what does 'balance' mean, anyway?
If I don't know the meaning of a word, I just ask my husband. Seriously ...... he is the KING of vocabulary! I have to be careful, however, because sometimes he gives me an erroneous answer just to mess with me. If I am looking him in the eye when he does it, I can catch him. His right eye glints and sparkles for just a fraction of a second and he is caught. Once I smile or lift my left eyebrow I've got him. The sly crooked smile of his can't be contained and he knows at once he is busted. Unfortunately for me, however, I am not always looking him in the eye.
But I digress. Yes, yes, back to definitions. I should go to an online dictionary and search for a proper meaning to my query, but I am often left scratching my head with more questions. What does it mean to ME? How does that definition FIT my need? Did it just use the SAME word in order to define that word? Ugh. I am much better off when I define a word by applying things I already know and figuring out how the word applies to me.
So ....... b-a-l-a-n-c-e. Well, I think of a gymnast when I think of balance. More specifically, a gymnast on a b-a-l-a-n-c-e beam. I don't have to imagine what it is like, because I was both a gymnast and a gymnastic instructor during my lifetime so I have personal experience with the apparatus. Low, high, short or long; all are 4" wide and you must walk, tiptoe, jump, turn, spin and flip on the beam while maintaining balance. Balance is the KEY to staying on the beam.
How do you do it?
What does it feel like?
For me, it was a delicate dance between tension and relaxation. Tense up your muscles too tight and you will literally bounce off the beam. Muscles too loose will find yourself fighting gravity's pull to lower ground. Hold your breath and get lightheaded; but breath too fast will bring on hyperventilation. Both result in getting 'off balance' and thus, off the beam.
Now; to apply 'balance' to my life, I apply what I know about my definition and plug it into my world.
Not too tense. Relax the shoulders and breathe. Stop, assess the imbalance, and correct. Keep on top of things. Don't sweat every detail. Let out the rope but know when to reign it back in. Constant motion with restful breaks.
This brings me to my last point, and reminder to myself when I start to become overwhelmed.
Oxygen. As in, "When in an emergency situation, the oxygen masks will drop from the ceiling. Place the mask over YOUR face FIRST so you are able to have the strength and clarity to place the remaining oxygen masks on others."
If I do not take care of myself and strive for balance, I will be of no use to anyone. Oxygen for myself first. Always.
written by Amy