Why I'm Learning To Evaluate "Balance" Day To Day
Balance is such an ethereal concept, isn't it? It's never as simple as work-life, it's more like "motherhood-marriage-health-creativity-home-x-y-z". If you visualize that symbolic balance scale, it's constantly fluctuating with two sides let alone several. It's just not a stationary solve.
I'm lucky to usually have a wonderful nanny with Bodie on Mondays and Tuesdays, so I can cleanly compartmentalize creative and consulting work. We've been traveling, and she's been away these past few weeks, so it's been a bit of tug of war between Mother Untitled and Bodie, with Bodie usually coming out on top. Something had to give, so I intentionally sidelined time with my friends and on self-care. Somethings were forced to give, and meaningful time with my husband has fallen a bit by the wayside because I spend my evenings catching up on writing and e-mail.
I had a moment of throwing my hands up, but then I looked toward next week once she returns. I did an audit on what I felt I was missing at the current moment. I made a lengthy to-do list to make my two days back in my workspace productive. I asked Dan to come home on some evenings next week, so I could get to dinners with girlfriends I haven't seen. I scheduled a daytime lunch date with Dan.
For women who are full-time mothering, full-time working or somewhere in between, chasing an elusive constant state of balance can feel daunting. I find comfort in approaching it as fluid and not fixed. It leaves room for unexpected changes so I can re-evaluate day to day or week to week. Then it's just about making sure I feel good, productive and happy on the balance in any year. It lets me have a week or a month where the house is a bit of a mess, or I'm a less than giving partner or I'm an out of touch friend without re-thinking my whole life.
In thinking more about that symbolic pan scale, it isn't designed to be unmoving or constantly level; it's just intended to return to center in the end.
What does this conversation bring up for you? Do you lean toward a more structured approach to managing the different aspects of your life or are you open to re-evaluating week to week?
Featured Image via Freedom State