Time For A Heart To Heart

Posted: October 18, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Hello, friends! I think it’s time we had a little heart to heart.

I mentioned earlier that I have not been feeling too well. Not only have I felt like my body is fighting off illness and that all I want to do is sleep for 24 hours straight, but I have also felt on the verge of an anxiety attack and like something isn’t quite right.

Yesterday afternoon, Peter & I seriously discussed me quitting the blog.

When I have a passion for something, I go all out. You may have noticed that. You may also have noticed that I have a lot of passions.

I have a passion for my faith.

I have a passion for my family.

I have a passion for a healthy lifestyle.

I have a passion for sharing my story and blogging.

Most of the time, I can give 100% to each of those things without hesitation. Most of the time, I can juggle the responsibilities that come with each seamlessly. Most of the time, I have no problem and manage it all with a smile on my face.

Then, I noticed something. I give and give and give to each of those passions. Nothing brings me down for awhile. But inevitably, I crash and burn.

Peter and I took a closer look at this cycle and, it appears, about once every 3-4 weeks I reach that threshold and go from one extreme to the other. From having it all sorted out to barely feeling like I can keep my head above water. The water being the tears that drop from my eyes at nary a moment’s notice.

Whenever I reach this point, I doubt myself as a mother. Whenever I reach this point, a lot of my healthy habits break down – either with stress eating or feeling too exhausted to workout. Whenever I reach this point, I get angry with myself and lose patience with others. This can not and will not go on.

A lot of topics in my devotional readings, study groups at church, and even just in my heart during prayer, have really forced me to wonder about my own passions.

When looking at my passions, it’s obvious that 3 of the 4 are non-negotiable parts of my life. That left me negotiating the blog.

After much thought, I can’t deny any of those passions of mine. They each bring something to my life which I cannot give up on. So, I won’t. Yes, I still plan to blog. I simply have to analyze where I spend my time on the work and adjust as necessary – likely a lot of the behind the scenes and side work associated with it.

But that isn’t even the main point of this post.

This post is NOT another reflection on my blogging habits or a plea for feedback on what to do. It is not asking for comments to assure me to keep blogging.

If anything, this post is a plea from me to you. A plea to take a close look at your life. Really take the time to consider your goals. Pay attention to how you spend your time. Determine if you ever feel you don’t have enough to give to the things that matter most. This post is not a plea for my benefit. It is a plea for yours. A plea to live the life that matches your values.

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99 Comments to “Time For A Heart To Heart”
  1. Anna Crouch says:

    Tina,
    I know you’re not looking for affirmation and advice on this but I still feel like I need to tell you how much your blogging has made a difference in my life! It’s not so much the day to day stuff that has impacted me (although I do love reading about!) but it’s those posts that make YOU all sweaty and nervous when you push “publish” that help me grow, change, become a better woman, and a better wife. You inspire me in my running and the progress I’ve made since fueling myself properly again. You bring proper perspective when my mind is all hay-wire. Your posts are divinely inspired many times…and are focused on exactly what I need to hear. Because of all of this, I would be very sad to see you go! However, you NEED to do what’s best for you. If you remember my guest post, what I’ve learned is that sometimes you need to put yourself before others! Much of my time was spent to benefit others, help others, make their lives easier and further the ministry of my church. However, it started to become too much, bog me down, stress me out, and cause anxiety. At that point, I had to put myself first, despite what it meant for other people sometimes. That is what you need to do. Yes, you inspire people, yes you bring entertainment and enlightenment. And yes, you inspire many and change their lives. But ultimately, if YOU are not fulfilled and in your best state mentally and emotionally, then YOU come first. I hope that liberates you to make all the necessary changes, without feeling guilt. Know that you are loved and valued, but have the liberty to do what you need to do.

  2. Denise says:

    Tina – Faith and Family should always be first in your life and the rest will fall into place.

    You are a good mother you have faith therefore your fitness and blog no matter what will honor your faith and family. You see it is a circle that circles around with the eb and flow of your life.

    Please keep my girl in your prayers – this program is sometimes overwhelming and she can use all the warriors around.

    • denise says:

      I forgot to mention that you girls are way tooooo hard on yourselves. It seems to be striving for the illusion of perfection whether it is with your body your blog or your diet you have got to relax and live life, slow down and let life happen, don’t try to do soooooooooo much all the time!!!!!

  3. Corndog says:

    Tina, I am going to just throw something out there and you can roll your eyes and disregard and I wouldn’t blame you a bit but here it is. If I were you, I would consider the possibility that something is happening with your hormones that makes you feel so awful every 3-4 weeks. I too notice that I can be sailing along, feeling great about most things and then WHAM I hate myself and everything about my life. It is very very frustrating! I do believe though that it is related to my hormones. Just a thought. You probably are giving 110% to too much though and recognizing that will help you ease back and take it easy on yourself. Good Luck!!

  4. I’ll be praying for you to find the balance and peace you need in your life :D

    I recently was getting way too stressed so had to take a break for awhile… and my blog was waiting for me when I was ready! We’ll be here when you return if you decide you need to take a little breather also!!

  5. Hilary says:

    As always, you are so brave and thanks for sharing! I think all bloggers go through this to some extent (and they’re probably lying if they say that they don’t). Sometimes it’s important to step back and evaluate the hows/whys in life.

    I know I’m going through some similar thoughts, so I appreciate your honesty. Keep on keepin’ on, and do whatever you have to do to pursue your passions in a way that fulfills and not drains you, and brings glory to God.

  6. Hi Tina, thank you so much for sharing this post! I think you are amazing and so inspirational. I hope that you are able to find balance with all that is important to you, but I can completely relate with it being challenging. I am relatively new to blogging, and it is something that I love to do and has made me reconsider how else I want to spend my time. I have recently thought a lot about what my priorities should be right now, and what will make me truly happy
    thank you for sharing your thoughts and emotions during what seems to be a stressful time for you, I have realized that through tough times, things always get better:)

  7. Emma says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts Tina. It is a great reminder to analyze my life and look at the balance. Honestly I don’t know how you do everything you do and I hope whatever decisions you make bring you happiness. Your mental, physical, and emotional well being for yourself, kids, and family is what matters…blog or no blog I wish you the best.

  8. Wow it can’t get more raw than this and you know how much i love your words. Actually its ironic because is my own life i have been thinking about the energy i have been putting into different areas of my life and really taking an honest look at which ones are working, what i may be neglecting, or what i know i need to let go of. Even as you realized, just a simple topic can hold so much weight!

    xoxo <3

  9. Coco says:

    Very interesting timing, as I am thinking about how much time I am spending on work these days. 8-6 at the office, then at least another 2 hours at night, and 8 hours over the weekend. I just don’t know how to rein it in right now.

    Our Gospel this weekend was the “Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s …” Our priest had an interesting take on it, relating to how we spend our time. She posted her sermon here:

    http://reverendelizabeth.blogspot.com/2011/10/in-god-we-trust-well-sort-of.html?spref=fb

  10. Tina…I want to fly down to GA and give you a big ol’ hug right now!! *interwebz huggg*
    Every now and then I feel like this, too, as I’ve mentioned to you before. I think it comes down to a few things: circumstance, attitude, and hormones, heh. It’s crazy how one day I’ll feel like I’m on top of the world, tackling it all. Then the next week I feel like I’m just spinning my wheels.
    Either way, definitely a topic that should be addressed! Much love, love! <3

  11. Tina, I always love you for your honesty. I understand how you feel too. It’s so frustrating to feel this way, but it’s also great to know that your other passions will help you get through this. You have the amazing support of God, your family, a healthy lifestyle and your readers.
    I appreciate this post also as a way to reflect on my own passions. Sometimes they can get pushed down on the list, but it’s important to always make sure we are living the lives we want to live.

  12. Katina says:

    I so feel you and like many others have said, I thought I was alone!!! Do what works for you and your family and that may change from day to day!!!

  13. Brittany says:

    I love how you are so open on your blog. I understand how you can get stressed, I do to! Just do whatever you feel is right for you and listen to your gut instinct. You are an amazing person & blogger but you need to think about what is best for you and your family. Which of course, you already do! I wish you the best of luck with everything but I am glad you will still be blogging. I look forward to reading your posts everyday!!
    This is also so true to me because I need to focus on my goals. I sometimes get caught up in what I feel like is important to pay attention to when there are other things that need more attention! Thanks for this :)

  14. This is a great reminder Tina…one of my favorite sayings is “Be Present” and not only does it remind me to focus on the amazing things going on in my life right now, but it makes me think of what’s most important to me…I hope and pray you figure out whatever it is that’s best for you and your family!

  15. Tina, I love you and your blog so very much and would be deeply saddened if you decided to quit blogging…but I would be even more sad if you kept doing it and it made you unhappy. What matters most is what makes YOU happy and fulfills you most. You have helped me on a personal level in more ways than one and I can’t tell you how much I’ve appreciated our emails together…you’re such an inspiration and an amazing wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend. Whatever decision you choose I fully support, and know that you’ve made such a positive impact in my life :)

  16. Heidi Nicole says:

    Blogging is a ton of work…and quite frankly I’m glad you are able to take a step back and realize that it is the one thing you can let go.

    Do what works best for you, life happens and what really matters is that your kids aren’t feeling the pressure! :)

  17. marie says:

    is so ironc you post this because i have been feeling the same exact way with various aspects of my life!!! for the past week or so i have been in tears, constant anxiety attacks, but feeling i am good enough in certain aspects of my life, etc… i am definitely going to take your advice and reevaluate my goals and arrange my time according. this has opened my eyes, and i thank you for that =) hang in there! whatever you decided to do will be whats meant to be =) i look forward to some possible solutions you come across =)

  18. Karolina says:

    It’s so easy to throw ourselves 100% into everything in life. Unfortunately, that doesn’t often work out…at least well. Remember that blogging isn’t all or nothing. If you need to skip a day, then skip a day. Just post one little thing in the day. Choose to share one “big” thing from the day instead of a few posts worth of things. It’s easy to get caught up into “all or nothing” thinking, but unfortunately health and balance doesn’t really exist there- it exists in the shades of gray. It sounds like you’re processing well. Take care of yourself first, along with your family & faith.

  19. Ela says:

    What a great way to turn around your own struggle! I couldn’t agree more that it’s vitally important to evaluate where your time and energy is going. I think it’s wonderful that Peter and you can have discussions like that.

    One small thing: if you’re overwhelmed and feel too exhausted to work out, that isn’t necessarily abandoning your healthy passion, is it? It seems like you work out very hard and consistently–a rest day once in a while, even an unplanned one, doesn’t sound like a disaster?
    love
    Ela

  20. STUFT Mama says:

    Tina- Holy cow. This hits home. My mom made some really hurtful comments to me yesterday about how I prioritize my time. It wasn’t fun to hear, but was a bit of a wake-up call. Follow your heart and the “lighted path” and we’ll be here following you for the ride. You are an inspiration to us all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hugs!

  21. Faith and family (and, our own health and sanity!) is what it is ALL about! I took a break from my blog too for that very reason. Sometimes it seemed like I was living my life to play out in my blog on screen instead of truly living it. It takes courage for that reflection and good luck in your journey.

  22. Mandy says:

    You are always very level headed in terms of your priorities in life. You do give everything your best, but you know when to step back too. Love you girl!

  23. I’m sorry you’ve been feeling so overwhelmed. It seems you have your priorities in order though. I know you’ll make the right decision, no matter what it is.

  24. Tina says:

    Tina,
    I will be praying for your guidance. I truly LOVE your blog and this hits home to me today as I am run down from just the business of life as a Mom of one and a very active participant in our church and worship ministry, attending women’s studies, and other devotions throughout the week…working a full time job and trying to be a good wife…but what I miss the mark most on is doing what makes me truly happy. I think we get soo busy sometimes that we loose that joy that we should have in doing the things we LOVE and are PASSIONATE about. I just pray that God will give you direction and guidance as to what direction he wants you to go in.
    Love
    Lauren

  25. [...] pretty speechless after the response to yesterday’s post. It’s a tough spot to be in because part of me hates to give less to something I care so deeply [...]

  26. Ahh, I’m a little late to this post– but I can definitely relate, and I say– DO what you have to do!!! Blogging is simply not as important as family and health– it’s just not. And if you feel like your time/sanity/health is being compromised by the only negotiable item on your list, you owe it to yourself (and your loved ones) to give yourself some slack in that area!!!!

  27. Sara says:

    Good luck, Tina. I don’t blog (and I only did it once a day and I didn’t have many readers–10!) but I stopped a few weeks ago. I decided to only blog when I feel like it. Lately, I haven’t really felt like it. I enjoy reading others’ blogs more than writing on my own. When I get home from work, I’m tired and I stare at a computer (two) screen all day long. I need to amp up my exercise, I have laundry and chores to do … it can’t all be done and then blog and find time to relax too! I find relaxing is more important right now. I am not sure how you make time to do all that you do, but I am glad that you blog! Do what feels right :-) It will all fall into place!

  28. Kiah says:

    Tina–reading posts like this is so valuable to me, for the very advice you put at the end of this post. We have all struggled with the juggling act in one way or another, and having some transparency with how other’s are coping is so so helpful. Keep fighting the good fight, lady!

  29. I heard parts of myself in your words today! Every so often I feel totally overwhelmed and just feel like giving up. About a week ago I had a total meltdown over my own blog (really, my life in general) and told my fiance that I felt like giving up. I ended up taking a few days off and reminding myself that because this is only a hobby and not a source of income for me, it’s okay if I need to take a break every once in a while. I’m not going to get fired from the blog, but if I don’t listen to my heart and just relax every now and then, I just might lose my mind. So thank you for sharing…I relate to much of what you say so often. And I’m glad you’re not giving up your blog either :)

  30. Amy Lauren says:

    Honestly, I don’t know you how you do it. I don’t have kids, I do work full time, but I blog like once or twice a week. You also work out a whole lot more than me and go to church/involved with that.

    I really don’t have that much blog-worthy stuff going on in my life to talk about anyway.

    Maybe you should cut back a little? I know there are so many posts of yours I don’t even get to read, if I miss 2-3 days of blog reading, I do miss out on a lot of posts. And a break is totally okay too! You have tons on here that I haven’t read and I’m sure others too, could read those.

  31. GAH, Tina.

    you have no idea how often I’ve been thinking this same exact thing. I don’t do anything halfway (what’s the point?), so everything I do tends to consume me. therefore, I find myself scrambling to stay on top of everything all. the. time.

    this, mixed with the difficult judgements to my IRL friends, has made me question my continuing to blog. I go back and forth often, honestly… and there’s no telling how long I’ll last.

    what I DO know is that your blog is fantastic, uplifting, and adorable with your little kiddos. I can’t imagine being a mom on top of everything I do now, so I have the utmost respect for you with your blog and YOUR crazy life.

    I still say that, ultimately, you need to do what makes YOU happiest. I don’t think I can offer any better advice. :) although, if you disappeared from blog world, I’d probably cry.

    just sayin’.

    • I second everything Alyssa just said. I was just starting to write out my own separate comment, but it echoes her thoughts almost exactly. Um, especially the part about having kids! I can’t even imagine.
      And I do the same thing as you. Manage everything for a while and everything is all good, and then one day BAM! It all catches up to me and I just feel…off. Truly, I think everyone experiences this…you are not alone!
      It is amazing how stressful something that starts as a hobby can become. I don’t like it when passions suddenly become an obligation, kinda takes the joy out of it.

      Tina, you are so inspiring to me (and clearly to so many other people), but like everyone else has said, you gotta do what’s right for you. I really hope to still see your bright shining face posting up in herrrre (and that goes for you too Alyssa!) I love you both.

  32. Marla-Deen says:

    Tina,
    I’m late to comment as I tend to focus on family events and schedules during the weekends and play catchup on Mondays. You have heard it all but know that as a Mom, fitness buff, Christian, and overall dedicated person our lives are full of so much stuff that we all get overwhelmed. I have finally learned that there are Seasons in our lives and we CAN do everything we have on our “list” but just not all at once. It’s fine to take a day or two, or even a week, off and re-group. I also found that after children my emotions changed and rollercoasted quite often. I often go to Philippians 4:6 and of course Phiippians 4:13 when I feel overwhelmed. As I have gotten older I see that when I am stressed, it stresses my family. I have learned to say “no” to things that steal my joy and do not add to my/our values. The beauty is that you have seemed to have discovered that already!

  33. I hope you figure things out Tina! I would miss your blog too much. You have a lot on your plate with everything you’re doing, but maybe you just have to do less of unnecessary things.

    Maybe not posting every day or multiple times a day? I know I have a hard time posting once a day and I don’t even have kids!

    Feel better soon!

  34. [...] Yay!) posted on today being ‘National Evaluate your Life’ day (in part inspired by Tina’s post at Faith Fitness & Fun, which I wanted to stand up and give a standing ovation for, [...]

  35. Jen says:

    Hugs Tina! I’m so sorry to hear you’re struggling right now. My husband and I had a serious heart-to-heart about something similar the other day. I finally got a job offer, but I did not feel comfortable taking it with the baby on the way. I had no idea how I’d be a good new employee AND a good new mom from the get go. It’s hard saying no to- or cutting back on- things we want to do because we know it’s not best at the moment.

    Hang in there, girl! You’re amazing and I know you will find a balance that works for you!

  36. Amanda says:

    I know that so many of us can relate to this post and how you’re feeling. Whatever you decide to do about your blogging schedule and how it fits into your life, your call to action at the end is SO important for all of us – we need to orient our lives around what we value the most and if that’s not currently the case (as it wasn’t for me a couple months ago!) maybe it’s time to re-evaluate.

  37. janetha says:

    Great posts and deep thoughts. I think a lot of us bite off more than we should when committing to blogging–but like you said, it’s because we are passionate. Unfortunately, there are only so many hours in a day and we can’t always devote enough time to ALL our passions. Loved hearing your thoughts, Tina. xo

  38. Tina, you are honestly such an incredible soul and I really thank you for writing such honest blog posts. Your words are so real and so inspirational to my own life. :) <3

  39. Oh, Tina I’m sorry you are feeling stressed and I hope that things settle down. I think realizing this is the first step though, and I’m sure just getting it out in writing is taking some weight off of your shoulders.

    From time to time I get annoyed at the blog wondering WHY I put effort into something if it stresses me out. It’s those times I take step back and take a break. I know you have a large following and my blog is quite small, but sometimes a break is needed…or at least taking time out from a particular schedule. You don’t owe anyone anything – you owe things to YOU and your family first and foremost.

    I think that when you do realize these things and do speak about them it really helps others…so thank you for always taking the time to blog about them. But I’m glad you are taking time out for you and the fam! :)

  40. Maria says:

    I think you’ve just described me in how I’m feeling at this moment. It’s an odd feeling that something big – not sure if its good or bad – is going to happen and I’ve been really anxious about it. While I figure things out, I’ve completely stopped blogging and its feels so freeing. I have time to find new passions and focus on the things that perhaps mean a bit more to me than my blog.

    I’m sure you’ll figure it out one way or another, but I’ll be thinking about you!

  41. just to let you know that the take away line from your post made a difference in my evening last night. I came home and was kind of just numbing out. Thank you for the jolt reminder that I needed to pay attention to how I was spending my time (I needed to do some cleaning and not read any blogs last night :) ). Taking care of what I needed to do for me, most definitely made me feel better and happier. THANK YOU!!

  42. I know that you’re not really looking for feedback, so I won’t go into it. but know that if you post less/etc I’ll still be here, reading :)

    I am like this too. most of the time I absolutely love everything about my blog/social media, but about once a month or so I just get so darn sick of it and feel like it is added responsibility/todo/stress. That’s when i usually take a couple of days off and start afresh.

  43. [...] think I know an underlying cause for my emotional madness earlier this week. HORMONES! I had forgotten about those suckers and just how much they can affect [...]

  44. [...] AND I have acupuncture after work. I inadvertently double booked. That said not a bad thing I read this post by Tina and the last sentences JUMPED off the screen at me. I needed to do other things, like my [...]

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