Balance is good and bad
Balance is often assumed and described as work-life balance. Images on the internet are of someone walking a tightrope or multi-tasking. (Side note - if you multi task, you are probably not good at mindfulness as its the opposite!) When I am asked how to get more balance, my answer has significantly changed from 15 years ago when I started to talk on this topic.
Balance is more deeper. More complicated. And even more testing now than ever before in our ‘I have it all but I am more stressed’. Having an action plan with your coach that says go home early 2 nights a week from work will do some things to improve more time at home but is short lived.
My view is that balance is about looking at both sides of the coin or the bar. It is about balancing the good and the bad. When you learn to look at both sides of an issue, it balances your mind. You can the downsides in the great things and the upsides in the challenges.
I have not attended a wedding in ages. This year I got to attend a beautiful wedding. Then last week I got to attend a funeral which I had not been to one either. Balance.
The person that really upsets you at work is the one we learn to come up with strategies on how to manage our working relationship with. These skills we learn (sometimes the hard way) help us with our spouse, children and other people that will continue to come into our life to challenge us.
The person that promised to pay 50% of the bill with you never sends the money. You become resentful. When we are ready to get over it, it makes us a better negotiator with money in future both at work and at home. Balance.
In my experience, if you can learn to balance the positives and the negatives as you go, it takes a lot of anxiety away. When I do a great presentation, I now find 3 things I could have done better. When my presentation is not great, I find 3 things I did well.
When I yell at my kids (I would like you to believe I don’t but on occasions I do. Sometimes hormonal but mainly they are difficult to negotiate with and crazy), they learn they have gone too far. What I learn is humility and I have to apologise. The rule in our house is if you yell, you owe that person 1 hour of your time. I have done massages, cooked favourite meals, climbed at a ninja park (uhh!). Sometimes I can feel my kids ‘egging’ me on so I owe them an hour! But I learn as I yell. They learn too. Balance.
When I have to performance manage a staff member who is being unreasonable in their behaviours (and I am trying not to let the butterflies in my stomach make me vomit), I know this makes me a better leader and sets examples for other staff. Balance.
Next time you fall in love with someone, find 3 things about them even if absurd that are weird. Balance.
If you really dislike someone in your life, find 3 things about them you like (even if they don’t to you, they may to do others). Balance.
Next time you yell at the kids (try not to, but if you do), you will both learn. Balance.