Balance. It seems to be all the rage right now. Finding that perfect balance. The balance between work and home, the balance between friends and family, the balance between you name it. But when it gets right down to it what does it really mean? One definition of balance is the following “an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady; the stability of one’s mind or feelings”
So how are you feeling today? Do you feel balanced? Try standing on one foot. Hold a chair if you need to. Got it? Ok now think about your day or what you have planned for tomorrow, still feeling even? When we have too much on our plate in one area then things start to get a little uneven and it is hard for us to keep going. This is when we feel stressed and let things slip. Maybe it is a physical stress that we ignore. That little twinge you get when running. Wait too long and you are going to notice it a lot sooner and a lot louder the more you push. The same thing happens in other parts of world. Whenever we feel stressed we compensate. And if we compensate for too long something else will give.
So what do we do about this to keep our balance? Start by saying no. This is likely the hardest thing to do and I am notoriously bad at it. You cannot do everything, nor should you. So make the choice. If you really want to do it say yes, anything else gets a no. Would you rather be around who is 110% engaged and wanting to be somewhere or doing something, or do you want to be with someone who is there because they think they need to be? As I talked about in my last post, time seems to get away on us so use it wisely. Saying no is uncomfortable but good for your peace of mind. It will free up the time for what you really want to be doing or what you really need to get done.
Another key in making sure you are staying healthy, balanced and stress free is sleep. We can push our bodies only for so long on small amounts of sleep and then it gives. It also works the same way for our minds. I know many of us believe that we can ‘survive’ on less than the recommended 8 hours a night, but would we rather survive or thrive? Trust me when I say almost all people are much nicer if they have had a good nights sleep, most of us are a bit bear like when we haven’t had enough. Also remember that we get our deepest and most rejuvenating sleep before midnight so night owls should plan a few early nights to make sure the body is resting up as best as it can.
And a final thought for keeping balanced is making time for yourself. We are usually so worried about keeping our heads above water doing everything else that we leave taking care of us until the very end. The reason it is so key to make time daily for yourself is that it makes you remember what you like to do and reconnects with who you are. Even just a few minutes of quiet time to breathe will help you feel more calm. Take some time each day to do something just for you. Maybe it is a walk around the block, maybe it is preparing your items for work tomorrow the night before so you have time for a coffee or tea in the morning. It doesn’t have to be long or exciting, it just has to be something you choose for yourself that makes you feel better about the day and keeps you balanced.