What do a balance-beam, a see-saw, a set of scales and a person’s life have in common? a search for balance.
In the modern day and age, there are so many factors vying for our attention and for our time. As women, our role in society has progressed. Where once the men were the bread winners and women primarily looked after the house and kids, these days women are also having a focus on their careers. This is amazing, but it can also present it’s own challenges. How does one juggle training, kids, domestic duties, a career, study, family, friends, exercise, appointments and potentially a significant other without burning out? you need to find a balance.
Factors are like ingredients to a meal. They are all of the things that when mixed together can either create something delicious that gets the whole family talking or the kind of meal you want to scrape under the table and hope your family pet will eat it without your parents noticing. It’s also like a set of scales because if you have an equal amount of weight on both sides then you will find an equilibrium or balance. If one side is off just a little? you will lose that balance.
Some of these factors we can control and some we cannot.
A list of things we cannot control:
- The weather – funnily enough, people love to complain about the weather but as someone wise once said to me ‘weather is weather’.
- Time-in the day, in a month, in a year, in a decade etc. No matter what you do with your time or how you feel, the time will still pass regardless.
- Other people- whilst you can try to convince people of certain things, you cannot control them.
- Ageing-to a degree, there are changes in our bodies that we cannot prevent from happening
A list of things we can control:
- Our attitude-in my opinion, this is number one. Attitude is everything! our mind is our most powerful weapon and our wildest resource.
- What we do with our time-PRIORITISE.
- Our goals-What we want to achieve and most importantly, the how.
- Compliance to advice- advice is only as helpful as you choose to follow and adhere to.
- Ageing-there are factors to ageing like looking after your health that can slow age-related changes. I call this ‘healthy ageing’.
Addressing these factors
If we address the factors that we can control early on then we can prevent long-term issues. If we do not then we risk long-term health issues or total burn out. A common life issue is when people “burn the candle at both ends” which means they are trying to do everything and just end up totally exhausted, run down, sick, injured, unhappy or a combination of all of these. This is why it is so important to identify these factors and address them NOW.
Prioritising is a word I use a lot. This is because, despite addressing what we can control, there are still a lot of factors competing for our time! How does one prioritise though? everything is important!
While this is true, in certain phases of your life some factors will be more important than others. This is where goal setting can be really helpful. You need to know what you want most of all and work from there.
Every single human being is different and therefore there is no single recipe or size that fits all. Just because something worked for your friend, does not mean it will work for you. By sitting down and working out your goals, identifying what factors are vying for your time and how you can address them, you are well on your way to finding that balance point.
Removing negative influences
Upon deep reflection, there are going to be factors that influence us negatively and do not serve us well for finding a balance. Often these are the ones that can bring us great stress. Stress can waste our time, often keeping us very busy doing nothing and steals our joy. Sometimes, as harsh as it may seem, you can either address these problems and work out ways to reduce their impact or remove them.
Drawing parallels to my life
I love my job, I am very passionate about helping other people. However I learned quite young that I cannot help others if I do not look after myself. I do not live to work. I want a balance and I am so determined to do so.
Success to me is that work-life balance. I don’t love that term as my work is a part of my life not separate to. So I guess I’m after a nice balance with all my factors which includes my work, my boyfriend, my family, my friends, seeking help when required from other professionals, eating nutritious food to keep my mind and body thriving and keeping my own body moving. If I can balance all of this then I feel more healthy.
Riding towards that balance
A brief story: when I was 17 I sent my bike off for a service, it took a week, I could still swim and run but I could not ride, and I felt like an emotional wreck. Riding has been such a source of peace and calm to me. I ride to cope, I ride to explore, I ride to be social, I ride because it’s just so damn fun!!
Riding does help keep all the emotions in check and I feel so much more alive and ready to tackle each day.
Yes sometimes it’s hard to fit in with a full-time job but it’s so worth it.
There is no better day than today
The health benefits of exercise encompass both mental and physical well-being improvements, give it a go and start now. Even if you just find five minutes at the start, middle or end of your day to walk outside, you may just feel that little bit more at ease. Commuting is another wonderful way to create that balance, please follow the link at the completion of this blog to read about how you can incorporate commuting into your hectic life schedule.
I will leave you with this famous quote to finish:
“Life is like riding a bicycle, to keep your balance, you must keep moving”
For my a blog on commuting to help find your life balance, please follow this link 🙂 www.laridley.com/my-q-time/commute-way-better-life-balance-2/