Life is a balancing act. You have to balance work and home. Achieve balance. How many times have we heard that it’s all about balance? I don’t see it that way anymore.
A lovely friend and I were talking one time about all the things we juggle with work and young children. She gave me some great insight into how she looks at life.
It’s not about balance at all. It’s about harmony.
She said that when she thinks about balancing all of her responsibilities, she thinks of a scale that’s constantly tipping and nearly impossible to keep in equilibrium. Wow, I can relate to that! Instead, she prefers to look at life like an orchestra. We have all these different instruments playing at the same time but they don’t have to play with the same intensity. Some instruments play louder than others and require more conducting. Others are happy to play in the background until it’s time for their solo. Some instruments play off key but they eventually get back on track.
This time of year, many of us are caught up in the process of clearing off our desks so that we can enjoy the holidays, or agonizing over every detail of the big celebration. Just the visual image of balancing all of these responsibilities makes my heart race. If instead, I visualize these different parts of my life as instruments in a song, the pressure is somehow lifted. I have permission to let go of the balancing act.
Creating harmony may mean letting my kids have peanut butter and crackers for lunch because they can make it themselves. It may mean buying cookies instead of baking them. I may even start the new year with some loose ends and have few piles on my desk. After all, music is art and art isn’t perfect. Its meaning is subjective and personal. My music is frequently tone deaf but it’s beautiful and it’s mine.