One of those mornings
This morning I rushed around packing lunches, putting shoes on, brushing little teeth, getting myself ready and backpacks organised for school so we could rush out the door in the typical morning chaos. With one car in for a service, I packed both kids in the car to do school/nursery drop off while my husband ran out to catch a taxi. I arrived late to school, trying to coax the kids to hurry. Now if you have young children you will know, the moment you mention that you are in hurry they seem to suddenly develop a fascination for everything around them! The tree leaves, cars, ants on the ground, their shoes, a bird flying by, that the shorts they wear everyday have pockets! Or alternatively, they grow roots and suddenly despite being 1/4 of your size you are physically unable to move them. Instead you find yourself frazzled, repeatedly encouraging one step at a time while reminding them that school is starting “right now”.
When I arrived back home, I tiredly walked past the dishes waiting in the sink; the toys needing tidying on the floor; the waiting to-do list on my desk and the work messages sitting in my inbox. I went into my bedroom to finish folding the human size pile of laundry and saw the extra clothes my son needed for nursery and my daughter’s sweater had been forgotten. All this and it wasn’t even 8:30am. I sat down on my bed close to frustrated tears and closed my eyes.
How do you do it?
When I meet new people I often get asked: “How do you balance it all?”. I am a mom of two small children; a wife; a student; a solopreneur; the director and organizer of my house. On top of that I am also a woman who also needs time for her own health, exercise, hobbies, friends, and me-time. My response is often “You just do it”. There is no magic secret or key to managing everything you need to all the time. There are only choices: What is important to me? Will I prioritize my values or let others decide my priorities for me? How I will react to the challenges I face?
Pressure for Perfection
There is also no such thing as perfect balance all the time. When you imagine a measurement scale in perfect balance, it is important to remember how it tips and sways before it finds balance. Also, if something is placed on the table the scale will again realign itself by tipping back and forth until it settles. Life is like that too. We need to be prepared to have ups and downs. There are days that I feel like I’ve got my life in good balance and I am moving forward. However, there are also days like today where it doesn’t go the way I have planned and it can all seem too much. I believe that part of living my life in balance is also acknowledging that we are all human. Most importantly I think is to give myself a break. When something happens that throws me off it is important to stay true to the core of my balance which is led by my values. This is my why.
How to re-focus
On days like today, I acknowledge that I’m struggling and instead of letting that spiral into the world is against me and negative self-talk.
I take the moments that I need to get myself together and do something just for me. This can be anything that I enjoy, like go for a walk or have a quite moment with a coffee. Then I dig in and get something done. Every time. Every day. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication. However, my reward is that I have a life filled with what is most important to me – my family, helping others, challenging myself, and time to spend on activities and people I love.
I believe that we need to give ourselves a break and some credit for everything that we do. Celebrate the small wins and know when to take some time off. Balance is something that starts from within, is unique to each of us and needs to be worked on.
All the best,