How important is it to have balance in life?
“There is strong evidence that group members – work , hobbies, friendship circles- and having a shared identity is strongly linked to mental wellbeing.” Says Professor Alex Haslam from the University of Queensland,“In other words, when a person does not have this sense of belonging, it negatively impacts on all areas of their mental and physical health.”
I personally feel I need to find balance between these areas:
Work– It’s important to feel a sense of responsibility and being rewarded for your efforts. I think mental stimulation and financial empowerment helps us and the feeling of being part of a team working toward a common goal gives you a sense of belonging.
Physical– Social interaction and perhaps feeling a part of a team working to achieve targets. Health, competition, and fitness are important too.
Social– Interaction with friends, strangers and groups, outside activity, creativity and communication.
Spiritual– A sense of belonging to something greater and self-development.
Family– Love, belonging to a group, knowing your identity and feeling support.
Hobbies– Feeling creative and productive as well as having social interaction and mental stimulation are important.
Why we shouldn’t try to get all of our satisfaction from one area in life:
Different life events that have happened may mean that you are out of balance in one or more area of your life. For me personally, having stopped working to go travelling for 4 months really threw me out of balance. I felt I needed to get back to work, to have some responsibilities, to be working toward something and feel a sense of belonging . Having settled in a new town now for the next year to save money, I have found it takes a lot of effort to get back on the “bike” as such and to find my balance again. It is hard to always feel the need to put yourself out there to meet people and try join in, but I know how important it is to feel a part of something and to meet people who have common interests.
When I first started working again, I was only doing night shifts so I would find myself just relaxing in the day, not doing anything with my time, and after a while this took a big toll on me mentally. I got into such an unhealthy routine of only watching Netflix, reading and eating, and before I knew it I was getting ready for work. I wasn’t interacting with anyone, or doing any exercise. I then got a large paycheck and had no one to go spend my money with as I had neglected the social side. I decided to get some balance back in my life and not just be focusing on one or two aspects.
Joining the gym has been great as I attend the classes which gives me a sense of social interaction as well as health and fitness , and some days I just don’t feel like running on the treadmill alone so attending classes is great 🙂 . I have started making more of an effort to meet people as well as doing things in the day, even if it is just going for a walk, and as I enjoy running I will be joining a running club. I realized I needed to remind myself to look at all aspects of my life, not just get caught up in one or two, and to make the effort to involve myself in different groups.
What are your thoughts on having a good balance in life?
“Next to love, balance is the most important thing.” John Wooden