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    Last week I ran away from home.

    It wasn’t because I wanted time away from my husband or our home.  What I was searching for was that elusive place where all answers live. 

    I was sure that I would find it in a quiet cottage situated in an idyllic country setting.   Just me communing with nature! 

    Although creating a business plan was the premise for this retreat, my intuition had already told me that I shouldn’t hang my hopes on that.  It had a different idea.

    This brings me to my biggest insight from my journey inward – balance. 

    Life is about balance. 

    Like many people I’ve always strived to have work-life balance.  Talk about elusive! 

    This is really an unobtainable goal when looked at in the macro sense.  It needs to be broken down into the many layers of balance that create it.

    For instance: I thought I needed to be in a very quiet, idyllic place to reflect.  

    What I did was enjoy one day of quiet reflection (plus lots of napping)! :-)

    However, the quiet needed to be balanced with time spent in a busy coffee shop with lots of chatter and movement around me. Me, my computer and noise.  I needed both!

    There was also the intention I set for this retreat, which was to lead with my heart instead of my head.  I was aware of my tendency to get cerebral and push myself for productivity.  No need to waste time with my intuition or feelings! 

    Neale Donald Walsh expressed it well when he wrote…

    ...the mind and the soul must work together if you are to experience true bliss.

    Try not to spend too much time exclusively in your mind.  It is a magnificent tool, but it has a limited perspective. 

    Try not to spend too much time exclusively in your soul.  It has a much wider perspective, but you cannot negotiate physical life from only that place.  If you could, you would not have been given a mind.  

    Here is the trick: balance.

    So this is what I learned.   

    Striving for work-life balance is just too hard and leaves us feeling deflated and exhausted. 

    Balancing our mind and soul, the quiet and chaos – that’s much easier to exercise.  

    These are doable and help bring us closer to work-life balance.

    How about just balancing our workday – day by day.  We work hard but how about intentionally balancing that with breaks.

    These can be as simple as a few minutes looking out the window, a few deep breaths, a conversation with a friend or a short walk.   

    The intention you place on this makes a difference.  Enjoy it!

    And remember that “work” doesn’t mean just going to a job.  You might work at home, you might be a parent, you might be caring for aging parents, you might do volunteer work. 

    You get to define what balance is needed in your life.

    As human beings we are full of these dualities – the shadow and the light.   It could be balancing the many voices of our inner chatter.   Lately my inner judge has been visiting and I’ve had to actively balance her with my inner cheerleader.

    Balance is beautiful and I encourage you to embrace it!  

    What are the ways you bring balance to your life?

    Much love, Colleen

    Be Bold, Be Brilliant, Be YOU!