Finding balance – this is a topic that I have to continually revisit in my life. I tend to get single focused and do well in one area of my life but at the expense of another area.

To aim for balance recognises that I have many responsibilities, many different ‘hats’ to work on at the same time. I believe for us to be managing our family well we need to find a balance between all the aspects of our life; my personal life, my family life, my social life, my work life, my community life etc. Here are some of the things that have helped me, or some of the principles that I continue to reflect upon.

Seeing my day in three parts

I read about this idea in Making Room for Life by Randy Frazee. Basing his ideas on how he sees the Jewish people traditionally managing their days he set forth the idea that we break our day into three main parts: Relationship, Rest, Work.

Whether you start your day (in your thinking) the night before, like the Jewish people do, or whether you start at sunrise – we go through the same patterns. We wake up and start our work, then at the end of the day we spend time with our family and friends – relationship time, then we go to bed – rest.

Though that is a very simplistic way of dividing our 24 hours – the idea has helped me manage some of my commitments. I need to have time to work – to strengthen relationships – and to rest. All three are important, all three need to happen.

[Tweet “A balanced life is when I have time to work, relationships and rest.”]

 

Let some expectations go

As I look back over the years – the busy years of young children and all that happens in family life I am aware that I have let certain expectations go. It’s not that we are sloppy and live in a mess, but I choose what I spend my energies on: cooking becomes simple, the windows get cleaned monthly not weekly, I have an ironing pile and iron when I need it, I go to bed every so often with dishes in the sink.

If I were to hold to my ideal homemaking regimes I would not have time to be with my children or other people as housework would take all my time. Expectations need to be realistic and suitable for the season of life we are in.

Seasons of life

What is right for me to do now, wasn’t right for me to do 10 years ago. We have different seasons in our life, and with those seasons come specific priorities. We need to know what our priority is for where we are at right now.

We need to find contentment in what is important for today, and yet know that our today isn’t forever – life does change and we will move into different seasons with different priorities and opportunities.

Finding balance when there is so much to do

 

Saying yes means saying no

We all have 24 hours to our day – so it matters how we use that time; what we say yes to and what we say no to. One of the pithy sayings that help me is “When you say yes to one thing, it means saying no to something else.”

When we take on commitments we need to ask ourselves, what am I giving up for this to happen? What would I be doing if I wasn’t doing this? What will be the consequence if I do this? And then we need to be honest and courageous and go with the priority.

 

Living by my Priorities

A quote on The Rebelution facebook page gives us something to think about:

Priorities move other things around.
What do you make time for?
Does it match what you claim is important to you?

 

Do you know what your priorities are?
Do you make decisions, daily decisions, based on those priorities?

  • Living by our priorities means that we need to learn to say no. We cannot have balance if we say yes all the time – balance means sometimes ‘yes’ sometimes ‘no’.
  • Living by our priorities means that we have to think before we take on something new, we even have to think about what we are already doing and make sure we are consistent with what we say our priorities are.
  • Living by our priorities requires faith – trusting and believing that God is in control, that He will make a way for you.

 

Life with no Balance

When life is out of balance we shake all over the place; we are inconsistent, distracted, sluggish and unresponsive. Much like our cars – we need a wheel alignment!

  • Have a time of assessment – where we talk to God and our spouse about our priorities
  • Have a good honest look at all our time commitments
  • Decide which ones line up with what we know is important
  • Decide how you are going to pull out of the ones that you shouldn’t be involved in.
  • Support each other in that process of letting go

We need to function in that sweet spot – knowing that we are doing the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons. When we have that deep in our heart, we can let other opportunities, other adventures, other ideas pass us by – knowing that we can’t have it all, and being content in that

[Tweet “To find balance in our lives we need to be content with knowing we can’t have it all!”]

Do you need help in your Family?

Hi! I’m Belinda

About Me

Belinda and her husband, Peter, live in the far north-west of Australia on a small farm. They have four adult children whom they homeschooled from prep-year 12. Over this time Belinda has taught and supported women both face to face and online. Her heart is to encourage families to be intentional, relational and heart focused in all areas of family living. She continues to do this in her new season of life – as her kids leave home one by one leaving her with more time.

Certified Life Coach
A balanced life is when I have time to work, relationships and rest.

Over to you:

Love to hear your thoughts:  What’s your biggest struggle here?

4 Comments

  1. Crystal Twaddell

    Belinda, I really like this! I’m all about intention, and I had a friend who literally divided her day and interests into 15 minute segments so that she had time to do everything she loved. It was her way of staying balanced beyond her time of raising children.

    Reply
    • Belinda

      I block my calendar off with blocks for each activity – not just my commitments. So I have a block on my calendar for my housework, for my admin work, blogging work, family time. This makes me realise what I’m saying ‘no’ to when I do say ‘yes’ to something else.

      Reply
  2. Donna Reidland

    Balance is so important. Even with all my kids grown, it’s easy to commit to too many things. My former pastor used to say, it’s a matter of saying no to some good things so we can say yes to the best things. Blessings!

    Reply
  3. Ruthie Gray

    I like your balancing tips. Although in a time period where I thought my life would be slowing down, I find I’m busier than I’ve been in years! This has to do with living in the sandwich generation (taking care of elderly parents and grandbabies, as well as children near and far from home) and my blogging commitments.

    I find myself constantly asking the Lord for discernment on what to drop and what to keep. I think one point you made – talking over with spouses – is important. If we become accountable to someone with all of our commitments, we remain more focused instead of taking on more and more and MORE!!

    Thank you for your wise words, as usual.

    Reply

Let me know your thoughts...

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