Hardly a day goes by that we don’t hear about life balance or work-life balance. I used to strive for balance and then I realized it was a losing battle for me. It also bored me and I’m completely fine with that. Work-life balance is an idyllic realism and ends up creating feelings of inadequacies when we can’t make it work in our own lives.
Balance infers equal weight is given to all areas of our life – equal in amount, significance, and value. But the problem is that not all things are equal. Not all things are of equal importance and certainly not all things are equal in passion.
The pursuit of life balance can be stressful. It’s an exasperating juggle of your career, your personal life, and what others expect of you. And if you do manage to get balanced, your satisfaction with that is generally only temporary.
If you look at satisfaction as a fulfillment of a current desire, then you begin to understand its temporary nature. Let’s say you just had a delicious meal and now you feel very full and satisfied. That’s fine for now but when tomorrow comes, the hunger surfaces once again.
You see, the same holds true with the fulfillment of goals. Goals are met and needs are satisfied — at that moment.
Think about life’s journey as a series of desires that are transformed into goals. Each goal is like a single step in that journey. Every step walked inches you just a bit closer to your desired result. So, when you meet one goal, it’s just that. It’s one goal but that may not be your end destination. That’s why you still keep peering down the path to see what lies ahead.
So when you do realize success, it throws all things out of whack. You wonder what’s next. Just when you get everything all balanced, circumstances arise or other ideas pop into your head and it feels lopsided again. You may never seem to be able to strike the right balance. It may even feel like you’re losing a battle but rarely is life tied up in a perfect little bow.
Don’t Confuse Happiness and Satisfaction
They seem to have a similar connotation but they actually describe two different states of being. Being satisfied is more about meeting an expectation whereas happiness is used to describe the feeling of bliss in the heart or the mind. Happiness is a feeling to sustain and preserve, but satisfaction may be something in which you constantly strive to attain. Take the time to celebrate each goal you meet but don’t beat yourself up because you still want more.
Being Out of Balance Can Help You Reach Goals
Striving for balance will derail your plans for greatness.
I can’t ever imagine Sir Richard Branson saying he was striving to live a balanced life. Although I don’t know him personally so that’s a huge assumption on my part but I just don’t see it. This is the man who said, “Dream big by setting yourself seemingly impossible challenges. You then have to catch up with them.” His aim seems to be on living a life of passion and breaking all barriers and stretching any boundary that restricts him. Doesn’t sound like balance to me.
It’s Not the Imbalances We Should Worry About
It’s not the imbalances of life that hold you back —it’s doing pointless things that aren’t adding meaning to your life. The more you pursue what you love, the more harmony you’ll create and that is “balance” to many.
When you do what you love, your energy is magnified. And when your energy is intensified, you’ll feel less out of sorts and you’ll stop worrying about being balanced.
Balance is the furthest thing from my mind these days. It shifted about ten years ago. I was on a quest for something that I was never going to reach. And then I realized, I don’t want to be balanced. I’m most energized when I throw myself into my passion. I feel alive when I’m doing something totally out of my comfort zone and expanding my horizons with new experiences.
Stop worrying about perfecting a balanced life or a perfected life. Maybe one day your career takes precedence and maybe the other day, it’s something else. You should feel free to define how to combine the percentage of effort that goes into your work and life.
Don’t let your quest for balance derail your plans for greatness. Do what you love and do what is meaningful.
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