Balance and Back to School

Happy first day after the unofficial end of summer, friends. I’ll be ‘professionally developing’ as some of you read this today. My summer is officially over. (Not complaining. Just grateful.)

      

Here’s an article my good friend Diane Lang dropped in my inbox yesterday. Definitely worth sharing. She’s also listed quite a few live workshops: one in NYC and the rest in NJ–check them out if you’re in the area. Many are free! 

So Diane says:

When September rolls around, we start thinking of Back-to-School for our kids and dealing with work-life balance. This is a time of excitement along with new challenges and opportunities. I know I’m already feeling the stress of work-life balance. My biggest question is: will I make it home to get my daughter off the bus without sacrificing my time at work? You might have the same question or something similar that deals with the struggles of work-life balance. So, for this month I thought it was important to give some tips on work-life balance.  Please feel free to e-mail me back with your tips to share with everyone.

  1. We feel the pressure from both work and home but if you don’t like your job, you will feel it more often. If you have a career instead of a job, you will feel happier going to your office. You will have “Flow” at work. Time will pass quicker and you will enjoy your day if you’re doing what you love. Most of us spend at least 60 hours a week working (this includes e-mails, calls and texts even after work) add your commute and you realize how much time you really spend at work. If you’re doing something you don’t enjoy, you will feel it right away. Follow your passions and feel more balanced.
  2. Home time – when your home, spend some real time with your family. This means set some time aside for family time without taking calls/texts from work.
  3. Live in the here and now – people feel stressed when they focus on the past even though it’s gone and they worry about the future that isn’t here yet. Use your past to learn from and plan for your future but live in the here and now. Live in the moment!
  4. Set a long term goal (1 -5 years). Set up short term goals to reach that long term goal. Make both goals realistic. The key word is “Realistic”. If your goals aren’t realistic, you will feel overwhelmed and will procrastinate. If they are realistic, you will accomplish them and with each accomplishment you will feel a sense of positive reinforcement which will motivate you to move forward and reach your long term goals.
  5. NO- Learn to say no. Practice makes it easier. I wish there was another way around it but the truth is the more you say no, the easier it will get. I know a lot of people have a hard time saying no due to guilt or fear of hurting someone’s feelings but the truth is when you say YES but mean NO, you only hurt yourself. You becomes stressed and then angry at yourself. Learn to set boundaries by saying NO!

*Join Ingrid Prueher and Diane Lang for a Meet & Greet at Metro Mini’s in NYC: September 15 at 12:30. Ingrid and Diane will be answering Parenting questions and discussing their up coming Parenting workshop series at Metro Minis. The event is free – please register at 212-313-9600. 

Metro Minis *821 Park avenue *New York, NY

*Free Open House at Mystical World on Saturday, September 17 at 2pm

Come meet Diane and many other great healers.

Please register at 201-896-3999 * Mystical World, Lyndhurst, NJ

Ease your stress workshop – Monday, September 19 at 7pm

Learn tips/tools to relieve stress and feel more balanced.

Parsippany Adult school, Parsippany, NJ * Please register at 973-263-7180 ext 4342

What Kind of Smart are You?  Workshop – Thursday, September 22 at 7pm

Join me, take a personality test and find of your top strengths and how to use those strengths both at work and school. *Parsippany Adult school, Parsippany, NJ

Register at 973-263-7180 ext 4342

Free Workshop –Letting go of anger – Saturday, September 24 at 12pm – Suffern Public Library at 210 Lafayette Avenue, Suffern, Rockland County, NY. Please register at 845-357-1237

Happiness – Living an optimistic Lifestyle – Learn to live your best life!

Monday, September 26 at 7pm *Westfield Adult school, Westfield, NJ

Register at 908-232-4050

Positive Parent – Tuesday, September 27 at 7pm

Union County College, NJ

Register at 908-709-7601

For more information please visit Diane’s website at  or e-mail Diane at Lifeline36@aol.com.

So how do you create balance between work, school and home? Does your job or career bring you peace? How do you decompress to help decrease stress? All answers welcome. You never know who’ll benefit from what YOU have to say!

Looking ahead to Thursday: meet my good friend M. Kate Quinn. She’ll be discussing her road to publication and where she’s headed now that she’s ‘arrived.’ 

Until then TTFN,

Joanna

Wellness Week–Part 2

Diane Lang is back (I’ve missed her) and today she’s talking about striking a balance between work and life!  (Sorry about the formatting folks. Either I’m lame or up against something I don’t know how to control–so I let it go. No stress here! ;))

              

Creating a work-life balance

Career Vs. Job- do what you love. Imagine you have a job where you work as least 40 hours a week then add an hour commute each way, that’s a lot of time to spend doing something you don’t like. If you’re a parent then you have 2 jobs. Parenting is 24-hours, 7 days a week, no holidays or vacation time job. So, you better like your job outside of the home or it will make a very stressful, unbalanced and unhappy life. 
The happiest/balanced people will tell you they have a Career. They  enjoy going to work because it’s their passion.

The first step you need to take to create a balanced life is find out your passions/strengths. Take a personality test if you need to and ask yourself some questions.
1. When you were a child what did you love to do?
2. If money wasn’t an option what would you love to do?
3. What causes flow? Flow is when time stands still, when your so involved in your activity that you don’t even notice what is going on around you?

 Personal/Professional growth – to remain balanced we need a mix of both professional and personal development. The happiest people are always growing and learning in both areas of their lives. If we stop growing both professionally and personally we becomes stale and stagnate which can lead to depression..

 Are your basic needs met? You won’t find any balance if your not taking care of yourself. This involves taking care of your basics such as: sleep, eating healthy, exercise, etc. 
The other part is self- care – we usually feel unbalanced because we give a 100% to our work and then a 100% at home to our family but what about ourselves. 
For me self-care is a necessity, I schedule in “Me” time. I schedule in daily activities that will be two fold. I will be putting myself first and also doing things that cause happiness.
This includes: Gratitude checks ( morning and night), exercise, reading, etc. 
Write a list of activities that you love to do that involve your strengths/passions. Then in your daily calendar schedule yourself in. What keeps me motivated to add self-care is my child. A positive parenting tip – kids are visual learners. Telling my daughter she needs to take care of herself is one thing but showing her is even better. When my daughter see’s me exercising, reading a book, going out with friends, etc. I’m showing her respect for one self and how to be happy.

 Visualize what your balanced life would look like? I have clients come to me and say that their lives are unbalanced. When I say what would make your life better and more balanced, they aren’t sure. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the feelings of being overwhelmed, stressed out and tired that we forget to focus on what we want. What kind of life do you want? Do you need more vacation time? Time with your family? A different job? You can’t make changes till you know what they are.

 Cont rol – most of us spend a lot of time on what we CAN’T control and all that does is take up a lot time and negative energy. We can’t control anyone but ourselves. Write a list of everything you can and can’t control. The list with everything you CAN’T control, rip up. If you can’t control it, let it go. Take the list of everything you can control and ask yourself this question: What can I do about it now? What changes can I make? 

A lot of times we feel unbalanced but really we aren’t happy in our lives. So, take some time to be honest with yourself. What are you feeling? I have seen clients pre-occupy themselves with a lot of “Stuff” that they felt unbalanced and overwhelmed but after a lot of  thinking they realized they were filled up with “filled” activities. They would keep busy but it wasn’t anything important. They were avoiding their real feelings.

 Realistic – be realistic I haven’t meet anyone who has a perfectly balanced, happy life. We will have bad days, days we are rushing and feel stressed out. When this happen remember, it’s only TEMPORARY. We won’t feel this forever. Odds are you will be over in a few hours. It’s ok to feel stressed out sometimes. There is also good stress. Good stress motivates you to move forward and be the best you can be. So, don’t always be turned off by stress.

Check out Diane’s most recent interview here!

For more information visit Diane’s website: www.dlcounseling.com or e-mail her at Lifeline36@aol.com

Thanks, Diane! Always happy to have you. As always,  I’m grateful to all of you who stopped in. Here’s hoping to a great weekend–and a Super Bowl Sunday that goes your way!

TTFN,

Joanna