I’m almost embarrassed to post this picture! Yes, this was my desk!!! Heh, at least I had trail mix and Jamba Juice! This is where and how I worked while I was writing my dissertation. I’m slightly embarrassed, but not really. This is what I had to do to get through my dissertation. Now everyone isn’t going to be crazy and get their PhD, but we all have busy lives. Our lives may be filled with busy schedules of children, taking care of ill parents or ill children, work, etc. How can we possibly balance it all??? I don’t have the perfect answer, but I will give a few tips that helped my get through my program with 4 children.
- Think about the different aspects of your life. Mine: kids, husband, church, work, and school. A friend of mine who I met in the PhD program told me to imagine that I am a circus performer and I am spinning plates on my hands and feet! I don’t want the plates to fall or they will break! When one plate is about to fall (e.g., not spending enough time with hubby), I needed to stop what I was doing and go on a date with my husband or just watch his favorite ball game. That plate started spinning again pretty quickly.
- You can’t be everything to everyone. Let some things go! For me, it was my desk. I had a tiny space to write. That is all that mattered.
- Prioritize! What is absolutely necessary? I have a few things on my list each day that MUST get done. Everything else……well, it can just wait. For example, when I was in school, at the start of the day I knew that I would finish a discussion post or one part of an assignment by the end of the day. Nothing was getting in my way.
- Have an outlet. I love to run (not the best, but it feels good). I make sure I have time in my day to run or exercise. Set certain days aside that you will work-out and nothing comes in the way. Right now I run on Mondays and Wednesdays. I lift light weights on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:30 am-7:30 am. No matter what time I go to bed, I have to go or it won’t happen. The rest of my life, works around this.
- It’s OKAY to have a MESSY house! I think people feel that the condition of their houses are a direct reflection of themselves. Well, yes, but what else is going on? For me, my house may be a mess, but I did homework with my kids and they are fed. It’s on to my homework next! No one dies from a messy house :).
There is so much more to balancing. I’m sure I will post more on it later! Please let me know if you do anything special to balance your life!!!