I’ve been following Michelle over at The Waiting Warriors for a year or so now through her Instagram page as well as her podcast but recently I’ve really started to pay close attention to her podcast and emails. In a recent email, I love the newsletters she sends out, she talked about non-negotiables and how that changed her day to day survival while her husband was gone.

To Quote:

1. Think of the days when you’ve gotten in bed and thought “You know, I’m tired, but that was a GOOD day.” Not the vacations, or the “I didn’t have to do anything hard” but the days when you felt fulfilled.

2. Write down what the common things were that you did. Not what happened or didn’t happen to you, but what YOU did.  (ie worked out by yourself vs having interruptions, read a book, walked on a beautiful path, ate healthy 80% of the day, journaled, read scripture, dance party with your kids) Whatever it is for you, write it down. 

3. Pick the 3 that are most important to you and your goals, and do those first EVERY SINGLE DAY. Don’t let a play date, errands, or the unit’s event takeover your day and leave you empty. Those are all good things, but you need to need to focus on what is BEST. Set those boundaries and stick to them. I promise, your kids and the world will adjust and be just fine with a taken care of you!

4. Let go of everything else. There will be days, I promise, when life will throw a whole lot of crazy at you. Still take care of your 3 things when possible and let EVERYTHING else go. Obviously feed everyone and keep living conditions healthy, but you know what? If the dishes don’t get done and your neighbor sees, it’s OK! If you don’t go to every single Spouse’s Club function, its OK! 

Whatever it looks like for you, I hope you take a minute for some self reflection, become more aware of what you need and unapologetically make them your Non Negotiables! 

I loved this idea, this plan. I love a plan and I need a plan to make my days work and reach fulfillment. In Michelle’s Instagram stories so shows the PowerPoint slide her husband made her (how Army is that!) where they mapped out the phases of non-negotiables and what happens after the three non-negotiables have been set.

  • Phase 1: three non-negotiables
  • Phase 2: add in one hobby but only after phase 1 is set and working
  • Phase 3: add in another hobby etc.

Here is what I’ve come up with for my plan:

Sometimes, ok a lot of times, the days seem overwhelming and the commitments seem to take over but having a plan like this helps. I know what must get done to make each consecutive day better and it also helps with the guilt of not being able to attend every event or add in all the extra activities. I’m excited to look back and see my personal growth that will come from this and the hobbies I add in. I’m considering a condensed version for the kids but when I opened the conversation this morning they seemed overwhelmed so I tabled that for now, haha.

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