Are you or members of your team part of the “Sandwich Generation”? Those are the ones with full-time jobs busy raising children and also caring for aging parents. A perfect storm for being out of balance.
When my fiercely independent mom needed extra attention over the last few years, I made more trips from Atlanta to Brooklyn. My last visit extended to five weeks and included four Nor’easters and a final “After Easter” snowstorm. Although my twins are now 23, as any parent knows, the raising doesn’t end when they reach adulthood.
So, now that I’m settling back in, I have a moment to reflect on the best practices that have helped me and I wanted to share them with you.
- Put Yourself on Your “To Do” List. When caring for others, you’ve got to remember to take good care of yourself. That includes eating healthy, staying physically active and getting enough sleep. I kept my mom’s refrigerator stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables. We enjoyed steel-cut oatmeal for breakfast, instead of bagels (the best bagels come from Brooklyn!), and cantaloupe for dessert, instead of ice cream. She commented on how much better she felt with less carbs and sweets. I did, too.
- Clean Out the Clutter. Set priorities and drop or delegate unnecessary obligations. You will find the time and space for what really matters.
- Stay Grateful. When faced with challenges, keep aware of what’s going right to maintain a positive mindset. Express appreciation as often as you can to those who support you. I’m grateful for the “village” of family, friends and neighbors who stop by and help out.
What better balance strategies have you used? Please share them here so we can learn from your wisdom.