Balancing When There Is No Balance

It’s been weeks since I have written a blog entry.  Aside from the holidays, life quickly got out of balance with work demands that blew up any chance of free time, much less an opportunity to sit in front of my computer with a clear and creative mind to write.

It’s happened before. We all get times where balance feels impossible, because there is nothing to balance when you are working all the time and spending whatever time is left caring for your family. If you are anything like me, you find yourself fighting it, feeling defeated that there is no time for me or the things I cherish the most.  That’s where we get stuck and I got stuck in December, until I realized one thing.  Maybe when there is no balance, I need to look for balance more than ever.

I need to recalibrate what balance looks like in the crazy times and accept that for a temporary period of time, less will have to be more and I will have to appreciate the small amounts of time that I can make for myself.  I need to reach out to get help and support because I can’t do it alone.  I need to decide what I can do and have during this temporary time until things settle down.

So, I did just that.  I moved into acceptance and put together a plan. I mapped out the coming weeks on a calendar so my husband and mother in law (who cares for our kids) knew realistically what my schedule was going to look like.  I settled on one small plan a day with my kids over the holiday break, as that was all that I could swing, and I tried to make it good and be present. Despite my guilt, I needed workout time more than ever to manage my stress and detune, so I went to the gym.  I took my dear friend’s advice and scheduled a hair appointment instead of canceling any time for me.  I put some commitments and hobbies on hold until I could get back on my feet.  It wasn’t easy, but it was necessary.

As my friend Cathy Adams, parenting coach, author and therapist says, this is self care. It’s what we tend to give up first when things get busy, but it’s what we need the most to get through the busiest of times. We deserve to be cared for and we have to care for ourselves.  For working women, self care is a key part of “working the work life balance”.

I know that I am not alone in this journey.  Sometimes, managing balance in the busiest of times is part of the work gig for all of us, but there is a solution and a plan out there that only we can put together for ourselves to get us through.   Instead of blowing up balance, balance more and don’t forget about you.  After all, you are worth it.

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