Embracing the different seasons of life


This essay first appeared in my newsletter, The Weekly Pep Talk. If you’d like to subscribe for a big old dose of positivity in your inbox every Sunday, you can sign up here.

There’s something about reaching the midpoint of the year that makes me reflect on the months gone by, and think about what I want the next 6 months to hold. This first half of 2019 has been a busy one for me. Work has been a real priority - with both my day job and laying the foundations for my business taking up most of my time.

It’s been a fruitful season, full of productivity and learnings and growth. It’s felt good to pour myself so fully into things that I’m passionate about, to garner positive feedback and praise for my efforts. I have committed to my to do list wholeheartedly, and I’m so proud of what that has allowed me to achieve. For the past 6 months or so, it has felt right for me to lean into the hustle, to keep pushing while the momentum was building behind me.

But a few weeks ago I noticed something shifting in my mind. Suddenly, I wasn’t feeling quite so energetic. Suddenly, the words weren’t flowing from my fingertips quite as quickly. Suddenly I started to resist my to do list, opting for another hour spent reading my book or watching TV instead.

And at first, that made me feel uneasy. I started to panic. I worried that I was losing my work ethic, that without constant effort and hustle, everything I’d achieved in the past few months would start to slip away. I felt guilty about procrastinating, guilty about not finishing my to do list, guilty that I couldn’t seem to match the same level of output that I’ve been achieving so far this year.

I’m embarrassed to admit that it took quite a few tears and a stress induced cold sore to remind me of what I already knew to be true - that there are many different seasons of life. 2019 so far has been a season of energy and output, of growth and resilience, of hard work and hustle. I embraced that season and I threw everything I had into it.

But in the last few weeks I have entered a new season, and I need to honour and embrace this new season just as much as I did the last one. I have to accept that this next season needs to be about rest and fun, about space and energy, about really leaning into living. And I have to accept that those things are just as worthy of my time as productivity and work.

It has been a fitting reminder that we are humans, not robots. Our energy and creativity ebbs and flows, the demands on our time come in peaks and troughs, our needs and cravings will change just as regularly as the seasons around us. By embracing the different seasons of life we are not holding ourselves back or limiting our progress. We are honouring what is it to be human.

So today, why not spend a little bit of time thinking about what season of life you’re currently in? Think about what it is that you truly need right now, and think about how you can honour that need in the best possible way. Because it’s when we learn to embrace these different seasons that we can truly experience all of the richness that life has to offer.