Are you tired? Exhausted perhaps better describes how you are feeling. You don’t have the energy to do anything, but then something picks you up and before you know it, you are once again on the hamster wheel, called life. As competing demands keep piling up, burnout is around the corner.

In life, we wear many hats, we are partners, parents, therapists/professionals, students, employees, friends and siblings. Most times, we are struggling through the various roles we play without much thought for how we are doing. I will be bluntly honest; it is not easy to find balance; it’s nearly impossible. In order to keep going, avoid burn out and continue to be true to those we care about, showing up for things that inspire us, or we are passionate about and to acknowledge our own needs as we do it all, here are some tips that can help.

Make time to have time:

We all know, if it is not scheduled or written on the calendar, it might not happen. To make time for the things you like doing that might take a back seat when other priorities take precedence, schedule them on your calendar and make it a point to keep those appointments. Schedule time to play with your kids, to visit family members, to have coffee with a friend or to take a dance class you have been meaning to take.

Sleep cannot be sacrificed:

Going to bed late and waking up early to catch up on all the things we have to take care of, always seems like a really good idea and gives us a sense that “we are getting ahead” but this only contributes to feeling more tired. When we are sleep deprived, we cannot be productive or effective. To be well rested, we need 7-9 hours of sleep at night and if you have a hard time falling asleep, try guided meditation or listening to nature or water sounds.

Don’t be too hard on yourself:

With everything on your plate, you are bound to forget to call a friend for their birthday, an anniversary or to pay a bill on time. It is okay, your mental shelf can only hold so much information. Go easy on yourself and remind yourself, tomorrow is a new day to do better.

Say “No” now and “Yes” later:

When you are already busy or overwhelmed and can’t possibly take on one more thing to add to your life, say “No” and it does not mean that at another juncture in your life, when you are less busy and overwhelmed, you cannot say “Yes” to the very same thing.

Always make time for yourself:

No matter how busy you get, always make time for yourself even if it is as little as 10-15 minutes to quietly sit and focus on your breathing or by taking yourself out for a treat. Fill your own cup because it is hard to keep giving of yourself, if you having to give.

Written by Roselyn Japes-Shuebrook, LPC