“I believe every woman over 50 should stay in bed until noon.” First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower.
A client recently shared this quote with me and I was so struck by it I had to find out more. From what I learned, Mamie had a dedicated practice of meeting her life and responsibilities with a relaxed and easy manner.
She refused to get ruffled about anything; and she frequently began her business of the day, whether it be returning correspondence or ordering groceries from the comfort of her bed. She would emerge to meet the day come late morning.
I was so inspired! Not only because she knew and lived the practice of ease – not unnecessarily pushing or whipping herself into a frenzy to meet the demands of her life – but more importantly because she valued herself enough to make supportive choices on her own behalf.
Mamie got it. And this long before the expectations of women became the outrageous demands of today – to do and be it all perfectly while looking young, fit and sexy.
We could all learn a little something from Mamie about how to practice more ease.
How about you? Are you able to pace yourself? Relax and listen to your own needs for rest, support or more ease? Do you know what that looks like for you? Can you recognize you have needs and that you’re worth making yourself a priority? Do you know you have a right to consider what would make this task, or situation easier or more pleasant for you?
You see, to the extent we can slow down our pace when we need to and resist the cultural pressure to rush, push and do we can ensure that we will have more resilience and internal resources.
Not only will you feel more peaceful and content, but you will be better equipped to meet the demands of your busy life.
So how could you take it easier on yourself today? Could you:
1. Take something nonessential off your to do list?
2. Delegate or ask for help?
3. Say NO?
4. Take a break? Make yourself some tea or put your feet up for a few minutes.
5. Skip the fast lane and take the scenic route to enjoy the beauty of the world around you?
6. Adjust your expectations and be a little kinder to yourself?
Let’s commit to being easier on ourselves.
No matter what’s before us let’s find a way to make the process more relaxing and pleasurable. In that vein, I chose to write this piece while relaxing in my p.j.s (with no bra) on a comfy chair in my backyard periodically gazing into the woods behind us. I’m taking the time to notice the deep green leaves kissed by the sunlight and supported by the dark, sturdy tree trunks reaching to the heavens.
Let’s remember driving yourself to do, achieve or be more doesn’t make you more loveable or worthy – it just makes you more tired. Less can indeed be more when we take the time to find a more relaxed approach to our lives.
So the next time you’re feeling harried or stressed consider, what would Mamie do?
What a lovely post Joni and what I needed! I often need reminders to slow down and take it all in. I felt my own rushed pace relax a little more through the reading of your post, thank you! xx
Thank you Lisa. So glad it helped you slow down and relax. ☺️
I love Mamie’s quote! Due to chronic illness, I was forced to slow down & follow what my body dictates. I often don’t get out of bed until 9AM & even then I choose to stay in my PJ’s until noon (or until the dog begs for her walk). I know working women & busy mom’s aren’t able to do this, but your list provides some other wonderful ways to slow down & be easier on themselves. 🙂
Sometimes my daughter and I spend the whole day in PJ’s on the weekend. And I love to sleep in. There are so many ways to be easier with ourselves. I’m so glad you listen to your body and follow it’s lead. It’s a beautiful place to live from. And you give the world such a gift from your place of ease. <3
I refuse to be rushed or pushed or pulled. While I don’t have a chronic illness like Tae, I have done battle (and won hands down) with breast cancer. As a recovering Type A overachiever, I now teach other powerfully driven women the art of slowing down. Love your article!
I love that Peggy!
As women, we so need permission and modeling on how to slow down.
And so glad to hear you beat the cancer! You are an inspiration.
Great post Joni! Being a late riser, I appreciate Mamie Eisenhower’s story! I have trouble asking for help. Being a triple Leo, I think I can do it all, and I can’t. Now that my book is written and ready to be launched February 17th, 2016 I have had to ask for help from others. What I found is they are more than happy to jump in. I love supporting others and now I accept support from my ‘tribe’ with a heart filled with gratitude.