One Example of Finding Balance
In your own life, bringing balance can translate to a variety of things. For instance, if you haven’t been working out, your longterm goal might be to get into shape; but perhaps it would be more useful to say to yourself that you are going to try to find a way to live that allows you to maintain your physical well-being. Short term, you might think about starting slowly, in manageable ways that you can work into your life and gradually, as you get stronger, expand. Instead of saying that you’re going to the gym everyday this week (which might be unrealistic and also leave you so sore and overworked that you won’t go back for months; and if you don’t go, you’ll beat up on yourself and that will be the end of any potential sense of balance), think about what you can realistically expect of yourself and attempt to figure out how you can actually get yourself to follow through.
For instance, it might be more realistic to start with a 30 minute walk two times this week. Or even, if it’s not too far away, simply walk to the gym and back. Yes, really! Once you see how you’re feeling, then you can set up another goal – but it needs to be one that you can accomplish and fit into your schedule and your lifestyle. The same is true for any other goal, whether it’s to lose weight, change careers, find a life partner, start a long-delayed project…really, anything you want to do.
Balance Includes Failures, Too.
Remember that both accomplishments and failures are part of balance. Most of us have plenty of both already in our lives, but we may not always pay equal attention to both. If you are someone who focuses on your failures, try to notice small moments of success. See what that feels like. See if you can figure out what you’re afraid of, why you have to focus on the negative instead of the positive. But don’t beat up on yourself if you can’t stay there. It’s normal to fall out of that awareness back into more familiar thoughts. Just go back to the positive when you can. That’s balance.
The same is of course true if you always focus on your successes. It’s great to be proud of yourself!! But maybe try for a moment or two to pay attention to any failures you may have had in the last couple of days. You don’t need to stay there long. Just recognizing that they’re there will help you be more balanced!
Whether you’re heading back to work or school, sending your kids off to a new adventure, changing jobs, getting married or divorced, moving to a new city, or just living life as usual, remember that you are always in transition. The trick to living a balanced life is, (to quote from Mindy Bacharach), to always keep in mind that “Balance is the process of holding something(s) steady during change.”