Module 4 Healthy Mind, Healthy Mother

Finding Balance

A sense of balance is an interesting and useful way to consider how to achieve good health and a positive, healthy mindset.

Balance inside yourself is a satisfying feeling and calm mindset that results from knowing that you have:

  • Balance between your values, what is important to you, and how you spend your time
  • Balance in the energy and effort directed towards others versus yourself.
  • Your emotions in balance (less sadness/anger and feeling mostly okay or good),
  • Your energy in balance (less fatigue and feeling mostly energised),
  • Your confidence in balance (less doubt and misgivings and more positive regard for yourself/others)
  • Your hope in balance (optimistic outlook versus pessimism and fear)

Balance outside yourself is a sense of confidence that you have the right combination of activities for yourself to manage daily life and your family.

  • Balance in the time spent in ‘work’ (paid or unpaid) and rest
  • Balance in the types of activities that you find difficult versus manageable
  • Balance in your time spent caring for your children/family and time for yourself
  • Balance in the time spent in active or sedentary leisure
  • Balance in the time spent alone or with others
  • Balance in your interactions with people you enjoy versus people you find more challenging.

Life demands that come from outside of yourself can make us feel imbalanced inside. For example, many responsibilities, too much time spent caring, too much time spent alone or being sedentary can cause a feeling of imbalance inside, dissatisfaction, discontent and frustration. Everyone’s sense of balance is personally felt. While one person needs more sleep, time alone, time being physically active and places a high value on being productive, another person will be opposite and both can feel equally balanced and satisfied. It’s up to you to find your own balance.

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Do you feel balanced?

Achieving a sense of balance with a healthy mind set and balance within the daily tasks and responsibilities that are unique for you in your life can take time and planning. Mostly mothers say that time spent on required tasks and responsibilities take time away from activities that would enable them to feel more balanced.

Finding a balance and bringing in activities that we chose to do for enjoyment, enrichment or for health are goals with which many of us struggle. The complex nature of raising a child with a disability can make a healthy life balance seem like a remote possibility some days.

Stress can be a consequence of feeling out of balance.

Mothers describe the ongoing pressure related to performing various tasks and meeting responsibilities for their child’s needs. Mothers also say they are unable to reduce many of the tasks because they are necessary for the well-being of their child and family. In this instance, exercising a mindful approach to the daily schedule, applying simple strategies to stay focused and efficient with the tasks at hand, and finding some time to spend with supportive others, to be physically active, or do a relaxing energy replenishing activity can make all the difference.

Balance is achievable through planning, education and prioritizing your needs. If you feel like you can’t right now, have a listen to the mothers who tell their stories in this website. Change is possible for you too.

Entry last updated 21 January, 2020