Don’t believe the work/life balance hype.
Balance is a myth. Equilibrium is not.
I’m going to confess some of my inner crazy to you.
I feed my dogs this all-natural, organic dehydrated food that comes in an 8-lb bag. Twice a day I dig out a 1/3 cup full of dehydrated goodness for each of them. Some days the scoop brings out mostly big lumps of dehydrated vegetables and meat. Other days, the scoop brings up mostly powder - more vegetables, herbs, and the other things that go into the food.
I used to worry that each scoop of food had a proper balance of powdery ingredients and larger chunks — because apparently I am more than a little insane, and didn’t have enough to worry about. And if a scoop was out of balance, I would dump it back in and try again.
I eventually realized that over the course of consuming the whole bag of food, the dogs would get the nourishment they need no matter what was in each scoop. It doesn’t matter if each bowl of food is a little bit different from the one before.
This is work/life balance. Maybe each day doesn’t have the proper balance between work, family, self-care, and creative pursuits. It’s possible that even each week doesn’t possess all of the elements we need in the right proportions. But I’ll bet that if we look at a month or even go so wide as to consider a whole quarter, we might see a much more balanced picture.
There’s no escaping that there are times when we have to push harder at work, and that’s OK. As long as we’re taking care of ourselves while we do, that’s fine. Because there are times when we really focus on our family life, and times when they both take a back seat to our creative work.
But this isn’t balance. In fact, it’s distinctly out of balance.
This is equilibrium. Balance is static, frozen. Equilibrium is dynamic, moving.
So if my family, or my work, or my creative endeavors are asking a little more of me at this moment, I can be gentle with myself. I know that it’s only for a season, and I will do what I need to do to maintain equilibrium.
Peace to you on this beautiful Wednesday,