Ever since you were a little kid you have been trying to test and improve your balance. At the earliest stages you would walk on the side of the curb or those concrete blocks throughout the parking spaces of the lot. You would step up onto one, then extend your arms and slowly put one foot in front of the other. You would continue until you reached the end of the block then either turn around or jump down as a parent called after you to hurry up and follow them. As you grew older, you stopped jumping up on the blocks. Why? For most people it is because it became to easy. They already knew they could do it and so one day they simply saw the concrete block or curb and walked right past it and that became the new norm.
As we grow older we move past balancing as a playtime. Now we try to juggle working a full time job or two, plus raise kids, plus stay in shape, plus all of these other things, just thinking about is starting to stress me out. Why did we shift from balancing being a fun natural thing we did, to this stressful rush through the day style (so we can come home and relax go to sleep then wake up and start it all over again)? At what point did it stop being a game? And at what point did it become so hard?
The basic function of balance is two separate mechanisms. Push and Pull. There are many other names for these mechanisms such as light and dark, feeling and apathy, male and female, and of course good and evil (or cats and dogs if you are an animal person like me). The list goes on and on. I am sure you can think of a few more opposites in a matter of seconds than what I have listed here. The shift here is that at some point while we were growing older we started to complicate things and that is when life stopped being enjoyable and that is when things started to get so damn hard.
Why does this happen? Some psychologists believe that you have been “online” in other words self aware since as early as the age of two (discussing the different levels of self awareness is far beyond the scope of this post but it does make for insightful reading). Around that time or a few years later you began to understand what was acceptable and unacceptable social behavior. The main feeling you associated here is embarrassment. You noticed the people who were able to deal with embarrassment the best were also liked the best. And when it comes down to it, fitting in with social norms is something we all strive for. There is literally a part of your brain that has evolved to scream at you when you begin to color outside the lines. What does that mean for the thoughts you have?
So how can we apply the idea of balance to our lives while keeping it simple and fun? I like to use the zoom technique. Similar to the zoom on google maps I can dive in deeper to look at the separate pieces then pull back out to see the entirety of the whole. For example I zoom in on my workout to see that I need to workout my chest (push) and my back (pull) then zoom out again to see how this will affect my body as a whole. I zoom in on my marketing to see that I need to create content (pull) but also I need to network (push). I can zoom in on my relationship with my wife and see that I need to listen and understand what she is saying (pull) then after I fully understand I say my point of view (push). What would happen if you only pushed or only pulled? What would happen if you zoomed in, but never zoomed out?
This is an extremely powerful technique that will allow you to zoom in and bend all the areas of your life for the better. Remember to zoom out again to shift back to a state of simplicity and fun. Please leave a comment or send me a personal message telling me how you applied this technique to your own situation.
Daniel Morris, CATCC Life Coach