Balance.

Balance is one of those words that holds more significance in my life than others. I'm in my 26th year of living and I designated this word for...not necessarily the theme for this year of my life, but the goal. When something is balanced it means it's harmonious. Everything is equally proportioned. That's how I've always operated, but never really noticed it.

When something in my life wasn't balanced I felt it. I felt sick, or solemn, drained or anxious. When I lack balance my life is in disarray. This is why it's so important to me. With balance my life functions better. Spiritually, physically, mentally, relational...everything, all across the board just works better and that's because I'm at peace. Without balance there's no peace. Without peace there's no balance. These two go hand in hand for me. The last few months I've been out of balance. Spiritually and mentally, certainly physically and though I can't exactly pin point how my relationships have been impacted from the lack of equilibrium I'm sure that they have. Now that it has been brought to my attention I will do what is necessary to restore the balance.

There are certain practices that helped keep me balanced things that I used to do, but lately have grown slack. Things you can do to help restore your balance like I am journeying to do again. The biggest thing that keeps me balanced is prayer. Prayer allows me to dump out all the junk in my mind, all the useless worry in my heart. Prayer leaves me lighter and though I don't have all the answers when I finish, I am in a better mental state and my heart rests in the fact that God is indeed working things out for me.

The second thing is practicing gratitude. Giving thanks puts you in a whole new frame of mind. It allows you to focus on the positives and not the negatives while making room for what you're hoping for.

The third thing that I do is meditate/yoga. I meditate and do yoga together because they're both mental and physical. Meditation helps rewire the mind while yoga challenges the body.

The fourth thing to do is exercise. Exercise releases endorphin's that trigger positive feelings in the body. Some people call it a "runner's high" I call it working your way happy. The benefits of exercise are just as much psychological as they are physiological.

The fifth thing to do is make time for your family and friends. Make time to do things with the people you love and care about. Take a break from your hectic schedule and have some fun. Have a glass wine with your girls or plan a guys trip. Whatever it may be just do it with NON STRESSFUL people.   *trust me it makes a difference*

The last thing, which to me is just as important as the first, is to make sure you're doing a job, working in a field or an area that you enjoy. Life is too important and way too short to work in a place that has more lows than it does highs. Figure out what your purpose and your passion is and build a career around that. If you have to roll out of bed to go to a job at least make sure it's one you enjoy. Right now I'm working in a place that I never thought I would, but I honestly enjoy it and HERE'S THE KICKER this isn't my place of passion, but it is a place of purpose. The job I am in is a part of the journey, it's not the end all. So, if you have to work in a place while you pursue your dreams I say to you, you're brilliant. Just remember that it's not where you're going to stay. Don't get comfortable in that place to the point where you lose focus of the end goal. Trust me I know stability is important. I stayed in a place I hated for years, a place that stressed me and I dreaded going to because the check was decent; when I finally remembered my dreams I left without a plan, but with dreams and purpose and that's why I say to you, re-evaluate your life. Remember your dreams and go for them. 

Balance is sooo important and I could go on and on and on about different things to do to work towards it, but honestly everyone is different. These areas are probably just the surface for some and for others it might not pertain to you at all. My only advice and my biggest desire is that you live the best life that you possibly can. Whole, balanced and free. 

Live it up and enjoy the journey.

Xoxo, 
A.J