3 keys to finding balance within

As he manages his roles as a Teacher, PhD student, and Outreach Coordinator, Nana takes time to reflect on how we can all find balance in our lives!

Nana has gotten used to effectively balancing multiple roles and responsibilities. Right now, he is a grade 7 homeroom teacher, a Ph.D. student at York University, an Outreach Coordinator for the Black Future Educators’ Pathway at OISE, and a Public Speaker with The Reach Series (TRS). We don’t know how he does it all while keeping that bright smile on his face, so we asked him to share his secret. Keep reading to hear about his three keys to finding and maintaining balance within yourself.

Hey everyone, it’s Nana. Welcome to my first blog post on Fleeting Dreams. If you have five minutes to spare, here are three keys I use to manage my time and find balance on a day-to-day basis: 

1. Work On Finding Your Purpose

Trust me, I know that finding your purpose is not easy. I know that I haven’t even fully figured mine out yet, but what keeps me going is the feeling that I’m heading in the right direction. Each of the responsibilities I have now that were mentioned above impact one another. I will take some time to highlight how. I am a teacher, a PhD student, and an Outreach Coordinator for a program that aims to bring more Black educators into our schools. First, I am motivated to use my insight and research skills from the Ph.D. program to better support the students I teach and their families. Second, my day-to-day experience as a teacher highlights the importance of having more Black educators in schools to help improve the educational outcomes of Black students. Since I have found the common thread between these three roles, I feel that the more I put into one area, the more fulfilling the rest will be. This is why I encourage you to find your purpose and decide if the roles you are currently balancing in life are connected. 

2. Organize Your To-Do List by Priority, Regularly 

Whenever I feel close to crossing everything off my to-do list, more things get added. This can be a stressor but also a way to organize my priorities. I’ve learned to look at this list of responsibilities, slow myself down, and prioritize the most important things. The patience I’ve built and the grace I show myself were built through years of battling burnout. Looking back, I am 100% successful at overcoming challenges and deadlines that, at the moment, I felt like I would never overcome. My advice is to keep track of what you gotta do, identify what is urgent and what isn’t, and then go easy on yourself. You’ll figure out the best way to navigate through your list.  

3. Take Yourself On Dates

I’ve learned the consequences of not finding balance and draining yourself mentally and physically. You start to go through the motions, you’re easily irritated, your creative energy is empty, your social battery is stuck on low, and you start to daydream about being able to lay in bed all day. I would describe this state as burnout. I encountered burnout frequently while balancing being a student-athlete and working part-time at York University. Something I incorporated into my schedule to combat this feeling is to book at least 1 afternoon or evening a month to do something nice for myself alone.  I’ve gone to dinner on my own, watched movies on my own, went shopping on my own, and even travelled to another country. Setting aside this time to check in with yourself is important because nobody knows you like you do. Ideally, the more time you spend focused on self-care and developing your self-awareness, the easier it will be to find your purpose and manage your responsibilities. Trust me, you’re worth it. 

That’s all for now. I hope these keys help you make the most of your time, find balance, and avoid burnout. If you think I should write more blog posts or are interested in my Public Speaking services via TRS, feel free to contact me on LinkedIn, on Instagram, or through the The Reach Series’ public speaking page. If you think I should stop blogging, let me know that too and we can square up. 

Take it easy!


- Nana

Copyright © The Reach Series - All Rights Reserved | Crafted by Quant By Design