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10 ways to find greater balance

Uncategorized Jan 03, 2018

Ever feel like you could hit pause?

Do you crave some gaps in your life, some breathing space, a bit of downtime?

In today’s crazy, high-speed world, many of us have transitioned from human beings to human-doings. No matter how many time-saving devices we own, we still managed to feel stretched because of all the things we try to cram into our every waking hour.

What we actually need is balance.

Balance in all areas of life; our health, our relationships, our personal life and our work.

A bit of zig, a bit of zag.

A bit of yin, a bit of yang.

Like a smoothie for breakfast but perhaps a glass of wine with dinner.

Like exercising 3 times a week, but pyjama day on Sunday.

Like quality family time, a regular date night, but a walk alone on the beach too.

Balance keeps us centred, and balance keeps us sane.

Too many late nights = exhausted

Too much work = burnt out

Too much alone time = isolated

Too much electronic stimulation = wired and disconnected…

Too little of what we need, or even too much of a good thing, will leave us feeling imbalanced.

Here are ten sure fire ways to feel balanced;

1.    Awareness: know yourself and what keeps you on an even keel. If you need 8 hours of sleep each night, don’t make do with 5. If you need a certain amount of quiet contemplation, don’t sign up for full-on, intensive experiences unless your needs can be met (think week-long Glastonbury festival without the Glamping option where you can hide away in your yurt!)

2.    Have boundaries: don’t mix work and family time, when you clock off be present at home, don’t sit in the kitchen making dinner and finishing off your emails. Blurry edges leads to rushed work and mischievous children.

3.    Priorities: Know what you must have in your life and what is top of your ‘Important’ list. If feeling healthy is important to you, make time for your health. If music speaks to your soul, make time for music.

4.    Delegate: don’t be the maid. Even though you may be able to do things better and more quickly…learn to delegate at home and in work. You can’t do it all and feel rested; there aren’t enough hours in the day.

5.    Have the courage to say NO: we all want to be liked and be likeable, sometimes this results in us agreeing to jobs we don’t want to do and we don’t have time for. In order to be balanced we need to fiercely protect our time and save some of it for self-care.

6.    Self-care: mums are givers, but you can’t pour out love and care for others if you are running on empty. Keep yourself topped up energetically, physically and emotionally by putting your needs equal first, and even first some of the time!

7.    FOMO (fear of missing out): there are so many things to do and see, so many opportunities to grab and social media brings them right to us via our phones. We cannot do it all (physically) so let go of the need to try. Our fear of missing out steals the moment we are in, as we crane our necks to see what else is on offer.

8.    Comparing: your recipe for a balanced life is unique to you. So although it is lovely to enjoy other people’s joy and success, refrain from comparing your life to theirs, all you’re seeing is the highlights! You are not them, you cannot be them, you are your own magnificent self, why would you try to be anyone else? As Judy Garland so eloquently put it ‘Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.’

9.    Nurture a vision of your balanced self: take time to visualise your ‘balanced self’ clearly. How does she look? How does she spend her time? What does she do? What does she NOT do? What does she eat? If you want toned and healthy then make exercise a priority. If you want to grow your income, get focused on the right things in your business. We all know deep down, who we aspire to be and when we ignore that version, we feel out of balance.

10. Review: our lives are constantly changing, nothing stays still. Our circumstances change, our priorities change, we need to adapt and grow alongside our vision and life to remain in balance. Review and correct your course regularly. To quote Nathan Morris, “Edit your life frequently and ruthlessly. It's your masterpiece after all.”

Emily Thorpe is an Mpower Expert on helping mums get free of parenting guilt and overwhelm and enjoy motherhood with greater happiness, flow and balance - a qualified coach, author and speaker, Emily also facilitates Mpower mastermind groups in Brighton and central London

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