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Busy but Balanced

Michelle Hottya
Santa Clarita CA USA
Report on a session from the 2003 LLLI Conference
From: NEW BEGINNINGS, Vol. 20 No. 5, September-October 2003, pp. 178

Mimi Doe is a mother familiar with the hectic nature of raising two children while trying to keep a household running smoothly. From these experiences, she has gained insight on creating calm and fostering spirituality for the family, which she shared in her session, "Busy but Balanced," titled after her book of the same name. Mimi offered several tips to help the parents in her audience. Calling children "the Buddhas in the back-seat" for their uncanny wisdom and simple way of looking at the world, she encouraged the audience to take a similar view of life by pausing to examine the lives they are living with their children.

Some of Mimi's suggestions for developing balance in family life include:

  • Design a road map for your life.
  • Learn to say "No" and not over-commit.
  • Articulate everyday beliefs that can be shared with the children.
  • "Pick the thing with feelings" when choosing priorities.
  • Get rid of the "energy vampires" by taking basic steps to eliminate, delegate, and simplify.
  • "Ditch the guilt" by making it a positive motivator to take action.

Mimi emphasized the importance of managing your child's schedule so it doesn't become too busy, and sharing a family night every week. She encouraged her listeners to develop habits of reverence, to practice authentic listening, and to create a predictable rhythm to the day so that children know what to expect and have pockets of time for quiet as well as for being heard.

As the session closed, Mimi encouraged everyone to remember what is most important in their lives, and to discuss with their spouse ways to achieve their ideal day and family life.

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