How to balance your life without going insane
I've been thinking a lot about this topic lately, mostly because it's something I've been dealing with in my life lately: the topic of balance.
Side note: before we get into this, it's important for me to note that I am not an expert in this...mostly, I spend my time lately attempting to handle my own crap and if any of the tips I use help you in any way, well...then, that works for me.
I work two jobs that are both, luckily, in my personal career field. I do this since living in Fort Collins (as a lot of you know) is an incredibly expensive endeavor, especially if you're like me, and want to live alone.
I love both jobs-- I get to work in the beer industry and I get to be on the radio, both things I love to do-- but sometimes, yeah, it gets a little crazy.
There are a few things that I remember that keep me on track, and I thought I'd outline them here for anyone dealing with similar stresses-- school + job, job + job, job + job + family + social life....we've all got it goin' on.
Here are the best ways to keep yourself sane.
1. Make lists
I am a visual person, and i have to say, this is one of the most effective things I've found lately that helps me accomplish my goals. Seeing my tasks laid out in front of me, either on a sheet of paper or using an app like Wunderlist, helps me prioritize and know what I need to get done first. Another thing to remember about this-- add on self-care lists that you want to accomplish; things like watching a movie after work or doing a face mask. Making sure that you're prioritizing ways to take care of yourself and your well-being is just as important as work and school tasks.
2. Buy a planner
This kind of goes along with #1, but in a different way. A planner can help you keep all of your days in check in an even more visual way than a list can, by laying it all out in front of you day by day. Plan out every day as much as you can, and don't be afraid to deviate-- for example, put a 'home-cooked meal' on the schedule for Thursday and don't be afraid to switch it up for takeout if you find your week is piling up too much. Side note: can you tell I'm thinking about takeout right now?
3. Schedule out days to do nothing
When you've got a jam-packed schedule, scheduling time to do nothing is just as important as scheduling time to do something. I know that it's easy to feel guilty when you're lying on the couch all day as opposed to getting things done, but with a busy schedule sometimes blocking out time for sitting on the couch watching movies is just as important as adding another shift to your day.
4. Eat healthy!
Yeah, this is one that I'm still working on. When things pile up, it's so easy to...well, order takeout. It's important to know that that needs to be a 'sometimes' thing, though-- when you're filling your body with healthier foods, vegetables, and other high-protein items, you'll feel more energized to tackle the tasks of the day.
5. Find an outlet.
Everyone needs an outlet when stress builds up. Mine? Roller skating. Knowing that every Wednesday my afternoons are blocked out for a trip to the rink with my friends helps me deal with the craziness of a busy week. It's also physical activity, which is good for stress that feels like it's slowly building throughout the day. Choose something physical or creative as your outlet, something that will let you express yourself: running, painting, cooking, or, yes-- skating.
Feel free to share your stress stories with me-- I'd love to hear the best ways you find you deal with your busy schedules in the comments.