Mindful Careers: Get The Balance Right

Mindful careers require a sense of equilibrium. Our bodies, including our brains, are the instruments we use to determine our talents and then, actually carry out the tasks involved in doing our work. In working with clients to find more balance, we explore four area with a specific practice related to each:

Physical – Take care of your body
Intellectual – Exercise your mind
Spiritual – Nurture your spirit
Emotional – Tune in to your feelings

I’ve learned most of my personal lessons on balance from missing the physical component of this equation. Paying attention to my health and body in a compassionate and healthy way has been a struggle. In my tweens, I developed a periodic but debilitating eating disorder that I was not able to heal until my early 30’s. Prior to starting the healing process, I used work, over exercise, shopping, alcohol, drugs and cigarettes as a way to escape myself and my emotions. Balance during that time of life was about balancing my addictions in a way that allowed me to live and appear OK.

I was not OK.

In twenty-eight days from the date of this post, I intend to celebrate 25 years free from drugs, alcohol and cigarettes, thanks to the help I received from healers, therapists and support groups, I am very grateful for my progress and yet, my search for balance continues to be a challenging. It helps when I have physical goals. Currently, I’m working on developing more stamina and strength without creating new injuries. My 56-year-old body has been through so much it will require a few minor surgeries later this year to maintain the ability to exercise regularly. On the plus side, I’ve improved upon my ability to work on my physical needs by joining (and actually using) a gym this year.

How are you doing with your own sense of balance? Rate yourself from 1-10 for the following areas:

Physical – Take care of your body
Intellectual -Exercise your mind
Spiritual – Nurture your spirit
Emotional – Tune in to your feelings

Choose the one with the lowest score to focus on this week. Spend time reflecting on what are you doing well in this area and what subtle changes you can make this week. The goal is small, simple improvement(s) that help you build momentum and courage to make bigger changes.

See you next time for more helpful tips on how to achieve the ever-elusive balance. You can do it!

CEO and Founder, Bright Livelihoods

Laurel Donnellan’s mission is to help people find their home in the world of work. She has 30 years of experience as a leader, educator and coach and has received degrees from Cornell and Columbia. Need help with Balance - or any of the other Mindful Careers steps? Request a free 30-minute coaching session. Call us at 512.222.6651:

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