Seeing the Forest and the Trees

How we view the world determines our experience

Who says we need to choose? Somewhere along the way, there’s been a bit of a rumour that we need to make choices instead of being able to have it all. No offense to smallgoods, I reckon it’s baloney.

There is a way, if we apply a kind of organic principle to our days, that we can have cake and eat it too. I have commitments with work, family and study, and have had for several years, so I’m not just making this up.

The first thing I do is make sure I’m following my intuition – Steve Jobs had it right, your heart and your intuition somehow know what you want to become.

It’s Sunday morning, so I had a second whilst the troops are asleep (between formatting an assignment and making breakfast) to venture a little further afield and read a few blogs I don’t normally get the chance to read. I felt sad that there are so few people spruiking this idea.

Most blogs will give you instructions and step by step things to do. Unfortunately, this usually just adds to my list of things to do and makes it longer – an opinion I know that is shared by Jeannett of Life Rearranged when she started using Simple Mom Tsh’s book ’One Bite at a Time’. Simplicity needs to be well… how can I say it… simple, in order to work.

So here I am, at my computer, which sits neatly close to my kitchen and my washing machine at the sunny end of our house. I like to keep it all nearby so I can put on a load and cook a meal and write a blog in a circular kind of motion.

I’m not one for keeping it all separate and apart, I like to do a bit of this and a bit of that, somewhat like the way I plant vegetables. Let’s just say they’re not all in rows or sections, but rather all mish-mashed together so they can help each other thrive.

It’s like permaculture for mums – I model my life on how things naturally want to work. I try not to fight the natural way things happen, but go with it and work along with it as much as possible.

This helps me remember, I don’t have to choose. I can do bits and pieces of all of it and get where I’m going in time. This means I don’t shut off opportunities and am present and available to my family while I study. Of course, at exam time I go to the library, but most of the time I love to have this open-door way of working and being. It means I get to sit in the forest and look at the trees whenever I need to.

It reminds me that I don’t have to choose one thing over another and create hierarchies of need all the time. I can choose to see the forest AND the trees after all.


Alena Turley is an Australian mentor for mothers. Founder of the pioneering blog, the Soul Mama Hub, her wellbeing membership offers a powerful pathway for mothers ready to go from over-extended, stuck in the daily grind, to empowered, inspired and energised so they can become the CHANGEMAKERS they dream of being.

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