I knew there was something I usually did on a Friday morning, but today I just couldn’t work out for the life of me what it was! It’s taken me all day to realise that Friday morning is my allocated time to write about Happy Fridays!
I take that as a good sign of a really good holiday and that I really switched off and disengaged my ‘working’ brain. Ok – so I posted lots on Social Media, but that was about sharing all the highlights and fun and all the delicious (and healthy!) food I was enjoying, all the exercise (and fun!) I was having and general musings about life, friends and gratitude all contribute to happiness.
Tonight, as I sit in the glorious sunshine at my garden table, surrounded by the summer flowers and the 5th load of washing on the line, I reflect on two very different holidays, both with very different types and ways of relaxing.
Our sailing trip to Greece was pure relaxation, sunbathing, reading, floating with a gentle paddle board around a bay. We reconnected as a family with quiet time and bonding. Food was simple – fresh fish, fresh salads, fresh fruit and local wines in a carafe loaded with ice. I came home with a rested body and a mind full of ideas for new programmes and courses to help those in need of a transformation – whether it be life or health or happiness.
Our Cornish trip was relaxation of a different kind. The kind where you are so busy, you have no time to think or brainstorm or strategise; we bounced from surfing first thing to long walks, water skiing or cycle rides. One day my heart rate was in ‘fat burn’ mode for over 4 hours! A real work out but just didn’t feel like exercise at all. We feasted on fine foods from some of the nation’s best loved chefs and we surrounded ourselves with people we love. And the wine flowed and the laughter was loud!
I see so much on social media about people ‘finding balance’ or wanting to create ‘balance’ but finding it illusive. Particularly, over the summer holidays as we all face the ‘juggle struggle’ with children at home while trying to work or stick to a normal working routine. I feel that balance is unique to each individual; not only that, it is multidimensional – dynamic and a moving beast. Balance for yourself, balance for your family, balance for your health, balance in work. I remember a great quote by Liz Gilbert when she was with Oprah, where she talked about ‘balance’ being yet another stick for us all to beat ourselves up with when we don’t achieve it. She preferred to see it as a beautiful chaos.
I liked that. But now, I find chaos doesn’t work so well when my family needs some structure to keep us all sane and in a weird way, to feel safe. We like boundaries, routine and habit. So I like to think of life now in terms of ‘integration’. I like to ask myself and my clients – how do you ‘integrate’ keeping healthy with your family and/or work routine? How do you integrate your happiness while keeping everyone else happy? Rather than a multidimensional see-saw you have to keep balance by shifting constantly depending on external factors, now I envisage a mesh… a safety net if you wish.. If one strand fails, that’s ok – there are plenty of others strands to keep you afloat… Rather than balance, I am weaving.. I find that more a gentle, less stressful way to live.
So my Friday evening musings are just a strand that I have woven in to my daily life. So I didn’t do it this morning… ok! No stress… It is done now. And now I am off to put yet another load of washing on and get ready to welcome my Legendary Dad and my Beautiful Step Mum, turn on the BBQ and ask the boys for the 10th time to mow the lawn!
Happy Bank Holiday to all my UK readers – it is set to be a scorcher! And Happy Friday to all!
Lots of love
Heal Yourself Happy News!
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