Today I spent the day spoiling my nine year old puggle, Maggie. She deserves it and I never feel like I give her enough attention (any dog owner/ lover probably agrees with that last statement). Spending the day with her reminded me why I gave up my 8-5 desk job and a hellish commute. It's so I can do things like I did today.
What you don't know about Maggie is that just when you think she's napped enough, she'll nap some more. And not in a cute way, rolled up in a little ball. No. like a sprawled out starfish, covering as much surface area of the bed as possible. This is what she looked like this morning (...because getting onto the pillow was just too difficult.)
Now, I typically like to get up between 5:30 - 6:30 am to head to the gym or get an early start on work, but Maggie reminds me that some days you need to exercise self-care. So instead, today I kicked off my day with some "light" morning reading of The Thank You Economy by my favorite entrepreneurial role model, Gary Vaynerchuk. I noticed how easy it was to transition into writing a big pitch I'm working on after getting into the right mindset.
After a few hours of productive work, I decided to take a break and bring Maggles to the park. I'll be damned if I miss a few hours by the lake on a sunny, 90 degree day. You know what's funny? One of the biggest pains I experienced working in the corporate world - one that I'll never forget - was that feeling of being trapped in an office every day while the earth smiled and shared its warmth, yet I wasn't able to fully enjoy it. I liked my job a lot and loved my team, but I was tired of sharing in my friends' and colleagues' repeated complaints about being stuck inside on a nice day. It eventually got so bad that I promised myself I wouldn't be one of those people...that I wouldn't let another beautiful day go to waste. And so here I am. (You can't see it from this photo, but Mags and I are both smiling.)
Now, I've had a lot of days as an entrepreneur where work and deadlines take precedent. More days will come when I will need to substitute joy for hard work and sacrifice leisure for deadlines. Still, Maggie reminds me of the importance of self-care, the healing power of fresh air and sunshine, and that touching soft grass with your toes is meant to be shared and enjoyed, not ignored. It's days like today that validate and give promise to my scary and risky decision to go work for myself - in all its uncertainties - so that I can make time to stop and smell the flowers, sip the warm breeze and spend more time with the things that bring me joy.
Reconnecting with my joys and gaining back my time weren't my only motivators. Stay tuned for Part II of this series, and thanks for humoring my pet obsession.