There was no time for exercise. Weekends were often spent doing chores. I was rushing through the ‘to do list’ of life, ticking off each item as i went, from early morning until i finally sat down and took a breath late evening.
I was on this treadmill called life and it was not slowing down. I had no choice. I simply could no longer do all the things i used to do at the same pace.
Once the brain is penetrated it’s never the same and i get tired quicker than before. The experience made me take stock in order to lead a more balanced life, and to make changes in order to feel normal and healthy again. It was a difficult process as i learned to adapt my lifestyle and to accept the ‘new me’.
I get to exercise every day. I have time to prepare meals and not just eat on the go. I have time to pursue my passions like painting and writing.
I go to bed early and get enough sleep to wake refreshed each morning. I stress less and i get to earn a living on my terms. This life-changing process taught me a great deal.
It’s given me a new outlook and perspective on life and on what’s important. I recognise that health, family and fun are vital aspects and they need time, space and nurture, and it’s truly important to slow down and enjoy each day. There is a perception in our society that the longer hours one works the better their work ethic and the more successful someone will be.
But research shows that working fewer hours and having life balance gives a person more energy, motivates them more and makes them more productive. It’s about working smarter, not longer. Businesses are becoming more flexible as technology allows them to be open to the idea of staff working from home.
They’re getting leaner with tough economic times and as they seek to outsource the human component to become more efficient, it leads to an opportunity for individuals to decide their hours and working conditions. The reality for many people, however, is they simply can’t just give up their day jobs and make a go of it on their own. Often we are told by inspirational figures who have risked all to follow their dreams and reached great heights of success, to do the same, to go out there and just follow your heart.
And when we don’t, because of the reality of our situation or financial responsibilities, we are then wracked with guilt of a life unlived. But maybe sticking to that job is the right thing to do, especially if you have a family to support. The issue rather is that we don’t take the time to experience and appreciate quality in the small things in life, in experiences where we can derive our real joy and fulfilment.
The stress of our jobs drain every last bit of energy we have to enjoy our lives and it robs us of quality time with those that are really important to us. We live today where everything is faster and we have more stress. How does stress help a situation? it really doesn’t change our situation; it only stops us from seeing and enjoying the good in our lives.
We can still lead productive lives and be calm at the same time. Change what you do in daily life. Bring some connectedness and peace into your life.
Sleep well, exercise, go for walks, meditate, spend time with your family, light scented candles, play music, go for a monthly massage, eat healthy food, eat delicious food, enjoy quiet time, laugh more, say yes more often when people want to help, delegate more, take holidays and try things you’ve never done before. I reckon a bit of frivolity by way of its very nature of being carefree, whimsical and merry,actually is very meaningful in life so we don’t take ourselves and life too seriously all the time. Do things just because they’re fun and you want to.
1. The 3 p’s – prioritise, (be) present (and be) positive prioritise – write a list of what has to get done that day. The rest is just background noise.
Be present – when you’re in meetings, when you’re chatting to your best friend on the phone, when you’re helping your child with their homework, focus on the task at hand and allow your attention to be available to them. Being distracted by the to do lists in your head or by whatsapp messages coming through on your phone is stressful, it takes away the enjoyment of that particular moment and it’s disrespectful to the person you’re with. Be positive – i do believe it’s important to be in a job you enjoy.
Often it’s a grind, often we complain and join in the office politics, but a positive attitude can do wonders to how you approach your day and your job. If you’re grateful for your health, for example, then you’ll be happy that you’re well enough to get out of bed in the mornings and go to work. If you’re grateful for your income and the lifestyle it provides, then you become more appreciative that you have a job.
2. Diarise exercise as you would a meeting exercise promotes longevity and helps you feel good. If something comes up over that time, you’re simply unavailable.
If it were a work meeting in your diary, you’d make the time to go and you’d decline any new requests, so why not do it for exercise? 3. Live close to work i know it’s not always possible, but living close to work can potentially take hours off your day and it can increase energy and minimise stress. Driving in traffic is stressful and draining, not to mention a complete waste of time.
You could be doing something more beneficial like putting your feet up or going for a walk. If living close to work is not an option, request you arrive and leave a little earlier. That way you work the same amount of hours but you miss rush-hour traffic.
4. Pre-cook dinners cook large batches of food that you can freeze in portions, for example, a chicken casserole that can be defrosted as a week-night meal. If you are currently responsible for all the cooking, get your spouse to share the load and take care of dinner at least two nights a week.
Take turns doing the grocery shop or do it together to make it a fun outing. 5. 6.
Negotiate a bit of flexi-time negotiate with your boss one afternoon a week where you leave early or forfeit your salary increase for shorter working hours. 7. Go to bed early get enough sleep.
Watching tv in the evenings is often wasted hours in the day. Rather just go to bed. It’s a far more beneficial way to spend your time, and you wake up feeling like a million bucks, ready to take on the day.
8. Be grateful for the small things in life be mindfully grateful for your health and for your family, and notice and enjoy life’s simple pleasures like a good meal, a comfortable bed and your home. They are still hard working, they are still driven, they are still passionate but they are not ashamed to put family, leisure and personal pursuits and goals high up on their priority list.