Balance doesn't mean we equally give attention to every aspect of our life. It is about knowing what matters to us, and what our needs, values, and priorities are. The below suggestions are based on my personal 'rules' so feel free to take what resonates and adapt them in a way that makes sense to you. Redefining balance is not about forcing yourself to mimic someone else's way of living, but creating your own so it is sustainable with your lifestyle.
1. Start with daily non-negotiables.
These are daily habits that create the foundation for your mental and physical health. I try to prioritize these regardless of how busy or unpredictable other areas of my life are. I look at this as the foundation around which everything is arranged.
2. Spend more time on fulfilling experiences, people, and activities, and spend less time on soul sucking ones.
Knowing what energizes you and what drains you AND intentionally making decisions from this awareness is crucial. Notice your energy levels at different times of the day, around various people, activities, experiences, topics, places, etc.
3. Ask yourself what matters to you in this season.
For example, if I notice a lack of enthusiasm for something I enjoyed doing, or if it feels like I'm forcing myself to pursue a goal I set a while back, I reevaluate whether it still has the same importance to me and if it doesn't, I give myself the option to take a break from it or spend less time on it. Our priorities will shift as we change and evolve.
4. Minimize reliance on coping strategies for immediate relief and satisfaction.
We all have our habitual ways of responding to distress, but coping strategies that are geared towards escaping our experience and quickly feeling better, often leave us feeling worse in the long term or they tend to create an additional problem. Instead, learn how to be with and tolerate distress and seek to find more grounding and creative ways of coping with it.
Just because things could be worse, doesn’t mean you need to wait for a crisis to change what’s no longer working.
Over time, parts we don’t like about our life and habits that are draining our energy become tolerable.
Instead of using our time to change what we don’t like, we use the time to learn how to tolerate, cope with, and manage them.
We comfort ourselves by saying “it’s not that bad” and “it could be worse.” And yes, things could always be worse, but why wait for a crisis to change something that’s not working now?
When we’re in a crisis mode, we don’t have the energy and emotional stamina to approach problems in a productive way.
So don’t wait until you have no choice but to change. Honor the part of you that wants more out of life now.
Working with a professional can be crucial because we can’t fully see ways in which we keep ourselves stuck and we can’t identify our own painful stories because we’re too attached to them.
I would love to help! Check out my psychotherapy and coaching pages, or book a session and experience the power of coaching!
One of the most frequent oppositions to journaling is "I don't know what to write" and "I'm not good at writing." Here is my answer to this.
First, you don't need to know what to write, you just need to begin anywhere and the writing will unfold and take you where it wants to take you. Journaling can be about writing down your thoughts and letting go of the clutter in your mind. It can be about intentionally bringing yourself into a positive mood, inspiring yourself, and talking yourself up. It can be about writing down your feelings, frustrations, and questions about big and small things in life. There is no right or wrong way when it comes to journaling.
Second, journaling is not for those who deem themselves good writers - it's for everyone! You absolutely do not need to be good at writing. No one is going to read this. This is just for you, and I often suggest for people to not even read it. You may just want to write it and forget it.
Here are a few journaling prompts for connecting to your desires.
It would wonderful if…
It’s time for me to let go of…
It’s time for me to embrace…
These prompts will help you journal your way into a positive mindset by shifting your awareness towards experiences that create internal states of peace, joy, creativity, and excitement.
The Importance of a Morning Routine
As soon as you wake up, you are starting to create a momentum. You start creating energy that will persist throughout your entire day.
If you’re not aware that you’re creating a momentum, it just means that you’re creating it by default.
It means you’re letting random thoughts and feelings to dictate your internal experience and your actions. You’re unconsciously reacting and when you’re doing that, you’re creating a negative momentum. And once it gets going it takes great amount of energy and emotional resource to interrupt it and change it.
Morning is the time when it’s the easiest to create on purpose instead of by default.
Does your morning routine feel calm and grounding or chaotic? Is it setting you up for a great day or for overwhelm?
Don’t overthink this. Don’t worry about having to do things like everyone else is suggesting. Think about how would you like to feel throughout the day and what would help you connect to that feeling as soon as you wake up.
You don’t need to change your whole routine if that feels overwhelming. Introduce small changes and build on them