May is Mental Health Awareness Month. According to youth.gov, Mental Health Month was established in 1949 to increase awareness of the importance of mental health and wellness in Americans' lives, and to celebrate recovery from mental illness.
One important element of Mental Health Awareness is taking care of yourself. Does this seem selfish? At first glance, maybe. But think about this...Think about the people in your life that you truly care about. Think about the people in your life that you want to show up for, that you want to serve. In order to be the best version of yourself to serve them, you have to be your best self first. One way that we can be our best self, is to ensure that we “balance” our professional aspirations and responsibilities with our personal goals, and mental and physical health.
We work in a challenging, constantly changing, and competitive industry. Many of us say "If I only had more time". Just remember that time is a constant. However, how we spend that time is what drives our results, our energy, and to a large extent - our health. In working towards a balance that works for you, Christy Wright provides 5 realistic tips for creating a balance in your life. Click here for the full blog.
Recognize the season you're in. Finding your balance means recognizing that work-life "balance" does not mean that you equally divide your time between work and personal life. It means that you embrace the season that you're in and focus on the things that are important during that season. You might be in a season dedicated to professional growth. In that season, you may choose to spend more time on work to get that additional certification.
Be honest with yourself (and others). Recognize when you've hit your limit and talk to the important people in your life about what that means.
Prioritize what matters. "If everything is important, then nothing is.” - Patrick Lencioni "The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities." - Stephen Covey
Be 100% present. This one has been a challenge for me at times. If you've done steps 1 through 3 and prioritized what you are focusing on, truly focus on it. Don't give in to the temptation to 'multitask' during that training event that you committed to or answer emails during your workout. As Christy says, "Be where your feet are''.
Learn to say no. One of my favorite quotes is from Michael Hyatt, "What gets scheduled, gets done". Take the time to schedule the things that are important to you and your goals (personal, professional, and otherwise) and give yourself permission to say no. If you say yes to everything, you’re saying no to something.
Some additional resources on this topic:
YouTube Podcast - Take Control of Your Life and Business with Christy Wright
Harvard Business Review Article - Work-Life Balance Is a Cycle, Not an Achievement
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