It’s the thing we all want to achieve. Not just in the moment. Not just on one aspect. We wanna reach it in all aspects. That’s just what I want anyway. ‘Cause when you get that, you reach real freedom.
Balance has always been the keyword. It’s not just about succeeding greatly in your business or job. Or excelling in sport. Or spending time with great friends and having a blast. It’s about putting them all into the mix, and shaking them up in different proportions whenever it’s necessary
Gaining balance is tricky, but essential. Maintaining it especially. Do something you love to much and you start to hate it. Work passionatie on your business for weeks, and then feel empty when you’re done, cuz you’ve neglected all other aspects of your life. Spend a lot of time with friends doing whatever, and suddenly getting restless for not feeling productive. It’s a tricky thing.
The more you grow up, the more you get aware of these things and your life seems to get more imbalanced. Focussing on your career too much can trigger you to get obsessed suddenly on a new hobby like music, sports, cooking or a religion.
When we we’re kids it was easy. When you were hungry, you ate. When you were thirsty you drank. When you needed to rest, you went to sleep. You did what you wanted, cried for it, begged for it until you got what you wanted.
Nowadays we don’t’ do what we want so much. Feeling obliged by a sense of responsibility to keep working, or feeling obliged to see friends of family, you do it.
Sometimes you work all day very excitedly. And then suddenly at 10pm when you are done, you get completely lonely. Friends gone to bed, or already having other plans, you end up sitting alone on the couch watching sitcoms. While the minute before you where feeling on top of the world achieving, or working towards your goals.
So how do you gain balance. And more important: how do you gain total satisfaction? It’s not some magic trick, drug, pill or having all your desires handed to you. It’s actually quite simpel.
I think it’s a formula. It’s not a lineair or straight one. Do these three things in one day and you will feel satisfied. Then have a closer look on how and when you do them.
- Being effective in reaching your goals. I’m not saying productive. That’s just another word for doing a lot of things. Effective means completing the tasks that are most important for moving forward. Making that important call, finishing those end papers, sending that proposal or booking that ticket. And yes, those are mostly the ones you have put off the longest. Not sure what to do first? The thing that scares you the most. Do them first, put all distractions and excuses aside, and don’t’ stop till you’ve completed them.
- Do a relaxation activity that clears your head. Sports are generaly the best, since it’s get your blood flowing, you breath better and need to be focussed. But it’s not limited to that. It can be making music, painting or playing a game. As long as you can let everything go, loose yourself in it and feel relaxed afterwards.
- Spending quality time with others. Go meet some friends, go out with your special loved one or just hang on the couch and have a laugh with your best friends or cuddle with your sugar.
As I said, it’s not a straight forward formula. The order of when and how you do it is not relevant. Had a lot of work recently? Start your day doing something that relaxes you. Been alone a lot? Meet somebody for breakfast first thing in the morning.
Then it’s time to look at how you do those three elements. How you wanna do them, and what you wanna focus on will differ from time to time and it’s good to be aware of that and reflect on what’s most important for you now.
Sometimes you wanna really kill it at work. Sometimes you wanna be effective in booking that vacation, cleaning your house or buying that car. It’s about your goals on that moment. Does your job not make you feel satisfied? Go back to dreaming mode when you where a kid, and start doing what you’ve always wanted to do. Sometimes that means quitting, starting your own business or do something completely different.
The order in relaxation and being social also varies. Been really focussed on writing something at work? Being social is what you can use more then doing sports. Been busy talking to people all day for your job, negotiating and having tough conversations? Doing some sports where you are alone and focussed will do the trick better then going for beers.
The way you want to be social also varies. Spend a lot of time with your buddy’s drinking beer and doing crazy stuff? Time to get those ladies in the pictures. Been a lot on romantic activities with your girl- or boyfriend? Time to meet up with some buddy’s and go crazy. Hangin out a lot with the same people can make you dissatisfied as well. Go out and meet some new people, even do it alone. And if you’ve missed the connection with true friends? Go on and give them a call.
You see there is a lot of detail in getting balance. The further you are on your way to reaching satisfaction, the more you start to feel the small imbalances within those options to spend your day.
Now it’s not about planning everything to the detail. It’s just about being aware. And acting on it. Planned a day of effective work and it does not make you happy? Know that you can do something else, and that doing that exactly helps you to be more effective later.
While life seems to be so complicated, it’s actually quite easy. And that is something you must never forget. Whenever you feel un-satisfied, or imbalanced, be like the animal. Eat when you are hungry. Drink when you are thirsty. Sleep when you are done.