Do you ever feel overwhelmed by how much self-improvement information is out there? There’s tons of advice constantly barraging us with how to be better at everything – how to be fitter, how to be a better parent, how to negotiate better, how to give back more, how to be more productive, how to go faster, how to go bigger, how to, how to, how to. There are books that can teach you how to improve yourself. There are courses and websites and lectures and conferences. There is so much information out there that information overload is a real thing.
Sometimes though, you need to take a step back and breathe. It is great to absorb information, but you also need time to process it. We aren’t meant to go-go-go all the time. Why do you think we need sleep? Because our brains need time to recover every.single.night.
Plus, taking a few days or even a couple of weeks can be extremely beneficial to fulling understanding information. Say you’ve been reading a lot recently or watching good documentaries recently…it’s okay to take a step back and watch something that might not be as virtuous as a documentary about the environment. For women particularly, we sometimes need to be given permission to do something (or not do something). Right now and right here, I am giving you permission to take a breather. Life is a marathon, not a sprint, and you’ll never make it to the end if you go all out all the time. We all want to do well, but it is so easy to get overwhelmed in our current culture of information available 24-7-365. If you worry that you’ll miss out on something, don’t. The information will be there waiting for you when you’re refreshed! So when you need to, read a chick lit book, catch up on celebrity gossip, watch an action movie, or binge Grey’s Anatomy if you want – whatever will make you feel better.
After you’ve taken a breather, then come back to it. No need to rush back into being virtuous by listening to a productivity book, a life hacker podcast, and reading blogs about home improvement and being a better parent and raising race-conscious children. These are all good things, but take it easy! Like you, I want to be the best human I can be, but at the same time, we can only do so much.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed with everything, it’s okay! Give yourself permission to take a step back, take some time away from being virtuous, get your energy back, and then ease back into it. You’ll feel more refreshed and have the energy again to continue working on living the life you want.