Bringing Life into Balance

What’s the best exercise to do?
What’s the best diet to follow?

When someone asks me what I think about this exercise or that diet I often find myself at a loss for what to tell them. I know they want a simple answer but sometimes the simple answer is hard to hear. We need to find a balance in our life between exercise and diet, work and play, media candy and meditation.  So how do we do that?

What is the best diet? It is the one that keeps you feeling vibrant and alive full of energy and strong immunity to viruses and colds. It is a balanced diet high in vegetables especially the green ones, good quality proteins, a few grains, fruits, nuts and seeds, good source of fresh clean water, and very little processed foods and refined sugars no more than 10 percent because remember balance. Sometimes we need a little sweet in life. And a good balance between the protein, vegetables and grains depends on your body type and what works optimal for you.

Same with exercise. Too much yoga can leave one weak and mushy putting their tendons and ligaments at risk for injury.  Too much weight training can leave one tight, and inflexible leading to injury of muscle tissue. And too much cardio exercise like running can lead  to stress fractures and imbalanced muscles. Find a balance in your exercise program. Make sure you are getting at least one day of strength training with weights, include some yoga stretching to all your exercise routines and remember cardio. At least 3 days per week of cardio. Doesn’t have to be long, 20 minutes of interval style cardio program where you add in 30 – 60 second sprints of vigorous movement, enough to leave you near breathless.

When it comes to “chilling out” we also need a balance. Chilling out to TV or to our computer/smartphones can disconnect us to ourselves and our species. Too much meditation can lead to a distancing of ourselves from our life here on this earth and in this body keeping us disconnected. However, most of us don’t meditate enough if at all.

Balance can be hard to find. Seems so simple but we convince ourselves that we need to keep working and we don’t have time to exercise or we worked so hard today that we deserve to take ourselves out for dinner. We veg out at the TV or in front of the computer but we haven’t emptied out our head. We keep filling it up with stuff we don’t need.

Where do we start? Try a simple 10 minute meditation in the morning and then in the middle of your day. Sit at your desk, feet flat on the floor uncrossed, hands open in your lap and close your eyes, drop your jaw and just pay attention to your breath. Try this for 2-5 minutes at first then add a minute per day.

How to Balance Giving and Receiving

“Give away what you think you have not enough of.” -Neale Donald Walsh

This thought may seem perplexing at first.  But let’s break it down in simpler terms.  Need a hug? Giving a hug.  Feeling unloved?  Take actions that demonstrates your love.  Feeling unappreciated?  Show your appreciation to others and also to yourself. But what about if we feel we’ve given too much or that we don’t receive enough?

Let’s begin by exploring how we may be giving and receiving at the moment.  Ask yourself, are you giving in order to hopefully receive something in return?  When you don’t receive what you had hoped for, do you feel used, victimized and resentful?  For some people, giving to others puts them in the driver’s seat.  We may be giving in order to attempt to get our needs met.  But at the same time, we may be avoiding dealing with the underlying emotions creating this behavior, such as loneliness or fear of rejection.  On the same token, long-term repressing of emotions may bring out fear-based energies such as narcissism, materialism and hostility.  Finding a balance between giving and receiving starts with admitting to feeling needy and unloved.  This may not feel good at first.  But after a time of just allowing this to sink in a bit, we realize that having needs does not make us needy and unlovable.

The key here lies in exploring and getting in touch with our deepest feelings.  In the Gates of Power Method, this is tied with the Gate of Emotions.  This may be one of the bravest things to undertake, because of the range of emotions there are to experience, including the darkest of feelings.  But when we have gotten a glimpse of these dark emotions, believe it or not, this is actually the perfect place to start exploring deeper.  The result? Feeling more loved, more appreciated, more connected and more able to express our truest selves.

Our underlying needs and feelings are completely valid. 

When we allow ourselves to dig deeper and feel the full spectrum of feelings we learn how not to judge our feelings as good or bad.  This enables us to become aware of the underlying need that is not being met, so that we can behave in a way that does not push people away, thereby diminishing our ability to get our needs met.   If you have a tendency to over give, practice abstaining from giving for a while until you are sure that you are not doing it in order to receive something in exchange.  Practice being open to receiving.  Practice giving if you feel that is what you must do to find balance.

If you are unsure of what to do, simply start each day with a gratitude list of 5 things that you are grateful for.  No need to judge any of the items on your list as good or bad. Trust that we live in an abundant world, that all our needs will be met, and that there is enough to go around, so we do not need to feel threatened by each other.  We are all humans with the same emotions and so we can all relate and even help each other.