sophia bush balance sheet the chalkboard mag invisible children

Take a deep breath, let it out, and repeat after Sophia: “Everyone around me is fighting some sort of battle, and deserves a break. Everyone including me.” Sigh…

We may not be talking about the kind of “break” that involves faraway destinations, exotic cocktails, and a month away from work (although we all need that from time to time as well) but the breaks we are talking about are just as valuable when it comes to finding balance in life. The balanced life so many of us are teetering and tottering our way toward – between the joys and pressures of work and family, friendship and solitude, boundless information and our next tweet – is hard to define, but so dependent upon the little breaks Sophia details below.

The kind of breaks that signify a little grace, a second glance at the human in front of you, a softened edge to your own hard-lined calendar…possibly even a downshift from go-go-go mode to go-on-ahead-of-me-in-line mode. As we drive hard through all the opportunities of our age, or through the many struggles common to it, take note of just how uplifting the little breaks we give ourselves and others can be.

Here are a few of the details that keep Sophia sane through tapings, fittings, travels, and other realities of her well-balanced life…

Daily necessity for sanity:

Coffee. And petting my dogs.

When I feel overwhelmed I...

If I can get a minute alone, I’ll close my eyes and practice my TM mantra. If I’m in a hectic place, like on set,  I’ll walk to make myself a cup of coffee. Something about it, maybe the pouring and the stirring, really forces me to focus and slow down. 

Best tactic for staying calm under fire:

I try to remind myself that everyone is fighting some sort of battle, and deserves a break. Everyone including me. 

Fave way to detox:

I try to do a week of Panchakarma with an ayurvedic doctor once a year.

My favorite way to take a break is to...

I love to sleep. I love it so much. I don’t get to do it enough, so if I can take a nap, that’s it.

Fave way to replenish energy:

I keep chlorophyll and astragalus root tinctures in my purse, and add them to water during the day.

How I find rest in a chaotic schedule:

I’m really working on this one.

Circumstances under which I turn off my phone:

When I am on an airplane. Not because it’s dangerous to leave it on – so glad that’s been proven – but because it’s a waste of battery.

Stress-busting ritual:


Monthly must for self-care:

I take an inventory of self. Am I being courageous enough to be vulnerable? Am I taking care of myself the way I care for others?

Thing that always brings me back to center:

My girlfriends. Thank Apple for FaceTime, because while I’m on location filming Chicago PD, seeing their faces keeps me sane.

Where I find sanctuary:

Having a good meal with good friends. And meditating.

My curfew:

Whenever I’m too tired to dance, I know it’s bedtime.

Mantra for slowing down:

There is only this minute. I cannot be anywhere else. I cannot be doing any more. I can only give my best to this moment and the people around me.

Best piece of advice ever received on balance:

“Health is everything.” – @azitaloves

Best resources on the topic:

Daring Greatly by Brené Brown. 

Biggest inspirations:

Anyone who is really following their truth inspires me. And my mother of course.

Read more from Sophia Bush this month on The Chalkboard Mag! Get inspired for a great summer with her Letter From Our Guest Editor here and watch for more all month with TCM.

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  1. the universe works in mysterious ways. and always gives you just what you need, when you need it. i was JUST having a conversation with a friend this weekend, asking what it’s like to be vulnerable with yourself. it is something i am aware i need to work on. and then sophia mentions this book, daring greatly. i can say that i recognize a sign when i am given one. (universe, i hear you!) and i will be buying this book. amazing. thank you!

    • Wow – so happy to hear it reached you at just the right time, JV!

      The Chalkboard | 06.10.2014 | Reply
  2. I continue to be inspired by strong, empowered women who find a balance between hard work and self-care. She has such a sweet, soft spirit but has such deep passions as well. I love that. Thank you for this great post.. I needed this little bits of wisdom today. Love and light to all of the goddesses out there! -Bailey Mikell, tobeherown.com

    Bailey Mikell | 06.09.2014 | Reply
    • Agreed, Bailey…we are so inspired by strong, passionate, kind women. More to come from Sophia all month long!

      The Chalkboard | 06.10.2014 | Reply
  3. Love her comment: “Everyone around me is fighting some sort of battle, and deserves a break. Everyone including me.”
    Read that now while studying for exams under a mountain of other burdens and realized it’s my battle and my break will come, I just gotta realize I deserve one too! Inspired and motivated! Can’t wait for more Sophia inspiration..

    Leigh Grindley-Ferris | 06.12.2014 | Reply
    • Such a great mantra. We hope you ace all your exams with grace to boot, Leigh!

      The Chalkboard | 06.12.2014 | Reply
  4. I truly appreciated the way this post started, “TAKE A DEEP BREATH, let it out, and repeat after Sophia: “Everyone around me is fighting some sort of battle, and deserves a break. Everyone including me.” Sigh….” I did exactly that and was able to come back down to earth from this crazy hectic day at work. Empowered women, who embrace and spread empathy for others, inspire me. It’s far too often we all think more about ourselves and what we’re going through to take a moment and think, others are going through their own struggles. Maybe they need this small moment too. Her mantra for slowing down really spoke to me – that I am doing what I can in this moment. Thank you for the wonderful post Sophia Bush & Chalkboard Mag.

    Lauren | 06.12.2014 | Reply
    • So very well said, Lauren. Thank you for reading, and thank you for sharing!

      The Chalkboard | 06.12.2014 | Reply
  5. Wow, I just love this. Amazing tips, big thanks to Sophia Bush and The Chalkboard Mag!

    Lara | 06.12.2014 | Reply
  6. Ugh, the typos…… “CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH I TURN OFF YOUR PHONE” ……. Why would she turn off my phone?

    Amanda | 08.25.2014 | Reply
    • Good catch, Amanda – no clue why Sophia would turn off your phone! Fixed.

      The Chalkboard | 08.26.2014 | Reply

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