The Importance of Giving Yourself Grace

Giving grace is hard. 

Giving yourself grace is even harder. 

We all tend to have higher standards for ourselves than others have for us.  We set unrealistic expectations that can cause us stress and affect our productivity. 

We are all try to keep the house clean, meal prep, workout, feed the dog, cut the grass, fix the broken dishwasher, and the list continues…. We put so many tasks on our to-do lists but rarely do we include reaching out to old friends, meditating, minimizing clutter, spending time with family, taking a long shower, or going to the movies.

The activities that fall on the back-burner can be even more important than all of our “priorities.”  Time for self-care usually comes last but is by far the most important.

Sometimes we need to accept where we are at.  We need to step back, look at the bigger picture, and think about what really matters.

Let’s take a look at an example:
I grew up with a perfectly manicured lawn.  When I say perfect, I mean the grass was so soft it felt like a carpet.  Now, I live in a house and we hired a student to mow our lawn.  The student has been slacking this summer to say the least..

At first, this was causing me stress. A lot of stress.  More than it should’ve been.  Every day when I walked to the door, I found myself staring and obsessing over the uncut grass.  We tried sending hints to the student that grass had become longer than preferred, but nothing.   On sunny days, I found myself anticipating and hoping for a nicely manicured lawn on my ride home.  At this point the lawn was beyond overgrown and looked ragged from the outside.

Finally, two weeks later, I was surprised to come home to cut grass.  A smile immediately stretched across my face as I felt relieved.

Days after this occurrence, I reflected on my feelings.  I felt stressed because I was putting the responsibility of cutting the grass on myself.  However, at the end of the day it really didn’t matter if the grass was cut or not.  We live in rural PA.  Our two “neighbors” couldn’t care less.  Needless to say, our grass is cut approximately every 2 weeks.  Sometimes it goes longer between cuts.  I have learned to accept it and give myself grace.

The moral of the story is, give yourself grace where grace is deserved. 

You are human. You cannot do everything.  Make lists and prioritize, but accept the fact that you may not get everything done.  Don’t stress over it, don’t dwell on it. 

Make sure you allow time for self-care too.  Read a book, go for walk, call a friend—whatever it is that helps you recharge, make sure you prioritize time for that too.