I’ve been thinking a lot about balance as of late. It seems to be the distress of our time to be surrounded by extremes. We gorge ourselves over holidays and then starve ourselves in the new year. We work ourselves into the ground during the week and then can’t get off the couch for the whole weekend. We give all our energy away and then can’t understand why our own lives are a mess. It seems that we are always looking for the next Thing that will help us, or fix us, but the problem is that we often look outside ourselves for it. We are so out of tune with our own bodies; we’re constantly taking in information and not giving ourselves time to sit with it and process it, or to feel stillness or silence. We rarely create space and time for ourselves. I am guilty of this myself. It was in contemplating these things that I then began to explore where I am learning and desiring balance in my own life.
I’m learning balance in my rest. Having a work/life balance has always been important to me; I am not the workaholic type. I enjoy and need rest and time to myself. However, my rest time is often very unproductive, and rather lazy. I forget to use my time towards the things I say I love, like writing, practicing French, or baking. This is something I always struggle with, but want to get better at.
I’m learning balance in my spiritual practice. I see many people who are all or nothing in their faith (whatever that faith is), and I just can’t reconcile that for myself. I want to find a balance where I can see and accept truth for what it is, no matter where it comes from, while still being strong in what I believe. I want to be confident in my convictions, but open and willing to listen.
I’m learning balance in how I eat. For almost my whole life, I’ve been able to eat whatever I want, and I rather scorned “health” food in favor of weekly nachos, pizza, and cheeseburgers. Now I’ve been introduced to super delicious healthy foods that I love. I feel good about what I’m putting in my body, and am interested in eating to be healthy, but I don’t place restrictions on what I won’t or can’t eat. I’m trying to find that middle ground.
I’m learning balance when it comes to how I care for my body. I’ve never been athletic, so I’ve never exercised. I hated it. But I’m learning what I really dislike is running, so I’m finding other ways to strengthen my body and see what I’m capable of. For me, that’s yoga and barre classes. I love the way that it makes me feel more in tune with what my body needs, and I love feeling stronger and less achy.
I’m also learning more natural, holistic ways to treat ailments, and products to use in beauty care that won’t harm me in the long run. I’m still a firm believer in doctors and know they are vital, but I’m interested in finding that in-between place where holistic, more Eastern health care meets the more traditional Western health care.
This whole balance thing has really taken up a lot of my thoughts in the past month or two, and it’s become something I feel really passionate about sharing. This place, Dear Wilderness, is not going to become a health and wellness blog by any means, but it will continue to remain a place where I share what I’m passionate about, and so it might take a more “natural” turn in its focus. I want to talk about faith and spirituality, finding emotional expression, delicious recipes and restaurants, books that stimulate the imagination, natural health remedies, and general balance in all areas of life. Life is about the contradictions, the things that shouldn’t work but do, the unexpectedly beautiful, and finding the balance in the midst of it all. I want to extend my roots into this beautiful earth and reach up towards the heavens to search for beauty and wholeness. Hopefully I’ll have the courage to live out what I find.