It’s not as selfish as it sounds. You have needs too, and odds are you are the last thing on your to-do list. Caring for friends and family, work responsibilities, school, and other extracurriculars pull at you from every which way. It’s exhausting being as capable as you are. But honey, your body and soul need to relax and recharge if you are going to take on the world tomorrow. Here are a few ways to find balance between handling all the demands on your time your and finding joy in the day to day.
Just Say No. When you find your social calendar is becoming overwhelming full or you just run out of steam for the day, don’t be afraid to say no. Kindly decline volunteer requests, carpool pleas, and extra hours at work. You know when you are going to reach your limit. In return for a little restraint, you’ll be able to hit the ground running when the time comes.
Meditate. Meditation has transformative powers over your mental health and stress levels. It doesn’t have to be sitting cross-legged with your arms outstretched while you hum, type of meditation. Turn your ringer and alerts off. Find a quiet place, and close your eyes as you listen to a 10 minute guided meditation. It might be hard the first time. You might feel you are wasting precious minutes. In reality, though, you are adding focus to the rest of the minutes in your day—this time spent sitting quietly will make it possible to accomplish all you wish in the future. Here’s a guided meditation to get you started:
Treat Yourself. Sometimes (or always) a little pampering goes a long way. After a particularly hard week or accomplishing a big goal, you deserve a little something extra. Dine somewhere exotic or spend a day at the spa. Maybe retail therapy doesn’t do it for you. Try a drive up to the mountains or to the beach. The point is to get outside your obligations and do something just for fun.
Work Time vs. Personal Time. If you find that work is invading your at home time, stop it in its tracks now. Separating the two worlds may be the only thing keeping you sane. When you are with family and friends, be there! Don’t take work calls (if you can avoid it), and ignore your emails. It can wait. Same goes for work. If you are striving for balance, focus on the tasks at hand and get off Facebook and Twitter. Get in the right mindset for each of your activities and prepare to conquer them all!
Learn to Delegate. From your professional responsibilities to childcare and beyond, you’ll find you are able to reach further in life if you have the ability to delegate successfully. At work, delegate with reasonable expectations and clear instructions, then set that person free. You can relieve yourself of that responsibility, freeing up your mind for greater tasks. If a project comes back differently than expected, analyze its merits and adapt it as needed. At home, build a community of friends and family you can rely on. Whether it is for childcare or a much needed girl’s night out, a helpful support system can change your perspective and give you the strength to overcome anything.
When it comes down to it, taking care of yourself is the best way to ensure you are up to taking care of others. Even the amazing need a little help along the way. Take care of yourself and you will find you are capable of achieving so much more.