Most of life is a juggle. The juggle is different for everyone, but exists nonetheless. The
question is: how are you handling the chaos in your life? Are you able to find balance amidst the constant ebb and flow of your responsibilities and stressors? If your immediate response to these questions was to sink into your chair in defeat, you might want to keep reading.
It's Fine. I'm Fine. Everything's Fine.
How long have you been repeating that beloved mantra? It's great to get through things once in a while, but if you find yourself sounding like a broken record, it may be time to consider a new approach.
If you're anything like me, you probably think you can do all-the-things with little to no help and you'll be no worse for the wear. Wrong. You may not see it in the moment, but if you are not taking care of yourself, you'll eventually suffer consequences. Those consequences could look like health issues, they could look like relationships suffering. Those consequences could be extremely costly, not only to you, but to those you care about. So what can you do to avoid going down a potentially harmful path?
1. Ask for help.
I know, I know. You hate this idea. You think it makes you weak. You think it makes you an inconvenience. You think nobody wants to help anyway. Wrong again. It takes a lot to be able to acknowledge that you need to slow down or ask for help! And if you are a person that views asking as a weakness, let me flip the narrative for you....
What's harder: asking for help or doing it yourself?
Bet you said it's easier to just do it yourself, didn't you? You know what that means?
It means it actually would require MORE STRENGTH from you to be able to say you need the assist. So you see... it's not weakness. To the contrary, for someone like you, it takes a significant amount of STRENGTH!
Work. Family. Pay bills.
Meetings. Volunteering. Partners.
Cooking. Exercising. Cleaning.
Friends. Appointments. Pets. Kids.
Wait. What's that?
2. Take Time Out.
Yes you can. And, yes, you absolutely NEED to. I know it seems like an impossible ask. There is no extra time, right? Maybe you wouldn't know what to do with it anyway, right? You might be thinking, "if I take time out, how is all of this going to get done?"
Well, now that I've got you learning to ask for help, I'm going to push you one step further.
Time out doesn't mean you quit. It doesn't mean you failed or gave up or even don't complete things. Time out means PRIORITIZE - and recognize that YOU ARE A PRIORITY!
Guess what. The dishes in the sink... not going anywhere and they're not hurting anything by being there a bit longer. The clothes in the dryer? So what, they get wrinkled. You set that sucker on fluff later when you are going to be ready to fold them.
But, who will entertain my kids? Let them entertain themselves. Extra screen time??? *GASP*
I said take time out. I didn't say do it for the rest of life! A little extra screen time now and then so that you can take a guilt free breather is not going to kill anyone. Oh, did I just dare say "guilt free"? You bet. Because, a little secret that we all struggle to comprehend is that guilt actually serves ZERO purpose. Ditch it. Along with the idea that you have to be the perfect anything! Your spouse, your kids, your mom, your friends... they don't need perfect from you. They need a whole, healthy damn person! You can give them that!
Ughhhhhh.... I know. You're ready to stop reading, right? Don't. You've come this far. Hear me out.
Look. I didn't say run a damn marathon every week (or ever). I'm saying do SOMETHING, and do it routinely. If you end up enjoying it, if exercise is your jam, awesome! Then it can double as part of your "time out".
Regardless, while it sounds counter intuitive, if you want to find more energy, you need to do some exercise. Stress and chaos are extremely draining... exhausting even. So start with something small. Take a brisk walk during a lunch break. Do a set of squats every time you take a bathroom break. Plank before bed. Take a fitness class and break a sweat. Walk on the treadmill and watch your favorite, binge-worthy, guilty pleasure. Lift weights.
I don't care what it is, just do it.
Here's why in the most simple form...
Exercise sends the good stuff (oxygen and nutrients) around within your body. Your body thinks it's a party and starts showing up with gifts for the host to say thanks.... things like, better sleep (the gift that keeps on giving!), more energy and a better "working environment" (aka. more efficient cardiovascular system, stronger- more flexible muscles & joints, etc.), and let's not ignore the mood boost and *ahem* improved sex life.
It's tough, but, trust me- you can do this!
I know you're overwhelmed and it seems difficult to make changes when you're just barely getting through it all. I promise that if you truly work to achieve these three things in your life, you'll see that better balance you're longing for. You will manage your day-to-day even better than you do now! Give yourself the space to become whole and dare I say, happy!
Need help getting started? Look into my "Lighten the Load" introductory coaching session.