Believe it or not, the prescription for maintaining balance for the vast majority of women is this: Learn how to take care of yourself instead of taking care of everyone else excepts yourself. This doesn’t mean being selfish or self-centered. Far from it.

But how can you take care of your loved ones if you’re sick? How can you help others have a high quality of life if your own quality of life is low?

Learning how to take care of yourself usually boils down to learning how to pay attention to what you need to stay in balance, or, to put it another way, learning how to pay attention to what throws you out of balance, and being willing to change it.
Sometimes we need help identifying which parts of ourselves are out of balance.

One way to help bring your life into balance is to identify the areas where you’re at an extreme in your life and then to take small, simple steps to begin to bring that part of your life back to center.

Most women in the midcycle of life are trying to do too much and that in and of itself is a setup for a hormonal imbalance. But there are some strategies for staying more centered that can apply to most premenopausal women. Here’s a thumbnail sketch that can get you started with your own personal list.

Don’t turn on the TV every night.

Switch from coffee to tea (green tea is best).

Limit alcohol consumption to one drink with dinner – eliminate it if it makes you tired or sleepy.

Listen to soothing music or books on tape in the car. Or if you have kids, talk to them. Reserve the car phone for emergencies. Leave early and drive the speed limit.

Learn to say no when you’re about to add another responsibility to your life that you can’t handle.

Indulge in some form of meditation or meditative exercise such as chi gong or yoga and have some type of spiritual practice or higher purpose in your life. This gives you a place inside of yourself to go when things get tough outside.

If you have children, remember to keep track of your own needs as well theirs, and find ways to meet your needs even if it means not meeting their needs perfectly.

There are two working adults in the house, split housework and cooking fairly. Forget about being superwoman.

Tell your partner if something is bothering you. Don’t let small irritations build up into anger.

Get some type of exercise every day. That doesn’t have to mean a trip to the gym for a killer ninety minutes of aerobics. It can mean a walk after dinner, a bike ride with the kids, or some time in the garden. The point is to move your body.

Eat whole, natural foods (preferably organic), drink plenty of clean water, and take a good multivitamin.

Avoid prescription drugs, surgery, and hospitals whenever possible. Find a doctor or other health care professional who shares your values about health and healing.

On the financial front, keep spending within reasonable limits.

Leave an abusive work or home situation if you can’t change it. This includes mental, emotional, and physical abuse. If you are an abuser, get counseling.

If you’re lonely, find someplace to volunteer where you will be helping others.

Get plenty of sleep.

Ask for help when you need it and express gratitude when you get it.

Take time to do things that make you laugh.

Be kind to yourself, forgive yourself, refrain from judging yourself harshly. Give yourself a break.

Avoid being strict or righteous about anything.

Keep in touch with friends and family.

Recognize, accept, and acknowledge out-of-balance emotions, but at the same time, take a dispassionate view of them.

They aren’t to be ignored, but they aren’t to be worshipped either.

Author's Bio: 

Samantha Johnson is the online content manager of Business Book Summaries. Every week, it sends out to subscribers a 9- to 12-page summary of a best-selling business book chosen from among the hundreds of books printed out in the United States. For more information, please go to