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Vacations are lovely–but returning home from them isn’t so much.
Between unpacking, responding to emails, doing laundry, caring for animals, preparing for the week’s upcoming meetings and events, and dealing with a neighborhood water outage, catching up can feel more like a near-impossible feat.
Fortunately, soon after arriving home I decided to take a few minutes to put a plan together rather than simply launching into the process of unpacking. That critical step made things seem a lot less overwhelming.
Many have argued that there is no such thing as balance. The word itself implies an equal distribution of energy or attention, something that simply isn’t attainable. We often use the word to describe the perfect balance between our work and personal obligations, but perhaps balance is more subjective than that.
To me, balance is just something I feel. When I feel balanced I also feel more relaxed, confident, organized, and clear about my goals. But when I feel out of balance I feel stressed, uncertain, and my life feels chaotic. It’s easy to see how the latter can leave us feeling disheartened and depressed.
Balance doesn’t necessarily mean easy, though. Sometimes we can feel a lack of balance when we aren’t challenged enough. If we aren’t able to use our strengths or express ourselves authentically, it can also leave us feeling conflicted.
Catching up after being away for several days helped bring me back to a feeling of balance–and that’s exactly what makes self-care so powerful.