Friday, November 28, 2008

All about Balance

Here we go - a new look! What do you think?!

Since I've been doing this blogging thing for just over a year now, I figured it was time to find myself a new template. Sort of like a haircut, if I have the same style for too long, I start to feel stale. I AM still sticking with one of the free one-size-fits-all template that comes with Blogger, but that is because I'm trying to keep things simple and balanced for this little life of mine. Someday I may dive into a unique look, but for now this works for me.

I commented over on Mizfit's Thanksgiving gratitude post that if I had a custom made bracelet like the one she has as a giveaway I'd have it say BALANCE (yes, that picture is of me on a balance board - one of my author photos that I use to tell people about the programs I offer!). For me, balance happens when:

1. I take care of my body with at least 2 runs/week (and now that I'm totally into this Balance Ball thing, 3 times of that, too - and these are easier to fit in, too). I'm happier with more, but for now life is about balance, not about performance.

2. I read. Walking away from all things with plugs (except the lamp by my bed or chair!) and sitting down with a book calms me and centers me. Fiction helps me escape and non-fiction empowers me with knowledge to improve myself. Children's books reunite me with my youth while grown-up novels and books show me what the world has to offer that I haven't yet explored.

3. I incorporate music. When I feel overwhelmed (or even worse, when my son points out, "Mom, I think you could use some time to yourself."), I find that everything goes better with the right background music. I use it as motivation when we have to clean, uplifting when we get home from errands and school and transition to lunch/dinner, and a great change of subject when the kids are arguing in the back seat of the car. Music changes everything - and almost always for the better.

4. I feel successful with my writing. Whether it be dashing out a blog post, forming a new business connection through email, getting an important press release put together, or selling a single copy of a book to a young reader, the quality of words I string together has a direct affect on my mood. When I take time and put together something strong, my confidence is higher and it spills into the other areas of my life. My sloppy writing is a reflection that somehow the other areas of my life are disorganized, too, and I need to figure out how to get back in balance.

5. I show gratitude. Whether through verbal or written reminders to my family or friends that I appreciate who they are and how they play a part in my life, or through prayer, this is an essential piece of who I am. I know that I can't go it alone in life and that it is because of the people around me that I have a rich and full life. I have been blessed in numerous ways and it is important that I take time to be thankful and to show others gratitude. Easy to think about post-Thanksgiving, but important to incorporate into life year-round.

6. My kids are happy. This comes with getting down on the floor for tickles, puzzle doing, play doh squishing (well, at the table for that one), book reading, and lots and lots of body movement. When they get cranky and pick on one another, that's a sure sign that I'VE dropped the ball and need to get them involved in something fun.

7. My husband is happy. This is a delicate balance of leaving him alone for awhile (he's an introvert, I'm an extrovert) to let him do his own thing on the computer or in the garage/garden/guitar/whatever and doing things with him like watching a movie/working in the yard/etc. Sometimes this just involves me taking the kids for a walk so they stop climbing Daddy Mountain. Other times it involves getting the kids into the kitchen to work with us to make a big breakfast as a family.

When I first put together this list, I thought that #6 and #7 were totally dependent on the first five items. Yet, the more I think about it, each piece holds significance and #5 and #6 have strong pulls on the other areas of my life. They are all quite interlocked. I guess they have to be connected in order for me to feel balance - if they weren't, life would be even more crazy - like swimming through a pit of balls - than the current balance board exercise I feel my life to be.

Whew! Did you make it through all of that? Good!

Now . . . please let me know by leaving a comment - what makes YOU feel balanced?

I'm off to spend some time with my husband now that we've both had our half hour or so on our computers and then I get to dive into a new book. *Happy Sigh* Hooray for balance!


teacherwoman said...

Great post! love the new look!

J~Mom said...

That is a really good question!!! I am going to think through it! :>) Loved your list!

LifeMadeGreat | Juliet said...


This is a lovely post and wonderful thoughts. Some really different ideas on balance.
Crumbs, it's made me think!
Not sure whether I have balance or not. I need to look at this!


ria said...

A lot of what balances you, balances me! Swap 'husband' for boyfriend, and leave out the kids, and the rest is pretty much the same. Great blog, just discovered it, sure to return soon!