Happy Friday beautiful blog readers! I hope you all have had a good week and are looking forward tothe weekend! I’ve had a great, but busy week- which has inspired this post… All about finding balance. In every sense of the word. These are some personal accounts and observations about finding (and sometimes struggling with) balance in my life. I hope something in here speaks to each one of you or causes you to look at the balance (lack of it) in your lives.
Balance in the most literal sense. Like, if you stand on one foot can you stay there still and peaceful or are you wiggle-wobbling all over? After many years of dance and many many twisted ankles (my right ankle has been twisted at least 6 times), this was a sticking point for me for many years… and still is on rainy days ;-/ I didn’t know what really to do to “have better balance”. Usually in trying to achieve it, I would get more stressed and frustrated… and only become more unbalanced.
Now as a (more) physically active and away young adult, I’ve learned that there are many things that can to worked on to achieve better physical balance. One would be working on core strength and centering. Having a strong center (the powerhouse for the rest of the body and limbs) helps you transfer weight smoothly and evenly from one foot to the other. Working consistently on my core strength has also help me to overcome a 6 year old back injury- that only until recently did not flair up every time I did true pushups or heavy lifting!
Balance is something that needs to be practiced and revisited many times. It’s worked on in many dance or Pilates class you will go to. In fact, we did a single leg balancing series in my Pilates class today and I didn’t hardly waiver at all. It felt really good to see and feel my personal progress.
This really goes closely with physical balance, but in a different way. Sometimes when I look at how much I run, hit the gym, or throw myself into a class, I’m surprised I’m still standing. My stress relief is working out… a LOT. But there is such a thing as to much! Balancing time in the gym and time to recover is important. That recovery time give your body a chance to rebuild muscle and become stronger. But when my head is spinning and the only relief is to be on the running trail, it’s important to be careful… overdoing it could be a lot worse then some tears.
I’ve found a nice balance… for now at least! Trying to run 3+ miles every other day, and biking or walking on the off days. Always stretching and doing core strengthening. Then on days off, not even thinking about it!
I would be the one to push myself to far. Last week i was in the gym for 3 hours. Felt great and did some of everything and did it well… but then took the next 2 days off from high impact workouts. The next time I went for a run, I felt better and was looking forward to it, rather then dragging myself through it. Your body will thank you for this sense of balance.
Sleep vs. Awake
Now I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time finding a good balance between sleep and getting everything I need done in a day. We all know some of the reasons sleep is so important- it’s a time for your body to rest and recover (either from the daily stress of life or from an injury or illness), sleep aids in memorization and productivity, it gives your body systems time to recharge, etc. However, we all know that the demands of daily life in 2014 (especially in New York) don’t always understand or lend themselves to everyone getting those 8+/- uninterrupted hours of sleep. I discovered on my trip to Illinois how tired I was. The first few days there I literally fell asleep every 3 hours, for at least 1 hour, and finally felt like I was “caught up” on sleep.
I’m still struggling with this aspect of balance. Even on days off, when I technically could sleep in and not be late for anything, I make myself rise at a relatively early hour. If I stay in bed to long i end up feeling like I’ve waisted the day. I will get up and go to the gym even when I want to stay in and rest. Part of it is guilt, “waisted the day”. Part of it is knowing how much I want to get done in a day. Part of it is fear, that if I stay inside and to myself I’ll get lonely and sad.
But there must be a good middle ground. Turning in right after getting home at night to wake early the next morning and not feel exhausted all day at work. Allowing some sleeping in, and being perfectly alright if everything on that To-Do list doesn’t get checked off that day. It’s a process, finding that balance.
I seem to have a hard time finding and maintaining balance in this category. It’s perfectly normal to have emotional reactions to various events- good, bad, happy, or sad, however sometimes I feel like my emotions are the ones calling the shots and not at all checking in ith the rest of me! But emotions are not something we can actually see or touch… we can’t put a brace on them for stability. So what can one do?
I found I got a graet emotional break when I got out of NYC and into the still, quiet, calm of my summer cottage in the valley. I was able to get some perspective on my life, my situation, and my future. I wasn’t constantly around reminders of that previous relationship or the place i used to call home. I was able to distance myself and in doing so, came to a balance emotionally. Harkening back to my previous post, EX-Factor, I was able to see, accept, acknowledge, and move on from what happened. Allowing for this freed up some space to care and worry about other things- like myself and my rolls at work. Being balanced physically and emotionally compliment one another and personally a least, have made me feel better about myself and more confident.
In just about everything else!
Balancing time with friends and time to one’s self.
Balancing one’s finances.
Balancing the good old diet. This one I have fun with… as a bored eater, it’s sometimes hard to balance the snacking with the meals. When am I actually hungry and need to eat vs. when am I just eating cause it’s something to do. Not to mention what are you putting in your body??? Are you getting a healthy balance of vegetables, fruits, carbs, protein, sugar, fiber… all that other stuff! Especially when I leave home at 7AM and don’t come back till 11PM it gets hard to always eat healthy and on the go, without chewing a hole threw my wallet!
Who knew one word would pop up so much and in so many different places!?! And get a whole post to itself! haha. I guess it’s just that important and because I does appear in so many different places, it’s something pretty much everyone has dealt with and can relate to. Sometimes it’s easier to find and achieve then others, but balance is something that one can always work on.
I carry a little reminder to stay balanced on my person everyday. The tattoo on my right ankle. A traditional Yin-Yang symbolizing harmony and balance. You can’t know black without knowing its opposite, white. Nothing can exist without it’s opposite, but there are proportions that (when maintained) allow for calm and “balance”. Why my right ankle? Well not only because that is my weaker ankle, but I’m right side dominant- so reminding me to mix it up and lead with the left. And to have a personal reminder, in general, all the time. For balance in every sense of the word… idea… life style. And it’s beautiful!
Well… I don’t think I have to much more to say on this subject at the moment. What helps you find balance in your life? What is a struggle for you to balance? I know I’m not alone in this… sometimes though it’s hard to see where things are sliding one way or the other. It’s not always an easy quick fix either. thoughts?
AND bonus point to the reader/follower who can name the source I’m referencing in this entry title!!!!!
So on that note and till next time- follow, like, comment, share, etc!
love always, christiane