Hello, and welcome to Your Own Wellbeing, the podcast. My name is Catherine Henderson, and I am your host.
Our topic today is enjoying the mundane parts of your life. I’m so excited to share it with you because even though the title itself is not super snazzy, the content for this one is brilliant. I hope you will listen in because I think you will find yourself here.
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All right, but now let’s jump into our topic for today, “enjoying the mundane parts of your life.” Okay, so I wanted to cover this because when you are improving your health, which is what I focus on with all of my clients and in the work that I do when you’re improving your health, and you’re working on changing your lifestyle, there can be a lot of mundane tasks that go along with it.
Things like meal prepping, meal planning, cooking, cleaning, all of your just even regular life, and chores that you have to do. All of those things can start to seem very mundane, working out, getting your water in, all of those things that you’re trying to build, those habits you’re trying to build can seem very mundane, very boring, they can get old. As I said, alongside doing those, you still have your regular daily tasks.
After a while, you start to have that stop, start-stop mentality. You start to have a lot of ups and downs, and it leaves us in this push-pull tension with what we should do versus what we really want to do. Right? So then we live our lives in this constant tension. It’s this feeling of prison versus freedom, work versus play, or restriction versus indulgence, right?
Because of this, because we live in this constant tension, we’re often vacillating between those two with our actions. So sometimes it’s not just the tension itself that we’re in. It’s that we give in to that tension. We’re either bad, or we’re good. We’re either up or we’re down. We’re in, or we’re out. That tension keeps us from making progress toward our goals, which ultimately is what we want to accomplish here Your Own Wellbeing.
So I want to help us with that today in this episode. Now, most of the time, this leads to feeling like we have no willpower. It leads to having a constant concern that you’re going to lose control. For most of us, we live our lives feeling like we need to keep this tight control over our actions, because we know that our desires are other than that, right? I’m speaking to you, Christian women.
If this sounds like you, do you feel like you’re trying to fit yourself into this mold of what you should be? And secretly, you don’t really enjoy it. Secretly, you kind of want to escape from it all. You want to feel that freedom of being able to do what you desire, but you also want to be good.
So because you want to fit yourself in that mold of being good, you are not excited about the things you’re doing on a regular day because they’re opposite of your desires, but you’re trying so hard to just be good. Does that sound familiar to anyone? Because if I’m being honest, I speak this from experience. I speak this from my own life experience, the way that I lived my life for so long.
What’s worse is that then we find ourselves feeling guilty because we feel like we should be enjoying this, right? We should be enjoying living in this way, fitting into this mold. We should love that. So it leads to this constant tension, and then the guilt and the shame. And it’s an endless cycle, an endless cycle. But I want to challenge us today to do just what we’re longing to do, which is to break free, but breaking free does not mean just giving in to all of those desires that you know are not meant for you.
Breaking free means to actually abolish this prison, start to do the things that you enjoy, and make your desires aligned with what God desires for your life so that it all fits together. It all works together. It means that once you do this, you won’t need that release. You won’t need to go find that feeling of freedom because it will just be your life. Okay.
So let’s get practical. I’ve got two points that I want to make on this topic today to help you along with this.
The first one is this. It could be that you’re just too busy. So before I give you any practical tips about how to make the mundane, more fun, or more enjoyable, or any of that, I want you to really, truly consider your life. Consider all of the things that you have filling your life. I just want to ask you, are you too busy? Probably you’re nodding your head and saying, “yes,” you are too busy.
I want to tell you that if you are too busy, you are doing it wrong. You’re doing life wrong. I’m telling you that very pointedly, maybe even harshly, because I want to wake you up to this, you do not have to live life the way that you’re living it if you are too busy. It doesn’t have to be that way. We are the ones creating this.
You might push back against that. You might say that there are all of these things, you’ve got the kids, you’ve got the husband, you got the job, you’ve got that this that, the financial concerns, all of the things.
I don’t care. I do not care how many things are pressing on you from the outside. You have the ability to change your life. You are in control of the way that you spend your hours every day. Maybe you don’t have control over every single hour, but I bet you have control over a lot more than you take credit for.
So maybe it’s time to lay some things down. Maybe it’s time that you made some changes where you can. I encourage you to be ruthless in your evaluation of your time, your calendar, and your commitments. Get rid of some of these things that do not matter.
Your children do not have to be in all of the sports, the travel teams, and all that. They don’t have to be involved in every event at school and on every academic achievement award or whatever it is. You don’t have to do all of that for your children. It’s not necessary, okay?
You do not have to do every social event that comes your way. You don’t have to do all of those things. You don’t have to do all of the things that your church asked you to do or that your church provides opportunities for you to do. Do you need to do some? Yes, of course. You need to serve where you’re meant to serve. But you do not have to run yourself ragged.
I’m encouraging you to be ruthless in your examination of your own time. Because when you have some time freedom, the mundane is manageable, the mundane is fine.
I want to tell you how I know. Right now, as you can see if you’re watching this on YouTube, I’m sitting in the most beautiful backyard in an Airbnb and traveling for nine months. This, I know, is not regular life. It’s not regular life for me in the long term. I don’t have a dryer here. So I’m hanging my clothes on the line to dry, and it’s delightful. In my old life, if I had to do that, it would absolutely be mundane. It would be a chore. It would be unthinkable to have the time to do that and certainly unthinkable to enjoy it. But because I have so much time right now, it is fine. It is even a little bit of fun. So I know how important this time freedom is, and I know how much of a game changer it is.
Okay, now, for the more practical, for the everyday mundane tasks that you’re still going to have to do even when you have all the time in the world. How do you make those things fun? How do you enjoy those things?
I want you to just start looking at every task you have to do, and every time you have to do a task that you don’t enjoy. Ask yourself right before how could I enjoy this? How could I make this enjoyable for me?
Now, for me, a huge part of this is music. I know that is so simple, but music, for me, is a cure-all. It is an attitude changer. It is a mood enhancer. It is my natural antidepressant. I absolutely love music, and it’s so easy to incorporate into almost any mundane task that I have to do. It makes it so much more enjoyable.
That’s not the only way. That’s not the only thing that’s out there. I want you to think about every little task. So say it’s your workout, and you just dread doing your workouts. Why do you keep doing it in a way that you dread? Why not turn your workouts into a playtime? Play with your kids.
Go play a game, join a community league that you enjoy, or join a class. Do something, make it fun, make it something that you’re actually going to look forward to, and you’re going to be so much more likely to do it.
Okay, when it comes to cooking, make that into family time cook with your spouse, your kids, a friend, phone a friend while you’re cooking, whatever it is to make that fun for you.
Next, make anything a game. You can make anything into a game. I’m going to show you how big of a nerd I am. This is probably a little bit embarrassing for me to admit, but one of the things that I love to do is to race against the clock. Whenever I have a task that I do not enjoy, I give myself a time limit on how much time it’s going to take me to do it. Then I race to get it done. It is the easiest way to take a mundane task that I hate doing. Even if I hate doing it, I’m getting excited about the fact that I’m gonna get it done fast, right?
It’s as simple as that. Take these mundane tasks, and instead of just going through the grind every day and doing them anyway, even though you don’t feel like it. Ask yourself how you could make it fun or more enjoyable.
Lastly, stop to be mindful and to be grateful for the mundane. Here’s the last thing that I want you to know. I want to leave you with this. Make it your goal to create enough space in your life to be bored. To actually just be bored. Because having the space to be bored is going to allow your own creativity to rise up. It’s going to allow you to see your life in a different way, to create new possibilities and new opportunities. Being bored is such a gift.
So I want to encourage you to enjoy the mundane and create enough space and enough time to be bored. When was the last time you were bored? Can you even remember it? So I’m going to challenge you to create time for boredom in the next seven days. I’m putting a time limit on it because I mean it. I really want you to explore this and see how your life could be different.
Okay, that’s all I have for you today. I hope you enjoyed it and I will talk to you soon. Bye now.