An ecosystem consists of living and nonliving parts that work together to sustain life. If the system is in balance, then life flourishes. When the parts are out of balance, there are problems.
The same is true for us. We need to find balance in our lives in order to flourish and that can be a challenge. It’s not always possible to find a good balance in the course of a day but we need to figure it out over time.
I like to set goals even though I am retired because I want to be intentional about how I spend my time. I used the Monk Manual website to help me set my yearly goals because they use a combination of doing and being goals. I was familiar with goals that required action but I had never set goals for just being. You can find more about their goal setting process on their blog https://monkmanual.com/blogs/monk-notes. I don’t use their particular journal because I prefer blank journals but if you want to be accountable to this process, it’s a great tool.
Life needs to have moments when we are engaged in doing and then times where we are engaged in being. The right balance helps us to flourish.
Before I engaged in any kind of goal process, I look at how I spend my time. I track what I’m doing and how I’m being to see if my life really reflected my priorities.
Lent is a time to get ourselves back on track. Knowledge is power and know thyself is the way to change. Two overused cliches but true nonetheless.
I find myself making excuses because we are on the road and as we move from one location to another, we don’t have a set routine which can really mess with how I want to live. But excuses are just excuses. We are fortunate to have control over our time and we are supportive of one another.
In my younger days with children and a demanding job, I had to make what felt like a heruculean effort to make any time for myself. Sometimes just brushing my teeth seemed to be a luxury. But when I tracked how I spent my time, I realized I was wasting a lot of it in front of the TV thinking I was resting and that it would give me energy. In reality it sucked the energy right out of me. I found that doing something for myself even for fifteen minutes after the kids went to bed worked to help me balance my life.
Self care is essential to a balanced life. It’s up to us to figure out what that looks like.