Maggie Perotin - Achieving Balance

Struggling With Juggling It All? Achieving Balance Is Possible!

Finding balance in modern day living is certainly not easy, especially as a woman.

Can you really juggle a having a job, a business, study for a degree, have a social life and still have time for your own self-care and family without risking burnout?

Is it possible to have so much on the go and still enjoy your life?

In this podcast episode, we share with you an interview with Business and Leadership Coach, Maggie Perotin who does just that.

Maggie's live chat with Clarity Junction host, Gillian Duncan, was recorded during an interview in the Midlife Empowerment for Women Facebook group, where she shares how she manages to juggle everything without the struggle, and with an element of balance that allows her to achieve her ambitions while still loving life and being there for her family.


Meet Maggie

Maggie has over 13 years of coaching and leadership experience in the corporate world and uses this experience, along with the knowledge from many qualifications, to help her clients achieve the results they dream of.

Through her 'Dream-Plan-Do' coaching model, Maggie helps her clients reach their full potential and get results while maintaining balance in life.

Maggie Perotin - Achieving Balance Is Possible

Maggie is a Mom in a blended family with 4 kids and loves spending time with them outdoors. She also enjoys travelling and healthy cooking.

How to Contact Maggie



Maggie, life, juggling, business, balance, managed, realise, care, diary, stress, happen, important, family, kids, day, situation, find, proactive, people, routines


Gillian Duncan, Maggie Perotin

Gillian Duncan  00:00

Hello and welcome to the Clarity Junction podcast. Today, I would like to share with you one of the live interviews taken from the Clarity Junction's Midlife Empowerment for Women Facebook group. In this episode, I am chatting with Business and Leadership Coach, Maggie Perotin, discussing how we, as women tend to be struggling with juggling so many things in our lives all at once. As a mom working full time in the corporate world, while running her business and studying for an MBA, Maggie shares how she manages to keep on top of her tasks, and still has time to enjoy her life and her family. So, keep listening to discover Maggie's tips for achieving balance in life. My name is Gillian Duncan, Postive Life and Wellbeing Coach, inspiring women to live the life they truly want and I am delighted that you're here with me today.  Hello everybody here in the Midlife Empowerment for Women group on Facebook. I am absolutely delighted to be joined today by Maggie Perotin, and we are going to be, will be chatting about struggling with juggling everything that we have in life. And let's face it, life is so busy for us all. And, you know, we have so many things up in the air all at once. And we get to that point where, you know, we, we're just so overwhelmed or frustrated or tired and exhausted, and we just, we just don't know how we can cope with everything. We have to just do, you know, so much in our lives. So, you know, we're here today to have a wee chat about how we can regain that balance and how we can get control back on our lives and, you know, find out if there's anything that we can, we can move or change, and what actions that we can take in order to have that balance and find some calmness and peace in our lives rather than overwhelmed and frustrated. So, I'm delighted to be joined, as I say, by Maggie today. So, thank you so much for joining me.

Maggie Perotin  02:12

Thank you, Gillian. My pleasure. Welcome, everybody. And I really appreciate you inviting me and asking to talking about it, because that's definitely a topic that's dear to my heart.

Gillian Duncan  02:25

Absolutely. Now, I've known you for a while Maggie, and every time we chat about things and every time I'm chatting about different coaching elements, you always seems so remarkably calm and composed with everything that goes on in your life and I know that you're a mom, and I know that you have an extremely successful business. So, I'm looking from the outside going, looking at you thinking, 'How does she do that? You know, how can she always look so immaculate and beautiful and have these wonderful trips with the family and be able to run a business at the same time?', so I'm so excited to be able to, to find out more about how you do this. But first, before we, before we do that, I'd love you to just come and introduce yourself, and I mentioned that you have a business and you have a family, but if you'd like to sort of, share who 'Maggie' is with everyone.

Maggie Perotin  03:19

Okay. All right. Thank you, Gillian. Well, I don't wear makeup all the time. So, just for the record. I just put it on for special occasion and today's a special occasion and it didn't take me too long. It's a quick thing, okay. So just, I am not a big makeup person, so, yes, I'll wear it from time to time, but not all the time. Not definitely day to day. So, thank you, Gillian, again, my name is Maggie Perotin. I'm a Business and Leadership Coach. So, I coach women entrepreneurs how to grow successful businesses without overwhelm. Without struggling because I think you know, we have that concept that yes, we juggle a lot of things and it has to be a struggle. It doesn't, it doesn't have to be a struggle, we can be more balanced and still lead a happier life, but also run a lot of different things and so on. I live in Canada, so I'm a subject of the Queen as well, as well as the UK. And, you know, yes, you're right, like we have a lot of things, myself, I have a lot of things going on, you know, I still have my corporate job, so my business right now, I'm running it part time. I do an online Executive MBA course, as you said, I have a family with younger kids. My youngest is almost six. So, they're not toddlers but still younger kids. But balance or, or you know, making sure that we focus on the things that are important, is dear to me. Because I was there a few years back. I was there when I was running a lot of things to the point where I almost burned out. And that led me to that, you know, corner moment saying like, this is crazy, I can't go on like this, I need to change something. And I did. And when I changed that and started introducing techniques or tools and systems that I do now, it changed completely my life, it allowed me to do much more to what I was doing before, with you know, less stress. Life is always stressful, there's always something, but with less stress, more calm and really, you know, ultimately more happy.

Gillian Duncan  05:36

Wow. So, I'm, I am, I'm interested and I'm sure everybody's interested, in the tweaks that you made to your life. So, first off is there anything in particular that, sort of, made you stop. Was there anything that happened or anything that you were particularly juggling with that made you stop and think, 'Actually, I can't really keep all this up in the air?'

Maggie Perotin  05:59

Yes, it was, it was in my corporate job. So, my corporate job is pretty demanding. A couple of years ago, I was in a managerial position, now I am a director, but I was a manager then, and we had a lot of new clients coming in and there were huge clients. We had a lot of work, and the company decided not to add any resources. So, those of us who were there, were already busy with our day to day, had to, you know, onboard those clients, and then set up everything that we needed to set up. And so, what happened was, we were working nonstop, like nonstop for a week at a time. No weekends, nothing. But at the same time, not seeing the light in the tunnel. Like, we felt like we were set up to fail. And, you know, I'm a Sagittarius, so I like to be free, in a way, but there was a moment after a couple of months of working nonstop and not really seeing the results, where I said, like, I felt like I was in a cage and I didn't have a way out. And that actually pissed me off. I got angry and said, 'No, this is ridiculous. You know, like, I don't want to feel like I'm a slave. I'm being paid, but I, you know, I don't have time for my kids. I don't have time to do what's important to me. I don't have time for self-care, you know. I'm getting stressed out angry and so on'. And then, so that was the moment, just a moment in time where I said, 'No more. That's it. I'm not going to support that anymore'.

Gillian Duncan  07:30

Yeah, that sounds really full on, actually. It sounds, like, very heavy. I can, I can really imagine where you were, just by the way you described that situation, and I can appreciate that you must have felt really, almost like in a darkened room with no way out and no escape and no windows. I just feel that sort of enclosed feeling when you describe that situation. I know that you have young family, that you've mentioned, and, you know, I remember, my own self, starting a retail business when my babies were very young. So, my boys, my youngest was only one when I opened the premises, the retail premises. And i remember the next few years, very much like that, because we'd hit a recession. So, I had to work every single day. There wasn't enough funds for staff. There wasn't enough funds for the holidays, there wasn't enough for anything. And so my head was down and constantly trying to find a way forward, and like you describing, I felt that there was, there was no light at the end of the tunnel because nothing was getting better. Not in the economy, not, not in the business. And I missed those early days with my kids so much, and I would come home and I would spend as much time as I could with them, and you know, just grab each moment until they went to bed and then I'd stay up working again. And you know that, that whole cycle it's, it's soul destroying. It's destroying for your health. It's it destroys relationships.

Maggie Perotin  09:08


Gillian Duncan  09:09

And, you know, there must be that point where you turn around and say, 'Wait a minute. Just wait a minute. This, this is not the life that I planned. This is not why I've come into this career. This is, this is only one aspect of my entire life. So, you know, this has to stop'.

Maggie Perotin  09:28

Yeah, exactly.

Gillian Duncan  09:29

So, what did you do? What did you do at that point?

Maggie Perotin  09:31

So, what did I do? Well, one of the first things I actually, in all this, I actually bought a high-performance mentorship problem, okay. And it was by, like an American, very successful gentleman who really focus on high performance and I took time, out of my day saying, you know, 'There's things I can't control in my company, but there's things I can control about me, and I can start there and see where it leads me'. And, and you know, the tools that I've learned and so on, of course, I adapted to my situations and so on, but that was the first step that allowed me to really be more selective in the meetings that I attend. And how do I run my days? How do I manage a team? And all that. So, that helped me a lot. And then setting boundaries and realising, 'Okay, my self-care is important because if I don't do it, I am going to burn out and ultimately I want to be able to be there for my family, even for my employees at work and so on. So, by setting those boundaries, I said, 'Okay, I don't care. This is the times I do the things that I want to do'. I started volunteering. That's something I always wanted to do. So, you know, I became a board member on a charity that's local here, and then there are certain things that I started doing. And then it's evolved. Like, you know, establishing certain routines in the morning and in the evening. You know, planning, and especially when I started my business, being strategic about my business on what I work on, and not just busy without necessarily having like an overarching strategy because then we just get busy with things but we're not moving forward because we don't have that direction, that GPS. So, it's been a process and for me, it's always a process because as our situation changes you know, kids who grow up, we take up a new hobby, we change jobs, or again, we start a business and so on, that all that system that we create needs to evolve with our situation. But that's sort of a you know, it's been a journey, it still is but I'm balancing it now. When you establish that foundation, then you just tweak things as your situation changes. Yeah. So, for me listening to you, and maybe from some other people listening to you, I can hear that the pressure has lifted. So I can hear in your voice, and I can see in your face that, you know, that journey happened and it was a really positive step for you, but from listening to you also tell this journey, this story, I also hear that you added more to your plate. So from what I hear, I hear you had, you had a job that was really stressful and was really, sort of, keeping all your time but then you added in another, like, a sort of intensive course. And then you included some voluntary work, and then you managed to squeeze in self-care. I mean, that is, like, crazy. You know, that just seems like you had so much in your plate, but you've added to it. So yeah, explain that one to me. Explain why it works. Why it works, because I, I believe in balance. So I, know we talked about this. I'm a huge nature lover. And maybe that's because I live in Canada, we, I do love nature, I relax there, I drive my inspiration there and so on. And when you look at nature, everything is in balance, right? It's us humans that usually cause that imbalance by our destructive practices, but, but if you, if you take it outside, you know, and in even in a little forest, it's an ecosystem, right? Everything has its place. And if you remove one thing, it affects like a chain reaction of other things, right? If one species disappears, that affects other species, and so on. And we're part of the nature. No matter what we want to think we are. And if you think about our body, how it functions like it's also all in balance, right? Like it's been, whomever created it, whatever you believe, like it's for me, it's amazing. It's inspirational. It's amazing how everything works. So, we need that balance. And I know you know that little hexagon that I created. We have our body, our mind, our soul. Now we have, of course, our business, our job, our relationships, finances. And when one of those things is out of balance, it affects everything. Meaning, if my body's sick, I can't work. I can't take care of my family. It affects my mental health and it will affect my finances, right? Same with my relationships, right? If my relationships whether they're in business, whether they're in a family, whether they're, you know, my heart, if I'm not really feeling myself, it will affect everything else. So, you, we need to create time for things that are important to us, so eliminate anything that's not important. Because, you know, it's fun to watch a movie with family. I watch it. But bingeing on Netflix for a week, five hours a week, is it really that important or five hours a day, right? Is it really that important? So, creating the time for, 'Okay, instead of watching TV, I'm going to take a bath'. Like, self-care doesn't need to be expensive, right? I'm just going to take a bath or read a book or something, something that relaxes me. That's how you, and I don't like to say find, create time for those things. But you do need to eliminate waste, it doesn't mean that oh, you can do all those non value activities and then everything else, there is something that's got to give and when that something is really not important, when you think it through, then it doesn't matter. And then you have time for everything that is really important to you that does create that balance in your life. And you know, it's different for everybody. And also, it means, it doesn't mean that every day I have to have those things in balance. It's just more of a journey, like every week or every month, and also knowing to assessing that situation, right? So if one month we're focusing more on our business because, like you Gillian, right, you have that launch of the membership and, and the site, I'm sure you spend a lot of time creating it. And that's okay. as long as when you're done, you will reassess and say, 'Okay, well now for my balance, I need to take care of myself. So, I'm going to take two days off, and I'm just going to spend time with my family. Right? And that, that's what it is. So, it's not about this perfect, I don't know, counting of time every day, again, it's more of a journey, but being aware of how we're spending the time, where we're spending the time and then, you know, focusing on the things that we need at that very moment that need our attention as one and, and having the schedule routines on a regular day to day, that helps us you know, have energy to do things that we do and rest properly and so on and so forth.

Gillian Duncan  17:05

It is definitely about balance. And from what you described there, I could sense that you're basically describing the fact that you started to squeeze the time differently. So you've, we've all got the certain hours in the day that we have to live, but instead of solely focusing on that stressful situation with your, your work and your career, you started to squeeze in some extra self-care time. And when you did that, the time naturally expanded, and you were able to cope better with the other stressful areas in your life. So, it wasn't all about the focus on that overpowering negative situation you found yourself in but all of a sudden, you know, you were, you had a balance. You know, you had that work that you had to do. You were getting paid to that, that job and that, to go through that role, the job needed to be done, but not at the cost of everything else in your life. So, you managed to again, stop and say, 'Okay, I need to find time for this. I have to find time'. So, you made that small amount of time, which then, you know, as I mentioned, has expanded. And I think what you mentioned about self-care is so important, so true. I like to always think of self-care, not as something that is a treat, or it's something that is a special time, I like to think of it as survival. You know, so rather than being you know, self-care, as you know, I, I need to, you know, put a face mask on or paint my nails, do know something, that is survival. It's survival, because we need to time out. You know, I teach this an awful lot when I coach people on their sleep problems, and people have this whole thought of sleep as something that, you know, 'I'll, I'll catch up at the weekends or you know, it's okay to not get enough sleep during the week and, you know, I'll maybe sleep on my holidays', not realising that they're just putting your body through stress every single day. And that you can't eliminate that until you have got a good sleeping routine. So, yeah, so self-care is survival and if that  is taking time out to, I don't know, put a facemask on or do your nails or whatever, whatever small thing you think of that, it's not. You might not think it's important, but it is because you're breathing, you're relaxing, and you're taking your focus away from all the other stressful elements. And also, you know, when you do something like, I don't know, you might take time to put some makeup on or do your nails, you are actually being more creative. You're thinking about those things. Or if you take time out to go for a walk, you're not only getting that benefit from having that, that healthy exercise, you're also getting fresh here. And also, just like you mentioned as well, we are one with nature, regardless of how you think about or what you believe in spiritually, we have to work alongside nature, our bodies, biologically have to work alongside nature. And I truly believe in that energy. I believe that when we walk in nature, we get the energy from the sea, from the winds, from the sun, from the trees and the plants, and the other animals that we share our environment with. And we pass that energy onto each other. So I feel that that is, again, a really important aspect we must take care of.

Maggie Perotin  20:33

Yeah, you touched on a few very good points there. I just want to, I guess, repeat and maybe expand on it. One is that self-care is necessary for you to be productive, creative and do whatever you want to do in life. It's just like, you know, again, nature and even your garden of flowers, well, if you don't water them, if you don't take care of them, they're going to fall apart, right? If you don't take care of yourself, you will fall apart and then you can't do anything. And sometimes, you know, we think that by working more or staying more, we'll actually do more, we won't because A, if we're sleep deprived and I totally agree with you sleep, it's important you need the minimum sleep every night or most of the nights, you know, things happen, I get it. We're actually, our brain doesn't function well. We're like under the influence of alcohol apparently, and well, all the parents know, that right? We've been through those things, but we can't, so if you, you can be creative so you can actually accomplish much more, much more work in a very short period of time when you are fully rested and so on, because you're creative, because you're more productive than when you are tired, staring in front of your laptop for hours and just feeling overwhelmed because you're just too tired to handle the amount of work you have and so on, and you're wasting a lot of time just staring or keeping busy. Or, you know, having distractions or procrastinating and so on, and that's, you know a lot of things that I see in my clients work and sometimes I help them. And sometimes those are like to start, those sort of little tiny changes. Like, little tiny changes can make a world of difference. And you can't believe it until you try it, but again seeing from me or even again, the clients I start, that I work with, sometimes the first week, the little tiny changes, I suggest to them makes a whole world of difference of how they feel every day, the stress level reduction is one. And so, as you say, it doesn't have to be a lot. You start with a little bit. You set your boundaries, you put little things in here and there and then you expand on it and then you realise that actually that I can accomplish so much more and you can do so much more within the same amount of time. If you think about it, you know, the most successful people, you know, whomever we like, right, whoever’s in our industry or whomever we look up to, they have tonnes of things to do. They sometimes run multiple companies, they have multiple obligations and so on, and they still have time for self-care and so on, but that's what they do. They master that art of focus and balancing things. And they understand the necessity of taking care of yourself.

Gillian Duncan  23:28

Yeah, absolutely. I just want to go back into that topic of, you know, let's just say we're, you know business aside, but we've got everyday tasks that we have to juggle. Okay, so, you know, we have got a list, a to do list. Everybody's got a to do list, we've all got things we must do. And like you were saying, when you're tired, and when you are stressed, or you know, having those those really feelings, you know, the bad feelings, being really oppressed and down and feeling that you can't cope, what tends to happen with that to do list, is that you procrastinate, and you get confused, and you make mistakes. And what happens is we end up having to do things over and over again, or we sit and stare at them, or we don't know where to start. And when you have got the mindset of, 'Well, I've planned this day, I've got these things to do. Yes, it's a lot to do. I will start with you know, the first thing and get that completed, and, and then work through it that way', if you've got that, and then you've got the goal of, 'Well, at this time I do this. That's for me, and it rewards me and I get relaxed and it helps freshen my mind', then it's amazing how that helps to clear your mind, clear your thoughts, clear your feelings in order to tackle the rest of that to do list. And all of a sudden that to do list which felt completely impossible, now let's be realistic about the to do list as well - okay, we can't put a week's worth of work in one day, that's just not going to happen. We have to completely bring in and narrow that to do list down. But let's just say we've got a manageable to do list, then we can then you know, actually get that done, and have that time for ourselves because we are so much quicker. We're on the ball, we're responsive, we're creative, we can find solutions to our problems, we can delegate and that's another really, really good tool to get as well. We don't always have to do everything.

Maggie Perotin  25:43

Yes, yes. And you know, what, like, to tell you the truth I don't like to do lists. My goal is with my clients is to get rid of to do lists and it's more of being proactive and planning. It doesn't mean you don't know what you need to do, you do, but you are planning ahead of time. And it's more of a scheduling things rather than having this never ending list, as you say that just keeps adding and we're just trying to fit things in. Because somebody said, and I don't remember who that was, but somebody said we overestimate what we can do in a day, but we underestimate what we can do in a year and further out. So, that's our natural tendency and you know, looking for me back in time and then looking with with the women that I work with, that's exactly what we think that we can complete this much in a day, and we can't. And what happens is when we don't do that, so we have this to do list and we knock off two things, let's say, out of it in a day, because this happened, and that happened and whatever, then it's another stress point for us, because now we feel bad. 'Oh my god. I had this much. I accomplished this much. I added three things, and it's never ending'. So, it stresses us out. Right? So, eliminating it and using different tools and being more proactive, again, allows us to reduce that stress and the more proactive we are, the less unexpected things happen. They will happen, you know, in our life, in our business, in our job, whatever, things happen, but you can reduce them. If you have right now a lot of life happening to you. That means you're not proactive enough. And if you change that, you see that then you know that the things the life will happen less around you. You'll be more in control. Because as you said, like earlier, that was a good, that was like Stephen Covey, like one of my favourite books ever in personal development is Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. It's amazing. I recommend it. It's light reading, reader. So, what he says is that exactly that, we need to focus on what we can control. And when our circle of control, when we focus on that, it will expand. And we're all able to do more, affect more people, you know, inspire more people, whatever you want to do. If we focus outside, you know, not in our circle of influence, but circle of things that we don't have control, and then that really stresses us out, and our circle of control of our own influence shrinks, and then we become overwhelmed, we burnout, and so on. So, we need to start with what we have control over.

Gillian Duncan  28:38

Absolutely, absolutely. And when you were describing that, I couldn't help but think back to the days when my children were ages with yours. So my kids are now teenagers, but I remember those primary days so well, when they would come home and they'd say 'I need a cake baked by tomorrow', or you know, 'I need a dress up outfit'. And I remember having that but also having, you know, a business, a job, and my own health conditions to manage, you know. I had a lot of things in life going on, and as you say, life happens, we can't avoid that. And certain things get thrown at you, but the way I controlled that, and the way I kept on top of it was, for the majority of things, I had the knowledge of right, 'Christmas is coming up in so many weeks or, you know, so many months. I know that this is going to happen. i know the teachers are going to need gifts or thank you notes or cards. I know that there's going to be a dress up or something else is going to happen. I'm going to have to start writing that in my diary now. I know the end of terms coming up again, there's going to be parties there's going to be this there's that. I'm going to need to buy new school uniform again, schedule that into the diary'. And over the years, I got into a rhythm of in my diary there was that trigger point saying, 'Okay', now we've got Marks and Spencers over here I think you have over in Canada as well. We have Marks and Spencers and it's great for the school kids’ uniforms, and they would do a sale at a certain time every year. And I can order in all my uniforms for the boys all at once. And so, I must make sure I would visit Marks and Spencers before that time, make sure I knew what was going on with the boys. Have them try on some outfits, some shirts and trousers, wherever, I would write down everything that fitted them. I'd then go home and order online because you can't buy it all the shops, they don't have the stock. So, I had two boys, I have to order it all in the shop, online so they've got it, and I'd get it delivered, and then recheck it all again. And that saved me so much time. And that, you know it just, it's just one of the examples that, things that you can do to manage that juggle. So that when something does come in like, 'Oh I need a cake for tomorrow', it's always really good to have a cake mix packet in your cupboard just in case. If you don't have all the ingredients, you know 'cake mix'. You can just bring it out and put it together and they can present their cakes the next day. It's little, little things that you can start doing and thinking ahead to try and put that into your plan so that you're not juggling so much.

Maggie Perotin  31:13

And that's exactly what being proactive means, right? Thinking ahead and planning certain things, because when you have time to plan you save time. When you leave it till the last moment, then you're struggling and then you're at the mercy of stores and, 'Oh, they don't have this size. Now I need to go to another store, I need to figure out something', and so on, right? When you are exactly, when you plan ahead, when you've proactively scheduled it in, it saves a lot of time and a lot of stress as well.

Gillian Duncan  31:38

It's also a good feeling as well. If you're proactive, you, you can go, 'I've done this, this is a big tick. I am calm. I can reward myself now. I can make time for me because I have that extra time now, and it's not a last minute'. Sure, as I said last minute things do happen, but it is a case of being in control of the majority, just like you were saying, those things that you can control, make sure you are, you know, in control of them. Now, I don't know about you, but you have I got loads of planners and diaries. I love my, I just love the paper aspects of it all, and I know a lot of people use scheduling systems online as well. Is there anything that you do in particular to keep all your plans and all your schedules all in, you know, all mapped out?

Maggie Perotin  32:28

You know what, I really, I like a planner too. I have a simple book that serves as my planning tool and journaling. So I use that and just my calendar, my Google Calendar. Those are, that's, nothing else. That's all I use. And but again, I agree that there's people who like more sophisticated online tools and then ultimately, whatever works for you. You know, there isn't one ideal tool. Everybody's different. Everybody likes to organise themselves different. You want the outcome to be proactive, less stress and so on, how you schedule it in, what tool you use, it's like for me personally, I don't have a preference but I do for my scheduling. Yeah, it's paper and calendar.

Gillian Duncan  33:15

Yeah, I'm really old fashioned. I just like that my, my books and I've got, I've got, my wall planner that I have for the family so we can see what they're doing. And I got my big desk diary that everything goes down. And then I've got my Google Calendar as well. Now my Google calendar is brilliant because I can integrate that with everybody else's calendars, and I mean, everybody in my household, and we've done this for quite a while that we've, my husband and I have taken a breakfast meeting once a week and we sit, it doesn't sound very romantic, but we sit over a coffee, over a breakfast, and we go through our calendars and our diaries and schedule everything in. What's happening with you? What's happening with me? What's happening with the kids? And we put that into our physical diaries, so that we've got it, but we'll also put it into our Google calendars. And because we've got them integrated, we can see what's going on with each other. You know, and that means that there's no last minute, 'Oh, my goodness, when's this happening? You know, I've got to take the kids to this bit', or 'This appointment’s happening.  Oh, I didn't know about that'. So, we all know what's, what's going on. And just by taking that time, I've got to be honest, it's made a huge difference in our lives as a family. And it's a nice time just to sit down and see how much you've got. And it's also allowed my husband to see how much I'm doing. And so that he can turn around and say, 'Well, I can do that. I can take that off of you. And I know I've got the time to do that instead of you', and that has made us, as a family, work more as a team. So, you know, lots of people ask that question. How do you manage to fit all in? How do you manage to, to juggle it all? That's how we do it. It's the communication, the, the offset of everything, the whole communication element of it all as well. And as the boys get bigger and they they're older, they're able to take more on themselves as well which, which really does help.

Maggie Perotin  35:13

Yeah, exactly. And that's the thing when you have a support system, whether it's your partner, whether it's you know, parents or friends, communicate, right? Because nobody can do it all alone. Like we're all interconnected in some way. And it's the same with me and my husband, we communicate daily, we work together, you know, we help each other and, you know, running the house, taking care of the kids, and so on. Because as you say, like, it's hard to do at all. And I know that you know, sometimes, yes, you, you, there are situations where you don't have a choice and so on. You know, for us, for example, one of those situations is we're both immigrants in Canada, so we don't have family, right. So our kids are always with us. My sister can drop her, for example, daughter at my parents and you know, she uses that support system when she can. We don't have that, that easy support. Yes, we can hire a nanny and so on and so forth, but it's more planning, more scheduling there's, you know, costs attached to it, and it's not always easy to do that. But you know, you just figure it out, right? So, so that's the thing like, all of us have, or should have, or should build some sort of support system, whatever it looks for us, just to help with certain things.

Gillian Duncan  36:37

Yes, it's so important. I'm like you. I live in the south coast of England with my husband and both our families all live up in Scotland. So, it's a, it's a bit of a long drive to drop the kids off. And so yes, and but 18 months between my two, they were back to back, so it was, it was almost like having twins in a way. So, it was a juggle, and you always had to have eyes in the back of your head. But again, we managed that and the reason how we managed that we were fortunate enough that my husband was able to work from home. So, he didn't, when I was, he started working from home when I was pregnant with my first, just on the off days, because I had a really bad pregnancy. And, you know, I was in and out of hospital more than anything, but he was able to work from home and help me do that. And then eventually, he just, it just became a full-time thing. So that obviously enabled us to have that, that ability to raise the kids and do the business and have work and, you know, do all the rest of it. So, it is about trying to find that path that suits you. And I can hear in my head, all this sort of, you know, voices saying, 'Oh, it's alright for you. You've got that choice. You've got that, you know, ability, you've got a partner, you can work from home', and I can hear all those comments coming in because, yes, sure, you know, we're blessed. We have this, this network and we have this scenario. However, I don't know about you, but my thought is, well, we're all different. And we're all unique. And we all have different circumstances. It's never plain sailing, it might look plain sailing from the outside, but I just described the fact I have a partner and we're away from our own family, so we don't have that support, but he can work from home. But also, I didn't mention before that I suffer from chronic illness. So, a lot of the time my husband was also looking after me as well. That's not easy. And if I'm not well, I can't look after the kids either. So, it's, you know, it's, it's never plain sailing for anyone, but it is about finding our own unique way and path because we all have one. We all can have one.

Maggie Perotin  38:46

I Agree. I Agree. And then you, as you say, like there's many circumstances and sometimes it's, or most of the time our life is, you know, in chapters and there's chapters that are more easier, and you know, things are established, and so on. There's chapters when things happen, right? Whether it's health related, we lose somebody from the family, different things, right? And then, but there's things we have control over where we can influence them and make our life easier in that circumstance, or simpler in that circumstance, you know? Nobody has a perfect live going on entire life. And it might be times where it's good and you're blessed, and you're, you know, lucky or whatever you want to call it, but then there's times that are not so lucky, and they're not so easy, and so on. So, but there's always something, the choices that we make, can always influence right, how, how that chapter in life happens.

Gillian Duncan  39:45

Absolutely. I think you just summed that up remarkably well. I think that you've managed to do so much better than I could have ever thought of doing it. It is really about the choices that we make along that path and on that journey. So, just, I know we could talk about this all day, but just to sum up today, I just wondered if there was anything that you could recommend or, sort of, put an action step in place for today. Anyone listening, just saying what you can do, today, to help control or regain that balance back into your life? What would be your best tip or your advice?

Maggie Perotin  40:26

If we just look today, so I have two things. Something now and something long term, okay? So, something to do now is take short breaks between the tasks. And that short break, I mean, don't look at Facebook. Scrolling on social media is not a break. It still stimulates your brain and doesn't let it help. Even if it's, so between the tasks that you have, if you can take five minute walk, take five minute walk, if it's just a minute of going out, breathing in, that's fine. Or even just closing your eyes, counting down 10 to one, and then relaxing, and then going on to the next thing. What it allows your brain to do is to put in the compartment, whatever you were doing, kind of, regain focus. Like, when you're doing on a calculator, calculations, to do a new one, you got to clear it, right? Because otherwise you're just like, all over the place. So, you're clearing your calculator, and then you can move on to the next task. So, if you can try this today, even if it's two times today, see the difference. And then, if you want to take it further track your time per week. Okay, from the moment you start, to the moment you go to sleep, I know this is more of a more exercise, but that will give you an awareness where you actually have time, but maybe you're wasting it on things that you don't even realise. Because when we are in our routines for our habits, our brain ignores them, because right, we're on autopilot, so our brain doesn't pay attention. That exercise will allow you to regain that awareness and say, 'Hey, I've actually have an hour every day between this and this because I didn't realise I'm just spending it on Facebook. I'm not really doing anything', right? So, then, then you can decide, 'What am I going to do with that hour?' What is important? Maybe it's healthcare, maybe it's, you know, time with your kids, with your spouse, whatever it is.

Gillian Duncan  42:32

That's brilliant advice. Absolutely brilliant, Maggie, thank you. I know that I'm going to have to work a little bit harder on my breaks. I am terrible. I used to set an alarm to go off so that it would, it would remind me to go and move and stop what I'm doing. Quite recently, I found the alarm really annoying and I turned it off. And I have found myself sitting, doing work or being engrossed in something else, or engaged in something else for quite some time without actually moving and, and taking a break from it. So that has reminded me. So, thank you so much for sharing that tip today, I'm really going to get onto that one. And I love that advice about watching the hours that you're spending in the day and really tracking them. Because, you know, I think we all do it, we're all guilty of it, we can just, it's almost like time goes through a sieve and we just, we don't know where it's gone. And we say we don't have enough time yet, there's so many people achieving great and wondrous things in life. How do they do that? Well, if they know where their time goes. So yeah, that's, that's just brilliant. Thank you so much for sharing that. Now Maggie, I know all about you. I know, I know what you do and everything and I know where to find you and I'm part of your Facebook group, but I would love you to share all about yourself and to share where people can find you and connect with you and reach out and get in touch with you.

Maggie Perotin  43:55

Yeah, awesome. So, you know, my business name is 'Stairway to Leadership'. So, I have a website, stairwaytoleadership.com. I'm on Instagram and Facebook as well under that name, Stairway to Leadership. I am part of this group, Maggie Perotin, so you can friend me and send me a message, no problem. And as you said, I do have a group for business women and it's called, for women entrepreneurs, and but again, like I do have even people who are in corporate world and so on, because we do talk about many different things, not just related to entrepreneurship, they can help you with, you know, self-leadership as I call it. We've had that conversation about it, so and it's called Businesswomen With Passion 4 Life. So, that's where you can find me and yeah, I would love to know how my little tips help you. So definitely reach out.

Gillian Duncan  44:49

Absolutely no, I love your group is, as you say, it's not just really for entrepreneurs, because you share so much advice. You go on and you do lots of live chats with the group and lots of question and answering sessions. So, you know, I would really recommend anybody who has that issue of juggling everything in life and that wants to, to move forwards and try to find that path and to go over and check your group out and to join, because it really is a brilliant group, and it's, it's full of remarkable women. So yes, so definitely go over and check that out. And, and yes, you are actually part of the Clarity Junction Membership as well. You have come on board as a guest expert. I'm absolutely delighted that you're with us on this. And, you know, we have to wait until January, in the new year before we will get to see your masterclass, but I am so excited to be able to share that with everybody. But I just wanted to announce that you're one of our guest experts in the membership site. So, thank you so much for being a part of that.

Maggie Perotin  45:51

It's awesome. No, it's my pleasure. It's, I think it's a great, great platform and it will be very helpful to all the members, so thank you Gillian for doing it, and yeah, I'm looking forward, I'm looking forward to exploring it more.

Gillian Duncan  46:03

Oh, thank you so much. And yes, so, if you want to reach out and contact Maggie, you can tag her here in the group. or you can go and contact her through her website or through her Facebook or Instagram pages. And again, she is over in the Clarity Junction Membership platform, and again, everybody can contact Maggie directly through there as well. But thank you so much for joining me today, Maggie, we've had a great chat. I think we could talk all day about this subject. It's just one of those topics that everybody seems to have that issue with juggling with everything. Everything's always up in the air, but here we've really covered a lot of ways in which we can start to bring everything down, start to calm it down and make it more manageable and really look at things from a different perspective. And I love that you've shared that story yourself about those, those times which wasn't so good for you, that, that weren't fantastic for you, but your managed to, to move on from that, and from there your life really, you haven't looked back on it. So, it's just amazing. So, if you can do it, then we can all do it. Yeah, that's it. Well, thank you so much Maggie. I look forward to sharing this this video out to everybody.

Maggie Perotin  47:19

Thank you again and thank you for watching ladies, it has been a pleasure. Thank you.

Gillian Duncan  47:23

That's all for this episode. Many thanks to Maggie Perotin for being a wonderful guest in the Midlife Empowerment for Women Facebook group and I'm delighted to be able to share her interview with you here on the Clarity Junction Podcast.

To find out more about Maggie and the work that she does, then head over to clarityjunction.com/achievingbalance, where you'll find links to her website and Facebook group.

The Midlife Empowerment for Women Facebook group is free to join and host a number of free mini masterclasses and expert interviews on a regular basis. If you would like to meet and share with likeminded women, then we would love to welcome you to the group. You can find the link to the group on the notes for this podcast episode.

Remember to hop over to clarityjunction.com/membership, where you can find out more about our fantastic membership for women who want more from life.

You can also join us on Facebook and Instagram

Thanks for listening. Bye for now and keep being awesome.

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