All the snow melted here on Monday, then last night we were pelted with snow and all is covered again. Which means a snow day for my boys. Hopefully it will warm up enough for us to get out in the snow and play. As is our tradition on snow days this morning we will snuggle up with a movie, I am looking forward to it, today's movie the critically acclaimed Here Comes the Boom.
I have mentioned before that when I decided to start a blog, I purchased and downloaded a book from BloggyMoms. The guide is entitled, Bloggy Mom's Guide to a Better Blog Months 1-3. It gives tasks each week to help you create, organize and start up a blog. I have really enjoyed working through the guide. At the end of each weekly section it gives a writing prompt for each day of that week. When I started my blog a little over a month ago, I decided to use these as my question's of the day at the end of each post. (Day One).
Last week one of the prompts was What inspires you (What inspires you) which lended itself to entire post. This week as I looked over the prompts, I found another one that lends itself to an entire post.
Question of the day:
How do you create balance in your life?
I think creating balance in life is hard. For me I work to find balance with my husband, children, household responsibilities, responsibilities at my boys school as well as finding time for exercise and just time to be Me.
I find it to be a tricky formula making time for all of my responsibilities and relationships. I know if I don't find the right balance each day, I am not giving my best to anyone. I also do my best not to be so scheduled that I don't give myself a few minutes for myself or to be spontaneous.
Here are strategies I use to create balance in my life:
- Use a Calendar/Planner: I am a big calendar person. I use Google Calendar on my computer which syncs to the calendar on my phone as well as to the Planner Plus App on my iPad. (A quick note, Planner Plus is a phenomenal app in my world, it is just like a paper planner but on my iPad-it has daily, weekly and monthly views as well as to-do lists and notes all in one app-my dream come true! I hope they come out with a version for the iPhone) I also have a calendar on the fridge for everyone else in the family to see. This helps to see what is happening each day and what is coming up.
- Make a To-Do List: I think to-do lists are my most important item in creating balance in my life. I make a to-do list every Sunday for the week. I look at the schedule for the week and then add to-do's to each day. I look at days that are busy and put fewer to-do's on that day, knowing I won't have lot's of time to get it done. Why add extra work to a busy day, that's setting myself up to not get things done. Each night I look over the to-do list for that day and look at what didn't get done because things don't get done sometimes. With kids, a husband, playdates, activities and life things come up that are unavoidable. It is not a big deal if something didn't get done but I make sure to move it to another day that week or next week if it is not something that has to get done.
- Split up bigger weekly jobs (if possible): If you have weekly jobs or big projects, split them between a few days. For example, putting a job like clean the house on my to do list for one day is too much. If I can help it I don't want to spend an entire day cleaning my house. A few years ago I split my cleaning up. So Sunday's- bedrooms, Monday's-bathrooms, Tuesday's-main floor, Wednesday's-kitchen, Thursday's-basement, Friday and Saturday are off. This makes my life a little easier, rather than cleaning for 4 hours in one day, I do a maximum of an hour a day.
- Schedule your day: As sad as it sounds, schedule your day. I break my day down and schedule blocks of time on my calendar for all the things I need to get done. I make sure to add some wiggle time if things go wrong or something comes up. Every night I look at the next day and at my to do list and break it down. So I schedule in exercise, cleaning, cooking, while looking at the activities that are already on the calendar and putting the to do's in between. I, of course, add in time to surf the web, write my blog and free time. I know it sounds over scheduled but for me it helps me stay on track with what I want to get done and keeps me from being overwhelmed.
- Take a deep breath: Yes, I am a scheduler, to-do list maker and a planner. I plan out everything, my weekly meals, my weekly workouts, my days, etc. Doing all of this keeps my stress level lower because I am a type A personality and need to be on top of things. But, in order to create balance I also make sure to just let go sometimes and realize that if things don't get done they don't get done and life goes on, tomorrow is another day. I can't be so scheduled that I prevent myself from being spontaneous and dropping everything to have a lunch with a friend or snuggle up and watch a movie with my boys because it's a snow day. My to do list will get done another day and the world will not fall apart.
- Family time: I think the one of the most important ways I find balance in my life is to spend time with my family. It keeps me centered and grounded. I love having dinner with my family, snuggling up and reading with my boys every night and just being with them. They are everything to me and without them my life would be completely unbalanced.
- Me Time: This is the other most important way I find balance in my life. There is not a day that goes by that I don't find sometime for me, even if it is 10 minutes. I love getting up early to exercise, it centers me and gets me ready for the day. Some may say it is selfish to make time for yourself but I think I am a better mom, wife, friend, etc because I find time for me. It is so important to remember what makes you happy and to make sure you are making yourself happy. That is no one else's job but mine.
Everyone has different things that they juggle on a daily basis. These are strategies that work for me. Will they work for everyone, no but they work for me.
How do you find balance in your life?