on balance

 

2015. A new year. New beginnings. Resolutions. People striving to be the best possible versions of themselves. How can you not love that? I hopelessly believe in resolutions because so long as you are working on bettering yourself, the measurable goal doesn't matter so much as the journey involved. After a lot of reflection, I think I've settled on my sole resolution this year: Lose balance.

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If I were to be honest, discouragement comes in waves. And more often than not, it has to do with silly, contrite things that don’t have much to do with the bigger picture. I get bummed if I haven’t written anything worthwhile in months, if I haven’t exercised in more than three days, if I can’t remember the last time I surfed, if I’m not listening to my body, etc. These feelings of guilt can be attributed to this ever-present, rarely fulfilled desire for balance

Hey, I live in Encinitas, I know a thing or two about people’s need for balance. It’s the core principle of yoga. It’s why we wake up early to go sweat it out at the gym (...or not), it’s why we choose brussel sprouts over mac-n-cheese (ok, not all of us). We know that anything in excess isn’t healthy. 

But I want to challenge that notion and offer the possibility that perhaps we were created to get off balance sometimes. That maybe losing balance for the right things is part of living this desirable, balanced life. 

Malcolm Gladwell proposed an interesting theory that to become an expert in anything, you must devote 10,000 hours to that thing. It makes me think, were history shapers as obsessed with balance as we are? Did MLK Jr. put his cause on hold so that he could make time to work out and cook healthy meals? Did Mother Teresa spend as much “treat yo’self” time as she did in service to others? An exaggeration to be sure, but my point is that in order to live an extraordinary life, we have to lose balance for worthy things. For love. For service. For a commitment to greatness. For a desire to challenge and innovate and make things better. 

My sole “resolution” for 2015 is that I would start losing balance for the right things. That my need to go to the gym wouldn’t cut into slow, mindful mornings. That my need for “relaxation time” (aka binge-watching Reign on Netflix) would not come before writing something that can change the status quo. I want to jump headfirst into serving and loving others and not dwell on what I “should” be doing. There are certain things worth losing balance over, and I encourage you to find yours. 

There’s an old saying—fine, it’s from Eat Pray Love, no judgment, ok?—that to lose balance for love is part of living a balanced life. I think there’s truth to that. Commit yourself to the people and things that you love – and I mean wildly, unapologetically throw yourself into the fire for it – and never look back.


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