How to Balance Life in a Chaotic World – Part 1
Balance can be challenging no matter what the situation. Whether you are attempting to balance your checkbook, your kids schedule, multiple projects at work, or even your own diet. When you combine them all together, achieving any type of work-life balance can seem completely overwhelming.
But balance is not only achievable, it is necessary in living in our modern world. You are bombarded with so many distractions around social media, hobbies, entertainment, sports, kid’s activities, work, church, community, and home. Your life can get over run in the blink of an eye if you are not intentional about achieving some type of balance in your life.
The word balance can have a somewhat negative connotation. Many people do not feel balance can be achieved. There are too many outside forces at work in our lives for us to keep everything in balance. But you can keep your life in harmony. You can think of every area of your life; career, home, mental, relationships, finances, and spirituality as individual notes. Your goal is to keep all these areas of your life in harmony in order to produce a beautiful chord. Will some notes get out of tune every once in a while? Of course. You are attempting to keep them in tune as best as possible regardless of the situation.
Ways to Build Balance in Your Life
1) Be Intentional
The only way you will ever build harmony in your life is to be intentional. Intentionality must flourish in every area of your life, with a laser focus on two attributes. The first is to say no. There are simply too many competing priorities in our lives. You will never keep up with everything being asked of you. The best way to eliminate these distractions is to say no in the beginning. Clear you plate of anything which is unnecessary and not in tune with your overall goal and purpose in life.
The second area to be intentional is to plan. If you do not plan your spending, time, and resources they will be planned or spent for you. You need to plan your time for work, relationships, family, and hobbies as closely and precisely as you plan your budget. The plan can help you be intentional and assist in knowing when to say no. If you are not intentional with your life, someone else will be. Then your life will be used to live out someone else’s dreams instead of your own. Be intentional to keep your life in harmony.
2) Take care of your body
You have to take care of yourself. You cannot keep abusing your body and thinking it will keep up with you in the long haul. As much as you may not like to admit it, proper exercise and eating right can make a tremendous difference in having the strength and energy to be intentional with your life. Think about it for a moment, when your life begins to unravel what are usually the first things to get thrown out the window? Diet and exercise.
If you are not committed to some type of healthy eating and exercise in your life, then stop right now and figure out a plan. Nothing you achieve in life will be worthwhile if you do not have the strength and energy to enjoy the process.
3) Turn Off Distractions
If you are even going to attempt any type of balance in your life, then you have to be able to turn off distractions. Our cell phones, social media, and constant notifications are a constant distraction to what is happening in the moment. Thus, we are missing conversations, relationships, and even pure beauty which may be right in front of us.
“People who maintain balance are able to turn off their electronic devices to enjoy quality uninterrupted time doing matters they enjoy. They realize that multitasking is a myth and focus on the task at hand.”
In the beginning, this may be the most difficult task to complete in your pursuit of balance, but probably the most important. Start small by putting your phone away when you have coffee or lunch with a friend. Set times at night where you set your phone in another room. Do not sleep with your phone beside your bed, charge it in another room. Whether you realize it or not, you can get by just fine without a phone. Learn to engage the life which is in front of you and not to be distracted by the phone in your hand.
Running yourself 16 hours a day may achieve short-term success, but you will eventually burn out. Rest is a key element of a balanced life and a trait which is overlooked or discarded all too easily. Without proper rest we lose concentration, are more irritable, are more easily fatigued, more easily distracted, and not as creative. These are all essential elements in creating and maintaining a balanced life. Americans are unhealthier, stressed, and depressed than other parts of the world.
You may need to go to bed a little earlier. Maybe you can insert a quick nap into your day or learn to relax more on the weekends instead of going 100mph. Whatever rest looks like for you, your life will never full be balanced if you are walking around like the half-dead all the time. Make rest a priority and ensure you are seeking it diligently within all your pursuits.
Eliminating the distractions of life and creating focus all boils down to being intentional. How can you be intentional today in making these 4 chords a priority in your life?
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