Creative Child

Boundaries and Balance:
 Taking Control of the School Year so It Doesn’t Control You

by Rebecca Eanes

Taking Control of the School Year so It Doesn’t Control You

Mind your calendar, your yeses, and your boundaries. Only you know what level of busyness you are comfortable with, and that’s different for each person. Be intentional about minding your calendar so that it doesn’t become overstuffed with activities that don’t add value to your lives. This is where healthy boundaries come into play, and getting comfortable with saying “no” will be of benefit. From her article “3 Ways to Set Boundaries and Learn to Say ‘No”, therapist Jennifer Rollin says that the first step in learning to set boundaries is to uncover your own personal limits and guidelines. Simply put, it’s learning to tune in to your inner voice – something I talk about in my book The Gift of a Happy Mother.  When you get crystal clear about exactly what you want, what you believe, and why, your own voice will be able to rise above all others and lead you. The second step is the learn how to tolerate the reactions of others. People may get disappointed or even angry when you set boundaries, but that isn’t your problem. You’re only responsible for your own reactions and behaviors, so don’t feel guilty if you let someone down because you’re prioritizing what’s right for your family. Her third step is to engage in acts of compassionate self-care. In The Gift of a Happy Mother, I give several practical tips for how busy moms can pack in some time for self-care. You can define what self-care means for you, and it doesn’t have to look any certain way! Once I let go of unrealistic ideas about self-care, it became easy to find practical acts that nourished my mind, body, and spirit. I realized I can pour a little at a time throughout the day and still end up full of joy.

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Focus on joy for 10 minutes a day. Listen, it’s easy to lose sight of all joy in the midst of the chaos of the daily grind, but missing out on the joy means letting life pass us by, and these years, though they are busy, are full of beauty and goodness. Set a habit of focusing on your joys for at least ten minutes each and every day. Start a joy journal or jar and jot them down. After all, you deserve to be happy in your one, precious, busy life!

Rebecca Eanes is the bestselling author of multiple books including Positive Parenting: An Essential Guide, The Positive Parenting Workbook, and The Gift of a Happy Mother. She is the grateful mom of two boys. 

 

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