I used to say to my clients that I understood that working full time and haveing a lot of other things to do can be overwhelming but in order to start feeling better, you have to take into consideration of your health. It's important to put time aside to plan meals and fit exercise and any other self-care regimen that you want to do in the day. I also used to say that I understand how difficult it is to do all this. And yes, I really did, but where I failed my clients is that I had been out of the workforce for so long that I kidded myself into thinking that I truly wholeheartedly understood, that was until now. I've had to take up a part-time job while I plot and plan and scheme the next direction of my business. I like the job. But even with working just 20 hours a week, I find that at the end of the day, I'm tired and struggling to even lift my hand to reach the doorknob of my house let alone make anything to eat. When I enter the door I'm greeted by two cranky, surly cats making demands for their treats that in their heads are already two hours late.
I don't have as much to deal with than others do. I don't have kids to wrangle and if I’m tired with the little that I do need to do and worry about I now have a new appreciation for those who do have kids, husbands, wives and anyone else vying for their time after working a hard day.
I’m not wrong in saying that it’s important to keep up your health while you are doing everything else that you need to do. So how do you make sure you are taken care of and have time to breathe in between carpools, sports pick up, dance recitals and taking the dog to the vet?
Here may be some solutions:
1) Hire help. It’s O.K. to ask for help. When you are swamped and you need a boost just to keep you going it’s o.k to hire someone. If your kids are older and can drive, ask them to pick up the slack when it comes to driving, shopping or even starting dinner prep can be a huge help.
2) One task at a time. You will run yourself into the ground if you do everything at once. Break it down. One thing I’ve started doing is putting an alarm on my phone for one hour. I challenge myself, how much can I get done in one hour.
3) Cook in bulk. It’s o.k. to make large batches of soup, lasagna, or any other item that is just as good when you reheat it. Please keep in mind that food doesn’t stay fresh for very long so if you do make large batches, make sure the food is consumed within three days. And hey, you’ve got plenty for lunch and dinner.
4) Remove distractions like the T.V. this has been a big one for me. I’ve quickly learned that I’ve gotten into the habit of coming home, making something quick and flopping on the couch. This is where I stay watching the latest t.v. show and before I know it, it’s time for bed and I have done nothing that I originally intended.
5) If you need to do things, how much of a priority is/are they? Do you HAVE to be somewhere? When do you HAVE to have a chore done? Can these things be placed in a more “when I have a free moment” list?
Life shouldn’t be a series of running from place to place. It should be something that every moment is savored and you find joy in everything that you do. I do get it. Now, I really do. But I just as equally get that finding balance is important too.