How I Manage My (Im)Perfectly Balanced Life

When I am introduced, I am often referred to as Heidi Powell—Co-Host and Transformation Specialist on Extreme Weight Loss, wife of Chris Powell, and mother of four.powell224

Yes, all three of these things are full-time jobs, but they are far from my only roles. Realistically, those are only 3 of my 10-20 jobs I fulfill every single day. I KNOW I’m not the only one who wears 1,000 hats everyday and somehow manages to stay sane. (I’ll be the first to say, some days I’m NOT sane).

You may have 2-3 main roles that identify you, but in reality, we have a gazillion people we need to be just to make the world go ‘round. I mean…how many of you reading this are moms? If you are (or even if you aren’t, you’ve most likely been around kids so you can hopefully get this), you know that being a MOM is more than just a full-time job. It’s an around the clock job, and it’s one that demands every last bit of energy, patience, and multi-tasking that we can muster up.

Moms—we are AWESOME. Virtual high fives to anyone and everyone who keeps kids alive, fed, and (mostly) happy…all in a days’ work. Some days, we overachieve and actually feel like we deserve a pat on the back. Other days, we are thankful there are no secret surveillance cameras in our homes to document our downright AWFUL parenting moments.

And please tell me I’m not the only one who starts sweating at the thought of secret cameras in my house. But this begs the question I get asked ALL too often: How on EARTH do you balance family, work, and your own fitness?

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Here’s the truth: Sometimes I don’t. Plain and simple. Sometimes I SUCK at balance, the same way you might feel you do. While my “balance” has improved much over the years and I have days I feel like I am “killing life” (in a good way), there are many times I don’t “do life” as well as I wish I did. It destroys me when I lay in bed at night and think of the many ways I may have let my family down, or mis-prioritized something that needed more attention. BUT…I’ve come to accept that I will NEVER balance life perfectly. I give myself grace and remind myself how I can do better the next day.

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We are all human. Yes, I am too. I struggle and cry over spilled milk. I get caught in my own head occasionally—most often after too much time spent on social media looking at every other woman’s seemingly perfectly balanced life.

If you can always remember these THREE things, you can say goodbye to emotional struggle and hello to more joy:

  1. Stop comparing: When we compare our reality with another woman’s highlight reel on social media, we are setting ourselves up for disappointment and self-deprication. We will NEVER live up to that illusion we see so many people creating from their false “Happily Ever Afters.” And that’s not to say life isn’t beautiful for some, but behind every seemingly-perfect Instagram account is a whole load of baggage and struggle in that individual’s life. MYSELF INCLUDED!!!! If we only knew what the most put together Instagram mommy was dealing with, we would no doubt happily stay in our shoes… with our struggles… and our successes. And PS: Please keep in mind that EVERY SINGLE PIC in this post is the product of a professional photo shoot. Meaning we had someone styling and dressing us, doing our hair and make up, and then most likely touching it up in Photoshop to make it look better than in actuality. Truth! So don’t get discouraged…my everyday real life doesn’t look even close to this!!
  2. Discover your gifts: What is it that YOU love to do and excel at? Again, the trouble with social media is that you are not only looking at ONE person’s highlight reel, but the BEST talents and gifts of every person you follow any time you sit down and flip through your phone. Say you follow 100 people. You are seeing 100 different talents, 100 different skills, 100 different husbands, and 100 different levels of success. We have to remember that these are each ONE person and you are just ONE person. Try to focus in on the positives in your life and on your blessings and the things that bring you joy and stay focused on those things…not what you wish you had or what you think you need to be happy.
  3. Use your gifts to serve others: This is the most profound of all. If you seek to be served by others, you will always be disappointed. If you seek to SERVE others, you will always be fulfilled. Take your focus off of yourself and use your time and talents to serve and care for those around you.

Are you with me? Let’s cut ourselves some slack and realize we will most likely NEVER find that so-called “perfect balance” that we all dream about, so simply do your best to prioritize tasks without elevating this idealistic status. Maybe your goal for the day is to occupy your kids with crafts for an hour while you work out without interruption. Maybe it’s making 3-5 square meals a day with organic fruits and veggies picked straight from your backyard garden. It could even be carefully crafting Pinterest-worthy treats for your kids’ lunches that you will later post on Pinterest because you are that good at balancing time! And if you’re anything like me, your goal is just to make it through the day with minimal breakdowns (from the kids AND myself).

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But just remember that you cannot do EVERYTHING. For this reason alone, “balance” is your own to find. It’s an art, not a science.

Xoxo,

Heidi

Related reading:

I Am (Still) Perfect
#MomLife: 11 Hacks for Getting Fit
I Am (Not) a Pinterest Mom
Love Who You Are


45 Comments

  1. Megan - November 15, 2016

    Heidi, you and your family are so beautiful, genuine and real! That’s so hard to find and it’s so refreshing and appeciated. Hope to meet you all one day! Love you all and thanks for the inspiration <3 <3 <3

  2. Mirella voss - November 15, 2016

    Hi I love your shows and have a question please I live in the uk and suffer with depression and find it hard to lose weight love to know how to lose weight

    • Team Powell - November 15, 2016

      Hi Mirella: You can learn all about Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling program in this post: http://heidipowell.net/9060, and be sure and follow all the links within the post too. And we also recommend you discuss any nutrition and exercise program with your healthcare team first and then follow any modifications they might recommend. You can do this!

  3. Matthew Gough - October 30, 2016

    Heidi, You do such an amazing job balancing your life and being a great mom! You are such a great example to your children and are teaching them great values. I love your message of being “perfectly imperfect” and i wish more people would take it to heart. My wife and I love seeing your posts. They are so motivating and real! I remember when I met you more than 6 years ago now. It’s amazing where life has taken you since then.

  4. Randi blackham - October 30, 2016

    Thank you for being a real light in the social Media realm. It is so easy to scroll through posts and think nobody else struggles. When in fact we all do. If we could all love ourselves for what we are be greatful for our gifts and talents like you demonstrate awesomely I think our world would be better.

  5. Natalia - October 29, 2016

    You are an inspiration!!

  6. Tina - October 29, 2016

    Hi Heidi!
    I follow you and enjoy your blogs because I think you’re “real” – you share your faults and make us all realize that we are all the same regardless of our roles in the world, that it’s in to be perfectly imperfect!!

  7. Kiah - October 29, 2016

    I love your honesty and the way you look at life. No one is perfect and us moms do our best and that’s enough. I have a brother that is Down’s syndrome and he is my superhero. I always wish I could see the world through his eyes. No one does any wrong and everyone is kind, he’s always happy and loves everyone, he doesn’t know what hate is, he doesn’t know how to be mean or put people down. He is simply amazing!

  8. Lisa Snead - October 29, 2016

    Good morning, Heidi! I want you to know that I think you are amazing! I am impressed and inspired by the way you manage to balance family time with work and fitness. Your children are included in every aspect of your life and they appear to be little fitness buffs in the making. And the way you and Chris Powell include your ex-husband as part of your family and manage to be friends is the absolute best thing for your children. I am in awe! You are a true inspiration to me!!

  9. Shiloh - October 29, 2016

    Thanks for this! I am trying to manage a profession and compete- havent even added kids to the mix yet and I already struggle with balance at times and wonder how it would work when I do have kids

  10. Rachel levitre - October 29, 2016

    This is something I need to work on. In a world of social media, where we typically put our best for forward so as not to be a downer, it makes others lives look so perfect, we question ourselves.

    Sometimes I’m a damn good moll, sometimes I’m an okay mom. All the time I’m human. Work in progress.

  11. Christina - October 28, 2016

    You guys are such an amazing family and such an inspiration. So glad to see you being so real and relatable!

  12. Kate ellmer - October 28, 2016

    Thanks for keeping it “real”, you’re proof that women today can have it all – family, careers, and FUN!

  13. Sheridan Johnson - October 28, 2016

    Thank you for posting this!! Family balance is so important to us as we are fostering to adopt and our growing family is going from 4 to 7, this coming Monday!! I can’t wait to follow more of your journey ♡♡♡

  14. Lindsay - October 28, 2016

    Hi Heidi.
    Thanks for posting this. Balance is something I’m really struggling with right now since i just had a baby and am also trying to homeschool my oldest. I realized I don’t ever schedule in time to take care of myself because I get too busy trying to fulfill all of my other duties. I do need to re discover my talents and start using them again so inreallt appreciate the advice on that. Thank you!

  15. Brittney Onesti - October 28, 2016

    #PowellOrbitBabyGiveaway

    Heidi,

    You make imperfect balance of life look amazing! I love how real you are and how you share your life with the rest of the world.

    Much love,
    Brittney Onesti

  16. careyann harmon - October 28, 2016

    Hello, I love this post!! I’m a mama to 5, and life gets crazy at times!! you have some good tips.. thank you!

  17. Carmel - October 28, 2016

    Heidi one of my favorite things about you is you are SO relatable. You are not afraid to show us how just how imperfectly perfect you are. I love that you post about your everyday normal crazy life. ♡♡♡

  18. Jessica Syring - October 28, 2016

    This is sooo spot on! As a mother of 4, and a bonus daughter I constantly feel like I am failing at life!! I have really been struggling with finding what I’m ” good ” at. How do you discover what your gift is? It really is a difficult question… I feel like a Jack of all trades, but expert at none. Thanks for being so real, and showing us all that even someone who appears flawless is flawsome like the rest of us!!

  19. Megan Dudley - October 28, 2016

    I love you and the way you run your blended family! You are a true inspiration 🙂

  20. Amanda - October 28, 2016

    Thank you for answering that question. It is one that I ask everyday. Doesn’t feel like there is enough hours in a day sometimes.

  21. Brittany - October 28, 2016

    Something I need to remind myself about. Trying to balance every day and some times not even understanding your own emotions….. How can I possibly comprehend a 2 year old emotion. Cut us both some slack and try to enjoy the life now and seek put ways to pursue forgotten dreams

  22. Jenni Price - October 28, 2016

    Browsing your blog, and was really inspired by this post. Just what I needed to hear today! Thank you for spilling your heart. Love you guys!

  23. Elizabeth Graham - October 28, 2016

    I love how inspirational this post is! I also love that you admittedly state that you are not perfect! It makes me feel so much better about myself!

  24. Shannon Brancaccio - October 28, 2016

    Heidi! You are a true inspiration to mom’s raising multiples. I’M trying so hard to eat right and loose weight. I see that you can juggle a career, children and a healthy lifestyle let’s me know that I can do it too.

  25. Amber kernell - October 28, 2016

    I love your inspiration and motivation!! I hope I can keep mine going once little man is born!

  26. Rachel ferguson - October 28, 2016

    You are such an inspiration. My husband and i always watch your shows and look at your posts as motivation. We have always had to work hard to stay fit and also have a busy family with 3 boys. It’s not always easy , but you guys are truly inspirational and show us it can work.

  27. Ashley - October 28, 2016

    I’ve followed you for years- although I’ve never commented on your posts! You are just ‘normal’ mama living life and making dreams a reality! I love that you don’t always post about the ‘perfects’- instead you post truth! It’s inspiring!

  28. Veronica - October 28, 2016

    It’s great to follow a mom that has a perfect balance of wife, mom, career woman and perfect health and fitness! I have never been one to read blogs and that’s just me being honest, but I will start reading yours cause I can relate with you and your life. I struggle in balancing the things I love so honestly , working out has taken a back seat and I really don’t like it! We currently have a surrogate and my husband and I are expecting our first baby together in February?It’s a Girl and we are so excited! I have 3 older children all teens from my first marriage who can’t wait for baby Espn to arrive! I had many medical issues and surgeries that unfortunately caused me to be unable to carry a pregnancy full term so surrogacy was our only option. Our baby is 100% all us (my hubby and I.. no donors) it has been an emotional and financial rollercoaster but at the end we know she will be all worth it! God bless you and your family and I just want to say that what you are doing is wonderful! Ultimately even if I don’t win the stroller I am so excited to go for walks with the baby daily when she arrives ! ?

  29. Leticia Hinojosa - October 28, 2016

    I enjoyed this post. Thanks for speaking so openly.

  30. Rebekah Tripp - October 28, 2016

    Dear Heidi, I have loved reading this blog post. I am expecting my 3rd child and am getting nervous on how I’m going to balance my 8 and 6 year old girls plus a baby. You have some amazing ways on here thank you for sharing your life and helping so many people!!

  31. Ashleigh - October 4, 2016

    Hi Heidi. I really enjoy the information I am learning from you. I work in the middle of the night and because of my daytime schedule with my children and babysitting my neice I only sleep 2-3 hours most night. This obviously isn’t ideal but not something I can change right now. I enjoy working out and try my best to eat healthy. I know my body is holding onto excess fat because the stress I have put on it with my lack of sleep. I am just wondering if you have any suggestions on what and how much I should eat while I work at night. Or any other recommendations on how to stay healthy in my situation

  32. Linda Muhlenfeld - September 27, 2016

    I love you two, l wish I could be fit like you but I have sooner handicapped left over by a horseback riding accident 15 years ago. Would you ever consider training me? I want to be strong and have a flat stomach, but my insufficiency plays a big roll in how I work out, it is a challenge for trainers.

    I would be honored to have you train me to make me the best l can be.

    Linda

    • Team Powell - September 27, 2016

      Hi Linda: Chris and Heidi truly wish they could train everyone, but they’re not taking on clients at this time. But you can achieve your transformation goals through their carb cycling program, and you can learn about it in this post: http://heidipowell.net/9060. And be sure and follow all the links within the post too. It’s also important to discuss any nutrition and exercise program with your healthcare team first and then follow any modifications they recommend for your health issues. You can do this!

  33. stephanie - September 27, 2016

    Hi! I’ve joined the Americas Fittest Couple Chalenge. There is a group on Facebook where we can support each other. The thing is…. there’s a Heidi Lane Powell who is giving info an answering questions. I just want to make sure that’s really her (or her team) giving info. I’m not convinced it is….

  34. Cindy - September 27, 2016

    Hi Heidi. Most times, balance for me is doubling up my workouts a couple of days a week. I am wondering since i am doing extreme transformation, is this appropriate? I need 7 hrs of cardio per week. Two of the days i do double cardio workouts. Can i compress my workout days to count towards my 7 hrs for the week on the program?? Will it still work?? Instead of doing 5 days of 1 hr/day and day before reset doing 2 hrs??? Could i do two days with double cardio and then 5 days with 1 hr cardio? Im very close to maintenance and im thinking of mixing it up once im there. Thanks!!

    • Team Powell - September 27, 2016

      Hi Cindy: Yes, if this what works for you, then it’s totally okay! And congratulations on getting close to maintenance – that’s awesome!

  35. Kristin - September 26, 2016

    What a beautifully descriptive reality of all of us moms (and dads) out there! It can be too easy to assume TV personalities have it all together with their perfect hair, teeth, body, energy, family life, income, etc. but the truth is we are ALL a work in progress and we must BATHE in grace daily??

  36. Michael Anthony - September 26, 2016

    Dear Heidi,

    I think God Created Mothers to be Awesome! He created Women to be able to Multitask much better than us Men! If Men had to do what Women do in keeping balance in the home and work our Minds would be fried real quick. Just think of the Movie “Mr. Mom” with Michael Keaton.

    I also would like to say I really envy what you have been blessed with: a Good Spouse and Beautiful Family! When I was growing up I wrote down at age 12 that I wanted to Marry a Good Woman, have some children and a Home in the Country!

    Sadly, I am divorced twice with no Children: my first ex wife had a Miscarriage. So, technically I am a Father; but at close to 50 years old now that Dream is gone!

    Keep doing the wonderful job that you do, Heidi with your Family! I hope your Husband truly blesses with much Care, Affection, Love, Understanding, etc : because he is one very Blessed guy! There are tons of men in this country who would kill to be in his situation! Some of us had Life give us a Beating!

    I am Saved, a Believer, in Christ Jesus the Lord My Savior: so I am Truly Blessed despite all the Rest; but without a Doubt a Man to have a Good Wife and Children is what I believe Completes the Circle that God the Father intended for the World to be!

    In His Love and Grace, a Fan of you and your family who also Glorify the Lord;
    Michael Anthony

  37. Amiee Meier - September 26, 2016

    Thank you SO much for this post! I think the Lord knew I really needed to read it this morning. Thanks for being so real and honest. Thankful for wonderful, strong, real and inspiring women like you. ❤️??

  38. Kally C. - September 26, 2016

    I love this SO much! You are so right and the more you compare the harder you are on yourself! Meaning me, I am so hard on myself when I follow and see what people I know are doing or “seem” to be doing better then me! I love following your blog, you make me smile and I love all your tips and how real you are! Keep it up! ?

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