What does it mean to find balance in your life? It seems as a culture we are obsessed with achievement and success in all areas of our lives. I didn’t realize how much I felt this pressure until I became a stay at home mom. I often questioned my purpose and if I was doing enough. After all wasn’t I just a stay at home mom?
There isn’t anything wrong with meeting goals and seeking self improvement. But sometimes when we obsess over our to-do list, we miss out on the joys of life. As a stay at home mom, I want to keep my house clean, cook delicious meals, work on my blog and spend time with my kids.
Recently, I’ve been struggling to find this balance and I wonder, is it really possible to do it all? It seems there are too many things on my to-do list. If I don’t get everything accomplished I start to feel stressed out. Can you relate?
Here is a short version of my daily to-do list (in no particular order):
- Feed my family 3 healthy meals (bonus if it’s vegan)
- Keep an organized house (no piles of laundry, toys, dirty dishes, etc.)
- Work out for at least 30 minutes daily
- Spend quality time with God by reading His word, listening to worship music and/or praying
- Spend quality time with my husband without interruption
- Impart valuable life lessons and play with my kids
- Work on my blog
I’ve come to realize I just can’t do it all. You can do most of it, but I’ve yet to meet anyone who can succeed in every area of life. We just don’t have enough time in the day!
So how do you find a balance and stop going crazy over everything you need to accomplish? My goal is to slow down and enjoy being a stay at home mom. Here are 5 practical ways I’ve learned to destress, find joy and balance in my life.
5 Ways to Find Balance In Your Life
- Prioritize: This is key. It is important to take time to sit down and write out what you want to accomplish. Brainstorm what is most important to you. Is it quality time with the kids? Keeping a clean house? Then you can prioritize. Every mom will have a different list so try not compare! If keeping a clean house isn’t your number one priority, that is okay. You need to decide what is important for you.
- Make a personal mission statement: I’ve found writing a mission statement for my life has helped me understand my priorities. Then in every situation I am in, I can go back to my mission statement and focus my energy on what is important to me. It gives my life purpose and reminds me I am more than a dishwasher! Have you written a mission statement?
- Write lists!: This seems so simple, but it really works. I’m always hesitant to write a daily to-do list because I think “What does it matter? I know what I need to do in my head.” As a stay at home mom, lists give me purpose and help me structure my day. I’ve found over the years we do best when there is structure. I’ve also realized when you stay home with two young kids, structure is something you need to build yourself. Start building structure by writing short and manageable to-do lists. Even if it is a simple thing like do 1 load of laundry, it feels so good to check it off at the end of the day!
- Let go of the guilt: In today’s world there is so much comparison. I believe a lot of it is due to social media. We think we are somehow “failing” if our house isn’t as spotless as the house we see on Pinterest or Instagram. I’ve also occasionally felt guilty for letting my daughter watch an hour of TV a day. Now I don’t think kids should sit in front of the TV all day, but seriously an hour, I shouldn’t feel guilty over this. Where does this guilt come from? I think a lot of it comes from comparison and the pressure to succeed in every aspect of life! We need to just let the guilt go and remember we are doing the best we can.
- Take control of your thoughts: As a school psychologist I loved learning about Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Essentially this theory believes your emotions, thoughts and behaviors all influence one another. One way to change your emotions is to take control of your thought life. What are you thinking about on a daily basis? Are you harping on the negative or rejoicing in the positive? I know it is easier said than done, but the first step to changing your thought life is recognizing where you are right now. Take 5 minutes to be intentional and meditate on excellent and praiseworthy things!
How do you find balance in your life? I’d love to hear you suggestions in the comments below!