Life Lessons, Reincarnation and The Masters (part four)
“Everything must be balanced. Nature is balanced…Humans have not learned to do that. They continue to destroy themselves. There is no harmony, no plan to what they do. It’s so different in nature. Nature is balanced. Nature is energy and life … and restoration.” Weiss, Brian L., M.D. Many Lives, Many Masters: The True Story of a Prominent Psychiatrist, His Young Patient, and the Past-Life Therapy that Changed Both Their Lives. (p. 68-69). Touchstone. Kindle Edition.
After having spent time discussing acceptance as one of my chosen life lessons, I will focus on balance, my second chosen life lesson.
Like with acceptance, balance can be a fleeting thing, an ephemeral thing. I have experienced lengthy periods of balance, only to find myself knocked off balance, by an event, a thought, an experience, or some such thing.
To me, balance means a fluidity in our lives – our personal lives, our work lives, our spiritual lives, our physical lives, our emotional lives. Of course, spirituality, physicality, and emotionality can all go under the encompassing umbrella of “personal lives.” I certainly recognize that people value things differently, and indeed, they should, hence the “breakdown” of categories within “personal lives.” Doubtless, work lives can also be broken down into individual categories as well, such as peer relations, social connections, financial growth, professional growth, promotional increases, etc.
For ease, I’m going to be addressing balance as between work life and personal life. In my life, I use a series of rewards to motivate me in both my personal life AND my work life. I recently added back Fridays to my schedule, primarily during the pandemic, as there was, and still is, such a need for emotional support. I’ve scheduled eight 45-minute session appointment availabilities each day, which comes to a weekly total of 40 sessions. That is, indeed, A LOT!!! As such, I made an agreement with myself that I would work very hard during each week, but build in rewards, such as four weeklong vacations every quarter, i.e., Winter (January – March), Spring (April – June), Summer (July – September) and Fall (October – December).
I recently took the first of my “playcations” going to Minnesota to visit a fellow therapist-friend. I did have to give myself quite a “talking-too” as I find it challenging to maintain my work/personal life boundaries, as many of you are aware, since I sometimes (oftentimes) respond to messages from clients on evenings and weekends. For the first time in maybe EVER, I left my computer at home.
Now, people who know me know that I am an Apple aficionado having a Mac, an iPad, and an iPhone. So… I really didn’t NEED my Mac to check in on my work life, i.e., my website, my work email, my work voice mail, etc. BUT, that said, I worked very hard to NOT doing so. I did check the two messages that came into my work email (I was notified) to determine there were no emergencies that needed my attention…there were not. I was proud of myself for maintaining my own boundaries, as I “preach” personal boundaries in my work and feel like I must maintain good boundaries as an example for my clients.
Another way to prepare for a work-free vacation is to do work ahead of time (that which CAN be done ahead of time), and to do work upon your return. I was careful to do so, indeed, notifying my clients for at least 4-6 weeks ahead of my vacation that I would be gone, with weekly reminders. Additionally, I also advised my clients that I would be notified in the case of an emergency and told them how to do so, i.e., mark a message as “urgent.” I also clarified that “urgent” or “emergency” meant blood and guts, nothing less… As another aside, I find humor to be an extremely effective communication tool! While neither of the two messages were of an urgent nature, I still took the time to read them, as I find that “forewarned is forearmed.” As it would have it, neither message required any work done on my vacation!
I returned to my home office well rested and was so pleased to find that the burnout that I was struggling was gone, and, indeed, remains gone at the writing of this blog, 11 days later! I’m so encouraged about my future work life/personal life balance, as I have two more playcations to look forward to this year, before I begin next year with a new total of FOUR playcations!
More Mental Health Musings coming next week!