My Word of the Year

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I have decided that this will be my word for 2017 — my overarching goal over several aspects of my life.

This year, I want to be more purposeful especially in the following:

MARRIAGE : Before the kids, there was just N & I.  Along the way, it is easy to let the partnership take a backseat among everything else that needs attention.  This year, I want to make sure that N & I spend time together –just the two of us.  I am not talking about grand vacations or fancy dinner dates (although I wouldn’t mind having those too 😜).  I just want to make sure that we will consciously pencil in couple time in our schedules and create opportunities to connect with each other regularly.

PARENTING:  I have a teen, a tween and a toddler.  Each of them needs me but in differing ways.  I want to make sure that I am able to spend time with them individually and hopefully, get to know each of them in a deeper way.  I want to be able to nurture each of them in ways that they most respond to and this means that I should be attuned to their learning styles and peculiarities.  Intentional parenting also means being aware of my actions and language around them as this is something that I know affects my children directly and indirectly.

HEALTH: Now, more than ever, I realize how important it is to take care of one’s health.  While growing older might be inevitable, I want to be able to do it gracefully.  Part of my being intentional is eating healthier — more veggies in the diet, less junk, less sweets.  I am not quite the sporty type who will wake up early in the morning to do a 3km run so I will not even write that down as my action plan 😄😄.  Instead, I will be more conscious in doing more walking and stretching and doing quick exercises.

There are a few more items that I wish to start working on this 2017 including this blog, more creative work and building stronger personal relationships with loved ones and friends.  I hope that having this word as anchor will help me achieve these goals for the year.

How about you? What is your word for 2017? 😊

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Finding Balance

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Life is a constant balancing act.  With so many things required of us, we need to always manage our time and choose our priorities all the time.

My life is no different.  As a working mom, I am used to juggling office issues with homework and grocery lists.  My daily routine would include ensuring an updated menu for the house as well as keeping up with the emails I receive in my Blackberry (yup…still on BB! 😛).

I guess we’re always looking for the right proportions of work and home life, business and pleasure.  It’s about setting aside some kids’ time, getting some couple time and finding some “me” time. I know, I know — easier said than done!

In my case, N & I hardly ever get any quality couple time these days.  It was particularly difficult when we had no driver and (for a while) no yaya.  We had to arrange everyone’s schedule on a daily basis and shuttle from office to school to trainings in between that by the time the week is over, all we really want to do is rest at home…which of course, hardly ever happened because weekends seem more jampacked than weekdays! 😧 IF we were lucky to have extra time, we opted to stay in and sleep.

Admittedly, attending to the kids takes most of my free time. Football practice, tournaments, gymnastics training, competitions, play dates, doctor’s appointments…I could go on and on with the list!  Still, there are times when I feel that I am neglecting the two older ones in favor of the baby.  I guess it’s understandable on most cases, but those instances when S would come up to me and tell me she misses spending time with me, my heart would hurt and wish that I could have three sets to arms to hug them all at the same time!

“ME” time has taken a back seat for sooooo long, I don’t even remember when was the last time I really enjoyed some quiet, relaxing time with myself.  I know that everyone needs a breather once in a while, more probably so for working moms…but really, when does one find the time?!! Oh, the irony!

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So as I mull about this, I realized that time is really a scarce resource.  And if I am to find that balance, I have to be intentional and purposeful on how I spend my precious time.  If I simply “go with the flow”, it’s easy to get lost and drowned in the sea of endless tasks and activities.  Sharing with you also some realizations I had:

1.  Simplify.  Minimize. >> We all get our share of invitations, both for work and socials.  It can be difficult to turn down these invites but truly, it’s impossible to go to every single one of them.  The same is true for children’s parties and play dates and kiddie activities.  Choose those which really give joy and those where your presence would really matter.

2.  Breathe. >> When it gets overwhelming (and it inevitably does, remember to breathe.  Take a step back and re-assess the situation.  When I do this, I almost always find a better perspective and I am able to move forward.

3.  Choose relationships.  >> When it comes down to it, always choose to strengthen and nurture relationships that matter.  Date your spouse.  Date your kids— individually, not as a team.  Date your best friend. Date your mom.  Date yourself.  Make time with those that matter.

Finding balance is always a work in progress.  It is a choice that we make every day.  Make yours count.

Cheers!

*photos taken from web