Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the amount of tasks calling you at the start of every day? Like even making a dent is monumentally daunting? Do you throw your hands up, immobilized? Want some simple habits to keep up without running ragged?
I’ve been there. Uttering to myself, “There is not enough time, there is not enough time…” as I spill my tea all over my work clothes as I am walking out the door. I was flustered and frustrated and this made it all worse. Who has time for that?
Inevitably when I got into time-deficit mentality, I’d feel even powerless. Can you relate?
Thankfully, the radiant Betsy Henry from Zen Mama is here today to give six easy and simple habits that can help us stop stressing and start being. Becky is both a go-getter and a calm instigator. When she realized her life was too hectic, she stopped and listened to her heart, beginning a shift that so many of us long for in our life–being more Zen. Without further ado, here she is…
Six Easy and Simple Habits To Keep Your Life In Balance
By Betsy Henry
When I’m not being a Zen Mama, I’m a preschool teacher. I love my job. Usually I have two classes but for one year I am working full time and have 56, 3-5 years at various times during the week. It’s such a rewarding job. I look forward every year to the new crop of faces, familiar and new. I learn so much from them. The kids keep me laughing and happy as we learn, sing and play throughout the school year.
A teacher can be pretty exhausted every afternoon after this energy. Since I knew how busy I’d be this year, I asked myself this question: “How can I create a balanced life?”
What does being balanced mean to me? It means not rushing, feeling grounded, calm and peaceful, and best of all, excited for my day and for just being alive. It’s feeling awake, mindful, receptive and wise. We all have glimpses of balance in life but not usually on a daily basis. What if you could have this feeling nearly everyday?
We all have the days that don’t go that smoothly. You’ve overslept, stuff down some breakfast, put your coffee in a go-cup and barely make it to work on time. The whole day is often a mess after a start like that. Maybe having a day like this is part of the balance, too. You can appreciate the better days when you have one that’s not quite right.
6 Must Daily Habits
Here are 6 simple and easy habits I try to do everyday to keep my life in balance.
1. Have a positive attitude. Laugh and smile as much as possible.
2. Breathe. Andrew Weil has a great breathing technique called 4-7-8 that I got to learn from him in person. It helps me to relax and even go back to sleep in the middle of the night. (Video of this technique is at the bottom!)
3. Get up early in the morning. This way, I never feel rushed on my way to work. The un-rushed feeling lasts all day.
4. Have a relaxing meal at night. I love to eat dinner at night with my family. I know this can’t happen every night. Tonight I’m eating alone and enjoying my meal slowly and getting inspiration to write this post.
5. Exercise. A walk or a bike ride is usually possible as part of my everyday exercise.
6. I have a good mix of work, play and learning throughout my day.
I know that life takes over sometimes. Work, kid’s sporting events, an evening out, family obligations, stress over any amount of things can seep into your day. And sometimes you need to experience some sorrow to completely understand and know the joy in life. So if you find yourself getting too busy, try these simple tips. You’ll keep balance in your day to day life, be amazed and how much easier everything else will be.
Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony. “~Thomas Merton
You can do them, too!
Wow! Betsy is awesome!
She has her priorities straight! And she is also flexible. There is little negotiation in the important things, keeping her “balanced.” Yet, she has no expectations for her time, so she’ll experience less frustration. Brilliant!
I can relate! It was only once I understood this balance, my relationship with time changed.
I began to say: “There is more than enough time for everything I want to do.”
I acknowledged the way I filled my time was my choice. Knowing it was my prerogative how I spent my minutes empowered me. I felt less of a victim of not having enough time. I was no longer impotent against the tide of the clock.
Also, I worried less about getting everything done. Letting go of worry does not mean laziness and unproductivity. I can personally vouch for increased productivity and an happier disposition! Whatever gets done, gets done, and it is NEVER everything. So why stress?
Worrying takes tons of effort and energy! If we dread a task for a few hours, or a few days, before getting started on it, it’s like doing it many times instead of just once. If we enjoy what we had to do, make tedious tasks fun or interesting, we would be much less exhausted when we are done. Then we would have energy to add some fun things in!
I understood my limits and respected them. To quote Betsy, “You can do it, too!”
Wouldn’t that be great? How do you take care of yourself when things get hairy?