Control Your Chaos: Redefining Work-Life Balance
Guest Post By Stacia Pierce. Her Bio follows
Women are generally the ultimate multi-taskers, often dealing with the kids and their schedules while building a career, getting involved in the community and of course, running an entire household. Life gets chaotic very quickly and you may find yourself going 100% from early in the morning until your head hits the pillow. But somehow, even the busiest people can still find a way to successfully get things done while keeping their sanity intact. With a carefully crafted plan and system in place, you can have it all.
As a mother, wife, serial entrepreneur and life coach, I had to create a system that would help me control my own chaos and win at my goals. What follows are some of the methods I have employed and why they really do work!
What I learned is the secret to controlling your chaos is preparation. That’s right, preparing for your daily events can minimize the drama and help you keep your cool when you’re side-swiped by life’s surprises. My secret preparation weapon is my journal. I started using it to write my plans, goals, systems and insight so that I could navigate my responsibilities better. Over the years my journaling process developed into many systems that really have helped me embrace my chaos and redefine what work-life balance means to me. As a result I have been able to have it all.
Most people struggle with balance because they have the expectation that work and personal life shouldn’t mix. However sometimes, it’s hard to avoid mixing the two. For instance, if your kid falls sick during the day, you may have to cut out early to retrieve them from school. Another example, you have a big meeting on Monday that requires you to work a few extra hours on the weekend to ensure preparedness. This has happened to us all.
Real life balance is achieved by properly managing your priorities.
This is done on a case-by-case basis. There’s no set formula to make the magic happen, you just have to plan, prepare and trust your gut in a lot of instances. Balance is also about goal achievement—however you have to direct your time and attention to make it happen. Remove the picture you have in your mind of what having balance is supposed to look like. Focus instead on productivity and the rest will fall into place.
Balance is about choices. We have to make choices every single day. To maximize each day, ask yourself in the morning, “What are the most important choices today that are going to move me toward reaching my goals? Where do I want to be right now in life? What do I want to achieve?” Your choices should line up with your core values and your personal life mission.
The best way to clearly evaluate your priorities is by listing your life.
Write what you want to get done for the day, and use it to determine how to prioritize your business or professional life, and your personal life. Write lists daily so that you can track your progress, and make adjustments when necessary. Lists allow you to get all of the pending obligations out of your head and on to paper so that you can organize, prioritize and delegate tasks to be done. I use my Success Journal to list out all of my activities and responsibilities for the week. Then, I prioritize the list and make a condensed version with only the highest priorities. This list is what I work from daily. Once I have scratched things off, I go back to my original list to add more.
How do you determine what is most important and what you need to focus on?
This is easy to do when you have set goals. Get in the habit of writing and reviewing your goals often. You will move in the direction of your most dominant thoughts. When you write, review and speak positive affirmations about your goals out loud, it will be easy to stay focused and naturally move in the direction of reaching them, because they become your focus. When goals are being met, you will find that you aren’t struggling for balance.
Balancing your lifestyle is much easier to accomplish when you are organized. Organization is the key to maximum productivity and the biggest secret to work-related stress reduction. Lack of organization will lead to frustration quickly. On the other hand, you’ll feel more in control and confident throughout your day when you have order. Use lists to keep everything on track. This is where your lists will come into play. Living by a list will help you get more done. It will help you to prioritize your tasks and your time, so you can ensure you are focusing on the most important tasks first.
Keep a Journal.
Journaling is a creative release that can prevent burnout. Keep different journals: for ideas, for general notes, for your lists, and for reflection and to track your progress. It is good to spend just a few minutes in the morning or at night writing down your thoughts to clear your head and to plan for the next day. Journaling at night helps you sleep better. You can rest well without nagging feelings of unfinished business, or looming projects swirling around in your head at night. Simply drain your brain on paper, sort through your ideas, create plans and always take time to write a list of what you’re grateful for. A nightly gratitude list helps to center your thoughts, bring you into the now and allow you a chance to appreciate all that you have and what you have accomplished. Gratefulness helps to take the edge of your day. Just by taking stock of what you’ve already done can help you sleep more peacefully.
Schedule in FUN.
Allow yourself time to play. We all need a release, some kind of activity that takes your mind of work and responsibilities. Take time out to do what you enjoy. This type of release will refuel your energy, give you new ideas and keep you refreshed.
With proper planning and purposeful action, you can have everything you want in life: great family, awesome career and fulfillment on every level.
Stacia Pierce is life coach, career expert and the CEO of Ultimate Lifestyle Enterprises based in Orlando, FL. Stacia is committed to empowering women around the world to live their dream life and excel in their dream career. She’s affectionately known as the whole-life coach because she helps you tighten the unraveled loose ends of your life and discover your true self so you can give one hundred percent to your career, family and personal life.
Stacia has contributed to various national media outlets such as Redbook, Forbes, Fox Small Business Center, Metro, Entrepreneur and Steve Harvey. She also hosts an annual conference, The Women’s Success Conference, which attracts over 5,000 women annually. and was a top winner on Oprah’s OWN Network contest with 7.6 million votes.
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