Family LIfe

Getting it All Together Again!
by Kim Green-Spangler

Have you been feeling a little tipsy lately? Nope, I'm not talking about alcohol, but rather a little off-balance in life's other areas. You know, never enough time to accomplish everything on your list, NEVER having any time for yourself, or never feeling like you can actually just sit down and catch your breath. Well don't despair. Moms are the most overworked segment of the entire population. There's always too much on their plates, never enough time in a day to get everything done that they set out to do, while taking care of their loved ones. But there is help. January is Life Balance Month--a month dedicated to helping moms recognize imbalance and find ways to implement, secure and maintain balance in their daily worlds.

How do you know when things are a bit out of whack? A lack of balance in one's life can manifest itself in a number of ways. Feelings of frustration and inadequacy can begin to surface, as well as feeling impatient and being irritable. In addition, some physical symptoms can occur. Frequent headaches, chronic pains, indigestion, and weight fluctuations have all been identified as symptoms of stress. And imbalance is typically the stressor.

So, what to do? Simply . . . anything and everything that can be done to provide yourself with some emotional relief. This is definitely a case for the sooner the better. But first the cause must be identified. It's so easy to blame life and daily chores, but if you had been successfully dealing with regular mom duties until your boss implemented a "mandatory overtime" environment, then it's safe to assume that that is the trigger. Or if things were operating fairly smooth until you started working from home, then that may be the problem. The key to finding the solution is successfully identifying the problem. Once the problem is found, steps must be taken to solve it. Some imbalance will be easier to solve such as implementing an earlier bedtime, or getting a mother's helper; while others may require more patience and effort like when you need to find a new job. No matter the issue, imbalance does require some kind of action. Most importantly, don't be afraid to ask for help when/if you need it.

Imbalance is a part of life. You can be guaranteed of very few things, except that life will continuously throw a few curve balls and it will be up to you to make them work. This said, sometimes the house will run smoothly, parenting will seem like a breeze, work will be going great, and our relationships will thrive, but typically not at the same time. The key is to recognize which area is out of balance and switch the focus, but not all of the effort, into that needy area. Achieving balance really does require juggling. The idea is to juggle the responsibility while making it as stress-free as possible. Remember to revel in what is going right and give yourself (and those around you) proper kudos for a job well done. Only after well-deserved pats should the other issue(s) be addressed. Remember what we focus on is what seems to appear most frequently. So wouldn't it be smart to focus on positive things instead of the negative? Yes, it's both smart and healthy! Make 2015 a much more balanced year.

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