Rachelle is our libra sister from another mister. With a candid and thoughtful writing style, you'll feel like you're chatting with your (very wise) BFF. A full time writer, she blogs regularly on her own site- Discovering Elegance. We are so excited to have her contributing to our blog as a part of the Social Yoga Fam. You can read more about her here.
The other day I eased into sukhasana and set my intention for my practice: calmness. I’ve had a lot of curveballs thrown my way lately, so I was seeking balance (especially as a self-proclaimed poster girl for all the Libra ladies out there). I was ready to breathe a little calm into my storm.
And then, my yoga teacher offered something that completely rocked my Libra soul. “This week, I’ve been working through the concept of balance. And I want to share a discovery with you: balance doesn’t actually exist.”
Whoa. Hold on. I’ve spent a good chunk of my life searching for some sort of wonderful equilibrium. Now, you’re telling me that balance is unattainable? That I’ve been on a pursuit of the impossible?! No, thank you. Insert ballerina-cross-armed-emoji here.
Everyone talks about finding ‘life balance’ like it’s a destination on an island of happiness, a harmonious place that all of the yogis have reached. Hello, sign me up. I would like a one-way ticket to that paradise.
Then, everything will even out. Then, my life won’t be so stressful. Then, I can celebrate my success without feeling guilt. Then, then, then.
The truth? My yoga teacher was 100% right.
Balance is nonexistent (and a huge f*cking waste of our time).
Balance is not a destination. It’s not happiness. By pursuing balance we actually create more imbalance by focusing on the future and taking ourselves out of the present. By striving for balance, we automatically tell ourselves that, in the moment, we are not enough.
“The pursuit of balance makes us juggle. It puts us behind (always behind,) makes us guilty, neglectful, imbalanced. It’s as useful a concept as original sin. You can never get it right.” — Danielle LaPorte
Balance is as elusive as perfection. We persist on evening out our lives, butdo we really want to be rigid and stiff?
In our practice, we are constantly breathing, bending, and swaying with our bodies as we attempt our most difficult poses. We waver and shake, building strength and stability. We adapt to the rise and fall, as we do with the experiences we face in our lives. We are flexible. We become stronger because of it.
Being rigid, being perfect, being even and uniform. Why are these qualities we continue to earnestly seek when it’s completely unnatural? I’m calling bullshit.
We shouldn’t be striving for balance. Instead, let’s start balancing. Let’s make it an action, not a noun — we are always moving, constantly and presently to our own personal rhythm.
Let’s give up the all-encompassing, never-ending quest for balance. Instead, let’s focus on balancing, discovering, and navigating through the twists and turns of life, on and off the mat. Let’s embrace the inevitable peaks and valleys, the curveballs, the ups and downs, and move through them at our own pace. That’s something to strive for.