Finding and nurturing balance in our lives is one of the most important things we can do. But it’s also one of the most challenging. All too often we find ourselves excelling in one aspect of our life, to the detriment of another. Do you find yourself neglecting your health when you’re going through a particularly busy time at work? Is a bad relationship eating up your energy, leaving you with very little to put into anything else? Whichever way the scales are leaning, it’s a good idea to start working at creating more balance in your life. Here’s a couple of steps you can take to help.
Define what balance is for you
It’s difficult to work towards something, without a good understanding of what exactly that thing is. A balanced life will look different to every person depending on where your priorities lie, so it’s important that you spend some time defining it for yourself. Focus on figuring out what works for you, without putting too much importance on what other people think or expect. Also remember that the right balance for you today, may not be the right balance for you tomorrow. As your priorities change, so too will your idea of a balanced life, so make sure that you’re redefining what makes you feel balanced as you go.
It’s a process
Remember that balance is not a final goal, but an ongoing process. You can’t expect to go through your entire life feeling entirely calm, relaxed and content. Try not to be too hard on yourself if you have a frantic and unbalanced day. Rather accept that life happens, and refocus your attention to be more balanced tomorrow. That’s why it’s important to view balance in your life over a period of time. That time period should be minimum a week, but could be as long as a month. By analysing your life in this way, you’ll be able to gain a far deeper understanding of your current state of balance and where your imbalances lie.
To keep balance in your life, you first have to figure out what boundaries you need and then stick to them. Remember to not only set boundaries for your work life, but for all aspects of your life such as your health, personal development and relationships. Think about what your non-negotiables are and what your nice-to-haves are, so that you know where you’re able to compromise when the situation calls for it.
Having a balanced life means being realistic, so make sure you’re not setting your expectations too high. In reality, you aren’t always going to be able to get everything done. And guess what? That’s okay. Life and circumstances are constantly changing and if we’re ever going to keep up we must be able to adapt. Be careful not to put too much pressure on yourself to excel in every area of your life, all of the time. Rather, simply refocus today on what you weren’t able to prioritise yesterday.
By being present and entirely focused on the task at hand, you’re sure to find that you’re more productive and able to get more out of your time. Being balanced doesn’t mean simply dividing your time evenly between your key priorities. It’s about truly being engaged in those activities, allowing yourself the opportunity to gain everything you can from the experience, whether at work or spending quality time with your family or friends.
As with many things in life, if you want it you have to go for it. It is the same with having balance in your life - you have to create it. I assure you that you are not alone in striving to create balance in life. In TAC She Sisterhood you will find the support from a lot of likeminded women on the journey to create a life and career where they thrive, come and join us!
Remember it is never to late to create a life and career you love.
HANNA GIRLING, wife, mother, business owner, mindset coach, sport enthusiast and forever an optimist.