23 Oct Having a Healthy Balance in Recovery
In today’s day and age, maintaining healthy balance in one’s life is incredibly challenging. Between work, family obligations, hobbies, social activities and educational opportunities, we are all spread dangerously thin. Add to that the fact that smartphones make us accessible 24/7 and our free time becomes even more compromised.
But multiple studies show that maintaining balance is key to health. When people devote too much of their time and energy to only one aspect of their life (typically work) at the cost of other areas of their lives that are equally important to them, they quickly show decreased productivity, increased stress, lower immune systems, decreased levels of happiness and signs of anxiety and depression.
For those of us in recovery, maintaining balance is even more crucial. If we don’t carve out time in our schedules for self-care and recovery work, our chances of relapsing increase exponentially. For us, losing the balance in our life can be literally life threatening.
WHY MAINTAINING BALANCE IS IMPORTANT
Keeping balance and harmony in our lives is absolutely essential. Having a balanced life means:
- less stress
- better health
- more fulfilling relationships
- increased productivity
- higher levels of happiness and fulfillment
HOW DO I MAINTAIN A HEALTHY BALANCE?
So how do we successfully maintain healthy balance in our lives? While there is no fool proof method, there are steps that we can take to maintain balance and make sure our health and recovery stay in tact.
- Make a list of priorities
Write down all of the areas of your life that you feel need and deserve your attention. Include obligations (such as your job) as well as areas of your life that bring you happiness and/or relaxation.
- Create a time log
Spend a week or two logging your daily activity. Write down everything you do, as well as what you spend your time thinking about. Are you thinking about work while you are spending time with your family? Or are you finding that you are spending time at work daydreaming about your next yoga class? Getting a firm idea of where your time and energy is going will help you identify areas of opportunity.
- Create a schedule
Look at your list of priorities and create a schedule for how you would like to spend your time. Make sure to carve out time not only for your obligations, but also for the things that rejuvenate you. While your schedule will inevitably change, carving out time for all the priorities in your life will make you more likely to give them attention.
- Be mindful and present in your daily activities
Try to be mindful and present in everything that you do. When you are at work, be at work. But when you are at home with your family, be present for that as well.
- Schedule time to do nothing
While it might seem crazy to schedule time to do absolutely nothing in our already jam packed schedules, having a bit of free time is necessary to recharge our batteries. Make sure you carve out at least a few minutes every day just to be.
- Make recovery a non-negotiable
Make a commitment to yourself that no matter what else is going on in your life, your dedication to recovery will remain at the forefront.
Maintaining balance in our lives isn’t always easy. We have so many demands – from our jobs to our relationships, from our hobbies to our recovery. But making the effort to remain balanced is crucial – when we have balance in our lives we are healthier, happier and more productive. And we are better able to devote our time and energy to ALL of the things that are important to us.