Finding Balance in a World of Extremes: 3 Tips to Help Ground You

balance

When we think about finding balance in life, the concept of work-life balance often comes to mind, but the concept of balance is applicable to every aspect of our lives. It can feel like, though, we are living in a world that forces us to choose extremes: live the fast-paced urban lifestyle or be an anti-tech hermetic living in one of those innovative and super cute micro-houses. Be a minimalist or max out your credit cards. Be obese in a fast food nation or wear size 0 yoga pants on the gluten-free train. Be a stay-at-home mom or be completely devoted to your career.

Where is the middle ground? Where is the option to dabble and enjoy while remaining grounded and centered?
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Chop Wood, Carry Water (Even better if you chop with a knife-hand strike)

Axe on chopping block

Today my life changed in a significant way and leaves me to make significant choices. I have cried, fretted, raged, and analyzed more in the past two months than I have in the past year, and I am mentally exhausted. About a week ago I finally relaxed, stopped resisting, and felt amazingly light and “at rest” in my emotions. For those of you playing the Law of Attraction home game, I significantly (dare I say quantum leaped) up the emotional/vibrational ladder.

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Oh YEAH? Here’s to the jerks who told us “You can’t”

polar bear
PPPHHHTTTT!!!! Mess with me again and I SWEAR I will eat you.


 A few weeks ago a friend posted on Facebook how grateful she was for a mentor that believed in her and gave her encouraging words. I’d like to remember someone who didn’t believe in me, because he set the trajectory for other major events in my life over the past 10+ years.

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Back in the Groove…Kinda

rock-n-roll

Last night I went to class after being absent for a week. I had spent the past several days focusing on another important aspect of my life that needed attention. It was exhausting and anxiety-ridden and ultimately very beneficial. Focusing so much attention on that aspect of my life, however, made me wonder what the point was of the other areas on my life wheel. Ever since I had too much thinking time on my hands at the last belt test I’ve been in a mini existential crisis. I’ve probably also been under the influence of a bonus mini depression, but that’s just par for the course. Needless to say the last several days I’ve been under a lot of emotional and physical stress.

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How to Prepare for a Taekwondo Belt Test When You Are as Old as Your Classmates’ Parents

bundleofnerves

Belt tests make me more nervous than any of the presentations I do for work or any of the hoops I had to leap through in graduate school. Here are some tricks I’ve gathered along the way that help me relax, do my best, and have fun.

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Pain and Gain

funny-pictures-cat-eats-pain-for-breakfast

“JEEEEZZUZ CHRIIIIIIST!” I screamed as I was thrown with the force and speed of a freight train (and yet somehow also in slow motion) to the ground by Jack*, a teenage black belt who is normally self-deprecating and gentle but surprised me with his sudden brutality. Immediately I felt remorse for taking the Lord’s name in vain and being disrespectful to the others so I quickly apologized to my partners and my instructor after I had recovered.

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Sparring with Demons – a Response to the Death of Robin Williams and the Societal Stigma of Mental Illness

demons

Amidst the outpouring of sadness and sympathy over the death of Robin Williams come the inevitable accusations of selfishness and cowardice. Early this morning I heard a woman at work snidely remark that she was surprised it had taken him this long. I had to walk away.

Mental illness is real and it is crippling. Suicide is not a decision that’s taken lightly. It is sought after as a (misguided) way to escape crushing pain and despair. The demon of depression and its many friends are very crafty and very powerful.

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