I'm not sure playgrounds even exist anymore. When I was a kid (oh no, I said it... I'm officially an adult) we would frequent the swings, slides and merry-go-rounds. But there was one piece of playground equipment that best describes this week's core value of balance; the teeter-totter.
In many ways, I look at my job and my passion as a balance coach. Not so much in terms of improving someone's physical balance, although I do that on occasion. No, I mean more in a complete life sense.
Take a look around at those closest to you. Ask a few questions about how their days have gone. I can almost guarantee you'll get some form of response indicating an imbalance. Some common examples:
"Oh, I slept horribly, so I've been tired all day."
"I've had to run all over town, I'm too busy."
"I didn't eat enough... I'm so hungry!"
"I haven't exercised in 2 months, I feel lazy."
And so it goes. We get busy with life, or maybe more appropriately, life gets busy with us. Before we know it, we're spending too much time awake and not enough time sleeping, too much time running around and not enough resting, too much/too little to eat/drink, etc. You get the idea. We become imbalanced.
My core value is not merely to be balanced. No, that's too simple. It actually states, "Seek out and capture balance in all that you do." I'll be the first to admit that I'm a work in progress. Aren't we all?
I think finding balance in life is easy, but maintaining balance in life, that's where it gets tricky. Even if we were to find the ideal schedule with the perfect activities, meals, driving routes and habits, life has a funny way of throwing curveballs at us. Sometimes it even winds back and hurls an occasional cannonball our way. And boom goes your balance.
In addition, personal growth comes from being out of balance. Think about it. We all know that living in your comfort zone is nice, but you don't learn anything from doing what you're good at. You have to fail to learn. You have to make mistakes to grow. What better way to fail and make mistakes than being out of balance?
The tricky part of my profession is finding out each person's individual desired state and then helping them to attain it. It's surprising how many people don't clearly know what they want out of life. And if they're lucky enough to have that vision, it's disheartening to see how many have stories they tell themselves on why they can't attain it.
Often, we need only take the time to observe our lives objectively so that we may seek out our imbalances. By doing so, we can reallocate our energy to the areas that need more focus, allowing them to even out the metaphorical teeter-totters of our life. This can often magically solve the storytelling dilemma.
As you go about your day, take time to be conscious of your imbalances. What is demanding too much of your time, what are you neglecting because of it? And most importantly, what can you do to bring things back into harmony?
Do you need more sleep? More relaxation? A better sense of time management? Better physical, mental or emotional health? More time for yourself? These are the most common themes I run across every day. And I don't think saying that a vast majority of readers are nodding their heads would be going out on a limb. I certainly hope not, because I might lose my balance.
If you'd like to read more, visit www.FreshEvolutionFitness.com and click the blog titled, "Ebb and flow." In it I discuss in depth how balance affects our health and our growth. I give specific examples of both, as well as tips to seek out your imbalances so you can improve your quality of life.
Andy Frisch, NASM CPT, CES, PES, WFS, IFT, NESTA FNC, is a successful personal trainer and nutrition coach who enjoys working with clients of all shapes, sizes and ages. He currently train clients at Sports Village Fitness in Lebanon, works with clients online at www.FreshEvolutionFitness.com.