“Getting in balance is not so much about adopting new strategies to change your behaviors, as it is about realigning yourself in all of your thoughts so as to create a balance between what you desire and how you conduct your life on a daily basis.”Wayne Dyer
Life is a continual balancing act. Each day there are choices to make. Which shoes are you going to wear today? The right question should be, how many shoes can I wear today.
You know I thought life would slow down as I have aged. In some ways it has. I am certainly not responsible for as much as before, but there are decisions I must make each day. There are other people I must include in those decisions, and I have to decide which is most important.
Looking back I know I had so many responsibilities, raising two children as a single parent, working full time, going to college part time and all the other life experiences that were so important and necessary. Now I wonder how I did all of it.
I look at my children and wonder how they are doing it today. Life is even more complicated now than it was then. Everything moves faster, and there are more pressures and stress. Maybe that is why I feel like my life has not slowed down as I anticipated it would.
Finding balance is an ongoing process, and it is also always in flux. Each day of your life will be different. There will be various activities with different people involved. There will be highs and lows and the decision of what is the most important thing to do each day
Next week, it will likely be different. Sure, there will be some activities that will be pretty constant, but they may not be precisely the same. Next month, the same thing will happen.
So, to find and maintain balance in your life, you must be able to be flexible and switch gears, quickly, and continually…day in, day out, and onward.
But what is balance? What do you consider to be a balanced life, day, or week? Do you know? It will be different for each of us, which makes total sense. If you were to ask twelve people what a balanced life is, you would receive twelve different answers.
Thinking about balance is essential. How would you decide? I think a good exercise would be to break down the different parts of your life; write them down. What would they be?
I am sure you would include Work, Family, Health, Money, Your Home, Down Time. Each one of those areas can be analyzed as well. Family would be one. You can break that down into your significant other, your children and your parents and siblings, etc. Don’t forget your self in that equation either. There are other considerations as well, such as Personal and Professional Growth or Religion.
How much of your time can you allocate to each one of those areas? How many hours do you work each week? What responsibilities do you have at home? Do you have more than one job? Do you have help from someone who shares some of these responsibilities?
When you break down all the areas of your life and the time you have each day, each week and each month, do you think your life is in balance? If you can answer yes, congratulations, you are doing the right things.
Most of us would probably answer, no. It can be a harsh reality when you slow down enough to look at how you are living your life. It may be on point, or it may be totally out of whack, or it is somewhere in between. Most of us are probably in the in-between area.
The first thing most people will tell you is that you have to set some goals. There always has to be goals, and that is a good thing. Our goals bring some needed structure, something on which we can focus. Without them, we make our life more prone to being out of balance.
What are the right goals? The problematic part of goal setting is making our goals realistic. I would say to focus on the most critical aspects of your life first, such as work because that provides you financially and your family because they provide for you emotionally and are your support. Once you set your goals, focus on them, and make it your priority to get them done.
You should have short and long term goals. Your short term goals will help support the ability to obtain your long term goals.
Your goals should be very specific, not vague. You should be able to break your goals down into easy to do mini-goals. They should be realistic and achievable.
When you are planning a schedule for each day, the same thing applies. Your schedule has to be realistic and attainable. If you are always stressed out because you cannot keep up, it is time to make some changes.
If you are in a relationship and have children, it is necessary to have the support of your spouse/partner. They are an integral part of the whole equation. Each has to support the other and have the ability to interact with each other. The most important part of this relationship is the ebb and flow of your interaction. Do you support one another at any given time. Remember that is the most crucial part of finding balance. Your life is always in flux, and it will change each day, sometimes moment to moment. You have to have the adaptability to change as well to maintain your balance.
Simplify. When you are looking at your life’s plan and trying to establish short and long term goals to bring everything into balance, look for ways to simplify. What is 100% necessary and what isn’t? If something is not required, and it does not add much value, eliminate it. Is there a better way of doing something? Is there someone else who can do it for you? Can you afford to pay to have something done, so you do not have to do it?
You will always have many shoes to wear in life. Sometimes, they will be work shoes, and sometimes they will be the shoes you wear for fun. Sometimes, no shoes at all.
Life is a moving event. It is always in flux. Something or someone will change. You will lose something, and something else will take its place. Hold on and enjoy the ride.
Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.Thomas Merton
As always, thank you for reading my blog. Be happy today.