As a baby boomer teen born to depression-era parents, I never heard that term once. Didn’t exist back then and, if it had, it would have never come out of my father’s mouth. Hard work was his life, and when he had a day off, he worked. To my dad and those who were his age and older, balance was something you did to your checkbook when the statement arrived.
It wasn’t until the late eighties when this three-word term entered the American lexicon, and it wasn’t popularized until the late nineties. Now those three words are said in conjunction as frequently as pass the salt.
Who doesn’t want to go there, even if only for a weekend visit?
We know what work is. It’s the ‘life’ part of the equation that interrupts the balance.
Life is an all-inclusive term that encompasses our health and fitness, our social relationships, our family time, our personal interests and recreational pursuits, our spiritual growth, etc.
Now what King or Queen lives a fairy tale existence where all of those things by themselves are in balance–not-to-mention, in balance with work?
I confess that my life is rarely ‘in balance’. And I carry around a lot of guilt and angst about that. This weekend, a good friend sent me this video of a brilliant Ted talk. It’s changed my perspective.
I’m certainly not going to stop working hard, nor will I abandon my desire to seek balance with the various aspects of my life. But what I’ve discovered from Dan Thurmon’s inspiring 18-minute presentation is that it’s okay–make that perfectly natural and normal–to be out of balance, as long as I do so on purpose.