Being content in our own skin is what, I believe, we should all aspire to in life. Yet this is not possible without finding the balance. I’m not just talking about finding the balance between our food groups and ensuring we exercise regularly, I’m talking about finding the balance in life, between our friends, our family, our relationships, having time to relax as well as working hard, but most importantly, ourselves. If you are able to find the balance between all aspects of your life you will be content, but it is not as easy as it may seem.
The areas of life that require the most balancing can be split into 2 categories: internal and external. Often, people favour one over the other. For example, you may find you focus on external things such as work and relationships rather than what is going on inside your heart and mind. On the other hand, you may spend so much time being self reflective that you miss out on the experience of living. Take some time to really look at your life, your state of mind and how you’re feeling. Be honest with yourself and notice the areas of your life that you are neglecting. Don’t be afraid to treat yourself every once in a while, you deserve it. It doesn’t have to be a spa weekend; a relaxing night in front of the television will do perfectly.
One of the most important factors in realising self-confidence and contentment is to know that you must not compare yourselves to others. Everyone is fighting a different battle; everyone has struggles that are averted from the public eye. We are genetically made differently; our bodies perform individually so focusing on aspiring to look like someone else is scientifically impossible. Just because your friend ate that extra slice of cake for dessert and does not put on a pound, does not mean it’s the same for everyone. Obsessing over wishing to be someone else is a waste of time. Focus on yourself, appreciate what YOU have. Too often we look at others when in fact standing in the mirror and asking yourself how you can improve your life is much more far reaching.
Social media can be great, it’s a way to keep up to date with friends and share memories, but remember; a picture can paint 100 different stories. Who knows how many times she took the same photo, waiting for the perfect picture to appear. Most people only post what they want you to see, the good without the bad.
You must find the balance at work, be true to yourself and your employer. If you need some time out then be honest, there is no harm in taking a day off just to be at home, this may even help you to continue to work at your best. A day off does not mean taking a holiday abroad, you can take some time off to simply relax and recuperate, as we all know how stressful work can become.
Allow yourself the time for every aspect of life you enjoy, don’t feel guilty for passing up on drinks with work colleagues every once in a while because you want to visit the gym, it’s important to have time to yourself.
On the other hand, we should not allow ourselves to forget that this should not become obsessive and should never be in extreme. It is okay to miss out on work drinks to hit the gym as long as this does not become a regular occurrence and you do not allow exercise to define you. Your life is more than how many miles you run on the treadmill, you have other commitments too.
Balance and obsessions are two different outlooks on life, you must take baby steps. In the long term, stress will be far more damaging to your body than a few more bites of that chocolate bar but before you do so, stop and ask yourself, “am I nourishing my body?” It will make you stop and think about what you are putting in your mouth.
When it comes to finding the balance between what you eat, remember there is no correct way to do so. Whilst I may be rather opinionated on what I consider this to be, I understand that what it really boils down to is what is right for each individual.
I share my recipes in the hope of inspiring people to adapt a healthy, nutritious way of cooking in their own home but whichever method you choose to adopt, if it works for you then stick with it.
The art of finding the balance simply boils down to discipline and believing in yourself. Although, as with anything, this takes patience and perseverance, it does not happen overnight. This is a process to build and maintain throughout your life. I love recipe developing and love spending time in the kitchen creating something nourishing but I understand that I must find the balance. I can’t spend all my time in the kitchen, as I know I have other responsibilities and other aspects of my life that are just as important.
Thankfully, I love savoury foods more than sweet, although recently, I have been focusing on developing so many healthy treats and desserts that I have neglected the importance of ensuring that I have nourishing options for breakfast, lunch and dinner too, so I therefore must make more of an effort to find the balance between these meals.
I have discussed this subject with my friends and family time and time again, we all struggle in finding the balance in life, long story short? We are all striving to do our best and that is okay. Sometimes the goals and aspirations may change but we must continue to be true to ourselves and try not to expect unrealistic results.