BALANCE, balance, balance! Everyone talks about balance. You must have 'balance' in your life. Balance family with your job, play with work, blah, blah, blah.
I agree...to a point. To understand my point of view, we need to define balance.
Balance is a condition in which different elements are equal. If we use that definition, balance is almost impossible. An unachievable goal that leaves us feeling like we've failed time and time again.
Take family and work. Most Americans spend more time away from their family during the waking hours than with them. Let's say you woke your kids up at 7am. Then we ship them off to school at 8am and pick them up at 4pm. That's 8 hours that they're away from us. Then our kids go to bed at 9pm. With the 1 hour before school (when they could be a sleepy, complaining gremlin...JK) that's only 6 hours with them. If you count that most have some sort of afterschool activity that they're in, it drops even more. True balance is insurmountable! You failed to achieve balance.
That's why I prefer to think in terms of HARMONY. Harmony is a consistent, orderly, or pleasing arrangement of parts. It's not equal in it's approach. Harmony is the give and take of situations. Sometimes more, sometimes less.
There are times in life, you're going to need to give more to your kids than your work (like on your days off, or vacations). And sometimes you're going to need to hit your work a little harder (like with that deadline that's coming up). With harmony, we allow our lives to ebb and flow with what is necessary at the time. When we are out of harmony, our family life suffers or our work suffers (still no balance!).
We could break down topic after topic, I'll make it short. Just imagine if we applied harmony to all parts of our life. Never FEELING like we have to sacrifice something for something else, but being able to accomplish both in their own way and own time. Taking that feeling of FAILING away and replacing it with a life that feels harmonious. If you still like to use the word BALANCE, change it's meaning in your head to be more like a scale that can tip back and forth. Create that harmony in your life.