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Balance

December 10th, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

049: Sunset through the treesSometimes, I think life is a constant balancing act. Work versus play. Want versus need. Friends versus family. Happiness versus despair. Others versus self. Present versus past versus future.

We are always fighting to find a perfect balance that suits us any given day. Lately, I have felt like I’ve placed a lot of focus on work over all other things. The drive to make money to pay the bills or to have a little fun later has trumped all things… and I have never really been “that person” before. Atleast not the the extent that I’ve been the last however-long.

I was just laying in bed, cat curled up beside me, using my elbow as a pillow. He purred loudly and snuggled up into me a few times. If I could purr, I would have purred right with him. There was a peacefulness in that moment. A stillness. There was no demand for a balancing act. There was no placing one thing over another. There was simply being.

It was wonderful.

But of course, my brain decided to get into the act and my mind went back to a friend’s Facebook status update from a few days ago. One that really struck me hard, and its left me thinking about it for days now.

I used to work in a mental hospital thousands of years ago. I was kind of just getting through it as a job, and hoping to get out and be a full time musician. I was around some great minds, and I missed a few pearls of wisdom in my rush to the “bigtime”. Here’s one of them…”List these 5 parts of your life in the order you think they should be prioritized. Work/Career, Family, God, Friends, and Health. When you have your list, then place the percentage of your actual time spent on each to the right of your list. Then have a good look at your results…smile…and say wow.”

They went on to give their lists, and ever since I’ve wondered what my list would look like. I think my list would have to read God, Health, Family, Friends, Work/Career.  Giving the percentage of time actually spent, though… that’s really, really tough.

♦ In one way, I have to admit that God wouldn’t get the high percentage He deserves, if I take into account the fact that I’ve not made it to church is far longer than I ever, EVER, thought I’d go between masses. But in the same breath, I strive to have conversations with God throughout my day. Or like last night, I “worked the door” at work — meaning I sat outside and tried to get people to come in, and I checked IDs to ensure 21+ was followed. During a particularly slow period of time, I sat quietly and said several prayers. Taking time at work to talk to God. It warmed me from the inside on a cold, cold night.

♦ Health… Well, I don’t give it what it deserves, primarily due to the high cost or health care. Never ending sinus troubles that should probably be checked by an ENT are simply dealt with, in my own ways. I need to visit a dentist one of these days, and its been about two years since I had an eye exam. I don’t give my health the attention it deserves. However, in the same breath, I am constantly concious of what I put into my body. Be it the food I eat or the air I breathe. I am perhaps one of the more aware people you’ll find about it all.

♦ Family… I make time in my day every single day to talk to my parents. Even if its just a few text messages, I have to make contact with them. Its important to me. And my husband is my best friend… I can’t even go to sleep at night without a good night from him, even when he’s on the road. And not a day goes by where I don’t take time to gaze at a family photo and feel blessed.

Priceless friendships

♦ Friends… living over 800 miles from the closest family member (outside of my husband, of course) has lead me to building precious friendships all around me. I rely on my friends in deeper ways than any of them would ever know. And thanks to Facebook and text messages, I can have contact with old-long-time friends any time I want to… and I do that several times a day!

♦ Finally, work/career… what brings me to this list in the first place. Work has taken a serious lead place in my life. Serious. My days pretty much revolve around when and if I am working that day or the next or the day after that. It has become my focal point… more than even the career side of building my photography and writing talents. I did NOT intend to have that happen, and its something I look to remedy in the new year. Look to balance that a lot more than I have been. Somehow.

I can’t give these a percentage, because I am constantly striving for balance. And on any given day, the percentage could be wildly different from the next. I do know, though, a few areas I need to make a few tweaks, more in my perceptions than in anything else. Time management. Prioritizing. All of it. It’s not a new year’s resolution… its a life resolution. Keep an eye on life’s balance, and strive to find it. And with doing that, find more moments of being. Peace. Calm. Knowing all is right in my world. If only for a few moments.

 

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  1. Anne
    December 16th, 2011 at 15:59 | #1

    Love this post. I sort of feel like I’m making up for my years of living the life of a schoolteacher in my current lifestyle. I’m no longer ruled by the sound of a bell, or by grading, or by parents, or by self-serving admins, or by the kids. I miss so much of teaching, but in the same breath this time to myself and with Chris is absolutely priceless. It’s given me a much-needed balance to my life, overall. I know I’ll teach again someday, and when that day comes, I’ll appreciate it and probably have more balance than in the past. I won’t “live my job” – it’ll just be a job in my life.

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