Let’s discuss the mythological beast, the demon that plagues our day, and has us popping Xanax out of our unicorn PEZ dispensers… B.A.L.A.N.C.E.- Balance. Alright, ladies, I know I can’t be alone in this… If I find success in one area of my life, I am completely failing in another. If I am an amazing mother, somehow, I have become an awful friend. If I am doing great at work, I am clothed in guilt for ignoring the littles. My house is clean but I am a mess. I am a good steward of my money at the cost of alienating all of my friends. I am in great shape but have no time for a love life. I cook amazing from scratch meals but then the extra-curriculars get thrown out the door. Relationships, marriage, family, friends, sex, health, work, diet, parenting, dreaming, getting out of debt, living life, it can all be quite overwhelming. So… how do we do it all? And, if we can’t, what ball do we drop when each ball is just as important as the next?
My local Propel chapter gave me clarity on this subject. We can do it all. We just can’t do it ALL at one time.
Each ball, is a season in your life. Instead of doing everything at one time, embrace the current. Sometimes you will have down seasons and sometimes hectic ones. In down seasons, catch up with friends, do little acts of random kindness, make love, make dinner, lose weight, laugh and play. In the hectic seasons, you may simply be thankful for a good night sleep, and a Starbucks drive-thru. Don’t waste restful seasons by being anxious for what comes next and in building seasons, don’t feel guilty for being all-consumed. There are blizzards and there are sunny days. We need both.
It’s so important that we don’t waste our restful seasons by being anxious. Sometimes doing nothing is in fact doing something. Our culture glorifies “busy.” In calm seasons be calm. Rest. You may be gearing up for something big ahead, and if you didn’t embrace the peace in the down season, you may not have the energy for what is in store…
Beginnings and endings are often building seasons. These seasons, along with stormy seasons can be all-consuming. This is when that restful season comes in handy. Don’t feel guilty for being all-consumed (it’s easy to do.) Any new venture, whether relationally derived or dream/goal oriented may throw you into a tail-spin. This is probably not the time where you will be excelling in other areas of your life. It’s important to trust people to have grace for us and to extend that same grace in return. If your husband is starting a new job, he may not give you the attention you desire. When your sister gets a new boyfriend she may not be available to babysit as often, or when a friend is struggling she may need to shut out the world. This is what relationships are all about- support. Support those you love and cherish their support in return (and forgive them if they struggle to support you; not everyone will understand your journey or season nor will you always understand theirs.)
There are building seasons and there are also fixing seasons or what I like to call -seasons of screwing up. These seasons are also a part of the human condition. You may be about to lose your job, house or are in massive amounts of debt. You may have a new colicky baby and spend your days trying to survive, while your BFF seems to have no problem being a new mom. While, your marriage is falling apart and you are in survival mode, your nearest and dearest don’t understand what’s wrong with you. If you just did ________ everything would be better.
It is okay to fail. It’s okay to make mistakes and to not be perfect. At times, we are all bad friends, mess up big work projects or hurt someone we love. We all struggle, in different areas and in different ways. I am divorced. You are in debt. My child is counseling and you haven’t slept with your husband in a year. Let’s loosen the pressure and walk in love. Try this… “It’s okay that you are late.” “I forgive you for forgetting my birthday.” “Yes, we can absolutely rain check that.” “I am happy you are so happy.” “Congratulations on your new job! Let’s hit a happy hour when things settle down.” “Don’t worry, sometimes my house can get pretty messy too.” “Leggings are absolutely pants and you look great!”
My point is that we can do it all just not all at one time. We need to love and support one another. Life is hard enough without us putting pressure on each other. We shouldn’t criticize someone in a calm season simply because we are in a storm, nor should we feel guilty for not being everything to everyone. We may miss the BBQ because we were up late fighting with our husband… again. Or, hopefully, we miss the BBQ because, well… we were up all night… not fighting (wink, wink.) So… take a minute and remove any shame on your heart and let go of all judgment for yourself and others. We all suck and we are all amazing. Let’s authentically enjoy each season because they are all special in their own way and encourage others to do the same.