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My Work/Life Teeter-Totter

279682572_60f4a0447e_zI came home to a mountain of dishes tonight. Okay, a small hill.

I wasn’t shocked, because I left them there, saying, “One good thing about it still being cold is we don’t have to worry about bugs!”

The dishes were congregating in and around the sink not because I’m lazy, but because something else was more important the evening before. In this case, it was going to the gym and then, with what little time I had left, relaxing with my husband.

So, they sat until the next day until I got home from work because the house and family time was the priority then.

This is how my life is: an ever-present tension between things that are important to me. A clean house, a healthy body, connecting with my husband, positive attention to my daughter, bills that are paid, social outings that are planned, quiet time, work emails, watching funny shows, learning…these are all important. I can’t do them all at once. They are never ALL achieved at one time.

I’ve started to note that there is no real balance but more of a teeter-totter. One thing gets time and attention and then another priority surfaces.

My life right now requires shifting priorities among the most important things. There is no having it all- just weaving back and forth, knowing that what isn’t done one day can have it’s turn the next day or the next week.

It means tolerating a bit of mess and having a lot of flexibility. But most of all, it means being easy on myself and clear in my intentions.

I can accept Dish Hill on Wednesday because on Tuesday I got to go hang out with my gym buddies and do a workout. It doesn’t mean I’m lazy or shameful.

I’m negotiating a lot of stuff because I have a wonderful, full life.

I don’t know what works for you, but I encourage you to find it. Are you like me and just need to be more tolerant and accepting that not everything can happen each day? Can you let some stuff go for the sake of the most pressing priority?

How do you manage your time in order to enjoy a full life?

Photo by Hiroh Satoh (Creative Commons License)

POSTED: 10 Apr, 2014

TAGS: emotional wellness , perspectives , strategies , stress management , work/life balance

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