How to Achieve True Balance in Life – The Holistic Way
With life’s ups and downs sometimes, it can feel like an emotional rollercoaster forever navigating through the peaks, troughs and sudden turns that life throws every so often. Whilst sometimes it can be an unpredictable element of ‘fun’ (i.e. ‘full of life’s surprises’) for the majority of the time it can exhausting, emotionally draining and hence lead to what can only be described as a lack of balance or imbalance in overall wellbeing.
What presumably seems to drive us to the lack of balance in our lives from personal experience and having worked with clients is ‘Expectations’. One of the key factors is how we seem to place either very high expectations or zero expectations on events in our lives that either lead to an outcome of disappointment or emotional high, which undoubtedly leads to the rollercoaster of emotions we often experience.
That said historically it’s never really been easy for women to achieve the ‘balanced’ medium of being able to have a thriving career whilst also putting one’s time, effort, energy and resources into a ‘happy’ family life. Being a working mum (whether full/part time or running a business) comes with its own bouts of stress, tied in with guilt for not being to divide one’s time precisely between family and work. Right now, women are choosing to have it all (and why not?) the blissful family life, a rewarding career/business and some solitude time for themselves, but one could argue at what cost?
It’s been 10 years since I had my first child, at which stage I was going from strength to strength in my career. Just like many women I encountered my fair share of struggles, torn between an immeasurable joy of becoming a mother and not wanting to let my career slide. However, with much resilience and determination (arguably greatest strengths of women) I truly believe we can all achieve a ‘balance’ that works for us. It’s also worth remembering that this kind of balance looks different on everyone and should be treated as individual as you.
So how do we turn this white knuckle roller-coaster of emotions and imbalances, between the paradigms of life into a calmer, more balanced, relaxing and enjoyable journey amongst the two predominant areas, being work life and personal life?
Here are some holistic tips that helped me and I hope it helps you too.
1. Assess your life as it is this very moment. Look at various aspects of your life that you are constantly juggling, constantly trying to keep a balance, on relationships, family, health, money, friends, motherhood etc. Are you able to devote ample energy to all areas? Or do you find yourself physically exhausted, mentally stagnant and closed off at times? Would you call yourself a workaholic? Look at where there is imbalances and use these areas to focus on primarily. It’s useful to limit yourself to 2-3 areas to work on initially to get started.
2. Simplify hun! As a mother juggling many things, I soon realised that we all simply don’t have the time to do everything especially if the focus is on creating a family and work life that is abundant. I also found simplicity is the answer to overwhelm. This might look like cutting back on some activities/events that are not important or picking activities/events that won’t take a pinch out of other areas of your life. One thing I have learnt to do well is do activities at the same time as my kids e.g take kids to swimming/football and get a massage/answer a few emails etc. Planning meals ahead of time and cooking a small batch so we can eat well and also, I get more time to spend with my family and if I choose on myself or on my business. When we simplify, our priorities also become clearer which links back to tip 1.
3. Create a routine and be consistent. Hallelujah for routines and consistency without these two things I’d be lost most days. Routines are great because they not only help us focus, but they can really help us remain calm and balanced. Creating a schedule of your ‘ideal work day’, ideal family day’ and ‘ideal morning’, can really help shift perspective of what’s important in life and help feel more fulfilled. Balance is about feeling like we have achieved things that are meaningful to us and in business it will help with achieving goals. Routines create a sense of achievement as even with life’s interruptions it won’t completely knock you off track. However, with routine comes consistency. Consistency helps with the imbalances caused by expectations we hold in certain areas in life. Adding consistency to a discipline or routine can help lower the number of ‘unwelcomed life’s surprises’ that can lead to stress. For instance, we see consistency is fundamental in lots of areas of life where results are gained i.e in weight loss/fitness, business growth, family routine, mental health etc.
4. Develop a Network and Ask for help. One of the things I value most is my ‘network’. The symbol for ‘balance’ is often seen as a set of scales. Just imagine for one second you are trying to create the ‘right balance’ on these scales on your own! Undoubtedly, they would fall to one side. Hence the power of networks help create this balance. These can look like friends in personal life, other parents in your family life, work associates, accountability partners, coaches, circles, groups in business life – all these people can bring balance and help you work through challenges in life! Just be sure that you also ask them for help when needed (something I have painfully learnt over the years) Not asking for help is a straight up NO. Asking for help has led me to many opportunities personal and business. Take for instance now, I am writing this article because I asked Elena and Dahlia if I could contribute. How is that leading to balance? Well fundamental to what I do as a coach and what brings me balance is the sense of fulfilment in helping others get more from their life.
5. Reflect and Empower yourself! The ability to reflect increases self-awareness. Self-awareness is so important for developing emotional intelligence and developing better understanding of ourselves and our world. The importance of this is often imbalances occur because there is a disconnect with our wants vs our needs. For instance, we usually focus on wanting things or a life others have, however reflection and self-awareness creates a sense of purpose, therefore harmonising our internal state of mind with our external environment – vital if we want to achieve a purposeful and happy balance. Reflection leads to empowering our thoughts, our beliefs and our choices and decisions, I truly believe we cannot achieve balance if we are busy self-sabotaging ourselves and being cruel to ourselves.
True balance is gained from a place of harmony.
Sejal is a single mother of three and the founder of “The Well Nu Collective”. She is as a holistic wellness coach who helps women make positive and lasting changes to their overall wellbeing through three defining pillars Nutrition, Movement and Mindset. She guides women through the process of creating a vision for their health and well-being, developing a healthy mindset and healthy habits, and encouraging them every step of the way until they accomplish their goals. Follow The Well Nu Collective on Instagram and on Facebook to find out more about Sejal and her work.