How to Stay Balanced and Focused in a World That Won’t Stop

Life is not about constant stability, but about finding and creating our own balance


It is common in Latin America to see jugglers at traffic lights, hoping they will make some money by sharing their polished skills. You can find anything there, from clowns, to dancers, to mummies, to acrobats. It’s like a full circus, at a corner.

On a given day, my car stopped very close to one of those friendly characters. The day was pitch perfect, with not one cloud in the sky. I could observe from my rearview mirror the impeccable make up in this young man’s face, his golden hair, his wide smile, and the speed at which he moved as he approached me. Suddenly, I could see the whole scene: he was riding on a single-wheel bicycle, trying to keep his balance in a continuous movement back and forth. In addition, he had several little balls in his hands that he kept suspended in the air, with enough skill. His ability to concentrate on so much at a time caught my attention. He seemed to really enjoy what he was doing. He was one with the whole show. Several feet stood between that boy and myself, but I could feel the vibrant energy of his joy.

Time went by, quickly. The green light and the horns of the cars behind me were inviting me to get going. I paused for a moment to lower the window and give him whatever change I had. A wonderful present moment. An experience that would later remind me about the juggling we all do as the spectacle of life continues, balancing it all at the same time, and in the meantime, being happy with the process.


Concentration: a key to live the different roles with fulfillment


Modern life invites us to have an experience similar to that of the young man at the traffic light. We move between family life, relationships, children, parents, work, and time to take care of ourselves and our health. In the midst of so much, is it possible to balance all the balls we have up in the air while keeping our spirits and smile? The answer is yes, if we are focused on the present moment.

Living each of these roles with quality and enjoying them is possible, if we are entirely focused on the experience that is presented before our eyes, and if we avoid being in a certain role (i.e. family time), while the mind is in another (i.e. work). That would be as if that young man were distracted by watching a child cry in one of the cars. If that happened, he would immediately lose focus from what he is doing, probably losing this balance and impacting the beauty of the experience he was creating.


Awakened or distracted? That is the question.


How do we live our day to day? Are we going through life running after the next moment, not allowing it to be complete when we are already thinking about the next one? Or, on the contrary, do we stop to appreciate the simplicity of our beautiful lives? Do we take the time to appreciate the sky from our window, the new tooth that is coming out in our child’s mouth, or the smile of those whom we love?

To be concentrated and focused is to be fully, entirely, and absolutely present. Like when you are listening to your partner talking, and you can detect subtle changes in his or her tone of voice. Like when you are walking and enjoying the warmth of the breeze, and the smiles of the people who pass you by. There is so much information being bombarded into our brains in the day to day, that if we get distracted and unfocused, we can lose our balance.


Conscious action as a way to create our balance


A full life is one that allows you to feel comfortable and fulfilled with the integration of all areas of your life. Sometimes our attention may be more focused on those areas that directly impact our survival, our basic needs: our financial stability, or business or career success. When this happens, we can unintentionally downplay the areas that support our personal growth, such as relationships, family, home, friends, and the relationship with our higher self through spirituality.

The issue is that when we neglect or minimize any of these areas, the feeling of stagnation or frustration will appear, sooner or later, and this will also end up impacting those areas that we thought we had under control. When one of the areas takes most of our energy in detriment of others, we begin to lose our precious balance.

With some frequency, maybe weekly, it’s a good practice to stop to analyze how we are going through life: What areas have we neglected this week? Is there turbulence in our relationships? Have we lost peace? Do we have financial problems? Is there a particular area that causes us discomfort, or that we prefer to avoid? Is our physical body lacking in energy and suffering from any pain? These are all signs that life sends us, so that we are more attentive, and so that we stop and readjust our course. Immediate, simple changes are required to regain the fullness of living life at all levels and to eventually maintain ourselves in that state for the longer term.

Small actions generated from deep inside will lead us to great results. Just as a small change in the angle of a compass produces great adjustment in the size of the circle that is drawn with it, so our lives can be positively impacted by the cultivation of our inner world.

Disconnecting from the frenzy of our day to day to create space, even if for 10 minutes, and to listen to the guidance of our hearts in that silence, will be very conducive to recover and maintain our balance. The heart knows exactly where we should focus our time and energy in the coming hours and days, and it is a wonderful guide to keep our balance in the various areas, helping us achieve the fulfilled life that we long for. It’s just a matter of giving us permission – and time – to do so.



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