You’re busy. I get it. Your calendar is full. I get it. You don't have time to add something else. I get it. I know it’s hard work to stay as busy as you do. I am not making light of your busy schedule. But I also know that we often times give busyness permission to drive our lives and we do nothing to stop it. We are so used to a crazy pace that we grow numb to how this way of life is wearing us down.
But you do not have to live this way. A more balanced way of life is possible, but it is going to take some self-reflection and hard work. It is going to take some time and space where you can review your thoughts, feelings, and actions so that you can move forward in a healthy, balanced way.
Here are 5 tips to help you move from a busy to a balanced life.
1. Reorganize your calendar based on balanced priorities.
Open your calendar. Look over the last month. What has fallen through the cracks? What meeting do you keep putting off? Who is the friend you have not seen in a while? Look ahead to the next month and write down now those people, places, and events most important to you. Schedule them in and make them a priority. Begin to create a calendar that gives priority to your health, relationships, personal growth, career, and spirituality. Your balanced life often starts with a balanced calendar.
2. Say "No" to one new opportunity.
"No" is a full sentence, but it is often a hard one to say. Maybe you don't want to hurt someone’s feelings. Maybe the pressure to say "Yes" is stronger than the act of saying "No." So next time someone asks you to add something to your plate try saying, "Let me think about it." Then give yourself some time to reflect to see if it is the right choice for you at this time. You do have to say "Yes" to anything you do not want to do. By saying “No” you will find greater balance in your day-to-day life.
3. Learn your self-care red flags.
When we get busy we often have coping mechanisms to endure the crazy pace. There are often signs we are getting overwhelmed if we will stop to notice them. So take some time to ask: what are the behaviors or patterns that show up when you are burned out or tired? Maybe for you it is overeating or drinking more than usual. Maybe it is binge-watching Netflix for the entire weekend. Maybe it is staying up too late or avoiding work tasks. Pay attention to your red flags so that you can know when to respond to yourself with care. When you do, then you will begin to move towards balance.
4. Begin a gratitude journal in the morning or evening.
You are a busy woman. Creating time and space for self-reflection is hard to fit in. But adding a morning or nightly practice of writing in a journal can help your busy spirit. It will not take long. Just take a few moments as your day begins or ends to write where you found joy in that day or the previous one. This exercise has a way of calming down our busyness by helping us to see the blessings in our life.
5. Ask for help.
Name the people in your life that you can ask for help. Can you ask for help with one of the things that is falling through the cracks of your calendar? Can a loved one meet you for coffee or help you finish a large project at your house? Asking for help is not a sign of weakness; it is a sign of strength because it shows you know your limits. Reflect on who you want or need to help you in this busy season of life. Leaning on them for a season may be the key to helping you have a more balanced life.
If you would like to talk more about moving from busy to balanced living, then feel free to contact me for a 15-minute phone consultation to see if I might be a good fit for you.