Life is all about setting boundaries to create balance. It is also about recognising when we need to set those boundaries, and when we are out of balance. For me, I would love to paint at every spare moment that I have (around looking after our 3 little ones), but I know that some of my time needs to be spent managing the house and other things. I also know that, whilst I love my painting time, if I spend too much time painting and not enough of my time writing and in quiet reflection then things can also get on top of me. With so many moving parts, it is a constant work in progress to get things in balance.
Balance and boundaries are especially important when we are parents and have so many demands on us. I know that in a busy house with 3 little ones, it can be really hard to have time to myself, or just some quiet time, and so it is up to me to set boundaries to create that quiet time. Creating boundaries with our children also encourages them to learn patience, understanding and gratitude (and is definitely a work in progress). We also need to set boundaries with our families and friends, we need to set boundaries with our work and other commitments, and we need to set boundaries with our partners.
Setting these boundaries helps us to create balance. For example, it helps with creating a balance between time with the family, time with our partners, and time with ourselves. Whilst it can be incredibly hard to achieve, and some days might be easier than others, what can make it easier is knowing what quality time looks like with our families, partners, and ourselves. By knowing what quality time looks like, we can then make better decisions around how we spend our time, and can gain greater satisfaction from using that time to better serve us. Communicating with our partners and kids on the boundaries we want to create is also key.
We also need to take the pressure off ourselves. We don’t have to do everything, and we don’t have to achieve it all alone. It is okay to ask for help when we need it. Sometimes we might need to take a break from something to make room or give extra attention to something else. When we feel we are spiralling and overwhelmed, the best solution is often to take a break and regroup. Whilst we might think we are ‘wasting time’ when we stop, this is not the case for when we take breaks, we are coming back with greater energy, greater focus and clarity, and often greater motivation.
If you’re recognising that you’re out of balance, speak up and ask for the help you need to create the space for you to restore balance, and be gentle with yourself.