Often times when we are looking to enhance or repair our relationship, a crucial element to the solution can be easily overlooked. A successful relationship depends on both partners working towards balance in life.
Have you ever noticed that when you feel tired from a lack of sleep, lonely from not spending time with friends and family, or bored from not pursuing your interests and hobbies, your relationship begins to feel tense or disconnected? That’s because your relationship, while able to meet some of your needs, cannot fulfill all of them. Nor can you begin to be the kind of partner you aim to be when feeling depleted in this way. Therefore, balance is a must.
Activities that Foster Balance
As we begin to incorporate more balance in life, it helps to consider that we, as individuals, are conceptually made up of five main components: physical (body), mental (mind), emotional (feelings), spiritual, and social. Each of these parts has a range of activities we engage in that contribute to our well-being.
For instance, our physical part has to do with everything we do to keep our bodies healthy. It’s comprised of exercise, eating healthy foods, getting enough sleep and attending to personal hygiene.
The mental aspect of self pertains to how we keep our minds stimulated and healthy. It includes awareness of our thought patterns and how we challenge certain critical or negative thoughts that can make us feel bad about ourselves.
The emotional/feelings component of self involves activities such as writing or journaling, spending time alone, or engaging in a hobby. The spiritual part can mean different things for different people. For some, it may mean faith and religious affiliation. For others, it can mean meditation, yoga, spending time in a natural setting, or playing an instrument.
Finally, the social component of self entails the relationships we have with our partner, our children, extended family, friends, and colleagues. It includes how we develop and maintain healthy interactions and connections with them by, for example, spending quality time together or maintaining open and clear communication.
Life Balance Check
To help us determine if we are leading a balanced lifestyle, at the end of each week, draw a pie chart divided into 5 parts, with each piece of the pie relating to one of the “components of self”. In each piece, write down all the different activities you participated in that week. Any part that is less full than the others can be seen as encouragement to spend a bit more time on during the following week.
Balance is key. When you start prioritize balance in life, our well-being flourishes and we feel content. Our relationship will also thrive. After all, it’s a lot easier to relate in a healthy way with our partners when we experience contentment within ourselves.