Do you ever watch different types of athletes and wonder what makes them successful? Ball players? Martial artists? Gymnasts? While a myriad of factors contribute to their successes, one constant among all the greats is their ability to maintain balance. In the sports world, this ideal is one that seems achievable through hard work and dedication. In the real world, however, it is slightly more complex.

In life, there are different types of balance. Examples include mental, physical, spiritual, psychological, financial, and social. Sometimes we do things that may seem bizarre to those around us or we make life changes that are a bit extreme. Someone may pick up a new hobby, start eating differently, move to a different home. Someone may start spending time around a different network of friends. These changes are usually due to a person’s desire to correct imbalance in his/her own life.

What’s more complex is whatever caused the imbalance in the first place. One moment everything seems to be routine and the next moment there is some unexpected shift. Perhaps some new information on health and fitness is discovered. Or maybe someone is trying to deal with a struggling or broken relationship. Maybe some government practices are creating unacceptable living conditions. Sometimes the source of one type of imbalance is the aftermath of correcting another type. It is difficult to strategize how to correct for imbalance if the source of imbalance is undefined. In fact, jumping straight into imbalance correction without first identifying the source will probably lead to the continued existence of imbalance. Not only would the imbalance still be present, but that problem could be compounded because there would then be an additional source of imbalance.

When it comes to the holy grail of perfect balance, one could argue that it does not exist. Perfect balance does not exist in sports or in life. Athletes may appear perfectly balanced, but their true skill is in their ability to constantly correct for imbalances. The imbalances never stop coming so the athlete never stops correcting. Some examples in sports appear more effortless than others, as do some examples in life. Those making huge life changes are correcting for what they consider huge life imbalances. Others make minor adjustments in an effort to maintain a reasonable level of balance. Do not be discouraged by the thought that perfect balance is still not discovered despite a lifetime of searching. Searching for perfect balance is not a waste, it is merely unrealistic to think that it can eventually be checked off a list.

People strive for success in a variety of ways. Wanting to be rich, popular, fun, loving, or smart are pretty common and for good reason. As we navigate through the years of our lives, remember to be aware of what matters to us and to continue to include these things in our constant search for balance. While reducing imbalances may or may not lead to world class success, it may just be the kind of success we have always wanted.

Husband. Father. Other stuff.

Husband. Father. Other stuff.