Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Strivinvg for Work-Life Balance

I used to think that balance was something one could attain. Yet, I am learning that my life is either moving toward or away from balance. "Balance is a fluid state, always in motion, because life itself is dynamic" (Co-Active Coaching, p. 8). Balance like energy comes and goes. The good news is we can get better at predicting what helps us move toward more balanced living.

Adults feel pulled in many directions. The pull comes from wanting our children to learn, succeed, and be entertained. It also comes from wanting to be the best at our jobs as well as having fulfilling family roles, friendships, and community contributions. What is really realistic to accomplish in a lifetime? in a day?

Although there is no formula for always being in balance between work and family, I do think we can look for markers to remind us that we are getting out of balance. For instance, maybe it's thinking negatively about a spouse or developing a tension headache. What are your markers that you are out of balance?

Being self employed and mother of two young children is hard yet rewarding work. One thing that helps me move toward balance is having set work hours. Recognizing when work ends and life/family begins is important for me to define. I can easily become engrossed in my work. Like my kids, I need routines and structures to help me set boundaries.

Lastly, learning that saying yes to something means saying no to something else. Remembering that I can't do it all, and my kids don't have to be exposed to every opportunity. And, slowing down to experience quiet, rest, and relaxation are necessary nutrients in my desire to move toward more balanced living. What works for you?

(c) Copyrite 2009, Marci Payne, MA, LPC
May not be duplicated or reprinted without permission

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