I’m calling BS on Balance.
Balance is so overrated. Especially for those moms out there with small kids. I feel like we all want, aim, strive for balance in our lives but this actually makes us feel worse. One of the first things people tell me they wantin their life – BALANCE.
I have spent the past year in an attempt to get some balance in my life. Everytime I seem to make progress, something changes or shifts in the schedule and its like starting back at square one. With 3 kids, living the expat life in Switzerland, with no outside help, things are bound to shift occasionally….no… shift always. When things get out of whack, I start stressing trying to get it all running smooth again.
First let me start by explaining what balance looks like to me. Don’t mean to bore you but I think more for my benefit. Making the time to do all of these things is what my ideal “balanced” day looks like:
- Time to write
- Daily Study time
- Gym time
- Eating healthy which requires meal planning and a food shop
- Kids home at lunch, Pinterest activities in the afternoon (HAHAHA- just kidding but quality family time in the afternoon)
- Daily Time to tidy the house
- Quiet time to talk to hubby for 10 minutes without being interrupted by one of the kids
All the hours of the day are devoted to spending time with family (whether I want to or not) that is just the way it is, right now. I am sure I can come up with more things to add to list but these are the main things.
Getting the balance right….
Every time I start to get into a routine of some sort that I am happy with, something unexpected happens and it all gets out of whack. The first thing to fall by the wayside are the things that I want to do for myself. So maybe I start out by skipping the gym, then I don’t make time to write, then I fall behind on school work; before I know it its been months since I have done either on a consistent basis.
If I don’t get to do the things that I would like to do (and I don’t really have outrageous requests) – who does it benefit?
- It leads to resentment towards everyone
- Not healthy at all
- You find yourself eating crappy maybe even falling into an emotional eating trap
- You don’t look after yourself wearing leggings/ponytail/no make up combo until one day you realise that you have been wearing the same outfit for two days which consists of joggy bottoms, pit stained t-shirts, orange socks (because they were the only clean ones) with sandals – SANDALS.
All of which can throw you into the pit of depression – especially after you catch a reflection of sad self. Luckily for me, I live in Europe where there is a plethora of inexpensive good wine.
When things were not working out as I wanted them to, I had to reevaluate what balance actually means to me. It means something different to everyone based on their current lifestyle. Right now, where I am in my life, balance means fitting in the things that I want to do (work out, study, practice, coaching, writing) as well as all the tasks that come with being a mother.
WHAT TO DO?
Let go of the idea of balance.
Life is going to throw you curve balls every day. EVERY.SINGLE.DAY All it takes is one threenager tantrum or a sick kid to throw the entire day off. If you let go of this preconcieved idea you have of balance and all your expectations that are attached to that idea, you can shift and adjust quickly to these unexpected changes without stressing or feeling like everything is getting out of whack.
Once I started to let go of the idea of balance – things started to fall into place. I started looking at it as finding a daily rhythm. Some days the rhythm will spot on and some days it will be off. That is OKAY. Since I starting thinking balance is overrated, and slowly let go of the idea of balance I am less stressed and I am more attentive as a mom. Whilst I may not be able to fit in everything that I want to do, I am still managing more than I did when I was still working under the balance banner. Funny that…..
What are your thoughts on balance?