Achieving and maintaining balance can be a tricky thing, even for the most gifted amongst us (athletes and non-athletes alike). What does balance mean to you ? There’s always alot of talk about the importance of finding it in our lives, as if it’s something tangible we can hold in our hand, a clearly defined object that must be hiding somewhere, lying in wait for us to finally discover. Balance though, is not a noun, but a verb; not at all static, it is full of action. Kris Holm, pictured here, often epitomizes the word and, if you’ve ever seen the places he can get to on one wheel you’ll agree, but it’s not something he has, as opposed to something he does (for a time anyway).
If you watch Kris in action, you’ll see that balance involves constant action and, more to the point, re-action, to the forever changing elements around him. He certainly makes it look graceful if not easy, but, and I’m sure he’ll attest to this, losing balance is never far away, and the consequences can be painfully obvious and, to the rest of us, obviously painful ! And this is the truth about balance: you have it, you lose it, you find it again. Dot dot dot.
Balance is a state that comes about when we are present to what we do, tuned in, to ourselves and all that’s going on around us. It often takes way more energy to get there, than it does to actually do it. When we suddenly are there, it’s as if all the stars have aligned, time stands still, everything works. ”What a relief, what a joy, what a rush !” we exclaim, and then, WHAM ! we lose it, finding ourselves on the ground/trail/bottle/doctor’s sofa… wondering what the heck went wrong.
For many of us though, we may go for years without ever experiencing this highly coveted sweet-spot. How many times do you hear, “I need to find balance in my life” ? Again though, it’s not a thing we’re looking for, but a state of being. Perhaps if we were to re-phrase the question, from “How do we find balance ?” to “How do we do balance ?” it may help us remember what’s involved, and it may also go a long way to cutting ourselves and each other some much needed slack. Furthermore, as a side-benefit, we might also discover that we actually enjoy the process, not just oft-fleeting end-result.
We can learn to love the dance we do getting there. Let’s call it the “BAL-DANCE”. We all have our own unique version. It’s the dance of work vs. play, service vs. self-care, togetherness vs. solitude, action vs. reflection. Dot dot dot. What does yours look and feel like ? I’d love to hear about it so please share your thoughts and experiences, afterall, we’re all in this dance together.