I want you to take a moment to reflect on what balance means for you.
- Is it a feeling in your physical body?
- Does it have more to do with the quality of your mental processing?
- Or is it a feeling deep down in your soul—like a long lost memory of a time before your life became full of responsibilities?
Our modern life seems to be an increasingly complex balancing act doesn’t it? Too little stress and nothing gets accomplished. Too much pressure, and we can burn out, with our health hanging in the balance—pardon the pun—and our relationships fraying like worn rope.
In years gone by, I thought a seriously stressful occupation was either a role in emergency services or on the stock market floor. Now, every role seems to be fraught with stress thanks to the constant downsizing of organisations, the increase in automation requiring annual upskilling, and competition for fewer roles…need I go on?
Then there’s the hamster wheel of keeping up with what’s happening on social media, and the endless list of TV shows that want watching. Let alone the pile of bills, birthday presents to buy, rental market shortages, and interest rates that can’t possibly stay on hold forever.
Incoming versus outgoing energy
These are all forms of energy expenditure. The worry and weight of it on our shoulders depletes our energy field.
Balance can be defined as “a state of bodily equilibrium” but how do we balance all this energy expenditure, with the need to recharge?
What does balance mean to me?
Balance for me is the ability to navigate myself through stressful situations with more skill than I did yesterday.
Unfortunately I nearly lost the plot as I wrote this due to the internet conking out at a crucial moment. (Can anyone relate?) So I’ve dusted myself off and resolve to have more patience (ie tomorrow!), with the things that are outside my control.
Balance is also about watching how much energy I’m giving out, versus how much I’m generating within. I ask myself, “Am I giving energy to people or situations that I really don’t need to?” This can be as simple as harping on about something that’s over and done with, or trying in vain to people-please. I know I’m not alone on seeking mastery in this area, but it’s challenging isn’t it?
For today… just breathe
Even as I write these words I can feel my body morphing into that sense of equilibrium that arises with each step on a sandy beach or a winding trail through a rain forest.
Take a seat and close your eyes.
** Caution for anyone with a heart condition—please go gently with the following breathing technique, and just do one belly breath instead of three.
Notice the air flowing in and slowly out of your nostrils. Gently take a breathe in and feel how full your lungs are, then exhale and empty them out. With the next inhalation, try to bring the air all the way into your belly. Do this twice more and you’ll start to feel more alive. Lightheaded possibly too, so limit yourself to three of these belly breaths at a time.
This is medicine. Allowing ourselves to come back into ourSELF is medicine.
Closing the eyes for even a moment, with the intention of returning to a balanced state amidst the over stimulation of today’s life is enough, if that’s all you can manage.
In upcoming posts I’ll share more of the tools I’ve gathered for managing my energy—because as much as I try to be masterful at this game, I am still a human with all the human‑ness that entails.
Talk to you soon!