What is a balanced life?
Can we ever achieve it?
A wise man said to me just recently that a completely balanced life is impossible to achieve, but I believe that we can take steps to make sure that it not completely unbalanced.
A very useful exercise is the “Wheel of Life” where you look at specific areas of your life and rate them accordingly. It is improbable if you joined the numbers on this wheel that you would see a perfectly balanced circle, although it is my belief that if you are aware of deficits, you can do something about improving that area. However one should also consider that balance consists of bringing the head and the heart into alignment.
The biggest challenge for many people is being present. One way to be present is to cut back on extra responsibilities and focus on what is really important to you. Look at your routines and prioritise. Eliminate or minimise what is not that important.
The next challenge is taking care of your body. Got a cold or flu? Then don’t “soldier on” as the ad says. Give yourself some down time or “me time” and consider if you continue to go to work whilst unwell, your presence may be compromising someone else’s health if they have an at risk immune system. Review your diet and lifestyle and choose not to eat highly processed foods and if you have the funds, book yourself in for a regular massage or Reiki to ease any tension stored in the body.
What’s your passion – your heart’s desire? Creativity will help you bring your life back into balance and studies show that regular meditation can increase your creativity whilst at the same time decreasing your stress response.
Another important element to consider in balancing your life is Patience. Life can get busy, there are the demands of work, home children…. the daily commute….
My Reiki practice includes the daily reflection on the precepts…
Just for today, refrain from worry – accept.
Just for today, refrain from anger – accept.
Honour your parents, teachers and elders.
Count your blessings.
Earn your living honestly.
Show gratitude to every living thing.
At times it seems like life is getting overly complicated and what may seem like a counter intuitive strategy, Simplicity is the key to getting back into some semblance of balance. Take a moment, 15 minutes would be ideal, to audit your work, relationships, diet and whatever else seems to be out of kilter.
Could you teach someone else how to manage these areas in a simple way?
For example, do you follow a difficult and time consuming diet/eating plan?
Look at whether you are consuming foods or eating at irregular times that contribute to increased stress levels and weakening your immune system.
Realistically, a work/life balance will fluctuate. There will be ebb and flow in various areas of your life and what works for you in bringing back some balance won’t necessarily work for others, but ultimately to create more balance in your life, you need to go within and reflect upon how much responsibility you will take to overcome these challenges.