As a mother of four active children who works out, blogs almost daily, is in a functioning relationship with my spouse, and maintains a sense of humor, I am often asked "How do you do it? How do you do it all? How do you find the balance?" And as a person who listens and reads, I frequently come across people lamenting their own inability to 'find the balance' and their struggle to 'do it all.'
Here's my secret: I figured out that those two things are in direct conflict with one another.
And that's Lesson #1 in Finding the Balance. You are not going to find any sort of balance if you are fixated on doing it all... so stop.
Perfection ≠ Balance is Lesson #2. Whenever you see someone appearing effortlessly and perfectly balanced, understand that there is a whole world "behind the scenes" to which you are most likely not privy.
In 1976, Nadia Comaneci displayed what appeared to be the epitome of effortlessly perfect athletic balance...even being awarded a perfect 10 for several of her performances in the Montreal Olympics...but her LIFE had very little balance. By her own account, it was very stressful and troubling. Let go of perfection...unless maybe you're an obsessed, Olympic-bound athlete (Olympic-bound being the key phrase there). Or Martha Stewart.
Dovetailing in with the first two lessons is Lesson #3 – Achieving balance is often easier with a partner. Buddy up. Relinquish some control. It is really hard to lead a balanced life if you hang on to control-freakisms. Practice a little give and take.
This brings us to an important question... Can you limit your sitting and sleeping to 23 and a half hours per day? (You want to click that link, trust me...Dr. Mike Evans presents a compelling visual lecture). A crucial piece to finding balance and improving your quality of life is getting regular exercise. Move your body! is Lesson #4. The physical, mental and emotional health benefits of simply walking 30 minutes a day...even broken down into shorter snippets of time... are enormous. You could leave the remote across the room and get up from the sofa to change channels, or park at the far end of the parking lot at the mall or grocery store, basically, there are lots of opportunities to add in some walking. You have the time. Priorities, people. I'm telling you, click that link.
In my life, the balance is more of a juggle (love this bit about rubber balls vs. glass balls!)...and quite often is very much an elaborate plate-spinning act. I think sometimes I'm like this guy...
...only with way messier hair and less fancy clothes. My favorite part is in the very beginning when he screws up and just kind of shrugs his shoulders and moves on. Determining when it's important to let go and when it's more prudent to hang on and then going with that decision is, to my mind, the key to finding the balance.
Wishing everyone a blessed and balanced holiday season :)