Can we really reach balance in our life?
I know everyone’s after it, but can we really reach a state where we give equal attention to every area of our life, and each of them is successful?
I don’t think so.
When we think we have balance, we actually don’t. Because just like security is an illusion, so is the idea of having all things under control, finding time for all the activities that need our focus, and – more importantly – having the desire to do them all with joy.
The way I see it, balance is a synonym of perfectionism. And the latter never leads to anything good.
People tend to lose themselves when trying to make everything perfect. This can drive them crazy.
Why Balance Doesn’t Work?
We put too much pressure into trying to find and reach balance, we do it with a tense mind, we try hard.
It requires having control over everything, which is also an utopia.
At any given moment hundreds of forces, outer factors and unpredictable situations combine in a different way to bring us the next surprise the future has in store.
That scares most people. But we need to realize that it’s not bad. It’s just life.
You don’t need to be prepared, to know what’s going to happen. That means you can leave behind all the worries and fears you constantly have about what might happen tomorrow. And that will make room for more peace and happiness.
The idea of balance is also connected with having it all figured out and being in control. But there are so many outcomes each situation can have, it’s impossible to think about them all and make plans.
And that’s the beauty of life.
Balance denies surprises, going with the flow, challenges, opportunities. But they are what helps us grow, thrive and change for the better.
A person living a balanced life is also expected to be doing great, or at least okay, in every area of life. That’s such a wrong expectation, as some areas need more focus and others need to be left behind. So to reach balance also means to deny prioritizing.
Would Thomas Edison have invented the light bulb if he hadn’t become obsessed with trying again and again after each failure, and forgotten about everything else?
I guess not.
And I think that most of the things that make our life comfortable today wouldn’t be here either.
Artists usually live in chaos in the eyes of others. But that’s just what makes them create more. No books would have ever been finished if the writer hadn’t ditched everything else going on in his life at the time of writing.
Most people wouldn’t be successful if – for some time – they haven’t ruined their social life while working on a big project.
Here’s another example:
When I feel like writing, I can do it for hours. And I stop doing anything else. If inspiration hits, I don’t care that I haven’t eaten, or whether it’s 3 a.m.
Or when I feel like pushing harder at the gym, I simply do it. And I feel great after that.
Other people in my life won’t understand that. But it’s what works for me. And that’s how an individual lives on his own terms.
It’s not bad to focus solely on work for a long period of time. There are many people out there who dedicate a few months of their life and create the pillars of a whole career. That costs them many sleepless nights, their social life and more. But there’s nothing wrong with that.
And right after finishing a project, they may be off to a tropical island for the next few months. That’s not the average balanced lifestyle, but it sure is one a happy and successful person has.
Finding a Solution
Often you start trying to reach balance because you feel that something is missing, or just follow the crowd as you think that’s the right thing to do.
But it’s not.
There are deeper desires underneath all that and balance itself won’t fill those needs.
The solution is to let go of that strong and constant wish to have things under control, to feel safe. Stop trying to reach, find or create balance. Stop putting in so much effort and pressure, and trying to plan everything. Just go with the flow.
Do whatever you feel like doing. Still keep working hard and being focused, just do it for the things you love, and whenever you want to.
Do you know what will happen next?
You’ll feel the natural balance of life. You’ll know you’re doing what you should be doing at this exact moment. You know things may change, but will be okay with that.
And when you let go of the idea of balance and stop trying to make things fit into it, you’ll have the chance to embrace the effortless life. That’s when you’ll have more balance than you could ever wish for.
It just won’t be the common version of it, the one we’ve all heard of.
So go out there and reach that state of mind. Let go of balance, and then find it as a result of that.