Thursday, 28 May 2009

Keeping Balance

So many things I want to say today. First of all, THANK YOU for your comments on yesterday's posts- as I wrote it, it felt like a sort of 'confessional' and I was thrilled beyond words to find so many people who share the same thoughts/feelings.

Second of all, I did get feedback on my article. Verdict? It is going to be up on the organisations website later this week!!! I am SO excited about this. The positive response I got was such a surprise to me- I really was expecting a, "thanks but no thanks" email from them (*must have more faith in self*). I don't want to go into too many details at this point, but I will say that it is an eating disorders recovery/advocacy network that I am thrilled to be involved with and I am really excited about the work I'll be doing with them.

Which brings me onto today's topic.

Writing my article and submitting it has been both a source of huge enjoyment and stress for me. I LOVE writing, especially when it is something I am passionate about so this was a great thing for me to do, but the stress comes from the perfectionist side of me which kind of kills the 'fun factor'. I get so anxious in situations where I am putting myself 'out there' and open to feedback/criticism, that nothing else seems as important- partly why my sleep has gotten so funky the past week. It doesn't feel AS important as making sure my work is the best it can be, that targets/deadlines are met, that everything is up to scratch. The problem lies in finding a balance between being busy and taking time to look after myself. From reading other people's blogs, I know this is not an uncommon difficulty. My schedule right now is NOT overly crammed full on purpose- I find it almost impossible to draw the line between working and relaxation/self-care so am working on gradually building up my level of commitments whilst simultaneously building up the skills to balance them. For now, I'm doing okay, but the past week has been a 'test' and highlighted the fact that whilst on a day-to-day basis, I'm doing well, there are still a lot of things I need to work on:

  • let go of the idea that I have to be 'perfect': do my best and just leave it at that
  • put my health as a priority: without decent amounts of food/sleep/exercise, I'm not going to be in a state to do anything properly
  • keep it all balanced: I qualified as a life coach a few years ago with a particular focus on developing/maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle...easier said than done, but it's NOT IMPOSSIBLE!

Question for you all: how do you find time to fit in commitments alongside taking care of your emotional/physical health? I read your blogs and am amazed at the amount of things you manage to squeeze into your days (runs, work, cooking, blogging, etc). Do you all have an extra few hours in the day that I don't know about? :P


Munchables...(I think there should be a 'blogger' dictionary- so many terms are used around blogs that people in the 'real world' have no idea what they mean! My family are getting used to me saying, "I'm HANGRY" now!)

Breakfast this morning featured one of my favourite cereals:

For people in the UK, this company now does their own version of MixMyGranola which has been mentioned a lot on blogs- you can check it out HERE.

With cooked apple and Fage...

I had a few hours to kill before leaving for work so I roasted up some vegetables...

(eggplant, zuchinni and onions) that when I came home from work, I could quickly throw together a fabulous lunch:

Okay, it doesn't look so fabulous- you're going to have to trust me when I say it tasted great! Roasted vegetables, spinach and red pepper hummus in flax lavash wrap. I told you I'd do *something* with hummus!

I LOVE roasted vegetables and am so glad I tried hummus again- I think this has the potential to become another regular rotation on my lunch menus. What are your favourite things to put in hummus sandwiches?


Anonymous said...

I disagree - that lunch looks fabulous! The hummus oozing out a little.. mm... I want some!!

Re your question about fitting everything in - I just make it a 'habit' to exercise (in the same way I make it a habit to brush my teeth, wash my hair). Although, this habit has fallen by the way-side a little this week... In any event, you need to know your priorites in order for it to work!

Olga said...

I love hummus with zucchini, cucumber slices, cheddar cheese and paprika. It's delicious! And I'd totally eat that wrap :)

I think balancing is extremely difficult. A lot of the times, I have to choose what to prioritize. This semester, I had difficulty blogging and getting through finals weeks...however, at some point I realized that I find blogging therapeutic to an extent, so it was "ME TIME." Setting aside that "me time" is key in my life because that's when I can recharge my batteries to keep going with all my responsibilities, whether it is reading, dancing, going for a walk, or blogging.

Cacti Don't Cry said...

I know exactly what you mean about having something you enjoy turning into a chore... I was reluctant to major in lit in college because it was something I loved, but I worried that if I turned it into "work," I wouldn't enjoy it anymore.

Fitting everything in is a MAJOR challenge... I HAVE to fit in going to the gym, insanely early before work, because if I didn't, I would be a true zombie. As it is, I have trouble functioning! But there aren't any more hours in the day, so, yeah... prioritizing is key. Unfortunately, I'm not so great at it, but hey... practice should make perfect, no?

As for hummus, the only time I ever seem to eat it is in a wrap / sandwich with alfalfa sprouts. Answer the question? ;)

<3 <3

Anonymous said...

omg Ellen, I love you for that alara link! I just can't get museli in the shops because dried fruit and hazelnuts are out for me as well as gluten. You are officially my favourite person of the week :p
I wish I had fitting-it-in tips, but unfortunately my life at the moment consists mainly of eating and the internet, hehe. In the past when I've been working or studying full time I've invariably fallen to pieces after a few months. I think I need to work on balancing things too. Congratulations for getting you article accepted, that's wonderful!
(I had roasted courgette with my lunch too, yum :) )

K from ksgoodeats said...

Holy cow - I think that wrap looks AWESOME! So creamy and delicious :)

I'm a big fan of hummus with raw veggies (particularly mushrooms)! It's also good grilled in a wrap with cheese (crack wrap).

CONGRATS on the article!! That's fantastic news!

Anonymous said...

hi girlie
i think lunch looks delish!
oooo congrats on the article hun :) im so excited for you!! thats so so awesome! you should be so proud of yourself!

eatingRD said...

mmm . . . I need to get some muesli. You're wrap looks delish, and I would put falafel in it! haha. I honestly don't know how we all fit everything in, sometimes I think I'm not doing enough. But, I have to focus on one day at a time and not get so caught up in plans going perfectly. I get all cooky when plans don't work out so well. I had to cut down on blogging when we were moving. I wanted to ask you what kind of dancing you do and what's your dance story? I'd love to hear :)

Anonymous said...

That lunch looks SOOO good!! There's nothing better than oozing hummus!!

Balance is definitely the hardest part of my life.. ideally I would love to have time to work, exercise, eat right, and relax, but lately the relaxing and eating right has been a little compromised. I'm definitely not as optimistic as I seem on my blog.. there are a lot of days when I come home jsut absolutely exhausted!

Anonymous said...

I'm agreeing with everyone else, your wrap looks amazingly yummy.
CONGRATULATIONS on the article, I'm so happy for you. I know what you mean about your writing, enjoying it, but stressing about it too. I feel/have felt exactly that way too and sometimes I have to just take some time out and get some me time.

Pammy said...

I am so happy that you got positive feedback on your article!!! Congrats girl!

I have a tough time balancing everything too. Right now because I am not in school and not working yet, it has gotten a little easier to manage. but I know that I am going to have a hard time balancing everything- especially next year when I am juggling school, homework, sports, clubs, SAT's, and applying to colleges. One thing I have done in the past is (I am obsessed with my Franklin Covey planner haha) to sit down for 5 or 10 minutes in the morning and make a to-do list and a schedule for the day.

Much love darling

Anonymous said...

Congrats on your article! Very exciting for you = )
I agree with Healthambition about fitting everything in--you have to decide what you want/need to do every day or every week that is going to keep you healthy, happy, and satisfied. I know I need to exercise regularly because it makes me feel happy---the fitness side is an added bonus to the happy side. I read a magazine article recently that said to write down what you do every day for a week and then take a look. Did you do what you wanted to, what was missing? What would your perfect week by like?

I love Hummus! I hate the ASDA kind though. And your wrap looked tasty---i like carrots and tomatoes with it!

Gina said...

Mmmm, great combination of vegetables! Yes, eggplant is very healthy, and tasty :) I like hummus with turkey and tomatoes, but I also like mushrooms and lettuce on my sandwiches! I enjoy trying different types of hummus, like the "extra garlic" hummus I had the other day, it was great.

Anonymous said...

In fitting things into your busy schedule, I think you need to prioritize, what is important, what is not, and take out all the unnecessary things you might do that isn't beneficial to you. also, if you can, find ways to double-task! such as, I eat while I study (keeps me frm falling asleep), read while waiting for buses, trains, cooking, etc, make exercise my personal quiet time...and make a lot of these activities a HABIT. so that you just do them naturally.
btw, CONGRATS on the article! See, I KNEW it'd be great! don't sell yourself short! and I think those are great goals you have! good luck!
for hummus wraps, I love turkey, with fresh salad greens, olives, and a strong cheese like goat's or feta!

brookesballbuster said...

Finding a good balance in life is the hardest thing I think we will do in this life! You are NOT alone! With every phase of life comes something new you have to fit in. It seems like you are doing a pretty good job of balancing to me!...regarding your comment, I don't work 2 jobs. Just a social worker now. I lead a fitness club at the high school I work at and in the future I want to do more in the fitness industry. Thanks for following my blog!

Anonymous said...

Yumm that wrap looks so delicious! I love hummus wraps filled with any veggies, avocado, laughing cow, crumbled veggie , and the list goes on. I think hummus is just plain good with most anything.

Congratulations on the article acceptance! See we knew you would be a hit!

And I think that your goals are amazing and very duable. Just remember that none of us are perfect and that balance is important. Stress is a reality but it's whether you let it take over your life. When things get crazy, just breathe and try to do something for YOU, whatever that may be.

The Novice Berker said...

I'm glad you got a positive reaction to your article!! Definitely have more faith in yourself and in your abilities, and take care of your health too. :( That's sooo important. And I totally understand what you mean about stress killing something you otherwise adore. Keep your chin up; you can do it!

Thinspired said...

YAY! I'm so glad you heard back and got such wonderful news. Congrats! You worked hard for that :)
Re: time/fitting everything in...I'm an odd duck and actually feel more motivated to be productive when I am really busy. Right now, I have a lot of free time and I am finding that it is NOT helping me out to get things done. It's very odd.

Syd said...

Good for you about the article. Many congrats. That is a great accomplishment.

And the food looks great as usual.