Or, why I show up to client sessions looking my worst.

Getting it all done is a serious struggle. I know it and I know you do too. We’ve all heard you can’t pour from an empty cup. We can know that and still not make it happen.

It’s a super busy time for me. I am right in the heart of the harvest season at the farm, my practice is booming, and my daughter is home for just a few more weeks before she starts HIGH SCHOOL (which I think will be a seismic shift in our lives.) We will have family visiting soon and honestly, the house is a mess (crops look great though!) Oh, and I am helping start a chapter of Slow Food. There’s a lot of work that goes into forming a non-profit. This is probably the zenith of my year.

I’m sure many of you are feeling just as much pressure, if not more. I’ve been checking in a lot with myself to make sure I am honoring my own health needs during this crazy time. Here are some thoughts on how I am prioritizing my health so I CAN get it all done. My hope is that they can spark an idea that will help you too.

One: I prioritize my workout. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning mean I am at Crossfit or doing some heavy lifting in the form of farm work. It’s on my calendar. No one can book me then and my family knows. Could I take more clients by freeing up that time? Yep, but I won’t.

Two: I prioritize my sleep. For real. For me, sleep is the linchpin of ALL of it. I am sometimes in bed at 8:30 pm! Truly. I honor my bedtime routine and give myself the gift of rest. Short of bloodshed, I would never sacrifice my sleep.

Three: I stay hydrated. That’s really on my mind since this is a very hot and dry July. I pay close attention to my body, drink plenty of water, and add electrolytes when needed. No, I don’t mean sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade that are full of sugar, food dyes, and artificial junk. I have a whole podcast on hydration that you can listen to here. The product I use is Thorne’s Catalyte. It’s been saving my summers for years.

Four: I take shortcuts when I need to. I cook from scratch and we eat whole foods, but when I am super busy, meals get simpler and I may spend a bit more on convenience. One of our local fantastic meat farmers has ham steaks on sale? Sounds like an easy dinner to me. Just put some sweet potatoes in to roast and add a green salad. Summer cooking has always seemed easier to me. So much great produce from my farm or others. A side can be as simple as boiling a few ears of corn or slicing a tomato. Save the more complex recipes are for weekends, rainy days, and winter.

Five: I stop to appreciate the small wonders. Really, that’s what Small Wonder Farm and Small Wonder Food are all about. I take my inspiration from nature and in the middle of summer, there’s so much inspiration that it can become a blur. Stop. Look at the flowers, check out that cool bug, listen to the frogs, marvel at an amazing piece of produce. It’s all miracles.

Six: Let it go. Here’s the truth. You can’t do it all. I sure can’t. I’ve found as I age that it is easier for me to prioritize. Now at 47, I’ve let a lot of things go. I show up to client meetings straight from my workout. Not out of disrespect for my clients, but to give them and me the best me they can get. It doesn’t really matter if I am in workout wear with my hair pulled back. How can I help clients take care of themselves if I am not taking care of myself?

I let the housework go in the summer and focus on everything I need and want to do outside. No one is going to have their life ruined if they need to dig through a laundry basket for a clean pair of socks. Let it go. Prioritize and delegate.

Seven: Break the rules. Today is Monday. I would have gone to Crossfit this morning. After 2 1/2 weeks of farming in extreme heat, my body says no. I’m listening. Slept in a bit. Coffee and meditation on the porch and now I’m at work.

I hope these seven points spark some insights into how you can take better care of yourself–physically and mentally.