We could always improve on our mental wellness. Wellness takes some thoughts, planning, and execution. We need to act on our wellness…rarely does it come naturally. This new year, perhaps a revaluation of how your life and activities are balanced could support greater levels of well being.
When one thing is the most important thing in our lives, that takes up most of our time, and we can be shattered if that thing goes away. Then what do we have to support us? Most people have been guilty of making their romantic partner the biggest thing of their lives, and then when there is a break up, or some kind of separation, it can feel devastating. Balancing the aspects of our lives safeguards us from this devastation. If you make adequate time for friends, exercise, and interested or hobbies, you are more likely to feel resilient in the face of a break up than destroyed.
Instead of using a prescribed pie chart that has the sections that your life should reflect, it’s more helpful to find your own kind of balance. What are things that would help you feel more balanced, whole, and complete?
For me, work, education, exercise, friends, family interests (piano and language learning), relaxation, self care, and romance are my main “life-balance” categories.
Life balance is not about fitting it all in. If we meditate, gym, work, socialize, drink 8 glasses of water, cook healthy food, do the laundry, and walk the dog, among other things, daily life and practicing balance is exhausting…Actually it is not balance at all.
Balance does not mean that you have to sacrifice huge amounts of time to certain activities. If you are wanting to improve the relation that you have with yourself, for example, you don’t have to go out on lavish dinners or spend hours doing something. You could start with saying, “I accept you…it’s going to be OK….we’ll get through this…” etc. Interjecting small statements that are kind and encouraging only takes a few seconds.
The same goes for Mindfulness. You can add little bits of mindfulness throughout your day. For example, feeling the rain on your skin, or the breeze, noticing the sounds that you hear, etc. That is a small way to bring mindfulness into you life, and is helping you work towards bringing more balance and wellness.
So, ask yourself, “what do I want to bring into my life for more balance?”
The two big ones for most people are work and exercise. Generally, people are wanting to work less, or to
have boundaries with work so that it doesn’t overwhelm your life. How can you do that? If you can’t afford to work less, yet want to, are there ways that you can cut down on your living expenses, by, say, moving, or making more meals at home, so that you can?
In terms of exercise, most people want to do it, yet don’t make it a habit, or find excuses to skip it. Exercise is so important to your health and well-being. Exercise curbs anxiety, boosts mood, and clears the mind. Exercise will support you through all the ups and downs of life. How can you bring in exercise everyday? What do you like doing? Dance? Yoga? Walking? Make time for it.
Balance requires a plan. Schedule it in if you’d like it to happen. We are more likely to follow through with a plan than with no plan. Always remember to include some spaces, so that you are not rushing from activity to activity. This leads to frustration, anger, and overwhelm.
Find yourself a positive change buddy! See if you can find friends who will exercise with you, socialize while doing something healthy!
I have a rule for flexibility: I do what I say that I will 80% or more. It’s OK to have an off day, yet stay committed to your balance most of the time.
Find balance in 2020, and keep moving in that direction. Sure there will be setbacks and upsets, and the important thing to remember is to keep going back, and working on your wellness.
Photo by Andrik Langfield on Unsplash
Photo by Raka Rachgo on Unsplash
Photo by Plush Design Studio on Unsplash
Photo by Jon Flobrant on Unsplash