• tia@tia-ma.com
  • Gainesville, Florida
I Let Myself Have the Reward First

I Let Myself Have the Reward First

My to-do list was missing happiness

Ichetucknee Head Springs photo by Tia Ma

I jumped on the Zoom call, to meet with my small group. My business coaching program, MasterHeart with George Kao, has us check in regularly to reaccess and net-care. (George taught us the concept of caring for our peers and clients, rather than ‘network’ them.) It was time for a check-in.

The four of us took turns sharing our struggles and successes. I shared my depletion at attempting to write, video, post, share, respond, reflect, collaborate, all while launching classes, finishing my book, and attempting to keep up with my self-care; napping, qigong, walking, cooking, cleaning, meditation, friends, etc. My teammates all nodded their heads emphatically.

Sophie, a solopreneur who lives in Cambridge U.K. shared,

“I used to say, if I finish all my work, THEN I would reward myself by walking down to the river for a swim. Swimming makes me so happy. But I realized, I was never getting all my work done, so I wasn’t swimming. Then I shifted my schedule, and now walking to the river for a swim is the FIRST thing I do in the morning.”

It surprised me to feel tears roll down my face. I had tried to get to the river three times already in the last six days, and I kept running out of time. I didn’t realize how sad this was making me.

The next morning, sipping my coffee as I looked at my schedule, I saw my usual menu: write, edit a video, publish, post, book appointments, and either work on my website, or my youtube, either my Insta or my Facebook business page.

My day felt heavy in front of me, but then I remembered the river! I grabbed my snorkel, put on my suit, and got myself to the Ichetucknee Springs. Going to the river became top priority on my list.

Selfie at the Springs — Tia Ma

In western culture, we use our favorite thing