Balanced lifestyle

4 simple steps to a more balanced lifestyle

6 minutos

In these hectic times, it can be far too easy to fall into the trap of neglecting one or more important areas of your life. 

While healthy habits are important, truly healthy people aim to achieve a balance between all aspects of their life – physical and mental well-being, relationships, stimulating work, an enjoyable social life, financial stability, and spiritual health.

In this article, we’ll break down some simple steps to achieving a more fulfilling and balanced lifestyle, no matter how busy you are. 

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What is a balanced lifestyle?

Psychologists define life balance as “a state of equally moderate-to-high levels of satisfaction in important life domains contributing to overall life satisfaction.” In other words, a balanced lifestyle requires a holistic approach to your well-being. 

To achieve lifestyle balance, you will need to focus on the key components that make up a rich and satisfying life. One useful way of visualising a balanced lifestyle is the “Wheel of Life”, a coaching tool first introduced by Paul Meyer, one of the founders of the practice known today as life coaching.

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The Wheel allows people to divide their life into segments, and consider how satisfied they are with each segment. For example: 

  • Money & Finances
  • Career & Work
  • Health & Fitness
  • Fun & Recreation
  • Environment – Home and Workplace 
  • Community
  • Family & Friends
  • Romantic Relationships 
  • Personal Growth & Learning
  • Spirituality

To create a truly healthy and enjoyable life, we each need to find a balance between all these aspects of our lifestyle that suits our own unique set of circumstances and personal preferences. 

The health benefits of a balanced lifestyle 

All these areas of our lives are interrelated, meaning that neglecting one of them can have a negative impact on other aspects too. 

For instance, if we prioritize our career over our family and friends, we may also experience higher levels of stress that can impact our physical health and fitness.  A meta-analysis of the impact of long working hours on employee health found that employees working long hours were more vulnerable to multiple health conditions, including fatigue, sleep problems, and workplace injuries.  

Strong relationships with family and friends can also have significant benefits for our health, and neglecting this area of our life carries major health risks. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, PhD, a Professor of Psychology at Brigham Young University, has found that “Lacking social connection carries a risk that is comparable, and in many cases, exceeds that of other well-accepted risk factors, including smoking up to 15 cigarettes per day, obesity, physical inactivity, and air pollution.”

Equally, carving out time for a more “spiritual” practice, such as meditation or prayer, has been shown to reduce stress and boost the immune system. 

Finally, making time for rest can have dramatic benefits for everything from your physical health to your work performance. For instance, Harvard Medical School reports that people who get eight hours of sleep every night are less likely to become obese, develop Type 2 diabetes, or suffer from hypertension. 

LIfe balance
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4 quick tips to create a more balanced lifestyle 

It can be challenging to find a healthy balance between all the aspects of your life that are important to you. However, there are some simple steps you can take to regain control over your time and create a more balanced lifestyle: 

1. Set limits. 

The Mayo Clinic warns that “If you don’t set limits, work can leave you with no time for the relationships and activities you enjoy.” Their advice? Learn to say no confidently, and avoid overscheduling your time. Seek guidance from your work manager on what is expected from you, and then develop strict boundaries around work time and family or social time. 

2. Build a healthy daily routine. 

Northwestern Medicine advises that setting up a daily routine that includes exercise, rest, and relaxation can reduce your stress levels, improve your work-life balance, and improve your sleep and your overall well-being.  

3. Take your sleep seriously. 

To make sure you get regular, high-quality rest, practice good sleep hygiene. Stick to a consistent bedtime and get up at the same time every day. Remove electronic devices from your bedroom, and make sure that the room is dark and comfortable. Avoid large meals, caffeine and alcohol before bedtime. 

4. Make time for your hobbies. 

Research shows that people with hobbies are less likely to suffer from stress and depression. Schedule time every week for the activities that make you happy. 

Building a balanced lifestyle can be tricky but even the busiest among us can bring more balance into their lives with these simple steps. A more balanced lifestyle can improve your quality of life, your mood, and your overall physical and mental health.

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