EPISODE 156: How I Am Taking a Step Back, While Still Working Towards My Goals



Over the last several months, life has been running wild and after the grind of it all, I am bridging on the cusp of burnout. BUT, because I’ve done the internal work to recognize that I am burning out, I am doing intentional work to make sure I don’t go further down this rabbit hole. 


In today’s episode, I am sharing with you how I am being intentional about the work I’m doing so I don’t have to continue to be on the hamster wheel of content creation and creative production. We are not machines and cannot go, go, go, all the time. I hope that by sharing how I am taking a step back helps you do the same thing if you’re feeling like you need to!



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Maddy 0:01 Hey bestie and welcome to the living in sunshine podcast. I’m your host, Maddy fry. And around here we are all about encouraging, inspiring, and giving you the tough love that you need to hear to get out there and live as your best self. Each and every Wednesday, you can expect to learn tangible tips to help you find your bigger purpose, be given simple action steps that you can take in order to make progress toward your biggest dreams, and hear how you can purposely pursue joy on the daily. So sit down, grab your favorite drink. And let’s have a girl chat. This is the living in sunshine podcast.

Maddy 0:39 Good morning. Good morning, my friends. And welcome back to the living in sunshine podcast. I am so excited that you are here tuning in for another brand new episode. The day that I’m recording this is the newest era and installment of our Lord and Savior mother Taylor Swift’s discography that Georgia boats already came out today and I’m not gonna lie, I would much rather be doing nothing other than listening to that. But your girl has goals girl has things to do. And I have a podcast that I need to record for you to listen to. And I’m so excited for today’s episode. Because I a couple of weeks ago, oh my gosh, my chair, I’m sitting in a chair. My chair just like flew, almost died on the podcast that would have been tragic. My life you guys, I can’t make this up. I am here today, because a couple of weeks ago, I shared that I am feeling like a burnt little roasted toasted piece of toast. And that I mean, I am just super burnt out. There are so many moving pieces and parts in my life right now, both personally and creatively and professionally. And they’re all good, right? They’re all great, all good things are happening. But it has just led to a very burnt out me. And I shared a couple weeks ago that some of the ways that I’m taking care of myself in this season of a feeling burnt out. So I don’t completely like self destruct right like we have sometimes seen. And the online entrepreneur space is taking some things off my plate. And I wanted to share with you kind of a few things that I’m intentionally doing to really support myself in continuing towards my goals, while also making space for me to be a human instead of just being a machine of creation and production and output, right? Because we aren’t machines, we can’t just go go go go go and not take a step back or turn ourselves off or recharge or take care of ourselves. And honestly, even machines can’t do that your car, you need to put gas in it, you need to change its oil. If you’re thinking like a factory machine, there is someone there who needs to do maintenance on the machine. So it continues to work. And so this is the maintenance that I’m doing for myself so I can continue to do the work and continue to show up for myself and my goals and my larger vision for life. Right.

Maddy 3:02 So the first thing that I’m doing is something that I touched on a couple weeks ago on a podcast episode is that I am actually backtracking and cutting some things back. One of them being the podcast, right? So instead of there being a podcast every week, for the next couple of months, there’s going to be a podcast every other week. And just really like looking at my workload with a keen eye and doing an audit in terms of where can I be smart, and work smarter, not harder when it comes to being creative and, and being in production mode and being an output mode. Right. So that looks like taking a week off with recording the podcast. So that way over the next three months, I only need to record three podcasts and instead of recording 12 podcasts, right? Going from one to the other is a huge shift and will free up so much time for me to rest and recoup and creatively focus more intentionally and more productively than I have in the past. Because over the last couple of months, I’ve been like alright, boom, boom, boom, get this done, do this, this, this and this and then move on instead of really being intentional about it and really sinking and sitting in the joy that I get from the creative projects that I have such as the podcast right? And if you can hear Ellie shaking herself in the background, we are taking this podcast in a in a direction of rawness and realize miss and not cutting out and not editing and taking those things out. Because I’m seeing the podcast as a little time capsule. I think I’ve said that before in the show. But I want to be able to listen back to these these episodes in four or 5, 6, 7, 10 years and be like, Oh my gosh, like there’s my dog in the background or there’s me falling over my chair, whatever. I digress. So that’s one thing that I’m doing is I’m cutting back on the spaces and on the projects that don’t absolutely need to be at the capacity that they have been in order for me to still feel Good about the impact that I’m making, right? So really looking at the content I’m producing the output I’m creating, and asking myself, where can you scale back? Where can you pull back and still have a really intentional impact?

Maddy 5:15 Okay, so for me, that’s the podcast, that is also my Instagram account. I’m working with my OBM, to be really intentional about recreating content that has done really well in the past. If you’re a business owner, I really encourage you to do this. This is something I also do with my own social media clients, and repurposing the things that did really, really well. But repurposing them in a fresh light in a new way, in order to sort of save that creative energy and, and use it in other new spaces that need a higher creative output than social media does. Okay? So there’s things number one, being really mindful, taking a keen look at at my output and my creative levels. And just seeing where I can pull back just a little, that will still make an impact. And that will still help me to get to the goals that I have for myself and the larger vision that I have for myself, without continuing to overproduce and constantly be outputting in such a way that makes me feel really burnt out.

Maddy 6:11 Okay, the second thing that I am doing to really help myself to continue on the path of pursuing my goals, is actually cutting back the number of goals that I focus on each month. So before I used to really focus on goals at a larger big picture level, and break them down and reverse engineer them, like I’ve talked about in the podcast before. But now instead of focusing on all of my goals all at once, each month, and I started doing this in April, and it was really, really helpful and really, really impactful was I just focused on three. And one of them was a personal life goal. One of them was a creative projects goal. And the other one was a professional goal. Maddy 6:56 And not only was I focusing on just three goals a month, but when I sat down to look at my goals that month, which something that I also implemented in April was a CEO day. And this is something that I’m working on implementing over the next couple of months, and hopefully just sort of seeing how it makes me feel as they go into each month. And that just looks like dedicating the first Friday of every single month to CEO tasks that need to happen. Goal setting, checking in reflecting, doing business, auditing things back of house, things that get pushed off just really reserving that first Friday of the month to do those things. And as I was doing this in April, I not only just picked three goals to focus on for the month of April. But I wrote them out in Asana, which is my housing situation system for my goals and dreams and all the things I want to do. But I didn’t just write them out. I also wrote why I want to work on them that month. And so one of my goals was posting two to three times to Instagram each week. And then I wrote down why I wanted to do that. And my why for that is because I truly believe in the vision and the mission in the in the, you know, goal of living in sunshine. But in order to get that out to people, I have to show up on social media, right, no one can serve my message more than me. And no one can deliver my message like I can and hope to have the same impact that I want to have. And so in order to hit the goals that I have for living in sunshine, I have to continue to show up on Instagram and become more consistent at that, again, even in a season of burnout. So not only am I just writing or revisiting those goals, I’m reminding myself of the why behind them and why I set that goal in the first place.

Maddy 8:44 And the the other thing that I’m kind of doing to make sure that I keep up with this is I have it as a task in Asana, you could do this in Google, you could do this in you know, click up or Monday, really. And what I do is I have that badge sitting on Saturday, which is technically an off day, I’m not in the office on Saturday. But what I do is is on Monday I like to click into that badge and read my goals and really kind of plan out like okay, I’m going to post here on I’m gonna post here, one of my goals for April is to get out of the house and work outside of the house once a week because that’s really good for my mental health. So I plan like okay, I’m gonna go on Thursday to a coffee shop or Friday afternoon, I’m gonna go to the library and work and really compounding that, that tighter funnel of goals per month, and then making them even more specific and tying them to a why. Why do I want to get out of the house to work? Why do I want to complete this project by the end of the month? Why do I need to show up consistently online? Because as I’ve said before, and I truly do believe this when you match your goals with a deeply emotionally rooted why you are going to be more entering physically motivated and inspired to work towards that goal. And I’ve done this now for a few weeks, and I’m not gonna lie, it feels really good to check in on a Monday and be like, Yep, I checked off that goal. Yep, I did that. And you know, at the end of each month, I’m excited to check into those goals.

Maddy 10:17 And I’m excited to reflect on how did I do? How did it feel to just focus on two or three points per month instead of, you know, five to 10 each month, which is what I was doing, and constantly feeling like I was spinning my wheels and not making any progress, because I was dividing my attention across all of these multiple different things, instead of just focusing on a few, right, and that Division of Energy is really draining and something that you may be feeling right now. And if you are, I encourage you to ask yourself, Where can I cut back? Where can I focus in on just a few? Where can I go deeper, instead of going wider when it comes to my goals, or my to do list or my focus or my dreams, right? So that’s the second thing that I’ve done. And it’s been super duper impactful. I’m really excited to see how that starts to compound over the next couple of months moving into summer. And all of those things.

Maddy 11:12 And then finally, thing number three. And this last thing is something that I encourage you to do during this time of year, we’re about halfway through 2024, which is ba-na-nas, I can’t believe how fast this year is going. But something that I really encourage you to do is to check in with your vision board. And to check in with your dream life. I did a podcast that’s going live in a couple of weeks with Lex Vanek, she is amazing. But something that she mentioned in that interview, was creating a dream board and like my who I’m becoming board, I think is what she called it. And she gave the example. And I don’t want to give too much away because I want you to listen to the episode. But she essentially shared this tip of creating a Pinterest board or a vision board on Canva or cutting out pictures from a magazine. However, whatever kind of way you want to do it. And really just revisit your vision board and check in with are the things on my board right now what I actually want in this current season? And if the answer is no, it’s okay to change it. We all know, because I’ve talked about it a million times, both on Instagram and the podcast inside the owner vision course, that at one point in my life, my vision board included the life I’m currently living, right. It included a little white house with a yellow friend door in Charleston, South Carolina, and a big enough backyard for all of our dogs and all of our animals. And we’re living that right now. And I believe that I manifested that. And I started that because I put that on my vision board. But now my vision has gotten bigger. And now my dream life has gotten a little bit different. And I remember I was working on my dream board. I have a like a dream life board on Pinterest that I’ve started. And I was searching on Pinterest and I came across this photo that I like my breath. I like I gasped when I saw it. And I immediately like got misty eyed and got emotional when I saw it because it was this beautiful photo of this home office, it almost looked like a like a Writing Studio. And I it’s this beautiful, it almost looks like it’s on the lake. But it’s an all glass, like the view that you’re taking of it is all glass windows and a door that leads out onto a dock. And it’s right on the water. And it’s white, and it’s clean, and it’s serene. And I literally downloaded the image and I sent it to the cute one boy and I was like this is what I want for us. This is where I want to go. This is what I want for us in the next five years is this kind of space for me to work, and for me to create and to heal, and to explore and to play and to get creative. And I would love to have this for us. And that’s not to say that I’m not grateful for what we have right now. Because what we have now is literally what Maddy five years ago wanted with her whole soul and her whole being. But I’ve done that, right. And there are things on your vision board that you have done, that you have completed. And it’s time for you to shoot for the next thing to celebrate where you are. But to revisit your vision board and update it and give it an upgrade. And maybe not give it an upgrade or an update. But to just pivot where you need to write. Maybe the vision board that you have is the vision board that you set for yourself in a season where you were making X number of dollars and now you’re making y number of dollars. And so what’s on your vision board doesn’t align with where you are right now and your income. Or maybe when you made your vision board. It was back when you were exploring some type of business opportunity or, or hobby or creative outlet and you try that out and you’re like wow, I hated that. And so it’s time for an update. It’s time for a pivot so I’m free to update that vision board that dream board and make it really What you want right now. And if that is something that you have to do, I want to give you the permission slip. But that’s okay. We as humans are ever evolving creatures are ever evolving beings. And we don’t need to wait for a system update delivered to us every six to eight months. For us to change our minds, we can change our minds, as many times and as frequently as we want to, right? We are not machines, we are humans, we are people with deep, vast, wide, crazy, wild, magical, beautiful emotions, and wants and needs and desires. And it’s okay for you to recognize all of those things. And that’s something that I am currently doing. And it feels so refreshing to kind of take off the shackles and say, This is what I wanted. At one point in my life, this is no longer what I wanted. And that’s okay. That’s me just saying in this season, this is where my focus is going to go and where my focus is going to be. And I’m okay with that. And that’s the same kind of reflection and envision process that I want for you too. So all of the things that I am doing now are things that are, of course, a process. And I’m not sure if they are working because I just started doing them. But this is one of those things that I want to do with you. And I want you to feel like you’re doing them with me, instead of me saying I did this, this is how it is this is the income this is what you need to do.

Maddy 16:27 This is a journey, right? And I want you to come with me on this journey, especially if you are feeling like a burnt little piece of toast and just see what happens you know what I mean? So, here’s to trying new things. Here’s to pulling back in order to keep moving forward instead of having to forcibly just put the brakes on and stop. And I hope that this episode was helpful. If it was please give it a rating a review on Apple podcasts those helps so so much. And be sure to take a screenshot and share it to Instagram or your favorite social media platform and tag me my instagram handle is at living the letter N sunshine. And I will see you guys again in another couple of weeks. And until then, I am sending you all the sunshine, good vibes. And I hope you make it a great day girlfriend.

Maddy 17:13 Thank you so much for listening to today’s new episode. If you loved it, please send it to a friend share it on Instagram and tag me so I can see and consider leaving the show a rating or a review. Ratings and reviews are kind of like sharing or liking a post on Instagram and they really help the show grow and reach new women just like you. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast so you never miss a new episode. And until next week, I am sending you all the sunshine, good vibes and I hope you make it a great day.