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Doin' the BaLaNcInG Thing
Beth Pugh ©2001

How often is it that you see someone who truly has their life in balance? What exactly does that mean? Balance is something that we hear a lot about these days. It sometimes seems like we are able to concentrate on one or two areas of life and then let the rest go.

How expensive is having an unbalanced life? Speaking from experience, it can be very costly. I went through a time when I really needed to focus on my emotional well-being. Because I had no reserves of energy left over, I decided to forego my exercise routine and it affected my physical health. It took a toll on me and I am still recovering from the imbalance that was there. That's no fun.

Or how about the person who is so caught up in the monetary rewards from his/her career? They may have an impressive lifestyle, but what kind of life do they have? In the words of a popular country song, "That don't impress me much."

You know, it doesn't have to be one way or another. You can dedicate yourself to having a balanced and fulfilling life. It takes some re-learning and some time (21 days actually) to make new ideas into habits. That is certainly achievable.

Let's look at 4 broad areas to concentrate your efforts on.

The first is your WELL-BEING. In this, I include your health ... physically, spiritually, emotionally and mentally. Have you had a physical or been to the dentist on a regular basis? Do you abuse caffeine, alcohol or any other substances? Can you walk to the mailbox without panting? Do you need to nurture your spirit in some way? How about adrenaline - is it what runs your life instead of you?

The second area is RELATIONSHIPS. This includes relationships with family, friends, coworkers and others in your community. When is the last time you told your parents that you loved them? How about spending an afternoon making a child feel like the most special person in the world? And how do you uplift your significant other? Can your friends count on you to be there for them? Have you moved on and forgiven anyone in your past that you need to? Have you taken responsibility for any hurts you may have inflicted on someone else? How do you impact your community?

Then there is the ole money issue, FINANCES. People sometimes misquote and say that 'money is the root of all evil.' That Biblical verse (1 Timothy 6:10) is actually, "The love of money is the root of all evil." There is a huge difference in those two statements. When used with integrity money positively impacts the quality (not quantity of material possessions) of our lives.

So, what is it then - does money run your life? Do you handle money is a responsible way? Do you pay back what you owe? Do you give to others in a spirit of generosity? Do you know your worth? How about a financial plan - do you have one? When your money is not being handled properly, look for it to affect other areas of your life including well-being and your relationships.

Lastly, let's examine your ENVIRONMENT. What does your world look like? Are your papers in order? What about your yard? Does you car need to be repaired? Is your home decorated in a comfortable way to you? Do you need to clean out the closets or drawers? Are your clothes a reflection of who you are? These things all drain your energy when they are not in order. Think about how great it feels when your house is clean and you have ample space. This pertains to your work environment as well. Is it conducive to enhancing your productivity and creativity?

There is a very simple way to monitor how you are doing with balancing your life. I use this with clients and it is very effective. Purchase a regular size notebook with 4 tabs. Have a section for well-being, relationships, money and environment (or design your own). Notice and document anytime you spend time and energy on one of those areas. Just write down what you did and the date.

For example:

Money 6/7/00 balanced checkbook

At the end of the week, look and see which sections have more entries and which have fewer. The ones that are lacking are where you need to concentrate more energy.

Of course, there is the old lack of time thing. I know. From experience, I can tell you that the better you are able to gain some balance in these areas, you will find the time because you will not always be running around trying to catch up. And as always, [my pet peeve] turn off that TV and you will find you have more time and your mind will focus in a more powerful and clear way.

Balance is not as elusive as people think it is. We all have busy lives and responsibilities, but when we start with ourselves and begin to reclaim our time, life does begin to flow. Try it and see!

About the Author:

Coach and life enthusiast, Beth Pugh, of Bright Side Coaching publishes a delightful newsletter that is geared towards a happier and more balanced life. I have subscribed and am thoroughly enjoying it. Visit her website at: Bright Side Coaching to read more of her articles and to sign up.

CJ's Weekly Poll - March #4
How Balanced Do You Feel Your Life Is?



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