How to have the perfect life balance

Is the perfect life balance the utopia we are all aiming for?

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In order to achieve great things, I believe there has to be an imbalance. I’m sure there are some exceptions – those who don’t seem to sleep and appear to be able to ‘do it all’. However, most people who are hugely successful have had to make sacrifices along the way.

It’s difficult to have everything working well for you simultaneously; to be fit, eat well, be up to date with current affairs, be on top of your finances, excelling at work, have a great social life, spend enough time with your family, travel, pursue your hobbies and have enough sleep. It sounds exhausting even thinking about it. Sometimes we feel like we are being pulled in all directions. But who’s to say we need to have it all?

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I believe everyone has a different kind of balance that works for them. Some of us are workaholics; some of us like to spend all our time with our friends; some like to veg out on the couch all day; and some are fitness fanatics. While these are all worthy ways to spend your time too much of one thing can become a problem. As an elite athlete, often my social life or academic career gets pushed to the side to make way for training and sleep. They are my priorities; and the lifestyle I need to live to achieve my goals. Many people take a similar approach with work, prioritising work above all else. This kind of focus is great to progressing in one aspect of your life, but is not always sustainable.

Diet, exercise and sleep are the big three that are often neglected when life gets ‘busy’. However, we all know keeping an active, healthy body and mind helps you feel good, focus at work and improve your mood.

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The question is how can we make sure we keep closer to our own balance? First of all, have a think about your goals, what’s important and what makes you happy in life.

Below are my top tips for doing both; pursuing your goals and edging closer to a balanced life.

  • Prepare your meals in advance so you can eat well and don’t get caught out reaching for something unhealthy. I always keep an Aussie Bodies protein bar on me for when I need a snack between meals.
  • Exercise in the morning so that you don’t get to the end of the day and run out of time.
  • Put reminders in your phone to call your family or those important to you to stay connected.
  • Set a sleep time and be consistent each night; it’s far too easy to stay up to watch one more episode of your favorite show.
  • Plan your week to fit in all the things most important to you and start to cull those that aren’t; learn to say ‘no’.
  • Downtime or ‘me time’ is also very valuable to helping you relax and unwind.
  • Find something that incorporates more than one aspect of a balanced life eg, exercise with a friend or listen to an educational podcast while you commute.
  • Always have something you look forward to in your week. This could be drinks with friends, a massage, yoga class, movie or a dip in the ocean.

You can start by selecting just one or two areas to focus on. While there are many areas in our lives we could improve you are more likely to make a change if it’s achievable. Evaluate your life and decide what you need to do more of; what you need to cut back on; and start to shift towards your own balance. There will often be an imbalance when taking a risk and pursuing your dreams, however, but by creating your own personal balance with what works for you, you can create your own kind of life and your own kind of happiness.

 

Harriet Brown