How Do You Balance It All?

I’ve got to tell you about my latest Blog Crush! Yes, I get them often in real life and in blog land. I can’t help but adore the fabulous women who come into my life. The latest blogger that I’m sweet on is Simple Mom.

I no longer have the time to read blogs, but I can’t get enough of her so I’ve subscribed to her RSS feed via e-mail. I get daily dose of inspiration and words of wisdom via my inbox.

We live very different lifestyles as her goal is to simplify life and mine is to embellish it. {{giggle}} However, I swear Simple Mom and I are on the same life path as almost all of her posts lately are what I’ve been thinking about!

Her post last week on The Great Myth is a subject that I am going to speak on at SITScation in October. There’s no way I could say is as eloquently as she did, so you’ll have to check out her post.

I also get asked the question quite frequently, “How do you balance it all?” in real life and via blogs. Just like Simple Mom, I giggle to myself because I don’t feel like I quite have the balance I would like to. Life is all about choices, what you focus on, and give & take. If you focus on one thing – something else will be neglected. That’s just life.

For instance:

I don’t cook. I hate it. In my opinion, it’s a big fat waste of time.

I cooked 3 days last week and after spending 2 hours each day in the kitchen – my feelings were once again validated.

I hate to cook. My family doesn’t appreciate it. They complain. Then I complain (in my head).

I’ve decided to keep trying new recipes and cook a couple times a week – for now. Once school starts I’ll probably go back to freezer meals. That’s only 20 minutes in the kitchen which equals an extra 100 minutes for me to get other things done.

How do I balance life?

In all honesty, I don’t know that I do. To me a balanced life isn’t a little of everything every day – it’s getting done what needs to get done while you play along the way.

I’m old school and have a schedule and lists. Lately I’ve had the attitude that it’s got to be fun

* So I watch movies while I work on Tip Junkie and reply to e-mail and fold laundry.

* I have the boys do the chores I hate to do like empty the dish washer, vacuum, and feed the dog.

* I plan activities for my family and invite friends to come along to entertain me.

* I school shop online.

* Drake goes to bed at 7:30 and the boys go to bed at 8:30.

* I create my posts for Tip Junkie at night to automatically post in the morning. This clears up my morning to work out and get other things done.

* I only go to the pool or lake if a friend will go with me to keep me company. {{evil laugh}}

* I have my calendar in my iPhone and it reminds me when I have to be places or do things.

* I don’t let things pile up. {{I hate piles}}

* I throw a lot of things away.

* I theme my days often: Shampoo the carpet day, respond to e-mail day, play at the pool day, throw things away day (purge day), organize day, project day, painting day. I ingore everything else until that task is done for the day – then I resume the regular schedule.

* Every 2 weeks or so, I take the entire day off. No cleaning, no errands, no to do’s. I’ll veg out in front of my flat screen and catch up on the latest series of movies or TV series I’m wild about. I need these days to regroup and relax.

I’ve also been combining the things I don’t like to do with the things that I do like to do. For instance combining Family Home Evening and Scouting. I’m also a huge believer in carpool and child swaps. If I can swap with someone, it’s done. The less time I spend in a car the better.

I also plan my entire month at the beginning of every month. I’m not perfect at it and things get missed – but it really helps.

I have the attitude that “I don’t put off till tomorrow what can be marked off the list today”.

Another thing that helps me are events. I’ll plan a potluck lunch or have friends come over – just to motivate me to get the house cleaned up or the laundry put away. Sometimes I just need outside motivation. If you need that too, plan a Sunday dinner at your house with your favoite people – your home will get cleaned. {{HA!}}

With all of this said, I do miss appointments, I don’t get to attend baby showers or book club, my kids are a constant worry and source of stress, and I don’t have the energy I need to get everything done the way I want.

Life is crazy and I think it’s supposed to be that way. I believe that we can have it all. Just not with a potty training toddler. {{HA!}}

I’m so grateful that I have the opportunity to spotlight creative women every day. That’s such a source of joy and motivation for me. I’m more productive the busier I am because I have to stay on top of everything.

I’m so grateful that I have this blog to document life and the wonderful things in it. It’s been a wonderful grateful journal of sorts and has helped me to keep life more in balance.

10 thoughts on “How Do You Balance It All?

  1. Laurie, I read your blog often and LOVE Tip Junkie but never comment. Thanks for this post. It was perfect timing for me to read this. Thanks for the inspiration. You are amazing!!!

  2. I enjoyed your post! We are cut from the same cloth! I have theme days, too! I don't like to cook, I don't enjoy housework either! I thought the other day about how glad I am when I am hostessing Bunco, 'cuz I KNOW I will get my house really clean! Those ladies go all over the house checking to see what's different!

  3. Hey there, stranger! Loved this post. It makes me feel much better about not loving everything on my plate that I have to eat anyway. 😀

  4. I loved this post. It helped me feel better about things and I will use some of those tips. Really great.

    I hate cooking too and am constantly bitter about the lack of gratitude I get.

    I think I often try to get everything done at once, fail and watch it all come undone. I think its much better to set small goals, accomplish them and move to the next. At least I feel some sense of completion.

  5. you rock girl! love these tips. i think you should write a book sometime. really!
    i believe life is a give and take… and you pick and choose how we will spend the day and what will will do that day!
    you have a great way to balance life!
    thanks for your call the other day!
    i miss you.

  6. I LOVED this post. Thank you. I am a RS President in my ward of over 800 and needed to hear that it's okay to NOT do everything, and that because of where I am in my life right now, I will miss out on things that I'd like to be a part of but can't, like Girls Nights Out, etc. I think I need to take the day off every couple of weeks too! It can all build up sometimes, and then trying to be a mom to 3 young children – balance is so important to me. Thanks again!

  7. I just love your day off idea. Honestly I've never thought of doing that! That's possibly why I feel so stressed/overwhelmed the majority of the time.
    Great post!!

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