It’s Thursday evening and I can’t help but wonder about the balancing act of life now days. I can recall a time when people where using the phrase work/life balance, the wonderful idea of having both a personal life and professional life that are in an equal and rewarding balance. Are they still using this idea I have to wonder? Are we actually able to have a sense of balance when everything has been off kilter for so many months now?
With the uprooting of office space, being moved out of cubicles, not seeing those re-assuring faces or hearing the voices of our dearest co-workers we have all been exposed to a bit of off-kilter. Converting dining room tables to desk’s, spare bedroom’s to offices, and our own kitchens to break rooms we have had to adapt.
If we have learned anything during this adaption phase is that in the midst of off-kilter we have proven that balance becomes an act of survival at times. Whereas work/life balance had included travel time, dry-cleaning, in person meetings and lunches we have been changed of that. The idea of travel time simply means shuffling from one room to another, dry-cleaning not a chance, since most of our meetings are virtual do we even need anything but a clean shirt? And for lunches sure thing, just open that fridge and grab what you want.
Now all humor aside precautions where taken to ensure safety for as many people as possible and for that I will always be grateful. 2020 was a very long and tedious nightmare of sorts in which each day you awoke finding yourself pulling together your senses of hope. The amount of loss of people globally is simply heartbreaking, too many lives lost, families shattered beyond repair. Yet we survived, we pulled through, we have been able to persevere. I think back to my opening of work/life balance in dismay and think it should be referred to as survival/work/life balance. Adding the key word of survival is so very important because that is what we have each been able to due within our own right, survive.
The act of survival has become an integral part of our balance hasn’t it? Where once heading out the door simply meant grabbing your keys and a wallet, know the first thing you grab is your mask(s) and then maybe hand sanitizer before reaching for your keys and wallet. We adapt, we balance, we survive. Let us each for a moment acknowledge and repeat the word RESILIENCE as this is a characteristic we have all been able to manifest just in order to make it through the day.
It’s not been easy, there have been tears, sleepless evenings, and too many snacks, but I keep trying, trying to do the best I can. Without a doubt I miss the faces and voices of the friends within the office, more than I ever realized I would, but I do.
My balance is ok, honestly depends on the day, but I make it work. It’s interesting how now we look forward to our virtual engagements just to see the faces we so miss in person, to laugh and try so very hard to make that connection, to keep that connection, to feel the encouragement of others. We are already near the close of the second month of 2021 and we have seen positive movement, now more than ever we must ensure that we balance.
What I have learned is perspective, what truly matters, what truly deserves the energy and attention we now hold so sacred. I find I am in no rush as I once was, I lean in even further now and listen with compassion, I acknowledge even more than usual and show gratitude without limits. The losses strengthen you, the pain hurts there is no doubt to that, but it fuels your survival. The balancing act is to simply be…