‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’.
Regret Number 2 – The Top 5 Regrets of the Dying
Welcome to Part 2.
How did you go with giving to yourself what you’re used to giving to others? What did you notice?
Before we talk about the mechanics of balance I want to introduce you to the principles involved.
- You are at the core of every decision you make.
- Not choosing is a choice.
- Only you know what’s right for you.
- Your path is yours to walk.
The F Word
Now this may make some people feel uneasy, but before we can go any further with talking about balance, we need to talk about the F word.
Why? Because feelings are the rails that allow us to know if we’re on our path or heading off it. They’re the key to self-correction and the more we’re attuned to them the easier this whole balance thing becomes.
A problem we have is that feelings can sometimes be uncomfortable and many (most?) of us have never been taught how to effectively navigate them. We’ve labelled them good and bad, positive and negative. We avoid them, suppress them or allow them to become all-consuming. We also ignore or play down the important messages our good-feeling emotions offer us.
There are many ways to avoid feeling.
Some examples are:
- Endless scrolling through social media (focusing on the lives of others)
- Drugs and alcohol (numbing)
- Mindless television (escape)
- People pleasing (focusing on the needs of others rather than our own)
- Busyness (don’t have time to think)
The fact is that ALL of our feelings are pure gold. They’re simply data and valuable data at that.
If you knew that on the other side of that uncomfortable feeling was everything you ever wanted, would you be willing to sit with it for a while? Because everything you’ve ever wanted IS on the other side of that uncomfortable feeling and that feeling is the path to it.
There are two ways we can look at balance – as an outcome and a process.
We can have a birds-eye view of life (outcome) and a ground level view of life (process). Spend too much time on the ground and it’s hard to see the forest for the trees. Spend too much time up above and nothing gets done.
Balance as an Outcome – The Birds-eye View
This is the big picture that allows us to look at all areas of our life and where we’re sitting in each area at a moment in time.
It requires time to be allocated at regular intervals and honest reflection.
Balance as a Process – The Ground Level View
These are the moments in each day in which we make choices that determine our future. Our feelings are the navigation system that guides us in these choices.
It’s an ongoing process and requires a commitment to living consciously.
Both are necessary as they give us valuable information that we can then respond to, and it’s our ability to respond that puts us in the driver’s seat of life.
Imbalance occurs when the process is only partially done, not done intentionally but left to chance or not done at all.
All of that is within our control.
Stay tuned for Part 3 – the speed bumps that send us off course.