Picture a triangle. At the top you have your health and in the bottom two corners opposite of each other you have relationships and career. All three are important pieces in the puzzle of our happiness and when all three are flourishing well individually and together we find ourselves in our own special type happy place.
Unfortunately it is not always that easy to keep our relationships afloat, our career expanding and growing as our skills and talents do, and our health in prime shape. All of these things take time and when you are working 40 hours a week, spending time with your friends, and trying to work out, pack healthy meals, and keep your mind right through meditation something starts to slack.
For everyone it’s something different. For me it’s relationships. I throw myself into my work because it is my passion and I keep my mind and body in tip top shape because I can feel the positive difference in my life when I keep my blood pumping and my meditation audio rolling.
I don’t go on dates. Calls to my family are fewer and farther between. I’m asleep before my roommates come home. I say no to more fun activities than I should.
Some of us immediately start to slack on our health regime-foregoing the gym for an extra few hours at our boyfriend’s house or leave our jobs a few hours later to work on that big project at work. Others prioritize their friends and health and suddenly find themselves in a rut when they realize they don’t like the job they’ve been at for the past 3 years.
There is always a tipping point when our triangle collapses. It can’t be held up by a weak floor or wall and when either our health, relationships, or career are faltering we suddenly find ourselves in a heap on the floor because things just aren’t balanced.
We wouldn’t hear the word balance so much if it wasn’t so important. Everyone preaches it because it is an incredible way to find your happy place. When you are balanced you can feel the support of the world around you and when you can feel this support you can rise to any occasion.
So how do we make sure that we stick to our routines? That we are able to make time for one without completely losing out on another?
Keep a calendar whether on your phone or a hard copy that you can resort to to see your upcoming schedule. When we can see what is ahead in our week and month we can physically see what we have time for and don’t have time for. If a work project that takes 3 hours is due in three days then maybe you can say yes to going to that concert with your friends. If you normally work out for an hour a day maybe you can bump it down to a half hour for today so that you can spend some extra time on work. Staying organized with a calendar will create a tangible place for you to actually know what you do and don’t have time for, helping you to keep your balance.
Listen to your body
How do we know when we’re sick? Our body tell us by sniffling and sneezing. How do we know when we are tired? Our body tells us by slowing down. How do we know when we are awake and ready to take on the day? Our body tells us by being energized and focused. Listening to your body and what it is telling you on a day to day and even moment by moment basis can pretty much lead you all the way through life. If you’re so tired that you can’t even open your eyes, maybe it’s not such a good time to try to get some work done or to go out with your friends. Your health is slacking and you have to put time into you and resting up in order to be able to put time into anything else. If you’re awake and energized-ride that wave. Don’t choose to sit and watch Netflix for an hour. Go out and take the bull by the horns and get things done and accomplished. Your body is much wiser than we ever give it credit, so learn to listen and follow direction.
Check your happiness radar
On a scale of 1-10 how happy are you right now with your relationships (friends, family, boyfriends/girlfriends)? How happy are you with the state of your body? How happy are you with your mental strength and stamina? How happy are you in your job? Compare all of your answers and see which one is slacking and which is above and beyond. If you answered 1-5 on any of those questions, then there is a part of your triangle that is seriously slacking. Put more time and positive energy into that corner of your triangle. If you answered 6-10 on any of those questions, then you know you have created good habits in that part of your triangle and you should do your best to keep them up. Figure out where you can improve in your relationships, career, and health for a triangle that can hold itself steady no matter what kind of storm comes through.
This triangle isn’t just any triangle, it’s your triangle. It is essentially a triangle of the foundation of your life. As humans we need relationships, we are a social species who thrive on having interaction with others. We also need to sweat, get our blood pumping, and to have the mental capacity to quiet our mind and sit in silence. And of course, we need some type of financial platform-a place that we don’t resent on Monday morning, that we can use as a creative outlet, and a place to do work that we can be proud of.
Starting to balance your triangle today will bring you immense happiness in the near future. If you are feeling overwhelmed, bored, or just plan unhappy you know there’s a balance somewhere that is completely out of whack.
Use these three free tools to find it and fix it. Find the balance within yourself and then sit back and watch the daily improvements in your life. I can promise you, you’ll never regret it.