By Caryn O’Hara
Answering the question, “Who am I?” can be an interesting exercise. If I am not the roles I lead in life, then I am not a gut expert, ayurvedic health counselor, wife, dog mom, aunt, sister, friend. If I am not my preferences, I am not where I choose to live or eat or drive or even what I do with my time. I am not my successes. I am not my failures. I am not my health. I am not my emotions. I am not my thoughts. I am not this body.
If everything is stripped away, who does that leave?
What remains is the unwavering part of us. No matter how much looking at social media can catalyze questioning our decisions, wondering if we are on the right track, or creating the inert force of analysis paralysis. Conversely, no matter how many hormones are trying to convince us that we are actually a monster who will stop at nothing until we find chocolate, we must remember that these thoughts and feelings are temporary. We are more than that.
We are resilient, high-vibrational beings who are here to express ourselves, live fully and make magic happen. Truly. It doesn’t so much matter how we choose to do it or how many times we change the way in which we do it. The important thing is we are alive and therefore we are intuitive, infinitely creative energy.
While we can all relate to those times in our lives when we have failed or not stepped up at a time when it would have made an impact, that was only one moment of life. It is in the past, which we cannot change. We can all agree that diagnosis, job loss, divorce and death can feel like it changes us. In truth, we are the same person. Albeit with more perspective and hopefully more compassion, we are us.
Given we are dynamic, it’s not surprising we require an array of interactions and encounters to satiate that hunger we have to truly experience life. It certainly isn’t unique to want it all — health, friendships, romantic relationship, family, career. To feel balanced, it’s helpful to exercise our ability to be an athlete and an artist, rock the family and the career.
So we don’t get carried away and define ourselves by these roles we play, let’s remember we can accomplish more than most of us give ourselves credit for during this life. There is no rush. We don’t have to do it all now. The list of accomplishments do not tell the story of who we are at our core. Instead, who are we through all of the phases and experiences? Who is that person who is there no matter what the activity is?
On a deeper level, we can rest easy knowing we crave the work. Whether it’s building an enterprise, running a small business, joining the military, doing charity work, raising children, taking care of our aging parents, fostering animals, or conserving the earth’s resources, we are all working hard. The nature of being human asks us to do this so our creative energies can process, just as our grievances need to be shifted through to release out of our sphere.
So the next time we catch ourselves complaining about how busy or stressed we are, let’s consider a new approach. Can we view our work as play? As abundance? Can we create small moments throughout the day to check in and find center? Can we take charge to recharge so we aren’t ending each day depleted? Can we find gratitude in the small moments?
Here are six tips on how we can be masters of balance even with a heavy workload:
- Hydrate. From the time the alarm goes off through just after dinner, we need to purify and wash away excess.
- Keep exercise on the calendar. Whether it’s a simple walk to grab coffee, a bike ride instead of driving a car, or a full-on, high-intensity interval workout, let’s do it to keep our happy hormones like oxytocin pumping through the body.
- Laugh. Finding humor in life is essential for us to stay connected to our lighter, less frazzled side.
- Integrate mindfulness at work. I am one of many wellness entrepreneurs who implement yoga or meditation in office spaces to keep health in check and productivity high.
- Eat well. When we put goodness into our body, we think, feel, and act in alignment with our personal integrity.
- Sleep. Let’s promise to do whatever simple actions it takes to support restful sleep.