Elizabeth Gilbert and Kerry Miller at Talking Volumes
I still haven’t wikipediaed myself. But it is on my to-do list.
I realized while I was walking the dog this morning that, in about a month, I am going to add a full fourteen more hours to my work week. This revelation is beyond exciting.
Two weeks ago I went and saw Elizabeth Gilbert at a special summer session of Talking Volumes. One of the the things she said (okay, a lot of what she said, but I’m going to focus on this thing) really struck me, because it’s something I’ve been struggling with. This isn’t a direct quote, btw, but she said that “balance” is a myth that our society is selling women right now. At first I was like– NO! I’m working so hard for balance! It’s real! I’ll achieve it!
She was specifically talking about Body/Mind/Spirt balance, how you never “achieve” anything, because you’re always a work in progress. She touched just a bit on the career/family balance too, but it wasn’t her main point. It’s been a comforting thought to have in the back of my head the last few weeks.
I keep looking for ways to balance all of my different “professional” projects: multiple writing projects, a jewelry business, wanting to paint, and I’m failing. And I’m trying to find the perfect balance between my family, my profession, and just plain relaxation. I’m also failing there.
The thing about it though, is for the last week or so, I haven’t cared. I’ve been very focused on one particular writing project and really haven’t worked on anything else. When my kids are home, most of the time, I’m giving them my attention. Except for when I’m working on something else (possibly writing.) And, last night, I knew I should read, but instead, I went to the mall.
I don’t think the pursuit of balance is a bad thing, in fact, I think it keeps me moving in the right direction. It’s when it becomes one more thing to beat yourself up about that’s unhealthy. Maybe, in the fall, when the kids are in school, I’ll actually start painting and retaking all of my etsy photos and any of the eighteen million other things on my list. Or, maybe not. We’ll see what my priorities are.
BTW- I took that picture. I’m pretty proud of it. Just sayin’.