“Life is like a bicycle. To keep your
balance you must keep moving. “
The other day I came across a tower of rocks balanced on top of each other. Knowing they were probably glued to one another, I still thought it was pretty awesome how they were in balance.
Then a couple of days ago I was reflecting on my life this year and the slow turn it gave compared to the rest of my life. When I look past this last year, I see a busy girl with many responsibilities and commitments. At times, it was overwhelming and became stressed. Other times, it felt perfect. Though I was busy, I felt accomplished and happy. I thoroughly enjoyed having things to do and they brought me joy. I felt balanced.
And during these times of joy, I met many obstacles that tried to take away my balance.
Lets go back to Einstein’s quote at the beginning. Like he compares it, our lives are like a ride on a bicycle. As we’re happily riding down a road of joy and in balance, sudden obstacles present themselves. Obstacles we have to maneuver around, jump over or ignore. Some obstacles we have to drive away from as fast as we can while others take us on a detour or to a complete stop. Sometimes we even fall off the bike when we become completely out of balance. But when we keep going is when we are able to maintain our ‘bike ride’ in balance.
I learned that life was a journey, and that if we make it a choice to live in joy, my life would be in balance despite any situation or obstacle that presented itself. The answer has always been to keep going.
Balance: Keep Moving
Is complete balance truly achievable?
I believe no one can achieve complete balance where everything is perfect. It’s the reason we are always searching to improve ourselves in certain areas. But balance is trying to remain upright and steady as Google definition puts it. It’s the obstacles we face that try to knock us out of balance. How do we maintain balance? We keep going.
You see, in life we get knocked down from our balance when we allow ourselves to hit rock bottom with the setbacks that happen in our lives or when we are doing more or not enough of what we love. It’s when we lose our joy that it becomes hard to have balance.
A balanced person is one who can experience joy despite situations. A person who keeps going when times get tough. Most times, we may be a little out of balance, but we will be just fine.
It’s when we are way out of balance that we need to worry. And when I say way out of balanced, I’m talking about those times in life where we have given up and feel there is no purpose for which to live for. I’m also talking about those times that we do so much or so little it drains us and makes us sick either physically, emotionally, or spiritually.
My discovery on balance
Where most of my life I spent busy but happy, part of this last year I spent it in slow mode and unhappy. It was a type of life I was not used to living. Having less things to do did not bring me joy like I thought it would. It did not remove stress or anxiety from being felt. I was living a life that many wish they had (to be home), yet I was unhappy. It took me a long time to come to peace with my current situation.
In fact, this led me to discover that balance is different for everyone. I discovered that being home is not something I like for me because my personality is the kind who can’t sit still nor be home full-time. I like to be busy with a job, church, marriage and more. I like to move around constantly, and that means move around outside of my home too.
We all have a certain pace we feel comfortable with. It’s our personal pace we need to discover and live by so we can be as balanced as we can and experience true joy. For some it may be one commitment a week, others having a full and busy week, and for others an over-packed schedule suits them just fine.
Knowing how much you can handle will bring balance to life. If you’re feeling like you need to do more, then sign up for something else. Meet with people, take a class, go somewhere new. If you feel you have too many commitments and need to dedicate more time to family or something else, then cut back on the responsibilities and relax a little. I had to cut back once and it was the best thing I did for my sanity!
Life is meant to be lived the way we most enjoy it. In the reflection of my life and what balance means, I realized I enjoy being busy. Not to the point it becomes stressful, but to a point that keeps me from feeling unproductive. Like I said, everyone has a different level of how much they like to balance.
Balance for me specifically, is a bit of work, a bit of fitness, a bit of fun (travel), a bit of learning (reading), a bit of hobbies (blogging), a bit of friends and family, and a lot of God and marriage time. Having all of this in my life is important. Most of all, balance is when I keep moving despite setbacks.
While your list may be shorter or longer, seek to do the things you love. Because those things you love will be the ones to bring you joy, therefore you will experience balance if you know just how much you can handle.
Balance is something we design for ourselves. It’s knowing how much we can handle and how we keep moving. It’s being able to feel joy in life. It’s knowing when there’s an area we are struggling in and seek to fix it. Balance is when you’re riding that bike upright and steady, at your very own pace. We design our own life balance based on how we want to keep moving and how much we handle. Balance is different for everyone.
As for me, this reflection has motivated me to regain my balance in life again.
How do you maintain balance? What are your priorities? What things do you like to balance? Which would you get rid of? What brings you the most joy that you want to do more of? Are there things you can cut back on to do more of what you love? Are there things you can add to satisfy how busy you like to be?