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#52 The Firehose - More is Not Better

Ever caught yourself trying to do it all, be it all, see it all, have it all - like drinking from a firehose? This episode is all about challenging the notion of "more is better" and understanding how this mentality often leads to overwhelm, dissatisfaction, and a constant feeling of being behind.

Here's the twist - the solution is constraint. It seems counterintuitive, but stick with me as I unpack how it aligns our actions with our true values and desires. We'll venture through the emotions of fear of missing out, disappointment, and uncertainty, as we consciously choose to limit ourselves.

Since you’re ready to become your favorite version of you, book a consult to learn more about working with me as your coach.

"You get to choose between the feeling of overwhelm that comes from thinking that you have to try to drink from the fire hose and have it all, or you get the feelings that come along with constraining yourself down to doing only what you truly want to do."

What you'll learn in this episode:

  • The "drinking from a firehose" phenomenon - it simply does not work

  • Becoming your own best friend, and breaking free from overwhelm

  • The myth of "more is better" mentality. Spoiler alert: It's not always true

  • The art of questioning your feelings, not to invalidate them, but to understand them better

"Anything that comes along that was meant for you will always be there, trust that and then watch what happens."

Be sure to sign up for a consult to see if coaching with me is the right fit for you. Join me on the powerful journey to become your favorite you.

Listen to the full episode:

Read the full episode transcript

 Hey, this is Melissa Parsons, and you are listening to the Your Favorite You Podcast. I'm a certified life coach with an advanced certification in deep dive coaching. The purpose of this podcast is to help brilliant women, like you, with beautiful brains create the life you've been dreaming of with intention.

My goal is to help you find your favorite version of you by teaching you how to treat yourself as your own best friend. If this sounds incredible to you and you want practical tips on changing-up how you treat yourself, then you're in the right place. Just so you know, I'm a huge fan of using all of the words available to me in the English language, so please proceed with caution if young ears are around.

Well, hello there. Welcome back to this week's episode of Your Favorite You. I'm so glad that you are here today. I want to talk about a phenomenon that I am going to refer to as the fire hose. I constantly have to remind myself that no one wants to drink from a fire hose. That attempting to drink from a fire hose is not a pleasant experience and that it is really not necessary.

In fact, you might go so far as to say it is not possible. I have to give credit where credit is due, and my hubby, John, was the first person to bring my awareness to this. And if I'm being honest, he has to continuously remind me of this. The first time he said this to me in a coaching context was when I was writing the content for my first webinar back a couple of years ago.

Now, I, of course, was wanting to share with the audience, quote, unquote, everything that I knew about becoming your own best friend. So how do you condense three years’ worth of learning about the human psyche, my own journey, all the reasons why we aren't programmed to be our own best friend, the patriarchy, the clients that I have helped so far.

You get the idea. How do I condense that down into a 30-minute webinar? Sounds easy, right? John sweetly pointed out that I did not, in fact, and could not possibly share every little thing that I knew in these 30 minutes. In this instance, I think I was operating under the false assumption that more is better.

I have found this statement to be false so many times now that I am on the lookout for it constantly. And now that I know that this thought of more is better is simply not true, I get to question it whenever it comes up for me or for any of my clients. There are so many other instances where drinking from the fire hose and thinking that more is better does not serve you.

The problem is that we are conditioned and socialized to believe that more is in fact better. This is a common narrative that I can see get played out over and over for my clients. And I want to remind you that I include myself as one of my clients, my number one client. Always. We believe that if we have more money, we will be happy.

We are conditioned to believe that if we have more friends, we will be happy. We are conditioned to believe that life would be better if we had more hours in the day. You get the idea. Here are some ways that I've seen this played out over and over again in the past several years. When you first get into the self-development world, there are hundreds, actually, more likely, probably thousands of books that you can read on the subject, all from different angles and different points of view.

You couldn't possibly read them all in your lifetime, even if that was all you ever did. When you get into the coaching world, there are thousands of different coaches you could choose to work with. I have so many amazing friends who are coaches, and whenever they describe what they do, who they help, I think, I could use that.

That sounds amazing. Your course could really help me. I want to work with you. Even when they say they are coaching men in their thirties in New Zealand to find love. I'm like, hmm, how could that apply to me? There's simply not enough time in my lifetime to work with every coach that I want to work with.

You can use this concept of more is not better in other cases too. John and I used it just recently when we were in Spain. We were there for about eight days. We went to two cities, Barcelona and Madrid. We had the option to take day trips to Toledo and Segovia when we were in Madrid. We actually chose to stay in Madrid, and we thoroughly enjoyed it.

We had the option to go to so many museums and so many ancient churches. We went to one, and we appreciated the beauty of just the one. We could have exhausted ourselves, but we specifically chose not to do so. Interestingly, one of the two tours I scheduled for us in Barcelona took place on the hottest day we were there.

For It was 95 degrees for a high that's 35 Celsius for all of my metric listeners, we toured for five and a half hours. It was supposed to be a six-hour tour, but our guide Ramon saw that we were melting. He was also melting. And we called it a day. Even though I was drinking water throughout the whole entire tour.

I woke up in the middle of the night. After the tour with a dehydration headache and felt terrible. This is definitely an instance where more is not better. Well, I guess more water, more air conditioning, more sitting than walking would have been better, but you get the idea. The same concept can be applied to parenting in so many ways.

So, from my days as a pediatrician, your newborn baby does not need a lot of stuff. More is not better. They need a safe food source. They need a safe space to sleep. They need clothing that is weather appropriate. They need a car seat. That's about it. Everything else you can buy at Bye Bye Baby and online, all the shops for babies.

It's extra. They don't need it. Your child does not need to be involved in every activity known to civilization. If they want to be in some activities that they love, yes, but they do not need to be going to an activity every night of the week. And they certainly do not need to be going to multiple activities a night.

They, like you and me, need time to simply be, to relax, to use their incredible imaginations. Personally, we saw this play out in our family when the boys were younger. We definitely committed, or rather over committed to activities with Jack. It led to what John calls Total FOMO Syndrome. The kid becomes exhausted and burnt out.

We remember juggling soccer and baseball practices and games the same day. The guilt trips we would get from the coaches at times from missing one thing in favor of the other. And sadly, we dragged Owen to nearly all of the tournaments because if one of us One of us, John and I missed one, we felt like we were subpar parents.

It was honestly Owen who put a stop to it when he refused to participate in activities. Despite our best efforts to talk him into getting involved, he saw his brother and he was like, no thanks. So, and as he will proclaim now, he turned out okay. In the workplace, Firehose Syndrome will have you never saying no, always saying yes.

You end up overextended and over committed to the point where no one project gets completed and you constantly feel behind. This backfires on people all the time because the intention is to be ambitious and engaged, but the perception often becomes you can't finish anything you started. When we attempt to drink from the fire hose.

It can easily overwhelm us and cause us to stop taking things in altogether. We stop participating even in the things we really do care about, the activities that truly do align with our values. So, what is the solution you might be asking? The answer, in my opinion, is constraint. Constraint is something we learn to practice a lot in coaching.

Constraint involves limiting the things we do based on what it is we actually want. And then, dealing with the emotions that come up as a result of how we are thinking when we are actually constraining ourselves. Now, you might be thinking, I don't want to limit myself, Melissa. This is likely due to conditioning and socialization as well, being told that we can have it all without realizing the overwhelm that actually comes from having to do it all.

So, you get to choose between the feeling of overwhelm that comes from thinking that you have to try to drink from the fire hose and have it all. Or you get the feelings that come along with constraining yourself down to doing only what you truly want to do, those feelings can be many. So, fear of missing out the disappointment that might come.

With letting someone else down, the uncertainty at first of whether or not you're doing the right thing. Most of my clients want to get to work at feeling anything other than overwhelmed. So, we take the time to do this work together. The first thing to do as will come probably is no surprise to most of you that have been listening is to ask yourself, what do I want?

Start asking yourself, does this get me closer to what I want? Or does it get me further away? Start noticing the times where less is actually more. When having fewer things on the to do list has you thinking thoughts that actually feel better in your body. Train your brain to notice every time you feel a little bit of fear of missing out on something.

And question it. I'm not saying to resist feeling the feeling. I'm saying to lovingly question it. Let it be there and ask yourself, why am I really feeling this way? Train your brain to notice every time you feel a little bit of disappointment when you might have let someone else down. Question that. And then know that anything that comes along that was meant for you will always be there.

Trust that. And then watch what happens. Watch what comes in to fill the space. My hope is that it surprises and delights you. Thank you so much for listening today. If you need help stopping drinking from the fire hose, I would love to be your coach. You can go to Melissa Parsons, coaching. com. Click on the work with me tab and book your consult on my calendar.

Please, please, please come back next week for our one-year anniversary podcast. I thought it would be fun to turn the tables on myself. And to have my coach Maggie interview me on the podcast. We recorded it a couple of days ago, and it is a not to be missed conversation. See you then.

Thank you for listening to the podcast and loving on me all the time. Now that my group launch is closed, I am opening up two spots to work with me one-on-one. If one-on-one coaching is more your jam, please reach out to me to book a consult by going to my website,, and clicking on the Work with Me tab.

I would love to discuss with you how I can help you on a one-on-one basis. Talk to you soon.

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