It’s all about balance – career versus family, social life versus independence, health versus excitement, challenge versus relaxation…
There are so many dilemmas, and man, it sure sounds exhausting.
A balancing act through prioritizing, fortunately, has always been something I can do. I don’t work myself to death and get all stressed out, yet still able to set challenges to keep me on my toes (“keeps me sharp, on the edge, where I need to be”). I understand what is important to me and rarely waver from my principles.
Committing to healthier living has gradually transformed my lifestyle and priorities in my mid-30s – no more drinking and smoking, a cleaner diet, smarter workouts, zero nightlife, less materialistic, and a more family-oriented mentality.
Faced with change or a desire to change, reprioritization and rebalancing are often required.
Since reading Stephen King’s Long Walk a few years ago, I’ve had this visual, which oddly doesn’t have much to do with the novel.
Life is also a long walk. You have your parents and siblings walking with you during infancy and childhood. As you go through school, enter new social circles, and develop a career, new companions (friends, colleagues, acquaintances) join you, while old faces (lose touch with classmates and breakups) get off your road of life.
With each new phase comes new walk-mates.
I left home for boarding school when I was 13 and was on my own for the next 8 years in the US. My family wasn’t around, so my friends were who I relied on day in and day out.
Then when I began life as a working professional, I struck up fast friendships with colleagues that came and went.
Now 45 years old, I find myself spending less time and resources on social outings and material things. I much prefer and appreciate family times and me-times more than ever.
As you get older, you lose walk-mates more than you gain them. Different habits and routines.
It’s only natural.
And oftentimes, you would rather walk alone or with members in your circle of trust anyways.
However, life is about staying balanced during this long walk. This journey is interesting because of the different people you have met or will meet, whether they stay with you for the long haul or join you for a limited time.
As you build a life or try to structure a routine for a more balanced you, remember to take your important walk-mates into consideration and don’t be afraid to reinitiate communication with those who went their own ways in the past.
A goal without room for those you care about is not a grand enough goal.
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