Advertising
Advertising

10 Simple Ways to Find Balance and Get Your Life Back

10 Simple Ways to Find Balance and Get Your Life Back

    Life balance seems to be the topic on everyone’s mind of late. We have discovered that maintaining a healthy life balance is not only essential for happiness and well-being; it can be a tremendous boost to your productivity and career or business success as well. A well-balanced person has a far greater ability to focus their attention and energy on attaining their goals, taking productive actions and moving forward in a meaningful way.

    Advertising

    The big question is…What does life balance really mean? What would a balanced life look like to us? And most importantly, how do we go about achieving it in the midst of our crazy schedules?

    Advertising

    There are steps you can take to change what isn’t working and get back some control and balance in your life. And once you start seeing results you’ll be better equipped to maintain that new found equilibrium. The key is not to try to change everything at once, but to make small adjustments over time to determine what works for you. Eventually you will have a whole new set of positive life habits and you’ll never look back!

    Advertising

    Some strategies that work:

    • Turn it off – Disconnect on the weekend. I hear the excuses already, but try it, at least for one day or even a few hours each night. Put the phone down and turn off the computer. Give your work brain a rest. Bonus: Spend the extra time actually interacting with your family and friends!
    • Trim, trim, trim – It’s a given that if your life is overflowing you will never be able to achieve balance and manage it all. It’s just not possible. Say no to everything that is either not essential or doesn’t add something valuable to your life. Be ruthless!
    • Pay attention to your health – We hear this over and over again, but usually only give it lip service. We know what we need to do, but it isn’t a priority until we have a health crisis. Our health really does affect the quality of our lives and our work. We are far more productive and happier when we get enough sleep, eat a little healthier and fit in some type of activity.
    • Minimize toxins– By that I don’t mean chemicals (though that might help too.) Minimize the negative influences around you. Avoid toxic people (complainers, whiners, poor attitudes.) If you can’t completely avoid them, at least minimize contact and tune them out as much as you can. Surround yourself with positive, supportive, can-do people whenever possible
    • Spend time alone – Making time for you is probably the hardest thing to do for the typical overworked and overwhelmed person, but it is crucial for lowering stress, increasing happiness and encouraging creativity. Some things to try; meditate, write, sketch, do some yoga or simply sit quietly for a few minutes each day and do absolutely nothing. You can do it!
    • Relationships do matter – Set aside quality time with your family and friends. Don’t just sit in front of the television, really connect and pay attention to those you care about. Make a date with your significant other, have coffee with a friend, play a game with a child. Really get to know the people around you.
    • Treat yourself– Get a pedicure or a facial. Better yet, schedule a massage. It doesn’t need to be costly; a glass of wine, your favorite coffee or tea, a delightfully scented candle or beautiful flowers will make a huge impact.
    • Explore the world – Take a walk and pay attention to what’s going on around you. Take a new route, visit a new town or try being a tourist in your own. Attend a local performance, play amateur photographer or go to the park and watch children play. They really know how to enjoy life!
    • Expand your awareness – Take a class, learn to paint or try something new that you’ve always wanted to learn. Read a book that sparks your interest or try listening to uplifting music. Find what interests you.
    • Remember fun – Laugh, joke, play, find your sense of humor, subscribe to a daily joke or get a tear-off calendar. Nothing makes the feel better as fast as a good old-fashioned belly laugh.

    (Photo credit: A balance stone in a zen water by Shutterstock

      Advertising

      More by this author

      How to Take Back Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life 35 Reasons You Should Work With a Coach 15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done What Is Emotional Intelligence and Why It Is Important

      Trending in Productivity

      1 How to Break Bad Habits: I Broke 3 Bad Habits in Less Than 2 Months 2 How Long Does It Take to Break a Habit? Science Will Tell You 3 How to Reprogram Your Brain Like a Computer And Hack Your Habits 4 How to Make Changes in Life by Changing Your Habits 5 How to Build a Good Bedtime Routine That Makes Your Morning Easier

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising
      Advertising

      Last Updated on February 19, 2019

      How to Break Bad Habits: I Broke 3 Bad Habits in Less Than 2 Months

      How to Break Bad Habits: I Broke 3 Bad Habits in Less Than 2 Months

      The cycle of bad habits is what keeps us living small and stops us from reaching our true potential. Breaking a bad habit isn’t as hard as it seems; despite being a CEO of a company and raising two children, I still managed to break 3 bad habits I had within 2 months. Yes, that’s quitting one habit in less than 21 days.

      I took steps to eliminate them one at a time. Habits such as drinking Coke every day, slouching when sitting and not having a consistent exercise routine.

      So how did I break these habits? I used the Control Alternate Delete Method (Ctrl Alt Del).

      What is this method and why is it so effective? Read on to find out how to break bad habits with this unique method.

      How to break bad habits with the Control Alternate Delete Method

        We all notice on some level what our bad habits are. A lot of the time we choose to ignore the negative ways these impact us.

        For me, I was sitting most of the day in front of my computer at work in a slouching position. I drank Coke every single day in an attempt to stay awake. I put off any kind of exercise regime because I felt that it was better to just relax and have fun after a whole day of work. As a result, I was leading a really unhealthy lifestyle suffering from weight gain and back pain.

        Advertising

        I needed to make a change.

        I started to read books about building habits such as The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg, The One Thing by Gary W. Keller and Jay Papasan, and The Now Habit by Neil Fiore. After reading all these books, I’ve come up with my own method to quit bad habits — The Ctrl Alt Del Method.

        I started by focusing on just one bad habit, the first one being the sheer amount of Coke I was consuming each day.

        Every day I applied the Ctrl Alt Del Method and after two weeks, not only did I stop drinking Coke every day (I only drank one can in 2 weeks), but I started the better habit of drinking 8 glasses of water every day instead.

        After eliminating one bad habit, I moved on to the other two with this same method and a month later I was:

        • Hitting the gym twice a week.
        • Improving my sitting posture, not only at the office but also at home and everywhere else, improving my back pain.
        • Gaining core muscle which improved my back pain as well.
        • Losing fat around my waist which went from 36″ (considered obese level) to 32″ (normal level).

        If I can improve my life using this method, then so can you. Using this structure to eliminate your bad habits will increase your success and replace your bad habits with more positive ones.

        Control: Master your desire

          Identify your triggers

          Bad habits such as drinking alcohol, smoking and snacking too much trigger the release of dopamine, a feel-good chemical in the brain.[1] Although you might not like the end result, they give you a positive outcome in the moment. This is pure psychology.

          Advertising

          It’s important to identify what is triggering you to continually act out your bad habit. This isn’t always an easy step because our habits have been built up over a long period of time.

          If you need help in identifying your triggers, here’s a list of common bad habits and their triggers: 13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

          Self-reflect

          To help you work out your triggers, do a bit of self-reflection. Ask yourself questions such as:

          • What comfort are you getting from this habit?
          • Why do you need comfort?

          For example, I chose to drink coke because it tasted good and it made me feel good when I was stressed. I slouched only when I sat for too long working on my desk and started to feel tired. I skipped exercises because every day after work I felt I already did enough works and didn’t want to work out.

          If you choose to eat fast food every night, you’re probably telling yourself you’re too busy to cook. But ask yourself why? What are your priorities?

          Maybe you have a lack of self-worth that means you don’t have the self-love to want to look after your health. Perhaps it’s a sign you’re not making enough time for important routines like shopping and creating a healthy meal yourself. Maybe you’ve always had a belief that you’re a bad cook.

          Write a diary

          Write down your thoughts and feelings around this bad habit. Writing things down forces the brain to think harder.[2] This helps you to find the source to your stress or limiting negative beliefs.

          Advertising

          Alternate: Find a replacement

            Find a positive alternative habit

            Once you think you’ve discovered your trigger, try to find a similar but healthy option. This is where I replaced Coke with lemon water; slouching with simply taking a walk and stretching my back every hour; and chilling at home after work with workout exercises that I actually found fun.

            You could decide to walk to the office instead of driving or getting off the bus earlier to walk. You could switch to a healthier breakfast cereal instead of grabbing a sugary snack when you head out of the door.

            By doing this, you aren’t getting rid of the act altogether like you would if you completely gave something up with nothing to fill that void. This helps your brain accept the improved habit more.

            Create a defence plan

            Everyone has moments of weakness and that want to revert back to the bad habit will rear its ugly head. This is where a plan can help counteract these moments.

            Think of things you can do when the temptations come. For example, if you want to check your phone less, ask your friend or partner to keep it for you or switch it off and read a book. If you’re a starter for an exercise routine, like me, get someone to do it with you to keep you accountable.

            Decide on something you will do once you feel triggered to go back to your old habit. Repeating these positive alternative habits consistently will help wire your brain to see them as your normal new habit over time.

            Delete: Remove temptations

              Remove stuff that reminds you of the bad habit

              Getting rid of anything that reminds you of your bad habit is essential. For example, I got rid of coke in my office and at home and replaced my usual office chair with an exercise ball. It makes it much easier to stop slipping back in a weak moment.

              Advertising

              Avoid all kinds of temptations

              In the same vein, avoid places or people that you know will tempt you back into that bad habit. Don’t go to the supermarket on an empty stomach to avoid the temptation to buy trashy snacks, don’t drive past that fast food joint but find an alternative route instead, say no more often to the friend you know will get you drunk again this weekend.

              It’s all about not putting yourself in the situation where you’re in danger of relapsing.

              Conclusion

              The Control Alternate Delete Method uses the right steps you need to overcome your need to indulge in your bad habits. Working with your core psychology, emotions and feelings behind your actions is what makes this method effective and easy to apply to all bad habits you have.

              Bad habits are easy to form and making changes can seem difficult but remember that it’s all about consistency and repetition.

              Start using the Control Alternate Delete Method today and you can stop a bad habit permanently.

              What bad habit do you want to put a stop to once and for all? You must set aside time and pick one bad habit to focus on. Start using the steps to increase and maintain more positivity in your life moving forward.

              More Resources About Changing Habits

              Featured photo credit: Picjumbo via picjumbo.com

              Reference

              Read Next