After a week spent with my toes in the powdered-sugar sand bordering the turquoise waters of the Florida panhandle, I feel refreshed. I don’t know if it’s the rhythmic crashing of the powerful ocean or the endless sand-scrub that does the job, but after a week of constructing sandcastle villages, delving into many books, and soaking in pristine sunsets, I have not an ounce of adrenaline left. The surprisingly wonderful gift of no cell phone or internet access certainly helped, as did the therapeutic sunshine, but the beach vacation for me is always a respite from life.
Today, I am back in the game, and wearing shoes—a start, at least, to reentering the daily-ness of life. But, having time to step away, I came back with renewed vigor for the endless search for balance in life.
Balance. A formidable word, for sure, for how do we really start to find balance?
In my mind, balance is never really achieved, though it is a goal always worth striving for – a sort of integration of the important pieces of a life to fit into a pleasing whole. The place where one element is counterbalanced by another element of life, the opposite effect being lopsided.
So many things become easily lopsided in my world. So many things to juggle: work, family, kids’ schedules, relationships, personal needs, volunteering and involvements, and on and on and on. At the end of the day, it’s easy to sit down and realize so many more things tug at me for my time than I can possibly ever fit into one day. Back to balance.
Saying no is very difficult, especially for some of us. But, saying no to some things is also essential to finding a pleasant balance in life. Choosing one thing over another is the key.
Someone once gave me striking advice: say yes to things that can be done by no one else.
When I carefully consider those things that are most important to me and stick to the things which I love, enjoy, and feel called to do, I find weighing out the other requests for my time much simpler. The balance, of course, always changes. Lopsidedness, I know well, equals too much stress. Nearing balance brings enjoyment.
There is no greater day than one filled with joy … and so, fresh from spring vacation, I know that balance is worth pursuing, relentlessly. For it is there, approaching a balance, that our days may truly shine.