A balanced life is what I sought,
Only to have a life that was not.
My battle for balance was constantly fought,
Yet, time and again I found myself caught.
I planned, I managed, I strove to obtain.
With burnout, frustration, and a worn out brain.
Time I did “manage” with feelings distraught,
Where the harder I tried, the less I got.
Balance - all of us have at least once sought it. Many of us do it all the time and it remains an elusive state.
I started thinking about an analogy, which could perhaps teach me something about balance. And here it was - tightrope walking.
So, I wondered what someone like Andrea Loreni - a famous Italian tightrope walker, recordman and trainer would say about balance. I did not expect the answers he gave, yet the lessons were priceless.
“Balancing is not a technique of standing on a tightrope, says Andrea, - it’s a way of facing fear, a new situation with every step, an obstacle. It’s a constant self-transformation process that involves the body-mind whole. It’s a process in which you continuously exceed limits of individuation and personal growth.”
Balance is an instance. If you stay in balance for too long, you achieve a static state. In this case, you don’t need to balance anymore. If you are on a tightrope and stop moving, you will fall. Even if you are on a solid ground and not paying attention, an unexpected gust of wind can throw you off your feet.
Balance is in the movement.
If you move too slowly, you fall. If you move too quickly, you fall too.
Yet, there is no rule that works for everyone and every situation. Who you are, your technique, the way you feel today, the way the wind is blowing - there are many factors that determine your personal balance in a given instance.
Balance is personal.
One thing, however is common - focus.
When you walk on the tightrope you cannot focus on the end of your journey. You focus is on the now, on every new step you take and every new obstacle you encounter.
Balance is in focus
To keep balance, some tightrope walkers walk with a balancing pole; some remain in one place and juggle balls or clubs - another type of movement. Yet, have you seen anyone doing both - walking with a pole and juggling?
You choose what you balance with
From quantum physics and neuropsychology we know that the reality is not the same for everybody. When we look at the same picture, we see different things. The picture of our reality is defined by our own mind, and the way we experience life is determined by the our inner state.
What is in balance for one may be far from balance for the other. What is in balance for me today may be totally out of control tomorrow.
“Also on the tightrope, says Loreni, - I’m scared but the pain and fear only lie in my mind. In that moment, the only thing to do is to stop thinking and focus on the here and now of the experience”
There is no balance without imbalance. It’s a constant inner search and a constant outer change