“Balance is not something you find, it’s something you create.”
As many of us transition from adolescence to the reality of adult life that comes with a plethora of responsibilities, we try to maintain that “work-life” balance. The means to be able to do what we have to do to pay the bills and still enjoy our personal lives including spending time with family and keeping up with hobbies. It’s such a frequently discussed topic because it’s not the easiest thing to do, especially when your responsibilities become greater as life progresses. I decided to look into my own life and couple that with research of other working women’s advice on how they balance the scales of life. Check out what I discovered as you read on.
Start Your Day with ‘Me’ Time
I know of far too many people who start their day by hitting the floor running or on their phones answering emails or scrolling through timelines. Are you one of them? Part of balancing your life is setting the foundation from the beginning of each day. What better way to start the day with a little time just to yourself? It’s hard enough to get a moment to yourself throughout the day so waking up and taking a long shower or relaxing bath, reading a few pages from that book you’ve been wanting to dive into or a little prayer or meditation could make a huge difference. You may have to wake up just a little earlier to get that time in at the gym, but if it makes you happier, prioritize it! Maintain your sanity by taking care of your needs before conquering the rest of the day.
Busy people generally have to have something that keeps them on schedule through the day, otherwise a task is bound to be forgotten. Writing things down is a lost art that should be revamped. It’s been scientifically proven that writing (not typing) helps us to retain information (remember those handwritten class notes from your school days?) Write down your schedule, write down your to-dos, write down those phone meetings that you don’t want to forget. Creating lists that you can constantly refer back to helps to keep the day on track and keep you feeling in control.
Ever heard of burnout? If you don’t set some boundaries in your life, that’s where you’re headed. Personal boundaries are one thing; you’ve got to learn how to say ‘no’. Don’t spread yourself thin trying to please everyone and by taking on too many obligations. The same goes for work. If you have a “boss”, you may not be able to flat out tell them ‘no’ without repercussions. Instead, be honest with your supervisors about your work load and deadlines. Use those lists and schedules from the previous point to plan out projects in a way that allows you the time you need to complete them. If you feel overwhelmed, communicate that information and go from there. Remember that jobs will replace you in a moment, don’t stress yourself out by overdoing it.
Stick to the plan
Sometimes plans fail! It’s okay, it’s life. Just because you have your schedule written down and have every activity in your day planned down to the minute doesn’t mean that outside factors won’t inevitably come up and throw a wrench in your plans. All we can do with situations beyond our control is adapt and move on.
Find your support system
In the midst of juggling work and real life, don’t forget the ones who matter more than anything: your family and friends. It’s easy to neglect the ones we’re grinding so hard for, but don’t be so busy that you look up and realize that you’ve missed too much time with them. Besides spending quality time, your family and those closest to you are most likely the ones you’ll rely on as your support system. They’ll be the ones to lend an extra set of hands, encourage you, or do whatever you need to keep the scales balanced. Keep those relationships a priority and above all, keep your peace.