Reclaiming My Time: 3 lessons every woman should learn from Auntie Maxine

"The woman you're becoming will cost you people, relationships, spaces and material things. Choose her over everything."

In 2017, Auntie Maxine (a.k.a. U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters) had everyone going crazy when she coined the phrase, "reclaiming my time.” If you haven't seen a clip from the hearing already, I'll do my best to set the stage for you. Auntie Maxine is interjecting Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin after asking why he hadn’t responded to a letter she’d sent him in May inquiring about Trump’s financial ties in Russia. As he responded to her request, it is clear that he’s giving her the runaround and wasting her time. As Mnuchin continued, Auntie Maxine interjected, repeating the phrase “Reclaiming my time. Reclaiming my time. Reclaiming my time.” She continued until finally, the chairman silenced Mnuchin. When she says, "reclaiming my time," she is taking the floor back so that she can speak and so that he would no longer waste her time with empty words and fluff. We all cheered as Maxine Waters stood up for herself, her precious “time” and her respect.

No time to waste

Like Auntie Maxine, I too reclaimed my time in 2017. I stopped saying yes when I wanted to say no, I stopped going places and spaces that I know did not promote positivity. And most of all, I ended relationships that were either unhealthy or not tied to my destiny. I also stopped caring so much about what others thought about me. All of my life, I have somewhat viewed myself through the lens of others and not my own. What will they think if I do this? What will they think if I say this? What will they think if I wear this? All sorts of foolishness that was unnecessary and irrelevant. In 2017, I decided to live my life unapologetically on my terms. Was it uncomfortable? Yes! Was I afraid? Sure! Was it worth it? I would do it one million times over. Gaining control of your life, your space and your time is so important. As I grow older, I realize that time is such a precious gem and it is so short. Therefore, I have never been one to want to waste time, but little did I know I was wasting my own time by allowing outside forces stunt my growth.


Let your cup runneth over

The discomfort I felt was temporary, but the strength I gained was everlasting. I practice it daily too. I protect my energy and I do not allow anything to disrupt my vibe, positivity or mental sanity. I have no problem saying no to things that I am not able to commit to and I say yes to things that I believe in. I choose myself every single time. You may be thinking, well that is really selfish! It really isn't! Let me tell you something if you are not whole and complete, how can you completely commit yourself to serving others? I believe that our purpose here on this Earth is to serve. And while I am very giving of my time, attention, and talents God blessed me with, I won't be able to adequately serve others in a broken, tired, debilitated state. It is all about keeping your cup full so that you can pour into others. But, if you allow outer sources to suck you dry, then you have nothing to give and nothing for yourself.

Choose you

If you haven't already, I challenge you to reclaim your time in 2018. Let your "no" be no and your "yes" be yes. Do not allow the decisions and choices of others to infiltrate your happiness. Consider yourself first and stand for what you believe in. Live your life unapologetically. And always protect your energy and your spirit. What are some ways in which you want to reclaim your time this year? Do you feel fully equipped to do so already? What do you feel was holding you back in the first place? Fear? Opinions of others, etc,? Let's chat, I want to hear from you!

Ashley CockrellComment