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Why I Don't Believe in Balance

Updated: Aug 27, 2023



If balance is possible, then why can no one ever achieve it? If a person pops to your mind that you believe has, I would bet they truly haven't. Likely what they have actually achieved is alignment.


You will hear people say, "I need more balance in my life." You have probably said it. I have definitely said it. But what do we actually mean when we say it? The context is usually when someone has reached the point burnout. They're tired. They feel neglected. They don't feel like a person.


In our minds, balance will make everything better. We talk about work/life balance, along with other types of balance (talking/listening, eating healthy/fun eating, hustle/rest). Here is the thing though, our needs are deeply personal. One person can work 50 hours a week and feel deeply satisfied while another will feel completely depleted. We treat balance like is always this 1:1 ratio.


"Am I talking too much? Am I working too much? Am I thinking too much? Am I spending too much?"


YOU DECIDE. You are a different person. You have a different calling. You like different things.


Here is what I believe in, purpose.


This is what I believe about purpose:


We are all designed differently and that difference was intentional. We bring unique service and beauty to the world. We are all individual, and are meant to be that way. When we come together, it is so much more fun, nuanced, exciting, and beautiful.


Here is the thing:


For something to be important, it can't be equally important as everything else is.


Have you ever heard the saying, "When everything is highlighted then nothing is?" Well, if everything is important, then nothing is.


In your life, you do not need to have the same values as others, believe in the same causes, or present your personality into the world the same way. God is not mass producing lives.


You need to live in alignment. You need to live in agreement with your soul.


So, how do we live in alignment?


Let's talk about alignment in 3 distinct areas: needs, personality, and purpose.


Living in Alignment:


Needs


Let's start by saying your needs along with everyone else's needs are 100% personal. It has been said that there are needs we all share, like, the need for certainty, variety, significance, connection, growth, and contribution and additionally Maslow developed a framework for different types of needs such as, physiological, safety, belonging, esteem, and self-actualization, but within these frameworks, the way these needs present themselves is completely individual.


To live in alignment is to know this and to live this.


The two ways I believe we get out of alignment in this area is, first, to assume we all have the same needs. We assume we shouldn't need more sleep than everyone else, or we don’t need to spend the weekend at home rather than going out. Second, we are not aware of our specific needs because we do not see them as important. In this case, we believe our needs are unworthy of our attention, so we never are able to know them well enough to describe them or live by them. For example, we are unable to acknowledge that pessimism drains us because we are not tuned in to how we are feeling when someone is being pessimistic. We are unable to communicate that we need to workout at least five times a week because we are unaware of how grounding exercise is for us.


Keeping this in mind, alignment-living requires us to know we are individuals and our needs are important. We must study ourselves because it is important. We must become fluent in our energy levels. We need to be professionals in our growth. We should be zealous about our relationships, and dedicated to our boundaries.


When we know that our needs are completely individual and take time to observe them, then we live in a way that is healthy for us. We treat ourselves like a holistic person. We cannot be high-performing if we ignore this part of ourselves. If we want any chance at reaching our full potential or maximizing our life, then we must be healthy (emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally). The world will be better for it.


Personality


Luckily since the development and popularization of personality tests such as DISC, the Enneagram, Meyer's Briggs, and the many other personality tests, we now know we are all different. We have learned it is okay to be motivated by different things and that both introverts and extroverts are normal. There are no cookie-cutter personalities. I think we all can get on board with this.


So what trips us up here? What throws us out of alignment in this area?


Let's start with this, we are terrified of being rejected. We believe the pain of rejection is more painful than the pain of being inauthentic. Maybe we have never weighed these two against one another, but when we live in-authentically, our action reveals our truth. We believe real rejection is more painful. Real rejection is emphasized for this reason: we still get rejected when we are trying to be like everyone else, but it doesn't feel nearly as personal because it is a mask. They are rejecting the mask, not us.


Here is the thing though, I would like to propose: living inauthentic is more painful than living authentically and being rejected by others. Here is why: You are living in a constant state of self-rejection and that pain really doesn't ever go away.


You can move past and overcome the rejection of others if you enjoy yourself, but no amount of love from others will heal self-hatred.


To live in alignment is to live authentically, knowing that rejection comes with the territory of being human. You need to know friend, you can overcome rejection through the power of self-respect.


So, what have you been trying to hide? What parts have you been diluting?


You do not need to stifle your freedom just because someone else hasn't found theirs. After all, free people, free people.


Side note: I am talking about personality characteristics and quirks. I am not talking about ethical or moral issues. This is not permitting you to go off on people if you have explosive anger. I just want to be clear about that. Additionally, I am also not suggesting to never compromise or be accommodating. I am just saying to lead with your real personality, and choose to accommodate later.


Purpose


You care about things that others do not care that much about. I am sure you have noticed it. That thing that fires you up so much that others feel you are too intense. It could be something you are completely dedicated to that others may tell you that they would have given up long ago. It could be an area where you are moved with deep compassion, but others are not. It could be a message you must share because it is fire like in your bones. Sometimes others won't care or get it, and when that is the case, it may be an indicator that you are aligning with your purpose.


We can't solve all the world’s problems, but we may be able to solve one problem. If we can solve one problem for one person, that is still significant. It makes sense that we are compelled towards one thing more than another because we can't do everything. We have to have priorities. We need to care about something more than everyone else does. That is how powerful things get done.


If this makes complete sense, then why do we get out of alignment in this area of our life?


There are many reasons but I am going to list three.


1. We doubt ourselves.

2. We believe our purpose isn't spectacular enough.

3. We believe our purpose is too hard.


Each of these reasons could have their own blog, honestly. Here is what I am going to say: what you do matters. Pursuing your purpose is deeply significant. It is worth doing hard things. It does not have to be celebrated, flashy, or noticed. Purpose only needs to be impactful. If the purpose is in you then so are the resources. If you need help finding your purpose, get a life coach. It is worth it, friend, to live your purpose.


All of these areas are way too individual to strike a perfect balance. Balance is something outside of you. It is vague and undefined. Alignment is a much more satisfying way to live. If you pay close attention to it, you will find it. Alignment is in you, friend.



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