Category: Spring into Balance

A 10 week initiative aimed at increasing our own happiness.

Week 9: Letter to the Future

In this world of social media and “soft” copies of everything, we are seldom squirreling away paper prints of photos or paper letters like we did in our childhood days.  Way back in middle school I remember writing notes to friends (and receiving them), and I would save them in a box in my closet.  It was fun to look at them years later and see what we were thinking about and scheming about at that age. (more…)

Three Secrets to Avoid Overwhelm


This 10 week initiative from Good Not Perfect and Simplify, Live, Love is aimed at simplifying, finding time for yourself, and being happier. You can read about the 10 week project here and here.  This week, Week 8, we are so excited to have a guest post from Joanna at Actual Organics who has been following along on our challenge.  I love Joanna’s focus on unplugging and getting outside, which is often hard for those of us who enjoy writing.   I know Michelle has struggled with this lately, as have I.  So the following post definitely resonated with me.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I have. ~Laura

Social media will still be there tomorrow.  Take time today for some peace and quiet.  Spring into balance challenge.

Do you feel overwhelmed?

It is really easy to feel overwhelmed in today’s 24 hour lifestyle, isn’t it?

I think social media is a pendulum of positive and negative swinging back and forth many times a day. But it is rather like comparing someone else’s completed film / movie to our edit room cuts!  Social media allows, perhaps encourages, comparisons all day long and I don’t think it’s healthy.

It is possible to break the cycle, to unplug, reconnect and avoid overwhelm. I did it as I realised being constantly connected and striving to achieve was a negative influence in my life.

I had a constant sense of ‘I could do more’ and being a writer there is always more I could write about or share on Twitter!

Recently, whilst in the UK, I did not have ready access to a computer and it was wonderful!

I felt like I’d gone back in time; you remember when folks simply read a book in a coffee shop with no other distractions or where you could sit at lunch and not see a sea of people scrolling and clicking!

Unplugging is something I discuss in my book The Radiant Woman’s Handbook. Unplugging may stretch you and you may well feel resistant to it but if avoiding overwhelm is a priority then you’ll succeed.

3 secrets to avoiding overwhelm

1. Set boundaries

It is important to set boundaries or modern life may take over. Remember there will always be someone achieving more (or at least telling others they are) but we only see one side of it, achievement comes at what cost?

Set aside time for some morning quiet time, eat a proper breakfast before letting the work emails or social media in to your life. Make it family time before social media time! Doing this requires you to set boundaries.

Maintaining healthy boundaries is paramount for a radiant woman.  As I say in my book, “On an aeroplane, the flight attendant says that before helping anyone else with his or her oxygen mask you should put your own on first. Every flight I have been on they say this.”

They do not say, “Put masks on everyone else around you and exhaust yourself, perhaps not even making it back to your seat.” They do not say “You are only worthy if you help others first so disregard your own needs entirely.” No, they say “Put on your own mask first.” Perhaps there is a lesson for us?”

Checking your emails first thing in the morning often leads to entering the email vortex. Do you check your phone before breakfast?

It is better to check emails at certain times than constant checking them when you hear a ping. I have the sound off on my computer so I don’t hear when an email comes in; I don’t spend my day whizzing backwards and forwards between work and emails, it’s too exhausting!

2. Go outside

Nature is so important for reconnecting and rebalancing | #springintobalance

Getting time outside is a refreshing way to avoid overwhelm; too much time inside can lead to a feeling of blurry ’jet lag’ without having even got on a plane! [1]

We need sunlight (daylight) to set our circadian clock, I talk more about how this influences sleep in my book. Daily outside time is key to a healthy, happy lifestyle.

Being outside also allows the pings and notifications to stop, well if you leave your phone at home that is! Can you do that?

Why not try, leave the world behind and go for a walk just you, your dog, or child, and nature stretching its beauty before you. Outside time is vital for reducing stress and creating balanced wellbeing.

3. Celebrate you.

With demands on your time from work, family, social connections and all the other things you have to do, do you forget about time for yourself? Do you say kind words about yourself or are you saying negative things about yourself?

What do you enjoy? Perhaps sitting in a coffee shop for half an hour or venturing out on a walk around the block in your lunch hour (without your phone)? Enjoy the silence in life, nothing but the sounds of the city, or countryside, depending on where you life.

A while ago I started to schedule time for a walk just like I would a meeting. It was in my diary and just as important. Don’t underestimate how important a walk or bike ride is to your wellbeing. It provides fresh air, exercise, time out and balance in a busy world.

Taking time for yourself is not a waste of time.

Hopefully you’ll take action to avoid overwhelm before it overwhelms you. It’s a powerful step, will you join me?

Very best,


Joanna writes about non-toxic ways to simplify life and look radiant.  She writes at and has her own Canadian  newspaper column on non-toxic living.  She is the author of “The Radiant Woman’s Handbook: sensible, positive solutions for reducing toxins and loving your body” available on Amazon and in good bookshops.  Find her on Twitter or Google+
To sign up to Joanna’s newsletter and get your downloadable resource pack including a sneak peek at her book visit:

Week 8: Using those spare moments


This 10 week initiative from Good Not Perfect and Simplify, Live, Love is aimed at simplifying, finding time for yourself, and being happier. You can read about the 10 week project here and here.

Spring into Balance - a journey toward finding happiness

Well, congratulations. You’ve made it through the “making time for yourself” bootcamp.

Ok, timeout.  I have to be honest here.  I have not had time to do my journal entries every week, so I imagine you may have not either.  But like me, I hope you’ll at least reflect on the topic and make time to do these journal entries over the next few weeks – at your own pace.  Sitting down and writing each post at least makes me stew on the topic, and I am glad I have set up this framework that I can revisit when I’m not in the process of switching jobs and wrangling grumpy 18 month olds. (more…)