Most humans are creatures of habit; change is difficult for lots of people, and trying to take on too much at once can cause significant stress in the best of us. Changing jobs, going through a house renovation or move, addressing health issues, dealing with a new puppy or baby, all create pressures on us and can significantly impact how we interact with others. So, as much as we might feel capable of taking everything on at once, my advice is to try and limit these changes– prioritize and tackle the most urgent tasks first, then work down the list. The less stressed you are, the happier you will be and those around you will appreciate this as well.

We are all juggling a lot these days– these are challenging economic times; few have job security; many have seen their home equity and savings depleted; families are scattered all over; and we all struggle to meet the demands from work and home, often at the expense of finding time for ourselves. But that “me time” is key, and in fact is probably vital to helping us find our center so that we can go on to try and tackle life’s challenges.

If the chaos is overwhelming, it may actually be time for a mini-vacation. I am certainly not promoting that we try to escape our problems (that rarely works), but there is definite value in stepping away from the madness around us in order to gain some perspective. By extricating ourselves from a difficult situation, even just for a long weekend, we are far more capable of seeing the bigger picture. Then, after gathering our thoughts we can step back in to address the most immediate concerns first, and perhaps accepting that some balls may just get dropped. It happens to everyone.