Balancing life can be tricky: a high-wire act without a safety net. If you’re seeking a balanced life, what does that mean?
We all have different interpretations, needs and wants. So I’ll address the various elements of life that require balancing and offer tips best for you.
A balanced life
To me, this means we have a handle on life and our hearts and minds are not being pulled too hard in any direction. We are calm, clear and motivated.
The elements in life that require the most balance can be divided into two: internal and external. Often, people focus on one more than the other: external issues such as work and relationships, while paying little attention to what is going on inside. Conversely, you may find you are too introspective and miss out on the experience of living. I created an outline to help you understand the beneficial components at both ends of each spectrum.
Mind: Challenging yourself intellectually vs. creating opportunities for your mind to rest
Heart: Giving love vs. receiving love
Health: Eating, drinking, exercising properly vs. resting/treating yourself to extra yummies
Work: Pushing yourself to achieve goals vs. seeing the bigger picture/enjoying the ride
Social: Satisfying your social desires vs. taking time for yourself
Family: Fulfilling your familial responsibilities vs. creating healthy boundaries
Fun: Allocating time for things you enjoy doing vs. making sure you don’t overdo it
Both ends are positive; but if either is taken to an extreme, they can be detrimental. It’s helpful to check with yourself to see if you feel balanced. If you feel pulled in any one direction, then these steps will help you re-align your:
Acknowledge: Take time to look at your life, your state of mind, and how you’re feeling. Be honest and notice the areas that you’re neglecting.
Redefine: Notice if you’re leaning more toward an internal or external focus, or if there are areas within each category that need to be more balanced.
Set Objectives/Goals: Look at the outline to help you decide what needs balance. Make a list.
Plan Tasks: Make a list of daily, weekly, and monthly tasks to help you achieve each goal. What have you tried in the past? Did it work? If not, what can you do differently?
Reflect: What have you’ve accomplished? How did you stay focused? How did you handle your fears/doubts? How does it feel to know you accomplished the goal in spite of these?
Prepare: What is your inner “stuff” that will try to keep you from sticking to your plan? (ie fears, doubts, negative self talk). Specify what pushes you off track? Make a list.
Empower: How do you douse the self-sabotaging part of yourself? Be kind to yourself.
Connect: Is there a person who can keep you supported, motivated, and focused? I recommend sharing your inner process with someone who can help challenge your inner demons and celebrate your accomplishments.
Commitment:Just like accomplishing any goal in life, it takes time and effort to overcome your habitual patterns and create new ones.
If you stay on track with this process for three whole months, then there is a good chance you’ll create new habits to enjoy a more balanced life going forward.