Back in my University days, I thought having balance in life meant having a little of everything. An active social life, great career, quality family time, and even community service. I tried to do it all at the same time.
That lifestyle lasted for a period before completely burning me out. I learned the hard way that you can’t have it all at once.
Now, having balance in life for me means to prioritize on what it is that I really want out of life and stay focus.
Time and focus are finite assets.
I once juggled between classes, part-time work, social events, and family time. At that time, I felt that I was balancing my life with work and play. This was true for some time.
The reason eventually became because I was afraid of missing out.
What if a great opportunity comes my way if I miss that networking event? What if I miss out on a great joke at this party and I’m excluded in the next hangout? What if I look bad for saying no to this gathering?
What if? What if?
Because of these what ifs, I have a lot of trouble saying no to almost every invitation that came my way.
One of the costs I paid in saying yes to everything was my health and well-being. Exercise, a good night’s sleep was completely off the menu.
Living in perpetual fear of missing out on things is one of the fastest ways to throw us off our balance.
Something amazing is always happening somewhere. We’re going to miss out on a lot of things. That’s okay. We can’t be everywhere.
Being a part of one or two things that’s larger than life is already such a blessing. We have to decide what is it that we want to be a part of in life and work towards that direction.
What I’m working on practicing today is to limit my focus only on things that will get me closer to the things that matter to me. Even if these are things that others do not view as being important.
A spiritual person, for example, would prioritize their life with meditation, prayers, and other act of worship.
To someone who thinks spirituality is not important would view any act of worship as being extreme.
The only person that can feel the weighing scale of our life is us. Our priorities can change. That’s also okay.
In university, my priority then was to try as many new things as possible. It was my balancing act then. Which I feel that was why it lasted for as long as it did. Fast forward to today, my balancing act needs to change.
I need a clearer path rather than just exploring for the sake of it. My health took a toll on me during my days of trying out new things all the time. Today, I may have to focus my weeknights on going to the gym rather than constantly socializing.
There will come a time where I’m going to need to spend more time giving back to people. It’s a constant cycle of seasons.
Striking for balance is a lifelong pursuit.