At the start of 2019, I knew I needed to find greater balance in my life. 2018 had been a great year, full of new beginnings, new friends and new challenges but I had taken on a lot and was feeling over extended in nearly every aspect of my life. I remember going for a jog during winter break last year and realizing, very clearly, what the theme for 2019 needed to be: The Year of Balance.
As I mentioned in previous posts, I’ve been setting yearly themes for a few years now. Having a theme for the year helps me set the tone for the year and allows me to have a touch point to return to as I go through the year. 2018 was The Year of Joy and I used that theme as inspiration to go out and enjoy my life as the opportunities presented themselves. I tend to naturally prioritize responsibilities and obligation above my own happiness. The 2018 theme of “Joy” encouraged me to take chances and chase the things that brought me more happiness and joy. It was really a great year but by the end of 2018 I found myself feeling spread too thin. I had chased my bliss and suddenly my plate was over-full. I knew I needed to find balance.
“Balance” is a dynamic concept. It isn’t some permanent state, some ready answer that you can depend on again and again. Balance is something you need to find by listening and watching very closely – a nudge in one direction and then the other until you find just the right point.
Balance in life is difficult to describe. It’s a little different for everyone and so I have found that it’s important that I find a few moments of stillness in my day, a few moments when I can reflect internally and really feel if I’m in balance or not.
And so, in The Year of Balance, I found myself going back to tried and true practices that have helped me ground myself through the years: meditation and journaling. In the quiet stillness of the morning I would sit in silent meditation and learned to connect with that feeling of balance within. I started to be able to tell when one area of my life had become “too much” and needed to be pulled back or when another area of my life wasn’t getting enough attention and needed to be renewed and refreshed.
The Year of Balance meant walking away from some of the things I found during the Year of Joy. It meant leaving some projects in order to connect with my own inner light and my own highest good. As the Year of Balance comes to a close, I feel more grounded, more secure in who I am and what I want. And so, 2020 will be The Year of Following my Own Star – a year of going on my own path and trusting where it will lead me. I find myself both excited and a little afraid of the year to come. It feels like I’m combining the lessons from The Year of Joy and The Year of Balance into something new and different – a leap of faith.