They are in town promoting her new book, Packing Light: Thoughts on Living Life with Less Baggage, and wanted to say thanks by meeting at Starbucks for a cup of coffee — and naturally I was down with that!
Several years ago, Allison began to realize several things were holding her back from what she believed was really important in life.
So she decided to quit her full-time job, sold nearly everything she owned and spent the next six months driving across the country. She learned some powerful lessons about traveling — many of which pertain to all of life:
1. You can’t take everything with you.
2. What you choose to bring matters.
3. You will have to leave some things behind.
Realizations of My Own
They must have known that I was traveling today, as they gave me a copy of the book with a heartfelt message inside. I had planned on waiting until I was on the plane to start reading the book, but I simply couldn’t wait.
I’m only a couple of chapters into it, and must admit that a lot of the same questions she asked herself are ones I’ve asked myself many times.
I’m looking forward to continuing the book when I have some free time this weekend, though right now I can’t help but express how much I want to internalize what I’ve read so far and sit within that.
Missing the Calls
I’m a firm believer that far too often we miss calls in our life because we’re too busy, or because we simply have too many things on our plate.
While society tells us to keep going, to stay active and always be moving the needle, our souls tragically suffer from that kind of lifestyle.
It happens to me more than I’d like to admit, but once in a while I catch the signs and realize just how important these feelings are.
Scroll back up and take another look at the 3 main lessons that Allison learned on her journey, and tell me if any of those resonate with you.
I’m not talking about real baggage here, like clothing and other household items. I’m talking about emotional capacity, and whether or not we have the courage to admit that our tanks are empty.
Too Much vs. Too Little
One of the biggest issues that our society has is that we are constantly bombarded with distractions — most of them are self-induced, but nonetheless they still exist and disrupt our lives.
We watch too much television. We spend too much time playing video games. We’re working more hours than we should be.
Or even worse, many of you are trapped in the social media quagmire which, as I’ve experienced at times, can absolutely kill your soul.
When things get to this level, you have to make changes. At some point you need to call a timeout and recalibrate your life before it’s too late.
Who You Follow and Why
After getting through the first couple chapters of Allison’s book, I had to stop in my tracks and do some thinking.
Why do I feel so busy in life? Why do I feel like I can’t get it all done? Why do I feel like I’m living a life of quantity and not a life of quality?
One of the things I’m realizing is that I follow too many people on social media. It’s been a long time since I’ve actually scrolled through that list and today I’m doing that and have started to unfollow a number of folks.
You might be wondering why I’m doing this, and the answer is really simple.
I don’t have the capacity in my life to carry excess baggage and only want to take with me what is necessary. I don’t want to follow people just because.
I want to spend my time on social media as efficiently as I can, to learn from others and read things spoken by people I know and care about.
I know that this might sound a bit harsh, but if I don’t continually refine the way I do life, I’ll become overwhelmed and will ultimately be buried by it.
Most of the posts that I have written lately come with a challenge, and today is no different. Take a deep look inward and ask yourself if there is any excess baggage that you are carrying.
Are you following numbers? Or are you following people?
Is there room in your life for more? Or are the margins in your life so small that there’s nothing left for adding things that bring value?
Open your suitcase and see what’s weighing you down. Or holding you back.
Remove the things you can do without, and add the things you can’t.
Pack lightly, my friends …