Bet you’ve never heard that before.
Want to know something I actually had never heard before? That on almost every walk you take in and around NYC you will, in all likelihood, encounter some fairly fresh human vomit. That wasn’t something that I was warned about before moving into the city. And I think it speaks to my point: all things in moderation. Whether that’s sweets and alcohol (or anything else that could make you toss your fluids all over a well populated street corner) or that’s speaking to how often you work out and how often you chill out. Don’t stress yourself out, but get your shit done. It’s a balancing act – that’s for sure.
If you were to ask my parents what worried them most about me, they would not say that I was going to work myself into the ground. Conversely if you were to ask them what worries them most about my older sister (and my new roommate), they would probably not say that she was going out too much. It’s a pretty safe assumption that I’m the one in our new apartment who’s most likely to be the “play too hard” and she’s likely to be the “work too hard” of the duo.
But why can’t we each put these two ok-in-moderation qualities together to become the perfect yin and yang on our own? How can my sister and I not end up throwing up on the street corner due to 1) too much booze or 2) too much stress?
- Don’t take yourself too seriously: Since moving to NY I’ve noticed people here tend to take themselves very seriously. I’ll talk to someone about yoga and they immediately want to pop a blood vessel out-yoga-knowing me. I believe you, you practice yoga, I’m certainly not trying to “start something” about it – I merely want to know what style you practice, not the 1,000 year history behind it (shesh). Same goes for any other career or hobby – it’s what you do enjoy it, don’t compete about it (especially during a bar chat, how off-putting).
- Don’t be a joke either: Know your shit, because chances are the people around you know it backwards and forwards. That’s not to say any old “hello” you get from a stranger with the same interests as you is an invitation to vomit that knowledge all over them (sorry for the kind of sick theme we have going in this post, puke wise); but know your shit. Be humble about it, but confident in it. And when you do get it wrong, laugh at yourself for a moment, learn from it, and commit it to memory.
- Make time for what you need: Yoga, meditation, 2-hours of TV time – whatever. Don’t be attached to what it looks like to other people. If you need to get your Grey’s Anatomy fix every Thursday to feel whole and complete, then dear God don’t let the nay-sayers stop you! If you need to make time to get on your yoga mat then don’t let that pile of work stop you. If you’re a busy person then life will always be busy, find time to slow things down – or suffer the consequences (and then we’ll see how much time you “saved”).
- Make “To-Do” lists and stick to them: You heard me. If you put it in writing then not getting it done becomes much harder to explain. Even if you’re the only person holding yourself accountable, you’ll quickly get in the habit of ticking things off the list. One might say it can become a compulsion (look out for that).
- Make time for friends & busting up: Laughing burns calories and having a healthy social life is important to a happy life. If you have millions of dollars and no one to go to the movies with then your life sucks (regardless of your credit score or paycheck). Make time for people – and not just the people who can do something for you. Remember those people you hung out with in high school just because they got you? If you don’t have people like that in your adult life then something is seriously wrong. Adults need BFF’s, too.
- Talk to your family: These are the people who have known you since forever, talking to them should be pretty easy. And if it’s not figure out why it’s not – you’ll find yourself feeling much more at peace if you feel chill and calm about your family. Nothing creates more life drama than not speaking to someone in your family or holding a grudge. Three words about grudges (especially in your family): Get. Over It. Love these peeps unconditionally and show it with a phone call (or a shout out in your blog – hi mom & dad)!
Are these six tips the secret to a perfectly balanced life? Hell to the no. If it were that easy than I wouldn’t be sitting in a half empty bedroom among piles of formerly well divided piles dirty and clean laundry. But it’s a good place to start. And if these don’t speak to you, maybe they at least got you thinking about how you can contribute to the cleanliness of the streets in your town. All things in moderation – enjoy life and get your work done.