3 Steps to Creating Balance in Your Life
Written By: Christine Bar Noël
How did I get here? Living in Los Angeles, driving 2 hours roundtrip to a job I hated, missing my friends from home and living paycheck to paycheck. This was definitely not the L.A. Hollywood lifestyle I signed up for when I moved from my hometown of Kansas City. I had to reevaluate my options and make some changes, like yesterday, but where to start?
When you hit rock bottom, everything seems overwhelming or doomed from the beginning. So I decided to look to the stars. No, not a slow ballad scene in the middle of a Disney movie….astrology! I already knew I was a Libra, but what does being a Libra really mean and how could it help me get my life back on track. Well, Libra’s needs balance in their life; they’re creative but indecisive and usually put others before themselves.
This was like my Oprah “Ah ha” moment! I moved to Los Angeles to look after my younger brother who was 17 at the time, working towards an acting career. (Spoiler alert: 10 years later he made it!) As his big sister, I needed to make sure he was ok and along the way, I figured I would find a job at a local dance studio and pursue my music career. Growing up in an artistic dance family is where the creative side comes in, but the city and community continued to challenge my lifestyle, had me struggling to survive and nearly caused me to have a mental breakdown.
Sound familiar? Are you in survival mode? Constantly trying to find time for yourself, creating a “To Do list” that never seems to get shorter, and feeling like your life is one giant hamster wheel that has you looking for the exit? Well I’m here to tell you, there’s a way out and it’s easier than you think. The key is to take one step at a time, create small habit changes that accumulate into life-changing results. First you must balance your life and then you can decide how you want to live it. Balancing your life means knowing when to say no, asking for help and prioritizing your own well-being before others. Society would tell you this is selfish behavior, but why do you think flight attendants instruct us to put our own mask on first before helping someone else? Because if you pass out, you are no longer of service to anyone, including yourself. Well, life is no different. You need to practice healthy self love and carve out time in your life to relax and breathe without the burden of responsibilities.
Now I will say, the road to authentic reflection, self-awareness and true balance requires work. It takes putting your ego aside, asking for help when you need it, not trying to be a superhero all the time and creating consistent, healthy habits. But I have some good news: IT IS POSSIBLE and I’m going to show you how to get started with 3 simple steps:
STEP 1: Decide What You Want – The first step is identifying what it is that you desire out of life! Create a list of everything that will make you happy at this point in your life. It can be anything. Start small and then really go for it: Two more hours of sleep a night, one day a week just for you with no responsibilities, kids or work. How about a vacation to Bali or maybe you want to lose 10 pounds. Perhaps you want to change career paths and start a business. Think hard about what it is that would make you truly happy. The problem with being busy and wishing for more time is that we usually don’t know what we want in the first place, if more time was available, we probably wouldn’t even know what to do with it. (Quarantine Problems 101)
STEP 2: Let Go – This one is important, so listen up! In order to live the life you desire, you must let go of your insecurities, ego and worrying about the opinions of others. Let go of trying to be everything for everyone – that’s not your job. Stop pretending that you’re not tired. Let go of caring what other people think about you because you CAN’T and WON’T make everyone happy, so focus on making yourself happy and everyone else will naturally find their place in your life.
STEP 3: Identify Your Inner Circle – Humans crave companionship, and we all need that one person who can listen and advise us when life gets hard. You might already have some special people like this in your life. Most of the time they are family or close friends, but the important part with this step is making sure that your inner circle is small. Thanks to social media, we have constant access to so many people right at our fingertips. Their voices, even if not directly, are affecting your self-esteem, decision-making and overall happiness. You need to identify the people in your life that you can’t live without. Those individuals who have your back no matter what, will advise and not judge, and help build you up, not tear you down for their own personal gain. As hard as it may be to eliminate people from your life, sometimes it’s necessary to do so for your personal growth.
So I hopped on the next plane back to Kansas City and my best friends were there to greet me with open arms. I made so many lists and decided to take a few community college courses to finish up a degree I was working on two years prior. This led me to great mentorship and some incredible experiences that helped me start my first business. Make the choice today to take 3 simple steps that can change your life.