“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.”
I was at a meeting yesterday where a university friend who has known me for thirty years or more asked me if I was a busy as I use to be. My response was that I was not and that I was retired and then reported on what I am currently doing. As I rattled off the list I realized I had lied, I am just as busy as I always was, maybe sometimes even more so. Later as I thought about it I realized that it is not whether what consumes our time is a job or some other activity it is how much of our lives are consumed by our tasks.
In the past I have often touted the value of balance in our lives and that we needed to keep our jobs, our families, and time for ourselves in synch so we could get the most out of the days given to us. Well I now will admit I often don’t practice what I preach. It does not matter if we are working or not, nor if we are too busy or too idle or not, nor if we are in constant hibernation or constantly adventuring. What matters is that we keep or lives in balance. In my case that means better self discipline. It means giving active and leisure time appropriate priorities. It also means being careful to not only to bite off only what I can chew but also biting off only what I need to chew to stay in balance. I have been around long enough to know that we often do less when we try to do more than we should.
I often suggest that as we age we need to stay active and get out as much as we can out of life since there is so much we can do. However I also do understand we move a little slower and sometimes need more rest. What I am finding out is that if we leave the gold in our golden years out so long that it loses its luster we need to bring it in and let rest in order to be repolished occasionally. I would write more but I think I am going to quit and take a polishing nap.
In the meantime here is something for you that I got from the web.
Three simple ways to begin building a greater sense of inner peace and harmony:
1) Quiet time.
One of the first things we tend to sacrifice when we’re busy is our personal time. Instead we devote all of our energy and attention to caring for others, multi-tasking, meeting responsibilities and “being productive.” Over time this depletes our energy and we begin to feel more and more burdened by our responsibilities.
To live a more balanced life, quiet time to yourself is CRUCIAL. You may believe that you don’t have any time available for yourself, but something amazing happens when you consistently MAKE time; you find yourself feeling happier and more energetic, your focus improves – and you still get plenty done!
Beyond making time for things you enjoy, there are other ways to nurture and love yourself on a daily basis. Getting a full 8 hours of sleep (or as much as you personally need) is a great start, as well as eating nutritious food, exercising daily and speaking kindly to yourself.
Have you ever noticed that when you’re really tired or stressed, even the smallest problem can seem like a nightmare? On the other hand, when you’re feeling well-rested and centered, you’re much better able to handle upsets.
Did you know that one of the biggest causes of stress is rigid expectations? We all do it from time to time; get a mental picture of how our lives “should be” – and get really annoyed when our outer circumstances don’t cooperate! One of the biggest gifts you can give yourself is a flexible state of mind. In other words, learn how to detach from unrealistic expectations and go with the flow.
When you have a flexible mind-set, you’re able to deal with crises and problems much more easily because you’re not working against a preconceived notion of how things “should be”. You’re able to tap into your creative problem-solving skills and move through challenges without all the drama and frustration.
Just as your car runs more smoothly and requires less energy to go faster and farther when the wheels are in perfect alignment, you perform better when your thoughts, feelings, emotions, goals, and values are in balance.
Some of us remember when:
Being sent to the drugstore to test vacuum tubes for the TV.
When Kool-Aid was the only drink for kids, other than milk and sodas.
When there were two types of sneakers for girls and boys (Keds & PF Flyers), and the only time you wore them at school, was for “gym.”
When it took five minutes for the TV to warm up.
When nearly everyone’s mom was at home when the kids got there.
When nobody owned a purebred dog.
When a quarter was a decent allowance, and another quarter a huge bonus.
When you’d reach into a muddy gutter for a penny.
When girls neither dated nor kissed until late high school, if then.
When your mom wore nylons that came in two pieces.
When all of your male teachers wore neckties and female teachers had their hair done, everyday.
When you got your windshield cleaned, oil checked, and gas pumped, without asking,….. for free, every time and you didn’t pay for air. And you got trading stamps to boot!
When laundry detergent had free glasses, dishes or towels hidden inside the box.
When any parent could discipline any kid, or feed him, or use him to carry groceries, and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it.
When it was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents.
When they threatened to keep kids back a grade if they failed…and did!
When being sent to the principal’s office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited a misbehaving student at home.
Billing’s Law: Live within your income, even if you have to borrow to do so.
She said she learned this from the kids:
•There is no such thing as child-proofing your house.
•If you spray hair spray on dust bunnies and run over them with roller blades, they can ignite.
•A 4 year-old’s voice is louder than 200 adults in a crowded restaurant.
•If you hook a dog leash over a ceiling fan the motor is not strong enough to rotate a 42 pound boy wearing pound puppy underwear and a superman cape. It is strong enough however to spread paint on all four walls of a 20 by 20 foot room.
•Baseballs make marks on ceilings.
The mother of three notoriously unruly youngsters was asked whether or not she’d have children if she had it to do over again. “Sure,” she replied, “but not the same ones.”
Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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