Search the Internet for these terms and you will find at least 500 million hits on finding Balance. “Finding a Work-Life Balance”; “Find that elusive balance between work and life”; “10 simple ways to find balance and get your life back”. We’re all looking for it. Hoping to find balance and regain “control” over our lives.
But what 16 years of marriage, business ownership and parenting has taught me is we can’t find anything if we don’t look in the right place. You can sign up for Yoga, but it’s not there. You can buy new runners and join a running group, but it’s not there. You can join the Parent committee at your child’s school, but you won’t find it there either.
Balance begins inside of us. It exists in the chaos of Laundry day. It’s there when the baby won’t sleep through the night. It’s there when your 3 year old won’t eat their vegetables and your teenager got caught skipping class. It’s there when the car won’t start.
Balance is when what is going on inside of us stays rock solid regardless of what we have going on on the outside. Balance is when your toddler loses it in the grocery store after holding it together all day, and you gather them up and walk to the car, and order a pizza from your cell because you needed those groceries in order to make supper. Balance is when you see that tomorrow is another day and that sometimes kitchen disasters happen, and sometimes the basement floods. But you’re still okay.
Where does that Balance come from? We create it, and we re-create it every day. It starts by being okay with who we are, and accepting the we are the best we can be (so far), and that we are doing our best, with what we know (right now). The biggest roadblock to being okay with ourselves is comparison.
It is said that Comparison is the thief of Joy. And for so many of us, comparison stars with pregnancy (or not getting pregnant!). Others feed it (well meaning of course), “Why did you wait so long?” “Why are you getting pregnant so quickly after getting married?” And then stories of pregnancy, and delivery. People want to know your birth plan, and the comparison continues. Midwife? Home Birth? C-section? Blah Blah Blah! And then baby comes… Hair, weight, length, feeding… We won’t go there. That is a post for another day!
Later on it continues with questions about going back to work, daycare, nannies…. Activities, preschool, kindergarten, vacations! It never ends!
But it can. Stop Comparing. Look at what you are surrounded by, and look inside you, you are okay. You are doing just fine. Stop comparing and it brings incredible peace. It brings back Joy. It allows you to create Balance.