Benjamin Franklin once said, "Either write something worth reading, or do something worth writing."
We all strive to do something meaninful with our lives--to live to the fullest--but how do we live our dreams and still find time to do the dishes?
Amanda picked the topic for this round of the Blog Chain:
How do you prioritize? How do you balance paying attention to your writing, critiquing for friends, spending time with your family and earning a living?
This is a topic that I've been struggling with over the past couple of months, so this seems like perfect timing :). Maintaining balance is such a problem sometimes, and figuring out where writing lies on our priorities can be nothing short of frustrating.
First, I found I had to lay out what my priorities are. After all, how can I decide what's most important if I'm not even sure what all my priorities are?
My priorities include (in no particular order):
* Spending time with my husband
* Cleaning up the house once in a while
* Spending time w/ my family
* Spending time w/ my friends
* Critiquing/beta reading for writer pals
* Working a full time job
* Watching TV (hehe. Well, it's true)
I was finding myself getting more and more stressed out as I tried to juggle all of these things, and finally realized I'd left something important off my priority list. Taking care of myself!
As a Christian, I know I struggle with feeling selfish if I'm thinking of myself or doing something "only for me." However, the truth is, we can't give to others all the time if we're burnt out. It just doesn't work that way! In order to do our best work and give joyfully to our friends, families, and spouses, we have to take care of ourselves first. Once we're recharged, we'll have more to give, and we'll be happier while we do it.
I'm still trying to work out how to fit everything into a day, but I've started doing things like meditating, taking bubble baths, and exercising more often to make sure I relieve stress and stay healthy. It's definitely made a difference, and I feel like I have more to give to my writing, as well as to those I love.
We also have to realize that it's okay if we're not superheroes. If the carpet doesn't get vacuumed for a couple of weeks, no one will call the police. It's gonna be alright! We can't do everything.
Everyone has different priorities, and that is both normal and healthy. If you can't see family one weekend because you need to take care of yourself, go for it. If you need to take a weekend off from writing to spend time with your friends, go for it! Do what's best for you to keep yourself in balance.
I'm still getting there day by day :).
What do you guys do to achieve balance in your own lives? Is it difficult for you? Easy?
Please check out Michelle's answer before me, too! I'm the last link in the chain, so please go to Amanda's post (linked above) to read everyone's contribution :).
I hope everyone had a great holiday!!