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Is Your Life Out of Balance?



Is Your Life Out of Balance?

Do you beat yourself up when things don’t go your way?

I like things in my life to move smoothly. I don’t like it when I don’t finish a task or when I don’t reach a goal I’ve set for myself. And with the end of the year nearing, our natural inclination is to take stock of what went right, what went wrong and where there’s room for improvement.

As I did this, it occurred to me how hard I was being on myself. My internal conversations were just…mean. I was beating myself up for this and that, thinking of how I could’ve done certain things better or differently and sulking at my perceived ineptitude.

And so as I sat fretting, and fretting some more, and as I devoured yet another bowl of chocolate pudding (yes, I still binge when I am very stressed and can’t seem to find a solution to a pressing problem. The difference is that instead of countless bars of Fruit and Nut Toblerones and Bounty, I now binge on homemade chocolate pudding–zero guilt and zero damage), it occurred to me how hard I was being on myself.

So why was I beating myself up like this? And I’m guessing, why do most of us beat ourselves up?

Human nature. Sigh.

And so I decided on this. For you and for me:

As 2018 winds down and you take stock of your life over the past year, I want you to do 2 things:

First, take a moment and remember who you are and where you are in your life (Even if you are completely running out of steam. The new year is literally days away and the feeling of being drained is universal). Think about where you were last year and how far you have come this year whether in your personal or professional life. And only focus on the POSITIVE.

Second, and more importantly, I want you to think about self compassion. Since clearly, too often when we evaluate ourselves we focus on what we DIDN’T accomplish instead of praising ourselves for our successes.

So practice self compassion. Be kind to YOURSELF the same way you would others. If you find yourself thinking “I wanted to do this…but I couldn’t make it happen…” retrain your mind to treat yourself well. Reverse your thought process and instead of thinking about what DIDN’T happen, write down 3 things that DID happen.

Here are a few key areas for you to consider when thinking about balancing your life. To help you gauge yourself more accurately and to begin seeing yourself with more self compassion as you go into the new year with your prospects and goals, take a look at the following basic needs and different ways of finding true and positive fulfillment.

Keep in mind that no matter what we use as criteria when it comes to experiencing balance in our lives, we have certain needs that need to be filled throughout our lives and the more balanced our fulfillment of these needs, the smoother our boat will sail and the closer to balance we will get.

Self actualization: morality, creativity, problem solving, learning, lack of prejudice and acceptance of facts

Esteem: self esteem, confidence, respect

Love and belonging: friendship, family and intimacy

Safety: security of body, health, family, property, employment, resources and morality

Physiological: breathing, food, water, sex, sleep, homeostasis, excretion

Everyone can rank these in a different order of importance. At the same time, we may each rank them differently at different times in our lives. And that is perfectly normal.

What is certain? If one of the above is lacking and another is over emphasized, then we are out of balance. In trouble.

We are all works in progress. Remember that you are human and we are not perfect. (Even though it seems we are always striving for perfection.)  Remember instead that life is about the journey and the mistakes and learn from your mistakes to move on instead of begrudging yourself.

Give gratitude for who you are and be compassionate with yourself!

Happy holidays!

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Dana Dinnawi

Dana Dinnawi is an Integrative Nutrition health coach specializing in empowering women to improve their health and family life. She received her training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where she studied more than one hundred dietary theories and a variety of practical lifestyle coaching methods. She can be reached through her website and Facebook page.

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