Life is demanding, and it’s very easy to feel that things are out of control especially if you are a working mom. But there is a way to bring balance to your life if you make it a priority. Here are 9 simple ways you can incorporate more balance into your life today to be calmer.
It’s easy to spend all day chasing one thing after another on your never-ending to-do list, only to feel that you’ve accomplished nothing at the end of the day. I’ve certainly been there.
You plop into bed stressed, overwhelmed, and exhausted and realized that the tasks you woke up to are still there when you go to bed.
It can be so frustrating.
If you have been feeling out of balance lately, know that rebalancing your life is possible. Here I share 9 strategies you can start using today to being a little bit more balance into your everyday.
Truth is, being balanced means different things to each one of us. To you, being balanced might mean having time to spend with your kids after work. Or it could mean getting home in time to make dinner and put your little ones to bed. Balanced might even mean having a tidy home, and laundry is done each week.
To me, balanced means having time for God, myself, my relationships, my work and my business. It doesn’t mean that it’s equally split between each one; that would be almost impossible, but it does mean that when I have a choice on how I spend my time, I know exactly where my priorities lie.
When I have to decide between one task or another, I ask myself if this will help me build up the things that are important to me.
Another thing is that being balanced does not mean that you are never busy. In fact, you can be balanced even though you are super busy. The key is that we are being busy focusing on the right tasks for this season. It means, we are not wasting time on needless tasks or activities and instead engage on those that are more meaningful.
A busy, balanced life can be meaningful, interesting, and invigorating.
Try these strategies to create balance in your life:
Sometimes we are so busy that the last thing we want to do is stop and pray. I mean who really has the time with a million things seeking your direction and claiming to be urgent?
But prayer can be the single most important thing you can do when you are feeling out of balance. Prayer centers us and places the focus where it belongs – on God and not on ourselves or our hectic schedules.
Do you feel too busy to make time for prayer? Check out this post on how to make time for Jesus even if you are busy. It’s time to fight overwhelm with God’s Words.
See related: How To Make Time for Jesus Even If You Have No Time
It’s very easy in today’s world to buy more things than you need and take on more responsibilities than you can manage. Every extra item and responsibility in your life can create an imbalance. Eliminate the unnecessary and bring more balance into your life.
I often feel overwhelmed when I am not organized because I have too much. Too much on my calendar. Too much clutter. Too many activities on my to-do list. When you simplify, you give yourself the opportunity to focus on the things that truly matter.
Look at your schedule or your activities over the period of a day. Are there any tasks that need to be off your calendar? Prayerfully ask God to help you know which tasks are priorities and which needs to be let go.
Simplify your environment, simplify your calendar, and simplify your home to create a more balanced life.
3. MAKE YOUR HEALTH A PRIORITY
When life gets hectic, the first thing we ignore is our own self-care. We forget to drink enough water. We have little energy to exercise, and we start to either miss meals or eat too much. Our first response is to sacrifice ourselves for everyone and everything else. This is a mistake. Without good health, life becomes very unbalanced.
When you take good care of yourself, you can take better care of others. When you’re at your best, you shine at work, engage more lovingly with your children, and appreciate the blessings in your life. It might seem selfish to prioritize your own needs and happiness, but everyone in your life will benefit from this mindset.
If you don’t give your health the priority it deserves, your resulting bad health will eventually get your full attention. You cannot accomplish the tasks God has placed on our hearts if you don’t first take care of the temple, He has given you.
Think of one simple thing you can start today to prioritize your self-care. I know things feel out of control and unbalanced right now but the path to a peaceful, calm, and balanced life starts with a healthy YOU.
4. CREATE A SCHEDULE THAT INCLUDES DOWNTIME
This goes with #3 above to prioritize your self-care. It won’t get done unless it is on the calendar. So just like you add prayer to your calendar each day, schedule some time that is just for you.
Downtime isn’t just the time that’s lefts over after your responsibilities are completed. Downtime is something you do on purpose. Plan for it. Make time for it. Knowing you have a break scheduled in the near future will motivate you to spend your time more effectively.
If taking time for yourself to do something that you enjoy and that relaxes you isn’t something you’re doing right now, figure out what you may want to do. Maybe it’s reading a good book or meditating. Maybe it’s getting back into a hobby you used to enjoy. Maybe it’s taking a nap or learning something new. Maybe it’s as simple as having 10 minutes to sit by yourself and think.
5. START A SOUL-NOURISHING MORNING ROUTINE
If you don’t have a morning routine you love right now, it’s time to create one. Starting the day focused on God, strengthening your mind, and body and giving yourself space to prepare for the day ahead, will help you feel so much more balanced.
A morning routine keeps you from playing defense all day and from jumping at everything that comes your way. Instead, a morning routine helps you focus on what needs to get done. (insert Bible verse here).
A simple morning routine can be:
- Prayer and scripture reading
- Active listening to God’s voice
- Review of the calendar for the day/week
It can take as little as 30 minutes.
It’s important to note that the things we don’t do during your morning routine are just as important as the things you choose to do.
For example, I do not check social media or y email until after I have finished my morning routine. I keep a paper calendar for all my events so I know what’s coming that day and what I am going to make for dinner.
You don’t have to do all these in the morning. Pick one or two that will help ground and uplift you and spend 10 minutes on them each morning. When they have become a routine, add 5 more minutes and keep adding 5 minutes until you have a morning routine that keeps you balanced.
6. SPEND TIME ON THE ACTIVITIES THAT MEAN THAT MOST OF YOU
Having a clear priority list is so important in helping you feel balanced. It also helps you say no to things that are not a priority with less guilt. God, others, your family or work are likely on your priority list, but what else do you find meaningful? Hiking? Playing the violin? Reading? Working isn’t the only priority in life. The more time you’re able to spend on enjoyable activities, the more you’ll enjoy your balanced life.
7. SPEND TIME ON YOUR RELATIONSHIPS
One of the most important relationships to cultivate is the one with God. Are you spending enough time with Him to hear His voice? Do you know what He wants you to do during your time here?
Instead of trying to do all the things, focus instead on deepening relationships with your family, kids, spouse, co-workers, extended family and all those God has placed in your path. If the things on your long to-do list keeps you away from deepening your relationships examine whether they are really priorities or simply distractions in your way.
8. GET ENOUGH SLEEP
I know you’re rolling your eyes at this one, probably saying “what do you mean get enough sleep, didn’t you hear I have too much to do?” I hear ya my friend.
But sleep can make such a world of difference on how to approach difficulties and challenges. Here is another thing that not many people are talking about; when you’re sleep-deprived and exhausted, it affects your ability to love.
I was reading 1 Corinthians 13 recently and as I read it, it struck me that when I am exhausted, I do the opposite of what these verses tell us about love. I am not patient nor kind. In fact, I am the opposite, ill-mannered and irritable. And I certainly have no problem using the words “you always” to my family as I keep a record of all the things they have not done right lately. It’s not pretty.
So, you see, when you rest and get enough sleep, it benefits you but also those you love.
Do you sleep less than seven hours each night? If not, let’s find a way to get more sleep; especially if you’re juggling work, home, kids and a family. If you don’t have time for seven hours, it’s time to reexamine your priorities.
9. GIVE YOURSELF GRACE
While things feel out of control right now, your life might be more balanced than you realize. One way to reframe your view of being unbalanced is to recognize that you are not doing things alone. God is with you and is ready to help you when you call to Him. Another way is to look with gratitude on your overwhelm. I know that might sound strange, but can you look at all the things you need to do and thank it and thank God that you have so many blessings and responsibilities? A grateful heart can make a world of difference in how we view our challenges.
Don’t forget to give yourself some grace as well. This could be just a season you are going through. It won’t be like this forever.
IT’S NOT ONE SIZE FITS ALL
I hope these have been helpful to you. Keep in mind that being balanced is different for each of us. It’s important to define what having a “balanced life” means to you.
Balancing your life will be impossible until you clarify what balance means to you. How much time would you spend at work? How much time would you spend at home? How much time will you carve out to pray? How many leisure hours do you need each week? How would you spend those hours?
Create a well-balanced life by choosing your priorities wisely. Grab the Balanced Life Framework to find out how you can start prioritizing the things that matter most to you. Which one are you going to start incorporating into your day to start feeling balanced?