Are you making the effort to find your balance in this world?
Is it just me or does the world seem to be getting crazier all the time? I know I sound like the “GET OFF THE LAWN!” crowd here, but I’m not quite sure we’re evolving into better people in a better place. We’ve created busyness and chaos in the name of progress, but I wonder if we’ve really progressed at all. I know I felt that way about myself.
A few months ago I was seriously burned out. My job is super-duper (yes, that’s a word) stressful and there just never seemed to be a time to rest. So I decided one Sunday to stay home and do nothing … and do nothing I did. I watched seven episodes … SEVEN EPISODES! of Mistresses only getting up from the comfy chair in the lounge for food and bathroom breaks.
I was thinking that just watching mindless TV would give me the break I needed for my brain and body.
I was wrong.
At the end of the day, I felt worse than when I started. It seemed like I was actually more tired PLUS I got absolutely nothing done around the house. That approach obviously wasn’t the solution I needed.
Plus after listening to a mental health podcast that talked about how we’re all conditioned to respond to notifications on our phones and how constantly being available is actually contributing to depression and anxiety, I decided to make a few changes.
This past weekend, I moved my most often viewed phone icons to another page so they’d be harder to access and I turned off notifications. Then all weekend I left my phone in a room that I wasn’t in … and guess what … THE WORLD DID NOT END! Yes, at first it was a little strange, almost like I was missing a vital body organ, but as the first day progressed and I stayed productive, I missed it less and less.
I was mindful about everything I was doing and didn’t even check my phone in between tasks. If there’d been an actual emergency then I would have heard it ringing wherever I was in the house, but I knew post likes, new e-mails, and updates were not emergencies.
I made a list that mixed getting stuff done and resting. Here’s what I accomplished on Sunday by being mindful and not screenful (yes, I just made up that word).
- got up early (like usual) and read several things
- wrote a chapter in my novel
- went to church
- ate a healthy lunch
- took a nap
- did the dogs’ nails
- watched the shows I love to watch
- wrote a few chapters in my self-help book
- did some training
- felt proud of myself
That was the biggest thing. At the end of the day, I felt soooooooooooo proud of myself for not being a slug all day nor a prisoner of my phone. I didn’t feel guilt or regret at all. It was such a good feeling. I highly recommend it.
I know my weekends aren’t always going to be that way and there will be some days when my balance between being productive and resting is a little different, especially if I’m sick or something like that, but I also know I could get used to the feeling of being proud of myself. I helped my future self and I know she appreciates it.
P.S. You may have noticed the letters written on each day of my planner in the photo for this post. When I first decided to kick start 2020 as my year of Effort, I decided to do certain things every day and so far I’ve done really well at it.
The letters are written in my planner for each day and I circle them as I do each thing.
E = Exercise (even if it’s just for 5 minutes)
T = Track what I eat (so I’m more mindful about what I eat and why)
W = Write something (a blog post, a chapter in my novel, a course outline, etc.)
M = this one has a slash through it to symbolize NOT Multitasking
G = take small daily steps towards my Goals
P = Pray daily (I added this one a few weeks ago)
It’s definitely part of finding MY balance. If I do these things each day (or most days) I notice that my mood improves and my attitude is better.
What simple things can you do each day to help you make the effort to find your balance?
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