Self Improvement, Uncategorized

How to Live a Balanced Life

To live a more balanced life has been my main goal for a long time. It is the biggest challenge for me. I find myself doing, thinking, feeling everything to extremes – either too much or not enough. My life feels like a pendulum. 

What can we do to find that balance? Of course, many different aspects come into play here. 

The first challenge is to set priorities correctly. A whole article can be written about setting priorities. But let’s assume here we got that right by now. 

The second aspect will be setting realistic goals –by that, I mean attainable goals. I find myself too often setting unrealistic goals and then getting anxious because I am not able to keep up with them. 

Third, getting good in setting effective boundaries. 

Photo by Bekir Dönmez on Unsplash


The biggest challenge is to allocate time for ourselves. Yet it is crucial that we do that and not compromise. Even at the retirement age, I find myself challenged to remain balanced. It has been beneficial to set a schedule for the day with several breaks between the scheduled tasks. I have written about how to deal with “pressures” in life. Many of the pressures are self-induced and can be eliminated by creating and keeping the right balance. 

What would that look like in our emotional life — emotional equilibrium–would be another subject to dig into and write about. Emotional intensity — I wish I would not be so intense. It’s causing me undue stress and problems. How can I control that? How can we regulate our emotions? What if we never learned how to do that? How can we correct it later in our lives? What works best? 

 I found an excellent article on “The Ascent” — titled “To Regulate our Emotions” by Michael Patanella. This article is outlining the practical steps anyone can take. Being able to regulate one’s emotions  I believe, is the single most important skill one must develop to have a successful life.

The book “Emotional Agility” written by Susan David Ph.D. talks about having flexibility and the capacity to respond with the right emotions (of our choosing) in any given situation. 

She says “In fact, negativity is normal. This is a fundamental fact. We are wired to feel negative at times. It’s simply a part of the human condition. 

Too much stress on being positive is just one more way our culture figuratively overmedicates the normal fluctuations of our emotions, just the way society often literally overmedicates rambunctious children and women with mood swings.”

To keep a healthy balance in our lives, we need to know ourselves in order to use the right levers to direct our lives. 

What if we are dealt with an unexpected blow and everything is turned upside down? Especially in circumstances like these, it is crucial to be steadfast in our thoughts and emotions to regain our balance quickly If we didn’t develop this ability to balance ourselves before, it will be very difficult now to deal with challenging circumstances.

Many times I find myself “overdoing it,” and it always causes a problem. We tend to think more is better once we found a solution to a problem. As an example, I decided to drink the right amount of water. I ended up drinking too much, and it caused a real problem. After I reduced the amount to what my body really needed, the problem went away. It just showed me how that happens so often. I even have a problem with my health program. I exercise too much–get too tired and then stop.

That makes no sense. Consistency – Balance is the key in all areas of our lives. We don’t need to know everything — we should think about what we need to know. Curiosity, ambition can get the better of us. Again the key is keeping a balance. Being curious and ambitious are great traits–but if they are too much or not enough, we’ll encounter problems. 

All or nothing is a common and counterproductive approach.

We, too, need to find the perfect balance between challenge and competence, so we’re neither complacent nor overwhelmed but are instead excited, enthusiastic and invigorated by challenges

Being a fanatic – I caught myself becoming fanatic about an issue — meaning I got too obsessed about the idea that there was no room for anything else. Off-balance. It is unhealthy. It is an ongoing process to make sure we keep a balance in every facet of our lives. 

Diet

I struggled for several years to manage my Diabetes but did not succeed. I needed to go on medication which is also a problem in the long term. A couple of weeks ago I decided to make my own individualized program. Of course, I stayed under the care of my physician.

Instead of letting go of all my favorite and sometimes not so healthy foods – I decided to include them in my meal plan. This eliminated any cravings and because I balanced these foods with healthy foods it did not cause the sugar spikes as before. An additional benefit was — that I did not have the sense of deprivation and could always look forward to my next meal. I schedule very regular meals now and never allow myself to get too hungry.

There are too many books to count written about all the different ways to eat better and over the years I have seen, that most of the books did not focus on finding the right balance in our nutrition. 

We have moved too far away from using “common sense” and trusting ourselves to figure out what is right for us. 

Exercise: I never enjoyed exercise. Since I developed my own regiment – one that I actually enjoy and proved to be far more effective than I first thought.– Small exercises throughout the day to work all my muscles. I take it easy but I am consistent and gradually increase my physical activities — while making sure I am having fun! Getting my regular dose of vitamin D (sunshine) also seems to have a good effect. Gradually making all these small changes in my daily habits show visible improvements.. My ultimate goal is to get rid of medications entirely –which is possible– and live a happy and healthy life!

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