Posted: Tue 26th Jul 2022
Do you feel like you’re treading water with not enough time to enjoy the fruits of your labour? Let me assure you, this is all too common, but it isn’t right.
It could be that you are spending too much time consumed by your workload, or you’re feeling the burden of unrealistic expectations being placed on you by others. It may be that you are letting your ‘To Do’ list govern your every waking moment, leaving you feeling fretful when you aren’t under pressure.
These issues seem to be a recurring theme with many people I talk to. The context may not be the same but the underlying issues are. We can all feel like this from time to time but we must recognise when we need to make changes.
Everything in life must have balance but how is balance defined? In life, balance is when you feel content and fulfilled in all areas: health, wealth, family, romance, work, physical environment, recreation, and friends.
When we give our focus to each area of life equally, we then find that we feel more at peace with ourselves and where we are on our journey.
This is a key sign that you need to readdress where your energy is being spent.
Often, there are other reasons why we keep ourselves busy.
Sometimes, we use the excuse of being ‘busy’ to forget about other things that might be bothering us in life or we might feel the expectations placed on us are causing us to feel this discontent.
The other argument could be that the adrenaline of stress is keeping us addicted to the motion of the proverbial hamster wheel.
These things are all within our control to change and we are the only ones that are creating this way of life.
In essence, the workload isn’t keeping us on a knife edge, our mindset is.
Can you identify yourself with any of these personality traits?
You constantly ‘people please’ and struggle to say ‘no' because you believe your self-worth is dependent on helping others.
Wearing the ‘Busy Badge’ to keep a sense of pride and purpose and using it as an excuse to cancel or get out of plans as ‘you’ time isn’t your priority.
Keeping up the appearance of being in control and working all of the hours because you fear inadequacy. Delegation is a struggle!
The chances are, if you’re feeling under pressure, one or more of these titles will align with how you’re feeling. Can you see how your beliefs and views could have brought you to live this way?
‘But WHAT can I do about it!?’ I hear you cry. How can you feel less stressed?
Well, my first piece of advice is to stop!
Get off the hamster wheel, stop pedalling and find some headspace. If you can, get yourself away from the situation and take some time for yourself!
Spend some time thinking about what life balance means to you.
What would you love to spend more of your time on?
What areas of your life do you feel you have neglected?
Are there any hobbies that you would like to rediscover or pastimes that have been long forgotten in the mire of overwork?
Taking some time out will help you gain a better sense of clarity as to what you would ideally like to achieve. Only when you know what your goal is can you go about setting the foundations to help you reach your ideal balanced lifestyle.
Life balance will look different for everybody; it all depends on what we personally hold important. The idea of balance will be a totally different ball game for a new mother who needs time to relax and rediscover herself to someone who is just out of uni, looking to build a career and still wanting to enjoy a full social life.
No matter what situation you are in, there will most likely be an opportunity to delegate tasks to others.
If you live with family, have a think about who can pick up some of the chores to free up some time to dedicate to the things you want to do instead of the tasks that drain you.
If you are running a business, can you onboard some freelance help or invest in an employee who can help grow your business? Keeping you mentally on track is more likely to bring success.
Have you got friends who could help with running some errands for you? Taking some of the pressure off of your shoulders will help centre you and rediscover time to refocus on the important tasks, thus reducing overwork and overwhelm.
Community is an essential part of being a human; living in a pack. Look at asking for help as a strength of character, not a weakness. Most of the time, people feel more valued when helping others.
Creating boundaries and making space for ‘downtime’ is also essential for an effective work-life balance.
Creating a routine that you stick with will take away some of the daily, unimportant decision makings. Keep a schedule and refer to it at least once a day. Make sure you take enough time out and get enough rest. Life balance should be about spending as much time resting and enjoying life as working.
Organising your time in advance will ease the burden but spontaneity in our personal lives can keep a level of excitement and adventure. The key to beating the overwhelm is to make sure we are making time for fun and giving ourselves the opportunity to just ‘be’.
If it feels like a mountain that climbing alone is too much, this is the time when a coaching session is a sensible step to finding harmony in your life.
By chatting it through, we can find the real root of the cause and put some actionable steps in place to alleviate pressure and help you gain clarity and the time to focus on your goals.