How to Balance Your Daily Life
Feeling exhausted and overwhelmed by everything you need to do? I’ve got some great ways for you to balance your daily life right here.
If you’ve ever binge watched The Gilmore Girls with your mom, then you’re familiar with one of my all time favorite characters, Paris Geller. (And if you haven’t binge watched The Gilmore Girls with your mom, get on it, sister!)
I love so many things about Paris, but we have to talk about one flaw of hers. The girl has no chill. She is ambitious to a fault, often at the expense of her relationships and her mental health. Although I would love to be as honest and outspoken as Paris, I do not envy her in that.
So how can a girl with ambition keep up with her dreams without driving away her people and sanity in the process? I’ve a few tips for you right here.
1. Balance your daily life with journaling or meditation
Journaling and meditation are both awesome ways to start your day. Journaling helps you organize your thoughts and set your intention for the day. And meditation clears your mind and allows you to start your day in a calm and peaceful state of mind.
A few months ago, I started setting my alarm early to try meditating first thing in the morning. I am not in any way a morning person, but let me tell you… The extra time in the morning is so worth it! Meditation gives my brain a few minutes to wake up before I have to actually do things. And it just feels so peaceful and relaxing afterward. A pretty stellar way to start the day if you ask me!
Related: How to Start Each Day Happy
2. Give friends and family your full attention
Have you ever tried to talk to someone when they were clearly distracted? Super frustrating, right? When we’re busy and stressed out, often the first thing to go is our people. Because they love us and they understand and NYU won’t reject you for neglecting your friends.
But that’s a huge mistake. Your fam can give you the support you need to be successful with all the things you need to do. So make time for them. And when you’re with them, put away your phone and your homework and give them your undivided attention. They deserve it.
3. Sit down for meals
A lot of times when we’re busy, eating right is another thing that gets shoved aside. We might skip meals, eat junk out of the vending machine, or eat with one hand while studying.
But food serves so many other purposes than just stopping our stomach from growling. It smells great. It tastes great. It provides nutrients that our bodies and brains need to function properly. And it’s a cool opportunity to hang out with other people.
So balance your day by taking a proper break for meals. Meals are a great time to hit refresh on your brain and the productivity boost you get from the break will more than make up for the lost time.
4. Spend time on your passion
Malcolm Gladwell famously discovered that the most successful people in a number of different fields (Ex: Bill Gates, the Beatles, etc ) consistently hit their big break after about 10,000 hours of practice. So you might want to start getting your hours in now!
Whatever you love to do most, make time to do it every single day, even if only for 15 minutes. It’s great for your wellbeing and happiness today and it’s also great for your future success.
5. Do something creative
A lot of people claim that they aren’t creative. But, I’ve never met a 5 year old who wasn’t creative. Can you imagine?
Kindergarten Teacher: “Okay class, imagine you have a hot air balloon that can fly anywhere and draw where you would have it take you.”
5-year-old Emma: “Oh, uh, drawing’s not really my thing. Would it be okay if I did a report instead?”
That means that somewhere along the way, a lot of us lost touch with our creativity. And I have a sneaking suspicion that “lack of creativity” has more to do with confidence than actual ability.
Creative activities are fun, let you express your feelings, and help you develop a skill that will be a huge benefit to you no matter what career you wind up pursuing. So exercise your creative muscles in some way everyday and your skills will improve.
Related: 6 Creative Ways to Beat a Bad Mood
Need some more balance in your life? Check it!
6. Balance your daily life by having fun
Believe it or not, fun is a basic necessity. Doing nothing but work just isn’t good for you or your mental wellbeing. Take a break and do something that makes you happy.
This is the saddest thing, but I think you’ll be able to relate. I started having to put “do something fun” on my to-do list to make sure I wouldn’t forget. And any time I’m having a particularly crappy day, wouldn’t you know it, it’s because I hadn’t done anything fun yet. I’m willing to bet that your crappy days are lacking in fun too.
7. Get some exercise
Exercise is so important. Not just for your physical health, but for your mental health too. People weren’t meant to sit at desks all day. Balance your daily life by taking some time to move. It doesn’t have to be anything hardcore like Crossfit (unless you’re into that). It can be anything you enjoy doing like swimming, riding your bike, or even just walking your dog. Trust me, you’ll feel amazing afterward.
8. Balance your daily life by treating yourself
When you work really hard, you deserve to reward yourself. Having strict discipline is very hard to keep up long term. Make sure to loosen the reigns once in awhile so your self control doesn’t give out on the important things.
One of my all time favorite shows is Parks and Recreation. (If you haven’t seen it, go add it to your watch list right now! I’ll wait.) The best episode is the one where we find out that Tom and Donna save up all year for an annual “Treat Yo’Self Day”. I absolutely love this concept and I think everyone should celebrate. Don’t wait an entire year though. Do something nice for yourself every week, or even better everyday. You deserve it.
I am OBSESSED with the DIY recipes over at Hello Glow. If whipping up a facial or bath bombs with ingredients from your refrigerator sounds tempting, go check them out!
9. Ask for help
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, that is a signal that things in your life are out of alignment. Please don’t ignore that. Create some balance by asking for help. You have people who care about you and will be happy to jump in for you. It can be hard to ask for help because we want to be independent and do things for ourselves. But no successful person has ever done it alone.
Think about every awards speech you’ve ever heard. Recipients spend the entire 45 seconds thanking the people who helped them get where they are. So make sure to tag in your team when you need them. (Otherwise you’re going to have nothing to say when you win your Nobel prize.)
10. Balance your daily life by giving back
No matter how busy or stressed we get, it’s really important to make time to help others. It’s the right thing to do, for one. But it’s also beneficial to us. Helping others is great for our mental health and helps to build connections to other people, which is vital to our happiness. Try a random act of kindness everyday. It’ll make someone else’s day and give your mood a boost in the process.
I heard an incredible story about two best friends who dressed up as Disney princesses to visit pediatric wards at the hospital. It has since become a full-out non-profit that has reached thousands of children. The girls love cheering up the kids, but they also talk about how much those connections have benefitted them too. Isn't it incredible what two Disney fanatics can do?
When we get busy, it’s easy to push everything else aside to get our work done. This is a bad habit that becomes a cycle that’s increasingly harder to break over time. Creating balance in your daily life is surprisingly easy to achieve and crucial to your well-being. Make time for the important things in your life. You won’t regret it.