Slowing down: 3 easy ways to find balance
You’re not alone if you have a hard time finding balance. Sometimes the days just fly by and you have no idea what you did one day or even one week ago. Often we’re too busy with emails or maintaining the never-ending scroll of social media that we’re left feeling like we aren’t really present. We’re so busy catching up with everyone else’s lives that we forget to tend to our own.
We all can be guilty of this. Recently, I was at home with my husband and kids making breakfast. I was there, but I wasn’t there. I was looking at my phone, thinking about my day, and planning music for an upcoming class. My husband had to ask me the same question several times. What I thought was being really efficient and productive, I realized was actually leaving me with less, keeping me disconnected. It wasn’t even 8AM and I was already preoccupied. Does this sound familiar?
So many of us are in the “go means go” club, from the second we wake up. We get on our computer, check our phones, and react to whatever the world throws at us. Our minds are spinning and our stress rises before we even get out of bed or out the door. It’s not easy to slow down and be present. But it’s incredibly important. If you actually practice it, just as you practice anything else, you can do it.
Here are some strategies I’ve learned for tackling work/life balance—and feeling better in the long haul. They’ve allowed me to go through my days a little more mindfully and with more purpose and presence.
Leave your phone out of the bedroom. I don’t bring my phone into the bedroom and use an alarm clock instead to wake up. I end up not looking at it when I wake up, or until I leave the house, most days.
Do a simple 1-2 minute breathing, stretching or mindfulness technique. You can do this in the morning before getting out of bed and during the day. I like to just lie in bed for just a few short moments, stretching and being in my body before I jump up. I take this practice to my classes and encourage everyone to set an intention or acknowledge something they’re grateful for. I find that just taking a moment to notice your body and your breath can settle you down and be very grounding.
Schedule your downtime. Just as you schedule your work meetings, workout schedule, and appointments, it’s important to schedule time for you to relax. I set aside downtime to just relax or reinvigorate and allow myself the time I need to recharge. If you feel most relaxed at yoga class, make sure to get it on your calendar a couple times a week and don’t compromise that time for work or other commitments. If you get energy from relationships, then make a date with friends to get together for a good laugh. It’s important to listen to yourself, know what you need to relax, and make a commitment to slowing down. The more you do, the more balanced and present you’ll become.