As tears pooled in the corner of her eyes a lady asked, “What does an out of balance life look like?”
Like this picture-when you’re out of balance you begin to sink. You have taken on too much!
I unlocked the front door to the house on the hill longing for quietness. My young daughter’s scrambled in around me tossing their school bags on the dining room floor. I plopped my packed teacher’s bag on top of theirs. The teenage exchange student came up from downstairs. I plastered on a smile, yet I craved space and time in my own home. Believing I was selfish I pushed aside my desires.
The teen talked.
There were days I cared, truly, for one human to another. I flitted to fold the laundry that was piled high and stirred the meat cooking on the stove. The school papers begged to be corrected and my daughter’s 5th grade science project needed our attention. I wondered what time I had to have supper ready. I was tired and I grieved secretly for what was missing in my marriage.
My internal bomb was about to blow. I just knew it. No one tells you this, you just know.
I had no margin in my life. Empty space. Like a time out for oneself.
Now hear me here. I loved being a mom, but my voice of warnings was negated by the abuser. So where did I start?
Where do you start?
“Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that’s where life starts,” (Proverbs 4:23, Message).
That’s it. The heart. That’s where I started.
My heart was buried in busyness. My days started with me waking up at 5:30 a.m. and I read my Bible, jumped on the treadmill, and awakened the girls to get ready for school. Then we zipped off to school. I taught. Then we scurried back home, plunged into the household jobs, and juggled my school work while I helped the girls with theirs. Fixed supper. Cleaned up. Started all over each day, everyday.
I flipped on and off diverse hats: wife, mom, cook, taxi driver, hair dresser, laundry supervisor, teacher, household engineer, church member, confidante, daughter, neighbor, sister, a host mother and a best friend to name a few. If there was extra time, I filled that with cleaning.
I ran out of steam and my items on my “to do list” no longer motivated me.
What else was there to do in life? Work, clean, run my girls, and do all of the household stuff day in and day out? And I loved helping my girls.
But, I kicked hard to stay out of the dark tunnel of depression calling me in. I had to face me and the addiction of doing. And the boundary violations occurring within my marriage.
I had to stop. Be still and get comfortable doing nothing. I took time out for me. I stopped.
Out of balance is when your internal engines are telling you slow down, stop, you’re doing way “too much” and most likely for “too many.” Like you are covering up something!
Here’s a few indicators you are out of balance: you’re yelling at your kids more so, you’re sighing, perhaps headaches, sleeplessness, grouchy, a feeling that you’ll never get everything done, and you are asking yourself, how can I keep up?
I coach women to find one thing to let go off. Like throwing a cup of water out the boat. Just start.
One thing…just one. Start there!
Let me know your results. What will you stop?
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