Use this self assessment to help you think about your own lifestyle and balance, Mark the ones that sound like they are describing you.

 Eating Habits

__ Your diet is high in sugar, snacks, and sodas that results in abrupt highs and lows in your blood sugar levels.

__You frequently use the drive-through at fast-food restaurants and choose foods high in calories and fat, and low in nutrition. The result is elevated cholesterol levels and high blood pressure.

__Often you find yourself eating in unusual places and at irregular times or going long periods without eating and then bingeing.

__You crave large amounts of unhealthy foods (a bag of chips, a box of cookies, or a quart of ice cream).

__You eat while standing, driving, or doing another activity (paying bills, checking email, folding laundry, or even showering).

Proper Rest

__You experience insomnia, either difficulty falling asleep or waking up during sleep.

__You find you are hungry, not sleepy, at bedtime.

__You stay up ridiculously late at night, playing computer games, watching TV, or surfing the Web.

__You engage in evening activities that don’t allow time for you to unwind but actually rev you up and increase your adrenaline levels at bedtime.

Observing Quiet Reflection

__Constant audio stimulation such as TV, MP3 players, computers, phones ringing, clocks chiming, alarms buzzing, traffic, talking, or dog barking.

___You fall asleep with TV, radio, or stereo turned on.

__Constant visual stimulation, lights on all the time and you spend hours in front of computer screens, TV, or video games.

__The hours you spend in front of the computer screen or video games causes headaches, neck and shoulder pain, or wrist and hand pain.

__You sleep with your mobile phone or other electronic device.

Clear Thinking

__You find yourself making lots of mistakes that could or do result in serious consequences.

__You realize that by delaying routine maintenance or appointments, the preventable has now turned into crises (car engine quits from lack of maintenance, a tooth becomes abscessed due to lack of routine dental exams, you contract bronchitis or pneumonia because you never got a flu shot or pneumonia inoculation).

__Worry or a foreboding sense that something bad will happen dominates your thinking.

Sensible Workload

__You work long hours, including many evenings and weekends. Career goals supersede any other aspect of life. You’re proud to be classified as a workaholic.

__You work on projects in your bed or bedroom.

__You set overly ambitious goals, have an unrealistic expectation of how much is too much, and are frequently disappointed when you fail to meet goals.

__ Your frazzled workload does not allow for reasonable time off.

__You have limited time for self-care.

__You always need to say no when a friend or family member asks you for a favor or invites you out. “I am too busy” is your mantra.

__You have no time for relaxing or exercise.

Spiritual Balance

__You have no time set aside for prayer or quiet time.

__You have not attended worship services in months or years, or perhaps have never gotten around to finding a church home.

__You are not sure how to pray or what meditation is.

__You feel no support from family or friends to nurture a spiritual life.

Which of the above areas did you have the most checkmarks?

 “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10 NRSV).

When I finally crashed, I experienced most of the above signs and symptoms. I was no longer able to feel physically, emotionally, spiritually, or mentally healthy. Forced to make changes in my life, I began by turning to God for his answers, healing and  leading. The upcoming posts will include helpful ideas for a more balanced lifestyle.