Is it a Dream or is it Real?
I have wondered about work/life balance, just like I think everyone has. It is something that I work on every day and it is something that I help others work on, too.
Having a balanced life feels like an elusive dream for many of us and every year it is high on the list of things to change. There is no doubt that our lives are filled with demands pulling at us from many different directions, sometimes with no end in sight. But small choices can make a big difference in getting your life back into balance.
Here are some simple choices you can make in your day to help achieve more balance and fulfillment:
- Choose your leisure activities wisely. You only have a limited number of hours in a day for fun, so spend them on things you really enjoy.
- When someone asks you to do something, don’t just say “yes”, only to regret it later. First consider how that thing will impact your work-life balance.
- Plan at least one task every day that you know you will complete, and that you know you will feel good about. Then do it.
- Identify the most stressful things in your life, and make simple changes so they feel less stressful.
You have the power to make these small, simple choices throughout the day for big impact. Set the intention and consciously move toward creating the ideal balanced life that you desire. Balance is something that everyone deserves! Try these small steps and see your life take a turn toward work/life balance. You are worth it!
My daughter brought this poem home with her from school and it really spoke to me on a lot of levels. I can see many different experiences in my life that this talks to. For me, these are powerful words. I am not sure who wrote it, and if someone knows please let me know so that I can give them credit, a big “THANK YOU”, and then a standing ovation!
I’ve learned ~ that you cannot make someone love you. All you can do is be someone who can be loved. The rest is up to them.
I’ve learned ~ that no matter how much I care, some people just don’t care back.
I’ve learned ~ that it takes years to build up trust, and only seconds to destroy it.
I’ve learned ~ that it’s not what you have in your life but who you have in your life that counts.
I’ve learned ~ that you can get by on charm for about 15 minutes. After that, you’d better know something.
I’ve learned ~ that you shouldn’t compare yourself to the best others can do.
I’ve learned ~ that you can do something in an instant that will give you heartache for life.
I’ve learned ~ that it’s taking me a long time to become the person I want to be.
I’ve learned ~ that you should always leave loved one with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.
I’ve learned ~ that you can keep going long after you can’t.
I’ve learned~ that we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.
I’ve learned ~ that either you control your attitude or it controls you.
I’ve learned ~ that regardless of how hot and steamy a relationship is at first, the passion fades and there had better be something else to take it’s place.
I’ve learned ~ that heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.
I’ve learned ~ that money is a lousy way of keeping score.
I’ve learned ~ that my best friend and I can do anything or nothing and have the best time.
I’ve learned ~ that sometimes the people you expect to kick you when you’re down will be the ones to help you get back up.
I’ve learned ~ that sometime when I’m angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn’t give me the right to be cruel.
I’ve learned ~ that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.
I’ve learned ~ that just because someone doesn’t love you the way you want them to doesn’t mean they don’t love you with all they have.
I’ve learned ~ that maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you’ve had and what you’ve learned from them and less to do with how many birthdays you’ve celebrated.
I’ve learned ~ that you should never tell a child theirs dreams are unlikely or outlandish. Few things are more humiliating, and what a tragedy it would be if they believed it.
I’ve learned ~ that your family won’t always be there for you. If may seem funny, but people you aren’t related to can take care of you and love you and teach you to trust people again. Families aren’t biological.
I’ve learned ~ that no matter how good a friend is, they’re going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.
I’ve learned ~ that it isn’t always enough to be forgiven by others. Sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.
I’ve learned ~ that no matter how bad your heart is broken, the world doesn’t stop for your grief.
I’ve learned ~ that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.
I’ve learned ~ that just because two people argue, it doesn’t mean they don’t love each other. And just because they don’t argue, it doesn’t mean they do.
I’ve learned ~ that we don’t have to change friends if we understand that friends change.
I’ve learned ~ that you should be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.
I’ve learned ~ that two people can look at the exact same thing and see something totally different.
I’ve learned ~ that no matter how you try to protect your children, they will eventually get hurt and you will hurt in the process.
I’ve learned ~ that your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don’t even know you.
I’ve learned ~ that even when you think you have no more to give,when a friend cries out to you, you will find the strength to help.
I’ve learned ~ that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.
I’ve learned ~ that the people you care about most in life are taken from you too soon.
I’ve learned ~ that it’s hard to determine where to draw the line between being nice and not hurting people’s feelings and standing up for what you believe.
The Holidays are here! I can’t believe how fast they have come up on me…but I always seem to feel that way right about now. I seem to waffle between loving them and being overwhelmed with them. I am sure that it has something to do with the situation and/or “hat” – my “wife, mom, coach, teacher, domestic goddess, taxi driver, accountant, organizer” hat – I am wearing at the particular moment that I feel the love or the stress. I think that as a caregiver, it is pretty normal to experience it all, even when it seems magnified during the Holidays.
So, I’ve been thinking about ways that I can consciously live each day during the Holidays and beyond, fully engaged and doing what I want to be doing without fear of being overwhelmed and possible burnout. One of the first things that comes to mind is to find an activity that I can do for myself that pampers me or engages me. Some things that come to mind, without letting myself pass judgement or even start with excuses about why they won’t work are: reading fiction, doing something with yarn, walking, working on my stack of family photos.
Have you thought about what you could do to create some “you” time in your life? The benefits of creating that space for youself are:
- helping you find balance in your life
- doing something that you love, for yourself
- being able to take your ‘caregiver’ hat off and rest
- having that time to just “be”
- recharging your energy and focus
- helping to maintain a positive mental attitude
In the midst of this Holiday season, I hope that you will find some time to start thinking about some ways that you can carve out some “you” time. I am looking forward to finding my yarn and getting started on a project!
There is a big debate about whether someone really can achieve work-life balance. I think it’s all in your perspective. How about you?
As I see it, work-life balance is not a destination: it’s not something that you achieve and then you are done. Instead, life balance is a series of adjustments that you make all through the day everyday that either move you toward or away from balance. The key is to increase your awareness when making these decisions. Instead of making them instinctively, determine in the moment if the decision will move you toward balance.
Something as simple as being aware of the decisions you make and actions you take will naturally cause you to move more toward a life of balance.
So, how about you? What do you think of the “big debate”? Do you think you can create life balance with your choices and actions? Are you taking the time to be aware of yourself and what you want your balance to be and look like? I am really working on taking the time that I need to make the decisions I want based, on where I want to be in life. It is a learning experience with lots of opportunities! I am excited with what I have learned and where I am headed. I hope that you are, too!
I can’t believe that the Holidays are just around the corner! This year has been an amazing year for me both professionally and personally. As I look back over the year, I realize that my balance was a bit off ~ I did much more professional development and business work then I did for my personal life. Now, that I have said it out loud, I can also say that I am feeling the lopsidedness. I am thrilled with what I have accomplished, don’t get me wrong, but I also want to take a step back and really focus on getting myself back into balance. Work-life balance – it sure sounds good and what does it mean….better yet, how do you get some?
As I see it, work-life balance is the dynamic interaction between “work” and “life”. “Work” is those tasks you must do to keep your life functioning ~ paid or unpaid, inside or outside the home. And “life” is those things you do for your own personal fulfillment ~ the things we really enjoy and want to do. “Balance” is the ideal blend of those two areas. Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?
So, getting myself into some work-life balance is at the top of my to-do list for the upcoming months. I love being a caregiver; it is a big part of who I am. I also know that being in balance will help me continue doing what I am a passionate about. What about you? Are you ready to find some balance in your life?
Here are some ways to begin to work on balance:
*Become aware of how you are spending your time. Notice where you are satisfied, where you may be unbalanced, and what you would like to change.
*Create your vision of a balanced day. How do you desire your ideal day to look while enjoying the perfect combination of “work” and “life”?
*Identify the obstacles that interfere with your quest for balance such as your own thoughts, words, and actions. Also look at other obstacles such as people’s opinions, schedules, and actions.
*And finally, put it all into “action”. Awareness, desire, and identifying your obstacles are important, but to move toward balance, you need to take action. Make choices that move you toward balance and watch your life bloom. Work-life balance is not a destination. It is a dynamic state of awareness and choices. I hope that these simple tips to help move you toward the life you desire!
What time is it at your place? For me, it has been a time of fun and relaxation as summer starts here in Idaho. The kids are out of school and the days have gotten longer with more sunshine and beautiful blue skies. This is also the time that I reflect on my plans and goals for the upcoming week, month, and year. I love to do that at least once every six months…I use it as kind of a “check in” to make sure that I am still following my passion, my life purpose, and reaching for my goals. And, I am happy to report that it is all on track!
What do you do with your time? Do you ever take time to check in with yourself about where you are and where you are headed? What have you found out? What about where you have been? If things on the inside aren’t as they appear on the outside…where is the disconnect? Do you know where you are headed; what your passions, life purpose? Get started re-connecting with yourself. It’s about time!
I grew up in Oregon, along the Salem/Portland corridor (I-5). I spent my younger years in Salem and I spent my college time and medical training time in Portland. I loved the environment (even all the rain!) and all the things that there was to do, see, and experience there. It was fast paced, engaging, and a wonderful place to grow up. The memories are wonderful!
Amid all that hustle and bustle, I found two Places that I could go to relax, unwind, re-center, and just “be”. One of them was the coast, specifically Lincoln City, and the other was Silver Creek Falls, a state park. (can you tell I love water?) I am not sure when I started going there, but as I hit my late teens, I made it a point to go there frequently, sometimes with close friends, but mostly when I needed time by myself. I think that the need to “be” was something that came from within myself. I am glad that I listened to that little voice inside because it helped to create a habit of listening and honoring myself enough to take the time to “be”.
I don’t live in Oregon anymore, haven’t for about 23 years, and I really miss it! I haven’t found a Place where I live now that gives me that same peace and quiet, or connection that the Coast and the Falls did; those are definitely my favorite places, bar none. There is a Place that is close, the barn where my horses are, but it doesn’t have quite the same feel and connection to me. However, I have found that I can still go to my favorites in my head and heart, if I take the time to do it. I have learned how to center, create space, and balance by going within myself using a vision of where I want to be along with sounds and even smells that I remember. It is a powerful experience! Sometimes I don’t want to leave!
Do you have a Place that you go to to relax, unwind and just “be”? Where is it and how often do you go? It is so important to take care of yourself and this is a great way to really connect to yourself and learn about what is “going on in the background”, so to speak. The benefits are huge and everlasting! The constant demands of others, in whatever role that we play, can be hard to live with over time. Stress, burnout, and even withdrawal can be signs that you have reached maximum overload. Remember that when you are balanced within yourself, it makes caring for others, including yourself, so much easier and gratifying; caring that comes from a place of “want to” and not “have to”.
Where is your Place? Can you get there today, one way or another? Will you give yourself the gift to go there today? I would love to hear from you about the Places that are important to you and why. Sometimes just sharing or talking about them can take you there…I am feeling the beach sand between my toes right now!
“Time is life. It is irreversible and irreplaceable. To waste your time to to waste your life, but to master your time is is to master your life and make the most of it.” ~ Alan Lakein
Refuse to feel USED by life ~ instead, make full use of it!
To do this, we initially need to take control of the time of our lives. Time management is life management, from the inside out. It’s an INSIDE job and you already have everything you need. You have the power to create a life of meaning, fulfillment and joy. Your challenge is to find what works for you! Review all the you know and make your own decisions. To do this, you’ll need to:
- Get to know yourself ~ your desires and passions, rhythms, styles, challenges, needs and habits.
- Be aware that you always have a choice. Claim your independence and power to choose what is right for your life, moment by moment.
“Until you value yourself, you will not value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” ~ M. Scott Peck
I love benedictions! A benediction is an utterance of good wishes, in the form of a blessing that one bestows upon another. This particular one is one I received from someone that I know and I loved it so much that I want to pass it on.
“In 2011, I wish for you these things:
*May you reflect on 2010 and feel GRATEFUL.
Grateful for your accomplishments and success, and even for the challenges that helped you grow in wisdom and experience!
*May you look t0 2011 and be filled with HOPE.
Hope for all things that matter to you ~ love, family, relationships, good health, joy, and prosperity.
*May you approach 2011 with BELIEF.
Belief that you can be abundant. Belief that you deserve to be prosperous and belief that you bring value to those that you serve.
*And may you step into 2011 with great ANTICIPATION.
Anticipation for success in all areas of your life, and for the achievement of all your dreams.”
This is what I wish for you ~ gratitude, hope, belief, and anticipation.
Here’s to an amazing 2011!
“Everything you need you already have. You are complete right now. You are a whole, total person, not an apprentice person on the way to someplace else.” ~ Wayne Dyer
Close your eyes and imagine that everything that you have and everything that you are is enough. You don’t need to be better or different – you are great just the way you are!
Do you choose to experience the power, peace and contentment that understanding and living those words brings you? As you go into the New Year, is this perspective or shift in your thinking one that you try on and live with for awhile? Moving into this with grace and acceptance does not mean that we stop growing and learning. When we accept who we are now, we open the doors to our own inspirations to do and be even more! Can you imagine the possibilities?!
“Who you are is really enough!” ~ Oriah Mountain Dreamer
“Wherever you are is always the right place. There is never a need to fix anything, to hitch up the bootstraps of the soul and start at some higher place. Start right where you are.” ~ Julia Cameron