BY JESSIKA SANDLER
We often hear of the importance of being “In Balance”, but what does this really mean? And why is it important to seek balance in our busy lives?
Being in balance requires actively managing our professional and personal life in maintainable ways that keep ourselves happy and content. It’s having the time and commitment to serve our own interests both professionally and personally. As mothers, when our lives are so full and busy we often forget to “check in” with ourselves and determine how content we are. We are in charge of owning our own happiness and sometimes this requires a little work.
The best way to determine how in balance you are is to conduct an audit of the key areas that make up your life. This audit will allow you to discover how much energy you are putting in to the key areas in your life. Some examples of key life areas may be health, career/ business, family, friends, personal growth, partner and finances (but are not limited to these). You can give yourself a grade on a scale out of 10 for each of these elements to see how you score.
Then ask yourself, what would the ideal level of attention (or score) be for you in each life area? You can determine a score out of 10 that would be more appropriate to facilitate a more balanced life. Once you have identified the areas that need attention, it’s time to plan the actions needed to regain balance. Beginning with the neglected areas, what things do you need to start doing to regain balance? In the areas that currently sap your energy and time, what can you stop doing or do less of?
Once you have determined this, you need to take action – make a commitment to work on creating a more balanced life – whatever that looks like to you. Don’t feel pressured by others’ perceived lifestyles. Do what works for you. You may need to put your foot on the pedal to drive effort in the areas that have scored poorly or you may need to take your foot off the pedal in some of the areas that you focus too much of your attention on to allow focus in other areas. You can do this by creating meaningful goals around achieving this. Be mindful that it’s important to be honest and authentic with yourself.
If you find that time pressures are too overwhelming, and you are struggling with creating or maintaining your goals for a life in balance (as busy mums in particular), you may find it helpful to start with creating one small goal at a time. Or, you may wish to begin a checklist of achievable tasks that you can tick off after you have completed them. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing how productive you can be and how quickly the “to do” list is completed. This will be the beginning of achieving a more balanced lifestyle.
It’s important to keep in mind that life balance is a perceived state that is always shifting, therefore, you may need to conduct life audits every 6-12 months or when you see fit.
Being in balance is personal to you – it’s your model of success. Only you will know when your life is or isn’t in balance. What you will know is that when you have achieved balance you will feel more empowered, more fulfilled, calmer, and happier and therefore be more successful in all that you do.
Jessika Sandler holds an honours degree in Human Resource Management (UNSW), is an ICG Certified Credentialed Practitioner of Coaching and is accredited in Insights Personality Profiling.