How can you get beyond the demands of each day to find balance in your life? Sure we are all busy but in all that business how do you avoid overwhelm and strike that beautiful place where life is good in every area?
This post is a reminder you and I how to find and keep balance in our lives as we juggle all the busy demands of each day with those things that are essential and important. I’ve drawn on remarks I heard at a conference this weekend. It is sound and timely advice for each of us.
Know Where You Will Land!
To find balance you and I need to determine what we really want. We need to decide what it is that is really important. Without know where we are going we may end up like this fish. The results can be disastrous.
If you are not careful you’ll end up like the salmon who finds himself mid-air wishing he can change directions. Sometimes lack of planning makes for rough landings.
So how do we keep our eye on the prize and withstand the clamor of yelling voices? Before you jump you need to know where you will land. This means planning. Knowing where you are going allows you to keep focus on the important while the world around you is screaming about the intently interesting. This is how you stay tough in the moment.
To help your planning for balance it is suggested we answer a few simple questions honestly. These questions help us improve our situation.
1.1 What Are My Highest Priorities?
There will always be too much to do. Only as we follow our heart and stay true to who we are will we begin to pick the most important activities. So what is it you want out of life? What is it you were meant to do while breath is still in you? Are there obligations, duties that you need to perform?
Once you get to the actions that matter most can you start to make certain the selection of important and meaningful activities are equally distributed. Balanced across the areas of your life. So what is it that is important? Really meaningful?
If you are not sure got to a few funerals and see what they talk about.
1.2 How Am I using My Discretionary Time?
Outside of the parts of life that are scheduled or filled with obligations, you are in control. You have full control and choice. This question really is two in on.
First,What are you now doing with the time you have? Is it a hobby? Community Service? Time with family/friends?
Second, What will you do with the time you have you call your own? Are you planning to use this time or are you going off with no plan? The future is yours to use as you will. The next two questions point you in the way of balance.
1.3 Am I Applying My Discretionary time to what matters most?
This is really the choice. You start to see there are things you can do that will forward the important parts of your life with your discretionary time.
Planning on putting the activities that matter most into some of your “free” time can work wonders for you. You can indeed stretch into the essential activities. You can put so many small but important activities into your time. Small steps taken one by one can help you reach your goal over time.
1.4 If I know I should be using my time for other activities Fix It!
Mistakes happen. Priorities change. What is important now may not be what you thought was important a few weeks ago. Embrace the growth patterns and give yourself permission to get over the decisions of the past. For me, each week I forgive myself for my mistakes. I buckle down and jump into the next week of “best” choices. You can grow too. Jump on to your best choices and forgive the mistakes of the past.
Tomorrow is a better day! Take aim. Know where you want to land and …. jump!
A Few Short Term Goals
There are some simple formulas to help you implement your plans. Putting together a few simple goals that are not too hard and not too easy can help you do what you plan. Highest, important key performance activities can help you and I make the most of our time.
Saying no to the activities that distract you from these goals is easy. Keeping focus on the few, simple goals keeps you making progress. You can do more than you thought when you are giving that attention to what matters. Simple is an overstatement. Life still has it’s challenges. Everything isn’t always easy. Focus on what you need. Simple goals can help you.
Teach Each Other
With the important tasks in the goals and the goals aligned with your highest priorities you’d think life is good. It can be but balance is not always obtained in this way. This is here teaching each other the principles involved in reaching goals and dreams comes into play.
Teaching and learning from each other gives us the feedback we need to see if balance is in place. Reminding each other of the principles of individual balance helps to keep our goals in line with what we need now. When we teach each other about physical, mental, social and spiritual needs we nudge each other toward the balance we seek.
Pointing out our strengths and weaknesses can help some times. Helping each other see our performance successes and gaps also keeps us progressing. Teaching each other the next “best” steps for us is helpful for each of us.
Budget – Spending Plan
Keeping the finances in check is also one of the keys to balance. If we go off and devote too much of our financial resources in any one area we are headed toward imbalance. Again busy is fun but is it meaningful? Using our financial resources in controlled ways adds more control into the other areas of our lives.
Budget your money and your time budget will also be easier to stay with. Something about being in control and managing your affairs that gives you added strength to fulfill your desire for balance among business.
Rest, Exercise and Relaxation
All this talk of goals and using every spare moment may get you thinking you need to be active every instant. This is actually unproductive. You are in need of recreation and rest just as much as you are in need of action.
Physical exercise and being in shape actually helps you sleep deeper and rest more completely. Balanced exercise and rest between other “high” value activities will allow you to deliver on your own personal productivity.
Need to get a lot done? Take a break. Rest, relax and exercise. Productivity will skyrocket!
Close to Family and Friends
Productive balance often requires leaving the task list alone. Listening to family, friends and close associates can be very productive. More over it fills social and emotional needs that are often overlooked during time of high energy to accomplish exacting goals.
You ultimately need that urgency and attention. You and I need the activity to get the goal done. Especially when it is aligned with our high and noble priorities. Balance means keeping the most important and meaningful connections of your life alive and well too.
Balance: Beyond Busy and Overwhelm
Balanced business is really possible. You and I deserve the very best as we make the most of our lives. Staying true to the high priority, important aspects of our lives rewards us with satisfaction and lives well lived.
We will likely never have time to do all we feel we need to do. We can staying on top of the important, high priorities that will allow us to avoid overwhelm and keep balance. Applying the simple principles of teaching each other, staying on a spending plan, resting and relaxing and staying close with family, friends and associates will help.
Balance in our busy lives will keep us working on the important, priority tasks all without overwhelm. You can even achieve excellent along the way!
Ideas and concepts presented at today’s conference used information in the following talks from 1987 and 2001 General Conferences of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints