Exceeding Your Surge Capacity

[00:00:00] But I wanna ask you, what happens when we all come together to make beauty and peace louder than hate and war? What if your voice still matters? What if making that art is the only way that we can show up and say, this is what peace is. I want you to keep making more art. Don't let evil win by darkening your heart and taking your voice away.

[00:00:25] Keep sharing and promoting your truth through creativity. Show the world that democracy and freedom are supreme, and exercise that right, because if we hide our light now, if we stop doing what we're meant to do, then it only adds to the tragedy.

[00:00:49] You're listening to Unfold with Kellee Wynne. This is an unpolished, imperfect, and totally honest podcast, and I'm talking to all the artist creatives. Visionaries and change makers who wanna live a life by design and not by default. If you're ready to have thought-provoking, eye-opening, and heart-centered conversations that explore the stories that made us who we are and break through the boundaries of expectations, then you are in the right place.

[00:01:22] Well, hello again. Welcome to Unfold with Kellee Wynne. It's me. Just wanna let you know I'm okay. You're okay. We're all going to be okay. We're all feeling this mounting anxiety and it's unprecedented. And we're tired of living in unprecedented times. War pandemic elections, relentless news, weather extremes, living in close quarters, missing family and friends.

[00:01:51] Wishing for something normal, but, and just when? 2022, you think that you're gonna have a somewhat normal year? Damn it all. I want you to give yourself some grace at this moment in time, and I have a couple of things I wanted to talk to you about in this podcast episode. It's kind of a series and talking about burnout and accountability, and today I want to reach into this idea of exceeding your surge capacity and then also the choices that we make as we set up to fulfill all of our big dreams and hopes and.

[00:02:30] So you've probably been asking yourself if it's even right to be creating right now, or to offer your work for sale, or to continue pushing forward with your big hopes and dreams for this beautiful, you know, aligned, remarkable business that you wanna create. . And yet for some reason, every time we set off to do these things, it just seems like the world is so utterly fucked all the time.

[00:02:55] And how can you possibly do something for yourself when there's so much tragedy, so much hopelessness, in all honesty, it's really hard to, to wrap your head around this dichotomy. But I wanna ask you what happens when we all come together to make beauty and peace louder? then hate and war. What if your voice still matters?

[00:03:20] What if making that art is the only way that we can show up and say, this is what peace is. I want you to keep making more art. Don't let evil win by darkening your heart and taking your voice away. Keep sharing and promoting your truth through creativity. Show the world that democracy and freedom are supreme, and exercise that right, because if we hide our light now, if we stop doing what we're meant to do, then it only adds to the tragedy.

[00:03:48] I have this quote I wanna read to you from Tony Morrison, and I've read this quote many times over the past several years. Is. Over the last several years, we've had one big thing after another, and I think that she really speaks it better than I ever could about the importance of us as artists continuing to do the work that we are destined to do.

[00:04:09] And this is what Tony Morrison says. This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity. No need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do. That is how civilizations heal. I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence like failure.

[00:04:38] Chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge, even wisdom like art. And that is from Tony Morrison, who you can replace the words speaking and writing with painting and making, but it is all the same. This is how civilizations heal. So if you're feeling the way I'm feeling at this moment, you are probably struggling with what to do next.

[00:05:03] Wondering if making art or running a creative business is the right thing to do and looking at the bigger picture and trying to figure out how to move forward. At this point, your surge capacity is probably completely depleted and you cannot expect to be yourself at the top of your game. So what do I mean by surge capacity?

[00:05:21] It is the mental and physical ability to adapt to intense, stressful situations like natural disasters or the pandemic. But usually they only occur for a short period of time, and now we are living in one disaster after another with seemingly no break. So what happens when you struggle to renew your capacity, but the emergency phase has now become everyday living.

[00:05:49] I know it's really challenging for me as well because we're taking a look at how we go on finding normalcy, finding a regular routine, and yet every week we wake up to something new that we need to adjust to. And so I'm gonna tell you, What my saving grace has been over the last few years, and I'm saying few years because even though it's been two years of a pandemic, we've had many years of other things piled one after the other.

[00:06:18] And that is, as I've come to a place of realizing now get, hold on, hold on. I know you're not gonna believe this, but I have no control over anything and neither do you. We have no control over the world outside of our own personal sovereignty. I have no control over what my family chooses to do. I have no control over what my neighbors choose to do and whether they are gonna side.

[00:06:44] The side of helping all or being selfish. I have no control over big businesses deciding that they would rather have money than destroy the earth. I have no control over a homicidal, homicidal, suicidal maniac who's aging and wants to just throw caution to everything and just go all in on attacking a sovereign nation, and who knows what he's gonna choose to do next, but yet, I have.

[00:07:14] Over that. So the more I spend time, time worrying about it and trying to control it and dimming my light and putting my art on hold and putting my life on hold and putting my dreams on hold, the more he wins, the more I lose. The more you lose, the more you try to control the things that are outside of your being.

[00:07:33] The only thing that we have is our own personal thoughts and actions. . And so that's why I'm sitting here and asking you how are you living your life right now? How are you making choices? I know I've noticed that some artists paint more when they need to relieve stress and others shut down completely and have a hard time being creative.

[00:07:53] And I'm usually in the second camp. Stress, worry, anxiety, heartache. They all have kept me from painting regularly, but I wanna look at what we are actually choosing to do or not to do daily that's really impacting us. Besides these global events, let's talk about the decisions we make that. How we live, work, create, and love.

[00:08:15] Let's talk about what you actually have control over. What I actually have control over. So when I get to this point in the year and I'm looking at the choices I've already made, when I set off on this wild admission, a, a big to-do over launching this podcast and showing up more authentically and somehow here I am, the end of February and now in the beginning of March.

[00:08:43] Realizing I'm sliding back into old habits and everything of the world is piling on me and I'm allowing it to affect me, and I'm not making choices that lead me to my ultimate happiness. So I'm asking in this episode for a reset. As many of you are probably struggling with a lot of the same things, and my message really struck you when I started off with this podcast of living a Life by Design and not by default.

[00:09:17] And yet somehow, even when we know it and we hear it, and it rings true, and it soaks right into the deep of our soul, we still sit on our phones and eat the junky food and don't move our bodies and commune with nature and say our prayers and love one another like we plan on doing. How? How do we fall back into these bad habits?

[00:09:40] Much like any year, for me, I had big plans and ambitions that only probably a superhero could have accomplished. . My word for 2022 was growth, and I think it slapped me in the face a few too many times. I mean, none of us could have really predicted the major turn of events of these last two years, but.

[00:10:02] Along with it, there has been adequate opportunity for me to readjust and reevaluate everything again. And again, growth in January of 2022 looks very different than what it does now. In March, I was really ready to take on the world, but I've come to realize, ha, that it looks a lot more like hustle than alignment and that I've also taken into account that what it really requires to live a mentally healthy life.

[00:10:31] When your surge capacity is overrun, you know, one hour of work oftentimes is three hours of your energy. And so when you want to be creating a thriving business and live a creative life and not one that runs you ragged, you really need to look at what's essential, which this is one of. Favorite books of all time, uh, essentialism by Greg McOwen, and it really reset me last year, and yet somehow I feel like I need to read it again.

[00:11:05] Because the reason that I'm on the verge of burning out one more time isn't because someone is forcing me to do too much. Nope, it's self-made. Cause I have a habit of following every idea, impulse, societal expectation. Must do, should do. Chasing my tail just because it, it's what I think I need to do to be successful and not taking into account my surge capacity, but I know better.

[00:11:35] I've been here before and I'm not really making the wisest choices. The irony is that doing all the things all the time does not actually lead to success. You know, it leads to burnout, it leads to misery, and it leads to missing out on some of the things that are far more important than numbers of a business, how much income you make, or, um, what you are able to achieve.

[00:12:03] It's missing out on the success factors of the deep relationships that you have, your mental wellbeing, your healthy body, and building lasting relationships with the people that you love. No matter what level of success you ch achieve, you do begin to wonder if the daily grind and constant hustle. What you're really looking for, and especially if it's taking everything from you and leaving nothing for you or your family.

[00:12:31] And so that's where I am right now, back in that same place where I'm asking myself now how do I, how did I get here? And how do I keep from digging in deeper with all that's going on in this world and all the big hopes and dreams that I've set out to accomplish? How can I pace? Better. I know that my bandwidth for anything in the last two years has been nearly non-existent.

[00:12:54] It takes days to accomplish something that should really just take hours. And this is how I know I'm off track when my focus for creativity, planning, communication, they are starting to dwindle. I know that. I misaligned with my goals. I oftentimes will have short periods of massive creative output, like making my super bloom course or building up this podcast or my super excitement at the beginning of the year of showing up more authentically me, but as, as much as it comes out with a big burst of fire, oftentimes will fizzle almost as quickly, and then I find myself getting lost on my phone as a distraction and I'm not making art.

[00:13:39] Unless it's for work, I'm not being present for my own life and yeah. So I have to ask myself, how did I get here again? Anyone else relate to this in this completely chaotic time that we're living in? Yes, I thought so. It's been especially rough, but I'm here to tell you what I know. Deep down inside one belief that I wholehearted.

[00:14:03] No, this truth and I often ignore, and that's personal sovereignty. I am responsible for me. You are responsible for you and your wellbeing as well. So, and that just comes right back to what can you control yourself? Nothing on the outside. Only thing that you have that you can control are the decisions you make and the thoughts that you think and the truth.

[00:14:27] I am so over myself, friends. I am sick of my own shit, . I am tired of making excuses. I am not living my best life and it is my responsibility to change it. Um, but the good thing is, is I'm able to recognize that I'm not on the right path, and that I can challenge myself and my beliefs and my actions so that I can step in the right direction.

[00:14:51] At the very same time, I can also give myself grace. Under the circumstances of this total emotional surge that we are under on a constant basis with the external things in this world. So because I wanna take control of my own destiny, there are several things that I ask myself. And this is so that I can lean myself down the path of the goals that I set for myself.

[00:15:18] These big goals that I had talked about in my prologue. If you go back and listen to prologue three, I have a real extensive list of goals that I want to achieve, and some of them are very, Mental and emotional, and some of them are physical, like making a million dollars by the time I turn 50 or hiking the Himalayas, the foothills of the Himalayas.

[00:15:39] These are big goals, but here's the thing to reach big goals, even monetary goals and even physical goals like that and and whatnot. It's not that I'm saying, oh, you've gotta hustle, hustle. Do more, do more. It's that my actions need to be more aligned on a daily basis. So here are the, the four things that I'm asking myself right now, and I want you to maybe write them down, think about it yourself, and then let this be present to you every day so that you can make your small slight improvements as well.

[00:16:16] It's incremental, it's not all at once. So number one, how can I enjoy life more now? Now in this present, right? How can I enjoy life now? Because if we think that happiness is on the other side of accomplishing our long list of goals, Then we are never gonna be happy. Happiness doesn't happen when we reach our destination.

[00:16:41] Happiness is the destination. How can I be present more now? And I wanna tell you something that I find incredibly tragic about my life. And it's a little thing, but it is incredibly tragic. Every year, spring comes, and I think this is my favorite season of all, because the weather is finally getting warm.

[00:17:01] The insects haven't come up yet, blossoms everywhere. The air feels so fresh, and it's so exciting. And I, I love April. I love May. I love June. The lightning bugs come out. I'm gonna soak it all in. I am not gonna let work and the to-do list get in the way of enjoying being present. That experience. , how can I enjoy my life more now? Go out and do it. And a at every year work has taken priority over enjoyment. Of what is actually there, the simplest of all things. We're not talking about enjoying something fancier, luxurious, although those things should be enjoyed as well. I'm talking about enjoying the process of making art, enjoying the process of watching your children grow, enjoying simple things like a meal outside Al Fresco.

[00:17:58] Really enjoying what we have at this present moment. How the, uh, paint smells when you walk into your studio, how your dogs roll in the dirt. Like silly fools like this, these are my dogs on a daily basis. How do we enjoy our life more now, not later, not when we've accomplished something? How do we enjoy our life more now?

[00:18:22] And that leads us to question number two. How can I be present for my own? How can I be present in this moment? Like actually paying attention to what's in front of me? Cause I am so guilty of distraction of the to-do list of, and really in all honesty, and you've heard me talk about this, so we'll be an entire podcast episode at some point.

[00:18:47] The screen, the phone. . I mean, I, I had to delete TikTok off my phone this week because I thought, I hate TikTok. I never use TikTok. And then one day I found myself scrolling TikTok and then I couldn't stop that evil beast. And I still do that with Instagram as well. How many hours are you gonna let go? And this like little message came to me in my head, every minute counts.

[00:19:13] every minute. How are we gonna choose it? So with number two, and how I can be more present with my life, it means turning off my phone. I mean, literally putting time blocks on it, reading, which I am starting to do far more often. Go to bed with a book, wake up in the morning with a book, listening to music, having good conversations.

[00:19:35] Making art. I mean like, you know, not just for a course, not just to teach you, not just to show up live, but to actually go in there and play and explore Just how I encourage you to do. How can I be more present for my life? How can you be more present for your life? And this comes in small little ways.

[00:19:55] This isn't something big, this isn't some big miracle that we're asking. It's little things to be. Present. Number three, what can I do to keep from sliding back into old habits? Well, this is where we need accountability. So whether it's asking your spouse or your best friend or a family member, but be careful with this because when they're close to your life, you don't wanna create friction.

[00:20:20] But if there's something like just one part of. That you can do in tandem. For example, my middle son has set out on a destiny to lose a lot of weight before he turns 20. He's already lost 30 pounds and he is doing it all on his own, and he says every day it would be so much easier if I had a partner to do this with.

[00:20:40] And yet I keep making excuses cuz I'm so busy and tired and I just wanna keep eating all the sugar in order to get through it. And here I am. Not meeting up to my own personal expectations, and yet what can I do to keep from sliding back into old habits? Have a partner and my own son who will encourage me and I can encourage him.

[00:20:59] What about something like taking on too much work? Well, that's where partnerships in a business coach or a life coach can help you set healthier boundaries. What about a fitness? Sometimes you have to ask for help. Sometimes you have to set boundaries. Sometimes it's as simple as putting an alarm on your phone that says, I will do this now.

[00:21:23] I your time limit has run up. You are not allowed to use Instagram anymore today. So these are some of the things you need to do to keep from sliding back into old habits. Another thing that I like to do is to keep a journal. Um, and this is just more of a simple journal. This isn't like the creative exploration journal that we've been talking about in the past that, but episode this is more of a, a personal like note notations of setting my intentions for the week.

[00:21:53] Um, making it very clear what I'm gonna work on in small steps rather than the big hole enchilada. It might be something as simple as three days this week I'm gonna walk outside and walk the block. Cuz if it seems too much to have to go for a. Hour and a half long hike, and I'm never gonna get over that hurdle.

[00:22:12] Sometimes it's something far more simple as that. I will read 50 pages in a book that is not about business or self-help . These are things that help me keep accountable, and that's just reviewing my goals and continuing to press forward. . And number four, what excuses am I making and where can I give myself grace?

[00:22:33] So these are kind of like a tandem little thing where we're gonna look on both sides of the coin. What excuses do I keep making? For example, I just said, I'm tired, I'm overworked. I'm gonna just go ahead and shove all these peeps in my mouth and please don't judge me, you guys. But I love peeps. I love marshmallows.

[00:22:50] And if they've been sitting around for a couple of weeks, I love them even more. And when I have that afternoon crash where I'm like, I can hardly go on. I have so much work to do, please let me eat all of the peeps. And these are excuses I'm making for myself. When I know that if I went and cut up an apple and had it with, you know, a cup of tea, I would be able to give myself that extra little care without destroying my health.

[00:23:16] So these are excuses I'm making for myself, but I can also give myself grace and say, Hey, it's okay that we've made these choices. We just keep making better choices the next time. It's okay if what you really need today is to just sit on the couch and watch a movie, or read a good book or snuggle with your dogs.

[00:23:36] There are times where we have to discern, where are you making excuse or do you need to give yourself permission to rest and heal? But oftentimes, if I look at my life, I realize I'm making excuses for myself more often than I am need. To give myself grace and that's just me. This is me knowing that saying no to going to the hike is really more about me not getting over my own mental challenges with exercise, with taking the time to leave the house and like that's a whole nother story in and of itself.

[00:24:12] It's a challenge to. To put down the phone and to put down the screen and to not do one more email. And when you feel like, if I don't get this done now, or I know I can't enjoy myself, here's another little thing. I am interrupting myself to say, how often do you say I can't sit down to enjoy myself to do something?

[00:24:32] I can't do something productive. I can't work at my goals and my dreams when I haven't finished this damn to-do list. Those are excuses people. It is an excuse that you can't go out for a walk every day. even when you have a long to-do list, because guess what? The whole world isn't gonna fall over cuz you didn't get something done.

[00:24:52] I promise you that. I promise myself that. So it's finding this balance between making excuses and holding yourself accountable for that, and also giving yourself grace when the world does seem overwhelming when you do have personal troubles that need to be mended and healed when you're sick and when you just need a little.

[00:25:14] So it's a balance between the two. But if you keep pushing yourself to work so hard, you're gonna burn out and need to just sit around on the couch. So this is where we work towards balancing each of these different parts of the the scale. I feel like I'm truly being guided in the right direction. This year, something much deeper is happening.

[00:25:38] Um, that's the reason that I have this podcast with Unfold and I've set really important intentions and big goals so that when I noticed the backslide, like has happened in the last few weeks, that overwhelm started to set in. And the anxiety is mounting. I know, and I can adjust and get back on track more swiftly, and that's what I'm here to help you do as well.

[00:26:02] Lord knows none of us need to burn out at this point. I've already done that once and it took a lot to get back on my feet again, and this energy that I came in punching and kicking with in January, I wanna keep it going. I am excited about the future, even when it's hard outside, even when we have the threat of war, even when there are floods and fires, even when we have a pandemic.

[00:26:29] even when I struggle to maintain relationships with friends and family, even when I don't know what's gonna happen next, just one or two years down the road with my children and their health and their wellbeing and their school and all these normal personal things that we struggle with, even when my surge capacity is completely depleted, I still have hope.

[00:26:51] I still am excited for how the future's gonna unfold. There are still so many beautiful, good, wonderful things happening in this world right at this moment. Hold on to that and pray for all the things that are needing of our love and our heart and our soul to help get through it. Listen, I've given myself grace and permission to be where I am at in this moment.

[00:27:14] But it no longer serves me to live in mediocrity. I am not even sure how I'm going to do things differently, but I've given myself that list of four to come back to again and again to ask myself questions and get back on track. I just know that 2022 is not gonna be more of the same, not for me, not anymore.

[00:27:35] It's time too. The fire. Thank you so much for joining me on Unfold with Kellee Wynne. I hope that there is something in this message that is helpful to you to keep going strong with your creativity, with your dreams, with your art. It's needed in this world more than it's ever been needed before. Keep making more art.

[00:27:56] Put that joy and beauty into this world. Let it reverberate into. The cells of every living being on this earth. Put your prayers out there, whatever kind of prayers you pray, and let's see if we can't connect all of humanity with just a little bit more happiness and joy. Thank you so much and meet you here next time and Unfold with Kellee Wynne.

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