Photo as seen in Vogue Paris April 2010
It wasn’t even 25 days into the New Year, yet I was well aware that if 2013 was going to be an amazing year for me (which it is) I was going to have to spend some over due much needed time with myself. So, at the suggestion and encouragement of a dear friend from undergrad I took a 28 day social sabbatical this past February. For 28 days I did not use any social media, I asked friends to refrain from calling, texting, emailing, g chatting, stopping by, and inviting me to social functions. Instead, I spent the month hanging out with myself and doing all of the things that I find exhilarating, inspiring, and nourishing.
Photo courtesy of Google Images- Musical Artist Res
I started the month by attending the annual Women and Influence Conference hosted by Women’s Way, Philadelphia’s largest nonprofit for women. I spent hours with other women from all over the country doing all kinds of amazing work. I got all of my annual medical exams out of the way. I took more bubble baths, more DIY manicures and pedicures, and created a Tuesday Night self care ritual. I discovered all kinds of second hand shops and scored some sweet vintage jewelry and handbags. I tried new recipes, like brown sugar crab cakes and waffles. I met a guy a really sweet, funny, handsome, engaging guy that I am not sure without sabbatical I would have given the time of day. I LIVEd during those 28 days. I LIVEd like I hadn’t been LIVE-ing the weeks, dare I say months, prior.
Here’s the thing, when you take time to connect with yourself, free from the well intentions, drama, and chatter of your social circles, you get to connect to you. You get to tune into what you need, what you desire, and perhaps most importantly, what you deserve. When you are tuned in with you, you allow yourself to make room for opportunities and experiences you are normally too busy or exhausted otherwise to encounter.
When you are in tune with yourself you get to check the pulse of your life and the depth of your life’s breath. You become aware of what you need to LIVE and what is draining the life out of you. During my sabbatical, I discovered how much I need to spend more time with people LIVE-ing their best lives. I discovered how much more time I needed to care for myself, beyond the weekends when I was run down from a hectic work week. I discovered that I was engaged in several relationships that were exhausting as the absence of engaging in them during my sabbatical was… a relief.
Photo courtesy of Catherine Malandrino
A simply connected life starts with a connection between you and you before there can be a connection between you and anyone else. It starts with intentional time devoted to engaging you, all of you.
How do you stay in tune with who you are? When’s the last time you checked your life’s pulse? Are your breaths deep and energizing or shallow and exhausting?
I’d love to hear from you. xxoo