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A Simple Way to Find Balance When Life Feels too Busy

Feb 27, 2017

Once upon a time, in a bustling city, there lived a middle-aged mother who had it all. She had well-adjusted children, a well-kept home and a thriving business. Her bills were paid, her tresses trimmed, her libido strong and her worries fleeting. Each morning, she skipped through the streets with a smoothie and a smile — started no story ever.

Let's try this again without the fairy tale.

Once upon a time, in a not-so-far-away land, lived parents young and old, who found doing it all ridiculously hard. Not one parent among them was prospering in home life, career, health, personal projects, romance and relationships, all at once, all year round. Not everyone cared to have it all, but those who did canvassed books, blogs and bottles in search of the key to balance. Some said it didn't exist. Others claimed to have found it, but like illusionists, cast images drawn in deceit.

As the modern adage says, 'We can have it all, but not all at once.'

One day, a tired but hopeful mother happened upon a clue while gazing out from her balcony. She noticed the spidery ends of a maple tree; ends that once boasted lush leaves in rich red hues, and greens before that. And she recalled standing in the same spot during warmer weather, remarking on the dewy branches spotted with promise. The landscape had changed, and history told her it would do so again.

She considered the seasons, as well as flowers, animal life and elements. In each instance, she recognized cycles of dormancy, conception, fruitfulness, maturation and passing. She gasped in delight, having discovered, in that moment, her secret to balance.

As the modern adage says, "We can have it all, but not all at once." It's this idea of seasons or cycles that's helped me achieve greater balance in my life. Here's how I apply this practically.

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I prioritize by season. In nature, few things can sustain the same heightened state all year long. Snow, strawberries, sunflowers — they all come and go with the seasons. Likewise, not all my interests can peak throughout the year. So each season I focus on one or two key priorities. This winter, my focuses are writing and track and field training. In the meantime, redecorating, modeling, fitness classes and learning to knit are dormant. Come spring, I anticipate the flowering of current seeds and the planting of new ones.

I trust the natural ebb and flow. Just as there is an ebb and flow to the tides, there is an ebb and flow to life. Sometimes hubby and I are hot and heavy, sometimes we're not. Sometimes we have an abundance of money and resources, other times not. Coffee dates with girlfriends, motivation to work out and manicure appointments all wane at some point. That's okay. Dare I say, even natural. I've learned to worry less during these times of drought, knowing they will flow again in good time.

So if you happen to see me skipping through the streets with a smoothie and a smile, it's not because I have it all. I'm simply rocking life one season at a time.

Article Author Debbie King
Debbie King

Read more from Debbie here.

Debbie King (aka SUPAFITMAMA) is a Toronto-based masters athlete, influencer, freelance writer, wife and mother of one. At age 42, she is training toward her goal of becoming a 2020 World Masters Athletics track and field champion. In her work as a writer and influencer, Debbie creates powerful content and connections in female fitness, sport, wellness and culture. Body positivity, inclusion and representation are strong themes throughout. As a regular contributor for CBC Parents, she explores a range of healthy living topics for individuals and Canadian families. Follow her journey at supafitmama.com and on Instagram and Twitter.

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