it in a selfish way. It is not bad or selfish to desire having relationships with people in your life that fuel you.
But the most important thing that I have to keep telling myself every day is that the energy you share with people needs to be reciprocal; they need to revitalize and recharge you when you need it most, and vice versa.
But, as women especially, we have always been taught that getting our energy back is not anywhere near as important as it is to provide it to those in need. And I say in the #UnapologeticAgeOfWomen that we live in now...
It was through the act of cleaning out my clutter physically that I realized just how much unnecessary energy clutter I was keeping around me as well -- people that never felt like they could be wrong, people that never felt like I was doing enough, people who felt like the world owed them stuff -- all of this negative energy around me was not only draining me of my energy, and making it very hard for me to get through my day to day, but it was making a home out of me; planting roots of negativity on my spirit, and keeping me from reaching my goals.
So I'm asking you just as I had to ask myself that day, if you wouldn't keep a pen in your life that doesn't follow through with what it is supposed to do, why are we keeping people in our lives that are doing the same?
A good pen, just like a good friend, doesn't get in your way or give out on you when you need it most. A good pen, just like a good friendship, feels smooth, allows you to speak your mind, and always helps you add to your life. It helps you keep track of yourself.
And I get it, throwing out a bad pen is much easier than throwing out a bad friend/relationship, especially because like my dried out sharpie marker, there are certain relationships we have where on the surface everything looks functional, but once we try lean on them for support, we see how dried up the relationship really is.
But I wouldn't be doing right by you as your big sistah auntie queen if I didn't keep it real, and say that keeping these useless "pens" around is only giving you a false sense of comfort; it is letting you think you have more support than you actually do.
And I know it can be hard to deal with the fact that we actually only have a handful of pens we can count on, but to that I would say, "would you really want a jar of 20 pens that you're not sure what you're going to get every time you reach for one? Or would you rather have 5 solid pens that you know will always be there to help you write out and achieve your goals and dreams?"
So as you go forth and reimagine your Monday this week, I hope that you not only switch up the energy in your living space, and clean out your pen jar, but that you also take some real time to reevaluate the people in your life that might be holding you back from telling that beautiful untold story dying to be told within you.
Here is an article about the different ways in which people might be draining your energy, and best practices on how to manage your relationship with them.