In my best Carrie Bradshaw voice, “I couldn’t help but wonder, can we really have it all?”
From a very young age, we’re taught that we can have it all – everything is going to fall into place and be perfect. Rom coms promise that Prince Charming is going to run into us as we walk out the door of interviewing for our dream job and that our frenemy is going to get what is coming to them.
In reality, life is all about balance. And the real question we should be asking (queue the Carrie voice) is, what happens when the most important aspects of our life fall out of balance?
Think about it, your work life is going well – you have your dream job, but your relationship status leaves much to be desired. Or you are incredibly happy with your relationship, but you are on the outs with family members. In either scenario, when the emotional scales in your life are not balanced, the tendency to feel the negativity of either item (your love life or family) is heightened.
Consider this example, if you are in a less fulfilling job and looking for something better whilst also looking for love (or generally content in your current relationship), the scales tend to be balanced – you are less inclined to feel that either of these items are bad, because they are on equal ground (so to speak). While one may tip in one direction occasionally – you could get in a fight with your significant other, you could be turned down for a promotion– neither tends to be dominating your focus.
If or when you feel your life is out of balance, what should you do? Because while we cannot have it all, we can come close. How do we get close? By recognizing what we have.
Friends and Family
Beyond being the ones to continually put up with us, they help us get closer to having it all. Encouragement and support (constant or otherwise) fills the void when you feel inadequate or you need someone to talk to or lean on. Friends can be family and vice versa – never take for granted how lucky we are to have someone to talk to when in need.
Feel like you need to or should be doing more? Consider yourself lucky. Drive is what sets you ahead of others and will help you propel yourself forward. Having the drive and desire to do more is a gift — keeping this in mind groups you apart from others.
Keep your expectations in check – knowing and understanding reality, what’s possible and attainable, will assist with the balance – and help you keep your sanity.
Not all love has to be romantic. We can love our family, friends, a pet, or just love life (get the most out of what you do). Remember all the other important relationships in your life and how they make you feel. Shift the emphasis to focus on these other relationships and put less pressure on yourself and what you feel is lacking.
Calibrate the perception you have set for yourself; chances are, you’re holding yourself to imaginary standards. The expectations you have for yourself are significantly higher than what others have for you – or, you are comparing yourself to someone who is undeserving of the comparison. Know that you will never meet the imaginary expectations and standards you have set in your mind – so stop trying. Right now. No one is as together as they appear to be, especially on social media or when they tell you a story at work. Just focus on yourself and worry about what you have and your balance.
The pressure to fill the internal void is often what sets the lack of balance into overdrive. If at your dream job, everyone around you is engaged or getting married… while you’re buried in your work, you may feel a sense of inadequacy. Here’s what you need to remember, if you feel unbalanced, it’s time to change your outlook. In our current day and age, we can almost have it all, if we’re willing to consider what “it all” really is. While television and movies make it seem as if everything is easily possible, we’ll have to work just a little harder to find the balance in our own lives.