Whatever with Heather - Mindset, Parenting & Personal Growth

7. Personal Growth Strategy: "Back to School!"

August 16, 2023 Heather Evans Season 1 Episode 7
Whatever with Heather - Mindset, Parenting & Personal Growth
7. Personal Growth Strategy: "Back to School!"
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ready to breathe new life into your daily routine? Craving that fluttery feeling of anticipation that marked the first day of school? It's time to break from the monotony and construct an exciting syllabus for your life. Join us as we discuss creating your personal 'elective courses'. And I'll share the 3 "electives" I'm doing for the next month.

This episode is all about choosing meaningful 'electives' to shake up your life, whether it's a new morning ritual, an exciting workout routine, adventures at home, or a tailor-made personal growth course. We'll be sharing tips on setting deadlines for your goals, designing a course around your aspirations, and how to keep your pursuits exhilarating.

Time to bring back the back-to-school excitement alive in our adult lives.

Speaker 1:

Hey y'all, welcome back to another episode of Whatever with Heather. Today we're talking about back to school. I actually just dropped off all of my kiddos at school and also my husband, because he is subbing today on the first day of school. He hasn't had a first day of school in probably a decade at this point I don't know for sure but it is his first day back at school and he's subbing for a first grade class. He's the real hero today. I hope he's doing well and he's enjoying himself. And then for our kiddos we have an elementary school kid in fourth grade, a middle schooler in seventh grade and this is our first year having a high schooler. She's a freshman and it is so crazy to me that I have a freshman. It feels like high school was yesterday for me, but then also a whole lifetime ago. So when I start to get sad about them being in school, I do let myself feel that and I also try to put myself into what I felt like when I was in middle school and when I was in high school, and so that makes it easier for me to feel excited for them more than like sad that they're growing up. I still get sad, 100%, but also it's okay to be excited and sad at the same time and feel all the emotions. So mostly excited for them, a little bit sad, I mean. If I'm sad, it's for me, right. So happy for them, sad for me. I'm excited for them too. I love seeing them grow up and become who they're becoming. They are amazing humans and, yeah, I'm just excited to hear about their first days of school, but for right now I'm getting this podcast done while they're at school and we are talking about going back to school for us, and not going back to school like college or some educational place, but instead like recreating this in your life. We become adults and then we kind of stop learning From a young age. We go to school every year. The world is set up to keep us learning and keep us moving forward. And then we become adults and it's like what am I gonna do? Do I get to keep learning? What am I gonna do? And then maybe you go to college, you graduate college, and then it's still like then what? And if you think about the first day of school, there's all these emotions, there's the excitement, there could be nerves, there could be fears, there could be hopes and the goal is kind of recreating that in our lives. Our lives can feel really monotonous as adults or, if you're a mom, really monotonous as a mom and everything. It's just a hamster wheel is what it can feel like. So how do we make this feel more fun? And I was thinking of how can we bring this back to school vibe into our life if we're just an adult or a mom or a woman running around or a parent running around taking everyone places or just doing our careers and going to the next thing, like, how can we add some of this excitement and fun back into our lives? And if you think back to school, probably the most fun classes you had were your electives, the classes you chose to take to explore different things. So today you are going to choose your electives two to three classes to be your main focus for the next chapter of your life or the next semester, however you'd like to break it up. So maybe you decide you're going to do this just like semesters in school. So August to December, maybe you decide to do 12 weeks, or for me, I'm actually going to take my classes and I'm going to focus on my classes for the next month. I like to look at moon cycles because they keep me moving forward, and so today is actually a new moon and so my classes are going to go. The classes I choose, the electives I choose, are going to go until the next new moon, and then I'm going to reevaluate. So for me that's right around four weeks, and once we talk about this more, maybe you'll be able to zoom in more on what timeframe you'd like. But that is what we are doing, and the cool thing is is, instead of someone giving you a course catalog of what electives you can choose, like they did in school, the sky's the limit for you. You get to focus on whatever you want to. So first I'm going to tell you the names and the focus of the three courses that I feel I need and want to focus on for the next month. The first class for me is called Intentional Days 101. Class number two is Social Media Detox for Scrolling Addicts. And three, the third class for me, is Discipline is Destiny. So now let me give you a little overview of what these courses will look like for me. This focus will look like for me First, intentional Days 101. The little tagline for this is planning life, so life feels focused and easeful. And then the highlights of this course would be Food Prep for Family, chore System Back in Place and Weekly Schedule Planned in Advance. The focus for this course this is where I'm going to zoom in on my life will be about creating ease in my life through really focusing on the systems of our day to day family mechanics, right, our how our life moves, the cogs and the wheels in our life, how to make these a little more focused and therefore more easeful. How to make our food prep be a little more systematic, bringing our chore system that I've already created, putting it back in place and how we're going to do that in a way where I'm not nagging. And then also, since we're back in school, my husband is working more I will be working more as well. How to get our schedule planned so that we are focused and easeful. We are not a family that likes to just go pedal to the metal, and sometimes that is what our life is like. But we work a lot better when we have times of rest and downtime. So the more focused I can be on our schedules, the more focused we can get on being intentional with our time, the more time we'll have to just have ease and flow. And if we are on our chore system and that's going with ease and flow and it's built so it's not overwhelming I've already built that out to where it's not an overwhelming chore system, when that's in place that will take things off my plate as well as help everyone feel better because the house will be clean and a systematic, easeful way. And then food prep is important because our kids take their lunches to school. They need quick grab-and-go breakfast and my husband is also working and he's the main cook in our family and so finding a way to make sure that we have things planned out so that food doesn't become stressful, that's my first class, intentional Days 101. The second class for me is Social Media Detox for Scrolling Addicts. I have done so well with social media sometimes and not so well other times. I feel like overall, I am better than I used to be, but I would like to hone this in. When I look back on my past, my biggest regret is that I've spent too much time scrolling. Even 15 minutes a day of scrolling is a lot of scrolling. Let me do some math. I'm actually going to go grab a calculator right now. So let's just say you're on your phone scrolling for 15 minutes a day and you do that every day, 365 days a year. That's a total of 5,475 minutes a year, and if we divide that by minutes, let's see how many hours 91 hours and if there's 24 hours in a day if you scroll your phone for 15 minutes a day, over the course of a year you will have scrolled your phone for 3.8 days of your life. And that is if you only scroll for 15 minutes a day, which I know for most of us it's probably longer and scroll could be any time wasted on your phone. Maybe this isn't a problem for me. You maybe you're fine with this. I don't want to spend not much time scrolling. Yet Phones and social media apps are created in a way to be addictive, and so currently the addictiveness of these is rolling, ruling my life instead of me ruling my life. So the focus of my social media detox for scrolling addicts, elective is how to create personal social media rules so social media doesn't rob you of living. That's the tagline I wrote for that. The goal in this course for me will be creating rules around my social media usage so that my life isn't robbed from me because of scrolling and me choosing to not be intentional. At the end of the day, scrolling, even though it is addicting and is built to be addicting, I have to take ownership over. It is my job to find a way to navigate that addiction. My third elective is called Discipline is Destiny. I named it this because there is a book I'm currently reading called Discipline is Destiny, and so for this course, my job is to read that book and start to apply it and let it motivate my life. I've realized recently how important discipline is, discipline over motivation, because we're not always going to be motivated, we're not always going to feel like it, and so I want to be a little more disciplined in my life. The discipline is destiny also kind of serves those other classes right. A social media detox is served by discipline, and so it are these systems getting these in place. So all my courses kind of work together and I imagine, like At the end of a month, if I've really focused on intentional days, stepping away from social media and setting rules around it and then using discipline to do those other two things, in a month this will have shifted some of the big parts of my life that feel a little chaotic. Okay, so those are my courses and I already told you I'm doing those around the moon cycle. So four weeks from now, that is when I will reevaluate these courses and then, at the end of those four weeks, this is when I'll like, quote unquote, grade myself or evaluate if it's time for me to move on, like, have I mastered this? Is it time to move on and maybe just graduate, quote unquote from the class, or be done with the class and pick something new? Or do I need to continue on and work to some more mastery? Or maybe I'll stay enrolled in some of the classes you know, enrolled, quote unquote. Or maybe I'll remove some classes or maybe I'll add in another class. So now let's break down how to determine your classes and you are 100% free to take the classes I'm doing and say yes and then put your own little goals or syllabus, your own little course description underneath your own titles. One way to decide what courses electives you want to take is by asking the question what one thing, if it were improved or different in your life, would make the most change in your day to day living or overall well being. So ask again what one thing, if it were, improved or different in your life, would make the most change in your day to day living or overall well being. Now, the fun thing is this doesn't have to just be like boring things. This could literally be so many things. Whatever you want, maybe there's a skill you wanted to learn. That's one of your electives. Like you want to learn to bake, or you want to learn to cook, or you want to learn how to build something. Let that be your elective. Or you want to go on adventures, or you want to do a sport, or you want to learn an instrument, or you want to work out a different way those could be your electives. I'm going to give you a list of areas just to help jog your brain and get get the ideas spinning and let you pull from these to start planning your electives. Here are different areas of your life career or business, finances, health and fitness, friendships, family, parenting, your partner, love, community, personal growth and development, learning skills, fun and recreation, contribution and purpose, mindset, spirituality, rest yes, rest. This is a list of areas in which you could focus your life. I'm sure there's more you can think of. So, to start off, you'll choose one area or one thing in your life that, if it were improved or different, would make the most change in your life right now. The one thing pick one, and then, if it feels fun and like you have space, you could pick another one thing or another two things, so anywhere from one to three electives for your back to school, and these should feel exciting. Exciting because if I were to master this, then blank would change about my life. Or if this were to become a normal in my life, then blank would change about my life. It's exciting because of the possibility and it's okay for there to be a little bit of fear and nerves around doing something new. That's part of the first day of school too. That's part of going back to school is this balance of excitement and nerves. So for me, as social media detox is a challenge for me, the reading discipline is destiny feels fun for me, and then the creating systems for me really helps me feel like my life would be improved and actually would feel fun because I would have more space and ease in my life. And space in my life and ease in my life feels really fun to me. So getting systems in place feels fun to me as well. I'm also a Capricorn and we're very like. We like systems, we like structure, and so it feels fun to me, even if that's something that doesn't feel fun to you, feels fun to me, so adding in things that feel exciting and being okay if some of them make you a little nervous. Here are some more ideas of courses or electives. You could take the first one a real morning routine or a doable morning routine and work on creating a morning routine that actually works for your life. Maybe it's five minutes, maybe it's 10, maybe it's longer, but if you know that a morning routine would set you up for a better day to day life, maybe that's the course for you. Maybe another name for a course you could take is workouts that work, where you focus on finding workouts that are the right length for your lifestyle, that are enjoyable ish for you and that are scheduled daily. Maybe you know that moving your body is really important and that is something that needs to become a course, an elective, a focus in your life. Something else this one feels fun for me because this is something I'll probably an elective I'll take in the future adventures for home buddies. I like to stay home, but I also like adventure, but for me, my comfort zone is just staying home, but I feel really alive when I'm out and trying new things or going new places. So having an elective on planning a weekly or even every other week adventure for me or for Brian and myself or for our whole family to go and experience Maybe it's a hike or a new place, whatever it is adding some adventure and fun. And then the last idea I have which of course, I have tons of ideas when I'm trying just to share a few with you is just a personal growth course where you do like I'm doing and you pick a book that you're wanting to read. It could be for enjoyment Maybe you haven't read a novel in a long, long time or it could be self-help or whatever you'd like and you set a deadline of when you're going to read that book, just like you would if you were in an English class. You need to have this chapter read by this date, this one read by this date, and actually set a framework around you reading the book that you want to read. Sometimes the things we want to do actually fall away because we feel like, just because we want to do them, we don't really need to do them. They're not important, and that's just not true. Oftentimes the things we really want to do are the things that are actually very important to us moving forward in our lives or living a life that we enjoy. So if you take one of the things you want, like I really want to read this novel, and you create a course around that, an elective, a timeframe around when you will accomplish it, you will read this many pages a day and structure yourself in to make yourself do the things you're wanting to do and let it feel fun, let it feel motivating, let it feel exciting, just like the first day of school and going back to school. One thing to focus on is to make sure that these electives, these courses, these back to school things you're choosing, feel fun and exciting for you or expansive. So sometimes things don't feel fun or exciting to me, but I know it will expand what I can hold or expand my viewpoint or just make my life feel more full and whole. So if it feels that way, then it's a good thing. The energy and vibe going into this will be best when it feels like this is moving you towards something you want versus something you don't want. So when you go to school and you take a course, you're moving towards the end of that course or moving towards mastery of the subject. You're not moving away from like being stupid. That's not the goal. You're never like I go to school so that I'm less stupid. No, you're going to school so that you can learn this next thing. Or you choose the electives because maybe you love theater and you want to be on stage. So let the future vision of what your life can be help pull you forward, versus just not doing something because it's not comfortable or you just don't want to. Our vision of the future can be very inspiring for us and give us a lot of energy to move towards our future goals. And to move towards our future goals or the future version of ourselves, takes us making daily action and making changes. When we choose an elective or a course for a certain amount of time, it gives us this like zoom in focus time, so it doesn't feel like it's going on forever, but it also becomes intentional because it needs to be done by a certain date, or it becomes the focus for a smaller period of time. Then your question is what do you hope the end result will be, and how will you know when you've made it, just like if you were to take a course at school or an elective. There's an end result at the end of that semester and there is a grade or a scale to let you know if you've made it, if you've mastered it. So in your courses, in your electives, the fun things you're choosing for back to school, how will you know when you've made it? Or what will the end result be? For example, for me, intentional days 101, the end result for me will be a food prep system that feels like it's on flow, a chore system back in place and everyone knows what they're doing, and then the weekly schedule planned in advance. That becomes part of our lives. So I know that I will be planning the weeks much more intentionally and it's become a habit for me. For the social media detox elective, for me, I will know that I have made it when my social media usage is intentionally controlled by me and not by the people who create the social media apps. So when I'm controlling my usage versus my usage being on autopilot, that's when I know that I'll have mastered that course. And for my final course Discipline is Destiny I will know that I've finished that and I've been successful. When I finish the book and I begin to apply to my life a life of discipline, even when I don't want to, even my non -negotiables that I'm completing, even when there's no motivation, the doing what needs to be done, no matter my mood in some cases, is a huge thing for me to grow on in my life, I've really become someone who likes to like live out a flow like what I feel like doing, and that is good, and at the same time, having some discipline is very important. So being very disciplined with what I'm going to do this podcast, for example, is somewhere in my life where I'm being very disciplined. It will be done every week. I'm not worried about how I feel about it. I'm going to do it because I know it's what I truly want to do, even when I'm not feeling motivated. So, developing more of that discipline in my life, that's when I know that I've made it. And then the next thing to ask is when will you reevaluate adding in or graduating from a class or an elective that you've chosen? For me it's going to be in a month. For you it might be longer. We've kind of talked about this. So this is the back to school plan for you and I hope this feels like a fun way for you to like create courses and opportunities for yourself to move forward in a specific timeline so that it doesn't feel endless. But there also is that excitement in the fun that comes from going back to school and I'll do an update podcast on how mine went in a month, how my courses went, if I graduated them, if I'm still working on them, and then if you need some accountability, dm me your course names Also. I'd love to hear them. Love some new ideas for my next, my next electives. Dm them to me and then let me know when you want me to check in and I'll check in with you, happy to do that, so that we can all hold each other accountable. And that's it for today. I hope that if you have kiddos and they are going back to school, that you have peace, that you feel excited for them and that you can feel excited for yourself as well. I wish you all safety and health and a life that feels good. I'll see you next time on the podcast on whatever with Heather Bye.

Bringing Back the Back-to-School Spirit
Choosing Electives for Personal Growth
Creating a Back to School Plan
Excitement and Accountability in Back-to-School