A 3-Step Guide to Balance Busy Women

Renda Moore Cline | Woman of Power | Project Heard

 

By Renda Moore Cline

Guide to Balance Busy Women | Project HeardWe all are given twenty-four hours each day. None of us are cheated of an hour or two. And nobody gets an extra five, because of a pressing issue.

There’s a saying, “If you want something done, ask a busy person”. Well, as a very busy woman, I have been asked or, “voluntold” to do many things, both large and small. There was a time I felt I never had any free time and forget about “me-time". That is because someone else “needed me” or “expected me” to do something for them.

Sometime around the age of twenty-five, I had a revelation, epiphany, or an “AHA” moment. I realized my time and I was just as valuable as the next person. My 24-hours were given to me as a gift from God, the same as everyone else. The same way I needed to be a good steward of my money, I needed to me a good steward of my time.

I knew I would never let anyone waste my money, so why would I let them waste my time? I had no problem telling people they couldn’t use my money to throw into something that was wasteful. Yet, I repeatedly let them use my time on something that was maybe not wasteful, but not useful or necessary. Then I was left with no time to do what I wanted or to simply rest up.

I knew I had to put a stop to that cycle, but I just didn’t know how to do it without feeling guilty for not helping or not being there for others. Through my trials and tribulations I found three steps to clear away the the extra “noise” in my already very busy life.

STEP 1: Learning to Say, “No” for Balance. 
My initial attempt to stand up for me and my time, I was just honest. I said “I’m sorry, but I’m going to the museum that day,” or “I‘m sorry, I’m going to rest and pamper myself that day.”  Well, these clever manipulators of my time would say, “You can do your thing any time, but I really need you for this now,” or “Can’t you do this before or after whatever you have to do?” I soon learned, my approach was not working.  

So I changed my response to, “No, I’m sorry, but I’m not available.” And it actually worked! The first time I told someone, “No” it felt a little wrong, but so liberating at the same time. I could actually do what I wanted in my free time. I actually had “me-time.”  

STEP 2: Invest in Yourself.
I pampered me, went back and finished college, and I volunteered to do things I wanted to do. I’ve found that now when I volunteer for things (and I volunteer many hours each week), I feel great about it. That’s because, I choose to do what I want to do, and I respectfully decline when I don’t have the time, or just don’t’ want to do something, or when I need time for Renda. If I need to spend time resting, restoring or enhancing myself, I don’t have to justify or rationalize that with anyone else. I deserve that, you deserve that, we all deserve that. And I’m a better mother, friend and woman when I invest in me.  

STEP 3: Say, “Yes” Only When You Want.
When you do say, “Yes”, and you mean “Yes”, you feel better, because you don’t feel used, overextended or manipulated.   

My simplified life balance advice to every busy woman I meet, is: learn to say, “No. I’m sorry, but I’m not available”, invest in yourself, and say “Yes” when you want to say, “Yes.” Balance is necessary for quality. You will find that you’re a better person to others when you are a better person to yourself. It may be hard the first time, but you will get used to the idea of allowing yourself some personal time. We all get twenty-four hours each day…no more and no less. Spend yours wisely.

Renda Cline is an educator in the healthcare field.  Community health and education are two of her passions.  She feels having balance between work, community service, and personal growth are essential for a healthy outlook on life.  Contact Renda at Theracline@aol.com.
 

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