Balancing Act

My husband and I used to do quite a bite of hiking. Occasionally we would come across stacks of balanced rocks along trails. Have you seen those? Rocks that are perfectly and precariously balanced one on top of each other. Some more than 8 or 9 high, others smaller but still impressive. I would always wonder, how the heck do they get them to balance like that?

Out of Balance

“Get In, Get Out, Get It Done” is a rather good way to describe my attitude when it comes to getting sh*t checked off my list. I am a type-a personality when it comes to tasks, so lists are my lifeline to feeling in control. However, with each passing year the to-do lists get longer, responsibilities seem heavier, and worries get more intense. Not to mention the increased stress from a global pandemic – thanks a lot 2020. As I get older, I find it harder and harder to balance the busyness of day to day life with the time I need to rest and recharge.

The emotional toll of pushing down your mental health needs in favor of the long list of others things that are demanding your attention can be huge. I experienced a bit of this just last week, and it was tough. My realization? There is not much balance happening in my life right now.

Every Day We’re Hustlin..

Ah…the glorification of being “busy”. Are you a busy bee? Always doing, going, helping, assisting, working, stressing, exhausting, …all the -ings? When I’m busy I feel like I am doing something important. However, at the root of this busyness is the fact that I have an extremely hard time asking for any kind of help or support.

Roots Run Deep..

Growing up I created a thick emotional armour for myself to keep the bullies cruelty from getting to me. Although that was a good tactic for me to employ for the teasing, over the years it became my default setting. I do not let many people in, and even when I do, it takes A LOT for me to be vulnerable and admit any kind of inability to get something done myself. I used to think that I wouldn’t ask for help because it was just easier for me to do it myself, but I learned something over this past week. By choosing to do everything on my own and not ask for help, I am protecting myself from possible rejection and ridicule. That’s some deep rooted insecurities right there.

Tiny Teachers..

Thankfully, my daughter has no trouble asking for help. Just the other day she was spending her afternoon playing outside doing the usual jumping, swinging, riding her bike stuff, when she stopped and looked down at the rocks in our gravel driveway. Sitting down on the ground, she began collecting rocks and placing them on the concrete walkway. A whole array of them – different shapes, textures, colors. She has always had an eye for finding the prettiest rocks. Then, one by one, she began to try to stack them. Working through the process in her little mind how best to get them to balance. Figuring out which ones would work best for the style and design she was planning.

She asked for my help at various times to choose a better rock for her stack, or find a prettier one for the top. She asked for help when she needed it, and as a result created numerous stacks of rocks all along our walkway while enjoying every moment of it.

Watching her work, I was reminded of the thoughts I would have when I would see these stacks of rocks on the hikes with my husband. “How do they get them to balance like that?” Patience and humility would be my answer now. Patience to work through the challenges, and the humility to ask for help and support when they need it.

Humble and Kind…

Do you need to take a cue from my daughter and work on your balancing skills? I know I do. Be more humble, and ask for help when I need it. Be more patient and let others help when and how they can. Allow yourself to receive the support that is ready and waiting for you. You just have to ask.

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