Life & Liberty

LOM 70

LOM 70

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Take back your life!


Here are 6 keys to finding balance through God’s grace.
Major points are included below, read entire article Take back your life!


By Dr. Gregory Popcak

People have always struggled to find balance, but somehow, it seems like there is just more to juggle today than there used to be. The technology that is supposed to make our lives more efficient just seems to give us more work. Social pressures make us feel like we have to be all things to all people.

1. Own your life

When we get overwhelmed, we have a tendency to forget it’s because we made choices that we could just as easily unmake. The first step to getting our life back under control is realizing that it’s ours. It might take a little force of will, but it absolutely can be done.

2. Remember that time, energy, and willpower are limited resources

A lot of folks can’t generate enough time, energy, and willpower to do what they feel needs to be done. But that doesn’t mean they are failing; it just means they’re human. We must realize we only have so much to give. When we do, then we’ll be better stewards of our time and save more of it for the people and activities that are really important.

3. Put relationships first

Relationships can be a huge source of comfort and peace — if you take care of them. Research consistently shows that people with strong relationships — especially strong marriage and family relationships — feel more balanced and more resistant to unhealthy stress. As Catholics who believe that families are “schools of love,” we need to make sure that class is in session for enough hours every week that we have time to learn how to celebrate all the virtues that enable people to live life as a gift.

4. Instill routines, rituals, and rhythms

Multiple studies show that the presence of rituals and routines in a person’s, couple’s, or family’s life counter- acts the emotional, relational, and physical problems that often accompany stress, including depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, and divorce. Establishing routines allows you to know what’s coming and to think ahead so you can exercise your creativity when it’s time to celebrate that routine.

5. Embrace “no”

Doing the priorities exercise and establishing a rhythm of life through regularly scheduled rituals and routines helps you get an objective sense of what you can and cannot do so that when someone asks you to commit to something, you have an objective basis (your established schedule and rhythm of life) for accepting or declining. The additional clarity helps eliminate the guilt of saying no and relieve the stress that comes from a too-cluttered life.

6. Refresh with timeouts

If you set your priorities and establish the rituals and routines that give a semblance of order to your week, then having the occasional timeout can be refreshing and restorative. Life is stressful, but you can get on top of the chaos and learn to ride the wave — and enjoy yourself while you do it.